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Old 16th May 2007, 12:28 PM   #1
Jens Nordlunde
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Default Jamdhar/katar why do we call it a katar?

When reading in Arms and Jewellery of the Indian Mughuls by Abdul Aziz, i found something interesting. He shows a plate from A’in-i-Akbari and gives the names of the weapons shown on the plate, and later in the book he gives a description of the different weapons. There are several funny things here, but what especially caught my attention were two things. In the text below the author accepts what Blochmann choose to call the weapons, not what they wee called on the drawing, although this name, no doubt, was written to the same time the drawing was made – the name on the drawing could of course be wrong, but I find it difficult to believe. One of the other things, which caught my eye were number five and eleven. Number five is what we would call a katar and the Indians a jamdhar, but number eleven is called a katara. The difference is not in the hilt, but in the blade, as the blade of the katara is slimmer and curved, but the blade of the jamdhar is straight. We must remember that in India a ‘katar’ is called by many names, according to the number if blades, curved or straight and so on, so maybe the European who ‘invented’ the name ‘katar’ saw all daggers with the same hilt, as the same kind of weapon – a katar, and not as different daggers like the Indians did; much like we do with the swords – a sword with a tulwar hilt is a tulwar, no matter what the blade looks like.

Could it be, that someone asked an Indian with a curved 'katar' what his dagger was called, and was told it was a katara. Not noticing the curved blade, the someone thought all daggers with such a hilt were called katara.


(1) Shamshir, (2) Khanda, (3-4) Gupti ‘asa and sheath, (5) Jamdhar, (6) Khanjar, (7) Jamkhak (according to Blockmann; name in plate therefore wrong), (8) Bank, (9) Janbwa (name in plate wrong again), (10) Narsingh-moth (so in Blochmann; in plate the name is pesh-qabz), (11) Katara, (12) Kaman (bow), (13) Takhsh-kaman (small bow) and arrow, (14) Tarkash (quiver), (15) Paikan-kash (arrow-drawer).
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Old 19th May 2007, 02:25 PM   #2
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This is indeed a most interesting topic brought up by Jens, the terminology applied to these weapons, and how semantics and transliteration have undoubtedly confounded the proper terms for many of them. I think the idea of variation in terms used for katars with curved blades as opposed to those with the typical straight blades seems quite plausible.
I think the term 'katara' has a much more general application, though even that idea is vaguely applied. In regions of what is now Nuristan, the Kalash carry a dagger with hilt similar to the khanjhar (#6) shown here, without the closed knuckleguard, and these are termed locally 'katara'.

I have always considered interesting that the Persian 'quaddara' and the Omani 'kattara' seem to have thier terms so closely associated to the term for these daggers.

The term katar it would seem, and I emphasize I am no linguist, possibly to be diminutive of the kattara term?

Then there is the much discussed application of the term jhamdhar or jemadhar as argued by Pant to be the correct term for the 'katar'. He claims that the term became misapplied inadvertantly by Egerton in his work.

I always find discussions on the katar fascinating as it is truly one of the anomolies of ethnographic edged weapons, not only in its origins and development, but as shown here, even the term it is called by.

I do hope others will share thier observations as well.

All best regards,
Jim
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Old 25th May 2007, 05:23 AM   #3
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In Hindi (and Nepali), the word is spelled as kaTaar (see transcription key), and seems to derive from (an unattested) Old Indo-Aryan/'Sanskrit' word *karttaara-. It seems to simply mean 'knife, dagger'. The root it derives from ultimately means 'to cut', and there are other related words with meanings like 'scissors' (e.g. Hindi kaatii 'goldsmith's scissors', Assamese kaatii 'scissors'). It's a bit strange that it's from a root of 'to cut', since I don't think of katars as generally being much use in cutting, but the sense may have generalised to 'knife', and then been applied to anything knife-like.

