Wiktionary:Etymology scriptorium/2017/December

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Russian 'sorok', Armenian 'čork', Persian 'čârak', Turkic 'kırk'[edit]

It is discussed since at least two centuries: Russian sorok 'forty' seems to be a Tataric intrusion between IE 'thirty' and IE 'fifty'.

Armenian čork 'four' highly resembles Russian sorok 'forty', Persian چارک‏ (čârak) "qaurter", and it's alleged centum-Turkic counterpart kırk 'forty'. But Chuvash is out of every context, when all other Turkic languages have dört/tört ("four"), the Chuvash language has тӑват (tăvat ~ spoken as tauat "four") which is quite similar to PIE *kʷet- 'four', just that the PIE *k turned into a Chuvash *t. The Chuvash form is the only Turkic form which highly resembles Italic quadri- 'quarter', from the same PIE root *kʷet-.

This must be solved, because it is very interesting. Is it IE, Turkic or maybe even Nostratic? What are your opinions? Does anybody have books or academic publications regarding this issue?

Btw, here is a similar case with Russian собака (sobaka), Median σπάκα (spaka), Turkic köpek, all meaning 'dog'. Compare PIE root *ḱwṓ and its relation to PST *d-kʷəj-n, while PST even preserved the centum and satem prefixes *d-k. ToB commented on it as well. --2A02:908:B36:A1C0:0:0:0:1 17:04, 1 December 2017 (UTC)

Turkic *ȫ is reflected as Chuvash -ӑва- in many words, and disappearance of *r preconsonantally is also found in other words, it is without reasonable doubt cognate with other Turkic four words.
As for Armenian, our page seems to imply that it is regularly derived from the PIE word. I'm not sure about the details, but I know that *-s corresponds usually to -kʿ and that *kʷ is palatalized into čʿ, I don't know what's the regular outcome of *-tw- is but *t is generally unstable so maybe it contracted into o, thus I'd wager that it is inherited from PIE.
As for сорок, I think that any similarity to *kɨrk is coincidental, the Greek and the Scandinavian etymologies offered in Vasmer both seem more promising. Crom daba (talk) 00:39, 2 December 2017 (UTC)


Seemingly a non-Sino-Tibetan loanword. Hope someone can dig out its etymology. Dokurrat (talk) 16:42, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

It's most likely from Zhuang, which uses the same character in Sawndip. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 20:08, 3 December 2017 (UTC)
@Dokurrat, confirmed with Xinhua Zidian (10th ed.). — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 04:30, 8 December 2017 (UTC)


This Swahili word meaning "cardamom" is really bothering me. It clearly is related to the terms I see in Indian languages, but Hindi and Gujarati don't match up quite well enough phonetically. (I'd be curious if Kutchi is a better fit.) —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 08:11, 6 December 2017 (UTC)

@Metaknowledge: Tamil ஏலக்காய் (ēlakkāy), Malayalam ഏലക്കായ് (ēlakkāy)? Maybe it's of Dravidian origin? —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 00:30, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Is there a Proto-Dravidian term? I think the Sanskrit एला (elā) is also of Dravidian origin. DerekWinters (talk) 00:50, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge: Sanskrit also has diminutive एलीका (elīkā, small cardamom). --Victar (talk) 01:25, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for the cognates. None of them seem like a great match in terms of phonetics or history, so I'm still at a loss. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:22, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge: Sanskrit एला (elā) > एलीका (elīkā, small cardamom) > Hindi [Term?]? > Swahili iliki seems very compelling to me. @AryamanA, what are your thoughts? --Victar (talk) 21:01, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
That would be potentially compelling if it didn't have an imaginary step. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 21:12, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge: It's enough to say "perhaps ultimately from {{der|sw|sa|एलीका|t=small cardamom}}". Incomplete, yes, but an etymology nonetheless. --Victar (talk) 22:50, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Victar: (I wrote a response twice and I got an invalid API token error, so I'm going to make this short) Hindi इलायची (ilāyacī) is not from Sanskrit, it's < Persian < Dravidian. I think the Swahili term is borrowed directly from Dravidian (although maybe it could have been a Wanderwort given its spread into Iranian). —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 23:23, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@AryamanA: Ah, OK. So, perhaps: Ultimately from Proto-Dravidian *ēlakāy (cardamom fruit) (compare Kannada ಏಲಕ್ಕಿ (ēlakki)), from *ēla (cardamom plant) +‎ *kāy (fruit). The etymology of mango is similar, from Proto-Dravidian *mā-ng-kāy. --Victar (talk) 02:28, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
@Victar: Yes, exactly! btw, if you ever want to learn about Proto-Dravidian, this is a wonderful book. —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 02:34, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
@AryamanA: Thanks! I was reading A Comparative Grammar of the Dravidian Or South-Indian Family of Languages. --Victar (talk) 02:38, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
@Victar: Dravidian linguistics has come far since then; for example, the "discovery" of the North Dravidian languages (as far north as Brahui in Pakistan) has aided the comparative process immensely. It's definitely still in its infancy, less developed than Indo-Iranian studies, and mainstream Indology still focuses a lot more on Indo-Aryan peoples. @माधवपंडित probably can help as a native Kannada speaker. —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 02:42, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge I've compiled a list of descendants from the Proto-Dravidian *ēlakāy. Punjabi ਇਲੈਚੀ (ilēcī) looks like the closest match. --Victar (talk) 17:11, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
Yah welcome. --Victar (talk) 02:11, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
See also this, page 83b. --Vahag (talk) 17:59, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
It says "Ind", but does that mean "Indo-Aryan" or "Indian"? —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 14:36, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
It means "Indian (Hindi, Gujerati, etc.)". --Vahag (talk) 15:53, 10 December 2017 (UTC)

PIE *kʷis > *kʷís[edit]

Correct me if I'm wrong, but *kʷis should be moved to *kʷís. If no one objects, can someone run a bot to point all links to the new entry page? --Victar (talk) 00:02, 7 December 2017 (UTC)

If you just move it and keep the redirect, there's no need for a bot to change existing pages. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 11:36, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Why do we need to mark accents on monosyllabic PIE words? --Tropylium (talk) 13:58, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Tropylium: Sanskrit किः (kíḥ) exhibits the accent, as do all other PIE pronouns: *éǵh₂, *túh₂, *swé, *só, *éy. --Victar (talk) 18:36, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
That doesn't answer the question. There's nowhere else for the accent to go, so it's superfluous to mark. --Tropylium (talk) 18:56, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Tropylium: Call it a stylistic preference than, if that better suits you. --Victar (talk) 19:07, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
If you assume that every word must have an accent then yes, it's superfluous. But what if there is a distinction between accented and accentless, as appears to be the case for certain function words in PIE? Proto-Germanic *immi and *sindi must come from accentless forms. —Rua (mew) 19:18, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
I still think it would be preferable for us to treat PIE accent as a strippable diacritic, like pitch accent marks in Serbo-Croatian or macrons in Latin and Old English. Then we could write {{m|ine-pro|*kʷís}} if we wanted to and it would still link to *kʷis. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 21:43, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Oh, that's a better idea. Accents are clearly relevant info in general, but I also see word-level reconstructions without accents quite often, which can make linking them more work than necessary. (And, obviously, we don't always have enough information to reconstruct the PIE accent.) --Tropylium (talk) 09:58, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
@Mahagaja: I could just do that. --Victar (talk) 18:36, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Tropylium:, Answering your question. There are unaccented monosyllabic pronouns like *toy *moy and *soy, and probably adverbs like *eǵʰs. So it's not redundant to mark accented monosyllabic words. --Tom 144 (talk) 03:39, 31 December 2017 (UTC)


The current-listed Chinese sense smells like a neologism to me. Is that sense a neologism? (How early can that sense be attested?) Dokurrat (talk) 18:29, 7 December 2017 (UTC)

جيب,‎ جیب[edit]

Who has borrowed from whom?

