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Nephi


Olavarria

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In Egyptian, Nfr means "good, fine, goodly"(1). If Nephi is an Egyptian name then it would have to be the Hebrew transliteration of Nfr. Was it ever so? A clue to that answer is how K3-nfr.w is transliterated on the Aramaic papyri of Elephantine(2).

Aramaic is a sister language of Hebrew, just as Spanish is to Italian. K3-nfr.w, in Aramaic, is transliterated as Knufi(?????). Nufi, Nephi...it's anyone's guess what Nfr would have sounded like if transliterated into Hebrew.

In Greek magical papyri, Nfr-htp is transliterated as Nephotes(3). Once again, the final "r" is dropped, showing that Nfr to Nephi is possible.

Nephi was an ancient Hebrew; and ancient Hebrew poets made frequent use of puns on the proper names of people and places(4). Many of these puns are based on the etymologies of the names being used. In Hosea 12:2-3, the author plays with

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I'm actually less and less certain of that.

Looking at Daniel Schwartz's new Hebrew translation of 2nd Maccabees, Nephi is written with a phi and a theta, the theta is how tav's are rendered. Schwartz's translation has it as naftha- oil.

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I'm actually less and less certain of that.

Looking at Daniel Schwartz's new Hebrew translation of 2nd Maccabees, Nephi is written with a phi and a theta, the theta is how tav's are rendered. Schwartz's translation has it as naftha- oil.

I agree. I seriously doubt Lehi and Sariah would name their son after petroleum. Egyptian seems like the best candidate.

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i would prefer a Semetic source for Nephi, but Egyptian's all we got.

Not necessarily.

Nafi/Nabi is another possible cognate source. The Semitic term for 'prophet.'

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On the other hand, wasn't the legendary daughter of Zedekiah, Tephi, a Jewish name?

If someone can find a source mentioning her which predates the 1860's, I'd be willing to give the legends surrounding her some semblance of credibility.

Any takers?

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Not necessarily.

Nafi/Nabi is another possible cognate source. The Semitic term for 'prophet.'

At what points in history was the ?????? pronounced Nafi? Are we in the right ballpark with 7th-6th C BCE?

BTW . . . I like this possibility, especially for its implications for the last syllable of Nephihah.

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Not necessarily.

Nafi/Nabi is another possible cognate source. The Semitic term for 'prophet.'

Perhaps an Arabic speaker would care to comment, but I've never heard them pronounce it as nafi, only nabi or nebi. Hebrew is usually navi. The b/v is too strong to be a f.

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Perhaps an Arabic speaker would care to comment, but I've never heard them pronounce it as nafi, only nabi or nebi. Hebrew is usually navi. The b/v is too strong to be a f.

Yes . . . but what about pre-Exilic pronunciation?

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