Up Above

Today we’re looking at up, over, above and related words in Celtic languages.

The Crowded Summit of Snowdon
A quiet day on the summit of Snowden / Dydd tawel ar gopa’r Wyddfa

Proto-Celtic *ouxsos = above
*ouxselos = high, elevated
Gaulish *uxelos = high, elevated
Old Irish (Goídelc) úas [uːa̯s] = above, over
anúas [aˈn͈uːa̯s] = from above
súas = up, upwards, back (in time), forward on (in time),
túas = up, above, of heaven, above (mentioned)
úasal = high, lofty, noble, high-born, gallant, genteel, honourable
Irish (Gaeilge) suas [ˈɡaɾʲəmʲ/ˈɡɪɾʲəmʲ] = up, to higher place or station, at, towards, a high level, to the south, onwards, backwards, on high, risen
anuas = down (from above)
thuas = up, in higher place, in the south, put up, on top, successful, profiting
uasal [ˈuəsˠəlˠ] = noble, high-born, aristocratic, gentle, gallant, genteel, lofty, precious, fine, hallowed, enchanted, inhabited by fairies
na huaisle the good people, the fairies
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) suas [suəs] = up, upwards, upright, standing
shuas [huəs] = above, aloft up (location), upper
a-nuas [əˈn̪ˠuəs] = down(wards) / up(wards) – towards the speaker
uasal [uəsəl̪ˠ] = noble, nobleman, nobility, high-minded, genteel
Manx (Gaelg) seose = heavenwards, up, upward, upwards
heose = above, aloft, up, upper
neose = down, downward, downwards
ooasle = aristocratic, classy, creditable, dignified, esteemed, gentlemanly, goodly, highborn, honourable, illustrious, lofty, lordly, magnificent, noble, respected
Brythonic *ʉx [ˈʉːx] = above, on top of, over
*ʉxel [ʉˈxɛːlˑ] = high, elevated
Old Welsh uuc = above, on top of, over
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) uch = above, on top of, over
uchel = shigh, tall, exalted
Welsh (Cymraeg) uwch [ɨ̞u̯χ/ɪu̯χ] = above, on top of, over, on, beyond, in front of
uchel [ˈɨ̞χɛl/ˈiːχɛl] = high, tall, exalted, important, solemn, sublime, splendid, excellent, noble, stately, respectable, commendable
uchelder = high place, height, highness, nobility
uchelaf, uchelu = to raise, heighten, exalt, increase
uchelwr = landed, proprietor, freeholder, landlord, gentleman, nobelman, aristocrat, a superior
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) uhel = high, lofty, elevated
uhelder = height, highness
uhelle = to raise up on high, to exalt
Cornish (Kernewek) a-ugh = above
a-ugh dhe = over
ughel = high, grand, loud, tall
ughelder = height, loudness
Old Breton uh = on high
uchel = high
Middle Breton (Brezonec) uc’h = on high
uhel = high, noble, generous
uhelaat = to increase, rise in the sky, raise
uheladur = to shrug, enhancement
uhelañ = the highest point
Breton (Brezhoneg) uhel [ˈy.ɛl] = high, uphill, upstream
uhelaat = to promote
uc’hek = maximal

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European *h₃ewpso- (above) from *h₃ewps- (high, elevated) [source].

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, Dictionaire Favereau, TermOfis, English – ProtoCeltic WordList (PDF), Etymological Dictionary Of Proto Celtic

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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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Foundations

Words for foundation and related words in Celtic languages.

