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This Proto-Semitic entry contains reconstructed words and roots. As such, the term(s) in this entry are not directly attested, but are hypothesized to have existed based on comparative evidence.



From Proto-Afroasiatic *ʔab-, ultimately an onomatopoeic nursery word. Cognate with Egyptian ꜣbwt, Proto-Berber *ʔabb, Hausa uba, Somali aabo, Afar abba.


*ʔabw- m (plural *ʔaban-)

  1. father

Reconstruction notes[edit]

The final consonant of the stem is inferred based on construct forms, but Kogan reconstructs this item as *ʔab- instead.

Coordinate terms[edit]


Derived terms[edit]

  • East Semitic:
    • Akkadian: 𒀊 (/abu/)
  • West Semitic:
    • Central Semitic:
      • Arabic: أَب(ʾab) (see there for further descendants)
      • Northwest Semitic:
    • South Semitic:


  • Kogan, Leonid, Genealogical Classification of Semitic. The Lexical Isoglosses, Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 2015, →ISBN
  • Huehnergard, John, “Proto-Semitic”, in Huehnergard, John and Na'ama Pat-El, editors, The Semitic Languages, 2nd edition, Routledge, 2019, →ISBN