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Re: Dutch surnames (scatological warning!)

From:caeruleancentaur <caeruleancentaur@...>
Date:Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 2:23
--- In, "Paul Schleitwiler, FCM" <pjschleitwilerfcm@...> wrote:
> > If you look at a crowbar, you will notice the cloven end resembles > a 'cow foot', which is probably how it came to be called so in some > languages. The version 'Koevoets' as a family name may be a dialect > variation. However, according to Answers dot com, 'koevoet' is a > Nederlands term for 'crowbar'. One of the French terms is 'doe > foot'.
This is from the Wikipedia article 'crowbar': "The term refers to a cow's foot. In Danish a cow is a kue. In Norwegian a cow is a ku. In Swedish a cow is called a ko and is pronounced "coo" like a dove sounds. And a crowbar today in Swedish is a kofot….a "cow's foot." And one must mention that the bar's pulling end [two fingers around a nail] resemble a cow's foot and thus the English derivation of crowbar has nothing to do at all with the crow, but with cows or a ko. Our crowbar is named after a cow's foot. This is the true etymology of the word." As far as I can tell the author hasn't explained the etymology of the English word 'crowbar' at all! To say that 'crowbar' is named after a cow's foot means that an "epenthetic" <r> has to be explained. BTW, the AHD does link the word to "crow," supposedly because the fork at the end of the tool resembles a bird's foot! I would see a cloven hoof long before I saw a three-toed bird's foot. Charlie