Ploughs

Words for plough* and related things in Celtic languages.

Plough

*plough = plow for those of you in North America.

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Proto-Celtic *aratrom = plough
Old Irish (Goídelc) arathar = plough, ploughing equipment, tillage
airid = to plough
airem = ploughman
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) arathar = plough, ploughing equipment, tillage
airem = ploughman, tiller
airid = to plough, till
airithe = ploughed
Irish (Gaeilge) arathar = ploughing equipment, plough, ploughing (literary)
air = plough (literary)
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) àrach [aːrəx] = ploughshare, utensils for ploughing (archaic)
Manx (Gaelg) erroo = ploughman, tiller of land
errooid = cultivation, tillage, ploughmanship
Proto-Brythonic *aradr [aˈradr] = plough
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) aratrum, aradyr, aradr, aratr = plough
aradrur, aradrwr = ploughman
aradỽy, aradwy = arable or ploughed land
Welsh (Cymraeg) aradr [ˈaradr/ˈaːradr] = plough, the Plough
aradraf, aradu = to plough, till, cultivate
aradrswch = ploughshare
araduriaeth = (act of) ploughing, ploughmanship
aradrwr = ploughman
aradrwy = arable or ploughed land
Old Cornish aradar = plough
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) aradar, ardar, aratum = plough
araderuur, arator = ploughmen
aras = to plough, till
Cornish (Kernewek) arader = plough
araderor = ploughman
aradow = arable
aras = to plough
Middle Breton (Brezonec) ararz, arazr = plough
Breton (Brezhoneg) arar [ˈɑːrar] = plough
aradeg = ploughing, ploughing competition
aradenn = ploughing, surge of anger
arat = to plough, spin

Etymology: from Proto-Indo-European *h₂érh₃trom (plough), from *h₂erh₃- (to plough) and *-trom (instrumental suffix). Words from the same roots include ard (a simple plough consisting of a spike dragged through the soil) in English, arður (plough, profit, gain) in Icelandic, årder (plough) in Swedish, ader (plough) in Estonian and arado (plough) in Spanish [source].

Proto-Celtic *kanktus / *kanxtus = plough, plough beam
Old Irish (Goídelc) cécht = plough-beam
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) cécht, cecht = plough-beam, plough
Irish (Gaeilge) céachta [ˈkeːx.t̪ˠə] = plough
céachtaíl = ploughing
céachtaire = ploughwright
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) ceuchd = plough (obsolete)
Manx (Gaelg) keeaght [ˈki.axt] = plough

Etymology: from Proto-Celtic *kankā (branch), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱank- (branch). Words from the same roots include géag (branch, bough, limb) in Irish, cainc (branch) in Welsh, gancio (hook) in Italian, and gancho (hook, peg) in Spanish [source].

Old Irish (Goídelc) trebaid = to cultivate, till, plough, inhabit
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) trebad = (act of) ploughing cultivating, husbandry
trebaid = to cultivate, till, plough, inhabit, dwell
Irish (Gaeilge) treabh [ˈtʲɾʲavˠ/ˈtʲɾʲəu] = to plough; till, cultivate, occupy, inhabit (literary)
treabhadh = ploughing
treabhdóir = ploughman
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) treabh [tro] = to till (the ground), plough, cultivate, delve
treabhadh = ploughing
treabhta = ploughed, tilled, cultivated
Manx (Gaelg) traaue = to plough (up), till, furrow, cleave, ploughing, tilling
traauee = ploughing, contributing, to tillage
traaueyder = ploughman

Etymology: from Old Irish treb (house(hold), farm, tribe), from Proto-Celtic *trebā (dwelling), from Proto-Indo-European *treb- (dwelling, settlement) [source]. For more related words, see the post about Towns and Tribes.

Middle Welsh (Kymraec) gwyd, guyd = (wooden frame of a) plough
Welsh (Cymraeg) gwŷdd [ɡwɨːð] = plough (North Wales), tree(s), branches, timber, masts, loom
Etymology: from Proto-Brythonic *gwɨð (wood, trees), from Proto-Celtic *widus (wood, trees), from PIE *h₁weydʰh₁- (to separate, split, cleave, divide) [source]. For more related words, see the post about Trees, Wood(s) and Forests.

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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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Pins & Needles

Words for pin, needle and related things in Celtic languages.

