Origin of English word SOLEMN

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English Word


Edenic Word


Hebrew Word









SOLEMN is traced to Latin sollemnis (yearly, annual, hence religious, solemn) and to the Indo-European “root” sol (whole).

SOLEMN and Latin sollus (all) are from שלום SHaLOAM (whole, thus peace) and    שלם S(H)aLaiM (complete – see   SLAM).  SHaLoM does mean public quiet, as in lack of violence. See SALVATION for the quiet of the related Shin-Lamed word SHaLVaH. In a place of SOLEMNITY it is SERENE (S-N) and SILENT  (S-L,

S-N).  The sun-worshiping, solar etymology does not link sacredness with a hushed atmosphere. Let us quote from the song, “silent night, holy night.”

שלם   SHaLaiM is to pay, since there is closure and SERENITY in making the final payments of a transaction. 


This SLM finality is seen in the closing action of a grand SLAM in a bridge game or or a base-clearing hit in  baseball. Visitors to a mosque are greeted with salaam (the Arabic SHaLOAM or greeting) in the selamlik (reception room). The SLM of ISLAM carries the SOLEMNITY of submission to Allah. The Semitic SLM reception room provides a better etymon for SALON and SALOON than offered above at SOLE.

The IE “root” of SILENCE and SILENT is only si-lo (silent). Latin silere (to be silent) only reflects a Shin-Lamed, perhaps dropping the Mem/M. Therefore, despite the fricative-liquid-nasal quietness of SHaLoM, one might prefer SHaLVaH (ease, pease) for the source of  SILENCE. There are also Shin-Lamed words like SHaLaH, at ease, and SHiLeeY, “quietly” (Lexicon – II Samuel 3:27). See S-L looseness at LOOSE.   More wholeness (health) from שלם SHeeLaiM at SLAM.

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