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Q&A

What does "unused root" mean?

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Often when I search for the origins and meanings of certain words in Tanach, I'll come across something like Strong's saying that it's from or probably from an "unused root". For example:

Strong's Exhaustive Concordance: Kenaz: Probably from an unused root meaning to hunt; hunter; Kenaz, the name of an Edomite and of two Israelites -- Kenaz.

What exactly is an "unused root" and if it's "unused", how does one determine its meaning?

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From ariel.org

What is meant by “unused” root is that though the root of the word has a specific meaning, you will not find that root meaning in literature. Only its derived meanings will be found.

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