Pins and Needles

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Proto-Celtic *delgos = pin, needle
Gaulish *dalgis = scythe
Old Irish (Goídelc) delg [dʲerɡ] = thorn, pin, brooch, peg
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) delg = thorn, pin, brooch, peg, spike, nail, pointed implement
delga, delgu = pin, peg, spike, tip, point
delgach = pointed
Irish (Gaeilge) dealg [ˈdʲal̪ˠəɡ / ˈdʲalˠəɡ] = thorn, prickle, spine, spike, pin, peg, pointed implement, brooch
dealgán = knitting-needle
deilgne = thorns, prickles
deilgneach = thorny, prickly, barbed
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) dealg [dʲal̪ˠag] = pin, skewer, knitting needle, prick(le)
dealg-fighidh = knitting needle
dealgan = spindle, small pin, skewer
dealg brodaidh = cattle prod
dealgach [dʲal̪ˠagəx] = prickly, stinging
dealganach [dʲal̪ˠaganəx] = pertaining to or abounding in spindles, small pins or skewers
Manx (Gaelg) jialg = broochpin, needle, prick(le), quill, spine, thorn, pin
jialg broghil = brooch
jialg fuilt = hairpin
jialg oashyr = knitting needle
jialgagh = prickly, spiniferous, spiny, thorny
jialgaghey = to pin, prickle, pinning
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) dala = sting
Welsh (Cymraeg) dala [ˈdala] = sting, bite
Old Cornish (Cernewec) delc(h) = jewel, necklace
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) delc = necklace
Cornish (Kernewek) delk = necklace

Etymology from Proto-Indo-European *dʰelg- (sting). Words from the same root include dálkur (spine of a fish, knife, dagger, [newspaper] column) in Icelandic, dilgus (prickly) in Lithuanian, falce (scythe, sickle) in Italian, hoz (sickle) in Spanish, and falcate (shaped like a sickle), falcifer (sickle-bearing, holding a scythe) in English [source].

Words from the same Proto-Celtic root, via Gaulish *dalgis (scythe) and Latin *daculum (scythe) , possibly include dall (mowing, billhook) in Catalan, dalle (scythe) in Spanish, and dalha (scythe) in Occitan (Languedoc) [source].

The English word dagger, and related words in other languages, such as daga (dagger) in Spanish, and Degen (rapier, épée) in German, might come from the same roots [source].

Proto-Celtic *ber = (cooking) spin
Old Irish (Goídelc) bi(u)r [bʲir] = stake, spit, point, spear, spike
berach = pointed, sharp
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) bir = stake, spit, point, spear, spike
biraid = to pierce
biraigthe = sharpened, pointed
birda = pointed, sharp
birín = little spike, sharp point, dart, little spear
Irish (Gaeilge) bior [ˈbʲɨ̞ɾˠ] = pointed rod or shaft, spit, spike, point
biorach = pointed, sharp
bioraigh = to point, sharpen
biorán = pin, hand (of clock)
bioranta = sharp
biorú = pointing, sharpening
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) bior [bir] = prickle, thorn, point, pointed object, knitting needle
biorachadh [birəxəɣ] = sharpening, making pointed, staring
biorag [birag] = small thorn or prickle, spiteful sharp-tongued woman
biorach [birəx] = pointed, sharp, piercing, prickly
bioraich [birɪç] = sharpen, make pointed, stare
Manx (Gaelg) birr, byr = point, spit
birragh, byrragh = pointed, scathing, sharp, spiky, tapered, prickly
birranagh = pointed, sharp
birraghey = to sharpen, taper, tone up
Proto-Brythonic ber = (cooking) spit
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) bêr, ber = spear, lance, pike, spit, skewer
beraid = as much as can be held on a spit
Welsh (Cymraeg) bêr [beːr] = spear, lance, pike, spit, skewer
ber(i)af, berio, beru = to spit (meat), impale, stab with a spear
beriad = as much as can be held on a spit
bergi = turnspit (dog)
bernod = dagger, obelisk
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) ber, bêr = spit, lance, spear
Cornish (Kernewek) berya = to stab, run through
Middle Breton (Brezonec) ber, bèr, bir = (roasting) spit
Breton (Brezhoneg) ber [beːr] = spindle, point, spike
beriad = pin
berian = skewer

Etymology from Proto-Indo-European *gʷéru (spit, spear) [source]. Words from the same PIE root include verrocchio (olive oil press) in Italian, verrou (bolt, lock) in French, cerrojo (bolt, latch) in Spanish [source].

