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



  • Trubachev (Трубачёв) says Jakobson's etymology is promising, with the verb *slovǫ, *sluti (to speak (understandably)).
  • Vasmer says it has nothing to do with *slava (glory, fame) which influenced it in terms of folk etymology later. *slověne can't be formed from *slovo because *-ěninъ, *-aninъ only occurs in derivations from place names, however a local name *Slovy is not attested. Most likely it's derived from a hydronym.
Compare Old East Slavic Словутичь (Slovutičĭ)Dnepr epithet, Russian Слуя (Sluja) ― affluent of Вазуза (Vazuza), Polish river names Sława, Sławica, Serbo-Croatian Славница and others, which brings together with Ancient Greek κλύζω (klúzō, I lave), κλύζωει (klúzōei) · πλημμυρεῖ (plēmmureî), ῥέει (rhéei), βρύει (brúei), κλύδων (klúdōn, surf), Latin cluō (I clean), cloāca (sewer pipe). Other etymologies are less likely.
  • Bernstein repeats this etymology: from *slawos (people, nation, folk).
  • Maher agrees with Trubachev's connection of it to *sluti (to be known),[1] on the grounds that *slovo (word) is an s-stem, *sloves-, which would have led to an expected form *slovesěni (compare Russian слове́сность (slovésnostʹ).

More at Slavs.


*slověninъ m

  1. Slav


This noun needs an inflection-table template.


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  1. ^ John P. Maher (Chicago) (1970), “The Etymology of Common Slavic slověne 'Slavs'”, in Балканско езикознание [Linguistique balkanique], volume 14, issue 2, Sofia, pages 31–36

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