Dutch Treat (1885)

James A. Landau JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Wed Nov 6 21:16:26 UTC 2002

In a message dated 11/6/02 1:58:33 PM Eastern Standard Time,
maberry at U.WASHINGTON.EDU writes:

> Lane's Arabic-English Lexicon has this under barbar, "a foreign word
>  [probably of African origin the primary form of which is the source of
>  [Greek] Barbaros,

By "African" I can only surmise that Lane means what used to be called
"Hamitic", that is, the branch of the Afro-Asiatic (as it is now called)
language family which includes ancient Egyptian and other languages of the
western short of the Red Sea.  Now the Greeks back to Mycenean times were
familiar with Egypt and could easily have added some Egyptian words to Greek.
 We now have the interesting suggestion that the Greeks adopted a foreign
word to use as a disparaging term for foreigners.

It's possible.  At one time Arabs referred to Europeans as "Franks" due to
some interesting experiences with French Crusaders.

      - Jim Landau

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