The meaning of names among Mediterranean Jews

Marc Eliany ©

ASSAL (Assaly, Assli)

among other possible variations depending on the country and language of the person.

Assal means honey in Arabic. Assoulin in Berber means 'rock.' The name may also refer to a tribal affiliation with the tribe Ait Tizguin Oua-Assouline. The name is common in Morocco in the Assouline form and the Assaly form elsewhere in North Africa and the Middle East.

Prefixes attached to the root name such as (aben, iben, abi, avi, am, ben, bin, abou, a, aj, al, bel, ha, 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 'ri' 'ti' refer to an association with a person or a location, for example: arditi= from ardou or ard.
Suffixes such as 'illo' 'ano' 'ino'
'nino' are used in Spain and Italy to indicate descendence or association with an attribute.

ASSAL Yah’acov (XXes.) Tunisia. Television producer in Israel.
ASSOULINE Pierre (1953-). Morocco (Casablanca). Journalist. Director of the edition Lire. Author of biographies such as Gaston Gallimard.

ASSOULINE Makhlouf (XXes.). Morocco. Maroc). Colonel in the Moroccan army. Finance director of the municipality of Casablanca. Director of the Ittihad schools.
ASSOULINE Benjamin (1918-1993). Algéria (Constantine). Rabbi. Arrested by the Nazis in 1940. Escaped to Lyon. Rabbi in Lyon and the collective settlement Bét Ouziel in Israel.
ASSOULINE Lévi (1828-1903). Morocco
(Marrakech). Rabbi of Constantine. Author of Séfér Zibhé Élokim (Ritual Slaughter).
ASSOULINE Moché (XVIes.). Morocco. Rabbi in Fès and Taroudant. Author of Séfér dérachot (Sermons).

BENASSOULI-Nahon Jonas (1888-1962). Morocco (Tanger). Engineer. Community leader in Spain. Vice president of the Spanish Red Cross.


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

AZOULAY Haïm Yossef David (Hida) (1724-1807) Chém haguédolim 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)