circumcise, circumcision

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The Hebrew and Greek terms that are translated as “circumcise” or “circumcision” in English (originally meaning of English term: “to cut around”) are (back-) translated in various ways:

  • Chimborazo Highland Quichua: “to cut the flesh”
  • San Miguel El Grande Mixtec, Navajo: “to cut around”
  • Javanese: “to clip-away”
  • Uab Meto: “to pinch and cut” (usually shortened to “to cut”)
  • North Alaskan Inupiatun, Western Highland Purepecha: “to put the mark”
  • Tetelcingo Nahuatl: “to put the mark in the body showing that they belong to God” (or: “that they have a covenant with God”)
  • Indonesian: disunat — “undergo sunat” (sunat is derived from Arabic “sunnah (سنة)” — “(religious) way (of life)”)
  • Ekari: “to cut the end of the member for which one fears shame” (in Gen. 17:10) (but typically: “the cutting custom”) (source for this and above: Reiling / Swellengrebel)
  • Hiri Motu: “cut the skin” (source: Deibler / Taylor 1977, p. 1079)
  • Garifuna: “cut off part of that which covers where one urinates”
  • Bribri: “cut the soft” (source for this and the one above: Ronald Ross)
  • Amele: deweg cagu qoc — “cut the body” (source: John Roberts)
  • Eastern Highland Otomi: “cut the flesh of the sons like Moses taught” (source: Ronald D. Olson in Notes on Translation January, 1968, p. 15ff.)
  • Newari: “put the sign in one’s bodies” (Source: Newari Back Translation)
  • Central Mazahua: “sign in his flesh”
  • Hopi: “being cut in a circle in his body” (source for this and above: Waterhouse / Parrott in Notes on Translation October 1967, p. 1ff.)

complete verse (Galatians 5:3)

Following are a number of back-translations of Galatians 5:3:

  • Uma: “I also say: those who request-to-be-circumcised following the Law of Musa, they must also follow all the other commands in the Law of Musa.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
  • Yakan: “Really I instruct/warn you again that whoever is circumcised as the law commands, they ought to obey/follow all the commands of the law.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
  • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And that’s not all because it’s true that if there’s anyone who supposes mistakenly that circumcision is any value to him, he also must thoroughly obey every command there in the whole Law.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
  • Kankanaey: “I tell you again that if someone goes and gets-circumcised, he must also then fulfill all the commands of the law of Moses.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
  • Tagbanwa: “I say again to you that whoever will still have himself circimcised, he will not in fact become righteous if he does not obey completely all the laws entrusted to Moises.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
  • Tenango Otomi: “Again I want to tell you. Every person who says that he will mark his body, let him not say that only that should he do, rather he must do all that is written in the law then.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)

law

The Greek that is translated in English as “Law” or “law” is translated in Mairasi as oro nasinggiei or “prohibited things.” (Source: Enggavoter 2004)

In Yucateco the phrase that is used for “law” is “ordered-word” (for “commandment,” it is “spoken-word”) (source: Nida 1947, p. 198) and in Central Tarahumara it is “writing-command.” (wsource: Waterhouse / Parrott in Notes on Translation October 1967, p. 1ff.)
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