I think 'katara' is a red-herring. The devanagari orthography used for languages like Hindi, Nepali is a bit ambiguous in a few cases. The spelling kaTaar could in theory be pronounced either as kaTaar or kaTaara, and certainly in transcription might often be represented as 'katara'.
In any case, 'katar' could not be a diminuitive of 'katara' as far as I know, as Indo-Aryan diminuitives are actually formed by additional suffixes, or by changing vowels (usually -aa to -ii, i.e. masculine to feminine - e.g. Hindi rassaa 'rope', rassii 'string'). In other words the diminuitive of *karttaara is *karttaarii, and it is from this latter (diminuitive) root that words for 'scissors' are formed: e.g. Assamese kaatii (cited above), Gujarati kaat, kaatar 'scissors', etc.

So I don't know if 'katar' is correctly applied to the type of weapon it is often applied to in the West. My Hindi dictionary simply defines kaTaar as 'a dagger'. It seems it could be a case of overspecialisation of a term due to a misunderstanding by a Westerner. A bit like if someone pointed at a table knife and asked 'what's that called in English' and was told 'knife', but then restricted the meaning of 'knife' only to table-knives.

That said, the phrase kaTaar utaarnaa means in Hindi 'to stab with a dagger', which recalls the normal use of a katar. So perhaps the term became specialised indigenously and isn't just a European mistake. (plus a word can of course be used in both specialised and non-specialised ways, e.g. my wife, who is Nepalese, can use the term 'khukuri' to apply specifically to khukuris, but on occasion also just uses it to mean '(sharp) knife' in general).
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Old 25th May 2007, 08:35 PM   #4
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Hi Beoram,
Beautifully written and well thought out post! I think your observation on the association between katar and katara is nicely supported and I am inclined to agree with the red herring comment!
I think your explanations linguistically on the application of these terms is excellent and provides the kind of perspective that really helps in the study of these weapons. Thank you very much !
All the best,
Jim
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Old 8th February 2009, 08:38 PM   #5
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Default Egerton's error?

Hi, I came across your excellent site whilst doing some research and wondered if you would be interested to know that I have been led to believe that the initial error was GC Stone's as he states in 'A Glossary of the Construction, Decoration' etc.(from my notes, I don't have a copy in front of me) that "Jamdhar Katari ...under this name Egerton figures the Kafirs of the Hindu Kush" (pg. 314)
However in 'The Arms and Armour of India' Egerton places Jamdhar Katari as Nepalese weapons.
Stone also mentions the British Museum Handbook which shows a Katir of the Hindu Kush, and the error has apparently led to much confusion between two daggers which only have a similarity.
What do you think?
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Old 8th February 2009, 09:10 PM   #6
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Old 8th February 2009, 10:28 PM   #7
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Thank you for the link, yes the reference is to 'the knives' of the Kafir... I was trying so hard to be accurate too as that was my first post...
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Old 9th February 2009, 03:00 PM   #8
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Hello Help, welcome to the forum.

It is difficult to say when, what we call a katar, was called so. It could be Egerton, but it could also have been a number of others, like Hendley, Watt, Burton or someone else, all writing about the same time. The name could even be a lot older, and I am afraid we will never know for sure.
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Old 18th February 2009, 08:32 PM   #9
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Default Katir/Katari

Hi there,
Thanks for the reply Jens and the extra information. As I mentioned it's something I've been researching- not the entymological origin, so I'm probably in the wrong thread, my apologies for that - but the origin of the error of what is commonly known as Egerton's error. I obviously have a huge amount of respect for G.C. Stone's work, I just think the wrong person got the blame on this one.
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Old 5th January 2014, 03:28 PM   #10
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Default How Old is the Katar?

Hi All,
I was making a search for 'Katar', and read some quite old mails on the subject.
This made me remember an article I have written about the age of the katar, which I could trace back to Orissa in the tenth century. The first accepted written description of a katar is by Ibn Battuta in the 14th century, but in the article a drawing of the early one is shown, made by the renowned Indian historian Rajendralala Mitra (1823/24-1891).
Should anyone be interested in reading the article, it can be found here.
Arms & Armour, volume 10, no 1. Royal Armouries, Leeds 2013.
I cant put it on the forum as the publisher has the copyright - sorry.
Jens

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Old 6th January 2014, 08:36 AM   #11
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Hi All,

My two cents..!!!

