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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.

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 and fonts spanning the Unicode 3 character set relevant to Indo-European languages. Versions of this page rendered in alternate character sets are available via links (see Unicode 2 and ISO-8859-1) in the left margin.

Pokorny Etymon: ghen-   'to grind, crack open, gnaw to pieces'

Semantic Fields: to Grind; to Open; to Bite


Indo-European Reflexes:

Family/Language Reflex(es) PoS/Gram. Gloss Source(s)
Old English: gnæt(t) n.masc gnat W7/ASD
  gnagan vb.str to gnaw RPN/ASD
  gnīdan vb to rub, pulverize RPN
  gnidel n pestle RPN
Middle English: gnacchen vb to gnash RPN
  gnāsten vb to gnash teeth RPN
  gnāstinge vb.ger gnashing RPN
  gnat n gnat W7
  gnawen vb to gnaw W7
English: gnat n small two-winged fly AHD/W7
  (g)natter vb.dial to fret, grumble AHD/OED
  gnaw vb to bite/chew with teeth AHD/W7
  nag vb to complain, find fault constantly AHD/W7
  nosh n snack, light meal AHD
  nosh vb to eat snack/light meal AHD
East Frisian: gnīsen/knīsen vb to gnash teeth RPN
Old Saxon: gnagan vb to gnaw RPN
Old High German: (g)nagan/ginagan vb to gnaw RPN/ASD
  gnītan vb to rub, break ASD
German: nagen vb to gnaw LRC
Old Norse: gnaga vb to gnaw W7
  gnýr n.masc clash, din LRC
Old Icelandic: gnaga vb to gnaw RPN
  gnastan n a gnashing RPN
  gniða vb to rub, scrape RPN
  gníst n a gnashing RPN
  gnísta vb to gnash teeth, snarl RPN
  gnístan n gnashing of teeth RPN
  gnúa vb to rub RPN
Icelandic: (g)naga vb to gnaw ASD
Old Danish: gnistre vb to grate RPN
Danish: gnide vb to rub, break ASD
Swedish: gnaga vb to gnaw RPN
  gnissla vb to grate RPN
  gnō vb to rub RPN
Greek: χναῦμα n slice, tidbit RPN
  χναύω vb to nibble RPN
  χνίει vb to break/crush into small pieces RPN
Avestan: aiwi-γnixta- adj gnawed, nibbled, eaten RPN


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

Abbrev. Meaning
masc=masculine (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)
LRC=Linguistics Research Center, University of Texas, Austin
OED=James A.H. Murray et al: The Oxford English Dictionary (1933)
RPN=Allan R. Bomhard: Reconstructing Proto-Nostratic (2002)
W7=Webster's Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary (1963)

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