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This topic is inspired in part by the DezNat thread but not in the way some may think. 

I'm wondering why the term Deseret is being used at all anymore. I don't think the reasoning can be reduced simply to fond sentimentality of BYs endeavor to name a land Deseret or to create a language for the members of that time.

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4 hours ago, longview said:

The term comes from Ether 2:3 And they did also carry with them deseret, which, by interpretation, is a honey bee; and thus they did carry with them swarms of bees, and all manner of that which was upon the face of the land, seeds of every kind.

There is a positive connotation associated with honey bees.  The image of vigorous diligent workers who are striving to honor their covenants with God.  The empire was very impressive with all its colonizing and economic prowess and amazing unity.  It was larger and more industrious than California and Texas combined before the Feds got jealous and cut the proto-republic down to size.

The honey bee is used in freemasonry and I believe that is why JS and BY used it on the temples such as the all seeing eye as well. And the Lion is used as well. http://freemasonry.bcy.ca/symbolism/bees.html

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7 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Related image

There are several interesting aspects of this symbol of old Deseret:  Our English word “desert” probably comes from Egyptian dšrt “red-land, desert” (as opposed to the Nile Valley, which was known as the fertile “Black-land” Kmt), the actual source of Latin desertum “desert.”  John Homans first pointed out that Book of Mormon deseret "honey bee" likely came from ancient Egyptian dšrt, a term incorporating the ancient Egyptian determinative sign of “bee” for the dšrt “red crown (of Lower Egypt)," which was also called the Bee Crown.  The problem is that this doesn't explain why the Jaredites (in the book of Ether), who came from north Mesopotamia, would incorporate an Egyptian term in their Sumero-Akkadian record.

In his 1922 translation of the Book of Mormon into Hebrew, Hirsch Miller simply used the Hebrew word for "honey bee," deborim, instead of trying to transliterate deseret.  The popular Hebrew name Deborah is also "Honey-bee."  One way to explain this oddity is that the Book of Mormon (including Ether) was composed and edited in Egyptian, so that, when Moroni came to the Jaredite word for "honey-bee," he simply used a close Egyptian equivalent to the original -- which may have been like the archaic Hebrew dbrt "honey-bee" (Joshua 19:12), which differs by only one consonant from the Egyptian.  Maybe the cursive Reformed Egyptian had a confluence of forms of -b- and -š- .

See Book of Mormon Central, “Where Does the Word ‘Deseret’ Come From? (Ether 2:3),” KnoWhy #236, Nov 22, 2016, online at https://knowhy.bookofmormoncentral.org/content/ where-does-the-word-%E2%80%9Cdeseret%E2%80%9D-come-from .

I was under the impression that deseret was pre-Babel, or in other words, Adamic.  Unless I am mistaken, the Jaredites retained their language (Ether 1:34-37).  Thus it would not be a case of the Jaredites using an Egyptian word, but the Egyptians using a modified Jaredite/Adamic word.  Or if Adamic was stripped from the Jaredites, that the Jaredite and Egyptian words have a common root.

The way language changes over time, sometimes we think that a word originates in one place when it actually originates in another.  For example, when Humphrey Davy discovered aluminum, he first called it alumium, but getting pushback from scientists in Europe, he changed it to aluminum.  It was at this point that the element came to the attention of the Americans and Canadians, and that is how it went down in North America.  After this, however, having gotten pushback again because European scientists didn't like how aluminum ended, since everything else ended with -ium, Davy changed it to aluminium, and that is how it went down in Europe, and later everywhere except North America.  And now the Brits think it was those darned Yanks who screwed it up by making up their own word for the metal.  The same thing happened with soccer.  In the early days, soccer was the word coined in certain British universities for the sport (an abbreviated form of "association football"), and the word then found its way over to North America, which is how it became known there.  Later, the abbreviated form was dropped in the UK, and the sport became known simply as "football".  And of course, the Americans get blamed for changing things, which they didn't.

