17 votes
Accepted

Are "μπ" and "ντ" indicators that the word didn't exist in Koine/Ancient Greek?

Koiné Greek & earlier lacked initial <μπ>, <ντ>, or <γκ> although these strings are commonplace word-internally. There are however a small number of Modern Greek words beginning &...
Tristan's user avatar
  • 551
16 votes

Are "μπ" and "ντ" indicators that the word didn't exist in Koine/Ancient Greek?

No, there are plenty of ancient Greek words that have μπ and ντ in there somewhere. Two common words off the top of my head are ἀντί and πέμπω, thoroughly attested throughout ancient Greek. If you ...
cmw's user avatar
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16 votes
Accepted

Present participles of the verb esse

Good question! In the beginning, way back in the far-flung times of Proto-Indo-European, the word for "it is" was something like *h₁ésti, and it had a fairly regular present participle, *h₁sónts. In ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 67k
11 votes

Are "μπ" and "ντ" indicators that the word didn't exist in Koine/Ancient Greek?

CMW is completely correct, but to add on a bit: The reason ΜΠ and ΝΤ are used for /b/ and /d/ nowadays is because, historically, the voiced stops Β Δ Γ turned into fricatives, and then later the ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 67k
8 votes

What are the conventions for transcribing Semitic languages into Greek?

In the oldest stratum of loan words Semitic t and k are generally represented by τ and κ, while the emphatic stops ṭ and q are represented by θ and χ. Witness the names of the letters tau and theta. ...
fdb's user avatar
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8 votes

Does any Greek word have a geminate consonant after a long vowel?

There are quite a few, actually. Just to add some more examples: ἥττων "less" πράττω "do" (impv. πρᾶττε shows the length) πλήττω "strike" μᾶλλον "more" ἤλλαγμαι, pf. m./p. of ἀλλάττω "exchange" ...
TKR's user avatar
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8 votes
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Does any Greek word have a geminate consonant after a long vowel?

There is the word γλῶσσα and a great number of other words derived from it. Here is a list of words containing -ωσσ-, giving more examples.
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
8 votes

What can we say about the pronunciation of Z?

Two reasons for thinking that Z was pronounced in Latin as a fricative: The spelling SS was once used to represent it, as you mention in your prior question When did the Romans start using Z? The ...
Asteroides's user avatar
8 votes

βυκάνη < būcina: vowel reduction undone in borrowings from Latin?

I looked up the Greek word in the etymological dictionaries of Chantraine and Beekes. They both say that your hypothesis #1 (an Oscan loan) was indeed proposed by Cuny in 1908, but that this was ...
TKR's user avatar
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8 votes

Are "μπ" and "ντ" indicators that the word didn't exist in Koine/Ancient Greek?

A small correction to a near mis-statement in the question. (I'm a native MG speaker.) μπ and ντ are not always pronounced as [b] and [d]! In fact, the "traditional" pronunciation is [mb] ...
Cosmas Zachos's user avatar
6 votes

Present participles of the verb esse

In medieval Latin there were neologisms such as ens. The link also says that the original form was sons with the classical meaning "guilty".
Vladimir F Героям слава's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Are there well-assimilated Latin words from Semitic languages?

I take it you're not interested in later words like sultanus, algebra, alcohol or nadir. Then I hope that this article from 1892 isn't too outdated: 'On Semitic Words in Greek and Latin' by W. Muss-...
Jasper May's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

Why choose σ versus σσ in Hebrew loans?

Note: this answer is pure speculation (or original research, if you're feeling generous), not backed up by any scholarly references. Neither Varro nor I marked vowel length in our Hebrew and Aramaic ...
Draconis's user avatar
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5 votes

From which Greek dialect did Hebrew borrow *awēr* "air"?

The Greek ἀήρ seems to have entered (post-Biblical) Hebrew via Aramaic ʼwwyr. Syriac Aramaic also has the more Greek-looking form ʼʼr. The replacement of an intervocalic glottal stop by a semi-vowel (...
fdb's user avatar
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5 votes

Is Hyksos unique, or is there a rule about when κ + σ doesn't equal ξ?

Apparently, the name is found in Eusebius as "Ὑκουσσώς", and it has been argued that Ὑκσώς in Manetho is just a textual corruption of that. The History of Nations, Volume 1: Ancient Empires ...
Asteroides's user avatar
4 votes

Are there well-assimilated Latin words from Semitic languages?

Some more probable direct Phoenician/Punic loanwords: sūfes 'suffete' (a Carthaginian magistrate) from 𐤔𐤐𐤈‎ špṭ 'judge'. Compare Hebrew שׁוֹפֵט‎ šōp̄ēṭ 'judge' (as in the Book of Judges), also a ...
Cairnarvon's user avatar
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4 votes

Etymology of Acolyte

Adapatation of Greek ου as y is certainly not expected. I would guess that there may have been some analogical influence from other words ending in -ytus, perhaps proselytus from προσήλυτος. It's also ...
Asteroides's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Etymology of Acolyte

From Etymonline: early 14c., "inferior officer in the church," from Old French acolite or directly from Medieval Latin acolytus (Late Latin acoluthus), from Greek akolouthos "following,...
cmw's user avatar
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4 votes

Do barbarians have nomina?

The Italian Wikipedia page on Roman onomastics states, without references though, Former auxiliary soldiers and other categories of people that earned the Roman citizenship, could and often would ...
Vincenzo Oliva's user avatar
4 votes

Do barbarians have nomina?

I think you answered this question yourself with the humble word "also" in the second sentence. "Nomen" has two meanings in Latin, "name" and a particular part of a Roman tripartite name. Even ...
fdb's user avatar
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3 votes
Accepted

What are the conventions for transcribing Semitic languages into Latin?

The vast majority of Semitic words transcribed in Latin come directly from Punic; Krahmalkov provides a summary of the conventions in his Phoenician-Punic Grammar. g, d, l, m, n, r were transcribed ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 67k
3 votes

Why choose σ versus σσ in Hebrew loans?

I think that TKR's remark on the occasional spellings with υ may also be relevant to the matter. Note that in Ἰησοῦς with the single σ, the the ש is in the vicinity of a rounded vowel. Also ...
varro's user avatar
  • 4,688
3 votes

Are there well-assimilated Latin words from Semitic languages?

To add other possibilities according to Wiktionary (filtering those words that convincingly pass through Ancient Greek): ferrum: [possible Phoenician and maybe through Etruscan] genius: [from Proto-...
d_e's user avatar
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2 votes

Are there well-assimilated Latin words from Semitic languages?

I just recently stumbled across two examples in Lewis and Short of semitic words, for which L&S cites no Greek intermediary. Of course, the lack of citation itself is not exactly proof that Greek ...
Figulus's user avatar
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