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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.



Lycian and Tocharian reflexes necessarily point to *h₂ówis. However, this noun is usually reconstructed as *h₃éwis in order to "account for the Anatolian and Armenian h- and for pervasive o-vocalism, in spite of the Tocharian form, which then remains unexplained" (Lubotsky). Alternatively, acrostatic ablauting *h₂ówi- ~ *h₂éwi- paradigm can be reconstructed (such as the one presented here in the declension table), and then one can "assume that the attested forms have the o-vocalism of the former variant, and the h- of the latter" (Lubotsky).


*h₂ówis or *h₃éwis f

  1. sheep



Many languages (Germanic, Tocharian) show a semantic shift from sheep (male or female) to ewe.

In Balto-Slavic, the PIE root was generalized to form both the nouns for sheep and ram via the usual derivative suffixes, but only the sheep sense is listed here for all of them except for Old Prussian in which the sheep word wasn't recorded. See further on the *ovьnъ.