Proto-Celtic *snātantā = needle (?)
*snātos = thread
Old Irish (Goídelc) snáthat = needle
snáith = thread
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) snáthat, snāthad, snathat = needle
snáithe = thread
Irish (Gaeilge) snáthaid [ˈsˠn̪ˠɑːhəd̪ˠ] = needle,
snáthadóir = needle-maker
snáth = thread, yarn, web
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) snàthad [sn̪ˠaː.əd] = needle, pointer (on a dial)
snàthadair [sn̪ˠaː.ədɪrʲ] = needle-maker
snàthadalan [sn̪ˠaː.ədəl̪ˠan] = needlecase
snàthadh [sn̪ˠaː.əɣ] = threading, stringing
snàthadag [sn̪ˠaː.ədag] = sting
snàth [sn̪ˠaː] = thread, yarn
Manx (Gaelg) snaid = needle, pointer, indicator, index
snaid whaaley = sewing needle
snaidagh = needle-like
snaidey = knit
obbyr snaidey = needlework
snaih, snaie = line, thread, yarn, worm, netting
Old Welsh (Kymraec) notuid = needle, pin
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) notwyd, nottwyd, nodwydd = needle, pin
Welsh (Cymraeg) nodwydd [ˈnɔdwɨ̞ð/ˈnɔdʊi̯ð] = needle, pin, pointer, dial
nodwyddaf, nodwyddo = to sew, stitch, inject, prick
nodwyddiad = acupuncture
nodwyddig = small needle
nodwyddwaith = needlework
nodwyddwr = needlemaker, pinmaker, sewer, stitcher, tailor
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) nadedh, nadzhedh = needle
noden = thread, yarn
Cornish (Kernewek) naswydh, najedh = needle
neusen, neujen = thread, yarn
neusenna = to thread
Middle Breton (Brezonec) nadoez, nados, nadoz = sewing needle
neut, neud = thread
Breton (Brezhoneg) nadoez [beːr] = needle, hand, pointer, spire
nadoezenn = (clock) hand
nadoezier = needle maker
neud = thread, filaments, net, algae

Etymology from Proto-Indo-European *(s)neh₁- (to spin, sew) [source]. Words from the same PIE root include needle, nerve, neuron, sinew and snood in English [source].

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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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Pickaxe

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

Claes Oldenburg

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Middle Irish (Gaoidhleag) píce = pole, pike
pícóid = mattock, pickaxe
Irish (Gaeilge) píce [ˈpʲiːcɪ] = pike, fork, peak
píceáil = pike, fork, pitchfork, peak
píceálaí = forker, pitcher
píceán = peak, tip
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) pic, pìc [piːçgʲ] = pike
pìceach [piːçgʲəx] = armed with pikes, abounding in pikes
pìcear = pikeman
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) pig = point, spike, pike
pigo = to prick, pierce, goad, peck, sting, bite
pigawd = a thrusting or stabbing with a spear, a pricking
Welsh (Cymraeg) pig [piːɡ] = point, spike, pike, lance, pick(axe), prong, beak
pigach = darts
pigadail = obelisk, spire, pyramid, cone
pigaf, pigo = to prick, pierce, goad, peck, sting, bite
pig(i)aid = as much as can be picked up or carried on a pitchfork, beakful
pigau = pitchfork, hay-fork
pigawd = a thrusting or stabbing with a spear, a pricking
pigell = goad, prick, prickle
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) piga = to prick, prickle, sting
pigol = mattock, pick, pickaxe
Cornish (Kernewek) pig = grub axe, grubber, pick, pickaxe, pickle
piga = to goad, incite, sting
pigell = hoe, pick(axe), pickle
pigallas = to hoe
pigellik = picker
Middle Breton (Brezonec) pig = pickaxe
Breton (Brezhoneg) pik = piquant, point, pique
pikañ = to sting, bite, pinch
pikezenn = pike, spade (in cards)
pigell = pickaxe

Etymology (Irish): from Old French pik(k)e, from Latin pīcca (pickace, pike), possibly from Frankish *pikkōn (to peck, strike), or from Frankish *pīk (sharp point, pike), from Proto-Germanic *pīkaz (sharp point, pike, pickaxe, peak) probably of imitative origin [source].

Etymology (Scottish Gaelic, Welsh & Cornish): probably from English pike or the Middle English pyke (pike, sharp point), which ultimately come from the same Proto-Germanic roots as pik(k)e in Old French.

Words from the same roots include peck, pick, pike, pique, pitch in English [source].

