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INVESTIGATION OF THE ORIGIN OF THE OLD NORSE

OR ICELANDIC LANGUAGE
AMSTERDAM CLASSICS IN LINGUISTICS, 1800 1925
AMSTERDAM STUDIES IN THE THEORY AND HISTORY
OF LINGUISTIC SCIENCE Series I

General Editor
E.F.K. KOERNER
Zentrum fr Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft, Typologie
und Universalienforschung, Berlin
efk.koerner@rz.hu-berlin.de

Amsterdam Classics in Linguistics has been established to provide the student of language
sciences with significant original sources constituting the capital of ideas on which modern
linguists have built. The series offers new editions of important though nowadays often
inaccessible 19th and early 20th century works, together with introductions by present-day
specialists in the field in which these studies are placed within their historical context and their
relevance for contemporary linguistic pursuits is shown.
A complete list of titles in this series can be found on http://benjamins.com/catalog/acil

Advisory Editorial Board


John Considine (Edmonton, Alberta)
Sheila Embleton (Toronto)
Kurt R. Jankowsky (Washington, D.C.)
Brian D. Joseph (Columbus, Ohio)
John E. Joseph (Edinburgh)
Joseph C. Salmons (Madison, Wisconsin)
Klaas Willems (Ghent)

Volume 18

Rasmus Rask (17871832)

Investigation of the Origin of the Old Norse or Icelandic Language


RASMUS RASK

INVESTIGATION OF THE ORIGIN


OF THE OLD NORSE
OR ICELANDIC LANGUAGE

New edition
of the 1993 English translation by
NIELS EGE

With an introduction by

FRANS GREGERSEN
University of Copenhagen

JOHN BENJAMINS PUBLISHING COMPANY


AMSTERDAM/PHILADELPHIA
4-
The paper used in this publication meets the minimum requirements of
the American National Standard for Information Sciences Permanence
of Paper for Printed Library Materials, ansi z39.48-1984.

Previously published as volume XXVI of the Travaux du Cercle Linguistique de


Copenhague, 1993, The Linguistic Circle of Copenhagen, with financial support
by the Carlsberg Foundation.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Rask, Rasmus, 1787-1832.


[Undersgelse om det gamle nordiske eller islandske sprogs oprindelse. English]
Investigation of the origin of the Old Norse or Icelandic Language : New edition of the 1993 English
translation/ Rasmus Kristian Rask ; by Niels Ege ; With an introduction by Frans Gregersen,
University of Copenhagen. -- New edition of the 1993 English translation.
p. cm. (Amsterdam studies in the theory and history of linguistic science. Series I, Amsterdam
Classics in Linguistics, 18001925, issn 0304-0712 ; v. 18)
Includes bibliographical references and index.
1. Old Norse language--History. 2. Gothic language--History. I. Ege, Niels, translator. II. Title.
P25.L56 vol. 26
[PD2225]
439.609--dc23 2013007938
isbn 978 90 272 0881 1 (Hb ; alk. paper)
isbn 978 90 272 7198 3 (Eb)

2013 John Benjamins B.V.


No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, by print, photoprint, microfilm, or any
other means, without written permission from the publisher.
John Benjamins Publishing Co. P.O. Box 36224 1020 ME Amsterdam The Netherlands
John Benjamins North America P.O. Box 27519 Philadelphia PA 19118-0519 USA
Table of contents

Editors Foreword & Acknowledgments *vii


Portrait of Rasmus Rask *viii
Note on the origin of Rasmus Rasks portrait *ix
Editors Introduction *xi
Bibliographical References *xlii
A. Works by Rasmus Rask *xlii
B. Secondary Sources *xliii

Translators Note *xlix

RASMUS RASK
Investigation on the Origin of the Old Norse or Icelandic Language
Preface i
Investigation on the Origin of the Old Norse or Icelandic Language 1
Foreword & Acknowledgments

The Niels Ege translation of Rasmus Rasks prize essay (1818) originally appeared
in 1993 as volume 26 of the Travaux du Cercle Linguistique de Copenhague. The
publishing house of the Travaux was the illustrious C. A. Reitzel, then owned
by the enthusiast Sven Olufsen who however went insolvent in 2008. The books
Olufsen held in commission for the Copenhagen Linguistic Circle, i.e., the
remaining volumes of the series, not only went out of print but were for the
most part destroyed in the chaotic period following the bankruptcy. However,
the Circle and its series editor Una Canger managed to salvage enough copies of
Eges translation to be in a position to offer one of them to the publishing house
of John Benjamins for photographic reprint. The original files for the translation
had been prepared most judiciously during an extended period of repeated turns
of proof reading by Niels Ege and Una Canger, so that they would be as close
to perfect as humanly possible. For that reason it would have been an immense
waste of effort to do anything but reproduce photographically the original edition
of the translation. Together with a new, much fuller introduction it now appears
as volume 18 of the Amsterdam Classics in Linguistics series.
I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to the
daughters of the late Niels Ege, Majken, Tina and Hannah, as well as the
Linguistic Circle of Copenhagen, in particular its president Kasper Boye, for
permission to reprint the translation. For his unstinting support throughout the
production of the new materials for the present re-edition, I am grateful to E.F.K.
Koerner, editor of the series where it rightfully belongs. I wish to thank Una
Canger for her unwavering support of this project and Jens Ege, brother of the
late Niels Ege, for placing at my disposal the text of his speech delivered at Niels
Eges funeral. Many of the biographical details in the section on the translator
have been taken from this text.
I am also very grateful to two anonymous referees for numerous
suggestions of improvements of style which have all been accepted. Their and the
editors request for additional information, I have tried to meet. All shortcomings
will remain my responsibility.

Copenhagen, 1 December 2012 F.G


Note

The portrait of Rask was drawn by David Monies (18121894). The engraving
is found in the Beretning om Gravmlet over Prof. R. Rask [Report on the
monument for Prof. R. Rask] ed. by Konrad Gislason, Martin Hammerich &
Peder Goth Thorsen (Kjbenhavn: Bianco Luno, 1842). The illustration here
has been taken from the inside cover of this booklet issued by the committee.
The portrait of Rask reproduced in Thomas L. Markeys re-edition of the
English translation by Sir George Webbe Dasent (1843) of Rasks own Swedish
Anvisning till Islndskan eller Nordiska Fornsprket of 1818 constitutes a
reproduction of the same portrait but it has a signature added which Rask
himself never used, viz. Rasmus Christian Rask. (Rask had dropped his
original middle name for both orthographic and religious reasons.)
Monies introduced a number of corrections of detail according to the
memory of those who could still remember Rask in 1842, but otherwise
based his engraving on the only other existing portrait of Rask. This was
published in his and his Swedish friend Arvid Augustus Afzeliuss (17851871)
edition of the so-called Older Edda, Edda Smundar hinns froa. Collectio
carminum veterum scaldorum Saemundiana dicta. Quam, ex codicibus
pergamenis chartaceisque cum notis et lectionibus variorum, ex recensione
ERASMI CHRISTIANI RASK curavit ARV. AUG. AFZELIUS (Holmiae: Typis
Elmenianis, 1818). The 1818 portrait is reproduced in Rasks Selected Writings
of 1932, vol.I. One of the significant differences between the 1818 and the 1842
portraits is that in 1818 Rask is pictured in typical peasant clothes, whereas he
is dressed like a gentleman professor in the 1842 version.
Introduction to the New Edition
of Niels Eges 1993 Translation
of Rasmus Rasks Prize Essay of 1818*

1. Introduction

This edition constitutes a photographic reprint of the English edition of Ras-


mus Rasks prize essay of 1818 which appeared as volume XXVI in the Travaux
du Cercle Linguistique de Copenhague in 1993. The only difference, besides the
new front matter, is the present introduction, which serves to introduce the
author Rasmus Rask, the man and his career, and to contextualize his famous
work. It also serves to introduce the translation and the translator, Niels Ege
(19272003).
The prize essay was published in Danish in 1818. In contrast to other works
by Rask, notably his introduction to the study of Icelandic (on which, see further
below), it was never reissued until Louis Hjelmslev (18991965) published a
corrected version in Danish as part of his edition of Rasks selected works (Rask
1932). It was thus rare, but not impossible, to find, and certainly very expensive
to buy, until Roy Harris included a photographic reprint of the original 1818 edi-
tion in his 13-volume Routledge series Foundations of Indo-European Compara-
tive Philology 18001850, where it makes up volume 2 (Rask 1999). Thus there
are now two Danish editions readily available to the public, the original and the
corrected edition (Rask 1932). The present work is, however, the only translation
of the work into English and indeed into any other language.
During Rasks lifetime the sections on the so-called Thracian language fam-
ily were translated into German as part of Johann Severin Vaters (17721826)
Vergleichungsstafeln (Vater 1822; cf. Koerner 1976), and there is a summary of

* I most gratefully acknowledge the stylistic corrections suggested to me by Professor John


Considine (University of Alberta), all of which I have found to be improvements of my nar-
rative. I also take this opportunity to express my heartfelt thanks to Konrad Koerner for his
constant support and frequent suggestions for revisions, all of which have prompted me to
rethink my argument. The remaining shortcomings are my own.
*xii Editors Introduction

it in Danish in the first edition of the Royal Danish Academys Oversigt (i.e.,
summary of proceedings), rsted 18131815. For readers of German it is in-
teresting to note that the 1932 corrected edition features a parallel German ap-
paratus and a translation of the introduction as a separate work. The work itself,
however, is still in Danish.
The reason for this strange state of affairs seems to be that Jacob Grimm
(17851863) made the results of the prize essay available to a linguistic commu-
nity generally unable to read Danish (obviously, he himself was) as an integrated
part of his second edition of his German grammar (Grimm 1822); and due to
the rapid development of Indo-European comparative philology in the early 19th
century, the substantial results of the prize essay, notably the contributions to the
delimitation of the Indo-European family and the specific letter correspondences
governing the relationships between Germanic and Greek and Latin, were soon
considered common knowledge (the latter under the name of Grimms Law), or
even out of date since Sanskrit had not been taken sufficiently into account.
That might again make readers wonder whether publishing the reprint and
the translation is a service only to historians of linguistics. Of course, it is a
service to historians of linguistics to make a classic text available in the only
language which the majority of historians feel at ease with. And it is to be hoped
that the burgeoning field of the history of linguistics will thereby receive a new
impetus to scrutinize the early beginnings of Indo-European scholarship. But,
just as importantly, the translation of this work of genius reveals that even if de-
tails in the substantial treatment of the various branches of language have now
been superseded, the theoretical parts of the book, notably the introduction and
the first chapter, are still worth reading by all linguists for their own sake.

2. Rasmus Rask, the man and his career

2.1 Early years


Rasmus Rask, or to use the earliest form of his name, Rasmus Christian Rasch,
was born in a small village called Brndekilde on Funen, one of the Danish
islands, on 22 November, 1787.
Rasks father was not a farmer, but a village tailor, and he earned his living
also by being a wise man which at that time may best be characterized as a healer
and a barefoot doctor rolled into one. He educated his son himself until Rasmus
was sent to grammar school in Odense at the age of thirteen, either in April 1801
(Petersen 1834: 2) or on 3 June 1801 (Diderichsen 1960: 28, with reference to
Rnning 1887: 4, based on the school protocol). Here he was fortunate enough
Editors Introduction *xiii

two years later to experience a breakthrough of a new pedagogy and new regu-
lations which replaced a fundamentally medieval tradition of grammar-school
teaching in Denmark. The new order was at the beginning only established in
Trondheim, Copenhagen, and Odense since it was considerably more costly (cf.
Paludan 1885: 7879, and Henrichsen 1861, where the content of the reform
is outlined). It is an accident, but an extremely lucky one, that Rask was able
to transfer in 1802 to the new type of school which in Odense was apparently
blessed with an extremely well-qualified faculty, many of whom were soon pro-
moted, some to the university (Diderichsen 1960: 2829 and elsewhere).
Diderichsen 1960 demonstrates in detail how much Rask owed to his school
days at Odense precisely because the reform had as its explicit goal to further
independent thinking. This was ideal for Rask (Bjerrum 1959: 1718) and it
is interesting to see that one of his most important teachers, the mathemati-
cian Carl Ferdinand Degen (17661825),1 characterizes him as among the most
gifted in these words:
Talent for application of already acquired knowledge, that is a practical genius,
and for applying them in a new way, that is a heuristic genius, I think I have detect-
ed with R. R does show an aptitude for independent judgment and reasoning.2
(Degen in the school protocol 31 March 1803, after Diderichsen 1960: 20)

Diderichsen has also documented that the philologist S.N.J. Bloch (17721862)
who was Rasks teacher of Greek, profoundly influenced his general linguistic
outlook, and his grammatical apparatus in particular (see Diderichsen 1960:
3339). Yet, Bloch praises precisely Rasks independent mind:
And he is not one of those numerous individuals who without any further
investigation takes for granted all that his teacher says; oftentimes he will make
good, well founded, even very fine protests and counter suggestions.3 (Bloch in
the school protocol of October 1803; after Diderichsen 1960: 32)

It was while still in school that Rask found his unique object of study, Old Norse.
It is certainly true that there was an interest in matters Icelandic among his

1. On Degens own attempts to create a new etymological method cf. Karlsson et al 2000: 158.

2. Talent til at anvende allerede erhvervede Kundskaber, altsaa et praktisk Genie, og til at an-
vende dem paa en ny Maade, altsaa et heuristisk Genie, troer jeg at have sporet hos R. [] R.
viser altsaa Anlg til at dmme og slutte selv. (Unless otherwise noted, all translations from
Danish originals are the present authors own: F.G.)

3. Og er han ikke af den store Hob, der uden videre Undersgelse tager for fuldt alt hvad
Lreren siger. Idelig gjr han mig gode, velgrundede, ofte endog meget fine Anmrkninger
og Indvendinger.
*xiv Editors Introduction

contemporaries but the lack of knowledge of Icelandic, the language of the sagas,
was almost total. So, Rask had to start by himself. He had already begun study-
ing Icelandic early in 1804 (Diderichsen 1960: 30) but in March 1805 he had, as
a tribute to his diligence, been awarded the Schning edition of Snorris Heim-
skringla, more specifically the three parts which had appeared by then bound
in one volume (Diderichsen 1960: 30; Petersen 1834: 4-5; Letters I: 298). In his
biography of Rask, his schoolmate, and later the first professor of the Nordic lan-
guages in Denmark, Niels Matthias Petersen (17911862), details the method
invented for this purpose (Petersen 1834: 56):
The only means which Rask had at his disposal for the study of this language [i.e.
Old Norse] was Heimskringla itself, the text with the translations [into Danish
and Latin]; while reading it he would extract, using the same method which he
applied in his many linguistic studies later, the morphological structure [Dan.
Formlre] of the language by scrutinizing the various contexts in which each
word occurred. With a language as difficult as the Old Norse it would have been
thought impossible for anyone else his age. The difficulties were multiplied con-
siderably by the uncritical treatment of the text (which in later years he would
often elaborate on privatissime for me) since not only was the same word not
written in the same way, the very grammatical forms were confused. It was thus
a hard and tedious job by repeated comparisons to discover which form was the
right one. He proceeded in the following way: he wrote down each form of the
word as it occurred in the text in his notebook and quoted the passage where
it was found, compared when he found it repeated and thus carried on until
finally a number of nouns, pronouns and verbs etc. were completed. This was
continued until as many paradigms were laid out as were necessary to complete
the system; then began the ordering of declensional classes and finally a com-
plete make-over after an ordered plan.4

4. Den eneste Hjlp, som Rask havde til at studere dette Sprog, var Heimskringla selv, Tek-
sten med Oversttelserne; under Lsningen uddrog han, p samme Mde, som i sine mange
senere Sproggranskninger, Sprogets Formlre ved at betragte de forskjellige Forbindelser, i
hvilke hvert Ord forekom; ved et s vanskeligt Sprog som det islandske, mtte det for enhver
anden p hans Alder tykkes en Umulighed. Vanskeligheden forgedes meget ved den ukrit-
tiske Behandling af Teksten (hvilken han i senere r oftere privatissime har udviklet mig), da
ikke blot det selvsamme Ord ikke var skrevet p samme Mde, men selve de grammatikalske
Former vare forvirrede; det var derfor et mjsommeligt Arbejde, ved gjentagen Sammenlig-
ning endelig at udfinde, hvilken Form der var den rette. Hans Fremgangsmde dermed var
flgende: han optegnede hver enkelt Ordform efterhnden som den forekom p sit Sted i
sit Hfte, og siterede hvor den fandtes, sammenlignede, nr den kom igjen, og blev sledes
ved, indtil enkelte Navneord, Stedord, Gjerningsord, o.s.v. stode opstillede fuldstndig; dette
fortsattes s lnge, indtil s mange Paradigmata vare forhnden, at der kunde granskes over
det hele System, hvorefter Deklinatsioner, o.s.v. skulde ordnes; da begyndte en Omarbejdelse
efter ordnet Plan.
Editors Introduction *xv

In a biographical letter to his Swedish friend Anders Jacob Danielsson Cnat-


tingius (17921864), Rask complains that it was impossible for him to obtain
any dictionary or grammar, but this is part of the solution to the riddle of how
he was able to break new ground: he started from scratch by making his own.
The work invested during his school years was to remain the basic capital
for his work with Icelandic and Old Norse and it was to place him as the only
linguist in his time who really understood virtually every word in the old texts.
While in Odense, Rask made the acquaintance of Johan von Blow (1751
1828), a gentleman of means who had been close to the king until he was relieved
of his duties in 1793. Blow had retired to his manor house, Sanderumgaard on
Funen, and had started to use his considerable fortune to support all kinds of
scholarly activities. He seems to have had a penchant for Nordic history and
prehistory. Blow was to remain a central source of support for Rask at the be-
ginning of his career, and Rask wrote numerous letters to him, partly as reports
on how work that had already been supported was progressing, partly as more
or less poorly disguised applications for money for new projects. Rask seems
to have been quite candid in his letters to Blow about his reliance on him as
his only benefactor until he was later supported by public funds (i.e., the royal
treasury) and indeed considered him a paternal friend in whom to confide his
deepest desires.
Rask remained in the Odense school until late in 1807. As an incident in
the pan-European Napoleonic wars, Copenhagen was bombed by the British in
early September 1807, and the war was not over until October 1807, when Rask
was to be sent by the school to the University of Copenhagen as soon as circum-
stances allow it (Diderichsen 1960: 28). He was enrolled to study theology, the
only humanistic study which could lead to any job at the time.
Rask was soon given a (free) room at the Regensen, the royal college in the
centre of Copenhagen, close to the university, and a job at the university library
assisting the Professor of Literary History (and provost of the Regensen) Rasmus
Nyerup (17591829), who was to remain a close friend and colleague, playing a
significant role in his life until the end.
The first book that Rasmus Rask published was on Icelandic. It was called
Vejledning til det Islandske eller gamle nordiske Sprog (A guide to the Icelandic or
old Nordic language) (1811), a title which clearly showed that for Rask the con-
temporary Icelandic language was either identical to the Old Norse or so closely
related to it as to be for all research purposes identical. He changed his mind on
this issue in the second Danish edition of the book (1832), cf. the preface where
he notes that in the original work the old and common Nordic language is not
as clearly differentiated from the new Icelandic language as it probably should
have been in order to be used for deeper studies of language [i.e. for comparative
*xvi Editors Introduction

historical purposes].5 The book was translated by its author into Swedish and
considerably enlarged (1818) and this enlarged edition minus the authors pref-
ace was translated into English by Sir George Webbe Dasent (18171896). That
edition has been reprinted photographically as no. 2 of Amsterdam Classics in
Linguistics with an introduction by Thomas L. Markey which partly also cov-
ers the prize essay and its importance (Markey 1976: xxvi-xxix). This volume
also includes valuable bibliographical information on manuscripts and works on
Rask to which I hereby refer the reader of the present work. The bibliographical
details may, however, now be supplemented by direct searches via the web in the
collections of the Danish Royal Library at www.kb.dk using Rask as the author
entry, since the various Rask manuscripts are now included in the searchable
catalogue.

2.2 To Iceland
Rask not only wanted to study the Icelandic language in manuscripts; he wanted
to actually go to Iceland to see for himself the places where all the events he had
read about had taken place and to learn the language to perfection. First, how-
ever, he got the chance to go to Sweden and Norway with Nyerup. The travels
were dressed up as scientific but also had the secret objective of espionage which
Rask naively betrayed to Blow (Letters I: 109; 116). The voyage occurred at the
time when Napoleon was about to invade Russia and there were tensions along
the borders. But as it happened Rask met individuals in Stockholm (notably
Arvid August Afzelius (17851871)), in Uppsala and in Norway, who were later
to be of importance in his work on Icelandic.
Rask had mentioned his intention to go to Iceland already in a very personal
and frank letter to Blow about his future position and scientific plans (Letters
I: 106-115 at 112), and had thus indirectly sought Blows support. He now re-
ceived support to finish his prize essay, not only from Blow but also from the in-
fluential Norwegian businessman Jacob Aall (17731844) (Letters I: 157), and an
Icelander offered him free passage to Iceland. Finally, he had in fact also received
the support of the Board of the University (commentary in Letters III,1: 62).
While he was in Iceland Rask finished the prize essay and sent the manu-
script down to the Royal Academy in Copenhagen (Letters I: 172). In a long
letter of 4 July 1814 to his former professor of theology Peter Erasmus Mller
(17761834), Rask does everything he can to downplay expectations about the

5. [H]vor [...] den gamle og almennordiske Sprogform ikke er s tydelig adskilt fra den ny
islandske, som den vel burde vret, for med sikkerhed at kunne anvendes i dybere Sprogun-
dersgelser
Editors Introduction *xvii

quality of the manuscript: he was forced to work in the only room in the house
(i.e. surrounded by a lot of people and unable to lay out his books) and he makes
many excuses about the style of his work, while insisting so much the more on
its valuable content. The prize essay must have been underway for quite some
time for it was only received at the Academy on 2 December 1814 (Lomborg
1960: 481).
Rask was deeply surprised by the poverty he found where the events de-
scribed in the sagas had once taken place; but he was even more impressed by
the natural scenery and the people he met on the island. In letters he boasted
that he was actually taken for an Icelander, so well had he learnt to speak the lan-
guage, and he gave vivid descriptions of the geysirs in whose immediate vicinity
he had been camping together with a friend.
The importance of Rasks visit to Iceland lies in the fact that he acquainted
himself thoroughly with Icelandic through hunting down the individuals who
spoke the language to perfection (he complains about Reykjavik being infected
by Danish). He writes in English in a letter to an unknown recipient that
This most valuable remainder of Gothic Antiquity, and almost the only one pre-
served in Iceland, is certainly the ancient general language of all the kingdoms
of the North; which is still spoken throughout that Island to a truly astonish-
ing degree of purity and elegance. This I may pretend to ascertain; for having
travelled through the kingdoms of Denmark, Sweden and parts of Norway in
order to study the languages and the philological antiquities of the North, I have
now spent these two years in travelling around the island of Iceland to inquire
into the present state of that remarkable language, and in every corner of the
country I have been able to converse with the natives in the antient [sic] Scan-
dinavian tongue and I have found them reading still the old sagas of the heroic
age. (Letters I: 183)

Rask had thus entered into close friendships with a number of Icelanders who
were active in preserving the islands cultural heritage. This was the golden age
of learned societies. They would produce the critical editions needed for the ad-
vancement of knowledge and they would form the material basis of production
by securing enough subscriptions. In picturing the lonely genius in his study,
it is often overlooked that Rasmus Rask was an expert at doing such organiza-
tional work. He virtually created the two societies that were to become central in
promoting scholarship on Icelandic (cf. commentary in Letters III,1: 66f): Hi
slenzka Bkmenntafjelag and the Nordisk Oldskriftselskab. He served as the
chairman of both.
Back from Iceland Rask had formed another plan. He wanted to get the prize
essay published and he also wanted to work further along the lines suggested in
*xviii Editors Introduction

it, but most of all, and all through his life, he wanted a job that would enable
him to establish his own household and let him work solely on the issues he
was concerned with. Thus, the perennial problem for Rask was how to navigate
strategically in order to make himself attractive as a candidate for a professorship
for the powers that be, while still producing scholarly publications. The problem
was in principle unsolvable. If he did not produce any scholarly work, he would
not get a position because he would be considered finished as a scholar. If he did
publish, he would risk, in the eyes of the authorities, seeming not to be in need
of a permanent position at all.

2.3 The great voyage to South Asia 18161823


One way to finance a scholarly career was then, as it is now, to apply for money
for projects that only one promising individual could carry out. Rasks great
voyage to the South Asia was one such project. It started out as a trip to Stock-
holm but this was to mark the beginning of a huge and long-lasting journey,
which I shall not detail here since it is less important in this connection. The
start, however, had obvious consequences both for Rasks life and for his repu-
tation; and Rasks peculiar way of travelling and his reasons for doing so are
both of immediate concern here.
Once Rask was back from Iceland he had written a report to the Board of the
University of Copenhagen in November 1815, asking for a position. He received
no answer. He then wrote to the Board again in July 1816 asking, first, for leave
from his post as assistant university librarian and, second, asking whether on his
return from a long journey financed by a private maecenas (i.e., Johan v. Blow),
he could expect to be affiliated with the university. He originally planned to rely
solely on Blows money (Letters I: 192 and commentary ad loc.) and to go to the
Caucasus via Stockholm and St. Petersburg. In answer to his letter the Board actu-
ally granted him a raise of 200 Rigsbankdaler (but made no promises as to a future
affiliation). Immediately before his departure Rask also applied for money from
the royal funds ad usos publicos to finance the printing of the prize essay (Letters II:
292). Rask sailed to Stockholm on 25 October 1816 (cf. Letters III.1: 74).
Once he was in Stockholm, however, Rask found being there so agreeable,
and he met so much enthusiasm for his person and his plans that he actually
wanted to stay there. At that time, the nation states of Sweden and Denmark were
not on good terms, and it was seen as close to treason that a man of his standing,
who had after all been supported repeatedly by the Danish King, would even
consider accepting a position in Stockholm. The facts were these. Rask had ac-
cepted to help the above mentioned Afzelius produce editions of both the Snorra
Edda and the Smundar Edda (Rask 19321935, bibliography, items 25 and 26).
Editors Introduction *xix

He produced an enlarged Swedish translation of his own guide to Icelandic, the


Vejledning (Rask 1818a) and the next year a reader of Old Norse. In short, in two
years he produced a complete apparatus to renew the study of the Old Icelandic
language and was thus able to finish most of the works he had wanted to work
on in Denmark yet it was all published in Stockholm.
When Rask approached the recently elected member of the Royal Danish
Academy Professor P. E. Mller, a central person in Rasks life, on behalf of a cer-
tain printing agent named Scheutz who wanted to produce an edition of Johan
Ihres (17071780) Glossarium Suiogothicum (Ihre 1769) which would take ad-
vantage of the learned Icelander John Olafsens (17311811) supplements (with
which Rask was very familiar, having spent much of his time in Copenhagen
with the late Olafsen), the Royal Academy responded with unprecedented haste
and no intention to hide its hostility:
At the present point in time it would more than ever appear inappropriate that
Danes should contribute to making Icelandic books and works by Icelandic au-
thors publicly available in Sweden. When Mr. Rask wishes to publish the text
of the prose Edda in Stockholm at a time when in Denmark both public and
private efforts are made to publish in a worthy manner those monuments which
are the pride of the North and the property of Denmark, this private indiscre-
tion may hardly be forgiven this in other respects brilliant young mans scien-
tific entrepreneurship; but if the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences were to
embark upon a similar thoughtless course, it would in all likelihood arouse the
public critique of learned men and possibly even make His Majesty the King,
the Royal protector of the Academy, very dissatisfied with the Society indeed.6
(Lomborg 1960: 211)

The rebuke to which Rask was subjected is somewhat mollified when the text
subsequently suggests that Rask be given the assignment of publishing the Olaf-
sen supplement to Ihres Glossarium if he remains in Denmark, a job worth an
estimated 200 Rigsbankdaler a year (ibid: 212). The plan was later to be renewed
when the Academy in March 1824, at the suggestion of Mller, granted Rask the

6. I nrvrende Tidspunct kunde det mere end nogensinde synes upassende, at Danske
vilde bidrage til at Islandske Skrifter og Islnderes Arbeider udkom i Sverrig. Naar Hr. Rask
i Stokholm udgiver den prosaiske Eddas Text, paa samme Tid, da man i Danmark med of-
fentlig og privat Anstrngelse strber vrdigen at publicere de Monumenter, som ere Nor-
dens Stolthed og Danmarks Ejendom, saa kan denne private Indiscretion neppe nok tilgives
den ivrigt udmrkede unge Mands videnskabelige Nidkirhed; men dersom Det Kongelige
Danske Videnskabernes Selskab begik en lignende Ubetnksomhed, saa vilde denne vist op-
vkke Kyndiges offentlige Uvillie, og muligen endog paadrage det Hs. Majestt Kongens,
Selskabets ophjede Velgirers, allerhjeste Mishag.
*xx Editors Introduction

sum of 200 Rigsbankdaler annually for three years to produce an Etymologicum


Danicum. Rasks manuscript has survived (ibid: 214-215).
There is no doubt that Rask had found a wonderful environment in
Stockholm, and even enthusiasm for his program of work, but still he had only
got the money from Blow for the purpose of going to Russia and later to In-
dia and Ceylon. The prospect of a permanent position in Sweden lurked on the
horizon and that was what set the whole train in motion. The following section
follows the original interpretation by Hjelmslev (1933) as modified and refined
in Bjerrum (1957).
Suspecting that Rask would accept a permanent Swedish position, Mller
writes in May 1817, that if that were the case, he would consider Rask devoid of
any love of his country, and even a traitor to the cause of the nation (Letters I:
232). He asks rhetorically what help Rask had enjoyed from his country and an-
swers by listing all the support he had had from the King (thereby inadvertently
stressing the contrast between himself, a son of the ruling classes with no need
of support, and Rask, the son of a peasant from Funen). Rask answers him in
the same letter in which he presented the Swedish plans for a re-edition of Ihre
(Letters I: 237242). He details his plans for scholarly work and repeats that he
has had no promise of any affiliation to the university in Copenhagen. Further-
more: It is true that my country has partly made it possible for me to acquire
my scholarly learning but it is equally true that it has never cared for any use of
it (p. 239).7 The letter is a sort of literary testament and an eloquent defense, but
as such it bears strong witness to how Rask perceived his gloomy prospects in
Denmark.
From the perspective of history he was certainly right. Like all other genius-
es, Rask was so much ahead of his time that even though his contemporaries had
much veneration for his immense breadth and depth of knowledge and respect
for his will power, they were not able to treat him as an exception. They simply
could not secure his material circumstances so that his immense capacity could
be brought to its full bloom. He was forced to be what he was not patient! No
one was more aware of this predicament than P. E. Mller (cf. Mller 1833: 29).
Rask had a plan which he had presented to Blow. He had asked for per-
mission to leave Denmark, requesting leave of absence from his position at the
university library, and he had even got a small allowance as a contribution to-
wards covering his travel expenses. However, the money from Blow was not
sufficient, and Mller knew that. When the prize essay had finally appeared,

