Meaning of Hurrian in English:


Pronunciation /ˈhʌrɪən/


  • 1A member of an ancient people, originally from Armenia, who settled in Syria and northern Mesopotamia during the 3rd–2nd millennia BC and were later absorbed by the Hittites and Assyrians.

    ‘In the second half of the 8th century, Tiglath-Pileser III pushed his frontiers south to the Persian Gulf and north into the heart of Anatolia, defeating the Hurrians and the Hittites.’
    • ‘He wrote of the relation of the Kurdish peoples, or some of them, to the ancient Hurrians.’
    • ‘In fact, Siirt is a city of great antiquity, home to many different civilisations, beginning with the Hurrians, who were succeeded in turn by the Medes, Persians, Parthians, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs and finally the Ottomans.’
    • ‘The Hurrians (mentioned in the Bible as the Horites) had a sky god Anu (perhaps the same as the Sumerian An) who was castrated and overthrown by his son, Kumarbi.’
  • 2mass noun The language of the Hurrians, written in cuneiform and of unknown affinity.

    ‘We know that the Middle East of 5000 years ago was using a variety of unrelated languages, Hurrian, Egyptian, Sumerian, Elamite, Hittite, and Akkadian, where for the last 1000 years there has been nothing but Arabic and Persian.’
    • ‘This system developed over the succeeding centuries to form Akkadian, Eblaite, Elamite, Hititte, Hurrian, and Old Persian.’
    • ‘The cosmopolitan nature of the city is evident from the presence of documents written in Ugaritic, Akkadian, Hittite, Egyptian, Hurrian, and even Cypro-Minoan.’


  • Relating to the Hurrians or their language.

    ‘The charioteers, who bore the Hurrian title mariyannu, were an élite group given special privileges.’
    • ‘Some of the pottery is estimated to be approximately 5,000 years old, and it has been linked to the Nuzi people of the Hurrian civilization.’
    • ‘To a visitor from a non-Islamic planet earth, the Hurrian political system would appear to be an exotic blend of Stalin and a militant Sweden.’
    • ‘Wouldn't it shock people to find that out that Jewish beginnings were not necessarily Semitic, but Hurrian?’