The word is old in Arabic, it is used as “neckline” and “opening in garment” in the Qur'an. Thinking about the raiments the Arabs wore, the meaning “pocket” could easily have developed from this; a word “gayb” meaning “pocket” is given as Ge'ez from Arabic by Wolf Leslau. Whereas the Persian is stated to be from an unattested Middle Persian – btw there is a transcription needed in the Persian entry. Sounds like an invention of Indo-Europeanists. diff has removed all the etymologies from the Arabic. However some words still refer to the Arabic as origin, as ჯიბე (ǯibe). And Petar Skok says the word is ultimately from Arabic. However I do not know what or whom to trust. I am confused. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 20:06, 7 December 2017 (UTC)

e in the descendants reflects /eː/ in Persian, which suggests it is probably a genuine Persian word. --Z 20:29, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
I also thought that. Arabic /aj/ can come from that vowel in Persian. But do we have two words in Arabic then or one? Is it that a “neckline” word mixed its semantic range into the “pocket” word or do we have one word with an “opening in garment“ meaning from the beginning from which more special meanings derive, “pocket” in Persian and Arabic, which alone has been given to Geʿez, and “neckline”, “hollow” and “bosom”, “sinus” in Arabic?
However still it is disturbing that in Arabic the word is so early while the Persian claims a non-attested predecessor (still the transliteration of the Modern Persian is lacking as I write; I could think it is not current which is why the Persian editors do not know its transliteration). Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 20:42, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
The connection to Polish szew and Russian шов (šov) seems very dubious to me. These come from the verb Proto-Slavic *šiti, which according to the current etymology section comes from Proto-Balto-Slavic *sjū́ˀtei, from Proto-Indo-European *syuh₁-. --WikiTiki89 20:48, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Right, Persian ǰ comes from PIE /ɡ/ as I see. The etymology in the Persian looks nonsensical this way. I’d like to know who has set this etymology into the world. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 21:34, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
diff by @Irman has. No hits on Google Books for this or similar etymology, though PIE guys are assiduous and have like reconstructed all IE languages, unlike it is for Semitic. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 21:39, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
I'd go with Arabic, I've flipped through some Iranic material I have and found nothing in Gharib (Sogdian), Benzing (Kwarezmian), Morgenstierne (Pashto), Mayrhofer...
Connection with šav is of course total nonsense as noted above. Crom daba (talk) 23:06, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Why is that Iranian etymology added again in diff by @Irman? Now it is explained by a verb آجیدن (âjidan, to sew, stich, baste) that does not seem to match. @Crom daba Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 20:52, 22 December 2017 (UTC)
Lokotsch, Karl (1927) Etymologisches Wörterbuch der europäischen Wörter orientalischen Ursprungs (in German), Heidelberg: Carl Winter’s Universitätsbuchhandlung, page 51 it is also declared as from Arabic. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 21:03, 22 December 2017 (UTC)
I don't speak any Persian, could you please handle this @ZxxZxxZ? Crom daba (talk) 22:35, 22 December 2017 (UTC)
What I want to point out that it is especially remarkable that none of the typical sources ascribing to Arabic words foreign sources mention the word, as for example Jeffery, Arthur (1938) The Foreign Vocabulary of the Qurʾān (Gaekwad’s Oriental Series; 79), Baroda: Oriental Institute. It does not look that anybody ever thought that this isn’t an Arabic word.
Also, if Crom daba says that the word is not found in those Iranian languages, one has to ask Irman which words are else descendant of that Middle Iranian *ǰēb; he cannot posit such a thing if there are no other languages having it. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 10:35, 23 December 2017 (UTC)


RFV of the etymology.

Discussion moved from Wiktionary:Requests for cleanup#araba.

An anon added an alternative etymology which doesn't look right to me. I'm no expert, but the new etymology needs verification and most of all a cleanup. --Robbie SWE (talk) 18:28, 7 December 2017 (UTC)

See Fedotov's Etimologicheskij Slovar' Chuvashkogo Jazyka Tom II page 284 --2001:A98:C060:80:7070:6FDD:6A44:22CC 11:42, 8 December 2017 (UTC)

Wiktionary doesn't accept Altaic, but we do mention it. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:52, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
'Altaic' doesn't need to imply a genetic connection, merely that it belongs to a prehistoric layer of shared Turco-Mongolo-Tungusic lexicon.
However in this case, the comparison with Mongolian араа (araa) is spurious, the meaning of the word is 'cogwheel' not 'wheel' and it proceeds from the sense 'tooth'.
The Chuvash form is real and it should date to before the 13th century judging by the raising of *a, but it isn't attested in Old Turkic.
@ZxxZxxZ, Palaestrator verborum, do you have anything on the etymology of عرابه, عربة. ?
Crom daba (talk) 23:08, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
The Arabic عَرَبَة (ʿaraba) exhibits a perfectly clear native pattern and a cogent derivation; it is a singulative noun (ـَة (-a)) formed of a verbal noun عَرَب (ʿarab), عَرْب (ʿarb) from عَرَبَ (ʿaraba, to be fledged, to flow sharply), and also the primitive meaning of عَرَبَة (ʿaraba) is swift river. From there chariots moving forward like a river. See the root in Freytag’s lexicon:
Freytag, Georg (1835), “عَرَبَ”, in Lexicon arabico-latinum praesertim ex Djeuharii Firuzabadiique et aliorum Arabum operibus adhibitis Golii quoque et aliorum libris confectum (in Latin), volume 3, Halle: C. A. Schwetschke, page 129
The other languages show the specialization typical for loanwoards. But more important from the semantic side is: It is unconceivable why the Arabs should have borrowed the word for “wain”. Because how did the Arabs live in relation to the exterior world? By caravans. The Arabs are the people one regards if one thinks about commerce by carriages. They have invented own words from their own sources because this is how they have lived before presumable contacts.
And I have the word in other semitic languages: Remarkably Akkadian with the same developments 𒆭𒊏 (erēbu, to come in, specifically of money, goods, caravan, month, season, water: to come in , to arrive , to flow in (?)) – this is now listed at غَرَبَ (ḡaraba) instead, and the dictionary lists for Akkadian also “9) sun: to set”. This is an interesting mixup in the languages or dictionaries of *ʿaraba- and *ġaraba- that should be disentangled – the Ugaritic 𐎓𐎗𐎁 (ʿrb, enter) listed at غَرَبَ (ḡaraba) seems misplaced as in Ugaritic the two consonants do not merge, the meanings in the entry are contradictory. @Wikitiki89 @Crom daba. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 00:25, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
That's very informative, thank you. I consider the Altaic proposition falsified. Crom daba (talk) 01:01, 9 December 2017 (UTC)

Susan and related words (zšn, שושן, ܫܘܫܢܬܐ, سوسن, շուշան, etc.)[edit]

We seem to have two competing hypotheses of the origin of these words circulating on Wiktionary: one claiming an origin from Egyptian zšn and one from Proto-Semitic *šūšān-.