7. Det er sandt at Fdrenelandet har tildels sat mig istand til at erhverve mine Kundskaber;
men det er ogsaa sant at det har aldrig brudt sig om at benytte dem. The use of the old (and
modern-day Icelandic) word order in the dependent clause is significant.
Editors Introduction *xxi

Mller went to the King to present him with his especially dedicated copy. This
was immediately before the end of 1817 because I [Mller] knew that the
travel scholarships were to be handed out soon (Letters I: 293) and he did in
fact obtain a promise of support. From now on, everything went surprisingly
smoothly: Rask was granted money from the King for the voyage (see Letters I:
293-294 and commentary ad loc.); and the very letters to document the renewed
support for 1819 were sent in transcription to Rask while he was in St. Peters-
burg in cover letters from Mller (Letters I: 408-413). Rask was en voyage. The
journey would take him to Persia, India and Ceylon and would allow him to buy
a collection of manuscripts for the Royal Library in Copenhagen unmatched by
any other collection in Europe.
The manuscripts that Rasmus Rask brought home with him were first listed
in volume 3 of his collected works edited by his half brother H. K. Rask (the list
was also published separately in 1838). They have recently been the subject of
scholarly treatment in a complete catalogue (Buescher 2011). As for Rasks own
manuscripts, the reader is referred to the complete inventory in Letters III.2:
515-593.
Rasmus Rask had a peculiar way to travel. Everywhere he went he sought
the acquaintance of men who have studied the local language, or indeed any
language, struck up a linguistic friendship in order to borrow the materials they
have available so as to be able to broaden his own linguistic horizon, and offered
his own materials in return. In this way his travels became a truly linguistic
expedition, much to the chagrin of his audience at home who had expected co-
lourful and vivid descriptions of exotic sights. N.C.L. Abrahams, a somewhat
younger and more successful contemporary, says in his memoirs that he and a
number of other young friends were invited to Nyerups place immediately after
Rasks return, but did not get anything out of the traveler except a story about
how he had once ridden an elephant (Abrahams 1876: 179-180).
To travel in his study so to speak, was Rasks inventive way to make the best
out of a very complicated and potentially life-threatening ordeal. He had not at
all wanted to go to India himself. What he wanted was to have at his disposal
materials akin to the saga manuscripts on which he could base an analysis of
the Eastern languages, notably Sanskrit. When in September 1818 he learned
in a letter from Nyerup (Letters I: 337-338) that the Danish medical doctor and
botanist Nathanael Wulff Wallich (17851854) had presented the Copenha-
gen University Library with all that has been printed in later years in Calcutta
and Serampore, among which no less than 3 different Sanskrit grammars and a
*xxii Editors Introduction

Sanskrit dictionary,8 he wrote to Mller from St. Petersburg suggesting that he


should return home (Letters I: 347-349, esp. 348). He states that he has acquired
Wilkins Sanskrit grammar of 1808 and that he has access to more materials
here in Russia than would be possible anywhere else, except England and India.
Furthermore, he describes how he has been working day and night on a Sanskrit
grammar after a new plan so that it is comparable to his Icelandic and Anglo-
Saxon grammars. He finally suggests that he could go back to Copenhagen and
use the Wallich donation and what he already has at his disposal to produce a
Sanskrit grammar and reader. Having finished that, he could, he suggests, take
the sea route back to India in 1819 or 1820 in order to study Pali and the Vedas
and to get hold of the Buddhists books (ibid., p. 349). In a letter of 12 October,
Rask pushes Mller for an answer to his suggestion of producing what he ex-
plicitly states is a comparative Sanskrit Grammar and a reader. His ideas about
the relationship between Pali and Sanskrit are that Sanskrit seems to be mixed
whereas Pali seems to be closer to Greek (and hence more original) (Letters I:
353). Mller gives his answer in a letter of 30 October (Letters I: 360-361). He is
convinced that both he and Rask will be seen by the King and the circle around
him as fraudulent, i.e., as having received money for one purpose but having
used them for another, if he were to return home.
Rask continues his journey.
Let us pause here to speculate what it would have meant for Rasks position
in the history of linguistics, had he followed his original plan and produced a
Sanskrit grammar and reader in 1819.9 The Wallich donation is detailed and
annotated in a paper by Jens Lassen Rasmussen (17251826) from 1819. It does
not only contain Sanskrit books, but focusing on those we note that it covers all
the relevant literature on Sanskrit by the English (Colebrooke 1805, Carey 1806,
Forster 1810 and Wilkins 1808) and also includes four Sanskrit grammars in
Sanskrit. Furthermore, we find the first part of the Wilson Sanskrit dictionary
and the dictionary by Amera Sinha annotated by Colebrooke and published in

8. Alt hvad i senere Aaringer er bleven trykt i Calcutta og Serampore. Deriblandt ikke min-
dre end 3 forskjellige Grammatikker over Sanskritsproget samt et Sanskrit-Lexicon. Buescher
(2011: xvii) classifies the manuscripts from the Wallich donation as solely concerning Ay-
urveda topics but this is only part of the donation.

9. Amsterdamska (1987) has pointed to an interesting riddle: Why was it German scholars
and not English or French ones that brought Sanskrit into continued and systematic universi-
ty study? There are reasons to be found for this in the various university systems adopted but
Amsterdamska also suggests that the ideology of historicist idealism was decisive (Amster-
damska 1987: 35-36). This seems to me both true and important. It should not be overlooked,
however, that the idea of a German linguistic unity and common historical past had impor-
tant political ramifications as well.
Editors Introduction *xxiii

1808, and, to make the collection complete, a considerable number of Sanskrit


texts. There is no doubt that the collection might have substituted for any visit to
Serampore or Calcutta. The proof is that these books were exactly the books on
which Rask would base his later work on Sanskrit detailed below.
If we now take a look at the European scene it is evident that Sanskrit was
en vogue after Friedrich Schlegels famous book of 1808 on the language and
wisdom of the Indians. The next period would see the foundation and rapid
development of a new scientific discipline, that of Oriental studies (Mangold
2004). Mangold convincingly argues that the study of Oriental languages only
gradually separated itself from the study of religion. A crucial person in this
respect was Franz Bopp (17911867), one of the founders of Indo-European
comparative linguistics.
Bopps Conjugationssystem was published in 1816, and it would quite defi-
nitely have placed Rask as the only one of the three founders, Grimm included,
who mastered all the main branches of the new discipline if he had published on
Sanskrit in 1819. We may form quite a definite impression of what the contribu-
tion would have been by taking a look at what the group of manuscripts written
by Rask and now designated as Ny Kongelige Samling 149 c 61-68 contain. The
collection of interlocking manuscripts indeed may be seen as a prime example
of the principles and the methodology outlined in the prize essay. A reader of
the essay might have asked how Rasmus Rask would work with a language like
Sanskrit; here is the answer.
The centerpiece of the group is of course the incomplete, but still very close
to completed, Sanskrit grammar in Danish (No.61) which is comprehensive (116
pages long) and built according to the plan used by Rask for his other works. This
is supplemented by dictionaries with Devanagari entries and English explanations
of word meanings (No. 63) and transliterated entries and Danish explanations
(No. 64). No. 68 then contains Rasks selections from the literature and the manu-
scripts that he was not able to buy, sometimes with translations (into English),
sometimes without. This would, of course, be significantly supplemented by his
work with the manuscripts he did indeed buy. Finally, there is a (partly anno-
tated) survey of the literature on Sanskrit (No. 62), mentioning a number of Eng-
lish language grammars of Sanskrit, by Wilkins (Rask comments that it is very
usable), Forster (bad), and Yates, and dictionaries by Colebrooke and Wilson.10
Bopps Conjugationssystem and Othmar Franks (17701830) Grammatica San-
scrita (from 1823) both figure among the later entries. There is also a reference to
a paper by Humboldt from 1822 on a Sanskrit topic. The list documents that Rask

10. Most of these works were printed in India and thus could be the books that Rask himself
acquired and tried to sell in 1831; certainly Bopp mentions Wilson (cf. note 11).
*xxiv Editors Introduction

had had access to what was available and thus was completely au courant. Since its
latest entry is dated 1823, Marie Bjerrum dates the list as a whole as having been
written over the course of the period 18201823 (which would mean en voyage).
Whether that is true for the other manuscripts is impossible to say; they probably
represent a sustained effort lasting several years.
Taken as a complete system we note that Rask in order to build the gram-
mar of a language (cf. note 25 below) used dictionaries and philology in the
strict sense as his essential instruments, and that in consequence he had to mas-
ter all these now separate and specialized linguistic fields of inquiry.
But it was not to be. Rask left his materials for a Sanskrit grammar for
posterity, but no one noticed; he himself discarded all things Asiatic in despair
when he did not get the professorship he so desired (cf. next section) and only
returned to this branch of learning during the 1830s when it was too late to
finish his original plans.11

2.4 Back in Denmark 18231832


Rasks return to Denmark in May 1823 after the great voyage was celebrated
twice, first by the Icelandic literary society (Hi slenzka Bkmenntafjelag) on
13 May and secondly, the day after, by some of his university colleagues (Rn-
ning 1887: 118119). Everybody expected great exotic news but none was pro-
duced. Rask was again caught between the expectations that he would deliver
and his own need of a steady income and a real position.
The positions available to a scholar of his interests were few. Actually, there
was at that time only one professorship of Oriental languages at the University
of Copenhagen (and only one University in the kingdom) and this was from
the start occupied by teachers of Hebrew for the benefit of students of theology
(Slottved 1978 D7: 145ff.).12
When Rask returned from his travels the professorship of Hebrew was not
vacant. It had been so to speak inherited by Nicolai Christoffer Kall (1749

11. A curious letter from Franz Bopp to Rask of 20 February 1831 has survived (Letter 940,
Letters II: 254-255) in which Bopp declares himself willing to assist Rask in selling his schne
Sammlung sanskritischer Bcher. Why Rask wanted to sell his Sanskrit books just when he was
again preoccupied with the Oriental languages, remains a mystery. The letter is very generous
and kind and seems to indicate genuine friendship. So, for instance, Bopp suggests that Rask
would be able to find a better position (than at the University of Copenhagen) in Prussia. The
sale in the end turned out to be unsuccessful and the books were returned to Rask.

12. Ironically, Rask himself by his very scholarship and reputation would become instru-
mental in making the authorities at the University of Copenhagen create two regular profes-
sorships in 1844, shortly after his death: one in the Nordic languages and one in Oriental
Editors Introduction *xxv

1823), who succeeded his father Johan Christian Kall (17141775), but he died
in October 1823, less than half a year after Rasks return. Rask, however, was not
promoted; the professorship was taken over by Jens Lassen Rasmussen, who
had catalogued the Wallich donation in 1819, thus showing his broad knowl-
edge of all the so-called Oriental languages. Rasmussen had been an adjunct
since 1813 and an extraordinary professor since 1815, and thus by university
traditions could expect an ordinary professorship (Slottved 1978: 147). This
was completely in line with what the university authorities found rational at the
time, although we as observers with hindsight may appreciate the feelings that
Rask must have had. When, he must have asked himself, would he ever be in a
position to be promoted and when had the world of learning ever heard of Jens
Lassen Rasmussen?13
Rask applied for a post as soon as he arrived in Copenhagen and, after a
year of waiting, was given the title of Professor of literary history with special
reference to Asiatic literature on 14 May 1825 (Slottved 1978: 165) but no raise
in pay. On the contrary, for formal reasons the Board decided that he was to be
given the pay that he had already been given as part of his previous job as a uni-
versity librarian, but only as an extraordinary bonus for a period of three years,
and thus he had to beg for a renewal every three years.
Jens Lassen Rasmussen died in 1826, however, and at this junction Rask must
again have had high hopes of getting the position. Now he was the extraordi-
nary professor waiting in line for an ordinary professorship. His hopes turned to
nothing, however, when Matthias Hagen Hohlenberg (17971845) who was even
younger than Rask but was the son-in-law of Ove Malling (for whom see section
3.1 below), was appointed as Rasmussens successor. Hohlenberg, after 5 years in
the position, opted for the professorship in theology and thus left the post vacant
in 1831. Finally, Rask got it in December that year (Slottved 1978: 147).
A complication of some relevance here was that the logic of Rasks whole lin-
guistic enterprise told him to make his basic data as comparable as possible, as
can be seen in the text of the prize essay itself. One obstruction was of course the
various indigenous orthographies. He not only worked out a scheme for translit-
erating all the Indian languages into a European orthographical system and had

languages. Both were filled by pupils of Rask: Niels Matthias Petersen, his friend and biogra-
pher (17911862), and Niels Ludvig Westergaard (18151878), his most obvious pupil as a
Sanskrit scholar, respectively.

13. Rasmussen had studied with Silvestre de Sacy and was an original scholar on the subject
of Islamic connections to the Western world, notably trade connections. He was the son in
law of N.C. Kall, his predecessor in the position. According to the biographical entry at www.
denstoredanske.dk, he committed suicide.
*xxvi Editors Introduction

printing types made for that purpose (Mller 1833: 19), but also analyzed the
Danish orthography in his great treatise called Forsg til en videnskabelig dansk
Retskrivningslre (An attempt at a scientific treatment of Danish orthography)
(Rask 1826), and by doing so paved the way for what was later to become stan-
dard Danish orthography (Gregersen 1985, Galberg Jacobsen 2010).
This did not, however, make Rask popular. Firstly, even his colleagues did
not understand why he spent so much time and energy on this subject (though
it should be obvious that it was part and parcel of his program), and secondly,
the populace ridiculed him as the inventor of strange letters (Mller 1833: 23).
He insisted that societies that were to print his contributions, such as the Royal
Academy and the Nordisk Oldskriftselskab, use his own orthography but for
that very reason his written works were denied publication. He even left the
Royal Danish Society for Danish Language and History because members had
complained that he wanted to use his own orthography in his own contributions
(Werlauff 1847: 197, note r). No wonder he felt left alone. Even N. M. Petersen
quarreled with him as to the right method of getting his orthography used. The
issue here was not the orthography per se (although Petersen did later change
some aspects of the program) but how to promote it. Rask was adamant that if
only enough authors used it, the readers would accept it, whereas Petersen had a
much more pessimistic view and preferred gradual reform. Markey (1976: xxiii)
quotes the insidious letter written by Christian Molbech (17831857) to Jacob
Grimm which concludes in the joke, ascribed to the King, that one wondered
that the only result of the many years of travel to distant countries would be an o
above the a. (Rask had suggested using the letter <> instead of double a.)
Early on Rask had had ideas that he was being persecuted: in modern day
terms he suffered from some sort of paranoia. In a letter to the above mentioned
Swedish colleague Cnattingius about his childhood and later biography, he writes
as follows:
It happened once at a foreign place where I had to learn something that I got a
pretty strong portion of arsenic on an open sandwich. I know the person who
gave it to me to revenge himself on me or my father; I know the occasion and
remember with certainty the exact circumstances, but my conscience tells me
that I was innocent and I have a long time ago forgiven this matter and so will
not mention any one.14 (Letters I: 296)

14. Undertiden hnde det att jag p et frmmanda stlle, der jag skulle lra ngon ting, fick
en ganska stark portion arsenik p en smrgs. Jag knner personen, som gaf mig den fr att
hmnas p mig eller min far, jag vet anledningen och erinrar fullkomligt vl den minsta om-
stndigheten; men mitt samvete sger mig att jag var oskyldig, och jag har lnge sedan frltit
denna sak, hvarfre jag ingen vill nmna.
Editors Introduction *xxvii

He goes on to say how he got sick and was confined to bed for the better part
of a year and how he still suffers from the consequences! It is curious to note
that there are certain similarities between the later attacks of paranoia in India,
where he could not understand what the natives were saying and feared for his
life (Mller 1833: 18 with reference to the diary, see Rnning 1887: 109) and
later on when he thought that he was being poisoned by his erstwhile fiance,
Louise Nyerup, daughter of his paternal friend Rasmus Nyerup. The similarities
lie in the fact that he explicitly forgives the natives in India and that he thought
that Louise Nyerup would poison him by putting before him a particular kind
of food.
Now that he was in fact being persecuted for his beliefs (in a rational Danish
orthography), his anxieties grew, and N.M. Petersen details how he thought he
was being poisoned and some other time that he would be burnt to death like
the saga-hero Njal (Petersen 1908: 189, cf. note 1).
Markey (1976: xxv) bases his rendering of the relationship to Nyerup and his
daughter on Diderichsens discovery among N. M. Petersens papers of a draft for
his biography of Rask, where Petersen is much more explicit than he is in the
published biography of 1834 (Diderichsen 1960: 216). It is vital in this case to
distinguish between the facts and the interpretations by Petersen and Diderichsen.
The facts are that Nyerup was until his death at age seventy in 1829 a provost of the
Regensen and thus had free lodging there (and a lot of space) and was at the same
time head of the University Library. Rask wanted to succeed him in both of these
positions when his paternal friend died. He thus applied for both (Letters II: 224f
and commentary ad loc.; Diderichsen 1960: 216-263). Now, what Petersen says is
that Rask had wondered why he did not get promoted, Petersen concludes that he
had fallen out of favour, presumably because of the feud about the orthography
during 1825 and 1826. This turned out not to be true in the end, but it is the basis
for Rasks speculations. Petersen surmises that it was possible that someone was
trying to force Rask to marry a person whom he disliked thoroughly. This some-
one presumably was Rasmus Nyerup who wanted his youngest daughter married
and cared for.
Louise Nyerup was born in 1799 and, by the customs of the day, she was a
housekeeper for her father since Nyerups wife had died in 1818, and she was
the only unmarried daughter to remain at home; it was high time that she got
married if she was to have a chance; both Nyerup and she herself were getting
older. Rask, on the other hand, as we have heard above, had actually suspected
Louise Nyerup of being able to plan to poison him in March 1829. This was
two years after Rask had proposed to her only to see the engagement broken off
under peculiar circumstances which hurt him immensely (P. E. Mller 1833:
27). Rask mentions in his letter of application to the Board of the University
*xxviii Editors Introduction

of Copenhagen, in which he declares his interest in the position as provost of


Regensen, that Nyerup had promised him to resign when he turned seventy,
both from the Library and from Regensen, only to make it possible for Rask to
become his successor (Diderichsen 1960: 217, n. 22). This would have given him
both a permanent position (and salary) and a place to live; but Rask was quite
aware of the fact that he had only slim chances of getting the particular post at
Regensen since he was single.
Louise Nyerup apparently did not want to marry Rask and according to the
Rask diary turned him down on 13 May 1827 in spite of her initial acceptance of
Rasks proposal on 10 May (Diderichsen 1960: 216, n. 22). The diary has the fol-
lowing peculiar wording: I proposed to Nyerups daughter [Rask does not refer
to her as Louise] and almost got her and her fathers yes (ibid.). Petersen writes
that Nyerup did not know either his wifes or his daughters secrets and Rask
talks about Louise Nyerup making a journey to Germany (but actually only to
Jutland) in connection with the broken engagement (ibid.).
My suggested interpretation is that Louise Nyerup had a child outside mar-
riage and that this child was the reason for her journey. Rask only proposed
to her to solve two problems at once: Nyerups problem of having his daughter
cared for and Rasks own problem of getting a wife (so that he would be able to
succeed Nyerup at the Regensen and at the same time continue having Louise
cook for him).
Incidentally, Louise Nyerup never married and lived with various relatives
for the rest of her life. She died at the age of 84.
The hope of getting Nyerups position as head of the University Library was
fulfilled, but the hope of getting the free lodging at the Regensen was not. The
board preferred the classical philologist Frederik Christian Petersen (1786
1859) who was indeed married and had children.
In his biography of Rask, N. M. Petersen comments that, when Rask finally
had realistic hopes of concentrating on the Oriental languages, he did in fact put
everything else aside and seemed to be his good old self (Petersen 1834: 85-86).
This is as solid evidence as we may hope for, namely, that Rasks paranoia was
related to the fact that in spite of his contemporary European reputation as a
savant of the first order, he did not get any university promotion until the very
end of his life.
Rask did not die a rich man but he turned out to be somewhat wealthier
than the world had had reason to suspect him to have been by the way he had
lived. He gave N. M. Petersen a considerable sum of money to produce some-
thing to be published in his new orthography (it was eventually used to finance
Rasks collected papers in three volumes) and he left money for his half brother
and his sister (Christensen 1932a, b).
Editors Introduction *xxix

Rask was buried on 20 November 1832, and since the organizers had ex-
pected a large crowd, they had ordered 13 carriages complete with drivers and
servants. But the students relieved the pall bearers and carried his coffin from
his home in Badstuestrde no.17 to Nrreport. Here the hearse waited to take
him to Assistens Cemetery where his grave is still to be found. The hearse was
followed to its destination by a huge crowd of Copenhageners.
After the funeral his books were sold. Clearly they made up the better part
of the fortune left by his estate, a fortune which when he lived served him as a
scholar and thus could not be used to ameliorate his living conditions. We have a
good grasp of which books Rask had owned, since there is a complete catalogue
of the auction, numbering 1773 items in total (Christensen 1932a, b).

2.5 Rasmus Rask in the history of Danish linguistics


All Danish linguists are, whether they are awareof this or not, pupils of Rask.
A number of them have given their interpretation of his life and what he ac-
complished, often in connection with centenaries or bicentenaries, starting with
his friend and pupil, Niels Matthias Petersen, who never tired of championing
his cause, and who wrote the authoritative biography as his contribution to the
first volume of the edition of Rasks collected papers in 1834. This is a beau-
tifully written and comprehensive account of Rasks life produced by a close
friend who had discussed a number of issues with the protagonist. It was fol-
lowed by Wimmer (1887), Thomsen (1887, translated into German 1889) and
(1902: 38ff.), Pedersen (1916: 41-44), and Pedersen (1924: 228-234, translated
into English 1931, and still a wonderful, though one-sided, introduction to the
triumphs of 19th-century linguistics). Otto Jespersen (18601943) wrote his
book about Rask (Jespersen 1918) as a volume in a series on Leaders of the
people commemorating the centenary of the prize essay, while Holger Peder-
sen (18671953) subsequently contributed the introduction (Pedersen 1932) to
the Hjelmslev edition of the selected works (also in German), published 100
years after Rasks death. Louis Hjelmslev (18991965) himself had planned to
write a biography of Rask, and no one would have been in a better position to
do so judging by his exquisite notes to the selected works and his commentar-
ies on the letters, but apart from Hjelmslev (1932) and the brief but important
study of 1933, he only published his Commentaires sur la vie et luvre de Ras-
mus Rask in 1951. Hjelmslevs point of view on Rask forms the basis for Marie
Bjerrums (19202001) dissertation of 1959, which in turn triggered the book
of 1960 by Paul Diderichsen (19051964). Diderichsen, by the way, had been
appointed an opponent at the defense of Bjerrums dissertation. However, while
he was preparing his opposition, he became so engulfed in the history of Rasks
*xxx Editors Introduction

early years that the dissertation defense had to wait until he had finished his own
book. Finally, Jrgen Rischel wrote a booklet on Rasmus Rask celebrating his
bicentenary in 1987. For English-only researchers, the treatment in Karlsson et
al. (2000: 156-164 and ad indicem) may be recommended, since it places Rask
among his contemporaries in the Nordic countries and does so on the backdrop
of the European scene. Diderichsen wrote a short version of his book as his con-
tribution to the Wenner-Gren Foundation symposium on Revolution vs. Con-
tinuity in the Study of Language in August 1964. It was first published as part of
the volume of Diderichsens papers produced on the occasion of his all too early
death (Diderichsen 1966) but is now readily available in Hymes (1974). The So-
ciety for Nordic Philology has celebrated selected anniversaries by publishing
a book dedicated to ascertaining the state of the art. In 1937, when the first 25
years had passed, Poul Andersen (19011985) wrote the piece on Rask (Ander-
sen 1937). In 1979 the University of Copenhagen celebrated the first 500 years
of its existence by staging a number of scientific symposia. Among them was the
RaskHjelmslev symposium on Typology and Genetics of Language a report
of which may be found in Thrane et al. (1980). The translator of the prize essay,
Niels Ege, contributed several papers, the most obviously relevant one being Ege
(1980). Jrgen Rischel in his contributions to volume 2 of the handbook on the
Nordic languages edited by Bandle et al. has given a highly original overview
of The Contribution of the Nordic countries to historical-comparative linguis-
tics: Rasmus Rask and his followers (Rischel 2002). Finally, Hans Frede Nielsen
contributed the biographical entry on Rask in volume 24 of Hoops Reallexikon
(Nielsen 2003).
Among the books on Rask written by non-linguists we may single out F.V.V.
Rnnings treatment which is well documented and lucidly written (Rnning
1887). Rask has even found his way into Danish fiction as witnessed by recent
publications by the well known writer Hanne Marie Svendsen (2009) and the
considerably younger author Mathilde Walther Clark (2005). A popular biogra-
phy of Rasmus Rasks life and letters by Kirsten Rask appeared in 2002.

3. The prize essay

3.1 A question and its consequences


The prize question which was announced by the Royal Danish Academy of Sci-
ences on 10 June 1810 (Lomborg 1960: 480-481) in Danish and Latin translates
as follows (after Karlsson et al. 2000: 219; cf. the translation below p.8 [= 23 in the
original]):
Editors Introduction *xxxi

To investigate, by means of historical criticism, and to illustrate with appropri-


ate examples, from what source the ancient Scandinavian language can most
correctly be derived; to explain the nature of the language and its relationships,
from ancient times and up through the Middle Ages, to Scandinavian and Ger-
man dialects; and to determine exactly the rules on which all derivations and
comparisons in these languages should be based.15

Louis Hjelmslev has discussed the origin and wording of this question in his
commentary to the corrected edition of 1932. He suggests that it might have
been Peter Erasmus Mller who was responsible for the proposal to announce
this question precisely at that time, but that he could not have had any knowl-
edge of the fact that Rask had prepared an investigation along these lines in
his school days (Hjelmslev 1934: 2-3, with reference to a now lost letter quoted
by Petersen 1834: 15-18). P. E. Mller cannot, however, have been the original
spokesman for Rask at the meeting when the prize question was formulated
since he was not yet a member of the Royal Academy in 1810. He was only elect-
ed in 1811 (Lomborg 1942: 365). Neither was Johan von Blow able to speak
for Rask. He was awarded an honorary membership only in 1815 (ibid: 431);
Rasmus Nyerup was elected even later, in 1823, immediately before Rask himself
in 1825 (Lomborg 1942: 367). On the other hand, the previously mentioned C.
F. Degen was a member (ibid. 363).
It turns out that the question16 bears the signatures of the following mem-
bers of the Historical Class of the Academy: A(braham) Kall, N(iels Iversen)
Schow, (Ove) Malling and B(rge) Thorlacius.17
The authors turn out to be a cross section of Danish intellectuals interest-
ed in the historical elucidation of the state of Denmark and its past: Abraham
Kall (17431821) was by then senior Professor of History and Geography at the
University of Copenhagen. Niels Iversen Schow (17541830) was extraordinary
Professor of Archaeology; Ove Malling (17471829) was an extremely influen-
tial civil servant and for some time prime minister, now mostly known for his
book on Store og gode handlinger, which was used as a reader (and a template
for spelling) by successive generations of pupils from 1777 onwards (Malling
1777), and finally Brge Thorlacius (17751829), who was the son of the learned

15. The Danish original is found in Figure1 below.

16. Interestingly, the word order is a little different from the one given by Rask himself in the
prize essay and accords better with the one given above than the translation found below on
page 8 of the edition.