Jamdhar -- originated from the Sanskrit word "Yama Daunstra" literally meeting tooth of Yama -- God of Death

Katar -- is a distorted form of "Kattarak" in Sanskrit -- which means a weapon carried on waist belts. This was used as a dress dagger in the Indian peninsula for a long time similar to the likes of Chillanum or Pesh Kabz.


I can't find anything at the moment to show how these words distorted and came into vogue.

Regards,
Bhushan
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Old 6th January 2014, 05:47 PM   #12
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Default The "Whats in a Word Debate".

http://www.edenics.net/english-word...s.aspx?word=CUT

Quote"Icelandic kuta (to cut with a knife) represents one of the oldest KT cut words. There's Latin caedere (to cut), but somehow there is no Indo-European alleged “root.”Unquote.


Salaams All. Trying to trace the word root and implications of influence of one system to another is probably impossible... see the reference above. The word cut appears in English to be derived out of cutten ...from The Scandanavian link. Kutti; knife / Kutte; cut. The mix ups occur due to similar sounding words that appear to be interesting, though, co-incidental. I would therefor rule out any direct linguistic link through to or from English. Accidental transmission, however, is always possible.

I would agree broadly with the above by Beoram and since it is probably from the ancient Sanscrit...it originated therein. What is interesting is whether Quaddara is associated since the link to Kattara seems evident. As Jim says Quote"I have always considered interesting that the Persian'quaddara' and the Omani 'kattara' seem to have thier terms so closely associated to the term for these daggers".Unquote. Personally I think it refers to the curved cutting blade in general terms thus it can be used for daggers or swords...(Then of course that has its problems since Katta have straight blades.) The problem is escaped since in Arabia we don't have that weapon...My final paragraph shows from where I think the quaddara/kattara appears on the screen. I think meaning "long curved cutter" in this sense.

What has to be remembered is that the transition would have been muddled, cloudy at best and unrelated technically and perhaps it is best to imagine the term in its red herring robes...An accident. The word thus becomes used in the Ethnographic sense. For example Omani people don't use the word Shamshir and often they mix up Kattara with Sayf. (but for good reasons..in the latter, Sayf, is the generic word for sword and anyway curved swords joined the debate quite late in the case of the big curved European blades around the early 18thC and a little earlier perhaps for curved Shamshir..Straight blades on the other hand had been around for 10 centuries before that (in Oman).

I refer finally to my opening cut (scuse pun) with another quote from the reference Quote"Arabic qadda is “he cut lengthwise.” Syriac has similar QD cutters. Arabic qasa (he cut, clipped) and Akkadian (ancient Mesopotamian) qasasu (to hew or cut off)."Unquote.

see also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akkadian_language

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.

Last edited by Ibrahiim al Balooshi : 7th January 2014 at 05:55 AM.
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Old 6th January 2014, 10:39 PM   #13
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Jens, it is fantastic that you posted this, and I look forward to reading your article on this long standing mystery of the 'katar' . I know this is a topic we have pursued for many years, with you always tenaciously researching through so many resources and venues, that your article would represent virtually the consummate knowledge on these to date .

Ibrahhim and Bhushan , thank you for the intriguing input on the constant conundrum of the etymology of this term. The so called 'Egerton' error is of course at the root of much of the dilemma in researching these as relying on contemporary narratives and accounts of periods far into history becomes extremely dangerous in drawing conclusions or theories. This is of course because a descriptive term can only imply what a item is to the modern reader, for semantics and transliterations over many years are among other linguistic matters are very much in play.

Getting back to the katar, that is the transverse gripped dagger distinctive to India, it is good to get back to the fascinating study and discussion of these unique daggers, and with Jens, whom I think is one of our foremost specialists on them.

Thank you Jens!!!

All the best,
Jim
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Old 8th January 2014, 04:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Jens, it is fantastic that you posted this, and I look forward to reading your article on this long standing mystery of the 'katar' . I know this is a topic we have pursued for many years, with you always tenaciously researching through so many resources and venues, that your article would represent virtually the consummate knowledge on these to date .

Ibrahhim and Bhushan , thank you for the intriguing input on the constant conundrum of the etymology of this term. The so called 'Egerton' error is of course at the root of much of the dilemma in researching these as relying on contemporary narratives and accounts of periods far into history becomes extremely dangerous in drawing conclusions or theories. This is of course because a descriptive term can only imply what a item is to the modern reader, for semantics and transliterations over many years are among other linguistic matters are very much in play.