  • Regarding the former hypothesis (origin from Egyptian), this apparently goes back to this 1892 paper by Adolf Erman. Erman simply comments, ‘Die sem. Worte sind entlehnt zu einer Zeit, als das ägypt. Wort schon wie im Kopt. šôšĕn lautete.’ So this would have be a rather late borrowing into Semitic, sometime during or after Late Egyptian (post-1300 BCE or so, possibly later). Is such a date plausible? Are the Semitic words attested earlier than this? (Also in support of this hypothesis is Černý, referencing this paper.)
  • Regarding the latter hypothesis (origin from Semitic), unfortunately I’m not very familiar with the Semitistic literature; any help/sources/info would be appreciated. Presumably the Egyptian word would in this case be cognate via Proto-Afro-Asiatic *susan-. Proto-Semitic *š, however, is generally not considered to regularly correspond to Egyptian z or š but only to s, making cognacy unlikely. Perhaps the Egyptian word was an early borrowing? It would have to be a prehistoric one if so, since zšn is already attested in the Old Kingdom. Tracing back the sound changes in Coptic ϣⲱϣⲉⲛ (šōšen) implies Old Egyptian */ˈzaːçVn/ (with unknown short vowel V), which seems a rather poor fit for a borrowing from Proto-Semitic *šūšān-. So I’m not sure what to make of this. Would the similarity of ϣⲱϣⲉⲛ (šōšen) to the Semitic words just be a coincidence?

All in all, very puzzling. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 08:20, 9 December 2017 (UTC)

As another point of interest, the Akkadian term 𒋗𒊭𒉡 (šūšanu) given at *šūšān- is claimed by the the Assyrian Dictionary of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago to originally mean ‘horse trainer, groom for horses’ and to be a loan from Indo-Iranian aśva-śani, so it likely shouldn’t be on that page at all. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 13:49, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
Well, after digging around a bit, I’ve found that the source of the Proto-Semitic etymology is StarLing, who in turn gets it from Orel and Stolbova’s Hamito-Semitic Etymological Dictionary, that the Akkadian word was mistranscribed, and that even there in Orel and Stolbova it suggests the Semitic was possibly borrowed from Egyptian. Orel and Stolbova attribute the š in the Egyptian word to dissimilation. All very well, but they mistakenly write the z in the Egyptian word as an s, which wasn’t the case until Middle Egyptian. With an original z instead of an s (as attested in Old Egyptian), the possibility of deriving this from a Proto-Afro-Asiatic *susan- is not really there. Given all the above problems with connecting the Egyptian with the Semitic if the former isn’t a borrowing, the most likely option seems to be that it is one. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 16:19, 13 December 2017 (UTC)


Dubious etymology. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 19:42, 10 December 2017 (UTC)

Concur; it's garbage. I'm going to replace it with something from Beekes 2009. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 19:54, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
@Hillcrest98: thank you. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:24, 10 December 2017 (UTC)

Italian palanca[edit]

What's the semantic link between "money" and "board"? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:34, 11 December 2017 (UTC)

My first association (helped by superficial similarity) is with bank, which went through shelf > table > money change's table > bank > money (slang), perhaps skipping the bank sense in this case, but this is just guesswork. Crom daba (talk) 09:44, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
@Per utramque cavernam: The semantic connexion is coincidental; please see the updated etymologies. Isomorphyc (talk) 14:27, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
@Per utramque cavernam:Some Italians hesitate to term the semantic connection coincidental, i.e. they follow the above reasoning rooted in the idea of plunking cash on a barrelhead or whatever, as in planking a bet, or consider the flat shape of the coin. Pianigiani, not always reliable, refers to sheet metal, as in planchet, and the more scholarly DELI reports the blanca etymon but notes it is problematic. The idea of slapping coins on the table in the popular imagination of this word owes much a folk song. Ph7five (talk) 16:24, 3 January 2018 (UTC)

Democracy is simply "people-think" as in "consensus" ?[edit]

Demos is clearly "people" in the Eleni. What about -cracia/-cracy? Its actual meaning seems to be vaguely defined. Similar in form to -gracia, as in grace. One definition points to an idea of substance at the literal root of cracia. In essence its just what people think, isn't it? Where substance is a lateral reference to thinking. -Booksnarky (talk) 06:13, 11 December 2017 (UTC)

@Booksnarky: This is a dictionary, not an encyclopedia or a public forum. If you want to know what democracy is, read definitions first, then some other materials of your choice. If you're not happy with our definitions, you can discuss them at WT:RFT. It's a wrong place for your philosophical questions, that's why it was removed earlier. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:20, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
@Booksnarky: What the people want to say to you: You either know English badly or are not very smart. If you would deal more with philosophy, you would not talk about things like “idea of substance”, “in essence”, “lateral reference to thinking”. That’s not how people think. So please read some philosophy. Read George Berkeley or David Hume for example, to name some English-language philosophers. Really, do it, it helps. Palaestrator verborum (loquier) 06:03, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
Read the etymology at democracy, which clearly explains that democracy means "rule by the people". It looks to me like you're ignoring the actual etymology (by pretending that things are "vaguely defined") so you can speculate without interference from the facts. The history of language and words is a fascinating subject, but it won't tell you anything about what people mean when they say something, nor will it lead you to any deeper meanings underlying what people think. There are plenty of examples such as "nice" where the meaning has changed beyond recognition from what etymology would suggest. You're basically using the wrong tool for the job and looking in the wrong place. Chuck Entz (talk) 14:29, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
The request was for the etymology of -cracy/-cracia/-crasia. The pat definition of "rule by the people" doesn't address the decomposition of democracy and its containment of /-crasia. Thank you for the serious responses. And I "know English" fine-ly, thanks, and don't honor the incivility.Booksnarky (talk) 04:49, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
@Booksnarky: See -cracy. It's from Ancient Greek -κρατία (-kratía). —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 12:15, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
The palatalization of the t in such environments and the transformation of -ia to y is the expected outcome in the transition from Latin to Old French, and these words ending in -cracy regularly have corresponding words ending in -crat and -cratic. As I said, this is all very basic and well established- you just choose to ignore the obvious. Being able to speak modern Greek doesn't give you a license to rewrite the history and usage of words derived from Ancient Greek. As for the quality of your English: it's not nearly as good as you think it is, and the fact that you use words in ways that nobody else does adds a layer of gibberish that makes it harder for others to understand you. Chuck Entz (talk) 15:14, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
Can you provide a source, off hand or in a few days, for the theorem that there was some palatization of t in /-crasia from /-kratia? Its interesting, that sound transformation happened here without semantic transformation, and needs documentation. -Booksnarky (talk) 08:09, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
"that sound transformation happened here without semantic transformation" We've got a lot of words that don't have much semantic shift despite many many sound changes. love, young, light (substance that allows us to see), light (not heavy), night, wasp, hound (dog), beaver, worm, am, is, I, bear (to carry around), mother, father, brother, tooth, tongue, mouse, deep, etc. in particular hadn't moved many inches in meaning in 4000-6000 years. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 17:02, 16 December 2017 (UTC)
  • What doncha understand about palatalization? Wouldja benefit from a couple examples? It's a very common phonological process, and (other than possible sociolaectal connotations) it generally doesn't have much semantic implication. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 19:41, 19 December 2017 (UTC)

nước miếng[edit]