Irish (Gaeilge) caib [kɑbʲ/kabʲ] = dibble
caibeáil = to plant with an implement, dibble
caibeáilaí = planter (of seed), dibbler
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) caibe [kɛbə] = space, mattock, iron part of tools
caibe-sìthe = fairy spade (amulet given to sick people & cattle)
Manx (Gaelg) kiebbey = spade, mattock
Old Welsh cep = pickaxe, mattock, hoe, ploughshare
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) keyp, keib, caib = pickaxe, mattock, hoe, ploughshare
Welsh (Cymraeg) caib = pickaxe, mattock, hoe, ploughshare
caib garddwr = hoe
caib big, caib bicys = pickaxe

Etymology: unknown

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, Lexicon Cornu-britannicum: A Dictionary of the Ancient Celtic Language of Cornwall, Dictionaire Favereau, TermOfis, Le dictionnaire diachronique du breton, Etymological Dictionary Of Proto Celtic

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Axes and Hatchets

In this post we’re looking at the words for axe and related things in Celtic languages.

Axe in wood

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Proto-Celtic *tāxslo- = axe
Old Irish (Goídelc) tál = adze
Middle Irish (Gaoidhleag) tál = adze
Irish (Gaeilge) tál [t̪ˠɑːlˠ/t̪ˠæːlˠ] = adze
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) tàl [taːl̪ˠ] = adze
tàl-fuinn = hoe
Manx (Gaelg) taal = adze

An adze cutting tool that has a curved blade set at a right angle to the handle and is used in shaping wood. [source].

Etymology possibly from the Proto-Indo-European *tetḱ-(dʰ)lo-, from *teḱ- (to sire, beget) [source]. Words from the same roots include architect, technical, text and textile in English, цясла́ [t͡sʲasˈɫa] (adze) in Belausian, тесло [tʲɪsˈɫo] (adze) in Russian, and teslă (adze) in Romanian [source].

Old Irish (Goídelc) túag = axe, hatchet
Middle Irish (Gaoidhleag) túag = axe, hatchet
túagaid = to hew, chop, strike with an axe
túagrótae = roadway cleared with an axe
Irish (Gaeilge) tua [t̪ˠuə] = axe, hatchet
tuadóir = axe-man, hewer, chopper
tuadóireacht = (act of) hewing, shaping, chopping
tuaigh = to chop (with an axe)
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) tuagh [tuəɣ] = axe
tuaghadair = axeman, axe-wielder
Manx (Gaelg) teigh = axe, chopper, hatchet

Etymology possibly from the Proto-Indo-European *(s)tewk- (to push, press, strike, beat, pierce), from *(s)tew- (to push, hit) [source]. Words from the same roots include tkát (to weave) in Czech, tkać (to weave, stick, tuck) in Polish, and тъка [tɐˈkɤ] (to spin, plait, entwine, weave) in Bulgarian [source], and words for hole & hollow in Celtic languages.

Proto-Celtic *biyatlis = (?)
Old Irish (Goídelc) biáil [ˈbʲi.aːlʲ] = axe, hatchet
Middle Irish (Gaoidhleag) bíail, biáil = axe, hatchet, battle-axe
Irish (Gaeilge) biail [bʲiəlʲ] = hatchet
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) biail = axe, hatchet (archaic)
Old Welsh bahell = axe
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) buyall, bwell, bwyeill = axe
bwyellic = small axe, hatchet
bwyallawt = axe stroke
bwiallawc = bearing an axe, armed with an axe; like an axe
Welsh (Cymraeg) bwyall, bwyell, bwell = axe, battle-axe
bwyellan, bwyellig = small axe, hatchet
bwyellangaib = pickaxe, hoe
bwyellod, bwyallod = stroke or cut with an axe, axe stroke
bwyellog, bwyallog = bearing an axe, armed with an axe; like an axe
bwyellwr = woodman
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) biail, boell, bool = axe, hatchet
Cornish (Kernewek) bool = axe, chopper, hachet
bolik = (small) axe, chopper, hachet
Middle Breton (Brezonec) bouhazl, bouchazl, bouchal, boc’hal = axe
Breton (Brezhoneg) bouc’hal [ˈbuː.ɣal] = axe, hammered
bouc’halig = hatchet

Etymology: from Proto-Celtic *bināti (to strike, hit, beat) from the Proto-Indo-European *bʰi-né-h₂-ti, from bʰeyh₂- (to strike, hew) [source]. Words from the same roots include billhook and bone in English, bain (to extract, separate, strike) and béim (a blow, emphasis, beat) in Irish, gofid (grief, sorrow, regret) in Welsh [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, Lexicon Cornu-britannicum: A Dictionary of the Ancient Celtic Language of Cornwall, Dictionaire Favereau, TermOfis, Le dictionnaire diachronique du breton, Etymological Dictionary Of Proto Celtic

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