Getting back to the katar, that is the transverse gripped dagger distinctive to India, it is good to get back to the fascinating study and discussion of these unique daggers, and with Jens, whom I think is one of our foremost specialists on them.

Thank you Jens!!!

All the best,
Jim


Salaams Jim... I really enjoyed the research on words. Thanks for the acknowledgement. It was a pleasure to assist.
Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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Old 8th January 2014, 04:13 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Jens, it is fantastic that you posted this, and I look forward to reading your article on this long standing mystery of the 'katar' . I know this is a topic we have pursued for many years, with you always tenaciously researching through so many resources and venues, that your article would represent virtually the consummate knowledge on these to date .

Ibrahhim and Bhushan , thank you for the intriguing input on the constant conundrum of the etymology of this term. The so called 'Egerton' error is of course at the root of much of the dilemma in researching these as relying on contemporary narratives and accounts of periods far into history becomes extremely dangerous in drawing conclusions or theories. This is of course because a descriptive term can only imply what a item is to the modern reader, for semantics and transliterations over many years are among other linguistic matters are very much in play.

Getting back to the katar, that is the transverse gripped dagger distinctive to India, it is good to get back to the fascinating study and discussion of these unique daggers, and with Jens, whom I think is one of our foremost specialists on them.

Thank you Jens!!!

All the best,
Jim


Salaams Jim... I really enjoyed the research on words. Thanks for the acknowledgement. It was a pleasure to assist.
Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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Old 8th January 2014, 07:02 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Help
However in 'The Arms and Armour of India' Egerton places Jamdhar Katari as Nepalese weapons.


Even funnier: Egerton's plate of Nepalese weapons has a picture of a typical Ottoman yataghan.

I think he grouped the weapons according to the place where he or his agents bought them. Had he managed to buy a Balinese Keris that somehow found its way to Afghanistan, we still might have argued about its true origin :-)

Well, he spent literally only a couple of years in India as a tourist and did not have Stone or suchlike as his reference book:-) Forgivable errors of a novice collector. Pity it acquired a patina of authority.
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Old 8th January 2014, 04:32 PM   #17
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Absolutely Ibrahiim, and one of the true conundrums of studying ethnographic arms is the confusion in terminology which constantly plague students using old resources and contemporary accounts. In many cases transliteration and regional semantics, particularly in India where so many languages and dialects are present, certain forms are called by varying terms.
Ariel, good note on Egerton, and actually his work was so well venerated as it was indeed a seminal work on ethnographic arms (it was 1880 while Burton came out in 1884). While other writers such as Walhouse and others had written articles slightly earlier, his work was far more comprehensive and overall actually reasonably accurate aside from these errors . I believe his book was a catalog but cannot recall the occasion, and the items were listed according to the donors or submissions.

It is interesting that early writers indeed relied on other works, and some errors in Burton (1884) are traced to Demmin (1877). I can recall an instance where an item was identified as Tibetan from the Oldman catalog (1909?) while the exact same sword was classified as from Benin in West Africa with an example collected by French donor to a museum in Belgium. Research revealed the item in Belgium was indeed African.
If I recall correctly Stone has a sword identified as Italian which is actually British cavalry 1780s.

I always maintain great respect for all authors of books and articles on the difficult topics of arms history and classifications, and I believe virtually all of the books carry certain disclaimers in the introductions, as well as sincere hopes for others to continue the research to resolve the inevitable errors.

I like to think that we are among those who sort of 'pick up the torch'
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Old 8th January 2014, 05:07 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ibrahiim al Balooshi
http://www.edenics.net/english-word...s.aspx?word=CUT

Quote"Icelandic kuta (to cut with a knife) represents one of the oldest KT cut words. There's Latin caedere (to cut), but somehow there is no Indo-European alleged “root.”Unquote.


Salaams All. Trying to trace the word root and implications of influence of one system to another is probably impossible... see the reference above. The word cut appears in English to be derived out of cutten ...from The Scandanavian link. Kutti; knife / Kutte; cut. The mix ups occur due to similar sounding words that appear to be interesting, though, co-incidental. I would therefor rule out any direct linguistic link through to or from English. Accidental transmission, however, is always possible.

