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Learned borrowing from Old English esne, from Proto-Germanic *asnijaz (day labourer, hireling), from Proto-Germanic *asniz, *asunz (reward), from Proto-Indo-European *os(e)n-, *es(e)n- (summer, harvest, harvest-time). Related to Old English earnian (to labor for, strive after, deserve as the reward of labor, merit, earn, win). More at earn.


esne (plural esnes)

  1. (Anglo-Saxon, historical) A hireling of servile status; slave.
    • 1818, Samuel Heywood, A dissertation upon the distinctions in society:
      To an esne, therefore, I refer the entry in Doomsday-book, that at Chester, if a male or female slave shall do any []
    • 1875, William Stubbs, The constitutional history of England, in its origin and development:
      [] of British extraction captured or purchased, — or of the common German stock descended from the slaves of the first colonists: the esne or slave who works for hire; []
    • 2011, David Anthony Edgell Pelteret, Slavery in Early Mediaeval England:
      [] insist that in the event of the death of an esne his full value had to be paid.




From Proto-Basque *ezene.


  • IPA(key): /es̺ne/, [e̞z̺.ne̞]


esne inan

  1. milk


Declension of esne (inanimate, ending in vowel)
indefinite singular plural
absolutive esne esnea esneak
ergative esnek esneak esneek
dative esneri esneari esneei
genitive esneren esnearen esneen
comitative esnerekin esnearekin esneekin
causative esnerengatik esnearengatik esneengatik
benefactive esnerentzat esnearentzat esneentzat
instrumental esnez esneaz esneez
inessive esnetan esnean esneetan
locative esnetako esneko esneetako
allative esnetara esnera esneetara
terminative esnetaraino esneraino esneetaraino
directive esnetarantz esnerantz esneetarantz
destinative esnetarako esnerako esneetarako
ablative esnetatik esnetik esneetatik
partitive esnerik
prolative esnetzat

Further reading[edit]

  • esne” in Euskaltzaindiaren Hiztegia,
  • esne” in Orotariko Euskal Hiztegia,