- a member of any of various ancient and modern peoples originating in southwestern Asia, including the Akkadians, Canaanites, Phoenicians, Hebrews, and Arabs.
- a Jew.
- a member of any of the peoples descended from Shem, the eldest son of Noah.
Origin of Semite
Examples from the Web for semite
Historical Examples of semite
But the worship of which blood is the tie is not to the Aryan, as to the Semite, the whole of religion.History of Religion
The Being in whom that fulness of light was revealed,—was he not a Semite of the Semites?Zionism and Anti-Semitism
Max Simon Nordau
The Semite has been and still is the priest to all Arya, by the deepest necessity of the spirit.Homer's Odyssey
Denton J. Snider
These took to it kindly, for they had the Semite's born instinct for trading.The Book of Isaiah, Volume I (of 2)
George Adam Smith
The religion of the Semite was essentially different from that of the Sumerian.A Primer of Assyriology
Archibald Henry Sayce
less commonly Shemite
- a member of the group of Caucasoid peoples who speak a Semitic language, including the Jews and Arabs as well as the ancient Babylonians, Assyrians, and Phoenicians
- another word for a Jew
Word Origin for Semite
1847, "a Jew, Arab, Assyrian, or Aramaean" (an apparently isolated use from 1797 refers to the Semitic language group), back-formation from Semitic or else from French Sémite (1845), from Modern Latin Semita, from Late Latin Sem "Shem," one of the three sons of Noah (Gen. x:21-30), regarded as the ancestor of the Semites (in old Bible-based anthropology), from Hebrew Shem. In modern sense said to have been first used by German historian August Schlözer in 1781.