I would agree broadly with the above by Beoram and since it is probably from the ancient Sanscrit...it originated therein. What is interesting is whether Quaddara is associated since the link to Kattara seems evident. As Jim says Quote"I have always considered interesting that the Persian'quaddara' and the Omani 'kattara' seem to have thier terms so closely associated to the term for these daggers".Unquote. Personally I think it refers to the curved cutting blade in general terms thus it can be used for daggers or swords...(Then of course that has its problems since Katta have straight blades.) The problem is escaped since in Arabia we don't have that weapon...My final paragraph shows from where I think the quaddara/kattara appears on the screen. I think meaning "long curved cutter" in this sense.

What has to be remembered is that the transition would have been muddled, cloudy at best and unrelated technically and perhaps it is best to imagine the term in its red herring robes...An accident. The word thus becomes used in the Ethnographic sense. For example Omani people don't use the word Shamshir and often they mix up Kattara with Sayf. (but for good reasons..in the latter, Sayf, is the generic word for sword and anyway curved swords joined the debate quite late in the case of the big curved European blades around the early 18thC and a little earlier perhaps for curved Shamshir..Straight blades on the other hand had been around for 10 centuries before that (in Oman).

I refer finally to my opening cut (scuse pun) with another quote from the reference Quote"Arabic qadda is “he cut lengthwise.” Syriac has similar QD cutters. Arabic qasa (he cut, clipped) and Akkadian (ancient Mesopotamian) qasasu (to hew or cut off)."Unquote.

see also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akkadian_language

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.


Salaams Ibrahiim!

Yes, the word "qudd" in Arabic means "to cut vertically", while the Arabic word "qutt" means "to cut horizontally". Some proponents of the theory claiming that Arabic was the mother tongue of all the other languages have cited the English word "cut" is derived from the Arabic word "qutt"; which means "cutting horizontally".

That being said, returning to Persian (which I've studied for two years in my faculty in 1997-1999), I can say there are many English and other Western and Northern European words that were derived from this language; among the countless words are:

Star, jungle, group, committee, mother, father, brother, daughter, restaurant, and skeleton.

But in 2001, while in Turkey, the Kurds there told me that the Kurdish language was the mother of the Persian language! They explained to me that the Kurdish words were the source from which the Persian words were derived. For example:

"Brother" in Persian is: "Broder"...In Kurdish, "Brother" is: "Bro"...the added "der" in Persian proves that Kurdish was the source.

The same for "mother" which is "mo" in Kurdish, and "moder" in Persian, and so on.

Just thought to share this with you!

Best regards,
Ahmed Helal Hussein
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Old 8th January 2014, 05:47 PM   #19
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Well said Jim. I believe that all who try to get something published, will try to get it as right as possible, but we all have to read about it from old sources.
Some can be lucky to get the right source, while others are unlucky and chooses the wrong source.
None of us lived at the time we try to tell about, so we can not be quite sure, which source is the right one, but we hope, after examination, that the one choosen is the right one - at least I do when I write an article.
AhmedH, it is very interesting what you write, and I do hope you will stay with us, and help us with this, for us, very difficult subject.
Jens
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Old 8th January 2014, 06:11 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AhmedH
Persian (which I've studied for two years in my faculty in 1997-1999), I can say there are many English and other Western and Northern European words that were derived from this language; among the countless words are:

Star, jungle, group, committee, mother, father, brother, daughter, restaurant, and skeleton.


