Origin of English word SLIP

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English Word


Edenic Word


Hebrew Word









remove or loosen


There aretwo kindsof SLIPPING, gliding as smooth as a silk SLEEVE, and the falling down kind of SLIP – see SPILL.  The confounded AHD offers two roots.   The first IEroot is lei and slei (slimy). This fictional root slips from SLIME to LIME, cites Old English slipor (slippery), but has no plausible source for the sound and sense of SLIP (dragging, sliding).  The second  reconstructed IE “root”  sleubh (to slide, slip) is a better match with the Edenic etymon, but should have included Middle Low German slepen (to drag – source of Modern German schleppen, drag,  then Yiddish SHLEP, to drag). Instead, this sliding and gliding was left in the slime of the other root.  

שלף SHaLaPH is the action of drawing or sliding a sword out of a sheath (Joshua 5:13), or of slipping out of one’s sandal – Ruth 4:7.  This act of taking something off  a shoe recalls Exodus 3:5 where Moses is told to   של SHahL  (remove or loosen!)  his sandals. Another ש-ל Shin-Lamed letting go or slipping off is שלך   SHaLaKH – see SLOUGH.  The ש-ל   Shin-Lamed sub-root of loosening,  seen at LOOSE, informs words like שלל SHaLaL (booty, that which is loosened from victims (Joshua 22:8) and   שלל SHoLaL means stripped of or loosened of Micha 1:8 .


From lei and slei (slimy).are cognates like LINIMENT, LOAM, OBLIVION, SCHLEP, SLICK (K[H]aLaQ is slick), SLIGHT and SLIPPERY. From root  sleubh (to slide, slip) are cognates like COWSLIP, LUBRICATE, SLEEVE, SLOP and SLOOP (see SLOOP).

Bible Verses

Ruth 4:7 וזאת לפנים בישׂראל על־הגאולה ועל־התמורה לקים כל־דבר שׁלף אישׁ נעלו ונתן לרעהו וזאת התעודה בישׂראל ׃

“Now this was the custom in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning exchanging, to confirm all things: a man drew off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour; and this was the attestation in Israel.”



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