Monday, January 29, 2007


This is a map of the Tigris - Euphrates WatershedThe Euphrates (the traditional Greek name, Arabic: الفرات; Al-Furat, Hebrew: פְּרָת) is the westernmost of the two great rivers that define Mesopotamia (the other being the Tigris).
EtymologyThe name Euphrates may have originated from Old Persian Ufratu, as it were from Avestan *hu-perethuua, meaning "good to cross over" (from hu-, meaning "good", and peretu, meaning "ford"). Alternatively, some suggest that the name Euphrates is possibly of Kurdish origin.

Course of the Euphrates
In Kurdish, fere means "wide", re means "flowing water" and hat is "flowing", giving fererehat, meaning "wide flowing water". The modern Kurdish name, Ferat, is possibly a reduction of the older name. However, the Indo-European etymology of the name is put into doubt by the Sumerian and Akkadian names for the Euphrates are Buranun and Pu-rat-tu, respectively, Buranun being attested in an inscription associated with king Gudea (22nd century BC). It seems thus likely that the Old Persian name arose by popular etymology based on the pre-Iranian name of the river.


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