Foundations

Proto-Celtic *bonus = foundation, base, butt
Gaulish *bona = foundation, base
Old Irish (Goídelc) bun [bun] = base, bottom, butt, end
Irish (Gaeilge) bun [bˠʊnˠ/bˠʌnˠ] = base, bottom; stock, stump; lower end; extremity; basis origin; basic provision; settled state; source, direction; trace
bunábhar = raw material; substance, main outlines
bunachar = base, foundation
bunadh = origin; stock, kind; native inhabitants; fundamental, basic
bunaigh = to found, establish
bunoscionn = upside down
bunú = foundation, establishment
bunús = origin, basis, foundation, settlement, substance, essence
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) bun [bun] = base, basis, bottom, foot; derivation, origin, source; butt, stub, stump; mouth (of a river)
bunach = squat/sturdy person, stumps, stubble
bunachar = base, foundation, root
bunasach = original, basic, fundamental
bunachas = base, foundation, root
buntach = stocky, stout, truncated, broken off
Manx (Gaelg) bun = author, basis, details, origin, original, prime, principle, raw material, stem, stool
bunneydagh = authoritative, basic, elemental, firsthand, fundamental, fundamentalist, original, primitive
bunneydys = basis, foundation, groundwork, origin, root
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) bon = bottom, base
Welsh (Cymraeg) bôn [boːn] = base, bottom, tree trunk, stump, stem, root
bondew = thick-based, fat-bottomed, broad-hipped, short and fat, fat-legged
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) ben = stem, base, trunk, butt, end
Cornish (Kernewek) ben = trunk, base, foot
Breton (Brezhoneg) ben = mouth of a river

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European **bʰuH- (to be, become) [source]. English words from the same PIE root include to be, moribund and possibly bunny [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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Hammers

Words for hammer and related things in Celtic languages:

Hammer

Proto-Celtic *ordos = hammer
Gaulish Ordo-vices = placename, tribal name
Old Irish (Goídelc) ord = hammer
Irish (Gaeilge) ord [əuɾˠd̪ˠ / ɔːɾˠd̪ˠ] = sledgehammer
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) òrd [ɔːr̪ˠd] = hammer; cock, hammer (of a fireman): rounded but steep mountain
òrd-fiodha = mallet
òrd-ladhrach = claw hammer
òrd-mòr = sledgehammer
Manx (Gaelg) oard = hammer, sledgehammer
oard inginagh = claw hammer
gaal-oard = steam hammer
Proto-Brythonic *orð = hammer
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) ord, orth, yrd, orð = hammer
Welsh (Cymraeg) gordd [ɡɔrð] = hammer, mallet, sledgehammer
gorddio = to hammer with a mallet, drive with a sledgehammer
gordd haearn = sledgehammer
gordd bren = wooden mallet
Old Breton ord = mallet, hammer,
Middle Breton orz, horz = mallet, hammer,
Breton (Brezhoneg) horzh = mallet, gavel, hammer, pestle
horzhig = sledgehammer
horzh-fuzuilh = rifle butt

Etymology: possibly from the Proto-Indo-European *h₃erg-dʰh₁o-, from *h₃erg- (to perish) and *dʰeh₁- (to do) [source].

Ordovīcēs is the Latin name for a Celtic tribe who lived in what is now North Wales (where I live) and nearby parts of England. In Common Brittonic there were known as *Ordowīcī. The Ordovician geological period (c. 485 – 443 million years ago) is named after them as rocks associated with that period were first found in their former territory by Charles Lapworth in 1879 [source].

Irish (Gaeilge) casúr [əuɾˠd̪ˠ / ɔːɾˠd̪ˠ] = hammer
casúr ladhrach = claw hammer
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) casar [kasər] = small hammer, gavel, knocker
Manx (Gaelg) casoor = hammer (of a gun)

Etymology: from the Anglo-Norman cassur, from the Latin quassō (I shake, quake, wave, flourish), from quatiō (I shake, agitate), from the Proto-Indo-European *kʷeh₁t- (to shake) [source].

Words from the same Latin roots include quash (to suppress, crush) in English, casser (to break) in French, and cascar (to crack, split, hit) in Spanish [source].

