Mark Lightman wrote:
Isaac Fried, the Analytic and Synthetic Etymology of the Hebrew Language, p. 3: "The fundamental concept ער -רע of aggregation and separation, plurality and variability, is represented by the Hebrew letter ר, corresponding to the English letter r. Whenever this consonant is written or sounded in the lingual root, it signifies that the root contains this concept as one of its primary components."
It doesn’t work in English. Doesn’t work in Hebrew either.
Just open up a thesaurus, and it disproves this theory. Take for example, “separate”, the thesaurus …
“R” is one of the more used letters in the English language, yet notice the number of synonyms that don’t have an “r”.
Open a dictionary, how many words have an “r” that have nothing to do with separation?
Now to the thesaurus:
1 his personal life was separate from his job: unconnected, unrelated, different, distinct, discrete; detached, divorced, disconnected, independent, autonomous. ANTONYMS linked, interdependent.
2 the infirmary was separate from the school: set apart, detached, fenced off, cut off, segregated, isolated; free-standing, self-contained. ANTONYMS attached.
1 they separated two rioting mobs: split (up), break up, part, pull apart, divide; literary sunder. ANTONYMS unite, bring together.
2 the connectors can be separated: disconnect, detach, disengage, uncouple, unyoke, disunite, disjoin; split, divide, sever; disentangle. ANTONYMS join, connect, combine.
3 the wall that separates the two properties: partition, divide, come between, keep apart; bisect, intersect. ANTONYMS link, bridge.
4 the south aisle was separated off : isolate, partition off, section off; close off, shut off, cordon off, fence off, screen off.
5 they separated at the airport: part (company), go their separate ways, split up; say goodbye; disperse, disband, scatter. ANTONYMS meet.
6 the road separated: fork, divide, branch, bifurcate, diverge. ANTONYMS merge, converge.
7 her parents separated: split up, break up, part, be estranged, divorce. ANTONYMS get together, marry.
8 separate fact from fiction: isolate, set apart, segregate; distinguish, differentiate, dissociate; sort out, sift out, filter out, remove, weed out.
9 those who separate themselves from society: break away from, break with, secede from, withdraw from, leave, quit, dissociate oneself from, resign from, drop out of, repudiate, reject. ANTONYMS join.
Karl W. Randolph.