17. The excerpt from the protocol at the Academy was kindly sent to me by Katrine
Hassenkam Zoref.
*xxxii Editors Introduction

Figure 1. The original question posed by the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters.
At the top the Danish version: At undersge med historisk Critik, og oplyse med passende
Exempler, af hvilken Kilde det gamle skandinaviske Sprog sikkrest kan udledes; at angive
Sprogets Charakteer og det Forhold, hvori det fra ldre Tider og igiennem Middelalderen
har staaet, deels til Nordiske, deels til Germaniske Dialecter; samt nyagtigen at bestemme
de Grundstninger, hvorpaa al Udledelse og Sammenligning i disse Tungemaal br bygges.
For the two translations cf. the present text. After the signatures there is a message from the
Secretary (Thomas Bugge [17401815], Professor of Mathematics) who asks the Professor
of Latin, Brge Thorlacius, to add a Latin version which is the easily readable version below.
Editors Introduction *xxxiii

Icelander who was to finish the Schning edition of Heimskringla, Skuli Thorla-
cius Thordarson (17411815), and who himself took over where his father had
left off. Thorlacius the younger may be supposed to be the real instigator of this
particular question although he only signed last (probably, they signed accord-
ing to year of election and thus seniority in the Academy). He had only been
appointed to the post as an ordinary Professor of Latin in1803 and elected to
the Academy in 1810, the year in which the question was formulated; but with
his background and typically rationalistic erudition it would be obvious to see
him as the instigator par excellence among these four. Incidentally, he was also
the son in law of Abraham Kall, the senior member of the group (and thus the
one to sign first).
We may discuss how much the question actually limited Rasks response and
how much it furthered it. It did indeed determine the characteristic structure of
the work in that the Icelandic language is taken as the pivot for a comparative
exercise taking us through the various geographical candidates for the position
as the language best suited to elucidate the source of the Old Icelandic or Nordic
tongue, gradually giving a total picture of which languages were related to Ice-
landic and which were not. This, however, was probably very much a picture of
the development of the authors own studies, having Icelandic as the core around
which he built his successive raids into foreign territory, always illuminating
them by first casting the available evidence in the same mould.
On the other hand, the strategy used allows the author to demonstrate his
mastery of his own stated principles of discovery in that he has to discard any
original relationship in four out of the eight cases which he analyzes, namely,
Greenlandic, Celtic, Basque and Finnic. In the case of Celtic this soon turned
out to be wrong but it is still interesting to study why Rask came to the wrong
conclusion and why he changed his mind so quickly (Pedersen 1924: 53).
Rask wrote at a time when the differentiation between what Collinge calls
the T (for Typology) strain, the G (for Genetic) strain and finally the E (for
Evolution) strain was not in place (Collinge 1995). This gives the prize essay its
character of being close to the discovery of the various types of linguistic rela-
tionships outlined in the theoretical chapter at the beginning of the prize essay.
The sheer possibility of being wrong is still open and vibrant. That only enhances
its value for us in forcing us to question whether the orthodoxy of differentiating
between the various strains has indeed brought us closer to a clear picture of the
history of language or not. The present interest in language contact, originally
fuelled by the appearance of Thomason & Kaufman (1988), and the somewhat
more recent (renewed) revolt against seeing languages as delimited national en-
tities under the watchword of languaging (e.g., Jrgensen 2010) bear witness to
the fact that this is not a foregone conclusion.
*xxxiv Editors Introduction

Rask was no Herderian.18 There is no reference at all to Herder in his letters,


nor is there in his works. His personality as a researcher is thoroughly rationalist
and he disliked for both scientific and personal reasons the proponents of
Herderian nationalism in Denmark, N.F.S. Grundtvig (17831872) and Chris-
tian Molbech (17831857), as can be seen in his letter to Blow of 1 January
1812 (Letters I: 85), where he characterizes Grundtvig as an irrational mystic.
Although he, like Grimm, is a staunch patriot, it is not a romantic idealist stance
based on the idea of a Volksgeist that leads him to the love of his language and
its ancient roots, but rather an old-fashioned idea of the King as the father of his
country and an acute sense of cultural independence from Germany and Ger-
man scholarship.
The differences between Jacob Grimm and Rasmus Rask thus may be
phrased partly in terms of ideological background Grimm certainly was a
Herderian (according to Robins 1967: 172) and partly in the different objec-
tives they had set for themselves.19 Grimm concentrated on Germanic, whereas
Rask continued his search for relationships until he reached the limit, as can be
seen in the final pages of the essay itself, where Rask refers to the clearly unre-
lated Malayan and Australian classes, thus rounding off his treatise not only for
lack of evidence (which goes for the Indic and Persian languages) but because of
clear evidence that a boundary has been detected.

3.2 The genesis of Rasks prize essay


The production of the prize essay was no simple thing. Rask approached the
Academy (anonymously of course) in a letter of 14 December 1811 (Letters I:
7772) and asked for an extension of the deadline by at least a year. He refers
in the letter to his collections which he had begun to systematize and reorder to
make the production of a response possible. Privately he showed the plan and
some specimens to his friend Rasmus Nyerup and to Peter Erasmus Mller, who
had now been elected to the class in the Royal Academy which was to form a
verdict when the time came. In a letter to Johan von Blow asking for money
on the occasion of a possibility to go to Sweden (Letters I, 115-119), Rask writes
(p. 117):

18. Or rather, in the prize essay he isnt. Diderichsen 1968 lists Herderian statements in his
other works (233, note 6), but I would seriously question whether the statements are really
Herderian or just commonplace for the period. This merits further study.

19. The relationship between Rask and the two brothers Grimm has been analyzed in detail
by Sonderegger 1986, where a most useful survey of the German reception of Rask may also
be found.
Editors Introduction *xxxv

the Royal Academy has published a prize question calling for an investigation of
the source of the old Nordic language. This I have thought I would try to answer
and I will explain the Icelandic by the Greek as the oldest and most original lan-
guage in the whole of Europe. The question was actually to be answered last year
and I sent in a specimen of the treatise with a request for extension. I had sent
in a number of lexical comparisons and of the grammar a comparison between
the declension systems of Icelandic and Greek where each ending in the first
was referred to and deduced by the last. I showed these fragments to Nyerup
and he said that they were excellent and that the grammatical comparison was
something completely new which no one before me had discovered or even
suspected. A verdict just as flattering I received from Professor Erasm. Mller,
who is in that class of the Academy that will have to evaluate it. Obviously I
was highly flattered and encouraged and the more so since I believe by this in
addition much can be illuminated of the inner workings of the Greek language
itself.20

The Academy granted the extension on 3 January 1812 (Lomborg 1960: 481),
but the essay was not delivered to the Academy until 2 December 1814 (ibid.).
By that time Rask was on his trip to Iceland. Much has been made of the fact
that Rask was unable to see the book through the printing press, as stated in
Rasks own preface below, and that professors Nyerup and Finn Magnusson
(17811847), the latter among the first learned Icelanders to greet Rasmus Rask
as a worthy friend of Iceland (Letters I: 87ff.) and later to become Chief of the
Archives in Copenhagen, had to correct the proofs. This is not quite true how-
ever, since the very last proofs seem to have been sent to Rask himself when he
was in Stockholm (Letters I: 242, 256, 283). However that may be, the extremely
complicated nature of the printing assignment and the haste which was so char-
acteristic of Rask in combination with the above-mentioned factors in sum
explain the many discrepancies that Hjelmslev notes between the manuscript
and the edition. These discrepancies have been resolved in the corrected edition

20. af Videnskab. Selskab er udsat den Prisopgave at undersge det gamle nordiske Sprogs
Oprindelse. Dette har jeg tnkt at forsge paa og jeg udleder Islandsken af Grsken som
det ldste og originaleste Sprog i hele Evropa [.] Opgaven var egentlig for forrige Aar og jeg
indsendte en Prve af Afhandlingen med Anmodning om Udsttelse. Det indsendte inde-
holdt en Del Lexicalske Sammenligninger, og af grammati. en Sammenligning imellem den
islandske og Grske Deklinatsionsteori, hvori enhver Endelse i den frste var henfrt til og
udledt af det sidste. Jeg viste Nyerup disse Brudstykker og han sagde de vare fortrffelige og
at den grammatikalske Sammenligning var noget ganske nyt, som ingen fr havde opdaget
eller ahnet [.] En ligesaa smigrende Dom fik jeg af Prof. Erasm. Mller som er i den Klasse
af Vidensk. Selskab der skal bedmme det. Naturligvis maatte dette smigre mig meget og
opmuntre mig saa meget mer som jeg tror derved tillige kann opdages og oplyses meget i det
grske Sprogs inderste Vsen.
*xxxvi Editors Introduction

by Hjelmslev, and this corrected edition without variants is the basis for the
present work, Niels Eges translation into English. Thus, this version may be said
to convey to the reader what Rask would have intended to communicate, as far
as we are able to reconstruct this, if he had written his work in the international
language of today.
The prize essay was evaluated by the Historical Class at the Royal Academy.
The evaluators produced the following verdict:
The treatise with the motto Sialdan eru dasmidir ahlaupavrk21 which was de-
livered to the Academy contains many erudite and new investigations, bears
witness to vast linguistic knowledge and an extraordinary gift of combination.
Although the author has not yet reached as far back as to the oldest and furthest
removed sources of the Nordic languages and although he has not treated the
Persian, the Indic and other Asiatic languages with the same diligence and suc-
cess as that with which he has treated the comparison of the Gothic, Finnic,
Slavic, and Thracian (Greek and Latin) languages, he has yet penetrated deeper
into the origins of the Nordic languages than any of his predecessors and the
stretch of the road that he has cleared is already so considerable and his new
discoveries so important that the treatise for these reasons seems to deserve the
prize. Some points which one would wish the author to take into closer con-
sideration might on demand be conveyed to him.22 (rsted 1813/1815: 29-30)

We note that already in 1815 the evaluators point to the lack of a thorough inves-
tigation of the Oriental and Asian languages and thereby so to speak outline the
program that Rask was to follow after his completion of the prize essay. There
seems to have been a demand for knowledge about precisely these languages
in the air, or rather in the Zeitgeist. This is backed up by a letter only five years
later from Nyerup to Rask, by then in St. Petersburg, where Nyerup mentions
the fact that Sanskrit is after all, as we all know, the basis on which our progress

21.. This Icelandic proverb says literally that rare are those works which are worth admiration,
i.e. it is not easy to produce an admirable work. I gratefully acknowledge the help of Ari Pll
Kristinsson here.

22. Den med Devise: Sialdan eru dasmidir ahlaupavrk indkomne Afhandling indeholder
mange lrde og nye Undersgelser, rber udbredte Sprogkundskaber, og en ualmindelig
Combinationsgave. Er Forfatteren end ikke trngt frem til de nordiske Sprogs ldste og fjer-
neste Kilder, og har han ikke med saadan Flid og Held, som den, hvormed han har behandlet
Sammenligningen af de Gothiske, Finniske, Slaviske, Traciske (Grske og Latinske) Sprog,
undersgt det Persiske, det Indiske og flere asiatiske Sprog, er han dog trngt dybere ind i
de nordiske Sprogs Oprindelse end nogen af hans Forgjngere, og den Strkning af Veien,
han har banet, er allerede saa betydelig, og det Nye, han har opdaget, saa vigtigt, at Afhan-
dlingen desaarsag synes at fortjene den udsatte Prmie. Nogle Poster, som man nskede For-
fatteren vilde tage under niere Overveielse, skulle paa Forlangende blive ham meddeelte.
Editors Introduction *xxxvii

rests.23 Nyerup goes on to mention that two professors were already lecturing
on Sanskrit in Germany, one in Berlin (Franz Bopp), the other in Bonn (August
Wilhelm Schlegel [17671845]). In other words, Nyerup agreed with Rask that
he did not have to go to India to gather materials for his Sanskrit studies.
Thus the Academy had approved the prize essay but that was of course not
enough. The book still had to appear and to be brought to the notice of the world
of learning. The Secretary of the Royal Academy, the famous Danish physicist
Hans Christian rsted (17771851), wrote a fairly substantial resum of the es-
say in the same volume of Oversigt over Det Kongelige Danske Videnskabernes
Selskabs Forhandlinger og det Medlemmers Arbeider de sidste to Aar (Summary
of negotiations of the Royal Danish Academy of Science and Letters and a re-
view of the works published by its members) which had carried the evaluation
(rsted 1813/1815: 19-24). Considering the position of the Royal Danish Acad-
emy and other academies in the contemporary world of learning, this must have
been a most effective advertisement of a treatise soon to appear.
Rask applied for money to print the book and the King provided a grant for
the printing in May 1817 (see Letters I: 233) in the middle of the crisis created
by Rasks stay in Sweden. When the prize essay was finally printed (it was fin-
ished in January 1818), it did indeed have a deep and lasting influence on Rasks
life, since it was on the occasion of delivering the book to his Majesty Frederik
VI that Peter Erasmus Mller succeeded in obtaining the grant from the Kings
treasury to make Rasks travels to India and Ceylon possible.
The structure of the essay itself and its results have been admirably and
thoroughly discussed in Holger Pedersens introduction to the Hjelmslev edi-
tion. Pedersen wrote on the essay from the point of view of the Neogrammarian
school and thus pointed out where Rask went wrong compared with the prevail-
ing orthodoxy: He did not clearly distinguish between sounds and letters (Ped-
ersen 1932: xxxii; cf. Gregersen(2009 [1987]): 36 et passim), he was wrong about
Celtic (but very soon corrected the mistake (Pedersen, p. xxviii) and he does not
clearly distinguish between typological and genetic comparisons (p. xxxi), but
he may be excused for his mistakes by the heritage from the past. More serious
seems to be the possible accusation of not belonging to the historical school
which alone is responsible for progress according to Pedersen (p. xxx) but rather
to the systematic school (i.e. language philosophy, to use Pedersens term, or a
structuralism avant la lettre to follow Hjelmslevs analysis in his Commentaires
of 1951). Pedersen quickly dismisses the discussion by noting that Systemat-
ics is no opposition to language history, on the contrary it may be an excellent

23. Sanskrit er jo, som bekjendt, det hvorpaa alt vor Vee og Vel beroer.
*xxxviii Editors Introduction

preparation for it.24 Yet, half a page later he concludes that the ultimate goal that
Rask had in mind undoubtedly was to discover genetic relationships.25
I think Pedersens suspicion captures some of the essence of the work as it
vacillates between the various currents which were then as now present on the
linguistic scene (if not at that time so precisely formulated as it is now): Histori-
cal studies focused on genetic relationships still owe us a theoretical solution to
the riddle of how hunter gatherer languages might be related in the distant
past before the advent of writing (and nationalities). And contact linguistics and
languaging still have to provide answers about how much we are in fact able to
reverse the contemporary, yet of course historical, conception of language which
seems to be if not inherently then at least irreparably Herderian.
From this point of view as from Pedersen (1932: xxxi) the methodologi-
cal and theoretical first chapter of the book stands out as the main contribution
and the most important reason why this book will never fall out of fashion. Let
me make just two observations.
To my knowledge, this is the first time the distinction between theoretical
and applied linguistics is central to a linguistic argument (p.17 in the transla-
tion): The theoretical part of Etymology is characterized as follows: on the
basis of well-known and indisputable instances, [it] finds out and sets forth the
propositions and rules on which its applied counterpart bases itself , whereas
the applied type of linguistic analysis includes a dictionary and a grammar. This
distinction is supplemented by a distinction between single language descrip-
tions and universal statements. As we have seen above, Rask is in like measures
concerned with finding the unique system appropriate for each language and
with having the same plan for all descriptions in order to obtain strict compa-
rability. The theoretical part of the linguistic effort would then be the abstract

24. Men systematik er ikke nogen modstning til sproghistorie, kan tvrtimod vre en
udmrket forberedelse dertil.

25. An episode from Rasks latest year recounted by Henrichsen 1861 (and repeated by Jes-
persen 1918: 58 with a comment on the word build (danne) cf. below) may perhaps give us an
impression of how Rask saw himself: About a year before his death I found him with an as
far as I can recall Georgian bible in front of him working on such a grammatical topic and
when asked how he could do this without a dictionary or any other instrument or preliminary
work, he answered that he did not need anything else than the Lords prayer in a particular
language in order to build the morphological system of the language. Such was the expertise
he had accomplished. [Omtrent en Maaned fr hans Dd traf jeg ham endnu med en, saa
vidt jeg mindes, georgisk Bibel foran sig, sysselsat med et saadant grammatisk Arbeide, og da
jeg spurgte ham, hvorledes han bar sig ad dermed uden Ordbog og andet Hjelpemiddel eller
Forarbeide, svarede han, at han ikke behvede Andet end Fadervor i et Sprog for at danne
samme Sprogs Formlre. Saadan Frdighed havde han opnaaet, (Henrichsen 1861: 14)].
Editors Introduction *xxxix

plan arrived at which ensures comparability, while the applied part would cor-
respond to the various descriptions of single languages made according to the
plan, e.g., the description of Sanskrit outlined above.
Rask underlines a demand for an extensive knowledge of languages and
makes fun of predecessors who demonstrably did not have that. As we have
seen, he was himself eager to analyze all (kinds of) languages he met on his way.
Furthermore, he seems to have been well aware of the artificiality of any delimi-
tation of languages (cf. the discussion on pages 2829 of the translation below),
but still demands that the practicing linguist analyze each language on its own
terms. In this he is more Humboldtian26 (or structuralist?) than one would ex-
pect of one of the founders of Indo-European comparative philology, cf. also his
concept of the structure and inner essence of a language (p. 33 and again p. 36).
The demand for structural analysis is basic to the proposition that seems to
have made Rask the first to state that lexical correspondences were secondary,
grammatical similarities primary, in the investigation of genetic correspondenc-
es between languages. This was his claim to fame according to Pedersen, and one
must admit that the case is well argued. But from a modern perspective, Rasks
insistence that language mixing may result in simplification, his bifurcation of
the lexicon into the basic vocabulary and lexicon for special purposes, whether
they be scientific or relating to commerce or politeness (pp. 34-35), and his ideas
of universal laws of sound change (4546) are equally thrilling. Did he really
write that? Yes he did, just study the text below!

4. Notes on the translator Niels Ege

Niels Ege was born in 1927, the youngest of three brothers, in rbk, Funen,
where his father practiced as a medical doctor. He graduated in 1944 from the
local gymnasium as the youngest student in the country and at the same time the
student with the highest marks. He immediately took up studies at the Univer-
sity of Copenhagen, at first at the Faculty of Law but soon transferred to com-
parative Indo-European philology with Louis Hjelmslev as his chosen professor.
Niels Ege distinguished himself early on as one of Hjelmslevs brightest stu-
dents and contributed a much admired piece to the Festschrift presented to his
teacher on his 50th birthday (Recherches structurales, 1949). In this paper, which

26. Actually, Humboldt approached Rask in a letter from Schloss Tegel of 25 August 1826
on the occasion of his son in law going to Denmark (Letters II: 184-186). There is no indica-
tion of an answer, but that might have been conveyed by word of mouth by the son in law, of
course.
*xl Editors Introduction

is actually the first one in the whole collection which also includes papers by
distinguished scholars such as Roman Jakobson and mile Benveniste, Ege dis-
cusses a Saussurean problem, that of the arbitrariness of the linguistic sign. He
courageously, and to my mind convincingly, argues that Benveniste had misun-
derstood Saussure. At the time, he had only studied linguistics for five years. He
was thus an immediate success.
He was, however, considerably delayed in finishing his studies: the process
of his taking the final magister exam started in 1953 and only ended in 1957, due
to his already by then highly developed perfectionism coupled with the atro-
cious demands that the study of Indo-European linguistics at the University of
Copenhagen made on its practitioners. A student who wanted to pass his ma-
gister exam had to master all branches of Indo-European. As we all know, this
is well-nigh impossible. In addition, thorough knowledge of a non-Indo-Euro-
pean language was required. In consequence, Hjelmslev actually only graduated
four students as magisters of Comparative Indo-European Philology during his
entire career as a university professor of linguistics at the University of Copen-
hagen (19371965).
Already before the long march towards a final degree started, Ege seems to
have been desperately in doubt as to his abilities and his standing. He wrote to
Eli Fischer-Jrgensen (19112010), then reader in phonetics, and expressed his
concerns and even seems to have complained that he had had too little attention
from Louis Hjelmslev (Letter from EFJ of 21 July 1952, in the Ege archives). Eli
Fischer-Jrgensen wrote a sensitive and sensible reply. She explained Hjelmslevs
life-long adversity to giving advice to his students, particularly if they did not
seek it themselves, and urged him to push forward and to confront his native
penchant for self-criticism, which, as she points out, had probably been nour-
ished by his studies at the local school (actually the same one she had attended)
where he had found no competition for his talent. Throughout she delicately
used herself to illustrate parallels in their careers (early success followed by seri-
ous doubts and unhappiness). In the end, she persuaded him to finish his studies
by writing the required M.A. thesis on the Bloomfield school. This paper, which
survives in the Ege archives, is interesting for its perspective: it is that of a glos-
sematicist looking at a related, competing, school of linguistic thought.
One reason for Eges delayed exam was that he had a job to do at the same
time, the intelligence work discussed below. Thus he had to choose between a
career at the military and a career in scholarly research. In 1962 he opted for the
latter. During his student years, Niels Ege had taken courses at Yale in 19511952
with Bernard Bloch (19091965) where he acquired an interest in Japanese.
Thus in 1962, he went to Japan where he taught Linguistics at the International
Editors Introduction *xli

Christian University in Tokyo. From this period dates a paper called Introduc-
tion to Glossematics which is all too little known (Ege 1965). Ege had unusual
gifts for teaching and readers who wish to understand glossematics, which ar-
guably is not easy to approach due to its revolutionary view of language and
linguistic categories, may well benefit from starting here.
From Tokyo, Ege went to Berkeley, California, where during his stay from
1965 to 1968 he was able to witness at close range the turmoil around the theory
of transformational generative grammar. When he returned to Denmark in 1968
to take up a scholarship with Sren Egerod (19231995), the famous Danish
Sinologist, he brought back news of the situation in the United States which was
highly appreciated, at least by his students, of which the present author was one.
When Louis Hjelmslev died in 1965, linguistic studies at the University of
Copenhagen had to be restructured completely. Through a series of accidents,
Niels Ege had to relinquish his research scholarship in order to become the
central person of the restructured linguistics program and, together with Una
Canger (b.1938), a student of Hjemslevs and Francis Whitfields (19161996),
one of its two main teachers. By then his self-criticism had culminated to the
extent that he published nothing at all; he had in fact turned into an inveterate
linguistic skeptic. Paradoxically, this made him a highly demanding and there-
fore brilliant teacher, since he was in no position to profess any eternal truths
about anything at all, while on the other hand he was able to argue pro et contra
about the advantage and disadvantage of any solution to any linguistic problem.
However, Niels Ege himself was not happy with his university work. He finally
left the university in order to work full-time at what he had been doing almost
since his first student years, i.e., military intelligence work. Starting when he
was at high school and broke German codes for the resistance movement in
Denmark, he had specialized in this line of work. For many years he worked as a
professional code-breaker for the Defense Intelligence Service and he enjoyed it.
Admittedly, there he found the spirit of a shared quest for truth that he missed
so much at the university!
Niels Ege never retired completely from intelligence work until forced to do
so by the illness that killed him in November 2002, but he did scale down his
work in order to devote himself to the planning, begun several years earlier, of
the publication of an English translation of Rasks prize essay, in celebration of
the 150th anniversary of its appearance in 1968 (cf. his Translators Note below).
Accompanied by the untiring support and the steady encouragement of Una
Canger, he was finally able to finish the task in 1993. Eges translation of the prize
essay was published as volume XXVI of the Travaux du Cercle Linguistique de
Copenhague, a book series founded by Hjelmslev. In his important Translators
*xlii Editors Introduction

Note, Ege writes in detail about the principles underlying the translation, the
difficulties he had encountered in the course of the translation process, and the
solutions adopted in translating the prize essay into English.
I am immensely grateful to be allowed to contribute to bringing the trans-
lation, reflecting Niels Eges and Rasks minds performing a spirited dialogue
across the divide of 175 years, to the attention of the linguistic world once again.

References

A. Works by Rasmus Rask27


Rask, Rasmus. 1811. Vejledning til det Islandske eller gamle Nordiske Sprog [Introduction to
the Icelandic or the old Norse language]. Kjbenhavn: Schubothe.
Rask, Rasmus. 1818a. Anvisning till Islndskan eller Nordiska Fornsprket. Stockholm: Wi-
borg. [Rasks own transl. and revision of the above into Swedish.]
Rask, Rasmus. 1818b. Undersgelse om det gamle Nordiske eller Islandske Sprogs Oprindelse
[Investigation of the old Norse language or the origins of Old Icelandic]. Kjbenhavn:
Gyldendal. [The original version of the prize essay.]
Rask, Rasmus. 1819. Om det gamla, kta Grekiska Uttalet. Swensk Litteraturtidning (Upp-
sala) No.47 (13 Nov. 1819), 737-747. [Swedish translation of the originals pages 162-166
= this editions pages 154-158.]
Rask, Rasmus. 1822. ber die thrakische Sprachklasse. Vergleichungstafeln der Europischen
Stammsprachen ed. by J[ohann] S[everin] Vater, 1-132.Halle/Saale: Rengersche Verlags-
buchhandlung. [German translation of the originals pages 159-302 = this editions pages
151-283.]
Rask, Rasmus. 1826. Forsg til en videnskabelig Dansk Retskrivningslre [An attempt at a sci-
entific treatment of Danish orthography]. Kjbenhavn: Popp.
Rask, Rasmus. 18341838. Samlede til dels forhen utrykte Afhandlinger. Ed. H. K. Rask. 3
vols. Kbenhavn: Popp. [Posthumous ed. (by his half brother) of almost all that Rask
published during his lifetime.]
Rask, Rasmus.1843. A Grammar of the Icelandic or Old Norse Tongue. Translated by Sir George
Webbe Dasent. London: William Pickering; Frankfort/Main: Jaegers Library. [Transla-
tion of Rask 1818a.]
Rask, Rasmus. 19321935. Udvalgte Afhandlinger [Selected papers]. Ed. Louis Hjelmslev.
Kbenhavn: Levin & Munksgaard. [Vol. I contains Hjelmslevs corrected version of Rask
1818b and both Pedersens and Hjelmslevs introductions; vol. III contains Hjelmslevs
commentaries to the selected papers, a terminological index and his complete bibliogra-
phy of printed works by Rask.]
Rask, Rasmus. 1941. Breve fra og til Rasmus Rask I-II [Letters from and to Rasmus Rask]. Ed.
Louis Hjelmslev. 2 vols. Kbenhavn: Ejnar Munksgaard (for the Danske Sprog- og Lit-
teraturselskab). [Cited as Letters I-II.]

27. Most of the works mentioned here are also mentioned in the bibliographies in Rask 1976.
Editors Introduction *xliii

Rask, Rasmus. 1968. Breve fra og til Rasmus Rask III,1-2 [Letters from and to Rasmus Rask
vol. III,1-2]. Ed. Marie Bjerrum. Kbenhavn: Munksgaards forlag (for the Danske Sprog-
og Litteraturselskab). [III,1 contains commentary to Letters I and II; III,2 contains person
and subject indexes and a complete catalogue of Rasks manuscripts.] [Cited as Letters
III,1-2.]
Rask, Rasmus. 1976. A Grammar of the Icelandic or Old Norse Tongue. [New edition of Rask
1843, with preface, introduction, bibliographies and notes by T. L. Markey.] (= Amster-
dam Classics in Linguistics, 2.) Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Rask, Rasmus. 1999. Photographic reprint of Rask 1818b as Foundations of Indo-European
Comparative Philology, 18001850 ed. Roy Harris, volume II. London & New York: Rout-
ledge.

B. Secondary sources
Abrahams, N[icolai] C[hristian] L[evin]. 1876. Meddelelser af mit Liv [Information about my
life]. Ed. by Arthur Abrahams. Kjbenhavn: Forlagsbureauet.
Amsterdamska, Olga. 1987. Schools of Thought: The development of linguistics from Bopp to
Saussure. Dordrecht: Reidel.
Andersen, Poul. 1937. Rasmus Rask. Fra Rask til Wimmer: Otte Foredrag om Modersmaals-
forskere i det 19. Aarhundrede udgivne af Selskab for Nordisk Filologi [Eight lectures on
students of the mother tongue from the 19th century published by the Society for Nordic
Philology], 7-33. Kbenhavn: Gyldendal.
Bjerrum, Marie. 1957. Hvorfor rejste Rask til Kaukasus og Indien? [Why did Rask go to the
Caucasus and India?]. Danske studier 1957.80-100.
Bjerrum, Marie. 1959. Rasmus Rasks afhandlinger om det danske sprog: Bidrag til forstelse af
Rasks tnkning [Rasmus Rasks treatises on the Danish language: Contributions to the
understanding of Rasks thinking]. Kbenhavn: Dansk videnskabs forlag.
Buescher, Hartmut. 2011. Catalogue of Sanskrit Manuscripts. Copenhagen, Det Kongelige
Bibliotek: Nias Press. [Catalogues of Oriental Manuscripts, Xylographs, etc. in Danish Col-
lections vol.7.]
Carey, W[illiam]. 1806. A Grammar of the Sungskrit Language. Serampore.
Christensen, Carl C. 1932a. Rasmus Rasks sidste Bopl og Skiftet efter ham [Rasmus Rasks
final abode and the administration of his estate]. Personalhistorisk Tidsskrift 53 (series
9 vol. 5): 49-52.
Christensen, Carl C. 1932b. Rasmus Rask, hans dd og hvad han efterlod sig. [Rasmus Rask,
his death and what he left to his heirs]. Danske Studier 1932.1-21.
Clark, Mathilde Walter. 2005. Tingenes uorden [The disorder of things]. Kbenhavn: Sam-
leren.
Colebrooke, H[enry] T[homas]. 1805. Grammar of the Sanscrit Language. Calcutta.
Colebrooke, H[enry] T[homas]. 1808. Cosha, or Dictionary of the Sanskrit Language by Amera
Sinha, with an English Interpretation and Annotations. Serampore.
Collinge, N[eville] E[dgar]. 1995. History of Comparative Linguistics. Concise History of the
Language Sciences: From the Sumerians to the Cognitivists ed. by E.F.K. Koerner & R.E.
Asher, 195-202. Oxford: Pergamon Press.
Diderichsen, Paul. 1960. Rasmus Rask og den grammatiske tradition. Studier over vendepunk-
tet i sprogvidenskabens historie [Rasmus Rask and the grammatical tradition: Studies on
the turning point in the history of linguistics]. (= Historisk-filosofiske Meddelelser udgivet
*xliv Editors Introduction

af Det Kongelige Danske Videnskabernes Selskab, 38:2.) Kbenhavn: Ejnar Munksgaard.