Ahmed Helal Hussein


Well, despite being an Indo-European language, Persian is not the cradle of linguistic civilization: Jungle is from the Sanskrit "Jangala", uncultivated land, Skeleton is Greek "skeletos", dessicated body, "committee" is Latin " committere", to collect ( committee per se is an English legal term of 15th century for a person to whom something is entrusted), Group is Proto-Germanic Kruppaz, a lump, Restaurant is a French neologism for an eatery serving nutritious meat bouillons, allegedly " restoring" human vitality ( McDonalds being the shining example:-)), and finally Star, is pure Sanskrit ( star) or Hittite (Shittar), both languages predating Persian by a week or two :-) :-)
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Old 8th January 2014, 06:27 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Well, despite being an Indo-European language, Persian is not the cradle of linguistic civilization: Jungle is from the Sanskrit "Jangala", uncultivated land, Skeleton is Greek "skeletos", dessicated body, "committee" is Latin " committere", to collect ( committee per se is an English legal term of 15th century for a person to whom something is entrusted), Group is Proto-Germanic Kruppaz, a lump, Restaurant is a French neologism for an eatery serving nutritious meat bouillons, allegedly " restoring" human vitality ( McDonalds being the shining example:-)), and finally Star, is pure Sanskrit ( star) or Hittite (Shittar), both languages predating Persian by a week or two :-) :-)


Salaams Ariel,

I really can't tell which was earlier: Kurdish or Sanskrit, but I can tell you for sure that Persian predated Greek. Persian is really ancient. The other derivatives you've shown may have older sources; not necessarily those whom you mentioned, but you could be right regarding "restaurant" being taken by the Persians from the French.

Just have to make sure which is older: Kurdish or Sanskrit.

Thanks a lot for your clarifying post!

As ever,
Ahmed Helal Hussein
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Old 8th January 2014, 06:30 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jens Nordlunde
Well said Jim. I believe that all who try to get something published, will try to get it as right as possible, but we all have to read about it from old sources.
Some can be lucky to get the right source, while others are unlucky and chooses the wrong source.
None of us lived at the time we try to tell about, so we can not be quite sure, which source is the right one, but we hope, after examination, that the one choosen is the right one - at least I do when I write an article.
AhmedH, it is very interesting what you write, and I do hope you will stay with us, and help us with this, for us, very difficult subject.
Jens


Salaams Jens,

I'll stay in this forum as long as I'm alive and capable to participate. Also, I'll do my best in order to give help...and receive help too!

Thanks a lot for your generosity, Sir!

As ever,
Ahmed Helal Hussein
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Old 8th January 2014, 06:36 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Well, despite being an Indo-European language, Persian is not the cradle of linguistic civilization: Jungle is from the Sanskrit "Jangala", uncultivated land, Skeleton is Greek "skeletos", dessicated body, "committee" is Latin " committere", to collect ( committee per se is an English legal term of 15th century for a person to whom something is entrusted), Group is Proto-Germanic Kruppaz, a lump, Restaurant is a French neologism for an eatery serving nutritious meat bouillons, allegedly " restoring" human vitality ( McDonalds being the shining example:-)), and finally Star, is pure Sanskrit ( star) or Hittite (Shittar), both languages predating Persian by a week or two :-) :-)


BTW,

Skeleton: "Eskelet" (the Persian word) means "frame" and "skeleton"

Star: "S'taureh" (the Perisan word) may mean "that which shields or curtains the earth from the sky, or vice versa".

Say, did you know that the most ancient Persian was written from left to right?

As ever,
Ahmed
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Old 8th January 2014, 06:39 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Well, despite being an Indo-European language, Persian is not the cradle of linguistic civilization: Jungle is from the Sanskrit "Jangala", uncultivated land, Skeleton is Greek "skeletos", dessicated body, "committee" is Latin " committere", to collect ( committee per se is an English legal term of 15th century for a person to whom something is entrusted), Group is Proto-Germanic Kruppaz, a lump, Restaurant is a French neologism for an eatery serving nutritious meat bouillons, allegedly " restoring" human vitality ( McDonalds being the shining example:-)), and finally Star, is pure Sanskrit ( star) or Hittite (Shittar), both languages predating Persian by a week or two :-) :-)


As for "Jungle", it's pronounced like that in Persian: "Djungul"; exactly the same way we pronounce the word in English!
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Old 8th January 2014, 08:24 PM   #25
Jim McDougall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AhmedH
Salaams Jens,

I'll stay in this forum as long as I'm alive and capable to participate. Also, I'll do my best in order to give help...and receive help too!

Thanks a lot for your generosity, Sir!

As ever,
Ahmed Helal Hussein


Very nicely put Ahmed, and just wanted to say your positive approach and attitude is outstanding!

