From Middle English Temese, from Old English Temes, Temese (cognate with Welsh Tafwys), from Latin Tamesis, Tamesas, possibly from Proto-Celtic *tamesās (“river, waters”, literally “darkness”), masculine ā-stem of *tames, s-stem of Proto-Indo-European *tm̥Hes-, zero-grade of *témHes-, *témHos- (“darkness”), from *temH- (“dark”). Related to Proto-Celtic *temeslos (“darkness”), *temos (“dark”).
A parallel in Proto-Celtic of "dark, darkness" taking on the figurative meaning of "water" can also be found in Proto-Celtic *dubros (“water, dark”), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰubrós (“dark”), yielding Welsh dŵr (“water”), Irish dobhar (“water, sea, dark, gloomy”).
Possible cognates include the names of rivers and tributaries such as:
- Tamar (from Latin Tamarus), Tavy, Teifi (from Welsh Teifi, from Old Welsh Tebi, Teibi), Teme, and Teviot (Latin Tefius, Teifius) in Great Britain
- Tambre (from Latin Tamaris), Támega (in Galician, Portuguese Tâmega, Latin Tamice), Támoga or Támboga (Latin Tamega), and Tamuxe, all of them flowing through Galicia (Spain) and northern Portugal
- Tamaran in France
- Tammaro (from Latin Tamarus) in Italy
- Demer in Belgium
- Tamyras in Phoenicia
- (rivers in England and Canada, town in New Zealand): enPR: tĕmz, IPA(key): /tɛmz/
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- (river in Connecticut): IPA(key): /θeɪmz/
- River in southern England flowing 336 km (209 mi.) through London to the North Sea.
- River in Ontario province, Canada, flowing 258 km (160 mi.) to Lake St. Clair.
- River in the U.S. State of Connecticut flowing 24 km (15 mi.) past New London to Long Island Sound.
- A town in the North Island of New Zealand, situated on the Firth of Thames (a large bay) and the Coromandel Peninsula.
- A surname.
- ^ Mallory, J. P.; Adams, D. Q., editors (1997) Encyclopedia of Indo-European culture, London, Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, page 147
- ^ Matasović, Ranko (2009) Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Celtic (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 9), Leiden: Brill, →ISBN, page 378
- ^ Kitson, Peter R. (1996), “British and European River Names”, in Transactions of the Philological Society, volume 94, issue 2, DOI:10.1111/j.1467-968X.1996.tb01178.x, pages 73–118
- ^ Jackson, Kenneth H. (1955), “The Problem of the Picts”, in Wainright, F. T., editors, The Pictish Language, Edinburgh: Nelson, pages 129–166
- ^ Coates, Richard (1998), “A new explanation of the name of London”, in Transactions of the Philological Society, volume 96, issue 2, DOI:10.1111/1467-968X.00027, pages 203–229
- Falileyev, Alexander (2010) Dictionary of Continental Celtic Place-names: A Celtic Companion to the Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World, CMCS Publications, →ISBN
- ^ Delamarre, Xavier (2012) Noms de lieux celtiques de l'Europe ancienne (-500 / +500): dictionnaire, Arles: Errance, →ISBN