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10 minutes ago, Stargazer said:

I was under the impression that deseret was pre-Babel, or in other words, Adamic.  Unless I am mistaken, the Jaredites retained their language (Ether 1:34-37).  Thus it would not be a case of the Jaredites using an Egyptian word, but the Egyptians using a modified Jaredite/Adamic word.  Or if Adamic was stripped from the Jaredites, that the Jaredite and Egyptian words have a common root............................

"Babel" is a late glosse in the Bible, so, using book of Ether terms, it is pre-Great Tower, since there is no Tower of Babel in Ether.  The Jaredite onomasticon is clearly Sumero-Akkadian, which represents no problem since Akkadian and Egyptian are part of the Afro-Asiatic language family, and have much in common in grammar and vocabulary.  Even languages in the same language family can be mutually unintelligible, so that speculation on what the original Jaredite language was must be based on actual observation and analysis of known languages -- which is very productive.

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4 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

"Babel" is a late glosse in the Bible, so, using book of Ether terms, it is pre-Great Tower, since there is no Tower of Babel in Ether.  The Jaredite onomasticon is clearly Sumero-Akkadian, which represents no problem since Akkadian and Egyptian are part of the Afro-Asiatic language family, and have much in common in grammar and vocabulary.  Even languages in the same language family can be mutually unintelligible, so that speculation on what the original Jaredite language was must be based on actual observation and analysis of known languages -- which is very productive.

Well, you'd know more about this than I!  

This made me think of a couple of YouTube channels focusing on language, NativLang and LangFocus. I thought you might find them of interest...

In particular, this video on NativLang about asymmetric intelligibility: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E042GHlUgoQ

Quote

 

Sometimes two languages are close enough that speakers of one understand the other. But it's not always fair. It's easier for Danish speakers to understand Swedish than the other way around. Same goes for Portuguese and Spanish. Many other languages, too. How come?  ~ Briefly ~ In this animation I'll share a couple cases of this strange uneven understanding. I'll tell you about a time I witnessed it myself, then take out a map and journey to Scandinavia, where this kind of thing is normal. With Scandinavian languages in hand, we'll think about the terms "mutual intelligibility" and "asymmetric intelligibility". We'll see three factors at work: attitude, exposure, language. Journeying into that last one, we'll look at results of studies that try to relate Scandinavia's linguistic differences to asymmetric difficulties in understanding. We'll hit a snag that requires a bit more research before concluding it's not entirely about the languages themselves. I'll end with some quick examples, including ones that patrons pointed out when they voted for this video.

 

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12 hours ago, Stargazer said:

................................

This made me think of a couple of YouTube channels focusing on language, NativLang and LangFocus. I thought you might find them of interest...

In particular, this video on NativLang about asymmetric intelligibility: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E042GHlUgoQ .

This is especially true of languages which have only recently separated.  Everyone in Scandanavia and Iceland, for example, used to speak Old Norse.  I knew a Swede who once told me that Danes spoke in a way which sounded like Swedish spoken with a mouth full of oatmeal mush.  Otherwise he had no trouble understanding them.  I also know a Portuguese speaker from Brazil who understands Spanish.  Apparently, it doesn't work the other way.

Sumerian (which had various dialects) saw its heyday in the 4th and 3rd millennia B.C.  After that it was a dead language used only by cuneiform scribes of other civilizations -- for the next two millennia.  After all, the Sumerians had invented writing.

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On 9/14/2019 at 10:12 AM, Valentinus said:

This topic is inspired in part by the DezNat thread but not in the way some may think. 

I'm wondering why the term Deseret is being used at all anymore. I don't think the reasoning can be reduced simply to fond sentimentality of BYs endeavor to name a land Deseret or to create a language for the members of that time.

Does it bother you that the name is still being used? 

Do you believe there is some below-the-surface motive for retaining it?

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22 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Related image

There are several interesting aspects of this symbol of old Deseret:  Our English word “desert” probably comes from Egyptian dšrt “red-land, desert” (as opposed to the Nile Valley, which was known as the fertile “Black-land” Kmt), the actual source of Latin desertum “desert.”  John Homans first pointed out that Book of Mormon deseret "honey bee" likely came from ancient Egyptian dšrt, a term incorporating the ancient Egyptian determinative sign of “bee” for the dšrt “red crown (of Lower Egypt)," which was also called the Bee Crown.  The problem is that this doesn't explain why the Jaredites (in the book of Ether), who came from north Mesopotamia, would incorporate an Egyptian term in their Sumero-Akkadian record.

