- one of a scattered group of people that traces its descent from the Biblical Hebrews or from postexilic adherents of Judaism; Israelite.
- a person whose religion is Judaism.
- a subject of the ancient kingdom of Judah.
- Offensive. of Jews; Jewish.
- (lowercase) Offensive. to bargain sharply with; beat down in price (often followed by down).
Origin of Jew
Examples from the Web for jew
But the enemy of the new emirs is neither the Jew nor the Christian, it is the godless militant defending secularism.Houellebecq’s Incendiary Novel Imagines France With a Muslim President
January 9, 2015
To me, being a Jew carries a low-grade paranoia that is both an overreaction and entirely justified, based on history.Gaza, You're No Good For My Marriage
August 9, 2014
Somehow, finding a Jew to blame makes up sort of deep symmetry that allows people to comfort themselves that they have an answer.Ron Rosenbaum on Hitler, Hollywood, and Quantifying Evil
July 26, 2014
It is a classic anti-Semitic canard to punish any Jew for the perceived crimes of all of them.Europe’s Jews Punished for Israel’s War
July 25, 2014
There may be one or two more somewhere else in Deutschland, but I will forever think of Friedel as the last German Jew.Survived Hitler, Returned to Germany
May 25, 2014
They were not sure whether she were most Saracen, gipsy, or Jew.The Armourer's Prentices
Charlotte M. Yonge
From that moment on, no Jew dared to question the authority of Moses.Ancient Man
Hendrik Willem van Loon
I'll teach a set of lawyers to come playing the Jew to my young men.
The family affection of the Jew, his kindness to his kindred, have become proverbial.The Man Shakespeare
Was he your companion, the man with a hurt arm who looked like a Jew?Fair Margaret
H. Rider Haggard
- a member of the Semitic people who claim descent from the ancient Hebrew people of Israel, are spread throughout the world, and are linked by cultural or religious ties
- a person whose religion is Judaism
Word Origin and History for jew
late 12c. (in plural, giwis), from Anglo-French iuw, Old French giu, from Latin Iudaeum (nominative Iudaeus), from Greek Ioudaios, from Aramaic jehudhai (Hebrew y'hudi) "Jew," from Y'hudah "Judah," literally "celebrated," name of Jacob's fourth son and of the tribe descended from him. Replaced Old English Iudeas "the Jews." Originally, "Hebrew of the kingdom of Judah."
Jews' harp "simple mouth harp" is from 1580s, earlier Jews' trump (1540s); the connection with Jewishness is obscure. Jew-baiting first recorded 1853, in reference to German Judenhetze. In uneducated times, inexplicable ancient artifacts were credited to Jews, based on the biblical chronology of history: e.g. Jews' money (1570s) "Roman coins found in England." In Greece, after Christianity had erased the memory of classical glory, ruins of pagan temples were called "Jews' castles," and in Cornwall, Jews' houses was the name for the remains of ancient tin-smelting works.
"to cheat, to drive a hard bargain," 1824, from Jew (n.) (cf. gyp, welsh, etc.). The campaign to eliminate it in early 20c. was so successful that people began to avoid the noun and adjective, too, and started using Hebrew instead.
Now I'll say 'a Jew' and just the word Jew sounds like a dirty word and people don't know whether to laugh or not. [Lenny Bruce (1925-1966)]