Etymology of Blasphemy

By Xah Lee. Date:

Here's basic definition of blasphemy:

Blasphemy is irreverence towards religious or holy persons or things. Some countries have laws to punish blasphemy, while others have laws to give recourse to those who are offended by blasphemy. Those laws may discourage blasphemy as a matter of blasphemous libel, vilification of religion, religious insult, or hate speech.

Here's etymology of blasphemy:

The word “blasphemy” came via Middle English “blasfemen” and Old French “blasfemer” and Late Latin “blasphemare” from Greek “βλασφημέω”, from βλάπτω = “I injure” and φήμη = “reputation”. From blasphemare also came Old French “blasmer”, from which English “blame” came.

Blasphemy: ‘from Gk. blasphemia “a speaking ill, impious speech, slander,” from “blasphemein”: “to speak evil of.”'

“In the sense of speaking evil of God this word is found in Ps. 74:18; Isa. 52:5; Rom. 2:24; Rev. 13:1, 6; 16:9, 11, 21. It denotes also any kind of calumny, or evil-speaking, or abuse (1 Kings 21:10; Acts 13:45; 18:6, etc.).”

[etymology of blasphemy]

Here's some selected excerpts from Wikipedia [ Blasphemy ] [ ]:

Christian theology condemns blasphemy. It is spoken of in Mark 3:29, where blaspheming the Holy Spirit is spoken of as unforgivable — the eternal sin.

Blasphemy has been condemned as a serious, or even the most serious, sin by the major creeds and Church theologians.

In Britain's last blasphemy execution, 20-year-old Thomas Aikenhead was executed for the crime in 1697. He was prosecuted for denying the veracity of the Old Testament and the legitimacy of Christ's miracles.

Note that a big incident in recent years about blasphemy is that, the Islamic ordered a author killed due to his book. See: Christianity and Islam as Violent Cults.