Proto-Brythonic *morθul = hammer
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) morthol, morthwl, morthuyl, mwrthol, myrthwyl = hammer
Welsh (Cymraeg) morthwyl [ˈmɔrθuɨ̯l / ˈmɔrθui̯l] = hammer, mallet
morthwylio = to hammer, beat with a hammer, forge
morthwylwr = hammerer
morthwylfa = forge, smithy
morthwyl drws = door knocker
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) morthol = hammer
Cornish (Kernewek) morthol = hammer, beetle, maul
mortholya = to hammer
Middle Breton morzol = hammer
morzol dor = door knocker
Breton (Brezhoneg) morzhol = hammer
morzholad = hammer blow
morzholat = to hammer
morzholer = hammerer, horthumper
morzholig = hammer
morzhol-dor, morzhol an nor = door knocker

Etymology: from the British Latin *mortulus, from the Latin martulus (hammer), from marculus (small hammer), possibly from the Proto-Indo-European *melh₂tlo-, from *melh₂- (to grind) [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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Surfaces

Words for surface, skin and related things in Celtic languages:

Swans on Llyn Padarn / Elyrch ar Lyn Padarn

Proto-Celtic *tondā = surface, skin
Gaulish *tondā = surface, skin
Old Irish (Goídelc) tonn, tond = surface, skin
Irish (Gaeilge) tonn [t̪ˠɑun̪ˠ / t̪ˠuːn̪ˠ / t̪ˠʌn̪ˠ] = surface, skin
faoi mo thoinn = under my skin, within me
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) tonn [tɔun̪ˠ] = skin, hide
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) tonn, ton, ton(n)en = ley, unploughed land
Welsh (Cymraeg) ton [tɔn] = ley, unploughed land, turf, sod, sward, green, lawn, (earth’s) surface’ skin, rind, crust, peel, appearance, look
tonnen = skin, rind, crust, peel, surface, sod, sward, bog, swamp, quagmire
tondir = ley, lea-land
toniaraf, toniaru = to cover with planks, boards, etc
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) ton = unploughed land, meadow, lay
Cornish (Kernewek) tonn = grass
Old Breton tonnenn = rind, surface
Middle Breton ton = rind, surface
Breton (Brezhoneg) tonn = rind, surface

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European *tend- (to cut off). Words from the same Gaulish / Proto-Celtic roots include tonne in English and French, tunna / tonna (tun, box) in Latin, and tona (surface, kin, bark) in Galician [source].

Proto-Celtic *krokkeno- = skin
Old Irish (Goídelc) croiccenn [ˈkrokʲen͈] = skin, hide, bark, husk
Irish (Gaeilge) craiceann [ˈkɾˠacən̪ˠ / ˈkɾˠæcən̪ˠ] = skin, surface
cruachraicneach = hide-bound
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) craiceann [krɛçgʲən̪ˠ] = skin, parchment
craiceannaiche = skinner
far-chraiceann = epidermis
fo-chraiceann = hypodermic
pàipear-craicinn = parchment
Manx (Gealg) crackan [ˈkraːɣən] = skin, pelt, fur, hide, rind, peel, slough
crackanagh = (of the) skin, cutaneous
aachrackan = veneer
fochrackanagh = hypodermic
crackan screeuee = parchment
Proto-Brythonic *krʉn = skin
Old Welsh groen = skin
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) croen, cruyn, croyn, crwyn = skin, hide, pelt
Welsh (Cymraeg) croen [kroːɨ̯n / krɔi̯n] = skin, hide, pelt, peel, rind, surface, crust; film; a crusty or contemptible fellow
croeni, croenio = to form skin, skin over, heal up
croendenau = thin-skinned, sensitive, easily hurt, touchy
croendew = thick-skinned, insensible, insensitive, callous
croenen = thin skin, cuticle, pellicle, film
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) crochen = skin
Cornish (Kernewek) kroghen = hide
kroghen lagas = eyelid
kroghendanow = sensitive
Middle Breton kroc’hen, krec’hen, krec’hin = skin, crust, membrane
Breton (Brezhoneg) kroc’hen [ˈkʁoːχɛn] = skin, crust
kroc’henenn = membrane

Etymology: probably loaned from a non-Indo-European substrate language [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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This & That

Words for this and that in Celtic languages.

