5

Would it be at all possible for Latin lacio "pull, lure" (cf. illicio, laqueus, lacesso, lacto) to be related with Greek ἕλκω "draw, pull"? Wiktionary suggests no cognates of lacio are known, so there probably is no established relation, but I am curious whether this would be at al possible.

1
  • Of course a corresponding theory would be possible, only depending on how complicated you want it to be. If "related" should mean not crazy, but a tidy derivation with unbroken descent, Given Lacio as a byname of Rome, I don't think so. But who said etymology should be light?
    – vectory
    Feb 18 '20 at 21:51
7

ἕλκω is thought to be from a root *selk-, which actually has a Latin derivative in sulcus "furrow" (Gk. ὅλκος). As far as I can see there's no regular way to derive laciō from *selk-. (BTW de Vaan argues that laqueus is unrelated to the family of laciō because of the qu.)

7
  • work out zero grade, aorist of *selk-, assume s-mobile, *selk- > *sl-k > *lek- + *-yo (present?) baam, lacio. I'm sure there's a problem. what's the problem, doc?
    – vectory
    Feb 23 '20 at 23:10
  • @vectory This is why I said "no regular way" -- for that derivation to work, you need both Schwebeablaut and a hard-to-motivate vowel change to a.
    – TKR
    Feb 24 '20 at 2:06
  • a) *(s)leh₂g- "to be slack; be limp; droop; sag" (cf. Old Saxon lakan) b) *slak- "to beat, hit, throw, strike" (cf. slay, Ger schlagen). Several semantic links are hypotheticly possible. cp slackline, Schlagschnur.
    – vectory
    Feb 24 '20 at 7:38
  • 1
    @vectory If you ignore regularity and allow for indefinite semantic leeway the connections game becomes much easier to play, but also much less interesting, because without stricter criteria you can't get beyond lists of unproveable and mutually incompatible pseudo-cognates like the ones you are always posting here.
    – TKR
    Feb 24 '20 at 18:08
  • 1
    @vectory The simplex lacio does seem to be a hapax, but its compounds (illicio etc.) are not. I don't see that it makes a difference to the question, though.
    – TKR
    Feb 27 '20 at 6:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.