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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: 2. ser-   'to serve, guard, protect, shelter'

Semantic Field: to Save, Preserve, Keep Safe


Indo-European Reflexes:

Family/Language Reflex(es) PoS/Gram. Gloss Source(s)
Old English: searu/searo n.fem art, skill; wile, deceit; arms, armor ASD
Middle English: conserven vb to conserve W7
  observen vb to observe W7
  preserven vb to preserve W7
  reserven vb to reserve W7
  servant n servant W7
  serven vb to serve W7
English: conserve vb.trans to preserve, keep in safe/sound state AHD/W7
  hero n legendary/mythological figure endowed with great strength/ability AHD/W7
  observe vb to conform one's action/practice to AHD/W7
  preserve vb to protect, keep safe from harm/injury/destruction AHD/W7
  reserve vb.trans to store for future/special use AHD/W7
  reservoir n place where something is stored AHD/W7
  Saradoc prop.n Merry's father in Tolkien: The Lord of the Rings LRC
  Saruman prop.n treacherous white wizard in Tolkien: The Lord of the Rings LRC
  servant n one who performs duties for others LRC
  serve vb to render service, be a servant LRC
Old High German: gi-sarwi/gi-sarwa n armor, equipment ASD
  saro n art, skill; wile, deceit; arms, armor ASD
Icelandic: sörvi n necklace; armor ASD
Gothic: sarwa n.neut art, skill; wile, deceit; arms, armor ASD
Latin: conservo, conservāre vb to guard, observe W7
  heros n.masc hero, demi-god W7
  observo, observare vb to guard, watch, observe W7
  reservo, reservāre vb to keep back W7
  serviō, servīre, servīvī, servītum vb to serve, be a slave LRC
  servitium, servitii n.neut servitude LRC
  servitus, servitutis n.fem servitude, slavery LRC
  servō, servāre, servāvī, servātum vb to guard, keep, watch LRC
  servus, servi n.masc slave, servant LRC
Late Latin: praeservo, praeservāre vb to observe beforehand W7
Medieval Latin: praeservō, praeservāre vb to guard, preserve W7
Old French: servir vb to serve W7
Middle French: conserver vb to conserve W7
  observer vb to observe W7
  préserver vb to preserve W7
  réserver vb to reserve, keep back W7
  réservoir n.masc reservoir W7
French: héros n hero TLL
Old Church Slavonic: xraniti, xranǫ, xraniši vb to guard, protect LRC
Greek: ʽήρως n.masc hero LRC
Avestan: haurvaiti vb to guard W7


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

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

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)
LRC=Linguistics Research Center, University of Texas, Austin
TLL=Frederick Bodmer: The Loom of Language (1944)
W7=Webster's Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary (1963)

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