🏷  Bible name Greek Levi Semitic pun · name   —   by Gerry · Nov 2018 · 2246 words

The popularity of the name Levi among ultra-rich aristocrats & banksters can be explained by the fact that the underlying word root לוה lwh also means “banker” & “moneylender”. The name also puns with לעב lˁb for “mocking” & “playing”, which is what spookery is all about. Spooks who assume a mock identity may thus assume a “Levite” name.

Levi’s puns in a nutshell

So far, i have found 2 puns for the Biblical character לוי lwy Levi:

Levi as pun with lˁb for “playing” & “mocking”

Levi puns with the word root לעב lˁb leav for “playing” & “mocking”. This works because Bet & Waw are interchangeable, and both can denote a V. You can still see this interchangeability in Levi-like spook names such as Löwenstein, Löbenstein & Lövenstein, or Lewistein, Lebistein & Levistein.

This “mockery” pun of Levi even works in Greek, where the name is close to λωβα loba for “ridicule”, and to λωβευω lobeuo / loveyo for “mockery”. These may even be etymologically related.

This is likely the main meaning in the Biblical story of Simeon & Levi, since Simeon also means “playing”. It also explains Levi’s styling as a “priestly” name and his association with Kohen & Aaron, since those names also seem to be theatrical puns. I suppose the Levites also often stand for “mockers” in the Biblical story.

This chimes with the general theme of the entire Bible, and spook culture in general. Most other Bible names & spook names also seem to be puns with deception & fakery.

Semitic lˁb = mock, play, jest, joke, toy

לעב lˁb laab : to jest, deride, mock; Syriac ܠܥܒ: mock, delight oneself, be greedy; Arabic لعب: play, sport, jest — Old Hebrew (Strong)

לעב lˁb leˁav : to jest, mock; Aram. לְעַב (= he jested, mocked), Syr. אֶתְלַעַב (= he delighted in, was eager), Arab. la’iba (= he played, sported, jested). — Hebrew (Klein)

לעב lˁb laˁav : mockery, disgrace — Hebrew (Klein)

הלעבה hlˁbh halˁavah : scorn — Hebrew (Klein)

לעב lˁb leˁev : sport, mockery — Hebrew (Jastrow)

לעב lˁb : to mock, talk lasciviously — Hebrew (Jastrow)

לעב lˁb : to be profligate; to behave badly; to misbehave, to mock, laugh at; mockers; to be avid or greedy, to be gluttonous, to enjoy oneself — Aramaic (CAL)

לעיב lˁyb : mockery — Aramaic (CAL)

ܠܵܥܹܒ݂ lˁb laiw : to play, to have fun, to amuse self / to enjoy oneself, to entertain oneself — Syriac (AAF)

ܠܥܵܒ݂ܵܐ lˁbˀ laiwa : to play, to have fun, to amuse self / to enjoy oneself, to entertain oneself — Syriac (AAF)

لَعِبَ lˁb laˁiba : to play; to trick, to cheat — Arabic (Wikt)

لَعْب lˁb laˁb : game; sport, amusement, diversion — Arabic (Wikt)

تَلَعَّبَ tlˁb talaˁˁaba : to play, to act playfully — Arabic (Wikt)

لُعْبَة lˁbʰ luˁba : toy, plaything; doll; butt of a joke, laughingstock — Arabic (Wikt)

لَعْبَة lˁbʰ laˁba : game; trick — Arabic (Wikt)

Greek lobeuo = mockery; loba = ridicule

λωβεύω lobeuo : mock, make a mock of — Ancient Greek (LSJ.gr)

λώβη lobe : outrage, dishonour; a disgrace — Ancient Greek (LSJ.gr)

λώβα loba : slur, ridicule, dishonor, insult — Ancient Greek (LSJ.gr)

Levi as “moneylender”

One important derivation of the word root לוה lwh for “joining” is the meaning of “moneylending”. The name Levi thus means “moneylender”. It’s not even a pun, but the same word.

