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Jacob or James?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions & Translations' started by franklinmonroe, Apr 22, 2014.

  1. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe Active Member

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    Please explain why Iakōbos (Strong's #2385) is translated as "James" rather than "Jacob". For example in James 1:1 (TR Greek) --
    Ἰάκωβος θεοῦ καὶ κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ δοῦλος ταῖς δώδεκα φυλαῖς ταῖς ἐν τῇ διασπορᾷ χαίρειν
     
  2. MNJacob

    MNJacob Member

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    I knew that the French were involved in this somewhere.

    from Wiki -
    "James came into English language from the Old French variation James[1] of the late Latin name Iacomus. This was a dialect variant of Iacobus, from the New Testament Greek Ἰάκωβος (Iákōbos), from Hebrew יעקב (Yaʻaqov) (Jacob). The development Iacobus > Iacomus is likely a result of nasalization of the o and assimilation to the following b (i.e., intermediate *Iacombus) followed by simplification of the cluster mb through loss of the b. Diminutives include: Jim, Jimmy, Jimmie, Jamie, Jimbo, and others."
     
  3. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe Active Member

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    Thanks. If I understand this correctly, "James" comes to English through French, and the French came out of the Latin.

    So, why then do English Bible translations (especially literal/formal ones) that are based upon Greek texts not render this name "Jacob"? They have nothing to do with French or Latin. Is "James" simply a tradition?
     
    #3 franklinmonroe, Apr 23, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2014
  4. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson Administrator
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    Simple, by the time the NT was translated into English. The names had pretty much bifurated. In the English of the period, Jacob was pretty much restricted to Jewish males. James was the form of the name used by non-Jews.
     
  5. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    No offense, but I think you mean "bifurcated" SquRob.
     
  6. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    So when Mary, the mother of Yes - u -ah, called the half brother, she yelled I - co - boss. No matter how sad it is that the translators betrayed the phonetic (transliterated) names, we have all those commentaries of Jesus and James, so we are stuck with them. But that does not justify never whittling away at all the mistakes in our modern translations. But first thing first, the translations need to be footnoted with corrections, i.e. James * (*probably pronounced Icoboss) or whatever the native tongue actually sounds like.

    Clinging as they do, for market reasons, to tradition over accuracy, certainly has no merit.
     
  7. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson Administrator
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    Yeup, spell check doesn't work with this site and Firefox.
     
  8. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
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    The name Ya'acov in Hebrew is Iakobos in Greek, James in English, Santiago in Spanish, Jacques in French, Jakobus in German.

    In some languages (notably in Hebrew) the sounds for "b" and "v" are similar.
    Hebrew has no letter or sound for "J".

    The Hebrew and Greek versions of the name look quite similar but when the Greek Iakobos was translated into Latin it had turned into Iacobus and later Iacomus.

    When the French language developed from Latin, Iacomus was shortened to Gemmes.

    The English James is derived from that French version.

    In England, Jacob was mainly regarded as a Jewish name during the Middle Ages, though the variant James was used among Christians.

    Rob
     
    #8 Deacon, Apr 25, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2014
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