Serafina, origin of and angels

Gili Bar-Hillel abhillel at
Mon Jan 22 22:18:02 EST 2001

>Please tell us more about names for angels - Greek "angelos" means simply
>messenger, but what are the meanings of the various biblical names? I can
>think of seraphim, cherubim and... er... can't remember. But isn't there
>supposed to be a whole hierarchy of angels?

I don't know about the heirarchy... here are the ones I remember:

cherubim - in modern Hebrew this would be pronounced "kruvim". Then again, 
in modern Hebrew the word is more commonly used to denote cabbages...

seraphim - comes from the same root as "burn".

ophanim - comes from the same root as "cog" or "wheel", I think it implies 
that they are a motivating force? The modern Hebrew word for bicycle is 
"ophanaim". "Ophanim" is what Anne Rice has on the vanity-plate of her Rolls 
Royce - I thought it was meant to be a joke, calling her Rolls Royce a 
bicycle, but turns out she meant for it to mean "angels".

And the most common word, basically the only word still used in modern 
Hebrew to denote angels is "malachim" - literally, "messengers".
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