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This Proto-Germanic 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.



Traditionally thought to be borrowed from Latin cattus, from Afroasiatic. However, this presents problems, and Huehnergard opines it is "equally likely that the forms might derive from an ancient Germanic word, imported into Latin and thence to Greek and to Syriac and Arabic".[1] Kroonen also considers the word to be native to Germanic (due to morphological alternations) and Northern Europe, and suggests that it might ultimately be borrowed from Uralic, cf. Northern Sami gáđfi (female stoat) and Hungarian hölgy (stoat; lady, bride) from Proto-Uralic *käďwä (female (of a fur animal)).[2] See cat for more.



*kattuz m

  1. cat


u-stemDeclension of *kattuz (u-stem)
singular plural
nominative *kattuz *kattiwiz
vocative *kattu *kattiwiz
accusative *kattų *kattunz
genitive *kattauz *kattiwǫ̂
dative *kattiwi *kattumaz
instrumental *kattū *kattumiz

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


Feminine forms descended from *kattō can be found at catta.

  • Old English: catt
    • Middle English: cat
  • Old Saxon: katto
  • Old High German: kazzo
  • Old Norse: kǫttr
  • ? Latin: cattus


  1. ^ John Huehnergard, Qitta: Arabic Cats, in Classical Arabic Humanities in Their Own Terms
  2. ^ Kroonen, Guus (2013), “*kattōn-”, in Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Germanic (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 11), Leiden, Boston: Brill