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John 6:70




The literal meaning of "διάβολος" (diabolos) in Ancient Greek is "slanderer" or "accuser."

The English word "devil" ultimately derives from the Greek word "διάβολος" (diabolos). Here's how the evolution occurred:

  1. From Greek to Latin: The Greek word "διάβολος" (diabolos) was borrowed into Latin as "diabolus." In Latin, "diabolus" retained the meaning of "slanderer" or "accuser," but it also began to be associated with the concept of the devil due to its usage in Christian texts.

  2. From Latin to Old English: With the spread of Christianity into England, the Latin term "diabolus" was introduced to Old English as "deofol" or "dēofol." In Old English, "deofol" referred specifically to the devil, the supreme evil being in Christian theology.

  3. Development in Middle English: In Middle English, the word evolved further, retaining its meaning of "devil" but also taking on broader connotations related to evil, temptation, and malevolent supernatural beings.

  4. Modern English: In modern English, "devil" continues to be used to refer to the chief evil spirit in Christian belief, as well as to malevolent or mischievous supernatural beings in folklore and mythology.