“Hellenist” is described by an old Webster’s dictionary as “one who affiliates with Greeks, or imitates Greek manners; especially a Jew who used the Greek language as his mother tongue”. There are two schools of thought on this. Many ancient Jews loved the Greek culture and emulated it as best they could but the historical record also shows many Jews were opposed to the love of all things Greek as they felt it took away from Jewish culture. If you have some odd names in your family and don’t know where they originated, look them up on the Internet in a Greek to English dictionary. Even my name, Suellen, as southern as it sounds, has its root in the Greek Hellen.
Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy – A How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy II – Uncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors and Secret Genealogy III – From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians. Available here:
Secret Genealogy II: http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-II-Christian-Ancestors/dp/1484053222
Secret Genealogy III: http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-III-Jewish-Anglo-Saxon-Acadians/dp/148407579X
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