Babel



an ancient city in the land of Shinar in which the building of a tower (Tower of Babel) intended to reach heaven was begun and the confusion of the language of the people took place. Gen. 11:4–9.
(usually lowercase) a confused mixture of sounds or voices.
(usually lowercase) a scene of noise and confusion.
Isaak Emmanuilovich
[ahy-zuh k;; Russian ee-sahk yi-muh-noo-yee-luh-vyich] /ˈaɪ zək;; Russian iˈsɑk yɪ mə nuˈyi lə vyɪtʃ/ (Show IPA), 1894–1941, Russian author.
Contemporary Examples

We watch Babel beaten, just before his death, in “Lubyanka Prison, Moscow, 1940.”
Intriguing, Humorous, Even Poetic: Peter Orner’s New Story Collection Joseph Peschel August 12, 2013

But I recall nothing in Possession, Angels & Insects, Babel Tower, or her other books that seems to presage this one.
Must Reads: Wild Abandon, Ramona Ausubel, A.S. Byatt Nicholas Mancusi, Jennifer Miller, Allen Barra March 5, 2012

Gowan, Donald E. From Eden to Babel: A Commentary on the Book of Genesis 1-11.
The Backstory of ‘Noah’ Is Full of Giants, Horny Angels, and a Grieving God Tim Townsend March 27, 2014

Mumford Sons taking ‘a considerable amount of time off’ after ‘Babel’ tour.
Emmy Awards Score Ratings High, Jon Hamm May Undergo Surgery Culture Team September 22, 2013

Guillermo Arriaga (Babel, 21 Grams, The Burning Plain) employs a nonlinear style.
Benjamin Percy: How I Write Noah Charney June 4, 2013

Historical Examples

And faintly, from far in the rear, came a Babel of shrill calls—weird, inhuman!
Astounding Stories of Super-Science, December 1930 Various

Between its Babel towers narrow Nassau Street was like a canyon.
The Bacillus of Beauty Harriet Stark

In the midst of the Babel Zilda slipped away to make muffins hastily for Gilby’s breakfast.
A Dozen Ways Of Love Lily Dougall

“By Babel streams I have sat and wept” almost ever since I wrote you last.
The Letters of Robert Burns Robert Burns

When this great crowd of two or three thousand are assembled the Babel begins.
Stanley’s Adventures in the Wilds of Africa Joel Tyler Headley and William Fletcher Johnson

noun
(Old Testament)

Also called Tower of Babel. a tower presumptuously intended to reach from earth to heaven, the building of which was frustrated when Jehovah confused the language of the builders (Genesis 11:1–9)
the city, probably Babylon, in which this tower was supposedly built

(often not capital)

a confusion of noises or voices
a scene of noise and confusion

noun
Issak Emmanuilovich (iˈsak imənuˈiləvitʃ) 1894–1941, Russian short-story writer, whose works include Stories from Odessa(1924) and Red Cavalry (1926)

capital of Babylon, late 14c., from Hebrew Babhel (Gen. xi), from Akkadian bab-ilu “Gate of God” (from bab “gate” + ilu “god”). The name is a translation of Sumerian Ka-dingir. Meaning “confused medley of sounds” (1520s) is from the biblical story of the Tower of Babel.

1. A subset of ALGOL 60, with many ALGOL W extensions.
[“BABEL, A New Programming Language”, R.S. Scowen, Natl Phys Lab UK, Report CCU7, 1969].
2. Mentioned in The Psychology of Computer Programming, G.M. Weinberg, Van Nostrand 1971, p.241.
3. A language based on higher-order functions and first-order logic.
[“Graph-Based Implementation of a Functional Logic Language”, H. Kuchen et al, Proc ESOP 90, LNCS 432, Springer 1990, pp.271-290].
[“Logic Programming with Functions and Predicates: The Language BABEL”, Moreno-Navarro et al, J Logic Prog 12(3) (Feb 1992)].
(1994-11-28)

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