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Indo-European Lexicon

PIE Etymon and IE Reflexes

Below we display: a Proto-Indo-European (PIE) etymon adapted from Pokorny, with our own English gloss; our Semantic Field assignment(s) for the etymon, linked to information about the field(s); an optional Comment; and Reflexes (derived words) in various Indo-European languages, organized by family/group in west-to-east order where Germanic is split into West/North/East families and English, our language of primary emphasis, is artificially separated from West Germanic. IE Reflexes appear most often as single words with any optional letter(s) enclosed in parentheses; but alternative full spellings are separated by '/' and "principal parts" appear in a standard order (e.g. masculine, feminine, and neuter forms) separated by commas.

Reflexes are annotated with: Part-of-Speech and/or other Grammatical feature(s); a short Gloss which, especially for modern English reflexes, may be confined to the oldest sense; and some Source citation(s) with 'LRC' always understood as editor. Keys to PoS/Gram feature abbreviations and Source codes appear below the reflexes; at the end are links to the previous/next etyma [in Pokorny's alphabetic order] that have reflexes.

Fans of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings may appreciate the source & meaning tips that pop up when the mouse pointer hovers over a non-obvious word or name that he coined from Indo-European (usually Old English or Old Norse) stock. But only reflexes of PIE etyma can be included, and these tend to concentrate in the vocabulary of Rohan and the Shire.

All reflex pages are currently under active construction; as time goes on, corrections may be made and/or more etyma & reflexes may be added.

Note: this page is for systems/browsers with Unicode® support, but fonts for only the Unicode 2.0 character set (including combining diacritics). Versions of this page rendered in alternate character sets are available via links (see Unicode 3 and ISO-8859-1) in the left margin.

Pokorny Etymon: 8. el-, elē̆i-, lē̆i-, olī̆nā   'to bend; elbow'

Semantic Fields: to Bend; Elbow


Indo-European Reflexes:

Family/Language Reflex(es) PoS/Gram. Gloss Source(s)
Old Irish: uilenn n elbow AHD
Irish: uillinn n elbow AHD
Old English: el(e)boga/elnboga n.masc elbow W7/ASD
  eln n.fem ell W7/ASD
  lim n.neut limb, joint; branch IEW
  liþ n joint, limb, body member LRC
Middle English: elbowe n elbow W7
  eln n ell W7
  lim n limb; branch W7
English: arshin n ell AHD
  elbow n joint of arm AHD/W7
  ell n unit of length: 45 inches AHD/W7
  limb n arm/leg, appendage W7
  Limlight prop.n Rohan border river in Tolkien: The Lord of the Rings LRC
  uilleann adj re: elbow-operated Celtic bagpipe AHD
  ulna n inner bone of forearm AHD/W7
  Wandlimb prop.n Entwife in Tolkien: The Lord of the Rings LRC
Old Frisian: (i)elne n.fem ell ASD
Frisian: jelne n ell ASD
Dutch: el(le) n.fem ell ASD
  elleboog n.masc elbow ASD
Old High German: el(i)na/elle n.fem ell ASD
  elinbogo n elbow W7
  lid n joint, link LRC
Middle High German: el(l)enboge n.masc elbow ASD
  eln(e)/ellen/elline n.fem ell ASD
German: Elle n.fem ell ASD
  El(len)bogen/Elnbogn n.masc elbow ASD
  Glied n.neut limb, body member LRC
Old Norse: liðr n.masc joint LRC
  limr n.str.fem limb; small branch IEW
  líða vb to move, go; pass, progress LRC
Icelandic: alin n.fem ell ASD
  al(n)bogi/olbogi/öl(n)bogi n.masc elbow ASD
  lim n.neut limb, branch (of tree) ASD
  limr n.masc limb, joint (of animal) ASD
Danish: albue n.masc/fem elbow ASD
  alen n.fem ell ASD
  led n link, joint LRC
Swedish: aln n.fem ell ASD
  led n joint LRC
Gothic: aleina n.fem ell ASD
  liþus n limb, body member LRC
Latin: ulna n.fem elbow W7
New Latin: ulna n.fem bone in forearm W7
Old Persian: arašn- n arshin AHD


Key to Part-of-Speech/Grammatical feature abbreviations:

Abbrev. Meaning
fem=feminine (gender)
masc=masculine (gender)
neut=neuter (gender)
str=strong (inflection)

Key to information Source codes (always with 'LRC' as editor):

Code Citation
AHD=Calvert Watkins: The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots, 2nd ed. (2000)
ASD=Joseph Bosworth and T. Northcote Toller: An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary (1898)
IEW=Julius Pokorny: Indogermanisches etymologisches Wörterbuch (1959)
LRC=Linguistics Research Center, University of Texas, Austin
W7=Webster's Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary (1963)

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