RFV of the etymology. ばかFumikotalk 20:50, 12 December 2017 (UTC)

@Fumiko Take, PhanAnh123 Some relevant discussions I found:
  1. “Tiêng (?) nước tôi - Tiếng Việt mến yêu”, Kiến thức ngày nay, số 926, ngày 1-5-2016, tr. 11-12.
    Đồng hóa là hiện tượng hai âm khác nhau nhưng đứng gần nhau, âm này đã bị âm kia đồng hóa, là làm cho âm này giống với nó, như chỉ trỏ thành chỉ chỏ, rũ liệt thành rũ riệt (đống hóa âm đầu), phản ánh thành phả ảnh, tự vẫn thành tự vận, nước miệng thành nước miếng (đồng hóa thanh điệu), y nguyên thành y nguy, cà dái dê thành cà dế dê (đồng hóa vần).
  2. Nguyễn Cung Thông, “Tản Mạn Về Tiếng Việt ― Hiện Tượng Đồng Hoá Âm Thanh” (phần 1)
    Ngoài ra một dạng chữ Nôm dùng 𠰘 chỉ miệng cũng như miếng (nước miếng), do đó ta có cơ sở để đề nghị nước miếng là nước miệng, nhưng đã bị ảnh hưởng của thanh sắc (nước) để cho ra dạng nước miếng hiện nay.
Not sure if they are reliable, but may be helpful. Wyang (talk) 14:35, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
The first one cite some instances that might be considered "common misspelling" (chỉ chỏ, phản ảnh) and it doesn't cite any other source; itself seems to be an excerpt, but no original author's name is given. The second seems a little more convincing, although as many references as it cites (and as terribly unreadable as it is), none is credited as directly proving the theory it offers. The given etymology does seem probable though, although I'm still curious if it has any link to miếng. Not to discredit @PhanAnh123 entirely, but he seems to make sloppy errors (like the typical Southerners' confusion between hỏi and ngã) quite often. ばかFumikotalk 15:01, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
I think PhanAnh123 probably has a source when he wrote the etymology. He does err occasionally (like all of us!), but he has been instrumental in expanding the Proto-Vietic/PMK etymology and Vietnamese language coverage here. I quite like his work, finding his etymologies oftentimes a pleasure to read. Wyang (talk) 15:32, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
Chill out, I of all people should know that humans make mistakes. It's just that his mistakes are often so fundamental that they make me doubt his judgment. Think of it like this, if a guy who said "for all intensive purposes" made bold claims about the English language, would you find it doubtful? ばかFumikotalk 17:22, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
Fumiko-san, I think your criticism is too harsh. Please raise any fundamental error when you see them so that they can be avoided in the future. Feedback on the things only, not people. The etymology here doesn’t at all look implausible to me, in fact it is quite likely correct. User:PhanAnh123: Please discuss the source if you can. Please don’t be discouraged. Wyang (talk) 04:58, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Category:Thai terms derived from Hainanese[edit]

@Octahedron80, Iudexvivorum, how do you know that these terms are specifically from Hainanese and not any other variety of Chinese? — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 22:25, 12 December 2017 (UTC)

@Justinrleung: Personally, I rely on these notes. --iudexvivorum (talk) 00:11, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
As above. However, if it seemed to relate with many cognates, it could be superseded by Middle/Old Chinese. (So it would disappear from the Hainanese category.) --Octahedron80 (talk) 03:06, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
@Octahedron80, Iudexvivorum: Alright, thanks! — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 05:06, 14 December 2017 (UTC)


This entry lacks an etymology. The word seems to originate with a Texas company that registered it as a US trademark in 1980. Is this considered a sufficient etymology? Or does the etymology section need to document how this company derived the name (e.g., as a variant on cosy, as the page currently speculates)? 2605:A601:4100:3300:2306:3E9B:EE82:C306 02:05, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

It's from cozy, in fact earliest mentions of it (1990's) were as such (e.g. beer cozy) Leasnam (talk) 03:52, 20 December 2017 (UTC)

PIE transcription cleanup[edit]

Anyone up for the following project: as long as Index:Proto-Indo-European is not updated (going on 5 years now), it might be a good idea to go through the lists manually to:

  1. mark incorrect transcription,
  2. fix descendants that link to these,
  3. strikeout entries that are no longer linked to.

A few common errors that can be semi-mechanically weeded out:

  • Missing hyphens for roots: CVC for CVC-
  • Aspirates: bh, dh, gh for , ,
  • Semivowels: i, u, ei, eu etc. for y, w, ey, ew etc.
  • Seṭ roots: CVCə for CVCH (specifying CHCh₁, CVCh₂, CVCh₃ requires more care though)

There are further issues, but this would do for starters. --Tropylium (talk) 10:17, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

@Tropylium: I might be able to help, but I don't understand this sentence: "as long as Index:Proto-Indo-European is not updated (going on 5 years now), it might be a good idea to go through the lists manually". Why "as long as"? Do you mean "automatically updated"? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 14:18, 19 December 2017 (UTC)
Many of the incorrect mentions/links have already been cleaned up, and it's hard to say how much work there would be left if we had a freshly extracted index to work with. Also, if we were getting updates to the index regularly, there would be no point to manually marking entries as cleaned-up; they'd just disappear when the next version of the index rolled in. (There would still be PIE links to fix, but less need to coordinate this.) --Tropylium (talk) 00:16, 20 December 2017 (UTC)
Honestly, our etymology sections could do with the same treatment. Some care should be taken, though. While "bh" on its own is not valid, "bh₁" is perfectly valid. And a bot can't know when a term is a root, so it doesn't know when to add a hyphen. Another possible fix is ĝ > ǵ, likewise for any other palatovelar. We could also try modifying Module:links to check for invalid characters in links, and tag them in some form if they are found. This could probably be tied into the standardChars mechanic: an additional standardCharsInLinks = true in the language data will cause Module:links to perform the check. —Rua (mew) 18:40, 19 December 2017 (UTC)
@Rua: How about doing it in Module:script utilities? There's already a tracking function that is run for all text being language-tagged. — Eru·tuon 04:04, 20 December 2017 (UTC)


@Stephen G. Brown: RFV of the etymology. Derivation from Spanish vaca seems unlikely on phonological grounds: why would the Spanish /a/ vowel become an /e/ vowel, and where does the -shii come from? —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 12:37, 15 December 2017 (UTC)

It's mentioned in Young & Morgan's The Navajo Language, A Grammar and Colloquial Dictionary. When borrowing a word from another language, Navajo vowels often are not very faithful to the original. They are subject to vowel harmony, and other influences depending on surrounding consonants and tones. Also, being a prefixing language, the beginning of borrowed words are frequently analyzed as Navajo prefixes. The prefix means "for their sake" (which does not make sense in this word), while béé means "with them" and sounds more natural. —Stephen (Talk) 19:09, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
I see no reason to doubt this. Also, it probably did not come directly from Spanish, and was more likely mediated by another Amerindian language (see Pipil wakash and other cognates mentioned there to get an idea of how the word was adapted in Mesoamerica). —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:13, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
OK, thanks for your help! —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 19:29, 15 December 2017 (UTC)