That & That

Proto-Celtic *so [so] = this
Gaulish so = this
Old Irish (Goídelc) so, sa, se, sea, seo, siu = this
Irish (Gaeilge) seo [ʃɔ] = this, here
anseo = here, in this place
go dtí seo = up to now
faoi seo = by now
roimhe seo = before this, formerly
seo dhuit = here, take it
seo linn = here we go
seo leat = come on
seo d’am (agat)! = now is your chance!
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) seo [ʃɔ] = this, these
seo, seo … = (well) now then, …
an-seo = here
an déidh seo = after this, afterwards, hereupon, later on
chuige seo = hitherto, until now
feadh an-seo = around here, hereabouts
gu seo = up until now
roimhe seo = before, by now
Manx (Gaelg) shoh = this, this here
ad shoh = those, those here
ayns shoh = here
myr shoh = in this manner, thus
roish shoh = previously
(yn chiaghtin) shoh cheet = coming / next (week)

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European *só (this, that), which is also the root of the English words this, that, the, then, than and there [source].

Proto-Celtic *sindos = this
*sondo- = that
Gaulish sinde, sindas = that
Old Irish (Goídelc) sin [sʲinʲ] = that
in [inʲ] = the
Irish (Gaeilge) sin [ʃɪnʲ / ʃɨ̞nʲ] = that
an [ənˠ / ə.n̠ʲ / ə] = the
ó shin = ago, back, since then, from then
mar sin = like that, thus
mar sin de = in that case, therefore
agus mar sin de = and so on
go dtí sin = up to that point, until then
iar sin = after that, thereupon
roimhe sin = before that
faoi sin = by then
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) sin [ʃin] = that, those, there
an, am, a’ = the
an-sin = there, therein, thither, then
sin thu! = well done, bravo!, well done
mar sin dheth = consequently …, so, therefore
uime sin = therefore, thereupon, then
Manx (Gaelg) shen = that
yn = the
ad shen = those
ayns shen = there
myr shen = in that manner, so, therefore, thus
roish shen = before then, prior to that
Old Welsh hinn = this, that
ir = the
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) hvnn, hunn, hun, hon, hwnn = this, that
y, yr, ‘r = the
Welsh (Cymraeg) hyn [hɨ̞n /hɪn] = this, these, this time,this place, these, they; such (a), so much, so many
hynny = that, that time, that place, that number/amount, those
hyn a hyn = so much, so many, a certain quantity, such and such
ar hyn o bryd = now, at this (point in) time, at the present moment
hwn [hʊn] = this (one), he (him, she (her), it; that (with masculine nouns)
hwnnw, hwnna = that
hwn a hwn = such a one, such as such a person, so-and-so
hwn/hon/hyn a’r llall = this and that; this, that and the other
hon [hɔn] = that (with feminine nouns)
honno, honna = that
y, yr, ‘r = the
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) hen = this
henna = the one there, that one, that
homma = this female here, this one, this
hon = this female, this
an = the
Cornish (Kernewek) henn, hedn = that
henna, honna = that (one)
dres henna = moreover, besides
wosa henna = after that, later, thereafter
an = the
Middle Breton henn, hen = that, after that
an, ar, al = the
Breton (Brezhoneg) an, ar, al = the

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European *sḗm (one) or *só (this, that) [source].

Old Irish (Goídelc) siút, sút = that, yon
út = yon, yonder
Irish (Gaeilge) siúd [ʃuːd̪ˠ] = that, yon
ansiúd = yonder, there beyond
úd = yon, yonder, that … over there
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) siud [ʃid] = that (over there), yon (those)
an-siud = there, yonder
Manx (Gaelg) shid = yonder, that
ad shid = those
ayns shid hoal = over yonder

Etymology: uncertain

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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Servants

Words for servants, ploughmen and related people in Celtic languages.

