[Lexicog] "lamb" as a metaphor

Fritz Goerling Fritz_Goerling at SIL.ORG
Fri May 7 18:06:41 UTC 2004

I like how "turning into a lamb" is used in modern Greek to translate the
idea of "taming."
One can certainly not make a lamb out of a ram, but obviously a lamb out of
a shrew. :-)
Can one "make a lamb"  out of a wild horse or a ferocious animal in modern
Greek, i.e. would you use the expression for taming, domesticating?

On this list I did not mention the religious uses on purpose (on the Bible
translation list I did).
A non-prototypical use of "Lamb (of God) " as a title for Jesus is found in
Revelation 6:16
which speaks about the wrath of the Lamb who has risen to power at the right
hand of God.
Food for thought!

Fritz Goerling

  In Modern Greek the word for lamb (/arnm/) is used to refer to someone as
tame, calm, or peaceful (cf. the Greek translation of the 1967 film The
Taming of the Shrew as lit. The Shrew who became a little lamb). In this
sense the word is prototypically used in the diminutive (/arnaki/) and
usually as a predicative (s.o. becomes (= is turned into) a little lamb).
Contextually it is typically contrasted with a previous situation where
he/she was wild, mad, unpleasant, etc.

  The religious uses which have been mentioned exist also, of course, also
in Modern Greek.

  Ekaterini Stathi

  Fritz Goerling <Fritz_Goerling at sil.org> wrote:

    What is associated with the image "lamb" when predicated of a person
    in your language (not only English?
    I can only think of "pious as a lamb" (lammfromm) in German.
    To my knowledge in English you can say "as innocent as a lamb"
    or "as docile/quiet/obedient as a lamb". And it can be
    used with reference to someone who you are fond of and who
    is gentle and lovable.

    Fritz Goerling


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