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Re: Weekly Vocab #1.1.4 (repost #1)

From:caeruleancentaur <caeruleancentaur@...>
Date:Monday, September 25, 2006, 12:56
> In, Lars Finsen <lars.finsen@...> wrote:
>> 2. ferret
>Hmm, don't have the necessary sources available right now. (What's >IE for ferret?)
The word "ferret" is used for two different animals. Originally, I believe, it was applied to a domesticated polecat, Mustela putorius, an Old World animal trained to hunt rats and rabbits. (The origin of "pole-" is unknown). Because of this animal's odor, the word "polecat" was also applied to the New World skunk. The word "ferret" has its origin in the Latin "fur," thief. The word was applied to the New World animal known as the black- footed ferret, Mustela nigripes, which is the one used as a pet. I assume that the "Conan" movies took place in Europe, so the presence of ferrets is not correct, rather like seeing Indian elephants in the old Tarzan movies. Pokorny gives several roots for weasel-type animals, the mustelids. (I use geminate consonants to indicate the velars.) kek = Wiesel, the common weasel (M. vulgaris); Iltis, polecat, fitchet (M. putorius) ker-, kker-, a color-root for dark, grayish colors > kkormen = Hermelin, stoat (synonym for ermine in its brown phase), ermine (M. ermineus); Wiesel ggheggh, ggegg = Iltis wer (Pokorny: in den sicher Zugehörigen mit redupl.) > werwer, wewer, wâwer, etc. = Eichhorn, squirrel; Iltis; Marder, pine marten (M. martes) bhel-, white > bhelewo-, Marder Those fluent in languages other than English can tell us what these PIE roots have become in their L1's. The translation of the animals' names is from "The New Cassell's German Dictionary" with binomials updated. Charlie


Lars Finsen <lars.finsen@...>
Herman Miller <hmiller@...>