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Metatron

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Victoria Liss
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« on: October 27, 2010, 01:21:14 pm »

Etymology
There are numerous possible etymologies for the name Metatron.[9][10] However, some scholars such as Philip Alexander believe that if the name Metatron originated in Hekhalot-Merkabah texts (such as 3 Enoch), then it may be a made up word like the magic words Adiriron and Dapdapiron.[11]

Hugo Odeberg,[12] Adolf Jellinek[13] and Marcus Jastrow[14] suggest the name may originate from either "keeper of the watch" מטרא or the noun "to guard, to protect" ממטר. An early derivation of this can be seen in Shimmusha Rabbah, where Enoch is clothed in light and is the guardian of the souls ascending to heaven. Odeberg also suggests that the name Metatron might be taken from the Persian name Mithras.[12] He lays out a number of parallels between Mithras and Metatron based on their positions in heaven and duties.

Metatron seems to be made up of two Greek words, after and throne, μετὰ θρóνος (meta thronos), taken together as "one who serves behind the throne" or "one who occupies the throne next to the throne of glory". This has been disputed due to the word θρóνος not being used in place of the Hebrew word for throne. The two words do not appear in any known text, leading to the belief of Gershom Scholem in particular to dismiss this idea[15] with the words "this widely repeated etymology.... has no merit.".[16]

The word συνθρόνος (synthronos) is used as "co-occupant of the divine throne"[17] ; however, like the above etymology, it is not found in any source materials.[12] It is supported by Saul Lieberman and Peter Schäfer, who give further reasons why this might be a viable etymology.[18][19
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