Tour Scotland March Horse Ploughing

Proto-Celtic *ambaxtos = servant
Gaulish *ambaxtos = vassal, high-ranking servant
Old Irish (Goídelc) amus = servant
amsach = mercenary
Irish (Gaeilge) amhas = hireling, servant, mercenary, hooligan
amhsach = wild, unruly
amhasóireacht = hooliganism
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) amhas [au.əs] = savage, wild person, madman
amhsach = wild, uncontrollable, stupid, dull
Proto-Brythonic *ammaɨθ [amˈmaɨ̯θ] = servant, worker, labourer
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) amaeth = ploughman, husbandman, farmer, agriculture
Welsh (Cymraeg) amaeth [ˈameɨ̯θ / ˈamei̯θ] = ploughman, husbandman, farmer, agriculture, ploughmanship, tillage
amaethadwy = farmable, cultivable
amaetha(f), amaethu = to farm, husband, plough, cultivate
amaethdir = arable land, land suitable for cultivation, farm land
amaethdy = farmhouse
amaethddyn = agriculturalist, farmer
amaethedig = farmed, cultivated, cultured
amaethyddiaeth = agriculture, farming
Cornish (Kernewek) ammeth = agriculture, farming
Old Breton ambaith = agriculture, farming

Etymology: from the Proto-Celtic *ambi- (around),‎ *ageti (to drive) and‎ *-os, from the Proto-Indo-European word *h₂m̥bʰi-h₂eǵ- (drive around) [source].

The English word amassador comes from the same root, via the Middle English ambassadore from the Anglo-Norman ambassadeur (ambassador), from the Old Italian ambassadore, from the Old Occitan ambaisador (ambassador), from ambaissa (service, mission, errand), from the Medieval Latin ambasiator (ambassador), from the Gothic 𐌰𐌽𐌳𐌱𐌰𐌷𐍄𐌹 (andbahti – service, function), from the Proto-Germanic *ambahtaz (servant), from the Gaulish *ambaxtos [source]. The word embassy comes from the same Gaulish word [source].

Proto-Celtic *wastos = servant
Gaulish *wassos = young man, squire
Old Irish (Goídelc) foss = attendant, man-servant, servant
Proto-Brythonic *gwass = boy, servant
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) guas, gwas = boy, lad, servant
Welsh (Cymraeg) gwas [ɡwaːs] = boy, lad, stripling, youngster, young man; servant, attendant, employee, officer, vassal, slave
gwasanaeth = service, attendance, a ministering, office, duty, employment
gwasanaethu = to serve, be a servant, attend, wait upon, minister
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) guas = servant
gwas = a youth, servant, one of the common people, a mean person, a fellow, rogue, rascal
gwasanaeth = attendance, service, bondage, slavery
Cornish (Kernewek) gwas = chap, fellow, guy, servant
gwas hwel = workman
gwas ti = housemaker
Old Breton guos = vassal, man, husband, farmer
Middle Breton goas = vassal, man, husband, farmer (who rents a farm)
Breton (Brezhoneg) gwaz [ˈɡwaːs] = (young) man, vassal, valet, servant, husband, mermaid

Etymology: possibly comes from the Proto-Indo-European word *upo-sth₂-o-s (standing beneath) [source].

The English word vassal comes from the same Celtic roots, via the Old French vassal, the Medieval Latin vassallus (manservant, domestic, retainer), from the Latin vassus (servant) from the Gaulish *wassos [source].

Old Irish (Goídelc) seirbísech = auxiliary, ancillary, servant, agent
Irish (Gaeilge) seirbhíseach = servant
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) seirbheiseach [ʃerʲevɪʃəx] = servant, servitor
seirbheisiche = servant
Manx (Gaelg) shirveishagh = attendant, clergyman, minister, servant, server, vassal

Etymology: from the Old French servise (service, servitude, vasselage), from the Latin servitium (slavery, servitude, service), from servus (servant, serf, slave) [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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Waves

Words for wave and related things in Celtic languages.

