Questions tagged [etymologia]

For questions about etymology: the history of words in Latin or the change in meaning as the words are loaned into another language.

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2
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1answer
67 views

Is “tribuo” derrived from “tribus” or vice versa?

According to Wiktionary, the verb tribuo comes from tribus. But further search led me to this etymological dictionary, which in turn cites Forcelleni on those two entries; On tribuo Forcelleni writes ...
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1answer
162 views

How did the fourth declension neuter dative singular become different from the non-neuter ending?

Usually, when a neuter case ending is different from the non-neuter ending in the same declension, the difference is in the nominative or accusative case (e.g. -us and -um in the second declension ...
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1answer
2k views

Is there a relationship between the word amor (love) & mors (death)?

I recently read in a book that there is an etymological relationship between the Latin words amor & mort but no citation is given. Looking at an online etymological dictionary (Wiktionary) did not ...
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1answer
62 views

Where does the -τ- come from in the oblique stem of some Greek neuter nouns with nom/acc sing forms in -ς?

I just learned that some Greek neuter nouns of the third declension with a nominative/accusative singular form ending in -ς have oblique stems in -τ-, which surprised me. I expected τ-stem neuter ...
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1answer
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How does the subjunctive "under' + 'join'?

[Etymonline:] ... from sub "under" (see sub-) + iungere "to join" (see jugular). ... [OED:] ... The subjunctive mood was so called because it was regarded as specially appropriate to ‘subjoined’ ...
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1answer
40 views

What exactly does the prefix 'in-' signify, in 'impartire'?

It seems that the Latin verb impartire (more commonly impertire) means "to share with another, to communicate, bestow, impart". The English verb impart comes from this. What does the prefix in- mean ...
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3answers
112 views

An introduction to Latin etymology?

I've never studied etymology, but I find myself interested in how words came into Latin and how Latin gave rise to words in other languages. There are many sources for finding the etymology of a given ...
5
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1answer
104 views

Does Latin allow the letter K in suffixed words?

Does Latin allow the letter 'k' in suffixed words? Actually, I'm explaining a phenomenon in which English spelling changes... Consider the following examples: Likeable, shakeable, makeable - these ...
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1answer
76 views

Is there an etymological connection between “comitia” and “comes”?

In the Roman Republic, the word comitia was used for the various popular assemblies (e.g. comitia centuriata). I can't find any clear indication online as to its etymological roots. I was wondering ...
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72 views

Do epi- and para- befit the meanings of epitope and paratope? [closed]

Doubtless epi- and para-tope' share the same root, and differ merely in prefixes. Does the difference in prefix explain their meanings? Lexico defines epitope: The part of an antigen molecule to ...
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1answer
100 views

What creative pursuits can I follow using the Latin Language?

While we're stuck in quarantine I have plenty of time to create. Here's what I've tried doing so far: Helping answer easy questions on the Stack Exchange Translating songs into Latin/Writing songs in ...
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Valerius and Valentinus have the same root?

Valerius is derived from "Volesus" or "Volusus", which in turn is derived from "valere", to be strong. Valentinus is derived from "valens" meaning "healthy, strong" So "valere" comes from "valens"?
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Crocodile vs. cocodrile: where does the “r” belong?

We are all familiar with crocodiles. We know, love, and recognize them in many European languages: German: Krokodil French: crocodile Portuguese: crocodilo Russian: крокодил But perhaps it comes as ...
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Where does au-fugiō come from?

Hittite has a verbal prefix u- that indicates motion away from something. Kloekhorst connects it to Latin au-fugiō, "to flee from", saying they both come from PIE *h₂-u-. However, I'd always thought ...
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Etymology of the name Laurentius

Laurentius is a Latin name that means "From Laurentum" (a city near Rome). It is possible that the place name Laurentum is derived from the Latin laurus ("laurel"). The Greek form Λαυρέντιος (...
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Word parsing in Latin declensions

I'm trying to parse a few sets of Latin words divided into the categories: perfect participle, present participle and gerundives. I'm struggling a bit. Particularly with gerundives. For instance, in ...
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1783 Document - Dominum, Domino and Domina

I have a family document from 1783 in which an unmarried son is referred to as Dominum Conradinum (last letters of surname)...um, and the father is referred to as Domino Jacobo (last letter of surname)...
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Gender and etymology of name “Herena”

I found that Herena is the name of a Christian saint from the 3rd century. Virtually nothing is known about Herena's life, but my question is about the name: Is it a feminine name or masculine, or ...
5
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1answer
129 views

Could lacio and ἕλκω be related?

