A name of the Hebrew God, represented in Hebrew by the tetragrammaton ("four letters") יהוה (Yod Heh Vav Heh)
, which was transliterated into Roman script as Y H W H
. Because it was considered blasphemous to utter the name of God, it was only written and never spoken, which resulted in the original pronunciation becoming lost. The name may have originally been derived from the old Semitic root הוה (hawah)
meaning "to be" or "to become".