Jeez vs. Geez

By Jaxson

  • Geez

    Ge’ez (; ግዕዝ, Gəʿəz IPA: [ɡɨʕɨz:a] ( listen); also transliterated Giʻiz) is an ancient South Semitic language and a member of the Ethiopian Semitic group. The language originated in southern regions of Eritrea and the northern region of Ethiopia in the Horn of Africa. It later became the official language of the Kingdom of Aksum and Ethiopian imperial court.

    Today, Ge’ez remains only as the main language used in the liturgy of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church, the Ethiopian Catholic Church, the Eritrean Catholic Church, and the Beta Israel Jewish community. However, in Ethiopia, Amharic (the main lingua franca of modern Ethiopia) or other local languages, and in Eritrea and Tigray Region in Ethiopia, Tigrinya may be used for sermons. Amharic, Tigrinya, and Tigre are closely related to Ge’ez. Some linguists do not believe that Ge’ez constitutes the common ancestor of modern Ethiopian languages, but that Ge’ez became a separate language early on from some hypothetical, completely unattested language, and can thus be seen as an extinct sister language of Amharic, Tigre and Tigrinya. The foremost Ethiopian experts such as Amsalu Aklilu point to the vast proportion of inherited nouns that are unchanged, and even spelled identically in both Ge’ez and Amharic (and to a lesser degree, Tigrinya).

  • Jeez (interjection)

    Exclamation of fright, incredulity, shock, surprise or anger.

    “Jeez, that was one helluva week.”

  • Geez (interjection)

    An exclamation denoting surprise or frustration.

  • Geez (noun)

    Informal address to a male.

    “Hi geez, you alright?”


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