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(1,229 words)

Author(s): Brague, Rémi
[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 present conditions of life amongst fellow humans. This modern concept associated with world is thus alien to the ancient Greek notion, as is the modern use of the …