In his 1922 translation of the Book of Mormon into Hebrew, Hirsch Miller simply used the Hebrew word for "honey bee," deborim, instead of trying to transliterate deseret.  The popular Hebrew name Deborah is also "Honey-bee."  One way to explain this oddity is that the Book of Mormon (including Ether) was composed and edited in Egyptian, so that, when Moroni came to the Jaredite word for "honey-bee," he simply used a close Egyptian equivalent to the original -- which may have been like the archaic Hebrew dbrt "honey-bee" (Joshua 19:12), which differs by only one consonant from the Egyptian.  Maybe the cursive Reformed Egyptian had a confluence of forms of -b- and -š- .

See Book of Mormon Central, “Where Does the Word ‘Deseret’ Come From? (Ether 2:3),” KnoWhy #236, Nov 22, 2016, online at https://knowhy.bookofmormoncentral.org/content/ where-does-the-word-%E2%80%9Cdeseret%E2%80%9D-come-from .

I'd be interested in seeing your reference for the term "dšrt, a term incorporating the ancient Egyptian determinative sign of “bee.”  Where have you found dšrt determined with the bee sign?

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13 hours ago, Steve Thompson said:

I'd be interested in seeing your reference for the term "dšrt, a term incorporating the ancient Egyptian determinative sign of “bee.”  Where have you found dšrt determined with the bee sign?

Actually, my claim (John Homans') was that deseret "honey bee" likely came from ancient Egyptian dšrt, a term incorporating the ancient Egyptian determinative sign of “bee” for the dšrt “red crown (of Lower Egypt)."  I did not mean that "dšrt determined with the bee sign," as you inferred, but my phrasing (in bold) wasn't entirely clear.  Allow me to clarify:

image.png.4620bb6d35f4211741aca38226f496c1.png

The dšrt “red crown (of Lower Egypt)” features the proboscus or antenna of the honey-bee at its top.  According to Gardiner (Sign List S 3, and §55), the Red Crown of Lower Egypt is an ideogram or determinative in dšrt “red crown,” and it can be substituted for bit “honey-bee” (L 2) “for superstitious reasons” (S 51:57), in the phrase sdЗwty bity (“treasurer of the king”) and in n-sw-bit (literally “he of the sedge and the honey-bee”) “King of Upper and Lower Egypt.”  At the same time, Gardiner (Sign List L 2) maintains that the honey-bee ideogram means bit “honey-bee,” and is used to spell bit “honey,” or may be used in bity “King of Lower Egypt.”  However, usage may go either way.  Note, for example, how the honey-bee varies with the dšrt “red crown,” in Pyramid Text §724 bit, and in the phrase n-sw-bit in Urkunden IV, 150, 12 (where the dšrt-crown takes the place of the usual bee).

Edited by Robert F. Smith
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4 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

Does it bother you that the name is still being used? 

Do you believe there is some below-the-surface motive for retaining it?

No, it doesn't bother me and it shouldn't. I'm not of the position to believe there is any motive. As I am no longer LDS I'm ultimately irrelevant where an opinion is concerned. 

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1 hour ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Actually, my claim (John Homan's) was that deseret "honey bee" likely came from ancient Egyptian dšrt, a term incorporating the ancient Egyptian determinative sign of “bee” for the dšrt “red crown (of Lower Egypt)."  I did not mean that "dšrt determined with the bee sign," as you inferred, but my phrasing (in bold) wasn't entirely clear.  Allow me to clarify:

