The Meaning of Names – MOZO MOSSERI

The meaning of names among Mediterranean Jews

Marc Eliany ?

ALMOS (Moses, Moshei, Moise, Moissis)
among other possible variations depending on the country and language of the person.

The root of the name may be ‘Mos’ from the Hebrew name Moses or a transformation of ‘masri,’ Arabic for Egyptian. The name may have a Spanish/Moore meaning, i.e., philantropist or a charitable person or a kind/good person (from the North African Arabic dialect ‘mezian.’)

The root ‘Mos’ is preceded by the prefix ‘al’ and followed by the suffix ‘nino’ in one case and ‘o’ in second case and ‘eri’ in a third case. Mos may refer to ‘Moses’ or an origin or location, perhaps Egypt. The use of ‘z’ in ‘Mozo’ is a likely spelling variation.

Prefixes attached to the root name such as (aben, iben, abi, avi, ben, bin, abou, a, aj, al, bel, i, la, lel, me, m, o, wi, vi, ) denotes usually a relation to a person, i.e., the father of or the son of X, a place, i.e., a person from X, an occupation, i.e., a person who practices a specific occupation, a characteristic of a person, i.e., beautiful… The prefixes al, el are equivalent to ‘the’ in English or the article ‘le’ in French. In the Moroccan Berbers tradition, prefixes such as ‘wi’ ‘vi’ ‘i’ means usually a family relationship to X, the equivalent of Abu in Arabic, i.e., ‘the father of’, ‘son of’ a man, a tribal affiliation and so forth.In the Hebrew tradition, the prefix ‘M ‘ is an abbreviation of the word ‘from.’

Suffixes such as ‘i’ or ‘eri’ refer to an affiliation with a person or a place, for example: a descendent of ‘Mos’ or a ‘masri’ a person from Egypt.
Suffixes such as
‘nino’ are used in Spain and Italy to indicate descendence.

ALMOS Abraham (1927-). Bulgaria. Painter in Israel. Paints in the symbolist and surrealist traditions.
ALMOSNINO Gabriel (1804-1894). Bulgaria. Chief Rabbi of Sofia. Was member of the Bulgarian Assembly in 1879.
ALMOSNINO Hasda? (?-1728). Morocco. Chief Rabbi of Tetouan. Author of Michm?rot hakodech (Gards of holiness).
ALMOSNINO Moch? (XVIIe-XVIIIes.). Morocco. Chief Rabbi of Tetouan. Author of B?ourim batanakh (Biblical interpretations).
ALMOSNINO Moch? ben Baroukh (1518?-1579?). Turkey. Rabbi, philosopher, astronomer, g?ographer, prolific author. Author of P?n? Moch? (Perspectives of Moses) on Aristotelian philosophy.
ALMOSNINO Yossef (?-1689). Yougoslavia. Chief Rabbi of Belgrade. Author of Edout l?yossef (Joseph’s testimony).
ALMOSNINO Yossef (1530-1600). Morocco. Rabbi. Doctor. Community leader. Author of S?f?r chor?ch hamitsvot (The roots of the commandments).
ALMOSNINO Yossef Ben Itshak (XVIIe-XVIIIes.). Turkey. Rabbi.

ELMOSNINO Ch?lomo (XIXes.). Morocco. Prayer leader at the Portuguese synagogue in London. Was involved in a controversy as to what is proper pronunciation.
ELMOZNINO Hasda? (1933-). Morocco. Educator and Artist, Painter and sculptor.
Elmoznino Roger (1938-). Morocco. Journalist. Educator. Illustrator of Marriage contracts.

MOZO Luis (El) (?-1596). Spain. One of the first writers in the New World. Originaire d?Espagne. Burnt alive by the Inquisition.
MOSS?RI ?lie (1879-1940). Egypt. Financier. Led the company that built the King David Hotel in Jerusalem.
MOSSERI Albert (1867-1933). Egypt. Doctor. Journalist. Editor of the Zionist Journal Kadimah (Eastward).
MOSSERI Jacques (1884-1934). Egypt. Linguist. Philologue. Contributor to the study of the Cairo G?nizah documents. Founder of Zionist organizations in Egypt. MOSSERI Victor (1873-1930). Egypt. Agronomist. Specialised in coton productivity.


Azoulay, Hayim Yossef Shem Hagdolim (the names of the great)

AZOULAY Ha?m Yossef David (Hida) (1724-1807) Ch?m hagu?dolim va?ad lahakhamim (The names of the Great Council of Sages).

Levi, J et. al. 2000        Dictionnaire biographique du monde Juif Sepharade et Mediteranean, Editions Elysee, Montreal.

Toledano, J. 1983        La saga des familles, Les juifs du Maroc et leurs noms, Editions Stavit, Tel Aviv

Laredo A. 1978           Les noms des juifs au Maroc (Madrid, 1978)

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