[German transl. by Monika Wesemann, Rasmus Rask und die grammatische Tradition.
Mnchen: Wilhelm Fink, 1976.]
Diderichsen, Paul. 1964. The Foundation of Comparative Linguistics: Revolution or con-
tinuation?. Diderichsen,Helhed og struktur, 340-363. Kbenhavn: Gad 1966. [Another
version in Hymes 1974: 277-306.]
Diderichsen, Paul. 1968. Sprogsyn og sproglig opdragelse [Views on language and linguistic
education]. Ed. by Niels Rosenkjr. Kbenhavn: Nyt Nordisk Forlag Arnold Busck.
Ege, Niels. 1949. Le signe linguistique est arbitraire. Recherches structurales 1949, 11-29. Co-
penhagen.
Ege, Niels. 1957. Leonard Bloomfields strukturlingvistiske teori, dens stilling i sprogvidenska-
bens historie og dens rolle i nutiden [The structural linguistic theory of Leonard Bloom-
field, its position in the history of linguistics and its role in contemporary linguistics].
Unpublished M.A. thesis, Ege archives, Copenhagen.
Ege, Niels. 1965. Introduction to Glossematics. Studies in Descriptive and Applied Linguistics
(= Bulletin of the Summer Institute of Linguistics, vol. III, August 1965), 17-41. Tokyo:
International Christian University.
Ege, Niels. 1980. Rask and Language Relatedness. Thrane et al., eds. 1980.33-37.
Fischer-Jrgensen, Eli. 1952. Letter to Niels Ege, 21 July 1952, sent from Bloomington, Indi-
ana. Ege archives, Copenhagen.
Forster, H[enry] P[itts]. 1810. Essay on the Principles of Sanscrit Grammar. Part 1 [no further
part was published]. Calcutta: Ferris & Co.
Frank, Othmar. 1823. Grammatica sanscrita, nunc primum in Germania. Leipzig: Friedrich
Fleischer.
Gregersen, Frans. 1980. Videnskabshistorisk empiri analyse af enkeltvrker. (Om Rasmus
Rasks danske retskrivningslre) [Empirical studies in the history of science analy-
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er i Anvendt og Matematisk Lingvistik 6.201-220. Kbenhavn: Institut for anvendt og
matematisk lingvistik, Kbenhavns Universitet.
Gregersen, Frans. 1987. The Conspiracy against Letters. Culture and History 2.80-95. Kben-
havn: Museum Tusculanum Press. (Repr. in Gregersen, Kbenhavnsk sociolingvistik, 33-
47. Oslo: Novus Press, 2009.)
Grimm, Jacob. 1822. Deutsche Grammatik. Part I, 2nd ed. Gttingen: Dieterich.
Henrichsen, R[udolph] J[ohannes] F[rederik]. 1861. Rasmus Rasks Skoleliv [Rasmus Rasks
school life]. Indbydelsesskrift til Afgangsexamen og Hovedexamen i Odense Cathedrals-
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Hjelmslev, Louis. 1932. Udgiverens forord [The editors preface]. Rask 1932: ix-xii.
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Afzelius [Rasmus Rask and Sweden 18121818, elucidated by his letters to A. A. Afze-
lius]. Nordisk Tidsskrift 9:6. 445-456.
Hjelmslev, Louis. 1951. Commentaires sur la vie et luvre de Rasmus Rask. Confrences
de lInstitut de linguistique de lUniversit de Paris 10.143-57. (Repr. in Hjelmslev, Essais
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Nordisk Sprog- og Kulturforlag, 1973.)
Humboldt, Wilhelm von. 1822. Ueber die in der Sanskrit-Sprache durch die Suffixa tw und
ya gebildeten Verbalformen. Wilhelm von Humboldts Gesammelte Schriften ed. Albert
Leitzmann et al., vol. IV, 360-419. Berlin: B. Behr, 1905.
Editors Introduction *xlv

Hymes, Dell H., ed. 1974 . Studies in the History of Linguistics: Traditions and paradigms.
Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
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quam in legum patriarum tabulis aliisque vi medii scriptis obvia explicantur, et ex dia-
lectis cognatis, Moesogothica, Anglo-saxonica, Alemannica, Islandica ceterisque Gothic et
Celt originis illustrantur. 2 vols. Upsali: Typis Edmannianis.
Jacobsen, Henrik Galberg. 2010. Ret og skrift: Officiel dansk retskrivning 17392005, [Right
and writing: Official Danish orthography 17392005], 1-2. (= University of Southern
Denmark Studies in Scandinavian Languages and Literatures 95 = Dansk Sprognvns
skrifter, 42). Odense: Syddansk Universitetsforlag.
Jespersen, Otto. 1918. Rasmus Rask i Hundredret efter hans hovedvrk [Rasmus Rask at the
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Jrgensen, J[ens] Normann 2010. Languaging: Nine years of poly-lingual development of a
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ence to the study of sounds]. Kbenhavn: J. H. Schultz. (Photographic reprint, together
with Pedersen 1924. rhus: Arkona 1978.)
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Kbenhavn: Gyldendal. (Photographic reprint, together with Pedersen 1916): rhus:
Arkona, 1978.)
*xlvi Editors Introduction

Pedersen, Holger. 1931. Linguistic Science in the 19th Century. Transl. John Webster Spargo.
Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. (Paperback reprint as The Discovery of Lan-
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Editors Introduction *xlvii

Thomason, Sarah Grey & Terrence Kaufman. 1988. Language Contact, Creolization and Ge-
netic Linguistics. Berkeley: University of California Press.
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8. April 1902.) (Repr. in Thomsen, Samlede Afhandlinger I: 1-106. Kbenhavn: Gylden-
dal, 1919.)
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from an original compilation prepared by learned natives for the College of Fort Wil-
liam. Calcutta: Printed by Ph. Pereira at the Hindustanee Press.
Wimmer, Ludvig F[rants] A[dalbert]. 1887. Rasmus Kristian Rask: Mindetale ved
Universitetets Reformationsfest p hundredrsdagen efter Rasks Fdsel [Rasmus Kristian
Rask: A commemorative speech at the University celebration of the Reformation at the
occasion of his centenary]. Kbenhavn: Gyldendalske Boghandel.
Yates, William. 1820. Grammar of the Sanscrit Language on a new plan. Calcutta.
rsted, Hans Chr[istian]. 1813/1815. Resum of Rask (1818a). Oversigt over Det Kongelige
Danske Videnskabernes Selskabs Forhandlinger og det Medlemmers Arbeider de sidste to
Aar [Summary of negotiations of the Royal Danish Academy of Science and Letters and
a review of the works published by its members], 19-24. Copenhagen.
Translator's Not e

It i s a curiou s fac t tha t Rasmu s Rask's famous


book o n th e origi n o f th e Icelandi c language , a pio -
neering wor k o f scholarshi p i f eve r ther e wa s one ,
has neve r reall y bee n accessibl e t o th e worl d o f
learning - le t alon e th e publi c a t larg e - outsid e o f
Scandinavia.
Rask wrote hi s boo k i n Danish , an d unti l no w n o
attempt ha s bee n mad e t o mak e i t generall y availabl e
by havin g al l o f i t translate d int o on e o f th e majo r
languages* ).

More tha n a quarte r o f a centur y ha s passe d


since I firs t conceive d th e ide a o f fillin g thi s ga p b y
providing a ful l translatio n o f Rask's Undersegelse
into English . M y origina l pla n wa s t o hav e th e t r a n s -
lation read y b y th e 150 t h anniversar y o f th e publi -
cation o f th e origina l work , i n 1968 , bu t circumstance s
prevented m e fro m completin g th e projec t i n tim e fo r
this.
In addition , th e mor e I though t abou t it , th e
more I cam e t o realiz e tha t I ha d se t a n impossibl e
task fo r myself . I f a n undertakin g o f thi s kin d wer e
to hav e an y raison d'tre at all , th e man y crucia l
issues ope n t o interpretatio n i n Rask's original tex t

*) The only extensive excerpt ever to be translated i s the chapter on Thracian, whic h wa s published
in German by J S Vater in 1822.
*l Translators Note

should remai n equall y ope n afte r havin g bee n con -


verted int o English , somethin g whic h appeare d v i r t u -
ally impossible .
So i n th e en d I decide d t o shelv e th e entir e p r o -
ject.

Then som e year s ag o n a ange r an d th e in -


guistic ircl e o f openhage n prevaile d o n m e t o
reconsider, wit h a generou s offe r t o publis h m y ori -
ginal manuscrip t onc e i t ha d bee n completed , an d giv -
ing m e a fre e han d t o g o abou t i t an y wa y I pleased .
Even so , I wa s quit e reluctan t t o accep t thei r
invitation, althoug h I finall y did . I stil l ha d a vivi d
recollection o f th e multitud e o f intractabl e problem s
which I ha d r u n int o year s befor e - tryin g t o i n t e r -
p r et Rask without interpretin g him , a s i t were .

Many year s ag o I ha d th e opportunit y t o com -


ment o n th e problem s encountere d i n translatin g
Rask* ), an d a s thes e observation s ar e a s vali d no w a s
they wer e then , I tak e th e libert y o f reproducin g
them her e onc e mor e

... I n spit e o f th e ponderousnes s o f Rask' s styl e - esp . i n th e beginnin g - hi s


phraseology i s ofte n casua l an d eve n anacolouthic , an d man y o f hi s idiom s soun d
quite eccentri c i n Danis h also . I have trie d t o preserv e th e flavo r o f th e origina l a s
faithfully a s possible , s o i f yo u fin d th e languag e awkwar d i n man y places , i t is no t al l
due t o th e translator' s shortcomings . I have normalize d suc h thing s onl y wher e th e
English reade r woul d otherwis e b e face d wit h a n ambiguit y no t presen t i n th e original .
onversely, I hav e strive n t o preserv e al l the equivoca l expression s o f th e origina l an d
to impar t a minimu m o f interpretatio n t o the text .
Still, a coupl e o f almos t insurmountabl e problem s aros e a s fa r a s specifi c termi -
nology i s concerned. I n all suc h case s I have trie d t o kee p th e sam e Englis h equiva -

*) ette r to Robert usterlitz ovember 2, 196 .


Translators Note li*

lent i n all occurrences, bu t compromises wer e inevitable .


E.g., Dan . l gts a mean s bot h 'kinship ' an d 'relationship' . I am no t a t al l sur e
that Rask always make s an y distinctio n betwee n thes e tw o meanings , an d th e choic e
of 'kinship ' clearl y preempt s th e issue . n th e othe r hand , 'relationship ' i s reall y a
great dea l vague r tha n th e Dan . l gts a whic h i s almos t exactl y th e sam e a s
Germ. er andts a t I coul d possibl y hav e use d 'relatedness' i n a t leas t on e
instance I rendere d i t b y 'affinity' . o r th e adjective esl gtet I hav e preferre d
'related' instea d o f 'akin ' t o balanc e thing s u p somewha t wherea s disse rogs
l gts a ca n hardl y b e rendere d 'th e relationshi p o f thes e languages ' an d stil l mea n
'kinship', th e phras e disse rog ere esi gtede i f rendere d 'thes e language s ar e
related' i s as ambiguou s i n English a s i t is in Danish , whic h i s exactly what we want .
ther difficul t term s ar e ta e ta es rog an d r nds rog Rask uses
ta e both abou t language s an d people s jus t a s i n German) . o on e Englis h
word ca n handl e al l th e meaning s i n whic h thi s wor d occur s I hav e use d 'stock' ,
'group', 'tribe' , 'stem' , an d 'strain ' i n variou s passages . I have rendere d ta es rog
by 'ancestra l language' , an d r nds rog b y basi c language' . Esp . th e las t on e I am
not a t al l happ y with , bu t neithe r 'fundamenta l language ' no r 'bas e language ' no r
'original language ' wil l do r nds ra e i s well-establishe d i n Englis h linguisti c
literature, bu t ha s eogrammaria n associations , an d 'underlyin g language ' ha s som e
undesirable moder n connotations .
My guidelin e i n resolvin g thes e problem s ha s constantl y bee n t o avoi d term s
which woul d tak e side s i n th e disput e concernin g whethe r Rask' s finding s ar e
primarily o f a historica l o r a systemati c natur e cf. the jelmslev-Diderichsen discus -
sion).
The prope r translatio n o f Rask' s erensste else an d o erensste ende i s
another trick y problem . I n spit e o f m y effort s I hav e ha d t o translat e thes e word s
alternately b y 'correspondence' , 'corresponding , an d b y 'agreement' , 'agreeing' ,
respectively th e adjectiv e I have rendere d b y 'equivalent ' i n at leas t one instance .
I hav e ha d grea t difficult y als o wit h rog or larer rog or laring ' anguage
explainer', 'languag e explaining ' o r 'explanation ' ar e hardl y acceptabl e i n English .
'Etymologist' an d 'etymology ' ar e rule d out , becaus e Rask introduces hi s term s i n a n
effort t o ge t awa y fro m th e connotation s o f dilettantis m the n generall y associate d wit h
'etymology . I have finall y settle d fo r 'languag e analyzer ' an d 'languag e analysis ' o r
'analyzing', althoug h I a m no t to o please d wit h the m either . ' inguisti c analysis '
sounds bette r bu t i s entirel y ou t o f place . owever , wha t Rask meant wa s precisel y
that goo d etymolog y offere d th e onl y kin d o f explanation o f wh y wor d i s wha t i t i s
and i n a sense , o f course , h e wa s right) . T o eve n thing s out , again , I have rendere d
the ver b or are an d th e nou n or laring outside o f th e nou n phrase s mentione d
above) b y 'explain ' an d 'explanation ' respectivel y - eve n whe n ther e i s tal k abou t
*lii Translators Note

etymological explanation . hereve r th e word s 'etymology' , 'etymological ' etc .


occur i n th e Englis h text , thi s mean s tha t th e Danis h equivalent s wer e t ologi
et o ogis etc.) .
orden nordis ord oer are als o difficult . Th e easies t thin g i s t o us e
'Scandinavia', '-an s) ' throughout , excep t tha t w e woul d stil l hav e t o refe r t o th e
language a s ' l d orse ' rathe r tha n ' l d Scandinavian ' cf. the titl e o f th e essay , i n
particular) ye t w e canno t ver y wel l tal k abou t 'peopl e o f th e orth ' o r ' orthmen' , o r
even ' orsemen ' exc . fo r th e Vikin g period) . I am afrai d tha t m y hesitatio n her e i s
reflected e.g . i n nordis being translate d no w b y ' ordic' , no w b y 'Scandinavian ' a
word also , incidentally , use d b y Rask in a fe w places) .
In a fe w case s Englis h an d Danis h a t leas t a s Rask uses it ) see m luckil y t o g o
hand i n hand . E.g. , Dan . Udledelse Udiedning ar e use d exactl y lik e Engl , 'derivation '
both abou t th e specifi c morphologica l proces s o r phenomenon , an d abou t genera l
inference an d deduction .
I d o no t otherwis e wan t t o peste r yo u wit h detail s concernin g th e specia l
problems I have had . I might jus t poin t ou t tha t Rask, purist tha t h e was , frequentl y
replaces Gree k an d ati n word s wit h Danis h word s o r Danis h loan-translation s fro m
German) i n a n idiosyncrati c way . E.g. , a sondret whic h normall y mean s 'isolated ' cf.
German), i s use d b y Rask in th e meanin g o f 'abstract o n th e othe r hand , a r dt
normally 'interrupted ' cf. again German) , i n Rask means 'isolated' . rogl rer i s no t
'Sprachlehrer' the I analysi s i s rogl re r no t rog l rer and th e wor d mean s
'grammarian'. nd l delse otherwise 'influence' ) i s 'relevance' nstig usually
'artificial') i s 'complex' ndretning Germ . 'Einrichtung') is 'system' etc . etc . Th e
precise impor t o f thes e an d simila r word s become s clea r onl y afte r repeate d occur -
rences an d upo n carefu l check s wit h th e context s involved . I am sur e tha t th e Danis h
reader o f Rask of on e hundre d an d fift y year s ag o wa s puzzle d b y thes e thing s also
but i t i s impossibl e t o transpos e th e ai r o f puris m whic h h e mus t hav e discerne d i n
these usage s int o English , wher e th e literal translation s woul d als o b e Greek- ati n
words. herea s th e Danis h reade r soo n learn s t o b e o n hi s guar d whe n a native
word i n Rask appears i n a n od d meaning , ther e i s n o wa y o f markin g th e direc t
English equivalent s correspondingly , an d th e resul t woul d b e ver y confusing . I real -
ize tha t whe n I render nstig by 'complex ' instea d o f 'artificial' , th e Englis h reade r n o
longer ha s an y chanc e o f interpretin g thi s ter m a s implyin g a valu e judgment . Som e
of these decision s wer e difficult , bu t they ha d t o be made .

I hav e considere d variou s way s ou t o f thi s quan -


dary providin g a n appendi x wit h runnin g transla -
t o r ' s notes o r makin g a complet e inde x o f al l th e
crucial term s a s the y no w appea r i n th e Englis h v e r -
v

Translators Note liii*

sion, listing thei r Danis h equivalent s - no t alway s th e


same - fo r eac h particula r occurrence .
Eventually, I settle d fo r a 'simple ' translation ,
leaving i t u p t o th e reade r t o decid e fo r himsel f
whether h e want s to , o r need s to , refe r bac k t o th e
original i n orde r t o resolv e som e moo t point .
My mai n worr y i n no t offerin g anythin g b y wa y
of explanatio n o r justificatio n o f m y choices , i s no t
whether I di d mak e th e righ t decisio n i n a particula r
instance whic h perhap s I di d not) , bu t r a t h e r tha t
someone migh t automaticall y t r u s t m e no t t o hav e mad e
the wron g choice .

The Englis h versio n presente d her e i s base d o n


the admirabl e definitiv e editio n o f Rask's original wor k
provided b y oui s jelmslev in 19 2 .
There ar e man y obstacle s t o readin g Rask' s tex t
over an d abov e th e languag e barrier . fte r all , th e
world looke d ver y differen t 1 5 year s ago .
hen readin g throug h thi s versio n o f th e n es
tigation o t e rigin o t e ld orse anybod y i n t e r -
ested i n understandin g Rask' s wor k i s therefor e
strongly urge d t o consul t th e companio n volum e i n
German t o jelmslev' s editio n o f th e Undersegelse fro m
19 2.
ith a vie w t o this , I hav e adde d reference s
throughout, i n squar e bracket s j , t o th e appropriat e
page number s o f th e Danis h tex t o f th e Undersegelse
in th e jelmslev edition, whic h hav e bee n use d als o a s
reference point s i n th e Germa n languag e commentary .

This translatio n woul d neve r actuall y hav e see n


the ligh t o f day , ha d i t no t bee n fo r n a anger' s
vi

*liv Translators Note

support and unwaverin g t r u s t i n me . l l credi t goe s


to he r i f th e resul t o f he r relentless , bu t forbearin g
prompting shoul d b e foun d t o b e worthwhile .
I woul d lik e t o ad d a not e o f appreciatio n o f th e
assistance give n t o m e b y ocomotiv e Softwar e i n p r o -
viding th e specia l printe r an d fon t file s needed .

December 11 , 199 iels Ege


Investigation of the Origin of
the Old Norse
or
Icelandic Language
by

RASMUS KRISTIAN RASK

Translated by
Niels Ege
re a e

e resent or to i a e de oted se eral


ears o la orio s olle ting and st d ing as inall
o iled d ring sta in eland and t en e sent to
o en agen in e a ora le dge ent o t e o al
o iet o ien es and etters as an i ortant reason or
is to a e it lis ed o e er as not ort nate
eno g to a e t is reali ed ntil long a ter de art re
ro nati e o ntr in t e all o i in t e
s er o en o tained a o al s ention or t e
li ation at in s ite o t is it no a ears in s
orre t or is d e to een interest in t e atter and
riends i to ards e ersonall on t e art o ro essors
er and agn sen a sen e ro i ortant oo
olle tions d ring t e inal o ilation as ell as ro t e
la e o rinting d ring its li ation ade it i ossi le
or e to e end and olis se eral assages as o ld
ot er ise a e anted to e ene olent reader is as ed

is as also re ented e ro sing a er interesting olle tion o ord si ilarities et een


t e ra ian lang ages and t e elandi o iled a learned elander o nt re e t J .
Johnsonius, i t is enera le old an lent to e to ta e o e to en ar e a se alread ad
dis at ed essa en isited i s it a ens an o is o arisons orres ond to ine
des ite t e a t t at e ad no no ledge atsoe er o ea ot er's or or idea e e t in so ar as
e ad dis la ed is o inion and s olars i in t e e ellent ord inde to is atin edition o la
rinted or s lis ed later a e not een a le to tili e eit er e ost i ortant o t ose
a e seen and ad are Dr. Jamieson's ' erme s Scythicu s o r the radica l affinitie s o f th e Gree k an d
atin languages to the Gothic', Edinburgh 181 , and es e iall Disqvisiti o de nominibus in ingva
therefore, not to take me to task too severely for trifling
matters or some expressions which may possibly be slips of
the pen, provided he finds my method in general correct, and
the results of the investigation well founded and true. As
it happens, I have not, in the course of continued
investigation, changed my mind concerning any main point,
although I have made corrections in some minor matters;
e.g. it has since appeared doubtful to me whether the s
undoubtedly the same as the Gepids, have anything to do
with the name of the Jutes (p. 149), because their true old
name, tar is so different and er or te r in Denmark
are mentioned so rarely and in sources so unreliable that
nothing certain can be concluded from it - unless perhaps
that some Vids (Letts) followed the great Gothic tribes
(Guddai) which poured into Scandinavia from the Prussian
coasts; just as a number of Jutes accompanied Angles and
Saxons during their migration to England. Concerning the
Asiatic (Persian-Indian) languages (not the Oriental), it still
seems to me very premature to pass any final judgement.
Persian certainly has much similarity with Danish, but it is
a new language which goes back to the introduction of
Islamism, just as Danish goes back to the Reformation in its
entire present form and state. Besides, Persian is highly
mixed and presumably thereby acquired its very simple
system, with no true declension, and thus cannot explain the

Sviogothica luci s visus c., auctor e J . allenberg, Regni Sveci istoriographo .


ol i
III

complex structure of our ancient language. True, I know


Frank's opinion according to which the more complex
languages should be explained from the simpler , and thus
Sanskrit derived from Persian; but by this rule Latin
should be derived from French, Icelandic from Danish, etc.,
which is directly contrary to the usual course of nature in
the change of human language. Moreover, the Slavic and
Lettic language classes can be considered as connecting links
without which any comparison is bound to fail to a con-
siderable extent. Sanskrit itself seems also to have had
several very notable periods which may almost be considered
separate languages. But that which is to be compared with
our fathers' idiom, the Icelandic language, ought at any rate
to be earlier than the Christian era, because we have not
borrowed anything from the regions East of Tanais since
Odin immigrated. Now, if we bear in mind that it is modern
German and Danish with which Persian and the Indi c lan-
guages are indiscriminately compared, usually without any
regard to Slavonic and Lithuanian - i t is easily realized how
completely untrustworthy the result is bound to be. It is
from Icelandic and the oldest Germanic languages : Anglo-
Saxon, Frisian, Alemannic, Moesogothic, that we should
start, and it is through Slavonic, Lithuanian and Greek we
should compare these with the Caucasian languages, the Zend
language and Sanskrit. To the first mentioned I have now
devoted more than twelve years of continuous study; the
procurement of rather more detailed information about the
East European and Caucasian languages than was possible to
IV

o tain in o n o ntr is t e r ose o t e o rne


i a no nderta ing t e good ort ne is granted
e on s ess l o letion o o rne to see
nati e land again t ere ore o e to e a le to ro ide a
ore satis a tor ontin ation o t is in estigation
It is entirely owin g to our Majesty' s trul y Roya l protection
and generosity both towards the sciences in general, and especially
towards everythin g aimin g a t th e glorificatio n o f ou r nativ e land ,
as wel l a s th e enlightenmen t an d enhancemen t o f ou r mothe r
tongue, tha t thi s modes t wor k i s bein g published . ein ga
contribution t o th e investigatio n o f th e extractio n an d kinshi p o f
the old Danish tongue the language now called Icelandic fro m th e
country i n whic h i t lives) , and thu s als o o f th e Danis h people , t o
other people s i n Easter n an d Souther n Europe , i t coul d not b e
indifferent t o th e Danis h ing . Tha t i s wh y th e author , thoug h
absent, confidentl y venture s t o submi t i t t o th e Thron e wit h
sincerest gratitude and warmest wishes for the ing and ountry.

our Majesty's mos t humble and


loyal subjec t

as
T

T E I G .
Investigation
o
the rigin
of

The ld orse
or

Icelandic anguage

rize Essay Rewarded by the Royal


Danish Society of Sciences and etters
written by

as
ontents

Introduction pag e1

irst hapte r n Etymolog y i n Genera l 1 1

Second hapte r n Icelandi c an d t h e Gothi c


c l a s s o f language s 5

Third hapte r n t h e sourc e o f t h e Gothi c

languages, esp . Icelandi c 0

omparison 1 . wit h Greenlandi c 2

2. - elti c

.- asqu e8 9

.- inni c9 1

5. - Slavi c 11

6. - etti c1

.- Thracia n 15 1

8. - th e siati c language s . . 28
rigin of the ld orse
or Icelandic anguage
Introduction

The onl y thin g t h e huma n min d actuall y experience s an d


knows about , withou t an y a r t i f i c i a l aids , i s t h a t whic h i s
d i r e c t l y a t hand . Th e masse s experienc e nothin g bu t
unknown effects , se e nothin g bu t isolated , uniqu e phenomena
they d o no t understan d t h e i r causes , no r d o the y suspec t
t h e i r consequences . heav y curtai n i s draw n ove r t h e
events o f t h e future , a s t h e sayin g s o a p t l y goes onl y t h e
keenest visio n ma y manag e a n occasiona l penetratin g glance ,
but eve n t h a t require s a mos t accurat e knowledg e o f p a s t
events a s wel l a s a mos t extensiv e familiarit y wit h t h o s e o f
the presen t th e l a t t e r t e l l s u s wha t cause s operat e now ,
t h e forme r t h e manne r i n whic h the y usuall y operate an d
on t h i s b a s i s w e ma y the n finall y t o som e exten t infe r w h a t
t h e effect s wil l b e i n t h e cas e o f t h e future . u t surel y
t h e p a s t i s covere d b y n o veil , someon e wil l argue , quit e
t h e c o n t r a r y , i t i s illuminate d b y t h e t o r c h o f h i s t o r y , an d
whereas w e hav e n o gif t t o prophes y an d f o r e t e l l wha t i s
yet t o come , w e d o hav e a memor y wit h whic h t o remembe r
what h a s gon e by abou t t h i s , then , knowledg e i s no t
wanting. T h i s ma y wel l appea r t o b e so , bu t whe n w e tak e
a close r loo k a t t h e s e source s o f ou r knowledg e abou t t h e
past, w e soo n discove r t h e i r inadequacy . obody , howeve r
excellent 16 h i s memory , remember s everythin g t h a t h a s
happened i n h i s entir e life , muc h l e s s wha t h i s p a r e n t s ma y
have t o l d hi m fro m t h e i r age an d t h u s g r a d u a l l y l e s s an d
2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

l e s s t h e f u r t h e r bac k w e go . fte r a coupl e o f centurie s


have passed , a l l actua l recollectio n i s gone , onl y a haz y an d
often obscur e legen d ma y s t i l l whispe r t o u s a fain t messag e
from thos e d i s t a n t d a y s - eve n grante d a l l wen t wel l fo r
family an d nation . u t suppos e instea d t h a t wa r d i s p e r s e s
t h e famil y an d give s t h e peopl e o t h e r m a t t e r s t o thin k
about the n wha t become s o f thos e account s o f th e p a s t
which memor y shoul d preserv e fo r u s True , histor y
extends i t s beneficen t effect s beyon d t h i s , bu t i t to o i s
incomplete. I f w e t r y t o observ e recen t event s i n t h e l i g h t
of h i s t o r y , w e a r e someho w blinde d b y it i f w e loo k
f a r t h e r away , t h e l i g h t i s s o fain t t h a t w e ofte n discer n n o
more tha n t h e outlin e o f certai n figures . Th e tru e
connections betwee n event s a r e t h r e a d s s o fin e t h a t w e a r e
r a r e l y abl e t o discove r an d follo w the m - eve n i n t h e
b r i g h t e s t h i s t o r i c a l epoch an d a s w e g o f u r t h e r an d
f u r t h e r bac k i n o r d e r t o t r a v e l t h r o u g h an d surve y a l l p a s t
time t o som e exten t a t l e a s t , t h e l i g h t fade s mor e an d more ,
t h e t i e s betwee n event s disappea r completely , t h e figure s
themselves becom e mor e obscure , an d i n th e en d nothin g bu t
unknown an d indistinc t mythica l figure s d r i f t t o w a r d us
behind these , finally , w e grop e completel y i n t h e dark , a
darkness certainl y no t muc h b e t t e r tha n t h a t whic h cover s
up t h e futur e - an d ye t ho w muc h f a r t h e r i s t h e wa y s t i l l
left fro m t h e t w i l i g h t o f myt h unti l t h e ver y beginnin g o f
time i t s e l f I s i t r e a l l y an y s h o r t e r tha n t h e distanc e
from t h e presen t momen t t o t h e en d o f a l l tim e u t ar e
these p i t c h - d a r k span s o f tim e r e a l l y t h a t lon g , someon e
will ask . ha t i s unknow n i s difficul t t o a s s e s s , s o i t i s
not s u r p r i s i n g t h a t man y peopl e hav e entertaine d peculia r
notions abou t t h i s m a t t e r . Som e hav e 1 considere d bot h
of t h e s e span s t o b e ver y s h o r t why , a numbe r o f peopl e
have calculate d t h e en d o f t h e world , an d t h e worl d h a s
a l r e a d y survive d a numbe r o f suc h t e r m s . t h e r s hav e j u s t
a s accuratel y calculate d i t s beginning , and , a s w e a l l know ,
I TR D TI

