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orion sectually explicit (etymologies once more!)

Judith wrote:

>Heb. *kat*, of course is the sameword as mishnaic *kat* meaning class or
>division.   Like sect in Latin it comes from a word meaning to divide or
>cut (pure coincidence that cut and *kat* sound the same, though!).*kat*

Hm. I had thought that "sect" and "section"  had different sources (a sect
was a group "following" a certain way of life, from sequi "follow") but
I'm hardly an indo-europeanist. 

What word for "divide" or "cut" do you think "kat" comes from? KTT isn't
so much "cut" as "to crush by beating." Even if one concedes the semantic
development, I can't recall any qal- type nouns derived from geminate
roots (if KTT is indeed the root you are thinking of).Furthermore,
considering the two plurals kitti:m and kitto:t, the attenuation of a to i
and the spontaneous gemination in the plural seem suspicious. I'm aware
that this derivation is in the literature, but I don't find it convincing.

An etymology that I have not seen proposed is as a loan from Akkadian
kintu "family" (written both "kintu" and "kimtu" but probably expressing
only /kintu/; for the principle, see I.J. Gelb's "A Note on
Morphographemics" [Melanges Marcel Cohen pp. 73ff];  cf. kina:tu and its
Aramaic offspring kna:t, from which some, with great difficulty, derive

The move from "family" to "group, class, type" is not hard, and this
derivation has the advantage of explaining the morphology perfectly (kint-
>* kitt > {Philippi's Law} *katt > {reduction of final double consonants]
kat, with the plural preserving a more primitive form).

>What Jastrow calls Midrash "Tillim" is, in fact, Midrash Tehillim.  I've 
>no idea why he abbreviates it in that strange way!   

Because it's called Midrash Tillim.  AND it's called Midrash Tehilim. I
think the contracted form (from Tehilim, of course!) may actually be more
common (see references in Jastrow himself, for starters). 

>The citation from Jastrow begins with the word "elu", not the word "ilu",
>course -- but no doubt this was a typo on the part of Seth Sanders. 

Indeed it was! 

Seth Sanders