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Click to Expand/Collapse OptionEtymArab
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budd (2) بُدّ , pl. bidadaẗ , ʔabdād
ID ... • Sw – • BP – • APD ... • Aut SG
idol – WehrCowan1979.
The current opinion is that the word entered Ar as a borrowing from Pers but ‘idol’, but may ultimately (via Sogd?) be related to Indian words for Buddha. There is, however, also other research that puts it in a Sem, and even a wider AfrAs, context, see COGN and DISC below.
▪ Against the current opinion, OrelStolbova1994 and Militarev2006 do not assume a Pers but a Sem < AfrAs origin. Inside Sem, they put Ar budd ‘idol’ (and bdd ‘to cause dammage’) together with Hbr bad ‘oracle priest’, Gz budā , Tña Amh Har Gur buda ‘one who causes harm by means of the evil eye’; cf. also Te bozzay ‘magician’; also Amor baddum ‘official’ seems to be related. Cf. also Hbr Aram Ar MSA *bdʔ ‘to lie, invent, talk loosely’. – As outside Sem evidence, the authors list: bádǝ̀-rà ‘sorcerer’ in a WCh lang; bǝ́bǝ́ḍé , bùbbùḍḍe ‘curse’ in some ECh idioms; Bilin bawda ‘witch-doctor; verwolf’ as well as buda ‘id.’ in two other CCush (Agaw) langs; Sa budā , Af buda ‘witch-doctor’; (LEC) Som bida , Or bawda ‘witch-doctor’; Sid bud-akko ‘who has evil eye’, as well as buda , būdo in 3 other HEC langs, meaning either ‘who has evil eye’ or ‘potter’; budo ‘witch-doctor’ in 2 Omot langs.
▪ Rolland2014: From Pers but ‘idol’1 , IE *bʰeu‑ ‘to be, exist’. The reduplication of the final consonant is regular. The change from Pers t to Ar d is unusual but can be explained as a result of the influence of →budd_1 ‘way out, escape’.
▪ In contrast, Dozy1881 thinks that, »[d]ans le sens d’‘idole’, budd ne semble être rien autre chose que Bouddha «. In the same vein, Carra de Vaux states that »budd denotes the Buddha« in authors such as al-Ǧāḥiẓ, al-Masʕūdī, al-Bīrūnī, or al-Šahrastānī; »[t]he principal instance of the use of the word in the sense of ‘pagoda’ occurs in a passage in the Merveilles de l’Inde ;2 this sense [however] appears to be the rarest, although given as the primary sense in the LA3
▪ In Tu, the word appears in two forms, but (~ put ) and büt (~ püt ). According to Nişanyan (13Okt2014), both ultimately go back to Skr buddha . büt is attested already in Uyghur texts before 1000 CE, meaning ‘Buddha’ (some Turkic tribes had adopted Buddhism in C10-11). In contrast, the form but (~ put ) is said to be taken from Pers but , from Soghd bud ‘Buddha, Buddha statue or temple’, from Skr.
▪ Neither OrelStolbova1994 nor Militarev2006 (in StarLing) see the Pers connection. Instead, the latter reconstructs (#1930) Sem *ba/ud‑ ‘oracle priest; pagan temple, idoleum; one who causes harm by means of the evil eye’, WCh *bad‑ (?) ‘sorcerer’, ECh *bu-buḍ‑ ‘curse’,4 CCush (Agaw) *bawVd‑ ‘witch-doctor; verwolf’, SaAf *bud‑ , LEC *bawVd‑ , Omot *bud‑ ‘witch-doctor’ , HECush *bud‑ ‘who has evil eye; potter’.5 Based on the Sem and extra-Sem material, the author reconstructs AfrAs *bawVd‑ ‘sorcerer’.
1. Steingass1892: ‘idol, image, any figure that is an object of adoration; the beloved; God (in the language of the Sūfīs; truth)’. 2. ʕAǧāʔib al-Hind , ed./trans. M. Devic, 5; Mémorial J. Sauvaget , i: 192 3. B. Carra de Vaux, art. “budd”, in EI² . 4. showing reduplication and unexpected emphatic ‑ḍ‑ . 5. However, the Cush and Omot forms may be Ethiopisms.
▪ Engl Buddha , which entered the language by the 1680s, is certainly not taken from Ar budd . It may however go back, via Pali, to the same Skr word, meaning ‘awakened, enlightened’, to which also Ar budd ultimately can be traced back. The Pali word is a PP of budh ‘to awake, know, perceive’, related to Skr bodhati ‘is awake, observes, understands’ – EtymOnline.
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