t h e r e a r e s t i l l thos e wh o coun t t h e i r y e a r s fro m suc h a


creation o f t h e world . Migh t no t bot h p a r t i e s b e equall y
g r e a t fools , bot h o f the m wishin g t o measur e t h e
immeasurable, accuratel y t o fil l i n an d describ e w h a t i s
completely unknown , wher e a mer e glimpse , howeve r faint ,
would a l r e a d y b e a n achievemen t I thin k so . u t doe s
not t h e ibl e a c t u a l l y t e l l t h e s t o r y o f th e creatio n o f t h e
world I f so , d o w e not , i n fact , hav e a continuou s
h i s t o r i c a l accoun t fro m t h e beginnin g o f tim e unti l t h i s
moment nl y t h e mos t feebleminde d ca n argu e lik e t h a t .
True, i n t h e Jewis h account , t h e i r nationa l god , Jehovah ,
mightier tha n t h e god s o f a l l o t h e r nations , create d
everything, endin g wit h a huma n coupl e wit h ebre w name s
from who m h a s sprun g a l l o f mankin d - bu t especiall y t h e
J e w s , i n direc t lin e o f descent . owever , whe n w e g o t o t h e
Egyptians, t e a r e t h e o l d e s t o f a l l nations . roceedin g t o
t h e Greeks , w e fin d t h a t t h e deitie s procreatin g o r
procreated b y a r e Greek , an d t h a t i n Thebe s human s
shoot ou t o f t h e ground t h e t t i c s a r e o . If w e
t u r n t o I t a l y whic h w e kno w h a s s o l i t t l e origina l an d
peculiar t o it , an s an d at rn s live d t h e r e , an d w e fin d
origines t h e r e too . I f w e g o t o Scandinavia , din i s t h e
one wh o create d eave n an d E a r t h an d t h e f i r s t huma n
couple, s r an d la wit h ordi c names , fro m who m t h e
e n t i r e huma n rac e i s descended . hy , eve n Greenland ,
however unparadisiaca l i t ma y appear , t u r n s ou t t o b e t h e
f i r s t an d t r u e domicil e o f mankind , th e Greenlanders t h e
t r u e huma n beings , nn it an d o t h e r nation s nothin g bu t a n
insignificant, degenerat e broo d owin g t h e i r genesi s t o t h e
Greenlanders. Indeed, i t i s a well-know n 18 fac t t h a t
every sovereig n peopl e o f importanc e t h u s h a s i t s s e p a r a t e
account o f t h e origi n o f t h e world , accordin g t o whic h t h e i r
own god s create d th e world , t h e i r ow n countr y i s t h e prope r
one, or , a s i t were , t h e cente r o f t h i s e a r t h , the y t h e m -
selves t h e origina l p r o g e n i t o r s o f mankind . I n t h i s the y a l l
RIGI T E D RS E G G E

agree otherwis e eac h t e l l s i t i n i t s ow n fashion , n o tw o


accounts agreein g o n t h e time , t h e manner , o r t h e
circumstances. Th e Jewis h versio n h a s i t s a b s u r d i t i e s a s
much a s an y other , e.g . t h e fac t t h a t Jehova h spend s si x
d a y s an d the n h e ta es a rest s u r e l y t h i s i s a n imag e o f
t h e rienta l r a t h e r tha n t h e deit y r t h e fac t t h a t h e
c r e a t e s Da y an d igh t befor e t h e sun , t h a t t h e sk y i s a
f o r t r e s s separatin g t h e w a t e r s , t h e r e bein g w a t e r abov e o r
over t h e sky , som e o f whic h Jehova h subsequentl y send s
down b y openin g t h e floodgate s o f eave n s o a s t o l e t t h e
Deluge submerg e t h e e a r t h . T o an y ope n min d a l l t h i s an d
much mor e b e a r s t h e mar k o f t h e fancie s o f primitiv e man' s
mind r a t h e r tha n o f divin e revelation . I t ha s a s littl e
h i s t o r i c a l w o r t h a s t h e fable s o f an y o f t h e o t h e r nation s
about t h e origi n o f t h e world . I t doe s no t belon g t o t h e
h i s t o r i c a l typ e o f m y t h s a t a l l i t i s wha t th e Jew s
surmise abou t somethin g the y hav e neve r actuall y
experienced, an y mor e tha n an y o t h e r people . l l suc h mus t
accordingly b e considere d philosophica l fabricatio n an d no t
mythical legen d a t a l l . onsequently , w e canno t expec t eve n
t h e s l i g h t e s t , faintes t glimps e o f h i s t o r y o r o f anythin g
h i s t o r i c a l i n an y o f t h i s thes e a r e simpl y a t t e m p t s b y t h e
ancient people s t o fil l i n an d t o t h r o w l i g h t o n t h e vast ,
dark span s o f t h e p a s t - a t t e m p t s whic h wer e boun d t o fail .
They hav e t r i e d t o concea l t h e i r ignoranc e - w e a r e a l l s o
r e l u c t a n t t o admi t i t - o r t o s a t i s f y t h e i r c u r i o s i t y abou t
m a t t e r s 19 which , a f t e r a l l , the y ha d n o possibl e way s o f
knowing no r o f exploring . T h a t i s wh y thes e conjecture s a r e
so interwove n wit h t h e o l d e s t mythica l legends t h a ti s
why, also , t h e perio d fro m t h e emergenc e o f t h e worl d t o
t h a t o f t h e p a r t i c u l a r natio n i s usuall y s o astonishingl y
s h o r t - i n fact , amon g t h e J e w s t h i s perio d h a s a c t u a l l y
come t o b e man y time s longe r tha n i t use d t o be , du e t o
some manifes t misunderstanding s concernin g t h e calculatio n o f
t h e y e a r s . Rathe r tha n leadin g u s t o ou r goal , then , t h e s e
I TR D TI 5

fabrications, a s a l s o th e hig h estee m whic h the y hav e


enjoyed r i g h t u p unti l ou r times , ma y serv e t o t e l l u s ho w
very fa r w e a r e fro m i t . o r i f nothin g wa s know n t o t h e
various people s themselve s i n t h e i r e a r l i e s t time s abou t t h e i r
own origi n an d extraction , bu t eac h r a t h e r believe d itsel f t o
be t h e o l d e s t o f a l l , sprun g fro m th e e a r t h o r eve n fro m
the god s - ho w fa r i t mus t b e indee d fro m t h a t mythica l
d a t e t o t h e t r u e an d f i r s t origi n o f eac h people , an d ho w
far fro m t h e r e t o t h a t o f mankin d n d eve n a t t h a t poin t
we a r e s t i l l no t a t t h e b i r t h o f tim e b y far . I t i s als o
very i n t e r e s t i n g t h a t a t t h e e a r l i e s t momen t w e catc h s i g h t
of an y t e r r i t o r y i n an y p a r t o f t h e worl d i n ancien t h i s t o r y
we fin d the m a l l full y inhabited . he n Jacob , wh y eve n
when braha m cam e t o Egypt , t h e r e wa s a l r e a d y a kingdo m
t h e r e . he n th e Greek s cam e t o olchis , th e hoenician s t o
frica, Spai n an d ritain , whe n y t h e a s cam e t o Thule
- a l l o f thes e countrie s wer e populated , som e o f the m
densely populated , o r d e r l y government s ha d bee n i n s t i t u t e d ,
w a r s ha d bee n wage d an d numerou s s t e p s take n alon g t h e
path o f civilization . o w infinitel y lon g mus t be , indeed ,
t h e perio d o f tim e elapse d befor e t h e momen t a t whic h the y
become know n t o u s
ere w e hav e reache d t h e ultimat e l i m i t s o f ou r
knowledge abou t time t h e p a s t lyin g beyon d t h i s i s a s
unknown t o u s an d a s obscur e a s t h e future . u t a s soo n
a s t h e huma n min d acquire s t h e leisur e an d capabilit y 20
t o indulg e i n reflection s an d discove r t h e b a r r i e r s i n i t s
way, i t s foremos t concer n become s ho w t o surmoun t them .
b e a s t encounterin g o b s t a c l e s t r i e s t o evad e them , ma n t o
surmount them . Th e ver y a t t e m p t s r e f e r r e d to , howeve r
unsuccessful, furnis h clea r proo f o f t h i s an d the y ma y a l l
be valuabl e a t l e a s t insofa r a s the y provid e a y a r d s t i c k o f
t h e excellenc e an d s u p e r i o r i t y o f ou r specie s ove r b e a s t s - a
feature whic h appear s a s e a r l y a s t h e nation s themselves .
The momen t w e discove r t h e l i m i t s o f ou r knowledge , w e
6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

ponder withou t paus e ove r t h e mean s o f expandin g it w e


seek wit h equa l eagernes s t o loo k bac k int o t h e p a s t an d t o
look ahea d int o th e future . oet s an d prophet s appea r wh o
r a r e l y solv e th e problem s pu t befor e them , ye t easil y gai n
credence, sinc e eac h ma y hav e h i s wa y o f knowin g - a t l e a s t
a s muc h a s anybod y else . nl y a f t e r a lon g tim e an d whe n
man reache s a hig h leve l o f culture , doe s h e begi n t o
suspect an d - muc h l a t e r s t i l l - t o realiz e t h a t poetr y an d
prophecy a r e o f ver y l i t t l e w o r t h i n t h e s e r e s p e c t s an d
finally look s aroun d fo r o t h e r mean s whic h w e hav e no w
learned t o choos e wit h cautiousnes s an d circumspection . o w
we conside r f i r s t o f a l l whethe r suc h mean s a r e r e l i a b l e an d
do no t lea d u s a s t r a y again . o w w e n o longe r requir e t h a t
they lea d u s a l l t h e wa y t o t h e ultimat e goal , whic h w e
realize i s impossibl e t o a t t a i n w e a r e s a t i s f i e d i f onl y
they pu t u s o n t h e r i g h t track , whic h w e the n t r y t o follo w
a s fa r a s possible . Suc h mean s o f findin g som e t r a c k s
through t h e dar k nigh t o f ntiquit y a c t u a l l y e x i s t . Th e
observation o f atur e herself , o f t h e s t r a t a o f t h e soil , o f
t h e i n t e r i o r o f mountain s - ma y furnis h a g r e a t dea l o f
information abou t th e upheaval s t o whic h ou r e a r t h h a s bee n
subjected b y ature . Th e religion , manners , customs , an d
civil i n s t i t u t i o n s o f differen t people s i n t h e e a r l i e s t perio d
in whic h the y a r e know n t o us , ma y giv e u s man y a clu e t o
t h e i r 21 relationshi p an d extraction . Th e conditio n i n
which the y mak e t h e i r f i r s t appearanc e ca n a l w a y s lea d u s
t o som e conclusion s abou t t h e i r previou s condition , o r abou t
t h e manne r i n whic h the y a r r i v e d a t t h e i r presen t one . u t
no o t h e r mean s o f knowledg e abou t t h e e x t r a c t i o n an d
relationship o f nation s i n t h e d i s t a n t p a s t wher e h i s t o r y
forsakes u s i s a s importan t a s lang age ithi n on e
generation a peopl e ma y chang e i t s religion , customs ,
conventions, l a w s an d i n s t i t u t i o n s , ma y r i s e t o civilizatio n o r
drop bac k int o primitivenes s an d ignorance bu t throughou t
t h e s e vicissitude s languag e endure s continuously , i f no t
I TR D TI

exactly t h e same , s t i l l quit e recognizable , throug h severa l


millennia even . Th e Gree k nation , fo r example , h a s suffere d
the fat e o f a l l thes e upheavals , bu t w e ca n s t i l l t e l l t h e
tongue o f ome r i n t h e Gree k peasant' s speech . I n fact ,
language h a s change d eve n l e s s i n som e o t h e r countries ,
circunstances havin g bee n mor e favorabl e th e ra b s t i l l
u n d e r s t a n d s wha t wa s w r i t t e n i n rabi c man y centurie s
before Mohammed , t h e Icelande r s t i l l r e a d s wha t r e rode
w r o t e an d Ejvind Skaldespille r sang. t t e r dispersio n o r
destruction o f t h e peopl e i s require d fo r a languag e t o b e
wiped ou t completely eve n t h e mos t violen t oppressio n an d
t h e s t r o n g e s t blendin g wit h foreigner s brin g abou t a chang e
of languag e onl y a f t e r severa l centuries , an d eve n s o t h e
s h i f t mos t ofte n i s j u s t int o anothe r r e l a t e d dialec t whic h
i s simple r an d mor e mixe d i n i t s grammatica l system . Thu s
Gaulish wa s s t i l l spoke n i n ranc e i n th e 6 t h centur y .D. ,
however h a r d t h e Roman s t r i e d t o exterminat e it t o t h i s
very da y ymri c i s spoke n i n ales an d nglo-Saxo n i s
s t i l l c l e a r l y recognize d i n moder n English .
22 I n determinin g t h e e x t r a c t i o n an d e a r l i e s t habitatio n o f
peoples, t h e origi n o f t h e i r language s h a s , i n fact , lon g bee n
considered o f g r e a t importance , an d a l l civilize d nation s
which conside r i t o f i n t e r e s t t o kno w themselve s an d t h e i r
own e a r l i e s t h i s t o r y , includin g ou r own , affor d example s o f
a t t e m p t s , o r a t l e a s t surmises , i n t h i s m a t t e r . u t thi s
subject h a s s o fa r h a r d l y bee n deeme d w o r t h y o f a t t e n t i o n
in an y o t h e r countr y t o t h e exten t o f contemplatin g a
complete scientifi c investigatio n o f t h e origi n o f t h e ancien t
language o f th e natio n wit h a l l t h a t t h i s involves . or ,
probably, doe s an y o t h e r Europea n natio n s h a r e t h e
distinction wit h t h e Danis h o f havin g i t s ancien t languag e
with suc h ric h an d excellen t l i t e r a t u r e preserve d an d livin g
t o t h i s ver y da y withi n i t s ow n t e r r i t o r y . ncien t Greek ,
atin, an d nglo-Saxo n disappeare d foreve r man y centurie s
ago a l r e a d y , an d n o o t h e r Europea n peopl e b o a s t s an y
8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

significant ancien t literature , valuabl ei n regar d t o bot h


content an d presentation . o r t h i s reaso n i t behoove s u s
least o f a l l t o ignor e ou r ancien t language an d fo r th e
s a m e r e a s o n w e , l e a s t o f a l l , nee d r e s o r t t o f a b r i c a t i o n a n d
romantic reverie . onfinin g ourselve s t o th e searc h fo r
sheer truth ,w e ma y safel y leav e i t t o other s elts ,
asques, Jews , Indians , etc. ) t o argu e abou t whos e languag e
w a s spoke n i n aradise ou r ol d nationa l language , th e
language no w calle d Icelandic , stand s t o los e nothin g i n
worth no r fo r it s explanatio n b y stayin g ou to f th e
abylonian confusion . esides , suc h argumen t woul d hav e
been q u i t e i m p r o p e r i n a s c i e n t i f i c i n v e s t i g a t i o n - whic h w a s
e x a c t l y w h a t w a s c a l l e d f o r b y t h e o al anis o iet o
ien es and etters whe n i t propose d t h e topi c whic h occa -
sioned t h e presen t t r e a t i s e . I t r e a d s a s follow s
2 Investigatin g wit h historica l criticis m an d
illustrating wit h appropriat e examples , fro m
which sourc e t h e ol d Scandinavia n languag e ma y
most safel y b e derived statin g th e characte r
of t h e l a n g u a g e a n d i t s r e l a t i o n s f r o m a n c i e n t
times an d throughou t t h e Middl e ge s bot h t o
the ordi c an d t o t h e Germani c dialects an d
a s c e r t a i n i n g t h e e x a c t p r i n c i p l e s upo n w h i c h a l l
derivation an d compariso ni n thes e idiom s
should b e based .
n undertakin g o f ver y extensiv e scop e an d considerabl e
difficulty, a s i t e x t e n d s no t onl y int o t h e mos t d i s t a n t
heathen p a s t o f Scandinavia , bu t eve n beyon d t h a t t o t h e
f i r s t sourc e o f t h e natio n an d t h e language . Th e greates t
scholars o f languag e have ,i n fact , bee ni n tota l
disagreement o n t h i s m a t t e r . n e derive s t h e l d orse , o r
Icelandic, languag e fro m ebrew , anothe r fro m eltic ,a
t h i r d fro m appish , an d a f o u r t h consider s i t a kin d o f
corrupt lattdeutsch, etc. u t s o f a r nobod y h a s s u g g e s t e d
and prove d a n origi n thereo f whic h h a s ha d an y s u b s t a n t i a l
I TR D TI

measure o f reasonableness , o r h a s me t wit h an y p a r t i c u l a r


approval fro m discriminatin g an d unprejudice d reviewers . I n
an undertakin g a s precariou s a s t h i s on e beg s forgiveness ,
therefore, i f t h e ver y f a r t h e s t goal , t h e ver y f i r s t poin t
from whic h i t sprang , migh t no t b e reached . I t wa s
considered mor e urgen t t o tak e a few , bu t certai n s t e p s i n
those dar k a r e a s reservin g a continuatio n unti l a l a t e r tim e
and upo n f u r t h e r s t u d y , o r els e leavin g i t t o o t h e r s t o
continue alon g t h e pat h t h u s safel y cleared) , tha n t o desir e
t o kno w i t a l l a t once , t h u s runnin g t h e ris k o f goin g
a s t r a y , o r a t l e a s t expoundin g a n hypothesi s unprove d an d
perhaps unprovabl e o n accoun t o f t h e remotenes s o f t h e
source - whic h i n n o wa y woul d confor m t o t h e intentio n o f
t h e Roya l Society , expresse d s o c l e a r l y i n i t s wordin g o f
the problem . enien t judgemen t i s a l s o hope d fo r i n t h e
event t h a t a n occasiona l e r r o r 2 wa s committe d i n som e
detail whil e searchin g fo r thes e fain t t r a c k s an d advancin g
along t h e s e untrodde n p a t h s o n whic h eve n t h e g r e a t e s t
s c h o l a r s hav e l o s t t h e i r wa y - i f t h e whol e i s otherwis e
found t o b e c o r r e c t an d wel l founded . Th e a u t h o r d a r e s t o
seek comfor t an d tak e prid e onl y i n on e thin g h i s ow n
conviction o f havin g honestl y an d withou t prejudic e searche d
for t h e t r u t h an d spare d n o pain s t o fin d i t out .
In investigation s o f t h i s s o r t i t appear s mos t practica l
t o begi n b y layin g dow n t h e principle s on e consider s i t mos t
proper t o follow . ccordingly , I s h a l l a t t e m p t f i r s t o f a l l
t o giv e a surve y o f t h e nature , divisions , an d principa l r u l e s
of etymology nex t briefl y describ e t h e subjec t proper , i.e .
t h e Icelandi c language , an d t h e c l a s s o f language s t o whic h
i t belongs an d finall y investigat e i t s origin . u ta sn o
r u l e s ca n actuall y t e l l u s ho w t o discover , w e canno t ver y
well expec t t o b e abl e t o fin d t h e sourc e o f ou r ancien t
language b y a b s t r a c t reasoning . Th e r u l e s ca n t e l l u s onl y
what propertie s a languag e mus t hav e i n o r d e r t o b e
considered t h e sourc e o f another , o r w h a t p r o p e r t i e s w o r d s
10 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

must hav e i n orde r fo r the m rightl y t o b e hel d t o b e


related. I n othe r words , th e rule s ma y serv e a s a
touchstone bu t i n orde r t o fin d tha t whic h w e ar e seekin g
here, hardl y an y othe r rationa l wa y exist s tha n a
comparison involvin g al l surroundin g languages . Tha t
chapter thu s fall s int o a numbe r o f smalle r sections ,
according t o th e language s whic h ma y b e considered , th e
measure o f attentio n devote d t o eac h dependin g o n it s
relative importanc e an d relatednes s t o Icelandic . Thi s
appears t o b e a t onc e th e mos t convenien t wa y o f surveyin g
the relation s o f tha t languag e t o eac h o f th e relate d
languages, an d als o th e safes t mean s o f findin g one' s wa y t o
its tru e source , whic h the n require s th e mos t detaile d
treatment an d finall y conclude s th e exposition .
irst hapte r

n Etymolog y i n Genera l

Etymology i s a branc h o f knowledg e whic h t h e Greek s


and Roman s di d no t r e a l l y s t u d y , an d whic h h a s bee n ope n
t o a l l kind s o f preposterou s opinion s an d ridiculou s fads .
These a r e probabl y t h e r e a s o n s wh y s o man y s t u d e n t s o f
language, especiall y i n recen t times , hav e hel d i t i n
contempt. Erroneou s notion s hav e bee n entertaine d abou t t h e
n a t u r e , purpos e an d usefulnes s o f t h i s s t u d y , wording s hav e
been vagu e an d le d t o misunderstanding , an d ver y fe w hav e
so f a r attempte d t o r a i s e etymolog y t o t h e s t a t u s o f a n
autonomous branc h o f s c h o l a r s h i p , i n spit e o f t h e fac t t h a t
i t h a s bee n c a r r i e d o n fo r man y centuries fo r eve n t h e
Greeks an d Roman s etymologize d i n t h i s sense , j u s t a s a l l
and ever y fiel d o f scienc e h a s bee n practice d i n a smal l wa y
and i n singl e case s lon g befor e i t h a s bee n systematized .
ossibly t h e b e s t t h a t h a s bee n w r i t t e n abou t t h i s m a t t e r i n
recent time s i s t h e a r t i c l e o n t ologie in t h e renc h
n lo die t odi e ra aire et itt rat re which
d e a l s r a t h e r thoroughl y wit h 1 ) t h e source s fo r findin g t h e
origin o f w o r d s , 2 ) t h e principle s fo r evaluatin g w h a t i s
found, an d ) t h e usefulnes s o f etymology . I t show s t h e
relevance o f etymolog y t o philosoph y an d o t h e r mor e exac t
fields o f learning , an d finall y t o mytholog y an d h i s t o r y
but l i t t l e o r nothin g i s sai d abou t i t s mos t immediat e an d
r e a l purpos e an d valu e fo r a thoroug h s t u d y o f language .
The sam e i s t r u e o f o od n er' s e iis aa rog
onstens ir elige tte in t h e T r a n s a c t i o n s o f t h e Societ y
of Science s an d e t t e r s , vol . 6 . Ther e i s , however , another ,
excellent pape r i n Danish , i n a prospectu s b y r o f e s s o r Dr .
12 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

egen known fo r h i s extensiv e knowledg e o f language s


a s wel l a s h i s penetratin g i n s i g h t s i n mathematics i t wa s
published wit h th e t i t l e idrag til de et ologis e
Unders gelsers eorie i n Viborg in 180 . o i
etens's er die r nds t e nd den t en der t ologie
in t h e Schweriner I n t e l l i g e n z b l a t t for 1 6 9 h a s no t bee n
available t o me . Som e observation s r e l a t i n g t o t h i s m a t t e r
a r e a l s o foun d i n t h e introductio n t o a ter's German
dictionary. Th e g r e a t man y l e t t e r change s l i s t e d b y re
t o w a r d s t h e en d o f t h e prefac e i n h i s lossari io
got i an d eve n mor e s o t h e ra tat s de er tatione
literar b y ossi s a t t h e beginnin g o f h i s t ologi on
ling latin a r e s o completel y inadequat e an d unscientifi c
t h a t the y canno t b e considere d a t a l l , excep t a s unsorte d
raw materials .
The fac t t h a t t h e Greek s an d Roman s di d no t s t u d y i t ,
cannot r i g h t f u l l y b e blame d o n etymolog y itself . T h i s wa s
not becaus e o f an y contemp t fo r i t o n t h e i r p a r t , bu t
because the y ha d a s ye t n o notio n abou t i t , n o predecessor s
t o suppl y enoug h d a t a fo r the m t o wor k o n an d classify ,
none o f t h e indispensabl e a i d s o f whic h w e no w hav e s o
many. ctually , a thoroug h s t u d y o f etymolog y require s
considerable insigh t int o a l l p a r t s an d c o r n e r s o f t h e
language i n question , a s wel l a s a n extensiv e f a m i l i a r i t y
with t h e language s r e l a t e d t o i t . I n som e instances ,
information mus t b e gleane d fro m t h e ol d mothe r languag e o r
a n c e s t r a l language . owever , t h e a n c e s t r a l language s o f
Greece an d I t a l y wer e ver y l i t t l e know n t o t h e ncients ,
because n o s u b s t a n t i a l w r i t t e n remain s o f the m wer e 2
e x t a n t . I n t h i s , w e a r e i n a muc h mor e f o r t u n a t e positio n
for t h e derivatio n o f t h e moder n languages , becaus e w e hav e
s u b s t a n t i a l monument s o f t h e ol d a n c e s t r a l language s fro m
which the y hav e sprung . y f a r t h e mos t f o r t u n a t e o f a l l
in t h i s respec t a r e t h e Scandinavians , becaus e t h e i r ol d
language, i n additio n t o bein g know n fro m a b r i l l i a n t
ET M G I GE ER 1

l i t e r a t u r e , i s s t i l l aliv e o n t h e islan d o f Iceland . I n o t h e r


cases, t h e speec h o f t h e commo n ma n mus t b e studie d i n t h e
l i t t l e - k n o w n idiom s foun d i n differen t regions . owever , t h e
ncients encountere d t h e prejudic e t h a t onl y t h e languag e o f
t h e it y wa s goo d atin , j u s t a s onl y t h a t o f then s wa s
good Greek . I n addition , the y lacke d t h e collection s o f
provincialisms, regiona l dictionaries , an d account s o f t h e
s t a t e o f t h e languag e i n variou s a r e a s o f whic h w e no w hav e
such a wealth . I n s t i l l o t h e r case s recours e mus t b e ha d t o
r e l a t e d languages . Sinc e the y a r e numerous , t h i s i s on e o f
t h e requirement s mos t difficul t fo r t h e etymologis t t o
s a t i s f y , especiall y i f t h e language s a r e unknown , unstudie d
and inaccessible , whic h wa s b y an d l a r g e t h e cas e i n
ntiquity. I n ou r da y w e hav e w r i t i n g s i n mos t Europea n
languages fro m appis h t o Turkis h a s wel l a s g r a m m a r s an d
dictionaries throug h whic h i t i s possibl e t o acquir e a genera l
idea o f t h e s t r u c t u r e o f t h e s e language s an d t h e i r mutua l
r e l a t i o n s b y a certai n amoun t o f p r i v a t e s t u d y . y al l
these mean s w e can , t o a considerabl e extent , mak e u p fo r
t h e n a r r o w limitation s o f ou r memor y an d tim e s o a s t o
encompass th e numerou s language s belongin g t o a c l a s s ,
whereas t h e ncients , i n t h e i r scientifi c undertakings , ha d
few o r n o w r i t i n g s i n o t h e r r e l a t e d languages , n o a i d s t o
learn them , why , no t eve n dictionarie s i n t h e i r ow n language s
until l a t e . ha t i s s u r p r i s i n g , therefore , i s no t t h a t t e
were s o backwar d i n actua l knowledg e o f languag e an d
etymology, bu t r a t h e r t h a t e s t i l l hav e mad e s o l i t t l e
progress.
28 s fo r t h e secon d objection , viz . t h a t etymolog y h a s
been a fiel d ope n t o a l l kind s o f peculia r fads , o r i n o t h e r
w o r d s , t h a t i t h a s bee n misuse d o r mistake n - t h i s , again ,
cannot r i g h t f u l l y b e blame d o n etymolog y itself . fte r a l l ,
t h e sam e thin g use d t o b e t r u e , onl y t o a muc h highe r
degree, i n philosophy , astronomy , medicine , etc. , bu t wh o
would fo r t h a t reaso n rejec t t h e s e science s toda y l l
1 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

human knowledg e is , especiall y i n it s beginnings , a medle y o f


truth an d error i t i s fo r th e scientis t t o separat e th e
two, discar d th e latter , purify , extract , prov e an d orde r th e
former, an d finall y t o us e it . o r ca n anybod y den y th e
fact that , beside s al l thos e awkwar d conjecture s an d
ridiculous idea s referre d to , ther e are , i n fact , a hos t o f
actually correc t etymologies , eithe r quit e obviou s i n
themselves o r alread y discovere d an d proved e.g. , g te
from agt or and from Germa n r ann and thi s fro m
a ren i.e. 'drive' gel from l e witness tha t i n
Swedish i t i s n el formerl y l el i n Icel . l ill fro m
li a whic h i s a usua l an d regula r derivation , correspondin g
to Germ . l ssel from s lies en urthermor ei ti s
certain tha t al l thos e word s whic h ar e no t roo t o r ste m
words mus t hav e som e origin , an d tha t i t mus t b e possible ,
if no t always , a t leas t i n th e cas e o f man y word s no t to o
far remove d fro m th e sourc e an d wher e th e intermediat e
links ar e no t missing , t o discove r thi s origi n i f onl y th e
problem i s approache d i n th e righ t fashion . I t i s trul y
strange t o se e ho w som e men , wh o ar e otherwis e possesse d
of grea t eruditio n an d eve n exquisit e taste , expres s
themselves i n a wa y no t a t al l worth y o f the m abou t thi s
matter - as , fo r example , whe n eder Syv , the grea t schola r
of language , explain s ndag from '' o ntag a t mand d a
skal forson e sine synder , instead o f fro m Icel . s nn dagr
Germ. onntag from th e ol d wor d 29 1 fo r th e su n s nna
G e r m . d i e onne e t us , however , bea r i n min d ho w ver y
easily, amon g th e innumerabl e word s o f on e language , no t t o
speak o f thos e o f severa l relate d languages , tw o word s ma y
happen t o b e foun d whic h loo k a lo t alik e withou t bein g i n
the ver y leas t related . Thu s e.g . lede 'to search ' an d lede
'to lead ' th e forme r i s i n Germ. s en i n Icel. leita fro m
leit i.e . ' s e a r c h i n g ' . e latte r i n G e r m . le iten Icel . leida
from leid 'way, direction') . Similarl y re and ere or
still mor e deceivingl y i n Swedish , wher e bot h ar e gre one
ET M G I GE ER 15

from t h e adjectiv e g i.e. 'high ' Icel . h r , compar . rri


t h e o t h e r withou t an y positiv e fro m Icel . gri whic h i s t h e
compar. o f gr i.e. de ter 'adroit , comfortable , conve -
venient'. e t us , secondly , conside r ho w easil y suc h case s
may lea d eve n th e experience d ma n a s t r a y wh o h a s t o fin d
h i s wa y amon g t h i s multitud e o f item s withou t predecessor s
or r u l e s t o guid e h i s s t e p s , basin g himsel f solel y o n h i s
own vagu e intuition . onsiderin g a l l t h i s , an y reasonabl e
observer wil l hav e t o agre e t h a t mistake s wer e boun d t o b e
made b y t h e f i r s t peopl e wh o studie d etymology . I ti s
a l w a y s easie r fo r thos e wh o follo w a f t e r t o evaluate ,
c o r r e c t an d improve , tha n themselve s t o lea d t h e way .
Taking advantag e o f ou r predecessor s i n t h i s way , buildin g
on whateve r the y hav e foun d ou t c o r r e c t l y an d learnin g fro m
t h e i r mistakes , w e s h a l l undoubtedl y pu t the m t o a w o r t h i e r
and b e t t e r us e tha n b y r a s h l y showerin g the m wit h ou r
contempt an d scorn . oweve r on e ma y prefe r t o t r e a t the m
- fro m t h e fac t t h a t the y hav e ofte n faile d t o achiev e t h e i r
goal nothin g ca n b e conclude d a g a i n s t t h e cas e itself .
hat, then , i s t h e essenc e o f etymolog y Th e wor d
i s use d i n severa l meanings . I n g r a m m a r s i t usuall y denote s
the f i r s t p a r t i n whic h th e individua l wor d c l a s s e s p a r t s o f
speech) an d t h e i r changin g form s a r e t r e a t e d - o t h e r w i s e
called ' orml re' in Danis h a s oppose d t o S y n t a x i s o r
' rdf jningsl ren'. Sometimes i t r e f e r s t o t h e ver y origi n
o r provenienc e o f a word , a s whe n w e as k wha t 0 i s t h e
etymology o f t h i s o r t h a t word . Sometime s i t mean s
deriving a wor d fro m i t s ste m wor d o r determinin g i t s
origin, a s whe n w e tal k abou t t h i s o r t h a t etymolog y bein g
s t r a i n e d o r false . Sometimes , finally , i t r e f e r s t o t h e
e n t i r e fiel d devote d t o investigatin g t h e origi n o f w o r d s , an d
t h i s i s t h e mos t usua l meaning , whe n w e tal k abou t
etymology i n general . u t t h i s concep t i s s t i l l r a t h e r
n a r r o w i t i s no t j u s t t h e origin o f w o r d s t h a t w e shoul d
s t u d y , bu t whateve r ma y serv e t o t h r o w l i g h t o n the m an d
16 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

explain ho w an d whenc e the y hav e acquire d th e shap e an d


meaning the y hav e now . owever , thi s call s fo r muc h mor e
than suc h plai n etymologizin g a s jus t allude d t o
information abou t a wor d i s gleane d no t onl y fro m i t s ste m
word, bu t als o fro m relate d collatera l word s o r eve n fro m
derivatives o f words e.g. , th e fac t tha t th e mai n concep t
of en s i s beaut y an d no t lov e ca n b e concluded , amon g
other things , fro m en s t s en stas on en sto etc . I
would suggest , therefore , rathe r t o cal l thi s stud y wor d
analysis, whic h seem s muc h bette r t o expres s th e concep t
involved. owever , i t i s no t jus t word s tha t shoul d b e
studied either fo r althoug h languag e consist s entirel y o f
words, separat e word s d o no t ye t constitut e language , unles s
they ar e connecte d t o eac h othe r i n som e way . I n mos t
languages suc h connectio n i s establishe d throug h certai n
changes i n th e words , or , a s the y ar e called , inflections .
Such for m change s an d mor e generall y th e entir e structur e
and syste m o f a languag e provid e a ne w objec t o f etymolog y
or, a s w e migh t perhap s cal l i t i n thi s case , lang age
anal sis whic h ma y als o b e use d a s a genera l term . b -
viously, then , languag e analysi s shoul d no t b e conceive d o f
as a scienc e prescribin g 1 rule s whic h w e ca n us e
mechanically t o find , unerringly , th e origi n o f word s withou t
any furthe r ado , jus t a s w e ca n fin d th e differenc e betwee n
two number s b y subtractin g th e smalle r fro m th e larger .
Rather, i t point s ou t fro m wha t source s w e ca n dra w th e
information abou t word s w e seek i t tell s u s ho w t o
evaluate explanation s alread y foun d an d proposed , an d ho w t o
determine whic h on e o f severa l idea s an d opinion s i s mor e
correct an d whic h ha s les s plausibilit y o r i s completel y
unfounded. I n genera l nothin g ca n eve r tel l u s ho w t o
make discoveries bu t somethin g ma y pu t u s o n th e righ t
track an d als o tel l u s ho w t o evaluate , develop , apply , o r
reject whateve r wa s found . Th e forme r i s du e t o goo d
fortune, natura l talen t o r extensiv e insights th e latte r i s
ET M G I GE ER 1

t h e purpos e an d usefulnes s o f a l l science .


