sondheim at panix.com
Tue Apr 27 04:15:15 CEST 2021
Usually, I'm not mining etymology, but then there's my
A Concise Dictionary of Akkadian, edited by Black, George, and
Postgate, 2nd corrected printing, Harrassowitz Verlag, 2000, pp.
143-145, and forgive me if I leave out the diacritical marks in
lower ascii as well as many other details indicated by changing
type- faces and abbreviations; you can of course consult the
original volume if you find it necessary in your Akkadian
Let's start with
kamalu, to be(come) angry with (= itti), heading towards "is
angered" and "become angry." And so forth. This is on 143; the
next page becomes really interesting -
kamaru, "to defeat"
kamaru(m), "to pile up, accumulate" reference also to dates,
property, to "pile up permanently" wealth, "secrete poison,"
"come in crowds"
kamasu(m) I. "to gather in" "deposit" tablet, god, people,
animals; "consign" corpse to tomb "deposit" wisdom in someone "be
gathered in"; of journey, shearing, "be finished, wound up"
kamasu(m) II. "to kneel, squat down" "kneel, crouch" before
god, king; of invalid; of part of body; of cow; "make to kneel,
squat" in cult, enemy in submission "constantly be submissive:
kamasu "rest period"
kamatis "to outside"
kamiru (a noble)
kamisum "one who kneels
kamis "in a bound state"
kamitis "in bondage"
kamitu II "(kind of) ring"
kamkammatu(m) "ring" round moon
kamkissu (part of body of animal)
kammu(m) "board, plaque" "(writing) tablet, board", "(text on)
writing tablet", "plaque" of gold etc. as ornament, "board" for
smoothing bricks, of wood, iron; of pine
kamru "piled up" of stored dates; of heaps of rubble
kamrutu "state of rubble"
kamsu "squatting, crouching" of animal
kamu(m) "bound" of man, prison; the "bound" gods
kamu(m) "to bind" enemy, land;god, demon bird, transf. of
spells, diseases, of feature of liver
kamum pl. "fetters"
kamumu(m) "cumin" as spice, drug
kamunu (a fungus) in steppe, mountain; on wall; in pot
soon followed by
kanaku(m) "to seal" door, container; silver, etc.: tablet,
letter, "transfer to someone by sealing (document)"; as magical
act, with blood; "is cryptic"; "make someone seal"; make someone
draw up sealed document" "be sealed" of grain, textile, tablet;
"be attested by sealed document"
and finally for my interest
kananu(m) "to roll up" "wrap up" silver, figurine; of part of
body "curl up, contract"; "tuck up" garment; of snake, reflexive,
"coil up" of parts of body; of snake "contract" part of body; "is
curled up" like dog; of horns of moon "repeatedly bow" down" of
foot "contract" (itself) of parts of body; of invalid
So this is a miss/missed/mis-reading of definitions drawn from
numerous other languages of course, including Aramaic, Hittite,
Hurrian, Indo-Iranian, Egyptian, Babylonian, Kassite, Old
Akkadian, Mitanni, West Semitic, Ugaritic, Sanskrit, Elamite, and
What drew my attention: anger, curl, squat, accumulate,
obeisance, fungus, bondage; kanaku and kananu are surely
unrelated but of interest "kamum" and "cumin" of course.
Elsewhere "hubbub" in English seems related to "hubbu,"
buzzing, whining, New Babylonian, "of noise in head, lamentation,
hababu." From the Internet: "Origin. Mid 16th century perhaps of
Irish origin; compare with the Irish exclamations abab, ab, used
in battle cries." But I think not, that these interjectional
words might have deeper roots.
Repetitions resonate and I've often written about or utilized
the words stutter, spatter, sputter, scatter, smatter(ing),
spitter, splatter, and so forth, there's almost no stopping this,
I assume Indo-European to the rescue. I did forget litter,
lather, but I'd rather have my druthers.
Second partings, the reasonings for all these -
Vocabularies of denigration, vocabularies of effusion,
connotations, yes, but also tendrils, scatterings - roots and
meristemation which scatter, disappear as into the thin air of
(Tran duc Thao) gesture; effusion and denigration, fear and
flight, gatherings, appear first; etymology is replete with deep
and immovable inexactitude. Even in mathematics, on the level of
the symbol, there are certain appearances, for example, of
collapsed notations in physics that delight, but their roots are
exact. Physics and science in general increasingly rely on
exactitude so that scatter and splatter may occupy their own
realms, laws, legisations, congresses, committees, and labs.
We don't live in that world; we live in worlds of the
indescribable; everything else - and there is everything else -
Peirce, Irigaray, Lacan, Kristeva, artists and musicians and
writers (however defined) have known better; I myself put it to
the test/text in everything I write. To the extent that the
symbol or word is exact, it loses its meaning and participates in
untoward and contrary stricture; to the extent that meaning is
lost, meaning is gained. Thus for example there is no "act of
reading" except for the superficial tabulation or look up";
instead there is culturally and biologically and ethologically
diffused multiple readings, scannings, summarings, memories
(across all ontologies, worlds and worlds of novels for example)
that never ultimately cohere or coagulate, we live, not within a
world of part-objects, but a world of partially-defined definings
- and smattering might be as good a gathering as any to think of
and through these to smattering that might be as good a gathering
or any to think of and through these to smattering that might be
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