Ἕλενος and Ἑλένη[edit]

Their etymologies are circular. — Ungoliant (falai) 19:10, 15 December 2017 (UTC)

Wikipedia says "etymology uncertain". Crom daba (talk) 19:15, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
Beekes has no idea either, but he does mention a 1978 hypothesis in Glotta that claimed that it was cognate to Sanskrit स्वरति. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 00:21, 16 December 2017 (UTC)
I have a hypothesis, and I guess I'm not the first one to see it. I wouldn't mention it, but the potential cognate affirms my idea - if I read the translation correctly. स्वर् is given as root of the term mentioned - स्वरति (svarati) - and on the other hand it's translated as Sun with a comprehensive etymology - ultimately from *sóh₂wl̥ - cognate with ... Ancient Greek ἥλιος (hḗlios). Now my idea might be a false etymology, but those are generally involved with foundation myths, so hear me out, please.
I suspect a connection between *kel- and *(s)kew-, as the sky is metaphorically called the ceiling of the earth. I suspected *kel- to be at least cognate to the ancient demonym of the Greeks. Because the sun is in the sky, and because both sun and sky are variously significant in pagan religions, I suppose that a relation between those is not too far fetched. Whereas *kel- lends itself well to a more trivial demonym, in the sense of civilized.
All that is just supposed to mean, that the etymon in question is too convoluted to give a single root. The point of interest however is that I was wondering whether there is the remote chance the h in helen could be derived from a frictive (laryngeal?). Rhyminreason (talk) 17:32, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

French assembler[edit]

Copy-paste from Appendix talk:Romance doublets

I'm a bit bothered by the TLFi etymology of French assembler. Do we really need to reconstruct a Vulgar Latin *assimulo? After all, assimiloassimulo are attested. Is there such a semantic gap between Classical assimilo–assimulo and Vulgar *assimulo that we need to posit a second verb coined entirely anew?

Classical assimulo: "to make similar" > "to compare, to put side by side" > "to put together, to bring together" doesn't seem extremely far-fetched to me. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 12:27, 16 December 2017 (UTC)

We have a bunch of Vulgar Latin entries for attested lemmas. We should delete all of them. Some are already in WT:RFDO. —Rua (mew) 18:30, 16 December 2017 (UTC)
@Rua: I know, I'm keeping a list at Category talk:Vulgar Latin. But this is a different case from, say, *circlus, which is simply a syncopated form of circulus. *assimulo is said (by the TLFi and by us) to be a different verb from the Classical assimilo-assimulo, with a different etymology. I don't buy it, though. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 18:59, 16 December 2017 (UTC)
If we treat them as the same verb on the same page, how do we list the "bring together, assemble" sense, since it isn't attested? Can we write something like # {{lb|la|Vulgar Latin|unattested meaning}} [[bring]] [[together]], [[assemble]] at assimulo? —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 20:41, 16 December 2017 (UTC)
@Mahagaja: that'd be a solution, I guess. But do you agree with me that there's no real need to posit the existence of a new verb different from the classical one, and that it's just a matter of unattested sense indeed? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 12:42, 17 December 2017 (UTC)
I don't have a strong opinion on that, but probably so, yes. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 12:48, 17 December 2017 (UTC)
Is there any connection or interference from old germanic words like Old High German *samalōn, et al. which have the same meaning ?, and whose sense developments are more clearly traceable (stemming from a word meaning "together"). It's certainly not out of the realm of possibility (probability ?) when one considers the descendants (French, Occitan, Italian, ...) and the areas where the shift in meaning from "to make similar" > "to put together" occurred. What other Romance languages, if any, also show this particular sense development outside of the forementioned areas ? Leasnam (talk) 16:04, 19 December 2017 (UTC)
@Romanophile: As the creator of this page, what do you think? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:32, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Feel free to move any attested content to the mainspace. — (((Romanophile))) (contributions) 02:01, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
{{lb|la|Vulgar Latin|unattested meaning}}: unattested means it's not sufficient as for WT:CFI and would fail WT:RFVN. A third way could be a usage note, but a note like "In Vulgar Latin this word acquired the unattested meaning MEANING" would be somewhat strange. - 13:31, 7 January 2018 (UTC)


It is said that thelion and thelium come from θηλη. Would they rather come from θηλή? Fixed

Could this itself come from θῆλυς and thus from Reconstruction:Proto-Indo-European/dʰeh₁(y)-? Sobreira ►〓 (parlez) 14:24, 19 December 2017 (UTC)

I have no doubt at all that θηλή (thēlḗ) comes from *dʰeh₁(y)-, but whether it comes from θῆλυς (thêlus) or is merely cognate to it is much harder to determine. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 16:24, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

Proto-Slavic "to do"[edit]

Both *děti and *dělati are said two come from Proto-Balto-Slavic *dēˀtei in their etymology section (more precisely, *dělati is said to come from Proto-Balto-Slavic *dētei, which is a redirection to *dēˀtei).

*děti says *dělati is a derived term.

Which is right? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:40, 21 December 2017 (UTC)

Another thing: where do Russian деять (dejatʹ) and Old East Slavic дѣꙗти (dějati) fit in that? They're said to come from Proto-Slavic *děti, which doesn't mention them but gives Russian деть (detʹ) as a descendant instead. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:47, 21 December 2017 (UTC)
I don't have an answer to your first question other than that *dělati is indeed a derived form. Regarding your second, Slavic had a tendency to extend the infinitives of root verbs with -a-, so there's a fair few pairs of infinitives for one verb. In this case, the present stem was already *děj-, so this process worked from there. Thus, *děti and *dějati are two infinitives for the same present stem. —Rua (mew) 23:24, 21 December 2017 (UTC)

Latin frequentative verbs[edit]

I wonder which analysis of frequentative verbs makes the most sense:


Is one synchronic, the other diachronic? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 01:25, 23 December 2017 (UTC)


People who are more well-versed than me in Greek etymology should probably take a look at Talk:coral. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 02:22, 24 December 2017 (UTC)

Proto-Celtic *kattā "cat"[edit]

Proto-Celtic *kattā is currently a redlink, but mentioned (with no further etymology) at Proto-Brythonic *kaθ. Is the Proto-Celtic word derived from Latin cattus (as cattus says), or catta, or Proto-Germanic *kattuz? Old Irish catt says it is from Latin without mentioning an intermediate Proto-Celtic form. (As an aside, the quotation in catta, "owls and swallows and other birds fly upon their bodies, and upon their heads, and cats in like manner", makes me wonder if we are translating/glossing catta correctly...) - -sche (discuss) 19:24, 24 December 2017 (UTC)