Newquay

Proto-Celtic *tundā = wave, billow
Old Irish (Goídelc) tonn [ton͈] = wave, outpouring, sea, abundance, bog, swamp
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) tonn = wave, outpouring, sea, abundance, bog, swamp
Irish (Gaeilge) tonn [t̪ˠɑun̪ˠ/t̪ˠuːn̪ˠ/t̪ˠʌn̪ˠ] = wave
tonn tuile = tidal wave
tonn teasa = heat-wave
tonn turrainge = shock wave
tonnach = wavy, billowy
tonnadh = to wave, surge
tonnáil = waving, rippling, undulation
tonná = wavelet, ripple
tonnúil = wavy, undulating
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) tonn [tɔun̪ˠ] = wave, tilde, quantity of liquid, pile, heap
tonn-fuaime = soundwave
tonn-taomaidh, tonn-tuile = tidal wave
tonn-crithe = shockwave
tonnadh = undulating, undulation, vomiting
tonnan, tonnag = small wave
tonnach = waved, wavy
tonnachd = waviness
Manx (Gaelg) tonn = wave, billow
tonn hiass = heat-wave
tonn hidee = tidal wave
tonn inçhyn = brainwave
tonnagh = undulating, billowy, wavy
tonnaghey to undulate, surge, bilow, undulation
tonnaght = undulation, waviness
Proto-Brythonic *tonn = wave
Old Welsh tonnou = wave
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) tonn, ton = wave
Welsh (Cymraeg) ton [tɔn] = wave, the sea; wavelength
ton lanw = tidal wave
ton radio = radio wave
tonfedd = wavelength
tonffurf = waveform
toniad = undulation, oscillation, frequency, modulation, intonation
tonial = surge or swell (of waves)
tonniant = fluctuation
tonni = to undulate, ripple, oscillate, surge
tonnog = wavy, billowy, rough, choppy, roling, undulating
tonyddol = melodious, intoning, tonic, intonational
Middle Cornish (Cernewec / Kernuak) ton = wave
Cornish (Kernewek) tonn = wave
tonnek = wavy
tonnhes, tonnhys = wavelength
Middle Breton) tonn = wave
Breton (Brezhoneg) tonn = wave

Etymology: possibly from the Proto-Indo-European *(s)tewd- (to hit, beat), or from the Proto-Celtic *tondā (surface, skin), or from the PIE *temh₁- (to cut) [source].

The PIE root *(s)tewd- (to hit, beat) is the origin of the Irish tit (to fall, collapse, descend), the Scottish Gaelic tuit (to fall, happen, slip), and the Manx tuitt (to fall, happen, slip) [source]. English words from the same root include study, studio, student and obtuse [source].

The the Proto-Celtic *tondā (surface, skin) is the root of the Gaulish *tondā, from which we get tonn (surface, skin) in Irish, tonn (skin, hide) in Scottish Gaelic, ton (turf, sod, sward, surface) in Welsh, ton (unploughed land, meadow) in Cornish, and tonn (rind, dermis, surface) in Breton.

It was borrowed into Latin as tunna / tonna (tun [a large cask], box), which became tonne (tonne, ton) in French, which was borrowed into English as tonne (a unit of mass equal to 1000kg; a score of 100 in darts) [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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Sailing

Words for sail and related things in Celtic languages.

sailing ship

Proto-Celtic *siglom = sail, course, run
Old Irish (Goídelc) séol [sʲeːu̯l] = sail
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) séol = sail
séolaid = to sail
Irish (Gaeilge) seol [ʃoːl̪ˠ/ʃɔːlˠ] = sail; covering, canopy; drift, tend, course, direction, flow, motion
seoladh = to sail, sailing; course, direction, guidance, dispatch
seoladóir = shipper
seoladóireacht = shipping
seolchrann = mast
seoltóir = sailor, sender, remitter, drover, (electrical) conductor
seoltóireacht = sailing
long seol = sailing ship
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) seòl [ʃɔːl̪ˠ] = sail; navigate, direct, guide, govern, regulate
seòlaid = shipping route, passage, sway(ing), nervous movement
seòl-mara = tide
seòladair = sailor
seòladaireach = nautical
Manx (Gaelg) shiauill = sail, navigate,
shiauilley = to sail, navigate, sailing
shiauilteyr = ferryman, sailor, seafarer, seaman
shiaulteyragh = nautical
Proto-Brythonic *hɨɣl = sail, course, run
Old Welsh huil = sail
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) hwyl, hvyl, huyl = sail
Welsh (Cymraeg) hwyl [huːɨ̯l/hʊi̯l] = sail, sheet, covering, pall; journey, progress, revolution, orbit, course, route, career, rush, assault; hilarity, jollity, mirth, amusement, fun, humour
hwylbawl, hwylbolyn = boom, bowspirt
hwylbren = mast, flagstaff
hwyldroaf, hwyldroi = to tack, change course, veer
hwylfa = way, narrow road or street, lane, path, alley, voyage
hwylfwrdd = sailboard, windsurfer
hwylfyrddio = to sailboard, windsurf
hwylio = to sail, embark, set out on a voyage or journey, navigate
hwyliwr = navigator, mariner, sailor, leader, organizer
Old Cornish guio = sail
Middle Cornish (Cernewec / Kernuak) gol, goyl, guil = sail (of a ship)
gwelan gôl = sail yard
Cornish (Kernewek) gool = sail
golya = to sail
skath-wolya = sailing boat
gorhel golyow = sailing ship
Breton (Brezhoneg) gouel = sail
gouelier = to sail
gouelierezh = sailmaker

