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  1. Word Family - Heron

    Introduction

    I've been thinking about herons and egrets a lot recently. For the past year or so, our morning walk goes by a half mile of drainage ditch with an amazing variety of water birds. We regularly see 4 different species of heron: great blue heron, great egret, snowy egret …

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  2. Word Family - Gossamer

    Introduction

    Now often called "Indian summer", the period of unseasonably hot weather after an initial autumn cooling was previously called in English "goose summer" because it generally corresponds with the beginning of goose hunting season. Compare Irish fómhar beag na ngéanna: "warm period in Autumn (Indian summer)"

    Then the word …

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  3. Word Family - Camel

    June theme: Domestic Animals 🐕

    Teaser

    camel, gamma

    Full Text

    • Semitic *gamal- camel
      • Central Semitic
        • Arabic جمل jámal camel
          • Maltese ġemel camel
        • Northwest Semitic
          • Aramaic
            • Classical Syriac ܓܡܠܐ gamlā’ camel
          • Canaanite
            • Hebrew גמל gamal camel
            • Phoenician
              • Ancient Greek κάμηλος kámēlos camel
                • Greek καμήλα kamíla camel
                • Latin camēlus camel
                  • Old French
                    • English …
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  4. Word Family - Cow

    June theme: Domestic Animals 🐕

    Introduction

    Proto-Indo-European has *gʷṓws: "cow, cattle" and *woḱéh₂: "(female) cow". The expected feminine of the *gʷṓws would be something like **gʷow(s)éh₂. *woḱéh₂ looks similar, but not quite there.

    Sino-Tibetan *ŋwa: "cattle, ox" is also highly reminiscent of *gʷṓws. If there was a Central Asian …

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  5. Word Family - Swine

    June theme: Domestic Animals 🐕

    Introduction

    I present two families for "pig" here, partly because Armenian խոզ xoz is derivable from either family (see footnote [1])

    Family 1, Indo-European *suH- pig, sow?", possibly related to Akkadian 𒊺𒄷𒌑 še-hu-u₂ and Sumerian 𒋚 šah; and family 2, Proto-Indo-European *ǵʰóryos: "pig", probably central PIE …

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  6. Word Family - Canine

    June theme: Domestic Animals 🐕

    Introduction

    I get a little speculative here, if not downright provocative. There are words for dog all over Eurasia that recall each other. These could be onomatopoeic, but they do not much resemble the common forms you find in words that actually used as dog sound …

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  7. Word Family - Weasel

    Teaser

    virus, weasel, bison

    Full Text

    • Proto-Indo-European *weys- slime, poison, flow, melt
      • Proto-Indo-European *wisós action noun, zero-grade variant
        • Hellenic *wihós
          • Ancient Greek ῑ̓ός īós poison, venom
            • Greek ιός iós venom, virus
        • Indo-Iranian *wišás
          • Indo-Aryan *wíṣas
            • Dardic *biṣá
              • Kalasha biṣ poison
            • Sanskrit विष viṣá poison, venom, bane
              • Sauraseni 𑀯𑀺𑀲 visa …
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  8. Word Family - Venom

    November theme: Spiders 🕷️

    Teaser

    win, wish, Venus, venom, wonder, winsome

    Full Text

    • Proto-Indo-European *wenh₁- to love
      • Proto-Indo-European *wn̥h₁néw-ti? variant ne imperfective
        • Germanic *winnanã to strive, to work, to gain, to win
          • East Germanic
            • Gothic 𐍅𐌹𐌽𐌽𐌰𐌽 winnan to suffer
              • Gothic 𐍅𐌹𐌽𐌽𐌰 winna suffering, passion, the letter 𐍅
          • North Germanic
            • Old …
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  9. Word Family - Moa

    April Theme: Birds 🐦

    Teaser

    moa, manuk

    Full Text

    • Sino-Austronesian?
      • Proto-Austronesian *manuk bird
        • Malayo-Polynesian
          • Bajau memanuk bird
          • Javanese ꦩꦤꦸꦏ꧀ manuk bird
          • Malayic *manuk
            • Malay manuk bird, chicken
          • Phillipine
            • Tagalog manók chicken
          • Oceanic
            • Micronesian
              • Chuukese machang bird
              • Kiribati man bird
            • Polynesian *manu bird
              • Tongan manupuna bird
              • Nuclear Polynesian
                • Samoan manu bird …
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  10. Word Family - Bee

    March theme: Bees

    Teaser

    La bohème, bee, antisphexish

    Full Text

    • Proto-Indo-European *bʰewh₂- to hit, to strike
      • Proto-Indo-European *bʰewh₂ti primary verb
        • Proto-Albanian *bajā
          • Albanian bahe sling
        • Balto-Slavic
          • Lithuanian bausti to chastise, to punish
        • Celtic
          • Old Irish fo-botha threaten lit. "under-*beat"
        • Italic
          • Latin *fūtō
            • Latin confūtō
              • Western Romance
                • French
                  • English confute …
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  11. Word Family - Cavalry

    March theme: Horses

    Teaser

    capercaillie, chivalry, cavalier, cavalry

    Full Text

    • ??
      • Turkic
        • Old Turkish käväl horse? [1]
        • Persian ?
        • Proto-Slavic *kobyla mare (female horse)
          • Russian кобы́ла kobýla mare
          • Polish kobyła mare
      • Saka kabä
      • Ancient Greek καβάλλης kabállēs nag, pony
      • Proto-Celtic *capallos
        • Brythonic *kappilos horse
          • Welsh ceffyl horse
            • English Cavall [2]
            • English …
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  12. Word Family - Equus

    March theme: March of Horses 🐎

    Teaser

    hippopotamus, equestrian, zebra

    Full Text

    • Proto-Indo-European *h₁eḱ- swift, fast [1]
      • Proto-Indo-European *h₁oh₁ḱus a *o-∅-us reduplicative adjective form
        • Hellenic
          • Ancient Greek ὠκῠ́ς ōkús fast, swift
            • Ancient Greek ποδώκης podṓkēs swift-footed
            • Ancient Greek ὠκῠ́ροος ōkúroos swift-flowing
              • Ancient Greek Ὠκυρόη Ōkuróē Swift-Flowing (personal name …
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