Flour

In this post we’re looking into words for flour and related things in Celtic languages.

Skiing slope of flour

Proto-Celtic *mlātos = flour
Gaulish *blatos = flour
Proto-Brythonic *blọd = flour
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) blawd, blaỼt = flour
Welsh (Cymraeg) blawd = flour, meal, powder
blawdaidd = mealy, floury, friable
blodiaf, blawdiaf, blawdio = to grind into meal, produce flour, become powdery, turn to dust, sprinkle (with) flour
blodiwr, blawdiwr = flour or meal merchant
Old Cornish blot = flour, meal
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) blot, blês = flour, meal
Cornish (Kernewek) bleus = flour
bleus hesken = sawdust
bleus leun = wholemeal
bleusa = to flour
Old Breton blot = flour
Breton (Brezhoneg) bleud = flour, powder
bleudañ = to flour
bleudek = floury
bleud brazed = wholemeal flour
bleud goellet = self-raising flour
bleud gwinizh = wheat flour

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European *ml̥h₂-tó-s, from *melh₂- (to crush, grind) [source]. Words from the same root include melancholy and melanin in English, and μελανός (melanós – black, dark, blue, bruised) in Greek [source].

Old Irish (Góidelc) men = flour
Irish (Gaeilge) min [ˈmʲɪnʲ/ˈmʲɨ̞nʲ] = meal; powedered matter
min choirce = oatmeal
min chruithneachta = wheatmeal
min sáibh = sawdust
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) min [min] = flour, meal, grounds, filings
min-fhlùir = flour
min-eòrna = barley flour/meal
min-sheagail = rye flour
min-chruithneachd = wheat flour
muileann-mine = flour mill
Manx (Gaelg) meinn = meal
meinn chorkey = oatmeal
meinn churnaght = wheatmeal flour
meinn hoggyl = rye meal
meinn oarn = barley meal
meinn saaue = sawdust

Etymology: unknown

Middle Welsh (Kymraec) peyllyeyt, peillit = flour
Welsh (Cymraeg) paill = pollen, flour
peill(i)aid = flour, fine flour, wheat flour, white flour, powder
peilliaid gwenith = (fine) wheat flour
peilliaid haidd = barley flour
peilliaid rhyg = rye flour

Etymology: from the Latin pollen (fine flower, powder, dust), from the Proto-Indo-European *pel- (flour, dust) [source].

Words from the same roots, via the Latin pulvis (dust, powder, ashes), include polve (dust, ashes) in Italian, polvo (dust, powder) in Spanish, poussière (dust) in French, and pulverise (to render into dust or powder) in English [source].

Irish (Gaeilge) plúr [pˠlˠuːɾˠ] = flour, flower
plúr geal = white flour
plúr cruithneachta = wheaten flour
plúrach = floury, farinaceous; flower-like, pretty
plúraigh = to effloresce
plúróg = pretty girl
plúrscoth = choicest flower, pick, choice
plúrú = efflorescence
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) flùr [fl̪ˠuːr] = flour
flùr lom = plain flour
flùr-éirigh = self-raising flour
Manx (Gaelg) flooyr = flour
flooyr churnaght = wheaten flour
grine-flooyr = cornflour
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) fflwr = flour
Welsh (Cymraeg) fflŵr [fluːr], fflowr = flour (in South Wales)
fflŵr can = wheat flour

Etymology: from the Anglo-Norman flur (flower), from the Old French flor (flower), from the Latin flōrem (flower), from flōs (flower, blossom), from Proto-Italic *flōs (flower, blossom), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰleh₃- (flower, blossom) [source].

The English words flour, flower, flora, blossom and bloom come from the same roots, as does the French word fleur (flower) [source].

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Sources: Wiktionary, Am Faclair Beag, Online Manx Dictionary, Teanglann.ie, eDIL – Electronic Dictionary of the Irish Language, In Dúil Bélrai English – Old Irish glossary, Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru, Gerlyver Kernewek, Gerlyvyr Cernewec, Dictionaire Favereau, TermOfis, Le dictionnaire diachronique du breton, Geriafurch, English – ProtoCeltic WordList (PDF), Etymological Dictionary Of Proto Celtic

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