Etymology: uncertain. Possibly from the Old English seġ(e)l (sail), from the Proto-Germanic *segl (sail), from *seglą (sheet, sail), the origins of which are uncertain. Possibly cognate with the Latin sagum (coarse woolen coat), from the Gaulish *sagos (wool cloak). Related words include sail in English, zeil (sail, tarpaulin) in Dutch, Segel (sail) in German, and sejl (sail) in Danish [source].

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Here’s Leis an Lurgainn, a song in Scottish Gaelic about sailing:

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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Rotten Fragrance

Today we’re looking at the words for rotten and related things in Celtic languages.

Rotten wood

Proto-Celtic *bragnos = rotten
Gaulish brennos = rotten
Old Irish (Gaoidhealg) brén [bʲrʲeːn] = foul, putrid, rotten, stinking
Irish (Gaeilge) bréan [bʲɾʲiːa̯nˠ / bʲɾʲeːnˠ] = foul, putrid, rotten; to pollute, putrefy
bréanlach = filthy place, cesspool
bréanóg = refuse heap
bréantachán = stinker
bréantas = rottenness, stench, filth
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) breun [brʲeːn] = foetid, putrid, disgusting, filthy, nasty, stinking
breunlach = sinking bog
breunachd = corruption, rottenness
breunan = dunghill, dirty person, dirty/smelly object, crabbit/grumpy person, grouch
breunad = degree of foetidness/putridness, degree of disgustingness/filthiness/nastiness, degree of stink
breuntas = stench, stink, putrefaction, putridness
Manx (Gaelg) breinn = foetid, loathsome, malodorous, nasty, offensive, pestilential, putrid, rancid, rotten, smelly, stinking
breinnaghey = to become smelly, putrefy, taint, stink
Proto-Brythonic *braɨn = foul, stinking putrid
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) brean = rotten
Welsh (Cymraeg) braen [braːɨ̯n / brai̯n] = rotten, putrid, corrupt, mouldy, withered, fragile; rot, putrefaction, corruption, decay
braen(i)ad = rotting, decomposition, rottenness, putridness
braenu = to rot, putrefy, make/become corrupt, become mouldy
braenedig = rotten, putrefied, corrupt, festering, gangrenous, mouldy, wounded
Cornish (Kernewek) breyn = putrid, rotten
breyna = to decay, rot
breynans = decay
breynder = rot
Middle Breton brein = rotten
Breton (Brezhoneg) brein = rotten
breinadur = corruption
breinañ = to rot, decay
breinidigezh = putrefaction

Etymology: from the Proto-Indo-European *bʰreHg- (to smell, have a strong odour) [source]. Words from the same PIE root include flair, fragrant, and bray in English, and брезгать (to be fastidious/squeamish, to disdain) in Russian [source].

The Gaulish word brennos was borrowed into Vulgar Latin and ended up as brener (to trick, fool, hoodwink) in French, via the Old French bren (bran, filth, excrement). The English word bran comes from the same Gaulish root, via the Middle English bran(ne) / bren and the Old French bren [source].

The Galician word braña (mire, bog, marsh, moorland) is thought to come from the Proto-Celtic *bragnos, possibly via Celtiberian [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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