Is The Use of The Word, Usury, Anti-Semitic?

Adebayo Adeniran
3 min readJun 8, 2024

This and many other words in the English language.

Pixabay via Pexels

Usury, according the world’s greatest repository of knowledge is defined as follows:

is the practice of making loans that are seen as unfairly enriching the lender. The term may be used in a moral sense — condemning taking advantage of others’ misfortunes — or in a legal sense, where an interest rate is charged in excess of the maximum rate that is allowed by law. A loan may be considered usurious because of excessive or abusive interest rates or other factors defined by the laws of a state. Someone who practices usury can be called a usurer, but in modern colloquial English may be called a loan shark. In many historical societies including ancient Christian, Jewish, and Islamic societies, usury meant the charging of interest of any kind, and was considered wrong, or was made illegal

But wherever you read the word, there was the underlying implication that the person doing the extortion was of a Jewish background.

William Shakespeare is perhaps the greatest writer of all time. And it is no hyperbole to state that his literary output have stood the test of time and no other individual influences our use of the language in the way that he has.

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Adebayo Adeniran

A lifelong bibliophile, who seeks to unleash his energy on as many subjects as possible