The concep t o f a scienc e includes , t o som e extent , i t s
subdivision. I woul d lik e t o s u g g e s t dividin g languag e
a n a l y s i s int o a lied an d t eoreti al Th e applie d variety ,
a s a l w a y s , i s t h e olde r o f t h e two . o theor y eve r appear s
in an y scienc e unti l i t h a s lon g bee n practice d b y ma n - a l l
t h e tim e a l t e r n a t e l y experimenting , failing , bu t a l s o findin g
some r i g h t a n s w e r s , t h u s producin g a wealt h o f m a t e r i a l
which som e gifte d sou l ma y g a t h e r up , s o r t ou t an d a r r a n g e
into a hol e o n whic h p o s t e r i t y ca n buil d i n t u r n . y
a lied languag e a n a l y s i s I understan d 1 ) t h e branc h
dealing wit h derivin g an d explainin g t h e individua l w o r d s o f
a language . Th e onl y c o r r e c t wa y t o t r e a t o f t h i s i s i n t h e
form o f a dictionary , t h i s bein g t h e onl y plac e wher e a l l t h e
w o r d s o r a l l t h e individua l p a r t s an d member s o f a languag e
have bee n collected . u t2 ) a s i t 2 i s no t j u s t t h e
w o r d s , bu t a l s o t h e i r inflection s an d t h e e n t i r e s y s t e m o f a
language whos e origi n an d n a t u r e shoul d b e investigate d an d
explained, anothe r kin d o f applie d languag e a n a l y s i s ensue s
which t o m y knowledg e h a s s o f a r bee n completel y ignore d
and neglected . Th e onl y r e a l wa y t o c a r r y i t ou t i s i n t h e
form o f a grammar , t h i s bein g t h e onl y plac e i n whic h t h e
e n t i r e s t r u c t u r e o f a languag e i s s e p a r a t e l y a r r a n g e d .
learly, t h e r e ca n b e a s man y varietie s o f a l l o f t h i s
applied languag e a n a l y s i s , bot h lexica l an d grammatical , a s
t h e numbe r o f s e p a r a t e language s o r a t l e a s t languag e
c l a s s e s found . y t eoreti al languag e derivation , whic h
might perhap s a l s o b e calle d etymologics , I understan d t h a t
o t h e r branc h which , o n t h e b a s i s o f well-know n an d
indisputable instances , find s ou t an d s e t s f o r t h t h e
propositions an d r u l e s o n whic h i t s applie d counterpar t b a s e s
itself. s a l r e a d y mentioned , t h i s disciplin e h a s develope d
l a t e r , bu t nevertheles s i t seem s mos t practica l t o l e t i t
occupy t h e f i r s t position , wheneve r bot h a r e t o b e d e a l t
with. lthoug h i t migh t appea r t o b e t h e sam e fo r a l l
18 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

human tongue s - whic h i t probabl y i s i n man y respect s -


the particula r language s fro m whic h i t i s deduce d o r t o
which i t refer s mos t closely , nevertheles s necessitat e a
number o f specia l considerations , becaus e th e shift s o f
sounds ar e s o dissimila r i n differen t languages .
ow, i f on e s t a r t s fro m thi s notio n o f languag e ana -
lysis, an d als o ha s th e righ t notio n o f ort ogra i ti s
easily see n tha t thi s i s definitel y n o are a i n whic h languag e
analysis i s a t al l relevan t an d useful . resumabl y th e onl y
and highes t goa l fo r a n orthograph y i s th e abilit y t o
represent, a s perfectl y a s possible , al l th e component s o f a
word i n thei r prope r interrelation , an d furthermor e t o d o i t
the wa y th e wor d w e wan t t o writ e i s no w an d sound s a t
present i n th e languag e t o whic h i t belong s - no t th e wa y i t
was i n th e ol d day s o r i s i n som e othe r languages .
ow thi s highes t goa l i s bes t achieved , doe s no t belon g
here ou r onl y concer n her e i s tha t i t i s no t accomplishe d
by representin g th e origi n o f eac h word , a s i s easil y
realized. Th e writin g o f s o man y letter s becaus e the y ar e
found i n th e ste m word , althoug h no t i n th e wor d o r
language concerne d e.g . sal e instea d o f al e from
, t ds instea d o f t s from de ts and thi s fro m
e t - or , conversely , th e omissio n o f s o man y letter s
because the y ar e no t foun d i n th e ste m word , althoug h the y
are actuall y hear d i n th e wor d i n questio n an d require d
according t o th e natur e o f th e languag e suc h a s r instead
of r from ar s e instead o f e from a
perforce render s readin g ver y difficult , indeed , i f carrie d
far, almos t impossibl e fo r someon e wh o ha s n o etymologica l
understanding o f th e language i.e. , fo r al l unlettere d peopl e
who hav e n o wa y o f knowin g wha t al l th e redundancie s mea n
and ho w muc h o f eac h wor d the y ma y discard , no r ho w muc h
and wher e the y hav e t o add , i n orde r t o ge t th e correc t
sound an d thu s th e ide a o f th e word . Th e onl y cas e i n
which th e derivatio n o f a wor d ma y b e considere d i n
ET M G I GE ER 19

determining ho w t o w r i t e it , i s whe n exactl y t h e sam e soun d


h a s tw o differen t r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s i n t h a t cas e i t i s mor e
n a t u r a l t o choos e whicheve r spellin g agree s mor e wit h o t h e r
forms o f t h e wor d o r wit h i t s origin e.g . s tte rather
than set te o n account o f satte lge on accoun t o f algde
o r fro m alg I t i s obviou s t h a t a l l o t h e r reason s whic h
have bee n adduce d t o enhanc e th e us e o f etymolog y i n
o r t h o g r a p h y a r e nothin g bu t idl e quibbles , a s whe n i t i s
claimed t h a t t h i s mor e accurat e w r i t i n g , a s the y cal l it , i s
necessary i n o r d e r t o compensat e t h e movement s o f t h e
speaker's bod y an d t h e innumerabl e inflection s o f i s voic e
which canno t b e represente d i n w r i t i n g . u t ho w ca n w e
call i t accurac y no w t o i n s e r t extraneou s element s int o
words, no w t o omi t som e o f t h e i r essentia l p a r t s
nd ho w ca n t h e imperfection s o f o r t h o g r a p h y b e
compensated fo r b y f e a t u r e s servin g onl y t o confus e an d
complicate i t I t appear s j u s t a s preposterou s t o t r y t o
indicate t h e derivatio n o f a l l w o r d s b y t h e i r spelling , a s i f
an a u t h o r appende d a grammatica l a n a l y s i s t o h i s wor k
which t h e ignoran t coul d no t understan d o r us e an d t h e
e x p e r t s woul d no t need . E.g. , doe s a peasant , whe n readin g
w o r d s lik e sal e t ds thin k o f , e t Doe s t h i s
o r d giv e hi m t h e s l i g h t e s t hin t o r hel p t o kno w t h e c o r -
r e c t an d precis e impor t o f t h o s e w o r d s n th e o t h e r
hand, h e wh o h a s s c h o l a r l y knowledg e abou t h i s ow n l a n -
guage an d know s th e e x t r a c t i o n o f i t s w o r d s - i s h e liabl e
t o forge t a l l t h a t , j u s t becaus e som e i r r e l e v a n t mark s
thereof a r e no t inserte d Soun d an d contex t suffic e t o
s u g g e s t t h e correc t notio n t o anyon e familia r wit h t h e
language i f not , ever y occurrenc e o f suc h a wor d i n speec h
would requir e t h e addition , o r a l l y , o f i t s etymologica l
explanation. u t no t onl y i s t h i s no t necessary i t i s no t
even defensible . o r i f t h e rul e i s t h a t w e shoul d represen t
each e n t i r e wor d wit h a l l i t s component s j u s t a s i t sound s
in th e languag e now , i t follow s d i r e c t l y t h a t nothin g ma y b e
20 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

omitted no r anythin g inserted , whethe r i t i s actuall y foun d


in th e roo t wor d o r i n anothe r language , o r indee d fo r an y
reason whatsoever . urthermore , a s lon g a s th e derivatio n
is itsel f disputed , an d n o agreemen t see n concernin g th e
origin o f al l words , ho w ca n w e us e i t a s a guidelin e i n
another disciplin e Suc h misus e ha s i n fac t ofte n le d t o
quite arbitrar y an d incorrec t distortion s o f word s t o accor d
with persona l fad s o f etymology . llo w m e t o cit e som e
interesting example s o f thi s fro m ou r mothe r tongue .
5 Th e wor d rste is writte n wit h a n by som e r
ste because the y deriv e i t fro m th e numera l rst ow,
it i s a historica l fac t tha t thi s wor d ha s com e fro m Germa n
to replac e th e ol d ordi c ding Icel. d ngi In actua l
fact, however , th e wor d i s rst i n German besides , i t
cannot ver y wel l com e fro m th e numeral , whic h i s erst i n
that language . o r di d i t ge t mixe d u p wit h th e numera l i n
other Scandinavia n language s int o whic h i t als o passe d i n
Icelandic i t i s writte n an d rea d rsti bu t th e numera l i s
rstr an d i n Swedis h rs te It i s tru e tha t i n Swedis h
we als o hav e th e for m rste but howeve r attractiv e thi s
may look , i t i s nothin g mor e tha n jus t a dialec t o f th e rea l
form rs te just a s Dan . r nd from Sw . r nn Sw . l s
from Dan . l s Icel. gg a Dan. gge d gg Dan . g
nna Germ . nnen and man y others . Thi s word , then , ha s
been distorte d t o accor d wit h a fals e derivation it s tru e
root seem s t o b e th e prepositio n r which i n th e ol d day s
had th e additiona l meanin g o f or jus t as th e l d Icel . r
In th e sam e wa y th e wor d orde oder has bee n d i s -
torted int o orde oder because som e peopl e though t i t
came fro m ord The followin g question s ca n immediatel y
be raise d i n objectio n t o thi s 1 ) i s th e us e o f a girdl e
sufficiently essentia l tha t thi s wor d woul d plausibl y b e
named fo r i t w e woul d rathe r expec t i t t o b e take n fro m
the treatmen t o f th e child ) 2 ) ha s an y othe r languag e i n
the worl d create d a wor d fo r midwif e fro m th e wor d fo r
ET M G I GE ER 21

girdle ) i s t h e objec t r e f e r r e d t o her e i n fac t calle d en


ord I hav e m y seriou s d o u b t s . n th e contrary , a
number o f locution s i n Icelandi c agre e wit h orde oder e.g.
' t h e r e i s a woma n i n confinement ' i s ar er ona g li
'she i s i n childbed ' i s n ligg r g li 'there i s a new -
born infant ' i s ar er arn grasi and t h e lik e - a l l o f
which undoubtedl y i s du e t o t h e ancien t 6 custo m i n
heathen time s o f de ositing t e ild on t e gro nd unti l i t s
f a t h e r ha d decide d whethe r i t shoul d b e permitte d t o live ,
a f t e r whic h i t wa s ta en an d give n a name . This , a t an y
r a t e , wa s s o essentia l t h a t t h e child' s lif e wa s a t stake
and t h i s ma y a l s o explai n t h e Swedis h ordeg a g a
i s a n ol d woman , t h e fem. of e s i m i l a r l y Germ .
e a e from e en 'take up' . at. s s i ere an d Gr .
seem t o sho w t h a t i n t h e o l d e s t time s t h i s wa s
an extremel y widesprea d custo m whic h ma y wel l hav e give n
r i s e t o t h e creatio n o f a wor d lik e t h i s wherea s absolutel y
no b a s i s i s foun d fo r orde oder nd i n fac t t h i s wor d
was a l w a y s unti l ver y recentl y spelle d wit h a , jus t a s i n
Swedish.
The wor d str h a s suffere d a s i m i l a r fate , som e
having s t a r t e d t o w r i t e i t stro Th e fac t t h a t t h e
probably incorrect ) derivatio n fro m s and tro h a s bee n
adopted b y t h e Danis h Dictionary , presumabl y followin g
eder Syv , whereas t h e c o r r e c t derivation , b y I h r e , from
sr is no t eve n mentione d b y it , i s a l l t h e mor e reaso n
for m e no t t o p a s s i t ove r i n t h i s place . gains t thi s
derivation fro m tro i t ma y b e observe d t h a t i n ou r ol d
language i t wa s no t customar y t o plac e a n adjectiv e a l l b y
itself a s a noun t h i s usag e h a s com e int o t h e languag e
l a t e r fro m German . owever , Germa n i n fac t doe s no t hav e
any suc h wor d fro m whic h str could hav e come . I n
accordance wit h th e n a t u r e o f ou r languag e suc h a n
e x t r a o r d i n a r y wor d a s stro i f w e mad e i t up , woul d hav e
t o mea n a fait h o r religio n t o b e use d i n t h e household , o n
22 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

the p a t t e r n o f sraad sd r and th e like . esides , tro


a s a n adjectiv e o f cours e i s commo n gender ho w shoul d
t h i s wor d mor e tha n a l l o t h e r s com e t o b e use d exclusivel y
about womankin d o r whe n w e tal k abou t en ga ild or
t h e like , w e usuall y hav e me n i n min d a s muc h a s women .
urthermore, i t i s quit e apparen t fro m t h e for m change s
of t h i s wor d t h a t i t wa s no t derive d fro m a n adjective , fo r
they neve r ad d t h e a r t i c l e a t t h e en d no r er i n t h e p l u r a l
i t i s impossibl e t o sa y a ilden a ilder d r gtigen
er antroen er and s o f o r t h , i n t h e sam e wa y i n whic h
people hav e a l w a y s sai d str en str er o r is ther e
probably an y languag e i n t h e worl d i n whic h a wor d fo r
' m i s t r e s s o f t h e house ' wa s forme d fro m ait l an y mor e
than on e fo r 'husband ' fro m n ait l s i s tru e als o o f
so man y o f th e Stoi c explanation s o f Gree k w o r d s , i t
appears t h a t t h i s derivatio n wa s manufacture d i n o r d e r t o
a s c r i b e a meanin g t o t h i s wor d whic h i t disavows , an d t h u s
t o b e entirel y false . owever , i n Germa n w e fin d a s ra
and i n Icelandi c t h e tw o w o r d s s re ia an d s r
which correspon d exactl y t o t h e Danis h word , an d whic h i n
Icelandic wer e s i m i l a r l y t w i s t e d int o s re ia an d str in
o r d e r t o avoi d t h e h a r d soun d o f s r althoug h t h e olde r
forms hav e no w onc e mor e gaine d t h e uppe r hand . I n t h i s
way a l s o Swedis h str i.e. 'wedde d wife' . re ia an d r
a r e ver y ol d ordi c honorifi c designation s o f t h e m i s t r e s s ,
as ndi of th e master s o i t wa s onl y n a t u r a l t o for m
s r fro m th e former , lik e s ndi fro m t h e l a t t e r .
These tw o w o r d s correspon d t o eac h o t h e r precisel y lik e
s ader t o s oder and had , i n fact , originall y j u s t t h i s
meaning. T h i s i s t h e explanatio n give n o f t h e w o r d s re ia
and r by Snorr e i n h i s ngl ngasaga, chapte r 1 . a t e r
both w o r d s wer e use d wit h referenc e t o marriag e i n
p a r t i c u l a r t h u s w e s t i l l hav e Engl . s and an d Sw . an d
Dan. str 'wife'. Eventually , s ndi wa s associate d wit h
the ide a o f a relatio n t o slave s o r s e r v a n t s whic h i t h a s
ET M G I GE ER 2

retained t o t h i s da y i n Danish . l l t h i s show s suc h precis e


agreement wit h th e r e l a t e d language s an d appear s s o n a t u r a l
and obviou s t h a t t h i s i s r i g h t l y assume d t o b e t h e t r u e
origin o f t h e word .
The wor d gs l h a s fare d n o b e t t e r . Som e 8
have wante d t o chang e t h i s int o i s l on th e Germa n
p a t t e r n l e s t i t shoul d appea r t o hav e anythin g t o d o wit h
g super b defens e fo r t h e forme r spellin g h a s a l r e a d y
been offere d b y rof. Dege n on p . 1 o f t h e above-mentione d
prospectus, t o whic h I mus t add , however , t h a t th e nou n
g does i n fac t hav e t h e ver y sam e origin . ro m thi s
r o o t com e man y w o r d s i n Icelandic , t h e mos t importan t o f
which I s h a l l cit e ei ia 'quicken , ignite ' ge i na
'come alive , catc h fir e ges t h e commo n peopl e egne
ei r ' a wick' i r 'alive , moving' i a 't o quiver , t o b e
excited' i indi 'an y livin g animal , c r e a t u r e , c a t t l e '
i 'cattle' i asil r 'quicksilver' , no t fro m t h e ver b
i a bu t mos t plausibl y fro m th e adjectiv e i r a s i n
ad i a sil r argentu m vivum) .
T h i s will , I hope , suffic e a s a warnin g agains t t h e
misuse o f wor d a n a l y s i s i n m a t t e r s o f o r t h o g r a p h y indeed ,
in t h e above-mentione d example s the y hav e attempte d t o
change no t j u s t t h e spellin g o f t h e s e w o r d s , bu t a l s o t h e i r
reading an d t h e i r e n t i r e for m an d t h u s don e violenc e t o t h e
language itself , whic h neve r ough t t o b e interfere d with .
e shoul d accep t i t s w o r d s whateve r the y happe n t o b e like .
s fo r t h e i r origin , t h e s c h o l a r shoul d kno w i t b y h e a r t bu t
not incorporat e i t int o t h e i r spelling , t o whic h i t i s
irrelevant.
y bein g t h u s almos t completel y exclude d fro m
o r t h o g r a p h y , languag e a n a l y s i s s t i l l doe s no t los e an y o f i t s
w o r t h . Th e grammaria n need s i t t o explai n t h e peculiaritie s
exhibited i n grammar t h e lexicographe r i n o r d e r t o decid e
which meanin g i s t h e o l d e s t an d mos t origina l i n eac h wor d
and ho w t h e o t h e r s hav e a r i s e n fro m i t - indeed , i n o r d e r
2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

t o kno w whe n h e shoul d assum e on e wor d wit h severa l


meanings an d when , severa l d i s t i n c t w o r d s o f identica l shape .
hoever want s t o determin e t h e differenc e betwee n w o r d s o f
similar meanin g mus t f i r s t 9 an d foremos t kno w t h e
origin o f eac h wor d an d whic h o f i t s meaning s i s t h e f i r s t
one. s fa r a s Danis h i s concerned , w e ofte n fin d t h a t t h e
only differenc e originall y consiste d i n on e wor d bein g
genuinely ordic , t h e o t h e r foreig n i n origin . a t e r o n t h e
ordic wor d h a s retaine d t h e simple , coarse , concret e
meaning, presumabl y becaus e i t s preservatio n i s du e t o t h e
common people , wherea s t h e foreig n wor d h a s acquire d onl y
t h e figurative , refined , a b s t r a c t meaning , becaus e i t h a s com e
into t h e languag e alon g wit h t h e cultur e t h r o u g h t h e highe r
c l a s s e s . Example s o f t h i s a r e t h e followin g sta e
ogsta ere Icel . sta a Germ , sta iren tigge etle
Icel. iggia 'receive' , Germ . etteln ar lot Icel . er
Germ. los s e te s rtse Icel. s ta Germ. s er
en lar ne riller Icel . glera g Germ. rillen and
many o t h e r s .
I n passing , I woul d lik e t o poin t ou t t h a t man y o f
these doublet s coul d becom e a n a s s e t o f Danis h t o whic h fe w
o t h e r language s hav e an y p a r a l l e l , i f t h e i r minut e difference s
were accuratel y develope d an d carefull y observe d b y ou r
authors. u t sometime s w e a r e no t wel l serve d b y the m
either, becaus e t h e foreig n w o r d s begi n t o encroac h upo n
good ol d ordi c w o r d s , nex t s e t t l e dow n besid e them , an d
finally expe l them , althoug h the y a r e r e a l l y f a r inferior .
or t h e ordi c w o r d s a r e a s i f interwove n wit h t h e basi c
t e x t u r e o f ou r language , an d hav e a clea r concep t inseparabl y
associated wit h them , bu t t h e Germa n w o r d s a r e ofte n a s i f
descended fro m eave n an d contai n n o reaso n wh y the y
should denot e t h a t on e concep t r a t h e r tha n an y other , o r i f
they hav e an y suc h reaso n Dane s canno t fee l i t . I f th e
f i r s t an d onl y purpos e w o r d s hav e i s t h a t o f expressin g
concepts, i t i s easil y see n ho w muc h ou r ow n w o r d s deserv e
ET M G I GE ER 25

t o b e preferred . s example s ma y serv e s rgelig


s rg odig tra rig Urte ost 0 t or o t an d
t h e like . I suppos e t h i s i s a l s o t h e n a t u r a l reaso n wh y
most foreig n w o r d s giv e u s a l e s s clea r ide a o f t h e concept s
involved, an d wh y the y a r e sometime s use d whe n w e wan t t o
moderate o r a s i f cove r u p ou r t h o u g h t s . )
Returning t o languag e a n a l y s i s tha t i s precisel y
what t e l l s u s t h e origi n an d caus e o f whateve r w e perceiv e
in language . I f w e g o t o suc h g r e a t l e n g t h s tracin g t h e
sources an d cause s o f everythin g els e i n nature , i t woul d
seem s t r a n g e indee d t o rejec t wha t give s u s t h i s ver y
information abou t huma n language i t i s eas y t o se e ho w
weak an d shak y a l l languag e s t u d y mus t b e withou t t h a t
which i s a s i f i t s ver y soul .
y t h e n a t u r e o f i t s subject , knowledg e o f languag e i s
simply knowledg e o f w o r d s an d ho w t o pu t the m t o g e t h e r -
an incoheren t bod y o f knowledg e abou t a n infinit e numbe r o f
insignificant item s whic h i t i s ver y borin g an d difficul t t o
commit t o memory , especiall y whe n suc h knowledg e i s
supposed t o embrac e severa l languages . Etymolog y i s lik e
t h e s p i r i t o f t h i s dea d mass , t h e bon d whic h h o l d s t h e
individual p a r t s t o g e t h e r an d connect s the m int o a continuou s
chain. S o i t i s onl y n a t u r a l , her e a s i n a l l suc h cases , t o
become i n t e r e s t e d upo n discoverin g t h i s bon d whic h i s t h e
b e s t sig n o f t r u t h an d t h e b e s t ai d t o t h e huma n mind .
rom t h i s s p r i n g s anothe r no t insignifican t ra ti al ene it
o et olog o r languag e a n a l y s i s , t o t h e s t u d e n t s o f
foreign languages . Th e w o r d s t o b e memorize d wil l b e muc h
fewer an d t a x ou r memor y muc h l e s s , whe n clos e a t t e n t i o n i s
paid t o t h e i r mutua l r e l a t i o n s h i p an d derivatio n fro m eac h
o t h e r . I n t h i s wa y onl y t h e ste m w o r d s hav e t o b e d i r e c t l y
memorized b y r o t e , bu t the y 1 a r e t h e l e a s t numerou s i n
a l l languages , an d i n fac t eve n fo r t h e i r memorizatio n n o
small suppor t i s offere d b y t h e derivatives . u t thi s
benefit become s muc h g r e a t e r s t i l l whe n t h e foreig n languag e
26 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

in questio n i s r e l a t e d t o ou r mothe r tongue , o r whe n severa l


foreign language s a r e studie d whic h a r e mutuall y r e l a t e d .
If a perso n observe s t h e s h i f t s onc e an d fo r a l l , h e i s abl e
t o for m t h e w o r d s himself , an d memorizin g the m i n tw o o r
more language s take s l e s s tha n hal f t h e t r o u b l e i t woul d
take t o memoriz e the m i n on e withou t t h i s aid . I t goe s
without sayin g t h a t i f w e wan t t o us e t h i s etymologica l
method i n teachin g children , w e shoul d no t presen t e l a b o r a t e
s y s t e m s o r profoun d investigations , bu t simpl y cal l t h e
a t t e n t i o n o f t h e pupi l t o t h e commones t s h i f t s o f l e t t e r s
between t h e language s h e i s studyin g an d hav e hi m r e c a l l i n
memory t h e correspondin g w o r d s an d form s o f on e i n
performing t h e grammatica l a n a l y s i s o f t h e o t h e r .
In m y opinio n w e follo w a completel y wron g cours e i n
teaching foreig n languages . I f w e s t a r t e d ou t wit h Gree k
and proceede d t o atin , I t a l i a n , an d rench , an d i n t h e
Gothic language s fro m Icelandi c t o Swedish) , German ,
Dutch) an d English , a continuous , unobstructe d advanc e
would b e possible t o whateve r poin t t h e studen t advanced ,
he woul d b e abl e t o comprehen d t h e objec t o f h i s s t u d y t o
i t s innermos t core , withou t encounterin g anythin g
incomprehensible w e woul d c o n s t a n t l y b e abl e t o explai n
l a t e r , unfamilia r phenomen a b y referenc e t o e a r l i e r , familia r
ones - t h e f i r s t requiremen t o f a scientifi c approach . Th e
student woul d lear n a l l o f thes e language s wit h muc h l e s s
t r o u b l e tha n i s no w require d t o lear n t h r e e o f them fo r
t h e huma n min d find s i t easie r t o comprehen d an d memoriz e
many object s connecte d accordin g t o a certai n r u l e s o t h a t
one continuall y t h r o w s l i g h t o n t h e o t h e r ) , tha n j u s t a fe w
which a r e unrelate d an d isolate d - o r ar e a t leas t
represented a s such . I t woul d s t i l l b e perfectl y possibl e t o
s t u d y t h o s e language s mos t diligentl y i n whic h 2 on e
desired t o becom e mos t accomplished . S t a r t i n g wit h atin ,
however, a s i s customar y now , t h e s t u d e n t necessaril y come s
up a g a i n s t hundred s o f concept s whic h h e u n d e r s t a n d s onl y
ET M G I GE ER 2

