🏷  Bible name Semitic pun · name   —   by Gerry · Aug 2020 · 186 words

The Biblical name Simeon is derived from šmˁ for “hearing” & “obedience”, but the same spelling šmˁ also means “playing” & “joking”. In his own Biblical story, Simeon is paired with Levi, whose name also means “playing”. It may be a theater parable about live-enacted hoaxes.

The Mishnah also opens with several “laws” about the Shema prayer, which is the same word. It may really open with rules about enacting spookery.

The meanings may be related via “reciting”, “making listen”, “playing [music]”.

Hebrew, Arabic, Persian šmˁ = Simeon, hear, play, joke

שמעון šmˁwn Shimeon : Simon, Simeon; a son of Jacob, also his tribe; From shama‘: “hearing” — Old Hebrew (Strong)

שמע šmˁ shama : to hear; announce, listen, obey, make listen, proclaim — Old Hebrew (Strong)

אשמע ˀšmˁ : to cause to hear, cause to be heard, announce, proclaim; to make music, play — Hebrew (Jastrow)

شَمَعَ šmˁ šamaˁa : to play, to sport, to game; to joke or jest; to be mirthful, to laugh — Arabic (Wikt)

شمع šmˁ shamʻ : playing, jesting — Persian (Steingass)

شموع šmwˁ shamūʻ : frolicsome, jesting; playing, joking, being frolicsome — Persian (Steingass)

مشمعة mšmˁʰ mashmaˁat : playing, jesting; a joke — Persian (Johnson)

🏷  Bible name Semitic pun · name