Jew

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See also: jew

English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Middle English Giw, Ju, from Old French juiu, Giu, gyu, from Latin iūdaeus, from Ancient Greek Ἰουδαῖος (Ioudaios), from Hebrew יהודי (Yehudi)

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

Jew (plural Jews)

  1. An adherent of Judaism.
    I don't have a religion, but my sister is a Jew and my brother is a Wiccan.
  2. A person who claims a cultural or ancestral connection to the Jewish people (see secular Jew).
    • William Shakespeare The Merchant of Venice (Act III, scene I)
      Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs
      dimensions, senses, affections, passions; fed with
      the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject
      to the same diseases, heal'd by the same means,
      warm'd and cool'd by the same winter and summer
      as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed?
      If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us,
      do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?

Usage notes[edit]

  • The Jewish community overall has a common religion, culture, identity, and ethnicity, but individual Jews do not necessarily share all of these; therefore, a person might be a Jew by one standpoint but not by another.
  • Additionally, there are some religious groups that identify themselves as part of Judaism, but that other Jewish groups might not; hence, use of the term Jew often depends on the speaker's opinions.
  • The noun Jew is not offensive, and the overwhelming majority of English-speaking Jews use the noun Jew to identify themselves.
  • That said, it has become offensive for historical reasons to use the word Jew attributively, in modifying another noun (as in "Jew lawyer"); the adjective Jewish is preferred for this purpose.
  • Additionally, the derived verbs jew and jew down are considered offensive, as they reflect stereotypes considered offensive.

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Verb[edit]

Jew (third-person singular simple present Jews, present participle Jewing, simple past and past participle Jewed)

  1. (offensive) Alternative capitalization of jew.