image.png.4620bb6d35f4211741aca38226f496c1.png

The dšrt “red crown (of Lower Egypt)” features the proboscus or antenna of the honey-bee at its top.  According to Gardiner (Sign List S 3, and §55), the Red Crown of Lower Egypt is an ideogram or determinative in dšrt “red crown,” and it can be substituted for bit “honey-bee” (L 2) “for superstitious reasons” (S 51:57), in the phrase sdЗwty bity (“treasurer of the king”) and in n-sw-bit (literally “he of the sedge and the honey-bee”) “King of Upper and Lower Egypt.”  At the same time, Gardiner (Sign List L 2) maintains that the honey-bee ideogram means bit “honey-bee,” and is used to spell bit “honey,” or may be used in bity “King of Lower Egypt.”  However, usage may go either way.  Note, for example, how the honey-bee varies with the dšrt “red crown,” in Pyramid Text §724 bit, and in the phrase n-sw-bit in Urkunden IV, 150, 12 (where the dšrt-crown takes the place of the usual bee).

But where is the attestation of the word dšrt written with the determinative of a bee?   I don't see the relationship between dšrt and the bee you are suggesting.  The bee can be used to write the word for "red crown," but in that instance the word is bj.t.  In PT724 the red crown is the determinative to the word nj.t, and in the word bjty, "he of the bee," which Allen translates as "hereditary king."  There are several words for the red crown, including dšrt, w3djit, and nt, so every occurrence of the red crown can't be assumed to be read dšrt.

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8 hours ago, Steve Thompson said:

But where is the attestation of the word dšrt written with the determinative of a bee?   I don't see the relationship between dšrt and the bee you are suggesting.  The bee can be used to write the word for "red crown," but in that instance the word is bj.t.  In PT724 the red crown is the determinative to the word nj.t, and in the word bjty, "he of the bee," which Allen translates as "hereditary king."  There are several words for the red crown, including dšrt, w3djit, and nt, so every occurrence of the red crown can't be assumed to be read dšrt.

You are correct of course.  However, the association of the dšrt-crown for the usual bee in Urkunden IV, 150, 12, is merely one indicator of how bivalent these signs are.  So, if one is trying to find a source for deseret as "honey bee," that is a reasonable explanation for how and why Moroni may have presented it (even if we might have preferred Hebrew dbrt "honey-bee":).  In such a search, we are not constrained by prescriptive Egyptian grammar -- a thousand years after the last Nephite contact with the ancient Near East, the vagaries of consulting the Egyptian Bronze Plates of Laban nothwithstanding.

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On 9/14/2019 at 12:12 PM, Valentinus said:

This topic is inspired in part by the DezNat thread but not in the way some may think. 

I'm wondering why the term Deseret is being used at all anymore. I don't think the reasoning can be reduced simply to fond sentimentality of BYs endeavor to name a land Deseret or to create a language for the members of that time.

I think it is a great name for a great symbol: the honeybee symbolically reconciles the sting of death with the sweetness of eternal life. It takes a great deal of work and sacrifice to accomplish that in behalf of the entire human race, whcih of course Jesus (The King) accomplished.

Edited by CV75
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3 hours ago, CV75 said:

I think it is a great name for a great symbol: the honeybee symbolically reconciles the sting of death with the sweetness of eternal life. It takes a great deal of work and sacrifice to accomplish that in behalf of the entire human race, whcih of course Jesus (The King) accomplished.

I like that perspective. Thank you for sharing.

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1 hour ago, Valentinus said:

I like that perspective. Thank you for sharing.

Thank you. It reminds of Samson's riddle about finding honey in the carcass of a lion (eternal life out of the death of Jesus, the Lion (King) of Judah).

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/15/2019 at 12:02 AM, Robert F. Smith said:

"Babel" is a late glosse in the Bible, so, using book of Ether terms, it is pre-Great Tower, since there is no Tower of Babel in Ether.  The Jaredite onomasticon is clearly Sumero-Akkadian, which represents no problem since Akkadian and Egyptian are part of the Afro-Asiatic language family, and have much in common in grammar and vocabulary.  Even languages in the same language family can be mutually unintelligible, so that speculation on what the original Jaredite language was must be based on actual observation and analysis of known languages -- which is very productive.

IIRC Egyptian is a completely different branch from Semitic and has no real affinities with Akkadian. The Afro-Asiatic grouping is much broader than, say, indo-european where something like, e.g.  the proto-Celtic branch is recognisably related to proto-Italic.

