Reconstruction:Proto-Sino-Tibetan/s-na ~ s-naːr

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This Proto-Sino-Tibetan 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.



  • Proto-Sino-Tibetan: ?
    • Proto-Tibeto-Burman: *s-na ⪤ *s-naːr (Matisoff, STEDT); *s-na (LaPolla, 1987; French, 1983; Benedict, 1972)

A convincing Chinese comparanda appears to be lacking. The Chinese word for "nose" ( < OC *m-bit-s, "nose; to smell; loop handle, handling loop (of a utensil); origin, basis") < ( < OC *S.bit-s, "nose > self (?); to follow") is from Proto-Sino-Tibetan *bi (nose). Zhou Jixu has proposed that Chinese , (niǔ < OC *n‹r›uʔ, "(*protruding part?) > knot (used as handle), button, fastener; origin, basis"), , ( < OC *nuk, njuk, "nose bleeding") (all containing the phonetic component (chǒu < OC *n̥ruʔ)) are reflexes of this root. The connection between "knot" and "nose" is also seen in Korean (ko, "nose; snivel; tip, cap; stitch, link, knot").

Note that Proto-Sino-Tibetan has the same root *na for "ear" and "nose", distinguishing their meanings only with prefixes ("ear": *r/g-na). A parallelism exists in Chinese (wén < OC *mun, "to smell; to hear").

Compare Proto-Indo-European *neh₂s- ~ *nh₂es- (possibly < **sna ("nose"), "nose, nostril", whence English nose, Latin nāsus) and various nose-related words in English: snout, snort, sniff, snuff, sniffle, snuffle, snivel, snore, sneer, snitch, sneeze, snot, etc.


*s-na ~ s-naːr

  1. nose


  • Himalayish
    • Tibeto-Kanauri
      • Bodic
        • Tibetan
          • Written Tibetan: སྣ (sna, nose)
      • Tamangic
        *ᴬʰna, *ᴮʰnaː, *ᴬʰnaː (Mazaudon, 1994)
    • Newar
  • Tangut-Qiang
    • Northern Tangut
      • Tangut: 𗮮 (nji, /*ɲɪː³⁵/, nose)
    • rGyalrongic
  • Lolo-Burmese-Naxi
    • Lolo-Burmese
      • Burmish
        • Burmese: နှာ (hna, nose; errhine, snuff)
      • Loloish
        • Northern Loloish
          • Yi (Liangshan): (hna, nose) (in compounds also (hnap))
  • Karenic:

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]