ever s o vaguely , an d eve n t h a t wit h considerabl e t r o u b l e


such a s gra ar et olog s nta oetr rosod eter
and man y o t h e r s similarl y o ta e ito ad n
anagn sts and man y o t h e r s . T h i s woul d no t hav e t o b e
t h e cas e a t a l l i n Greek , provide d a n appropriatel y compile d
grammar wer e available i n atin , however , g r a n t e d t h e
c h a r a c t e r o f t h e language , t h e r e i s n o possibl e wa y o f
avoiding i t completely . Indee d - mos t conspicuousl y a b s u r d
of a l l - yo u a c t u a l l y hav e t o lear n mos t o f t h e Gree k
grammar alon g wit h t h a t o f atin fo r t h e Gree k w o r d s i n
atin, whic h a r e s o numerous , mostl y follo w t h e i r origina l
Greek inflection s s o t h a t yo u mus t kno w t h o s e i n additio n t o
t h e ati n inflection s i n o r d e r t o b e abl e t o rea d an d u n d e r -
s t a n d atin . owever , eve n i n t h e cas e o f t h e usua l i n c o r -
r e c t approach , languag e a n a l y s i s wil l mak e t h i n g s muc h
easier.
I t woul d tak e m e to o f a r afield , wer e I t o giv e a n
account i n t h i s plac e o f t h e relevanc e o f languag e a n a l y s i s t o
mythology, archaeolog y an d ancien t h i s t o r y . Ther e i s al l
t h e mor e reaso n fo r m e t o p a s s t h i s over , a s i t h a s bee n
discussed i n s o muc h d e t a i l b y o t h e r s t h e sam e i s t r u e o f
i t s usefulnes s i n philosoph y an d t h e mor e exac t discipline s i n
general. I hav e gon e t o suc h lengt h i n dealin g wit h t h e
concept, subdivisio n an d e s s e n t i a l us e o f languag e a n a l y s i s ,
because I w a s anxiou s t o d o awa y wit h wron g idea s an d
prejudices fro m t h e ver y beginning , whic h o t h e r w i s e migh t
d i v e r t t h e a t t e n t i o n o f man y o f m y r e a d e r s fro m a n
etymological investigation . eithe r t h e spac e availabl e no r
t h e topi c permi t a n expositio n an d presentatio n i n r e l a t i v e
d e t a i l o f t h e o r e t i c a l etymolog y i n t h i s place . u t sinc e I d o
not kno w o f an y suc h t o whic h I migh t refer , an d since , o n
t h e o t h e r hand , t h e Roya l Societ y r e q u e s t s ascertainmen t o f
t h e r u l e s upo n whic h t h e derivatio n i n t h e s e language s
i s base d somethin g whic h i n fac t appear s requisit e t o an y
evaluation o f t h e mai n subject ) - I s h a l l now , i n a fe w
28 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

random observations , presen t t h e mos t importan t r u l e s o f


etymology s o a s no t t o hav e t o s t a t e the m i n eac h p a r t i c u l a r
instance l a t e r on .
The f i r s t requiremen t aske d o f t h e languag e analyze r i s
t h e on e equall y aske d o f t h e h i s t o r i a n , viz. , t h a t h e shoul d
be o letel n re di ed e shoul d no t wan t h i s ow n
language o r h i s ow n peopl e t o b e th e o l d e s t an d mos t
outstanding o f a l l , a s Rudbe k an d o t h e r Scandinavian s hav e
done. e shoul d no t clai m omniscience , o r determin e
a r b i t r a r i l y an d a p r i o r i t h e r a t i o n a l e o f unknow n phenomen a
which ca n b e fathome d onl y t h r o u g h h i s t o r i c a l o r empirica l
knowledge, whic h Schl zer, delun g and o t h e r German s hav e
tended t o a s fa r a s ancien t Scandinavi a i s concerned a t t h e
same tim e usuall y dismissin g contemptuousl y an d b y
d i c t a t o r i a l decre e whoeve r h o l d s a differen t opinio n - t h u s
fully revealin g t h e i r ow n ignoranc e t o t h e t r u e s c h o l a r .
oth a t t i t u d e s represen t a kin d o f madness on e i s mor e
sufferable only becaus e time s hav e changed . e laug h a t
t h e i r r a t i o n a l p a t r i o t i s m o f t h e former , w e a r e annoye d a t
t h e conceite d rudenes s o f t h e l a t t e r . o r shoul d t h e
language analyze r hav e an y fixe d ide a a s t o wher e h e ma y
look fo r h i s informatio n an d wher e not , bu t shoul d accep t i t
wherever i t appear s - b e t h a t i n t h e languag e unde r s t u d y
or i n ebrew .
In o r d e r t o fulfil l t h i s requiremen t w e mus t secondl y
require o f hi m t h a t h e posses s t h e mos t e tensi e no ledge
o lang ages possible . u t i s i t no t t r u e , someon e wil l
argue, t h a t w e shoul d see k a languag e i n i t s e l f n di f
so, wha t nee d doe s t h e etymologis t hav e fo r foreig n
languages f cours e i t i s t r u e t h a t f i r s t o f a l l
and mos t carefull y w e mus t examin e t h e languag e i n questio n
by itself . u t a languag e a l s o involve s t h e variou s idioms ,
and thes e i n t u r n eve r s o g r a d u a l l y p a s s int o r e l a t e d
languages - whic h agai n fad e int o r e l a t e d languag e c l a s s e s .
ow wh o i s goin g t o fi x t h e limi t i n advanc e wher e t h i s
ET M G I GE ER 29

r e l a t i o n s h i p come s t o a n end , o r beyon d whic h w e s h a l l no t


have t o exten d o r st d Th e onl y wa y t o apprais e t h i s
relationship i s b y studyin g th e language s i n questio n - i.e. ,
by undertakin g t h e ver y t a s k f i r s t claime d t o b e
unnecessary. Everyon e undoubtedl y i s willin g t o admi t t h a t
i t i s necessar y t o kno w t h e basi c languag e when , r a t h e r tha n
being completel y origina l a s Gree k an d ebrew) , a languag e
h a s sprun g fro m anothe r a s Danish , rench , an d English) .
ut eve n i n explainin g th e mos t origina l language s o f a l l i t
i s no t a ba d ide a t o b e familia r wit h t h e o t h e r s o f t h e
same c l a s s . Michaelis h a s show n t h a t i n o r d e r t o r e a l l y
know ebrew , a n understandin g o f t h e o t h e r rienta l
languages i s required shoul d t h i s kin d o f knowledg e b e
l e s s essentia l t o t h e ordi c etymologis t
In fact , eve n familiarit y wit h completel y foreig n
languages i s no t unprofitable , especiall y t o languag e a n a l y s i s
in general . mon g o t h e r t h i n g s i t ca n b e use d t o refut e
several objection s t o etymology . E.g . t h e objectio n t h a t
even i f a clos e resemblanc e i s foun d betwee n som e w o r d s i n
two languages , t h a t doe s no t r e a l l y prov e anything sinc e i t
may b e eithe r becaus e certai n w o r d s a r e almos t identica l i n
a l l languages , o r becaus e ou t o f t h e numerou s w o r d s o f
which tw o language s consis t som e easil y happe n t o loo k
alike, o r becaus e suc h w o r d s a r e forme d i n accordanc e wit h
t h e n a t u r a l soun d o r n a t u r e o f t h e object s involve d - thes e
being t h e sam e t o a l l nation s - o r finall y becaus e t h e
resemblance i s affecte d an d farfetched . o w i f w e conside r
such language s a s Greenlandic , Mala y o r hinese , w e fin d n o
resemblances, althoug h 5 I suppos e on e mus t admi t t h a t
these, too , a r e languages , they , too , subjec t t o chance ,
capable o f imitatin g n a t u r a l sound , an d ope n t o h a i r s p l i t t i n g
but no t eve n i n t h i s wa y ca n an y resemblanc e b e brough t
out. E.g . ater Germ . ater Icel. adir etc. i s i n
Greenlandic ang tta ebr . se Germ . se s Icel .
se i s ar onet in t h a t language t d i s i lit
0 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

and s o f o r t h .
ne ma y b e sure , therefore , t h a t whereve r resemblance ,
s t r i k i n g resemblance , i s foun d betwee n severa l w o r d s , t h i s
h a s a n a t u r a l cause whethe r t h i s caus e i s origina l kinshi p
between t h e language s i n question , o r thes e w o r d s hav e bee n
picked u p b y on e languag e fro m anothe r t h r o u g h borrowin g i n
l a t e r tim e - t h a t i s ye t t o b e decide d pendin g close r
investigation. renc h i s anothe r languag e fro m whic h t h e
analyzer o f ordi c language s ca n gai n ver y l i t t l e
information, bu t i t i s generall y know n t o b e descende d fro m
atin no w i f w e conside r t h e exten t t o whic h t h e w o r d s o f
t h a t languag e hav e becom e unrecognizabl e an d ho w muc h mor e
so the y woul d b e i f renc h spellin g wa s adapte d mor e t o
c u r r e n t pronunciatio n - t h a t ma y war n u s t o b e somewha t
more cautiou s no t t o condem n a l l resemblance s o r derivation s
a s whimsicalitie s j u s t becaus e no t a l l l e t t e r s a r e alik e i n
t h e w o r d s on e w a n t s t o compar e an d explai n fro m eac h
o t h e r . E.g. , i f on e accept s ent n it sel etc . a s having
come fro m atin , on e ca n h a r d l y den y som e s o r t o f connec -
tion a l s o betwee n ent s no nocte) , sal is is piskis) ,
, , , and Icel . ind r n tt Germ.
a t salt is r ona d ttir Germ. o ter d r
lat r etc.
The etymologis t ma y t h u s us e h i s knowledg e eve n o f
foreign language s t o goo d advantage withou t an y insigh t
into t h e r e l a t e d languages , o n t h e o t h e r hand , i t i s u t t e r l y
futile t o embar k o n languag e a n a l y s i s . T h i s i s t h e mos t
conspicuous fla w i n t h e etymolog y o f t h e ncient s the y
knew l i t t l e o r nothin g o f o t h e r language s an d wante d 6 t o
derive everythin g fro m t h e i r own . I t wil l suffic e t o quot e
t h e familia r ' l s a no n lucendo' an d ' en s qvo d a d r e s
omnes veniat ' a s example s o f t h e impropriet y o f t h i s .
The languag e analyze r equippe d wit h thes e qualitie s
should a b s t a i n fro m eve r derivin g w o r d s fro m a n e n t i r e
c l a s s o f language s an d neve r quot e an y wor d allegin g i t t o
ET M G I GE ER 1

be Scythian , Sarmatian , Gothic , Gimbrian , eltic , o r th e like ,


but r a t h e r indicat e specificall y i n wha t languag e o r
languages i t i s found fo r experienc e h a s show n t h a t mos t
such w o r d s hav e bee n freel y invente d i n o r d e r t o dignif y
some prejudic e i n a wa y no t easil y countere d sinc e nobod y
knows i n wha t languag e o r idio m t o loo k fo r t h e suspecte d
word o r perhap s sometime s i n o r d e r t o gai n a reputatio n
with t h e ignoran t fo r s c h o l a r s h i p .
ext t o suc h fals e o r suspicious-lookin g a n a l y s e s o f
w o r d s h e mus t especiall y tak e car e t o avoi d ambiguou s e x -
pressions causin g misunderstanding s b y whic h somethin g
perfectly reasonabl e ma y com e t o see m u t t e r l y unreasonabl e
and ridiculous . T o tak e a n example , t h e expressio n ' t h i s
word o es ro t h i s o r t h a t ' h a s bee n use d indiscriminatel y
in numerou s meanings . I t ma y mea n t h a t t h e wor d itsel f i s
e i t h e r a ste m wor d o r a t l e a s t o f unknow n origi n bu t r e c u r s
in anothe r language , p a r t i c u l a r l y on e whic h i s demonstrabl y
older. E.g. , whe n i t i s sai d t h a t at. t comes fro m Gr .
, o r Dan . en fro m Icel. ein
T h i s expressio n i s a l s o use d whe n a wor d come s fro m
one i n anothe r languag e - eve n thoug h t h i s l a t t e r r o o t wor d
in fac t occur s a l s o i n t h e mor e recen t language , a l b e i t e i t h e r
in a n a l t e r e d form , o r els e t h e forme r wor d wa s mad e b y a
derivation no w l o s t an d inexplicabl e withi n t h e mor e recen t
language. E.g . r . reine from regina and t h i s fro m rex ,
although re rege i s a l s o foun d i n r . roi Dan. et aag
from Icel . lo and t h i s fro m li a i.e . 't o close' , becaus e
this manne r o f derivatio n i s quit e usua l i n Icelandic ,
witness o et aag, Snefaag ) fro m i a fyge), not ytte )
from ni ta nyde), rot rud ) fro m ri ta bryde), an d
many o t h e r s . I n suc h case s i t r e a l l y seem s t h a t t h e s e
w o r d s wer e incorporate d int o t h e mor e recen t languag e a s
completely differen t an d eac h remodele d i n i t s ow n fashion ,
without an y recollectio n o f t h e i r basi c kinship .
wor d i s a l s o sai d t o com e fro m anothe r when ,
2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

though itsel f nativ e t o t h e language , i t s ste m wor d o r o t h e r


r e l a t e d w o r d s b y whic h i t migh t b e explaine d hav e bee n
l o s t , suc h a s Dan . g from t h e Icel . a d j . i r 'living' .
Similarly whe n a wor d i s t r u l y foreig n an d h a s bee n
incorporated int o t h e languag e b y accident , need , o r i n d o l -
ence. E.g . oet fro m o ta and t h i s fro m
er es from r en and t h i s fro m as ine from
Germ. as ine and t h i s fro m r . a ine an d t h i s fro m
at. a ina and t h i s finall y fro m Gr . .
u r t h e r whe n a wor d i s t h e r e s u l t o f a direc t an d
blind t r a n s l a t i o n fro m anothe r language , suc h a s ord
es ri else from rd es rei ng nders ge from nter
s en ndart from Germ . ndart aledel from ars
orationis
inally a l s o whe n a wor d owe s i t s origi n an d existenc e
t o another , t h e l a t t e r e i t h e r havin g occasione d t h e forme r o r
t h e forme r bein g compose d o f o r derive d fro m t h e l a t t e r
for instance , a as fro m t h e cit y o f a as s r
o en rlig from r and o e
Every b i t o f informatio n i n an y on e o f t h e s e r e s p e c t s
may b e goo d an d t r u e provide d onl y t h a t i t i s c o r r e c t l y
understood an d on e no t take n fo r t h e o t h e r . he n w e sa y
t h a t a Danis h wor d h a s com e fro m a n Icelandi c word , o r a n
Icelandic wor d fro m a ati n o r Gree k word , t h i s doe s no t
mean simpl y t h a t i t h a s bee n introduce d int o Denmar k fro m
Iceland, o r int o Icelan d fro m I t a l y an d Greece , bu t t h a t i t
h a s remaine d i n Danis h fro m t h e ol d ors e languag e no w
only foun d i n Icelan d wher e accordingl y informatio n 8
concerning t h a t wor d mus t b e obtained) , o r t h a t t h i s ol d
orse languag e whic h no w i s use d i n Icelan d h a s ha d som e
ancient connectio n wit h Gree k an d ati n b y whic h apparentl y
a numbe r o f w o r d s ma y b e commo n t o both . Thu s i t woul d
probably soun d s t r a n g e i f w e sai d t h a t at. en s ha d
a c t u a l l y com e fro m Icel . nn i.e. 'fair , lovely' . ol d Dan. en
e.g. i n t h e b a l l a d s den ene owever, i f w e bea r
ET M G I GE ER

in min d t h a t t h e origina l mai n concep t o f t h e wor d en s i s


beauty, no t love , a s ca n b e see n b y t h e p l u r a l eneres e.g .
di endi an d th e w o r d s derive d fro m it t h a t i t i s no t j u s t
a prope r nam e but , lik e almos t a l l prope r names , originall y a
common noun t h a t i t i s a n ol d I t a l i c , no t a Gree k word
t h a t , o n th e o t h e r hand , t h e o t h e r r e l a t e d w o r d s i n ati n
cannot b e r o o t w o r d s , sinc e the y a r e a l l longe r an d mor e
derived - the n i t migh t n o longe r see m quit e s o unreasonabl e
t o explai n i t b y a r o o t wor d whic h h a s bee n l o s t i n I t a l y
along wit h t h e ol d I t a l i c languages , bu t s t i l l remain s i n t h e
g r e a t an d ver y ol d Gothi c c l a s s o f languages , immediatel y
adjacent t o t h e orth . o r i t i s c l e a r l y impossibl e t o den y
t h e obviou s connectio n betwee n s o man y o t h e r ati n an d
Gothic w o r d s fo r example , i n additio n t o t h o s e a l r e a d y
mentioned o n p . 0 s a er orn a t long s
sat r edo elle ad a Icel. s a r orn t
a t l ng r sadd r t ilia at ad a
s soo n a s w e tak e u p a languag e fo r investigation , w e
notice t h a t i t p r e s e n t s tw o ver y differen t aspect s t o t h e
observer o r f a l l s int o tw o p a r t s , a s i t were . n e i s t h e
r a w an d loos e m a t t e r withou t whic h th e languag e woul d no t
exist a t all th e o t h e r , t h e mor e o r l e s s a r t i f i c i a l for m
and combinatio n withou t 9 whic h t h e r a w m a t t e r migh t
well b e foun d recorde d i n a book , bu t coul d no t b e spoke n
by an y ma n o r t r u l y c o n s t i t u t e a language . Th e forme r p a r t
a r e t h e individua l w o r d s t h e lexica l items) , t h e l a t t e r t h e i r
form change s an d way s o f combination , o r t h e syste m o f t h e
language th e grammatica l items) . o w i f w e wan t t o
compare severa l languages , an d i f t h i s compariso n i s t o b e
complete an d t o enabl e u s t o judg e o f t h e i r kinship , age , an d
o t h e r circumstances , w e mus t necessaril y tak e bot h o f t h e s e
p a r t s o f t h e language s int o consideratio n and , i n p a r t i c u l a r ,
not forge t t h e grammatica l p a r t fo r experienc e h a s show n
lexical agreemen t t o b e mos t uncertain . Throug h th e
intercourse o f nation s a n unbelievabl e numbe r o f w o r d s ma y
RIGI T E D RS E G G E

find t h e i r wa y fro m on e languag e int o another , howeve r


completely d i s s i m i l a r the y ma y b e i n origi n an d kind . Thu s
a considerabl e amoun t o f Danis h h a s com e int o Greenlandi c
and muc h ortugues e an d Spanis h int o Mala y an d Tagalog .
Grammatical agreemen t i s a muc h mor e certai n sig n o f
kinship o r basi c unity fo r i t wil l b e foun d t h a t a
language, whe n mixe d wit h another , ver y r a r e l y i f eve r take s
up for m change s o r inflection s fro m t h a t o t h e r language , bu t
r a t h e r t h e o t h e r wa y around , lose s i t s own . Thu s Englis h
h a s no t take n u p an y Icelandi c o r renc h inflection , bu t o n
t h e c o n t r a r y h a s l o s t man y o f t h e ol d flection s o f n g l o -
Saxon nor , s i m i l a r l y , h a s Danis h take n u p Germa n endings ,
nor Spanis h Gothi c o r rabi c ones . T h i s typ e o f agreement ,
which i s t h e mos t importan t an d t h e mos t certain , h a s
nevertheless s o f a r bee n a l m o s t e n t i r e l y ignore d i n t h e
derivation o f languages , an d t h i s i s t h e g r e a t e s t an d t h e
principal e r r o r i n mos t o f w h a t h a s bee n 50 w r i t t e n s o f a r
in t h i s m a t t e r t h i s i s t h e reaso n i t i s s o uncertai n an d
h a s suc h ver y mino r scientifi c value .
hichever languag e h a s t h e mor e comple x gramma r i s
t h e mor e unmixed , t h e mor e original , olde r an d close r t o t h e
source fo r grammatica l inflection s an d ending s a r e
c o n s t a n t l y wor n of f whe n ne w language s emerge , an d requir e
a ver y lon g tim e an d a minimu m o f intercours e w i t h o t h e r
nations t o develo p an d a r r a n g e themselve s anew . Thu s
Danish i s muc h simple r t h a n Icelandic , Englis h simple r t h a n
nglo-Saxon t h i s i s a l s o t h e r e l a t i o n o f Moder n t o l a s s i -
cal Greek , o f I t a l i a n t o atin , o f Germa n t o Moesogothic,
and s o f o r t h i n a l l t h e case s t h a t w e know .
language , howeve r mixed , belong s t o t h e sam e l a n -
guage c l a s s a s another , whe n t h e mos t e s s e n t i a l , mos t con -
c r e t e , mos t indispensabl e anda very f i r s t w o r d s , t h e foun -
dations o f language , a r e commo n t o the m both . I n c o n t r a s t ,
nothing ca n b e inferre d abou t origina l kinshi p o f language s
from technica l t e r m s , w o r d s o f c o u r t e s y an d commerce , i.e .
ET M G I GE ER 5

t h a t p a r t o f languag e whic h associatio n wit h o t h e r s , socia l


intercourse, culture , an d s c h o l a r l y activit y hav e rendere d i t
necessary l a t e r t o ad d ont o t h e o l d e s t vocabulary fo r i t
depends o n man y circumstances , whic h ca n b e know n onl y
from h i s t o r y , whethe r a peopl e h a s simpl y borrowe d t h e s e
w o r d s fro m t h e tongue s o f o t h e r s o r develope d the m ou t o f
t h e i r own . Thu s Englis h i s r i g h t l y considere d t o belon g t o
t h e Gothi c languag e c l a s s , an d mor e p a r t i c u l a r l y t o t h e
Saxon branc h o f i t s Germani c mai n division fo r t h e e n t i r e
basic stoc k o f t h e Englis h vocabular y i s Saxon , suc h a s
ea en eart sea land an ead air e e and oot
orse o al ill good great little ole al
t o e to a e lo e go see stand o o t ro
toget er e t c . Th e pronoun s an d t h e numerals , i n p a r t i c u l a r ,
a r e t h e ver y l a s t t o disappea r i n t h e cas e o f blendin g wit h
languages o f a differen t kind i n 51 English , fo r example ,
a l l pronoun s a r e o f Gothic , especiall y Saxon , origin .
hen correspondence s a r e foun d betwee n t w o language s
in suc h w o r d s , i n fac t s o man y o f the m t h a t r u l e s ca n b e
deduced fo r t h e s h i f t s o f l e t t e r s fro m on e t o t h e o t h e r , a
basic kinshi p i s foun d betwee n t h e s e languages especiall y
when the y a r e matche d b y s i m i l a r i t i e s i n t h e s t r u c t u r e an d
s y s t e m o f t h e t w o languages fo r exampl e

Gr. corr. t o at. a a and to s l s


ater o l s
o '' ag s '' a r a
o al s eol . '' lg s

rom t h i s w e se e t h a t G r . in ati n ofte n become s a


and o often y comparin g mor e w o r d s i t i s possibl e t o
deduce man y mor e s h i f t r u l e s sinc e i n additio n considerabl e
agreement i s o f cours e foun d betwee n t h e gramma r o f ati n
and Greek , w e a r e full y justifie d i n concludin g t h a t a basi c
kinship o b t a i n s betwee n t h e s e language s - alread y a
6 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

wellknown fac t whic h t o elaborat e furthe r doe s no t concer n


us i n thi s place .
languag e ma y bea r a ver y considerabl e resemblanc e
to anothe r bot h i n vocabular y an d system , an d stil l i t ma y
be almos t impossibl e t o discove r an y agreemen t whatsoeve r
by studyin g a tex t translate d fro m on e int o th e other . o r
this reaso n i t i s ver y imprope r t o dra w conclusion s
concerning th e agreemen t betwee n unknow n language s o n th e
basis o f translation s o f th e ord's ra er a s ha s bee n don e
for s o long , an d a s indirectl y advocate d onc e mor e b y
delung i n his Mithridates . n e mus t kno w a language , jus t
like an y othe r object , i f on e want s t o hav e an y opinio n 52
about it ther e i s probabl y n o shortcu t t o thi s goal .
Thus, comparin g a Gree k tex t wit h a goo d ati n translatio n
thereof, o r vic e versa , on e ca n hardl y believ e tha t ther e i s
the slightes t connectio n betwee n thes e languages , an d ye t i t
has bee n prove d bot h historicall y an d etymologicall y tha t
almost al l o f th e ati n languag e ha s it s origi n i n Greek .
The differen t point s o f vie w take n b y variou s grammarian s i n
looking a t th e sam e thin g i n tw o languages , an d th e
different way s the y presen t exactl y equivalen t features , ma y
also ver y easil y blin d someon e wh o himsel f ha s n o thoroug h
insight int o th e structur e an d inne r essenc e o f th e language s
involved. o r instanc e th e ati n fourt h declensio n seem s t o
represent a radica l departur e fro m Greek , bu t i n fac t agree s
perfectly wit h it , bein g n o mor e an d n o les s tha n a
contraction o f th e third , correspondin g exactl y t o th e Gree k
words i n which kee p throughout, e.g . . on-
sequently, i t i s onl y polysyllable s tha t ar e sai d t o follo w
the fourt h declensio n i n atin fo r monosyllable s ar e no t
contracted, e.g . s s s is not s s and i n th e plur . s es
whereas i n Gree k eve n monosyllable s ar e contracted , a t leas t
in th e plur . for and . lso, on e languag e ma y
have los t som e word s o f th e origina l commo n stock , th e
other perhap s som e others o r on e languag e ma y hav e
ET M G I GE ER

developed o r take n ove r ne w w o r d s a t a l a t e r time , t h e


o t h e r languag e o t h e r s , forme d i n anothe r wa y an d take n fro m
another source . Th e sam e thin g ma y happe n i n th e cas e o f
endings. l l t h i s ma y undoubtedl y mak e wha t i s i n fac t i n
itself ver y closel y r e l a t e d appea r a s highl y dissimila r t o t h e
casual observer .
ut eve n thos e w o r d s whic h r e a l l y occu r i n bot h l a n -
guages an d r e a l l y a r e t h e sam e i n bot h ca n r a r e l y b e use d
in t h e sam e connection , becaus e meanin g an d usag e a r e
identical onl y i n t h e r a r e s t case s eve n i n tw o ver y closel y
r e l a t e d language s - eve n thoug h 5 th e word s ar e
obviously th e same . E.g. , Icel. l r 'the ston e floo r i n t h e
front p a r t o f a co w barn' , bu t Engl . loor ' a floo r i n
general' at. o s ' a h e a r t h ' , bu t o r t . ogo r . e
'fire' Germ . e 'at' , Engl . 'b y mean s of' Swed . id
and Dan. ed show t h e sam e r e l a t i o n - indee d countles s
examples o f t h i s ca n b e enumerated . Th e easies t wa y o f a l l
t o s a t i s f y onesel f t h a t t h i s i s so , however , i s b y takin g a
Swedish o r a Germa n boo k an d t r a n s l a t i n g som e passag e int o
Danish, bu t s o a s everywher e t o r e t a i n t h e sam e wor d i f i t
i s foun d i n ou r language t h i s wil l unfailingl y r e s u l t i n a
quite insufferabl e an d perhap s unintelligibl e kin d o f Danish .
- ccordingl y i t seem s t o sho w j u s t a s poo r insigh t int o
t h e n a t u r e o f huma n language s a s i t show s poo r t a s t e , whe n
some peopl e conside r i t mos t correct , i n t r a n s l a t i n g fro m
Icelandic, t o icelandiz e a s muc h a s possibl e i n bot h w o r d s
and p h r a s e s . T h i s onl y s e r v e s t o mak e t h e t r a n s l a t i o n dul l
and u n a t t r a c t i v e , althoug h t h e origina l perhap s wa s winsom e
and smooth . a r fro m bein g t h e r i g h t wa y o f usin g
Icelandic, nothin g i s perhap s mor e harmfu l t o th e
advancement o f t h e s t u d y o f t h i s language . u r languag e
h a s a l r e a d y achieve d sufficien t s t a b i l i t y an d independenc e
t h a t i t ough t neithe r t o b e icelandize d no r germanized w e
should b e conten t t o w r i t e i t a s genuinel y Danis h a s w e
possibly can. )
8 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

ut, t o retur n t o ou r subject-matte r th e sam e wor d


may no t onl y hav e a dissimila r meanin g i n tw o languages , a s
when th e concep t ha s bee n widene d i n on e cas e o r narrowe d
in th e other , o r perhap s narrowe d dow n fro m a genera l
meaning t o certai n specia l case s o f thos e comprise d unde r i t
in on e languag e bu t t o other s i n th e other , o r fro m bein g
concrete ha s becom e figurativ e o r abstract , an d th e like i t
also happen s tha t th e sam e wor d ha s directl y opposit e
meanings i n tw o languages , indee d sometime s withi n on e
language. Thi s i s th e cas e whe n th e basi c meanin g wa s
neutral, bu t 5 late r cam e t o b e use d no w i n a good , no w
in a ba d sense . E.g. , at. os tis originally mean t an y
stranger, bu t wa s late r use d abou t th e tw o kind s o f
strangers 1 ) ' a guest' , fro m whic h i n th e Slavi c language s
Russ. gost ', ol . go an d others , i n th e Gothi c language s
Germ. ast Icel. g str - o r perhap s i t rathe r cam e int o
atin fro m thes e languages fro m thi s also , b y th e way ,
the othe r ati n wor d os es which i s simpl y anothe r
pronunciation o f th e sam e word thu s als o r . te etc.
2) 'a n enemy' , whic h wa s th e meanin g i t eventuall y retaine d
in atin . Example s o f othe r interestin g change s i n meanin g
are Icel . r ndi Germ. re nd Icel . eigr mortivicinus) ,
Germ. eige Icel. nenna 'fee l lik e doing') , Dan . n nde
g ta 'be abl e to') , Dan . gide t i 'time'), Dan . i e tr
'gay, cheerful') , Dan . aad 'frolicky , flippant') , Swed . t
'lecherous, impudent') .
hat ha s bee n sai d her e abou t differenc e i n th e mean -
ings o f relate d word s i s equall y tru e wit h respec t t o th e
forms o f relate d words , whic h ma y als o presen t ver y grea t
dissimilarities i n spit e o f unquestionabl e kinship . I shal l
speak late r o f tru e for m o r lette r differences her ew e
shall onl y conside r th e ending s o r inflections , wher e clearl y
the sam e thin g mus t occur . suall y on e languag e ha s
carried ou t on e smal l chang e i n th e ending s an d anothe r
language another , eac h i n i t s ow n way . Sometime s on e
ET M G I GE ER 9

language h a s l o s t som e endings , t h e o t h e r o t h e r s , an d i n


addition bot h hav e perhap s develope d o r take n u p ne w ones .
Sometimes on e languag e h a s use d th e sam e ending s t o denot e
another aspec t o f t h e concept . Thu s t h e ati n a b l a t i v e s
have becom e nominative s i n I t a l i a n , Spanish , an d ortuguese
s i m i l a r l y t h e Icelandi c accusative s hav e becom e nominative s i n
Danish an d Swedish . T h i s ma y eve n tak e plac e i n tw o
languages havin g t h e sam e numbe r o f case s an d i s easil y
explained b y assumin g t h a t on e languag e 55 require d a
different endin g tha n t h e o t h e r i n a numbe r o f frequen t
instances, o r t h a t t h e meanin g o f a n endin g originall y wa s
not ver y specifi c bu t extende d t o severa l instances . I n t h i s
way t h e Gree k vocativ e h a s becom e t h e nominativ e
o ta in atin i n t h e ol d Gree k languag e i t wa s both . I n
t h i s wa y t h e ati n nominative s i n o have becom e accusative s
in Icelandic , t h e w o r d s i n questio n havin g acquire d t h e r e a
new nominativ e i n a assio Icel . assia acc . assio o r
ordo Icel. orda acc. ordo o r ord Se e Rask' s I c e -
landic grammar , p . 2 .
hen t h e sam e wor d i s foun d i n severa l languages , i t
must b e presume d t o belon g t o t h e languag e i n whic h i t i s
found i n i t s mos t indispensable , concret e an d genera l
meaning fo r instance , Swed. o e Dan . aag ' a boy '
undoubtedly h a s com e fro m innis h o a ' a son , a cub' ,
because t h i s w o r d s h a s a muc h mor e extensive , muc h olde r
and mor e essentia l meaning Icel . l i 'the pal m o f t h e hand '
Dan. ei undoubtedly h a s com e fro m ymri c lla 'hand' ,
Gaelic l because t h i s meanin g i s f a r mor e indispensabl e
in t h e language .
If a wor d i s foun d onl y i n on e o r i n a fe w language s
of a n e n t i r e c l a s s o f language s an d i s completel y unknow n i n
t h e o t h e r s , wherea s i t i s foun d throughou t som e other ,
adjacent c l a s s o f languages , t h e wor d i n questio n h a s i n a l l
p r o b a b i l i t y com e int o t h e forme r fro m t h e l a t t e r fo r
instance Dan . e te 'th e lef t hand ' an d e t aandet ' l e f t -
0 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

handed' fro m innish- appis h g e t t a aplandi c g t innish


si genit . den 'a hand ' an d tt 'one-handed' Icel. ot
'a house , a smal l farm' , inn- . g atte apl . te inn.
ota an d t h e like .
hen a wor d remains , a s i t were , singl e an d isolate d
in on e language , withou t 56 an y apparen t origi n an d w i t h -
out an y derivative s o r a t b e s t onl y a few , wherea s i n som e
o t h e r languag e t h e wor d i n questio n eithe r find s i t s clea r
origin i n th e cas e o f a derivatio n o r compound ) o r els e h a s
engendered a whol e lin e o f derivative s i n th e cas e o f a r o o t
word) an d t h u s appear s t o b e completel y wove n int o t h a t
language - w e ca n conclud e t h a t t h i s wor d h a s com e fro m
t h e l a t t e r languag e int o t h e former . o r instance , Icel .
inro Dan . nr g from Germ . i e n r s Icel . s ia l ' a
document' fro m inn- . ia l an d t h i s fro m on iaella 'I
write', an d man y o t h e r s Icel . l 'a bonfire , a blaze' , Dan .
et aal from inn- . ola 'bur n i n t r . ) ' , oaalda 'bur n
t r a n s . ) ' , an d man y o t h e r s Dan . orst rre from Germ .
st ren erst ren erst ren and o t h e r s .
If a wor d lack s th e for m change s whic h a r e s t a n d a r d
for t h a t wor d c l a s s i n t h e language , an d i f i t i s foun d i n
another languag e whos e syste m doe s no t admi t t h e inflection s
lacking i n t h a t wor d - the n mos t likel y i t h a s com e int o t h e
former fro m t h e l a t t e r . E.g . Icel . ga all g l ga alt
Dan. ga el have n o form s o f comparison , ldre and ldst
being fro m a differen t positiv e Germ . alt l t e r l t e s t
accordingly a derivatio n fro m ebr . ' la ' l might no t
be a l t o g e t h e r unlikely*) . Similarl y th e pron . s s which
lacks t h e neute r gende r an d t h e remainin g cas e forms , whic h
a r e take n fro m ad Germ . der die das a s a l s o i n n g l o -