Jens, thank you for the kind words as well.
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Old 8th January 2014, 11:49 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Very nicely put Ahmed, and just wanted to say your positive approach and attitude is outstanding!

Jens, thank you for the kind words as well.


Salaams Jim,

It is I who am thankful to your very nice and encouraging words!

As ever,
Ahmed
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Old 9th January 2014, 03:16 AM   #27
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Hello,

For reference I attach a tree of the Indo-European languages.

Higher up the tree generally suggests older.

The oldest written Greek dates from ~1500 BCE, while the oldest Old Persian written evidence dates from ~500 BCE and is thought to have developed by ~1000 BCE. Similar dates for Vedic Sanskrit



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Old 9th January 2014, 05:28 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel
Hello,

For reference I attach a tree of the Indo-European languages.

Higher up the tree generally suggests older.

The oldest written Greek dates from ~1500 BCE, while the oldest Old Persian written evidence dates from ~500 BCE and is thought to have developed by ~1000 BCE. Similar dates for Vedic Sanskrit



Emanuel


Salaams Emanuel!

Thanks a lot for providing this table. Very informant indeed! However, one must be EXTREMELY careful regarding taking such information for granted. You'll find countless sites claiming that Vedic Sanskrit is the world's oldest language. The Persians date their language to at least 3100 BCE. The Arabs claim that their language was spoken by Adam, and they have some proof for that. Kurds claim that Noah (PBUH), his wife, three sons, and their wives, had their ship landing on Mount Goudi in Kurdistan (something affirmed in the Qur'an), and that the village they found after the deluge was called "Hushtan" (that of the eight people); that being in 3800 BCE.

I really believe that this is a very sensitive issue; since it may cause a lot of disagreement; not just between the creationists and the evolutionists, but between the creationists themselves... and also between the evolutionists themselves.

The fact is that I've listened, read, and even studied about this issue for longer than I should have done, and the truth is that I've heard so many claims regarding this oldest language debate until I was greatly confused. However, I must admit that I came out with very good information about many languages and how they influenced other languages.

To be honest, I found the Arab and Kurdish claims to be the most convincing, but others are free to challenge such claims.

Hope this clears up any confusion!

As ever,
Ahmed Helal Hussein
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Old 9th January 2014, 11:00 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by bhushan_lawate
Hi All,

My two cents..!!!

Jamdhar -- originated from the Sanskrit word "Yama Daunstra" literally meeting tooth of Yama -- God of Death

Katar -- is a distorted form of "Kattarak" in Sanskrit -- which means a weapon carried on waist belts. This was used as a dress dagger in the Indian peninsula for a long time similar to the likes of Chillanum or Pesh Kabz.


I can't find anything at the moment to show how these words distorted and came into vogue.

Regards,
Bhushan
It is interesting to see how many suggestions we have here, but to my opinion the suggestion Bhushan gives is the most plausible.
Jens
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Old 10th January 2014, 03:51 PM   #30
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So "katar" is still in error, but is not completely out of line in describing a smaller edged weapon with a Sanskrit etymology.

On the fascinating but completely off topic discussion on the origin of languages, I would like to point out that there is a reasonable conjecture linking a great flood to the spread of agriculture and animal husbandry.
For those who are interested in the interplay of mythology and history (neither of which has much to do with evolution), Göbekli Tepe in northern Turkey seems to be the first ritual site, and is within a few miles of where wheat and other ancient grains were developed at the end of the last ice age. This technology appears to have spread along the shores of the Black Sea, at the time, a shallow freshwater lake below sea level. People were living along the shores of this lake, perhaps in floating houses separated from the shore for protection. (Archeologists have found the remains of pylons for structures along the shore.) When the great ice dam at the Bosporus broke, it would have appeared that the whole world was flooded. This culture predates the civilizations in the Fertile Crescent and may have helped give rise to them through the spread of farming technology as refugees from the flood spread into new areas. They brought their stories and language with them, and are quite likely to have inspired the Babylonian flood myth that the Jews incorporated into their mythology during the Babylonian captivity. I would not be surprised if, along with some truly ancient words relating to animal husbandry, such as “yoke”, there was not also a word for cutting with a cutter.
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