If both the Brythonic and the Goidelic forms do go back to Proto-Celtic, then there have to have been both *kattos m and *kattā f, because the Goidelic forms go back to a masculine o-stem and the Brythonic forms to a feminine ā-stem. So either Proto-Celtic had both masculine and feminine forms, borrowed from Latin cattus and catta respectively, or else Proto-Brythonic borrowed catta directly from Latin and Proto-Goidelic (= Primitive Irish) borrowed cattus directly from Latin. There's probably no way to tell. As for the quote from Baruch 6 (aka the Letter of Jeremiah), it's a translation from the Greek ἐπὶ τὸ σῶμα αὐτῶν καὶ ἐπὶ τὴν κεφαλὴν αὐτῶν ἐφίπτανται νυκτερίδες, χελιδόνες καὶ τὰ ὄρνεα, ὡσαύτως δὲ καὶ οἱ αἴλουροι (epì tò sôma autôn kaì epì tḕn kephalḕn autôn ephíptantai nukterídes, khelidónes kaì tà órnea, hōsaútōs dè kaì hoi aílouroi). It's talking about idols of false gods, which bats (the Latin mistranslates νυκτερίς (nukterís, bat) as noctua (owl) because both literally mean "nocturnal one"), birds and cats all sit on. It probably isn't meant to imply that cats fly, even though there isn't any other verb around but ἐφίπταμαι (ephíptamai, fly upon). —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 09:50, 25 December 2017 (UTC)
I see, thank you. :) I've opened Wiktionary:Tea room/2017/December#catta about the translation of catta. - -sche (discuss) 22:44, 27 December 2017 (UTC)

đậu hoà lan[edit]

RFV of the etymology. It seems that this should be đậu+Hoà Lan instead, as Google search says "đậu Hòa Lan" and "Đậu Hòa Lan" are also used.--2001:DA8:201:3512:55FD:63A0:5A07:6206 11:33, 25 December 2017 (UTC)


Claims a possible Egyptian origin, citing the Online Etymology Dictionary. This doesn’t seem likely due to the lack of a plausible etymon, and I can’t find any evidence supporting it in modern Egyptological literature. The claim seems to go back to two possible sources:

  • There was a conjecture by E. A. Wallis Budge that the hapax legomenon ḫt-n-šnj (literally tree of hair), which refers to an unknown plant, was the origin of Arabic قُطْن (quṭn). But this is now known to be untenable, because Egyptian was consistently borrowed into Semitic as ḫ and not q; qṭn could be expected to go back to Egyptian qdn or gdn, but not ḫtn. (Other possibilities, like qtn or gtn, are generally forbidden by Egyptian phonological constraints.)
  • This 1896 paper seems to be what many of these claims trace back to; it claims Arabic قُطْن (quṭn) has either an Indian or Egyptian origin (on pages 633–634). It itself merely cites the claim to “Vgl. Aus ed. Geyer 23, 23; Lebid im TA. IX, 311.” Can anyone decipher what this reference refers to?

Overall, is an Egyptian origin of قُطْن (quṭn) just unfounded 19th-century speculation? — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 04:25, 26 December 2017 (UTC)

"Geyer" is w:de:Rudolf Geyer (Orientalist). DTLHS (talk) 04:34, 26 December 2017 (UTC)
Ah, thanks! Then ‘Aus ed. Geyer’ would seem to be Gedichte und Fragmente des A̕us ibn Hajar, and the passage in question mentions cotton but is not otherwise useful: ‘23. Ist ober ihrem Haupte, nachdem sie gefügig dahingeeilt ist, (etwas) gleich gehechelter Baumwolle, welche die Hechelweiber geschleudert haben.’ ‘Lebid im TA.’ is likely similar (an edition of the poems of Lebîd where the word is attested, probably). Then the conjectured origin likely originated in that 1896 paper, where it’s just asserted offhand in one sentence... not too promising. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 10:08, 26 December 2017 (UTC)
  • The Geiger quote in Vollers, Karl (1896), “Beiträge zur Kenntniss der lebenden arabischen Sprache in Aegypten”, in Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft[1] (in German), volume 50, page 633 is his edition of Ibn Ḥagar, for which the German translation is here, but the Arabic text I do not find in it neither there I can find any clue about the etymology in it.
I don’t know what the Arabic is – alas again the lack of an Arabic etymological dictionary –, but here the word is mentioned:
I would be surprised if the word came from Egyptian, because items of trade tend to have their names follow them, and Egypt was a destination rather than a source until fairly late. Perhaps a better line of inquiry would be terms for linen and flax, some of which are reasonably similar. Chuck Entz (talk) 14:50, 26 December 2017 (UTC)
How is the attestation of the Greek-script γοσσύπιον (gossúpion) in Ancient Literature? For the Diccionario Griego-Español gives as author where it is found only Plin. Nat. 19, 14 – a Latin author – and else I do not find it. Plinius ibd. writes about the plant or its name that it comes from the part of Egypt extending into Arabia.
As to the Coptic, I want to point out that Löw and and Fraenkel point to Parthey, Gustav (1844) Vocabularium coptico-latinum et latino-copticum e Peyroni et Tattami lexicis (in Latin), Berlin: Fr. Nicolai, page 563 where we read a κορσίπιον extracted from Hesychius of Alexandria. Palaestrator verborum sis loquier 🗣 15:33, 26 December 2017 (UTC)

Pokorny at flamen contradicts ब्रह्मन्[edit]

Lysdexia (talk) 17:15, 27 December 2017 (UTC)

Just about everything contradicts Pokorny. —Rua (mew) 17:29, 27 December 2017 (UTC)
Someone added the flamen theory in September, I've sanitized it. Crom daba (talk) 00:12, 30 December 2017 (UTC)


This etymology seems to be built on a mistranslation, the closest Tungusic word is Evenki пикача̄н (pikaçān) meaning treecreeper which is in Russian homonymous with pika (пищуха). Of course the mistake could be due to the naturalist who originally named the species, but it would be good if someone could find some deeper info on this. Crom daba (talk) 22:35, 29 December 2017 (UTC)

I wish English had a truly high-quality etymological dictionary to turn to. Everyone seems to be pointing at Tungusic, and the OED specifies Evenki, but I can't find any more information. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 23:09, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
How did the name get to English? There isn't much contact between English and Evenki speakers and the forms aren't an exact match, so there should be some intermediary. Chuck Entz (talk) 00:37, 30 December 2017 (UTC)
Google books has some hits in French for "pika" from the 1790s century, preceding English, in zoological literature.
Presumably the name was given by who ever did the fieldwork first, I thought Pallas, but he doesn't call them pika but ogotona.
Another mystery is A Dictionary of Arts and Sciences: I-Z by George Gregory, which under PICA has "See MUS.", yet under MUS (mouse) it doesn't mention pica as far as I can see. It also has some information about Ogotona under LEPUS, but still no mentions of pika/pica. Crom daba (talk) 02:50, 30 December 2017 (UTC)
Found it in Pallas' Zoographia rosso-asiatica under Lepus Alpinus. Crom daba (talk) 02:56, 30 December 2017 (UTC)
Another early work is Le règne animal by Georges Cuvier. DTLHS (talk) 03:00, 30 December 2017 (UTC)
Here is an early work that definitely points to Pallas as the source. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:10, 30 December 2017 (UTC)


A recent edit, "All of the etymologies were exactly the same just written slightly differently, so I combined them." Is this OK? DTLHS (talk) 04:51, 30 December 2017 (UTC)

The edit in question is diff.
Compared with the old version (if it were correct and complete) and dictionary.com (contains information from multiple dictionaries) it appears to be not OK.
  • The old version and dictionary.com (in the section "Word Origin and History for content" with the given source "Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper") state that the noun sense derives from Latin without any type of French between Latin and English. The new version states that all senses are derived from French.
  • dictionary.com states that some senses are derived from Middle French while others are derived from Old French. Because of the given time that could be plausible. With a single etymology as in the new version such a difference can't be given properly.
  • The old version and dictionary.com sometimes give Latin and sometimes Medieval Latin as origin. By the time, the origin for the French and English terms could always be Medieval Latin. But by the meanings of the Latin terms, some origins could be Classical Latin while others Medieval Latin.
- 14:41, 7 January 2018 (UTC)


Was the alternative form "on cros" a calque of the French en croix / Anglo-Norman an cros/croiz?

