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By Isaac Mozeson

Can You CANOE ?


Many words grew from the primeval stalk or CANE, the קנה QaNeH (reed, stalk, stem)..
The hollow CANE gave us CANAL, CANASTA, CANNON, CANOE, CHANNEL and the common CAN and CANISTER.
Non-hollow CANES from קנה QaNeH (stalk, stem). include the kind an old persson might walk with or a young person might associate with CANDY.

A few C-A-N entries will help you follow this flourishing stem:

CAN(DY) QaNeH Koof-Noon-Hey

CON-EH __ ____קנה__________[KNH]

ROOTS: CANDY is an acknowledged borrowing from Arabic qandi (candied). The word developed from the CANE of sugar cane or the קנה QaNeH (stalk - Genesis 41:5).


CANE Koof-Noon-Hey QaNeH


ROOTS: The so-called Indo-European (IE) “root” kanna (a reed) is admitted to be "of Semitic origin." Babylo-Assyrian qanu (pipe) is cited rather than קנה QaNeH (reed, tube, stem, the "stalk" of Genesis 41:5, the "shaft" of Exodus 25:31, and the "branch" of Exodus 25:32).

כנה KaNeH is a stalk or root (Psalms 80:16) and כן KaiN is a base or foot (of a laver). The K-N sound means a support column or shaft.

BRANCHES: Directly attributed to Greek kanna (reed, cane), the American Heritage Dict. (AHD) only lists 7 cognates of CANE: CANAL, CANISTER, CANNELON, CANYON, CHANNEL, KENNEL, and (with Greek kanon meaning rod or rule) CANON- as in Biblical CANONIZATION.

Most C-A-N- words in English derive from the versatile Hebrew etymon above, a CAN is a tubular container or CANISTER. Japanese kan (can) seems to be yet another modern borrowing from English. But, besides the pipe and can which are hollow, there is the Chinese kan, rod. So both Asian words can be plucked from the same קנה QaNeH.

קנקן QaQaN means a pre-CAN container, and is an Arabic extension of קנה QaNeH (tube).

Longer and larger "cans" include the CANNIKIN, CANNON, CANNULA and CANOPICURN. Weaving the K-N reed into larger containers will yield the CANASTA (basket, and later card game) and CANEPHOROS. Weaving rushes in wider, flatter shapes will produce a CANAPE, CANCEL (lattice, grating-thus a verb of crossing out), and CANOPY.

To CANE is also a verb of beating with a stick. Just ask a litterbug in Singapore.

CANEBRAKE, CANELLA and CANEPHOROS are more words linked to reeds and woven wicker (from reeds). An Arabic quonboula is a CANNONBALL.

CANAPE and CANOPY (see CANOPY) recall כנף KaNaF (extremity, wing)—a cousin of קנה QaNeH (branch, extension). Other possibilities include CANT HOOK, CANTEEN, CANTHUS, CANTINA, CANTILEVER, CANTLE, CANTO (angle, corner), and CANTON (a political branch).

For sugar CANE and CANE SUGAR return to קנה QaNeH (stalk, stem), reinforced by כנה KaNeH (base, post, upright).

As a hollow reed קנה QaNeH is also a pipe, and to pipe or produce shrill sounds with our widpipe, may be the KN source of all CANOROUS or CANTORIAL activity by a CHANTEUSE CHANTING a CHANSON - or that of a CANARY or CHANTICLEER (rooster). See HEN. CAN-CAN and CHANTAGE involve the "singing"' of tattling and blackmailing. CANT is traced to the whining singsong of beggars. There's also the CANTATA, CANTICLE, CANTO, CANTUS, and CANZONE(T).

For the IE “root” kan (to sing) and קינה QeeYNaH (dirge) see "KEEN." Hungarian enekel (to sing) and enekes (singer) are reversed K-N singing terms.

Returning to (not hollow) branches, bough in Polish is konarm. A canal (kanat in Arabic) is a kanova in Finnish.


A Chinese rod is a kan (seen above); the Thai equivalent is kahn. Kano in Hawaiian is a large, hard stem or a tool handle. קיןQaYiN is a cane-like spear (II Samuel 21:16); the Arabic QeeYN is a cane or spear.

CANVAS is from Latin cannabis (hemp) and the IE “root” kannabis (hemp - a late IE word borrowed from an unknown source).

קנבוסQaNBOO$ is an early post-Biblical term for CANNABIS or hemp. Other Mishnaic variants sound like K'NOOBHeS and KaNaBHOOS. The word HEMP is traced to Greek kannabis and Persian kanab (notice the K- to-H change, as well as the more common N ----> M and B ----> P Grimm's Law shifts of nasals and bilabials).

The ultimate etymon is conceded by Webster's to be "a very early borrowing from a non-IE, possibly Semitic, language." A probable source of CANNABIS is either בשם קנה QaNeH BoSeM – Exodus 30:24 See BALSAM, and consider N/L confusion with CALAMUS – see CALAMUS.

In seeking Semitic words related to קנבוס QaN(V)OAS (hemp), consider Aramaic QaNaBH (to trim, prune—possible source of NIP and NIBBLE) and QaNeH (stalk, stem, reed). See SCION.

JUNKET is from Latin juncus, reed. This might be a reversed C-N קנה QaNeH (reed), with the vowel-like J tacked on the front, and the familiar –us suffix.

CANOE QoNeH Koof-Noon-Hey

con-EH ____ __קנה________[KN(H)]

ROOTS: Spanish canoa is said to have originated in the Caribbean Indian word for a light boat.

קנה QaNeH is a stem or reed. It ought to be the root of a boat word referring to either a hollowed out tree trunk (a "stem") or to reeds (the material of many small boats of antiquity).


Posted from the land of Canaan.

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