|Lehite GN||1.||City and tower, early 5th c. AD (Moroni 9:7, 16-17)|
It is possible that the GN SHERRIZAH derives from HEBREW šrṣ, “to swarm, teem” attested in a Qal verbal form, “to swarm,” or the segholate noun, šereṣ, “swarming things” (coll.). For instance in Exodus 8:3 (7:28 in the HEBREW Bible), “and the river shall bring forth frogs abundantly,” where šāraṣ is rendered with “shall bring forth abundantly.” Nabatean contains an instance of a feminine noun form from this root, šrṣh, that seems to mean “profusion.” Moroni 9:7 specifically mentions “many prisoners,” including “men, women, and children” that were captured by the LAMANITES from the “tower of SHERRIZAH".
The doubling of the r and the assumption that HEBREW ṣ would become /z/ in English transcriptions, are seen by some as detracting from this etymology (JH). However, the KJV frequently transliterates ṣ with a z (JAT). Though biblical HEBREW does not indicate a doubled r with a dagesh, HEBREW can indicate a virtually doubled r with compensatory lengthening.
Cf. Book of Mormon SHURR.
Deseret Alphabet: 𐐟𐐊𐐡𐐆𐐞𐐂 (ʃʌrɪzɑː)
- J. Hoftijzer and K. Jongeling. Dictionary of North-West Semitic Inscriptons, 2 vols. Leiden: Brill, 1995., sub šrṣh.
- The only HEBREW noun from this root is a qatl segholate, šereṣ. The Nabatean form is clearly a feminine form that need not be related to a segholate form. Therefore, the Book of Mormon vowelling could be possible.