עתיק \ קדום \ קדמון

sawyeric1

Senior Member
English - American
עתיק and קדום both mean "ancient". Are there any differences in usage between the two?

Thanks
 
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  • oopqoo

    Senior Member
    Hebrew - Israel
    Not sure this will contribute too much but the only instance I'd use one over the other is when saying "an ancient tribe" or "ancient people" -
    שבט קדום, עם קדום
    Maybe that's just me though.
     

    amikama

    a mi modo
    עברית
    To me, עתיק is ancient and קדום is also ancient but maybe more primitive, or from a remote period in the past (e.g. the prehistoric era).
    A house built in the 18th century would be בית עתיק but not בית קדום.
    בית קדום could probably be a primitive house built millennia ago.
     

    sawyeric1

    Senior Member
    English - American
    In English we would call a house from the 18th century "historic" instead of "ancient". Something ancient would have to be a lot older. So היסטורי isn't used in that sense in Hebrew, or it's just interchangeable with עתיק?
     

    stam-adam

    Senior Member
    Russian
    << NEW QUESTION - threads merged by moderator >>

    Hi, could you please explain the difference between קדמון ,קדום, and עתיק ? Is one more "ancient" than the others, or are these words used in different contexts? Would you use the same word for an "ancient settlement", let's say, from the Stone Age or the Middle Ages? Or for an "ancient synagogue" from the 1st century C.E.? Thanks a lot.
     
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    Abaye

    Senior Member
    Hebrew
    Terms like עתיק, קדום, קדמון, קדמוני, ארכאי, בראשיתי (and apparently some more) all can be translated to "ancient". Some of them are preferred in certain contexts, but I don't think there's a robust rule. Also, I don't think any of them is further ancient than the other. For example, עתיק is commonly used for objects and eras, not for persons. קדמון is often used for ancient humans like Neanderthals.

    מצאנו במערה ציורים עתיקים שהשאיר אחריו האדם הקדמון ששכן במערה בימים קדומים.
     
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