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At 08:54 +0200 on 23.9.1998, vardi wrote:


> Steg Belsky wrote:
> >
>
> >
> > I can't really help with this, but a friend of mine's lastname is Nemes,
> > Nemesh originally (pre-immigration).  It might have something to do with
> > it.
> >
> Nemesh in Hebrew is "freckle" - don't know if that helps.

There is a Hungarian surname Nemes /nEmES/.

> > Also, i just learned that, interestingly, Hebrew is one of the few(?)
> > languages to refer to Gypsys by their own name, _Romanim_ (from Romany
> > "romano").
>
> I've never heard that. The word I've heard is tzo'anim - IIRC, some
> obscure Biblical term chosen because of its similarity to Zigeune.

I read about some gypsies learning Sanskrit and beginning to detest the
traditional name of their people, since they erroneously thought it was
identical to Sanskrit loman/Roman "body hair"!  The people in question is
actually known as .Doma (with a retroflex .d) in Sanskrit -- which word in
turn is said to be of Austronesian origin, but they give no Austronesian
meaning, so I guess they just failed to get at an I.E. etymology and
assumed an Austronesian origin just because of the retroflex initial
consonant :(

BTW: 17th century Swedish authors "identified" the Swedes and Danes with
biblical Gog and Magog.  I hope modern Hebrew doesn't! ;)

/BP


B.Philip. Jonsson <[log in to unmask]>

Solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant (Tacitus)
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