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This Proto-Indo-European entry contains reconstructed words and roots. As such, the term(s) in this entry are not directly attested, but are hypothesized to have existed based on comparative evidence.



áyos[1], h₂éyos[2] n ‎(oblique stem *áyes-)

  1. a metal, copper, bronze

Usage notes[edit]

This is the only word in Proto-Indo-European that unequivocally refers to a metal. There is no word for iron and the words for gold and silver seem to mean ”that which shines”, or ”the golden” and ”the silvery”, respectively. In the early Indo-European languages, this word refers to copper (and bronze), and the Proto-Indo-European word refers with absolute certainty to one of these metals, or both. This shows that the Indo-European language was spoken during a time when copper was used.




  1. ^ Don Ringe, From Proto-Indo-European to Proto-Germanic, Oxford University Press, 2006
  2. ^ 2008, Ola Wikander, Ett träd med vida grenar: de indoeuropeiska språkens historia (in Swedish), Stockholm: Prisma, ISBN 978-91-518-5139-6: