The Devil: What it is and Meaning

Devil as symbology and iconographically is the cluster of all evil. The devil in monotheistic religions is the antagonistic to god and in polytheistic religions they are beings that represent some negative characteristics.

Devil can refer to a superhuman being but as an adjective it can mean someone naughty, disrespectful or libertine, for example, “Maria is 5 years old and she is already a devil”.

Devil comes from the Greek diabolos which represents an “accuser”, “defamer” or “slanderer” and is composed of the prefix day- which means “through” and whale which represents “throwing” or “throwing” lies, prejudices and other evils.

We can see from the etymological origin of the word devil that before the Christian era the devil was the one who launched tragedies through people. Formerly it was believed that the devils existed as small demons generally inferior.

The devil and god were not antagonistic beings before the bible became the holy book of the Judaic religion and the Christian religion.

Later due to the mixture of the initial concept of Satan in the Bible derived from the Hebrew that means “adversary” or “antagonist”. It was only around the 1st and 2nd century BC that they borrowed the Greek word diabolos to replace satan with devil.

The devil has served as an icon of power, ambition and revenge inspiring the perfect enemies of movies, plays and video games.

See also:

  • Satan
  • Antagonist
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