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 ...
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1answer
114 views

Translation of ab and de in Greek,

How would one best translate ab and de from Latin to Greek in order to capture the different nuances? In Greek both are usually translated as από. I am trying to capture the nuances so I am using ...
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2answers
120 views

How did 'apo-' shift from signifying 'off, away' to 'because of'?

What notions underlie 'off, away' and 'because of'? ἀπό - Wiktionary Etymology From Proto-Indo-European *h₂epó (“off, away”). Preposition ᾰ̓πό • (apó) (governs the genitive) ...
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3answers
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How did 'folding' semantically shift to mean 'reply'?

I seek more details and other opinions than Cerberus's answer that cited Lewis & Short on what notions underlie folding and replying. As to why folding (back) came to mean uttering (back), I ...
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116 views

Which name came first, Lucius or Λουκᾶς?

The etymology of the name Luke is commonly said to be the Latin name Lucas, itself from Lucius, from the praenomen Lucius, from the root Lux (gen. Lucis). [A separate etymology says Λουκᾶς/Λουκανός, ...
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What is the etymology of “chorāgus”?

Lewis and Short indicates that "chorāgus" is from Greek χορηγός (Doric χορᾱγός), which LSJ says is a compound of χορός and ἡγέομαι. The entries for choragus in the Oxford English Dictionary and a ...
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What is the etymology of Laches? (The Ancient Greek name.)

I'm studying Plato, but am ungreeked. Does the Ancient Greek name Laches have a known or suspected etymology? My searches have only turned up the modern legal term, related to the Latin word laxo. ...
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1answer
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Did “sanctifico” ever mean “to make the sign of the cross”?

The Spanish word "santiguar" means "to make the sign of the cross". So for instance, when a Catholic enters a church, s/he "se santigua" (s/he makes the sign of the cross on her/himself). According ...
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2answers
121 views

Is “mobile (vulgus)” used to refer to a “mob”?

According to Wiktionary, the English term "mob" (as in group of people) comes from the Middle English "mobile", which comes from the Latin "mobile (vulgus)" (a moving crowd). Is this meaning attested ...
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1answer
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On the origin of the name “culture” ( possible confusion between “cultura” and “cultus”)

The context of my question is a philosophical reflection on the concept of culture in the anthropological sense. The anthrological concept of "culture" dates from Tylor: culture is “that complex ...
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Why does “urgueo” exist as a variant of “urgeo”?

The rule I learned for the pronunciation of the digram "gu" before a vowel in Latin was /gw/ after "n", vs. g + vocalic u anywhere else. But I just discovered the exception urgueo /urgweoː/. This is a ...
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What did “quid pro quo” originally mean?

The phrase quid pro quo means "what for what" in Latin, but that makes very little sense to me. Wikipedia hints at the original meaning having to do with substitutions. That makes sense, as pro can ...
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Is there a tool/website to see which non-Latin words are derived from a given Latin word?

One way I use to learn Latin vocabulary is to seek for derived Spanish/English words which meaning I know. For instance, gressus derived into egresar and ingresar, Spanish words which mean to exit ("e[...
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1answer
115 views

Why was 'haemophilia' created to mean 'A constitutional (usually hereditary) tendency to bleeding'? [closed]

Is this auto-antonymy? I'm guessing so, as humans who love blood undeniably wouldn't want to lose it! If not, which type of semantic shift according to Blank's 1999 typology? OED and haemophilia - ...
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2answers
121 views

Is “ex-” (old, past) seen in Latin

I just really don't know where English ex-, as in "ex-friend" exactly came from. So far I havent seen such meaning in Latin (or Greek), but I know little. It would bolster the following idea,...
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169 views

Difference between dexter/sinister and rectus/laevus?