Official derivation of Levi from lwh for “joining”

The proliferation of the name Levi is officially explained with an ancient caste of priests who are all sons of a single patriarch named Levi. Oddly, there is no story or explanation what was so special about these people, that it would warrant such widespread usage of the name.

According to Strong, the word is “of uncertain derivation”, but it is usually linked to the root לוה lwh which means “to join”, with H and Y being suffixes.

The name is also introduced in the Bible with an official pun about “joining”, in Genesis 29:34.

Since V as in Levi can be written with both Bet & Waw, the root also occurs in the form לבב lbb.

Hebrew lwy = Levi; lw, lb = joining

לוי lwy Levi : a son of Jacob, also the tribe descended from him — Old Hebrew (Strong)

לויי lwy Levi : Levite, Levites, Levitical, descendant of Levi — Old Hebrew (Strong)

לוה lwh lavah : to join, be joined — Old Hebrew (Strong)

לבב lbb : to join closely; to tie; to be tied around; to join, tie; to encourage; to strengthen — Hebrew (Jastrow)

Hebrew lwh meaning “moneylending”

The meanings of the root לוה lwh include many specific things that are “joined” to a person, among them financial debt. The same spelling לוה lwh can thus also mean debt, loan, borrowing, lending, debtor, creditor. These terms use both suffixes H and Y (which are typically interchangeable), so they are often written exactly like the name Levi. The difference could only be guessed from the context in the original consonantal script.

The grammatical difference between debtor & creditor is merely that between passive & causative: “being joined” to a debt-contract vs. “making others join” a debt-contract.

We can get a feeling for the derivation of “lending” from “joining” in English, where people are also bound or tied to a bond or contract.

Hebrew lwy = Levi; lwh = joining

לוה lwh lavah : to borrow, borrowed, borrower becomes the lender’s, borrows, lend, lender like the borrower, lends — Old Hebrew (Strong)

לוי ; לוה lwh; lwy : to join, be connected; to assume an obligation; to borrow; debtor; to follow; to lend; creditor — Hebrew (Jastrow)

לוה lwh : borrow, borrowed; lend, lent — Hebrew (Klein)

לווה ; לוה lwh; lwwh : borrower, debtor — Hebrew (Klein)

מלוה mlwh : lender, creditor — Hebrew (Klein)

מלוה mlwh : loan, debt; formed from לוה — Hebrew (Klein)

הלואה hlwˀh : loan; hiph‘il of לוה — Hebrew (Klein)

Semitic & Sumerian lwh for “surrounding” & “twisting”

When we check other Semitic languages, we see that the most basic meaning of the root is “surrounding”, “binding” & “twisting”. All of these are spook concepts, so Levi may include other puns, especially since the “Sons of Levi” are often paired with other concepts.

We can also see that the middle letter was sometimes W, and sometimes B. We can also see that the H or Y are simply grammatical endings of the respective language, and not part of the word root. The word root consonants would be lw & lb.

Note that the cuneiform sign 𒆸 LAGAB used to write Akkadian lawû & labû is a symbol of an enclosing fence, supporting the meaning of “surrounding”.

The Akkadians are said to have inherited their cuneiform signs from the Sumerians. When we check how the 𒆸 LAGAB sign was used in Sumerian, we see that it also meant “fence” there, even with a presumed pronunciation close to Levi! But what’s more, we can see that the meaning of “debt contract” already existed in Sumerian, for the same sign & word, similar to Levi!

The ePSD dictionary cites hišû as Akkadian for “debt-note”. The Yale Cuneiform Commentaries Project (headed by a Mr. Levi) states that hišû was also written with the sign 𒆸 LAGAB, as in lawû & labû. So it’s possible the Akkadian readings for “debt-note” were also lawû & labû!

We even find the “financial” Levi in English, though here derived from Latin levo for “lifting”.

