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Origin of the word Yahud


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Ruhi_Rose
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« on: August 26, 2021, 07:40:01 am »



As-Salam Alaykum dear folks. 

Would anyone have any clues about the origin of the term "Yahud" (يهود), that is, Jews in English?

Need some feedback on this as it's one of the topics on our Zoom meeting this weekend. 


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« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2021, 09:38:36 am »



Walaykom As-Salam Sister.  No one has been able to clarify exactly from which language the term 'yahud' originated.  Many thinkers have come up with their own ideas and in the process they have created a lot of confusion as well.  Some have surmised that "yahud" (يهود) did not originate from Arabic. In that case, it would likely be from either Hebrew or Aramaic. This opinion could be right.

This word was also pronounced as "yehudah."  'Israel' was a large Hebrew clan divided into tribes in Egypt from the time of Pharaoh Ramesses II (who drowned in the sea) and earlier.   Judah was the largest tribe of the clan of Israel.  Much after the Exodus and after the death of  Prophet Solomon (pbuh), these Middle-Eastern or Hebrew Jews who were Semites in the Holy Land got divided into two  kingdoms - Northern Kingdom of Israel and Kingdom of Judah.  The term 'Yahud' refers to those who belonged of the Kingdom of Judah’. 

Now this bit is important to know.  Most words of Arabic, Aramaic and Hebrew beginning with "y" are pronounced with "j" in English and other European languages.  Therefore, Yahud or Yahudah becomes Judah in English.  It indicates that apparently the word "yahud" / "yahudah" came from either one of these three languages - Arabic, Aramaic or Hebrew.  But that cannot be confirmed. 

Since the word "Yahudah" is used by some Zionist Ashkenazi (European) Jews (who, by the way, are Caucasians and not Semites) as surnames or family names would suggest that this word likely originated either from Hebrew or Aramaic (which is similar to Hebrew). If it had originated from pure Arabic, the Zionist Jews would not claim it as their family name.  Knowing their mentality, that is doubtful.

With references to the Noble Quran:

In the expression “ هَادُوا” (haadu) in Surah Al-Hajj Verse 22:17 "إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَالَّذِينَ هَادُوا" ("Indeed, those who have believed, and those who were Jews") .. the word “هَادُوا“ (haadu) is past tense in plural which means "were Jews" .... 

The expression “هُودًا“ (hudan) in Surah Al-Baqarah Verse 2:135 is plural present. "وَقَالُوا كُونُوا هُودًا أَوْ نَصَارَىٰ"  ("And they said, 'Be Jews or Christians,' ") .. 

The above are the variations of “هَادَ” (haad), in accordance with the sentence in every Ayat or Verse.  There are also Verses in which the word  ” يهودي” (yahudi or yahuda) is used.  For example:

(V.5:51) يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الْيَهُودَ وَالنَّصَارَىٰ أَوْلِيَاءَ  
"O ye who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians for allies."

(V.3:67) مَا كَانَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ يَهُودِيًّا وَلَا نَصْرَانِيًّا
"Abraham was not a Jew, nor yet a Christian;"

(V.2:120) وَلَنْ تَرْضَىٰ عَنْكَ الْيَهُودُ وَلَا النَّصَارَىٰ
"And the Jews will not be pleased with you, nor will the Christians,"


From what I know, singular for “Jew” is Yahudi, the plural being Yahud or Hud.

The common opinion is that the word 'yahud' and its variations were taken into Arabic language from another spoken language (or languages) as they were heard being spoken.  This means, these words were not derived from any particular Arabic root word. It's likely that the root word was either in Hebrew or Aramaic.   But only Allah Almighty knows best.

Insh'Allah, I hope this helps you for your upcoming zoom discussion.

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Zainab_M
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« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2021, 09:59:18 am »



Very well explicated, Mash'Allah.   This was very informative and educational for me too. 

Good question and good response.  Alhumdulilah.
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« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2021, 10:00:09 am »



Very welcome Sister Zeynab.
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Ruhi_Rose
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« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2021, 10:16:27 am »



Thank you very much brother TS.  This was hugely helpful.  Alhumdulilah. 

So, in a nutshell, the term "yahud" is most probably not derived from Aramaic or Hebrew, not Arabic. And the variations of this term depend on the construction of the sentence.  Right?
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« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2021, 11:03:58 am »



Wa'salam.   Very well explained brother TS. 

Yes Sister Ruhi, in a nutshell it's pretty much as you concluded. 

Actually most Zionist Jews presently living in the land they stole think ‘yahud’ is an Arabic word for Jews.  After all, they are Europeans and thus their knowledge of Arabic is scant so they know very little.  Also, according to some Western sources, ‘yahud’ is an ancient derivative of some Persian term.  But I’m absolutely sure that is hogwash.

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« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2021, 11:06:48 am »



Thanks Sister Heba.

Yeah, sure, I get your point ..
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« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2021, 11:09:16 am »



You're welcome Sisters Ruhi and Heba.

I recall, a few years ago I read a piece by some massive fool in Quora saying "Yahud" refers to the people of Hud (tribe of Aad).
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« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2021, 11:12:48 am »



I recall, a few years ago I read a piece by some massive fool in Quora saying "Yahud" refers to the people of Hud (tribe of Aad).

That guy must be completely baloney!  Prophet Hud and the township of Aad came after Noah.   The word “yahud” and the proper noun Hud have no connection whatsoever.
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« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2021, 11:13:48 am »



Exactly ..
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« Reply #10 on: August 26, 2021, 11:15:26 am »



By the way, some time ago, someone in our fortnightly virtual meetings was asking if the Pashtuns of Afghanistan and Northern Pakistan (a lot of whom are presently Talibans) were Jews in ancient times before they became Muslims?
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« Reply #11 on: August 26, 2021, 11:18:45 am »



No, not true at all.  In ancient times, some Pashtuns in Afghanistan region were Buddhists and most were Zoroastrians like the ancient Persians.  Some historians claim Islam came to Afghanistan in the early 11th century via Mahmud Ghazni when he swept across the region from Kabul to the central part of South Asia.  It is true that Islam spread in many parts of South Asia after Mahmud Ghazni.  But in Afghanistan Islam came much earlier, most likely during the time of the Ommayad rulers – Hisham bin Abdel Malik and Umar bin Abdel Aziz - in the 7th century through Herat in Northern Afghanistan.  This was the time when Islam first arrived in Persia after kicking out the Sassanids in approximately 650 AD.
 
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« Reply #12 on: August 26, 2021, 11:23:14 am »



Thanks for this info Sister Zeynab.   That sounds quite accurate.
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