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This Proto-Slavic 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.



Sometimes explained as a deverbative of *bučati (to make noise, roar) and reconstructed as *bъčela. A bee is, therefore, the one that makes noise.

Alternatively from North-West Proto-Indo-European *bʰi-kʷe- (bee, stinging insect), an extension of root *bʰi- (to hit, strike) - compare *biti (to beat, hit).

In OCS canon, form бьчєла (bĭčela) occurs just once, in Psalterium Sinaiticum, but the form бъчєла (bŭčela) being just as rare, it's impossible to precisely reconstruct late Proto-Slavic form on the basis of Old Church Slavonic. Since this Proto-Slavic word was an oxytone, none of the daughters retain a reflex of the medial weak jer.

Baltic cognates (Latvian bite, Lithuanian bìtė, Old Prussian bitte) would in that case render the Proto-Balto-Slavic forms as *bikelē and *bitē.

Indo-European cognates include Old Irish bech (Irish beach), Old High German bīa, Old English bēo (English bee), Dutch bij, dialectal German Beie (German Biene), Old Norse (Danish bi).


*bьčelà f

  1. bee


See also[edit]