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On 9/14/2019 at 10:12 AM, Valentinus said:

This topic is inspired in part by the DezNat thread but not in the way some may think. 

I'm wondering why the term Deseret is being used at all anymore. I don't think the reasoning can be reduced simply to fond sentimentality of BYs endeavor to name a land Deseret or to create a language for the members of that time.

Apart from a handful of Church-associated entities (Deseret Book, Deseret Industries, Deseret Ranch, Deseret News), it doesn't seem to be in much use.

Thanks,

-Smac

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53 minutes ago, MustardSeed said:

But it’s not my favorite hymn.  I could do without it. 

I prefer the traditional hymns over the Utah generated ones.  

I digress. No need to eliminate the word imo. 

I'm with you on the hymn thing.  

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42 minutes ago, bluebell said:

I'm with you on the hymn thing.  

One of my favorite hymns...Utah generated with mention of Deseret and allusion to its meaning....

Away beyond the prairies of the West,
Where exiled Saints in solitude were blest,
Where industry the seal of wealth has set
Amid the peaceful vales of Deseret,
Unheeding still the fiercest blasts that blow,
With tops encrusted by eternal snow,
The tow’ring peaks that shield the tender sod
Stand, types of freedom reared by nature’s God.

This lovely recording.......

https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;_ylt=AwrU8NUAMY5dn2sA97DBGOd_;_ylu=X3oDMTEyY3BiODhvBGNvbG8DZ3ExBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDQjY1NDdfMQRzZWMDc2M-?p=the+wintry+day+descending&back=https%3A%2F%2Fsearch.yahoo.com%2Fsearch%3Fp%3Dthe%2Bwintry%2Bday%2Bdescending%26ei%3DUTF-8&fr=ipad&turl=https%3A%2F%2Ftse1.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DOVP.EKvJajci_ukfyPTeW3aOrAHgFo%26amp%3Bpid%3DApi%26w%3D144%26h%3D77%26c%3D7&rurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DnSRCIuCEGHg&***=The+Wintry+Day+Descending+to+Its+Close&l=263&vid=75c20976a3379748c691cec7c1112695&sigr=11b29sts2&sigb=124jpu8bn&sigt=1163lj3g9&sigi=12olfatjd

Edited by Bernard Gui
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1 hour ago, Bernard Gui said:

One of my favorite hymns...Utah generated with mention of Deseret and allusion to its meaning....

Away beyond the prairies of the West,
Where exiled Saints in solitude were blest,
Where industry the seal of wealth has set
Amid the peaceful vales of Deseret,
Unheeding still the fiercest blasts that blow,
With tops encrusted by eternal snow,
The tow’ring peaks that shield the tender sod
Stand, types of freedom reared by nature’s God.

This lovely recording.......

https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;_ylt=AwrU8NUAMY5dn2sA97DBGOd_;_ylu=X3oDMTEyY3BiODhvBGNvbG8DZ3ExBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDQjY1NDdfMQRzZWMDc2M-?p=the+wintry+day+descending&back=https%3A%2F%2Fsearch.yahoo.com%2Fsearch%3Fp%3Dthe%2Bwintry%2Bday%2Bdescending%26ei%3DUTF-8&fr=ipad&turl=https%3A%2F%2Ftse1.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DOVP.EKvJajci_ukfyPTeW3aOrAHgFo%26amp%3Bpid%3DApi%26w%3D144%26h%3D77%26c%3D7&rurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DnSRCIuCEGHg&***=The+Wintry+Day+Descending+to+Its+Close&l=263&vid=75c20976a3379748c691cec7c1112695&sigr=11b29sts2&sigb=124jpu8bn&sigt=1163lj3g9&sigi=12olfatjd

Nice.  I of course referenced the all too cheesy “lovely” one. 

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1 hour ago, smac97 said:

Apart from a handful of Church-associated entities (Deseret Book, Deseret Industries, Deseret Ranch, Deseret News), it doesn't seem to be in much use.

Thanks,

-Smac

The term is evocative of peace, prosperity and tranquility.  Deseret is closely associated with Zion.  A people prepared to meet the Savior at the Second Coming

 

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