Brill’s New Pauly

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(1,229 words)

[German version]

I. Meaning

Etymologically, neither the English world nor the German Welt correspond to the Greek κόσμος (kósmos), but to αἰών (aiṓn) in its Hellenistic meaning of 'lifetime'. The etymology of 'world' is clearly evident in the Dutch wereld: wer (Latin. vir) - eld (cf. old), 'man-age'. The world is the place where we are after we 'have come into the world' and before we 'have left this world', i.e. our presen…

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Brague, Rémi, “World”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 07 May 2021 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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