Is there a difference between the pair dexter/sinister (right/left) and rectus/laevus? I was only aware of the pair dexter/sinister until recently, when I learned that chiral molecules in molecular ...
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2answers
253 views

Origin of “Interficere”?

I don't understand the etymology of interfacio: inter + facio. How it became "to kill"? What is the link between "to do between"?
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2answers
135 views

How could Dalmatian “anca” derive from Latin “hanc hodie”?

The semantic derivation from hanc hodie "this here day" to "also", "even" etc. does make no sense to me. The editor who added the etymology to wiki/anca and a many other languages, that share this ...
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47 views

Etymology of the adjective ‘idoneus’

All etymological dictionaries includung Wiktionary and De Vaan’s Etymological Dictionary state the ultimate origin of the Latin adjective idoneus (‘suitable’; ‘sufficient’) is unknown. I was ...
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1answer
235 views

Origins of the adjective ‘inanis’

According to Wiktionary and De Vaan’s Etymological Dictionary, the etymology of the Latin adjective inanis (‘empty’; ‘worthless’) is unknown. I was wondering if anybody had a theory on the origin of ...
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1answer
72 views

How did 'licentiare' semantically shift to mean employment dismissal?

I was researching the etymology for the French licencier, and Wiktionary refers to Latin licentiare. I can't see it exhibited in Oxford Latin Dictionary (2012 2 ed) but Latdict does. Please see the ...
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What evidence is there of a short vowel in the first syllable of “vallum”?

Two sources that I've come across indicate a long vowel /aː/ in the first syllable of the word vallum 'palisade wall' (that is, vāllum). This form is given in The Latin Language, by Charles E. ...
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1answer
156 views

Origin of “haru-” in “haruspex”

I am trying to understand better the etymon of the first part of the word haruspex. The Wiktionary entry and other sources mention «haru- (“intestines”)», but there seems to be no Latin word *haru or ...
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0answers
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How did “doctor” come to mean “physician” in English?

Doctor in Latin means "teacher", with (I think) connotations of being learnèd or highly educated, as in Philosophiæ Doctor. How did it acquire its modern English meaning of a licensed physician? Owen ...
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1answer
232 views

How did 'folding' semantically shift to mean 'repeat'?

Etymonline proclaims that replicare "to repeat, reply," literally "to fold back," originates from re- "back, again" (see re-) + plicare "to fold" (from PIE root *plek- "to plait") What ...
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What is the etymology of Ἁμαδρυάς (Hamadryas)? Is the second alpha actually long?

I am trying to find more information about the formation and pronunciation of the Greek noun Ἁμαδρυάς, taken into Latin as Hamadryas. L&S transcribes the second a of the Latin form with a macron: ...
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1answer
55 views

Explanatory and Etymological dictionary of the Latin Language

With the term explanatory I am translating ερμηνευτικό. A dictionary which defines words comprehensively and clearly. If one considers Oxford University to be the authority on the English language ...
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“Renegatus”: an active perfect participle from a non-deponent verb?

Several dictionaries' etymologies of English "renegade" trace it to Medieval Latin renegatus, an apostate, one who has denied his religion and gone back to another. Renegatus in turn is the ...
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53 views

What is the nature of variation between αι and α in (Pre-)Greek words?

When trying to answer a previous question about the patronymic derived from Asclepius, I came across the following quotation from Beekes in the Wikipedia entry on Asclepius: The name is typical for ...
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1answer
102 views

When a Greek word is borrowed by Latin, does it keep the same gender?

When a Greek word is borrowed by Latin, does it keep the same gender that it had in Greek? For example, a question arose about the word platysma, a muscle in the neck. It undoubtedly comes from ...
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2answers
156 views

Did the Romans ever use 'decimatio' in a generalized sense?

Decimātiō was a Roman term for a military punishment where a group was reduced by a tenth. But in modern English, decimation is used generically to mean 'greatly reduced or damaged', often in ...
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2answers
166 views

What is the correct etymology of ignōscō “pardon”?

The verb ignōscō, with the meaning "pardon, forgive", is explained in some sources as coming from the negative prefix in- and (g)nōscō. For example, Lewis and Short says "lit., not to wish to know, ...

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