LINGUIST List 12.2312

Wed Sep 19 2001

Qs: Armenian/Sky&Earth, Taliban Word Origin

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  1. R. Viredaz, "Sky" & "Earth" as 'Halves'
  2. Robert Beard, Source language/"Taliban"

Message 1: "Sky" & "Earth" as 'Halves'

Date: Mon, 17 Sep 2001 13:37:27 +0200
From: R. Viredaz <>
Subject: "Sky" & "Earth" as 'Halves'

Dear Linguists, 
It has been suggested that the Armenian words _erkin_ 'sky' and
_erkir_ 'earth' are akin to Arm. _erku_ 'two' (PIE _*dwo:_,
compositional form _*dwi-_), because heaven and earth were conceived
as the two halves of the universe (as in Rgveda 2, 27 5, _ubha:'v
a'rdhau_): A. Meillet, Melanges Boisacq, 1937, pp. 1-2. But do you
actually know languages - where the words for 'sky, heaven' and/or
'earth', by their etymology, meay" 'halves', 'twins', 'spouses' or
the like ? - where the word for 'half' is derived from the word for
'two' ? (the only example I know is Esperanto duono from du, but I
mean natural languages).

Thanks to everybody for their help,

Remy Viredaz
1, rue Chandieu
1202 Geneva
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Message 2: Source language/"Taliban"

Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 14:52:32 +0000
From: Robert Beard <>
Subject: Source language/"Taliban"

I was wondering which language "Taliban" comes from. I believe it is
Farsi/Persian but am not sure. It was certainly borrowed from Arabic
but is the plural ending Farsi or Pushto?

Please respond directly to me at: 


- RB 

Robert Beard, Professor Emeritus
Russian & Linguistics
Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA 17837
Telephone: 570-524-9240
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