Hebrew, Aramaic, Arabic, Akkadian lwh = wind around, twist around, fence around

לוה lwh : to wind, turn, twist; Arabic lawā (= he wound, turned, twisted), Akkadian lamū, lawā (= to surround, encircle — Hebrew (Klein)

לוי lwy : to accompany; company — Aramaic (CAL)

لَوَى lawā : to twist; to turn the ends in opposite directions — Arabic (Wikt)

labû : to go round, to circumvent, to circumambulate, to circle, to get around, to get round, to besiege, to surround, to encircle; to fence in, to wrap up, to veer, to fence, to hedge; besieged, surrounded — Akkadian (AAF)

𒆸𒆸 lawû; labû : to surround, to besiege, to encircle something; to encircle, to besiege (city, enemy), to blockade; to wrap up (in cloth, string); to go round in survey (cult, animals); to walk round the land of someone (witness); to keep company with, to hang around with; to turn / veer round, to change quickly / completely; to continually encircle / to assail / to torment somebody; to repeatedly be wound round; to be wound round each other; is surrounded; to surround, to wrap; to encircle a building with a wall / an ornament / brickwork; to cause to besiege; to make / have someone walk round, to survey a field, to bring by circuitous route; to be besieged; to embrace one another, to hug one another — Akkadian (AAF)

Sumerian lagab = fencing around, debt-note

𒆸 lagab : rail, fence, side-wall; Akkadian kutlu — Sumerian (ePSD)

𒆸 lagab : debt-note; Akkadian hišû — Sumerian (ePSD)

English levy = impose tax or fine

levy : to impose (a tax or fine) to collect monies due, or to confiscate property. — English (Wikt)

Biblical occurrences of lwh for “moneylending”

There are many Biblical occurrences for the forms לוה lwh & לוי lwy in the meaning of “borrowing” & “lending”. Some grammar forms even use a Y vowelization, as in Levi. This is seen in Deuteronomy 28:12 as לוית lwy-t for “you lend”, and in Nehemiah 5:4 as לוינו lwy-nw for “we borrowed”.

You’ll also notice that “lender” & “borrower” are easily mixed up in their similar grammar forms. That is why many spooks don’t like to call themselves Levi, but HaLevi. To them, HaLevi does not mean “the Levite”. Rather, it’s the H-prefixed active-causative Hif‘il form, meaning “he who actively causes others borrow”, i.e. the creditor.

Again, it is easy to see that לוי lwy Levi is indeed derived from לוה lwh lavah for “joining” & “debt”.

If you lend money to one of my people among you who is poor, you must not act as a creditor to him; you are not to charge him any interest.

אם כסף תלוה את עמי את העני עמך לא תהיה לו כנשה לא תשימון עליו נשך

Exodus 22:25

The LORD will open the heavens, His abundant storehouse, to send rain to your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations, but borrow from none.

יפתח יהוה לך את אוצרו הטוב את השמים לתת מטר ארצך בעתו ולברך את כל מעשה ידך והלוית גוים רבים ואתה לא תלוה

Deuteronomy 28:12

Levi in the 12 tribes parable

Oddly, in the 12 tribes parable, Levi does not seem to stand for a mode of spookery like most other tribes, but is slapped onto the name Simeon as an attribute. Together, they seem to denote spook enemies from among the populace, probably as a pun with “joined troublemakers” (see Genesis 49:5. This is strange since we’d expect each tribe to be tool of spookery, but apparently the 12 tribes parable was written differently. Gad & Benjamin also do not stand for spookery here.

There is another Levi-like pun in Judah’s verse Genesis 49:9, where lavi “lion” apparently puns with alav “oppressed”.

If Levi is still generally seen as one of 12 methods of spookery, then it would probably be “mockery”, see above.

If there was ever an original 12 tribes parable before spookery, as 12 scepters of regular rulership maybe, then Levi would perhaps have been the “retinue” of the ruler. In Aramaic, “retinue” is written lwy, exactly like Levi, also derived from “encircling”.

Punny symbols for Levi

The name Levi is found in many prominent aristocratic symbols. All are pronounced similar to Levi, and thus like “creditor” & “oppressor”, and also like generally “twisting”, “binding” & “surrounding” everything. There may also be more meanings to the name.

🏷  Bible name Greek Levi Semitic pun · name