The House of David

"dawnbreak in the west"

Sunday, April 24, 2016


So now I'm reading another, shorter chapter in "Hérésies": Gilles Courtieu, Threskeia.

John of Damascus in Fount of Knowledge used this word at #100 for whatever-it-was that made up proto-Islam, when John was in actual contact with it in the late 70s / 690s. (He wrote the book some decades later, but in a monastery.)

Courtieu sees "religion" as too vague and, of course, too Latin. He argues for a Greek attempt at Islamicate dîn.

That's interesting; but we residents of the Duchy of Christoph Luxenberg know that the Qur'an contains two words that sound like "deen". The authentically Arabic dîn is Semitic, which consistently marks (Divine) Judgement. But threskeia is closer to late Sasanian (ie, Zoroastrian) dên, already a loanword in Syriac where it meant something more like "(ortho)doxy". For that I have used Kerr's essay translated as "Aramaisms in the Qur'an" which unfortunately does not track down when, exactly, this homophone entered the Semitic lexica.

Courtieu also has John seeing the Ishmaelite threskeia as "Forerunner To The Antichrist", a sort of John-the-Baptiser movement leading to something even worse. I wonder if the Damascene knew of the more-Semitic yawm al-dîni as well.

posted by Zimri on 08:44 | link | 0 comments

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