Furthermore, whilst some sources claim across to be a direct derivation from Anglo-Norman, some different sources seem to claim that the English term is a calque. Others besides those say that the (originally French) elements of the term over time assimilated with English a- and cross. We claim that the term is an English coinage, from a- and cross. Are we fairly sure that that is the case?

How can we say that across wasn't an alteration of a-croiz with croiz modified by Anglo-French an cros, with no particular English influence whatsoever? Or that it wasn't an alternate form of Middle English on cros, with the native English prefix a- (rather than using a French prefix)? Tharthan (talk) 05:19, 30 December 2017 (UTC)

大前年 three years ago[edit]

I cannot find any info. as to why 大 adds such connotation to 大前年. Any suggestions? --Backinstadiums (talk) 15:11, 30 December 2017 (UTC)

It doesn't seem that unreasonable that if 前年 is "two years ago" then a "big 前年" is "three years ago". There's something similar in Old Irish, where seisser means "a group of six people" and mórfeisser (literally a big group of six people) means "a group of seven people". —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 19:44, 30 December 2017 (UTC)


Hello, @Rua and me have a disagreement on the content of the inflection table of Proto-Indo-Eurpean *diwyós, and the discussion looked like it wasn't going anywhere. So I decided to resolve it asking for more opinions on the subject. I argue that the references reconstruct *diw-yó-, and this is well supported by the descendants. Yet she won't let me fix the inflection table, and reconstructs it as *dyu-yó-. As I told her in the discussion, we cannot give ourselves the luxury to reconstruct erroneous etymons without support on the daughter languages nor recognizable authors. Either the inflection table is removed, or fixed, but we cannot publish misleading information. --Tom 144 (talk) 16:33, 29 December 2017 (UTC)

I'm not reconstructing it any way at all. I've merely said that using ugly hacks to work around how the template is supposed to work is not a solution. You haven't been helpful in coming up with a real solution, like figuring out why the reconstructed inflection contradicts established PIE phonological rules. —Rua (mew) 16:38, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
*dyew- is a well known dissyllabic root. The hiatus is evident in the Rig-veda. If you don believe me just look at what Sihler has to say about it. Hiatus are not so rare in PIE, they also appear in the thematic optative suffix *-oih₁-, if instead we used the syllabification rules we would have to reconstruct *-oyh̥₁-, which is not attested anywhere. We know there was a first laryngeal there becuase the morpheme must have been *-i(é)h₁-, which is found in the athematic formations. The origin could be the deletion of an early consonant but it is just conjecture. It is not our problem to solve. --Tom 144 (talk) 16:52, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
There are no disyllabic roots in PIE. Roots are understood to consist of a single syllable, having the vowel -e- as its nucleus, and at least one consonant at either end. *dyew- is no different structurally from *ḱlew-. —Rua (mew) 16:56, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
*ǵenh₁- is another dissyllabic root. Root constraints only forbid having more that one full grade, but not more than one syllable. --Tom 144 (talk) 17:10, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
How is it dissyllabic? *h₁ is a consonant. --2A02:2788:A4:F44:E5DC:D203:5BE5:6B80 17:14, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
It can also be a vowel, see for example, *ǵénh̥₁tōr, *ǵénh̥₁trih₂, *ǵénh̥₁mn̥, *ǵénh̥₁tis. --Tom 144 (talk) 17:32, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
That's a post-PIE phenomenon. In PIE itself they were obstruents and didn't participate in syllabification. —Rua (mew) 17:42, 29 December 2017 (UTC)
They could be syllabic, if not, worlds like *ph̥₂tḗr would be monosyllabic, and such consonant clusters weren't allowed in PIE. The epenthesis of ə on syllabic laryngeals was a post-PIE development. --Tom 144 (talk) 16:41, 30 December 2017 (UTC)
Moved the discussion from the tea room by advice of @Chuck Entz. --Tom 144 (talk) 03:58, 31 December 2017 (UTC)
Indo-Iranian *pHtā́ argue against the laryngeal in *ph₂tḗr being syllabic in PIE (particularly Avestan). —*i̯óh₁nC[5] 05:18, 31 December 2017 (UTC)
I'm not sure what this tangent is accomplishing. Roots are not word forms by themselves, and hence don't even have syllabifications (regardless of how schwa epenthesis should be dated exactly).
So getting back on topic, what exactly is the supposed technical problem in giving the reconstruction as *diwyós? Please don't tell me we have some kind of an automated PIE inflection module or the like in place that we "have to" work with — you will get thirteen different reconstructions of PIE inflection if you asked twelve different IEists, and this absolutely should not be handled by something that ties us down to anything more sophisticated than consistent transcription. --Tropylium (talk) 00:19, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
@Tropylium: Yes we do. The code {{ine-decl-adj|diwyó}} gets automatically converted to *dyuyós in viewing mode. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 00:59, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
On a similar note, at *h₁ówHdʰr̥, the code of the inflection table {{ine-decl-noun-n|h₁ówHdʰr̥|h₁uHdʰén|ac=proterokinetic|n=sg}} gets converted to *h₁ówdʰr̥ in viewing mode (i.e. the laryngeal is automatically stripped in the o-grade). There too you have to fiddle with the template (h₁ówHHdʰr̥). --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 01:15, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
@Tropylium The issue is that the module gives the expected syllabification automatically, and *diwyós is an exception to syllabification rules, so I used HTML coding so the module wouldn't mess up the inflectional stem. But Rua disagrees with that solution, and prefers the stem given by the module, ignoring the fact that there is no support for that reconstruction outside syllabification rules. I've hidden the table for now so it wouldn't display misleading information.
Addressing the multiple reconstructions, I would support a little more variety on them. In the spanish wiktionary I've been working to include the compositional model, the Erlangen, and the Leiden school ( e.g. *ph̥₂tḗr). I think here we are based too much on Ringe in a quasi religious sense. Plus, progress in this field is done through discussion and analysis. Since this is certainly the widest, the most reliable and most accesible PIE dictionary, it is probably the first one that people interested on the subject are exposed to, and might influence the development of the field. Other views wouldn't make any harm, and would let readers have a more informed picture of the reconstructions. Here everything is presented with so much confidence, that readers might thing that there is scholar consensus on what has been published. I remember being surprised when I discovered that there were people who reconstructed the genitive singular as *-os. --Tom 144 (talk) 03:23, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
OK, so the solution is simple: delete whatever bullshit module is doing automatic syllabification contrary to what's actually reconstructible and/or reconstructed. We have no discussion about syllabification fine-tuning either at WT:AINE or its talk page. The page does mention the following crucial fact: A few roots seem to have other underlying vowels, usually a, but also occasionally i or u that never seem to alternate with their non-syllabic counterparts. So we acknowledge the fact that PIE syllabification cannot be done fully automatically for *i *u versus *y *w. This seems to be the issue here, too, even if in a different shape.
I would actually suggest not giving "full" PIE inflection at all. Most inflected forms do not have many enough attested descendants to be directly reconstructed, strictly speaking. We should only give key forms that have actual descendants, and leave theoretical dual ablatives etc. for an appendix on PIE inflection (or perhaps for Wikipedia entirely). --Tropylium (talk) 20:39, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
The module to edit would be Module:ine-common (see the "Desyllabify sonorants next to vowels" section), but I don't have the slightest idea how that works. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 00:21, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

pharaoh and related words in various languages[edit]

I was first going to handle this as an rfc, but there's at least one etymological unknown in this mess, so here we are:

The basic problem is that etymologies and descendants lists for entries are inconsistent in what they link to, and often wrong. For instance, Latin Pharaō is at the upper-case spelling, but many etymologies link to pharao. Likewise, the Ancient Greek entry is at Ancient Greek Φαραώ (Pharaṓ), but many entries link to φαραώ.

