Paradise, heaven, sky

Discussion in 'All Languages' started by Outsider, Jan 29, 2012.

  1. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    In Portuguese these three words are paraíso, céu, and... céu! The word for heaven is the same as the word for sky. Even in English "heaven" is ambiguous: sometimes it can mean sky, and historically that was its original meaning.
    How does this work in your language?

    Thanks in advance for all replies.
  2. apmoy70

    apmoy70 Senior Member

    In Greek:

    Paradise: «Παράδεισος» (pa'raðisos, m.) a Hellenistic/Koine masculine noun «παράδεισος» (pă'rădeisŏs), a Persian loan word (from Middle Persian *pardēz) via Hebrew (the LXX Jewish scholars who translated the Hebrew Bible into Koine Greek-known as the Septuagint-calqued the Hebrew word פרדס Pardés as «Παράδεισος»).
    Sky: «Ουρανός» (ura'nos, m.) a Classical masculine noun «οὐρανός» (ourā'nŏs)--> the vault of heaven, sky with obscure etymology. Some philologists see a link however, with the ancient masculine noun «οὖρος» ('ourŏs)--> urine, PIE *ur-/*wers-, to moisten, flow; therefore «οὐρανός» is the place from where water, in the form of rain, drops. Uranus is the name of a planet in our planetary system.
    Heaven: «Ουρανοί» (ura'ni) which is simply the noun «ουρανός» in plural, lit. the skies --> «ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν», "the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 4:17, KJV)
  3. DearPrudence

    DearPrudence Dépêche Mod (AL mod)

    French (lower Normandy)
    In French:

    "paradise": "le paradis"
    "heaven": "le paradis", "le ciel", "les cieux"
    ("cieux" is the plural of "ciel"). So literally, "the sky" or "the skies"
    "sky": "le ciel"

    So "le ciel" can be ambiguous as it can be "the sky" or "heaven/paradise" (in some set phrases though)
    "le paradis" is not ambiguous.
  4. Moro12 Senior Member

    In Russian:

    "paradise": рай (rai)
    "heaven": небо ('nebo) - singular, небеса (nebe'sa) - plural
    "sky": небо ('nebo) - always singular
  5. Moro12 Senior Member

    As far as I know, Japanese makes a similar distinction between 空 [sora] (sky) and 天 [ten] (heaven). But I am not completely sure.
    Probably some native speakers of Japanese could clarify the difference. 日本語は、「空」と「天」は意味が違いますか。
  6. Anja.Ann

    Anja.Ann Senior Member

    Hi, Outsider :)

    In Italian:

    "paradise" = "paradiso" (from Latin paradisus which comes from Greek παράδεισος (that means "garden", "park")
    "heaven" = "paradiso" or "cieli" (plural) or "cielo"
    "sky" = "cielo" (from Latin caelum), sometimes also called "la volta celeste"
  7. francisgranada Senior Member


    paradicsom - paradise
    ég - sky
    menny - heaven

    Also compound words: égbolt (sky-arch, "la volta celeste"), mennyország (heaven-land, "kingdom of heaven")
  8. kirahvi Senior Member


    paradise - paratiisi
    heaven - taivas
    sky - taivas
  9. AutumnOwl Senior Member

    paradise - paradis
    heaven - himmel, himmelen
    sky - himmel, sky (the English word sky comes from the Scandinavian languages, in Swedish sky can be used both for the sky/heaven as well as for clouds)
  10. OneStroke Senior Member

    Hong Kong, China
    Chinese - Cantonese (HK)
    Paradise - 天堂 (tiantang)
    Heaven - 天堂 (tiantang)
    Sky - 天 (tian), 天空 (tiankong), among others

    Good heavens! - 我的天啊! Wode tian a!
    Oh my god! - 老天爺啊! Laotianye a!
    God/Heaven bless (you). - 上天保佑(你). Shangtian baoyou (ni).
  11. mataripis

    mataripis Senior Member

    In Tagalog: Paradise= Paraiso Heaven= Langit/kalangitan Sky= Himpapawid/kalawakan
  12. tFighterPilot Senior Member

    Israel - Hebrew
    It's a bit tricky in Hebrew.
    Gan Eden גן עדן: Literally means garden of Eden but in modern Hebrew is also used as the opposite of Geyhenom גיהנום which means hell and is usually used as the translation of paradise.
    Shamayim שמיים: Means sky but can also be translated to heaven in some occasions. For example "Avinu shebashamayim" would be translated to "Our father that is in heaven".
  13. terredepomme Senior Member

    Human Language
    You have to understand that this "paradise up in the sky" metaphor is a biblical concept.
    So East Asian countries did not associate paradise with the sky.
    In Buddhism there is the notion of paradise called 極樂, which is in the faraway west, not up there.
    Taoism and Confucianism do not have a notion of paradise because they strictly focuse on the earthly life.
    So if you are looking for the distinction between the heaven as the metaphor of paradise and the heaven as the literal sky, you have to look at the words for paradise in East Asian christianity, which are naturally modern calques.
    Specifically, they would be 天國(sky-country) or 天堂(sky-temple).
  14. terredepomme Senior Member

    Human Language
    As for the difference between sky and the heaven, I believe it to be a distinction made between secular/holy, the latter able to mean a "personified" or "sacrelized" sky rather than a literal one.
    To make this distinction in modern Mandarin, 天空 would strictly mean the literal aerial space rather than the Heaven who govern all matters.
    In Japanese, 空 would be literal and 天 would be more personified.
    In Korean, no such distinction is made: 하늘 can mean both the literal and the sacred sky.
    天 in Korean is not used independantly but only as a component in polysyllabic words.
  15. apmoy70

    apmoy70 Senior Member

    Often, the opposite of Paradise in Christianity is referred to as the גיהנום Geyhenom/Gehinom, which in Koine Greek was calqued as «Γέεννα» ('Gĕĕnnă, f.; Modern Greek pronunciation--> /' in the Gospels (Gehenna is the English equivalent).
  16. Favara Senior Member

    Catalan - Southern Val.
    Catalan shows no difference from other Romance languages:
    paradise = paradís
    heaven = paradís, cel, cels (pl.)
    sky = cel
  17. Selyd Senior Member

    In Ukrainian:
    "paradise": рай (rai)
    "heaven": небо ('nebo) - singular, небеса (nebe'sa) - plural
    "sky": небо ('nebo) - singular
  18. kloie Senior Member

    in estonian
  19. NewtonCircus Senior Member

    Dutch (Belgium)
    In Dutch

    a) Paradise = Paradijs
    b) Sky = Lucht or Hemel
    c) Air = Lucht
    d) Heaven = Hemel

    Use of lucht or hemel is not always obvious.Under the blue sky = Onder de blauwe hemel.
    A bird in the sky = Een vogel in de lucht.
  20. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    Praha (Prague)
    magyar (Hungarian)

    paradise > ráj
    sky > nebe, obloha [obloha exists, I think, only in Czech&Slovak, no other Slavic lngs]
    heaven > nebe, nebesa

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