μέλας

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See also: μελάς and Μέλας

Ancient Greek[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Proto-Indo-European *melh₂-. The feminine -αινα (-aina) originates from *-ih₂; see -ια (-ia) Cognates include Sanskrit मल (mala, dirt, filth, dust), Latvian melns, and Old Prussian melne.

Pronunciation[edit]

 
  • (5th BCE Attic) IPA(key): /mé.laːs/
  • (1st CE Egyptian) IPA(key): /ˈmɛ.las/
  • (4th CE Koine) IPA(key): /ˈme.las/
  • (10th CE Byzantine) IPA(key): /ˈme.las/
  • (15th CE Constantinopolitan) IPA(key): /ˈme.las/
  • Adjective[edit]

    μέλᾱς (mélāsm (feminine μέλαινᾰ, neuter μέλᾰν); first/third declension

    1. dark in color; sometimes so dark as to lack color, black
      • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Odyssey 5.262
        ἐν δέ οἱ ἀσκὸν ἔθηκε θεᾱ̀ μέλανος (ϝ)οἴνοιο
        en dé hoi askòn éthēke theā̀ mélanos (w)oínoio
        On [the raft] the goddess put a skin of dark wine.
    2. (figuratively) evil, black, dark
      • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 2.834
        τὼ δέ οἱ οὔ τι πειθέσθην· κῆρες γὰρ ἄγον μέλανος θανάτοιο
        tṑ dé hoi oú ti peithésthēn; kêres gàr ágon mélanos thanátoio
        But the two did not listen at all, for the fates of black death were leading them on.
    3. (figuratively) dark, obscure
    4. (of the voice) indistinct
    5. (medicine) causing black secretions

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