Werewolf (was: Weekly Vocab #1.1.1 (repost #1))
|From:||R A Brown <ray@...>|
|Date:||Friday, September 15, 2006, 16:08|
Philip Newton wrote:
> On 9/5/06, Henrik Theiling <theiling@...> wrote:
>> Carsten Becker writes:
>> > >> 2. werewolf / lycanthrope of some variety
>> > ayvengaryo (lit. "wolf-man")
>> Interesting. Did you have a particular reason to decide to reverse
>> the typical order for compounding?
Typical? Doesn't it rather depend upon whether a language forms
head+attribute or attribute+head compounds?
>>All the languages in which I know
>> the word 'werewolf' compound it as 'man-wolf'.
> "Lycanthrope" is a counter-example :) (lykos, wolf; anthropos, human)
Yes, indeed. Greek _lykanthropos_ <-- lykos = wolf + anthropos = human
French has _loup-garou_ (plural: loups-garous) where the 'wolf' element
(loup) is clearly first. but _garou_ is, of course, not the French for
'man'; it is from Old French _garoul_ which is from Frankish (a Germanic
While Spanish has _hombre lobo_ (man wolf), it sister langs of Galician
& Portuguese put the 'wolf' first, thus: Galician: lobisón; Portuguese:
Italian _lupo mannaro_ also puts 'wolf' first (The etymology of
_mannaro_ is uncertain. Some derive it from a Germanic mann- (man);
others derive the phrase from an earlier *lup'umanario "humanish wolf").
Before someone asks, Latin merely has _uersipellis_ ("skin-changer") :)
Nid rhy hen neb i ddysgu.
There's none too old to learn.