The strangest mismatch, though, is that most of the entries that link only to Φαραώ (Pharaṓ) and/or Hebrew פרעה and/or Egyptian pr ꜥꜣ have stems ending in some variant of "n", which doesn't seem to be explainable from any of those. I'm guessing that Latin made the indeclinable Ancient Greek Φαραώ (Pharaṓ) into a third-declension n-stem by analogy with similar Latin words, and that's the source- but that's just a guess. If true, that probably means that the Latin word will have to be included in the etymologies of all the n-stem languages, including Arabic, Persian, Armenian, and all the Slavic languages I'm aware of.

At any rate we need to straighten out these inconsistencies and fix all the links: in the case of English pharaoh, the etymology includes Middle English, Old English, Late Latin, Ancient Greek, Hebrew and Egyptian, but only the last two link to actual entries in any of those languages. Chuck Entz (talk) 06:11, 31 December 2017 (UTC)

@Palaestrator verborum, Vahagn Petrosyan, any explanation for the Syriac or Old Armenian? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 09:14, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge The Syriac ܦܪܥܘܢ (perʿōn) is already explained as from the Hebrew on its page, which is most likely considering that the Aramaeans had contact with the Hebrews earlier than with the Greeks and there is no factual reason that the Aramaeans loaned just when the Greeks came, and considering the ܥ (ʿ) and the ō in the word whereas the Greek has αώ. Early citations should be proferred, but it seems to that the outer shape of the words has strong suggestive power. The Ge'ez seems to be from the Syriac as well as it is ፈርዖን (farɘʿon). The question is for the Greek: If it has an /n/ at the end, it is perhaps borrowed from Syriac – Jeffery whom I have cited on فِرْعَوْن (firʿawn) speaks of Φαραών as a Christian form. Most unlikely it is from Ge'ez – though there were many Greeks in Aksum, the Greeks need to pass Egypt before they reach Ethiopia (it is interesting though if Category:Ancient Greek terms borrowed from Ge'ez can be populated). I ask whoever is competent in it to search for some old Ancient Greek quotes so we can see if Φαραών is a Christian form and how Φαραώ is related to it. Palaestrator verborum sis loquier 🗣 14:53, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge, Old Armenian փարաւոն (pʿarawon) is almost certainly from the Ancient Greek form Φαραών (Pharaṓn), which is attested for example in Josephus. --Vahag (talk) 21:17, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
Which brings us to the question of where Φαραών (Pharaṓn) came from. We really need an entry for this with an etymology. It seems late enough that it could be a Latin borrowing, I suppose. The Slavic etymologies at фараон, which started me looking at this, were added in diff by a contributor with a history of editing in areas they know nothing about. I suspect they should be pointing to Φαραών (Pharaṓn) instead, or to some Old Church Slavic term derived from it. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:36, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
M. Vasmer says that the Russian is derived from the Greek "Φαραώ(ν)" with ν in brackets. The immediate source is Old East Slavic фараонъ (faraonŭ). Old Church Slavonic was, according to the same source, фарао (farao). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 22:59, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
Old Church Slavonic only had фараонъ (faraonŭ) and фараосъ (faraosŭ) (plus variants of those with an omega); фарао (farao) first appeared in later Church Slavonic. See e.g. the SJS pp. 739–740 or the Старославянский словарь (по рукописям X-XI вв.) p. 757. I’m not sure why Vasmer cites фарао (farao) as appearing in the Codex Suprasliensis, but it doesn’t; only the forms фараѡ̑нѣ (faraȏně), фараѡ̑н҄ѧ (faraȏnʹę), and фараѡ̑соу (faraȏsu) occur there. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 17:15, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Another issue: etymonline says it's from Old English Pharon, the Middle English Dictionary entry for Pharaō doesn't mention Old English at all (though the earliest quote looks just like Old English and uses what seems to be a form of pharaon), and @Leasnam just added the Old English form pharao. I can't find any word for pharaoh at all in Bosworth-Toller, which is odd, considering the biblical focus of so many Old English texts. Perhaps it's because it's a proper noun- but I note that there's an entry for Petrus right next to where pharao would be. Maybe pharao is considered Latin? Chuck Entz (talk) 00:10, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
It could be considered a Latin word being used in Old English. There doesn't seem to be a headword for it, but it is certainly used [[5]] Leasnam (talk) 19:02, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
I expanded Φαραώ (Pharaṓ) a little. By the way, not all descendants ending in -on are necessarily from the rarer form Φαραών (Pharaṓn). They may have reshaped the awkward ending of Φαραώ (Pharaṓ) under the influence of other Greek names ending in -ών (-ṓn). --Vahag (talk) 16:53, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
As for Latin (and Greek) and the majuscule/minuscule: Both forms with majuscule and minuscule could exist and it could be a matter of spelling convention. For example, Phărăo is the lemma in L&S while pharao appears in the Nova Vulgata (online). It seems that Pharao is, or was, (sometimes) interpreted and in translations treated as a proper noun and not as a common noun, which could be a reason for the majuscule. - 13:59, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
At the mention of "Φαραώ(ν)" I felt reminded of gender inflection, probably because in modern German we have m. Pharao but f. Pharaonin, that has not much bearing on the issue, but I can't come up with another example for the seemingly irregular n before the regular feminine suffix ~in, except for the plural Pharaonen. So I suggest this is a retention of an older inflection from another language. Thought I'd mention it as the female version isn't honored on the wiktionaries as far as I can see. Maybe that should become my first edit. Also, compare this to Ἀμαζών, of uncertain etymology, a tribe with female warriors from Scythia. Scythian is not well attested but close enough by the assumed topography. Rhyminreason (talk) 23:39, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

what say you[edit]

I cannot find an appropritate (etymological) analysis of the fossilized what say you --Backinstadiums (talk) 10:22, 31 December 2017 (UTC)

@Backinstadiums: From what I read, the use of "do" as an auxiliary goes back to the fifteenth century. Before that, all verbs used to work without it. Compare "to be", which retains the original structure: "how are you?" (not "**how do you be?") --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 16:45, 31 December 2017 (UTC)
And that's the explanation put forth here and here. There's also how say you and what think you, apparently. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 16:51, 31 December 2017 (UTC)

Could someone explain what have you? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 16:48, 31 December 2017 (UTC)

what is used to mean whatever. The original meaning of the whole’s something like ‘whatever you might have’. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 11:03, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
@Vorziblix: Thanks! --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:08, 7 January 2018 (UTC)