*) In this connection I must point out also that is very frequentl y transpose d i n Icelandic derivative s
stemming fro m ga all e.g. rg r or, mor e often , rg l ir 'the very ol d on e nam e o f a giant)',
g lingr and g l ingr 'a year-ol d lamb' , in whic h th e orde r o f roo t letter s i s the sam e a s i n ebr .
gl
ET M G I GE ER 1

Saxon se seo and i n Moesogoth . , can b e derive d fro m


ebr. which lack s t h o s e sam e inflection s i n
accordance wit h t h e n a t u r e o f t h e language .
e shoul d no t hop e t o fin d t h e t r u e origi n o f a l l
w o r d s b y mean s o f languag e a n a l y s i s . Man y w o r d s a r e ste m
w o r d s fo r thos e w e ca n onl y poin t t o p a r a l l e l w o r d s i n
o t h e r language s an d t o r e l a t e d o r derive d w o r d s withi n t h e
language itself . e hav e don e t h e b e s t w e ca n if , 5
through those , w e manag e t o trac k dow n th e f i r s t an d o l d e s t
form an d meaning , i n s h o r t , t h e basi c for m an d t h e basi c
concept o f t h a t e n t i r e s t r a i n o f w o r d s . par t fro m t h a t , i t
i s n o us e citin g th e sam e wor d fro m o t h e r languages , unles s
i t ca n b e show n t h a t i t i s olde r i n on e o f thos e an d
probably fro m t h a t h a s com e int o t h e languag e studied .
ointing out , e.g. , i n t h e cas e o f Icel. et r etri betst )
e t b e t s t u r ) e t r t h a t t h i s i s t h e sam e a s Dan . edre
edst Engl . etter e s t Germ . esser e s t etc., i s o f n o
avail, becaus e i t b r i n g s u s n o close r t o t h e source . n th e
o t h e r hand , i f w e coul d plausibl y sho w i t t o b e t h e sam e a s
Gr. , , , - t h a t woul d see m no t t o b e
without w o r t h , becaus e Gree k i s olde r tha n Icelandi c an d
t h u s close r t o t h e source , i f no t t h e sourc e itsel f o f w h a t
they ma y hav e i n common .
The ste m w o r d s revea l themselve s b y t h e i r brevity ,
simplicity an d concret e meaning . I t goe s withou t sayin g t h a t
a s lon g a s w e fin d compositio n an d derivation , w e s t i l l hav e
not reache d t h e bas e wor d - althoug h w e ma y i n fac t hav e
reached th e o l d e s t wor d no w remaining . owever , w e mus t
again distinguis h her e betwee n derivationa l s y l l a b l e s an d
those s h o r t necessar y ending s o r formativ e s y l l a b l e s b y
which a wor d i s f i r s t a s i f incorporate d int o t h e languag e
and equippe d t o receiv e t h e inflection s whic h a r e prope r t o i t
according t o i t s n a t u r e . E.g . , Icel. in r canno t b e
called derive d w o r d s , i n s p i t e o f and ur , fo r the y a r e
only mark s o f th e nominative . I n contrast , a i s i s a
2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

derived word , becaus e althoug h s i s j u s t t h e for m ending ,


i s i s a derivationa l for m s h a r e d b y numerou s w o r d s o f
atin t h u s w e a r e le d t o loo k fo r a s h o r t e r r o o t whic h i n
fact seem s t o appea r i n t h e ver b a In Icel . ingast 'see k
friendship, mak e friend s with' , st i s for m ending , ga d e r i v a -
tional ending , an d in t h e r o o t .
58 he n w e wan t t o compar e w o r d s , w e mus t carefull y
s e p a r a t e t h e r o o t fro m a l l o t h e r p a r t s i f t h e r o o t s agree ,
t h e kinshi p o f t h e tw o w o r d s i s incontrovertible , howeve r
d i s s i m i l a r t h e i r derivationa l s y l l a b l e s an d for m endings .
ut specia l car e mus t b e take n l e s t w e dissolv e o r moles t
t h e r o o t itself i f w e do , i t t a k e s o n a fals e appearanc e
and confuse s t h e observer . Tak e e.g . o ggelig om- i s
a prepositio n i n composition , elig a derivationa l endin g a s i n
gl delig isselig and o t h e r s g i s doubled , becaus e i t i s
found betwee n tw o vowels , an d frequently come s fro m in
derivation. Th e r o o t accordingl y i s g o r g which i s
now r a t h e r c l e a r l y see n t o com e fro m Icel . gr 'mind ,
mood', ad ggia 'think' i n othe r word s o ggelig means
'who think s about , whos e min d an d dispositio n i s directe d
t o w a r d s something , wh o c a r e s abou t it' . Th e Icelander s s a y
ad gsa rn wher e w e sa y at t n e aa
hen w e s t r i p a l l w o r d s o f t h e i r extension s an d
additions i n t h i s manner , w o r d s whic h a r e complet e s t r a n g e r s
t o eac h o t h e r ca n ofte n com e t o resembl e eac h o t h e r . S o w e
must b e extremel y carefu l no t t o mi x u p unrelate d w o r d s o r
mistake a r o o t for m i n i t s o l d e s t shap e fo r a new , c u r r e n t
word i n anothe r language . e hav e n o o t h e r guidelin e her e
than meaning , whic h nee d no t b e t h e sam e a t a l l , a s w e hav e
seen above , bu t shoul d a t l e a s t exhibi t a certai n affinit y an d
relation, fo r i f t h e concep t o f on e wor d i s e n t i r e l y alie n t o
t h a t o f t h e other , t h e w o r d s themselve s a r e no t r e l a t e d
e i t h e r . E.g. , t h e above-mentione d r o o t g i s no t i n t h e
l e a s t r e l a t e d t o t h e Danis h wor d et g which i s a ful l an d
c u r r e n t wor d i n moder n Danis h fro m gge in Icel . gg
ET M G I GE ER

from gg a a s th e meaning s o f both , havin g absolutel y


nothing i n common , wil l t e l l us . Thes e l a s t tw o r u l e s a r e
violated ver y frequentl y b y lda t h i s 59 r e n d e r s h i s
work almos t completel y useles s althoug h o t h e r w i s e compile d
with muc h acutenes s an d a goo d knowledg e o f language .
J u s t a s t h e meanin g an d t h e endin g o f tw o w o r d s nee d
not b e exactl y identica l i n o r d e r fo r u s t o clai m t h e i r
identity, t h e ful l form s o f t h e r o o t s nee d no t hav e ever y
single l e t t e r i n commo n either i f a l l t h r e e t h i n g s , viz . t h e
meaning an d t h e doubl e form s fo ending an d root , wer e
s h a r e d identically , i t woul d b e exactl y th e sam e wor d an d
t h e sam e language . ha t make s i t mor e tha n on e singl e
word an d languag e i s d i s s i m i l a r i t y i n on e o r severa l o f
t h e s e r e s p e c t s , an d w e hav e j u s t a s muc h reaso n t o expec t i t
in on e respec t a s i n another . ha t wit h t h e infinit e
d i v e r s i t y i n culture , mentality , views , an d way s o f thinkin g
found fro m natio n t o nation , indee d fro m ma n t o man , i t i s
easy t o understan d t h a t t h e mas s o f idea s denote d b y
language, constitutin g t h e e n t i r e t r e a s u r e o f concept s
appropriated b y a people , canno t b e exactl y t h e sam e i n
several, ofte n widel y separated , nations . n d wha t wit h t h e
nuances o f huma n speech , t h e difference s i n t h e makeu p o f
t h e voca l o r g a n s - whic h a r e s o important , i n fact , t h a t
even s t r a n g e r s w e hav e talke d wit h onl y onc e ca n normall y
be recognize d b y u s solel y b y t h e i r voice , withou t bein g see n
- i t i s j u s t a s n a t u r a l t h a t t h i s multitud e o f w o r d s a d m i t s
an almos t infinit e d i v e r s i t y o f pronunciatio n an d for m i n
different nations .
There a r e h a r d l y an y tw o l e t t e r s s o d i s s i m i l a r i n an y
alphabet t h a t the y ma y no t b e foun d t o a l t e r n a t e i n som e
language o r o t h e r . I t follow s t h a t i f on e take s t h e l i b e r t y
of changin g an y l e t t e r i n a wor d a t pleasur e t o an y o t h e r
l e t t e r wanted , n o tw o w o r d s ca n probabl y eve r b e foun d s o
different a s t o preven t etymologizin g the m t o g e t h e r , an d
t h a t - s t r a n g e s t o f a l l - i n s p i t e o f t h e fac t t h a t 60
RIGI T E D RS E G GE

other, irrefutabl e example s ca n i n fac t be cite d fo r al l o f


those changes . Suc h case s aboun d i n Vossius, Ihre , and
partially achter, in th e introduction s t o thei r work s tha t I
mentioned earlier . u t i t i s especiall y tru e o f Vossius , an d
in fac t th e lexica l etymolog y whic h follow s i n hi s wor k
appears extremel y unsuccessfu l fo r th e mos t part . o r coul d
it b e otherwise , fo r h e ha s onl y use d on e source , viz . Greek ,
but ati n i s compose d o f Gree k an d th e othe r ancien t Itali c
languages. I t i s tru e tha t thes e hav e disappeared , bu t w e
do kno w fo r certai n tha t the y mus t hav e belonge d t o on e o f
the grea t surroundin g group s o f peopl e an d mus t hav e bee n
either elti c o r Gothi c o r Thracian however , sinc e w e kno w
so littl e abou t th e Thracia n group , w e ma y substitut e th e
closely relate d etti c an d Slavi c group s fo r it . Thes e ar e
as man y source s fo r th e analysi s o f ati n o f whic h Vossiu s
has no t availe d himsel f - fo r whic h reaso n hi s wor k coul d
never hav e succeede d unles s h e ha d confine d himsel f t o tha t
which i s i n fac t demonstrabl y o f Gree k origin bu ta s
always h e wante d t o explai n everything .
resumably on e o f th e mai n cause s o f th e grea t numbe r
of absur d analyse s o f word s i s th e failur e t o bea r i n min d
that som e resemblanc e mus t b e presen t a t onc e i n meanin g
and i n for m - althoug h complet e agreemen t i s no t require d -
and tha t thi s resemblanc e shoul d appl y t o th e mai n concep t
and th e essentia l par t o f th e forms . I t i s no t sufficien t
that resemblanc e i s foun d i n som e possibl y incidental )
secondary concep t o r i n a n ending . E.g. , i n th e cas e o f
en s 'qvo d a d re s omne s veniat' , w e hav e sufficien t
similarity i n form , bu t no t eve n th e remotes t relationshi p o f
concepts. I n l s 'a no n lucendo' w e hav e agai n sufficien t
similarity i n form ye t th e nou n lack s som e mar k o f
negation t o represen t th e non and th e sam e wor d canno t
have tw o opposit e meaning s unles s bot h ar e subsume d unde r
one mai n concept however , n o suc h genera l 61 concep t i s
found whic h subsume s bot h ligh t an d darkness . esides ,
ET M G I GE ER 5

being dar k i s j u s t a mino r featur e o f a grove . y wor d


analyses suc h a s thes e etymolog y h a s incurre d t h e contemp t
and derisio n o f man y people , ofte n quit e j u s t i f i a b l y so se e
e.g. t h e ver y causti c bu t w e l l - w r i t t e n a r t i c l e on der l
seelig eit der ort ors er i n t h e th issu e o f e tr ge r
ri tis en istorie der e ts en ra e etc .
Returning no w t o ou r mai n subject , i t serve s a s a n -
o t h e r importan t c o r r o b o r a t i o n o f t h e c o r r e c t n e s s o f a d e r i -
vation, whic h anybod y concerne d wit h t r u t h an d c e r t a i n t y
ought no t t o overlook , whe n o t h e r language s hav e forme d a
word i n t h e sam e wa y fo r t h e sam e concept e.g . t h e above -
mentioned w o r d s gel orde oder str
The a l t e r n a t i o n s an d exchange s o f sound s bein g s o
numerous i n huma n speech , w e woul d b e face d wit h infinit e
confusion here , di d no t atur e n o l e s s her e tha n everywher e
else) follo w certai n r u l e s i n a l l o f i t s abundance . Thes e
r u l e s w e mus t the n carefull y fin d ou t an d accuratel y abid e
by. ha t pit y t h a t c o r r e c t spelling orthography ) i s s o
i r r e g u l a r l y an d sometime s wrongl y construe d t h a t i t ough t
r a t h e r t o b e calle d incorrec t s p e l l i n g . T h i s circumstanc e
exposes t h e doctrin e o f l e t t e r s h i f t s t o muc h misus e an d
leaves muc h t o t h e commo n sens e an d concep t o f t r u t h o f t h e
individual.
The mai n r u l e her e i s t h a t l e t t e r s pronounce d wit h t h e
same voca l orga n o r belongin g t o t h e sam e c l a s s a r e
mistaken an d exchange d fo r eac h other bu t thes e classe s
a l s o sometime s chang e int o eac h o t h e r an d i n t e r s e c t i n v a r i -
ous ways .
The classificatio n o f l e t t e r s i s a s follow s
i r s t , the y a r e divide d int o vowel s an d consonants .
o els ca n b e f u r t h e r subdivide d i n severa l ways , suc h a s
asi an d deri ed vowels t h e forme r a r e a e o , a l l 62
o t h e r s a r e derived , i and f i r s t fro m e and o , t h e o t h e r s
aa later. r els e int o ard vowels , a aa o an d
so t vowels , e i which l a t t e r usuall y i n s e r t i n
6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

front o f the m whe n g or precede , suc h a s r ed


id rea d jid) , g de read gjyde), d however,
t h i s i s differen t i n differen t languages . inall y the y ma y
be divide d int o losed an d o en vowels . Th e close d vowel s
end a s i s i n a wea k consonant , renderin g th e t r a n s i t i o n t o a
following vowe l eas y an d pleasant i n c o n t r a s t , t h e ope n
vowels en d wit h t h e i r ow n sound , causin g a drawlin g an d
j a r r i n g soun d whe n anothe r vowe l follow s immediately . Th e
closed vowel s a r e i n Danis h i and whic h soun d a s i f the y
ended i n an d which , a s i t were , comprise s a sof t
e.g. at tie s ie e e almost t i j - e , s v i j - e , kuv-e ,
uv-e) t h e r e s t a r e ope n i n Danish , an d mak e h i a t u s e.g .
aaan e eedige and t h e like .
i t ongs a r e composit e sound s consistin g o f a vowe l
and a wea k o r sof t consonan t whic h h a s i t s origi n i n a
vowel, i.e . a r e t h e sam e a s a close d vowel unles s on e
p r e f e r s t o mak e t h e distinctio n t h a t a di t ong i s foun d
whenever t h e consonan t h a s i t s origi n i n a differen t vowe l
from t h e on e t o whic h i t i s added , i n whic h cas e tw o l e t t e r s
a r e i n fac t usuall y w r i t t e n t o e x p r e s s t h e soun d e.g . et
a en e a losed o el wheneve r th e wea k consonan t
h a s com e fro m t h e sam e vowe l a s t h e on e t o whic h i t i s
added, i n whic h cas e i t i s generall y omitte d i n writin g an d
t h e vowe l sai d t o b e long , o r t h e vowel , a s som e prefer , i s
w r i t t e n twice suc h a s id s or iid s s
6 onsonants a r e subdivide d int o tes an d li ids
Mute consonant s f u r t h e r accordin g t o th e voca l orga n wit h
which the y a r e pronounced , o r accordin g t o t h e i r ow n nature ,
into

h a r d sof t spirant s
labial l e t t e r s ) Engl ,
lingual l e t t e r s t d
palatal letter s j) g j)
ET M G I GE ER

ctually severa l mor e s p i r a n t l e t t e r s ma y b e found , viz . on e


each o f t h e sof t an d t h e h a r d kind , bu t s e p a r a t e symbol s
were no t a l w a y s availabl e fo r the m a l l . I n l d ors e an d
in nglo-Saxo n bot h i.e . t an d i.e . d occurred
both sound s a r e s t i l l foun d i n Englis h e.g . t in an d t is
In t h e pronunciatio n o f Germa n a s p i r a n t g or g appear s
t o occu r beside s i.e .
The li id l e t t e r s a r e n r an d i n a wa y s.
In man y language s ye t anothe r s e p a r a t e c l a s s ma y b e adde d
t o t h e s e , t h a t o f t h e s i i l a n t s namel y s hard) o r
soft s Germa n s Slavi c s renc h o r gi R u s s .
soft s ts Slav , Slav , s whic h i s describe d
t h i s wa y i n Germa n s ts an d severa l o t h e r s . inall y
t h e vowel-like , o r vowel-originated , wea k consonants . S o
far onl y tw o suc h hav e bee n assumed , from an d fro m
i whic h l a t t e r h a s no t ye t bee n generall y accepte d i n
Danish. again , i s twofol d a s indicate d abov e unde r t h e
labial l e t t e r s , viz. , h a r d as i n re a et an d sof t as
in a and Engl , i n no as etc . ctuall y t h e yod i s
completely p a r a l l e l t o and accordingl y a l s o bot h h a r d an d
soft 6 har d i s foun d i n i t i a l l y i n th e w o r d s a eg
and o t h e r s , likewis e a t t h e en d o f w o r d s i n t h e ornholm
dialect accordin g t o Skovgaard's account, an d i n Swed. a
and o t h e r s sof t a t t h e en d o f w o r d s , a s en t
e also afte r an d g a s in r and g erne Th e bes t
way t o fee l t h e differenc e i s b y pronouncin g r as har d a s
possible t h i s r e s u l t s i n a quit e differen t soun d fro m t h e
usual on e whic h i s almos t fuse d wit h u t beside s thes e
four I a c t u a l l y thin k t h e r e s t i l l a r e tw o mor e on e fro m
e, t h e o t h e r fro m o . Th e on e fro m e appears i n Icel. ei an d
and a which hav e anothe r soun d tha n ou r e a
now sinc e e a have t h e sam e soun d i n both , t h e
difference mus t b e du e t o t h e adde d consonan t whic h i s no t
really bu t a consonan t fro m e . erhap s t h i s wa s a l s o
found i n at. ae and oe fo r t h e ol d spelling s ai and oi
8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

were change d - a chang e for whic h n o o t h e r reaso n i s


apparent. Th e on e fro m o i s foun d i n Icel. which i s no t
quite o no r simpl y o , becaus e a n a r t i c u l a t i o n i s hear d
d i s t i n c t l y a f t e r o e.g . tr l and t h e like perhap s th e
same i s foun d i n which doe s no t see m t o b e exactl y t h e
same a s ou r a either , althoug h i t come s ver y close .
The mos t importan t an d mos t commo n specia l r u l e s fo r
t h e s h i f t s o f t h e individua l l e t t e r s a r e t h e following

1) Interchange of vowels
a e o a l t e r n a t e , e.g . Icel . resta rast rost inn
Swed. s a el Germ. e el Dan . o l
c o .
a e , ) laga ago gi
Icel. saga s g r 65
a e , ) ann s ag n s
ess l s Icel . ara erd
a o d are t lerare eol.
, eol. , Icel. si r or si r Dan . S ),
sni r or sni r Dan. Sne), and , and
.
e o endo ond s o , o ,
s l gen Icel . er Engl , or Icel. er ld
Engl, orld ole
e i ani s ent s Icel . ind r sedeo
sido Icel. setia sitia leggia liggia s rengia s ringa at.
enit rench int
o Icel. ngr Swed. ng Icel. tr Dan . ro
r lna s s re
oli nox la o ili s

2) Interchange of mute letters


g Icel . el a Dan . lge Icel . a ga Dan . e
egr e a gr n ga ne e
g tra ere Icel . draga e ere Icel. ega
ET M G I GE ER 9

nglo-Saxon so te Dan . s g t e ro te rag de


Very ofte n hard , soft , an d s p i r a n t l e t t e r s o f t h e sam e
c l a s s a l t e r n a t e wit h eac h other , e.g . Icel . so a Dan . so e
a a e and man y o t h e r s .
rm . air Icel . adir r r ol d Icel .
word fo r 'fire') , at. a la and man y o t h e r s .
eol . fo r , for ,
at. ores fro m .
In genera l
abial l e t t e r s a l t e r n a t e w i t h lingua l l e t t e r s is ,
i o , os es and ostis eol. , -
- r er fo r r r s
66 abia l l e t t e r s with p a l a t a l l e t t e r s Icel . o Swed.
gn gagn Dan . a n l s Germ , s len Icel .
s ola Dan . skylle), Gr. and .
ingual l e t t e r s wit h p a l a t a l l e t t e r s Dan . t er Germ .
er is Dor. , o eol. , and
many simila r examples .

) Interchange of liquid letters


r lili a l s I t a l . re ia
r . la le e 'arrow', sagitta ou r lits e i s fro m t h i s ) ,
eregrin s I t a l . ellegrino and t h e like .
n nglo-Saxo n ild Germ . ind at. all s and
ann s Icel. sa na Swed. sa la eol . for ,
from whic h at. l o for .
ne Gr. , eregrin s illegri and severa l
others.
r s and , Engl, as Germ , ar
Moesog. Dan. et ar
These liqui d l e t t e r s a r e exchange d wit h eac h o t h e r an d
with mut e l e t t e r s i n t h e mos t differen t way s e.g . Dor.
, and t h e like , o n whic h se e t h e followin g page . u t j u s t
a s ofte n the y a r e droppe d completely , e.g . Icel . er ld Engl .
orld Germ . elt wit h r omitted , Dan. erden with
50 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

omitted s i m i l a r l y i n Engl . al tal ol s o ld o ld


a t n da n an d man y o t h e r s . a r t i c u l a r l y frequen t i s t h e
omission o f befor e d t howeve r i n t h i s cas e i t ofte n
leaves a t r a c e i n t h e lengthenin g o r chang e o f t h e precedin g
consonant int o a diphthon g wit h e.g . alter r . a tre
old Germ, alt Dutch o d

) Mutual shifts o f vowels and consonants


a en e , dens s -
ent - no en Icel . alla Germ. allen
de ern se te atre a l s o int o in an d i
in o t s at . ginti 6
i e Germ . dienen Dan . t ene Icel. l n
Germ. ne Engl. ne e an d i a r e ofte n t h u s pronounce d i n
English althoug h w r i t t e n a s vowels , e.g . sia na seo s
o id a Germ . it e leo olish le
olish an d Russia n d a an d man y o t h e r s .
consonan t followe d b y e o r i and s t i l l anothe r vowe l
i s ofte n change d s o t h a t e or i is droppe d an d t h e consonan t
doubled oli ali s ,
, il e Germ. ille idia itten edia
etten

5) Mutual shifts o f mute and liquid letters


at. or i a o for )
from , s a n s a ell no en S wed. na n Icel .
na n Dan . a n
d t at. odor oleo sedeo sella gradior
grall editari satis idi s an d ili s
s eiden s ille
ng g tango tetigi read l cho) at.
lingo rango rag en t ragor g ngo
s d rosa o , ideo is s edi s
assa Dor. , Dor. .
ET M G I GE ER 51

6) Transposition of letters
r at. erno eol. at. ir s
re o ser o terti s ard s Icel .
k r o s s Dan. ors nglo-Sax. g rs r s orst r o s t
eor t Engl. rig t an d man y o t h e r s .
s nglo-Sax . is p l u r a l i as la e las e a e
s e a ian Engl. as Dan. ske), eol . for ,
for , at. as ia Gr. , at. is s Gr .
, and t h e like . 68
eol . at. lg s Gr . o , ith. ilnas at.
len s olish d gi Dan . lang ) Russ . dolgi Gr . o ,
ol. slo e Russ . s ln e Dan . Sol) .

) Increment of letters added at the beginning of words


s h o r t vowe l i s ofte n adde d t o t h e beginnin g o f w o r d s
in on e idiom , droppe d i n another suc ha s and
, and , lgeo e ant
- for - ) at. no e and , o at.
ent - at. no en - at. dens
dentis
i s adde d t o o r conversel y droppe d fro m t h e beginnin g
of w o r d s , suc h a s Germ . ing Icel . ringr ie
ithuanian ar a Icel . ar a
s such a s for , for tego s fo r
read ), Germ . le en Dan. sli e
ord Germ. ort rita 'write') nglo Sax . r tan
at. r at. is ideo
Icel . eg Dan . eg Dan . I s s e S wed. sse Dan .
elt Swed. lte Germ. ng Dan . ng Germ . a r Dan .
ar
g later , na s an d gna s nos o v x ,
Dan. lig Germ. glei s nd ges nd
at. a er Icel . ein and ein Dan. et
ld at lde re Germ . elle ellen
This i s t h e reaso n wh y a l l thes e l e t t e r s sometime s
52 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

a l t e r n a t e i n th e beginnin g o f w o r d s , suc h a s Icel . r ngr


r ng at . sinister Icel . instri at. eter s
se s s s er es er s
69
8) Insertion of letters or attachments at the end of words
i s inserte d betwee n vowels , suc h a s o is
o o de s ithuanian die as t s
ith. ta as s s ith . sa as and man y o t h e r s .
likewise e.g . Gr. ith. iel Germ. i s e
ith. s
r likewise at. n r s - n ar
generis ri
i s inserte d a f t e r a consonant , suc h a s sal s sal s
sol o sol t s Icel . i l gen.plur . i l a s ls l a
Germ. a l at. al s
likewis e es ede rench ied ene ien Icel .
i ta Dan . t de Icel . egia Swed. tiga segia Dan . sige
r read brjef ) Dan. re an d man y o t h e r s .
i s inserte d befor e d t such a s at. alter fro m Gr .
, Gr. nglo-Sax. etera ith . sald s from
Dor. for , and man y more .
i s inserte d befor e g e.g . ngo from olde r go
from whic h gi tango fro m tago fro m whic hta and
many o t h e r s se e p . 50 , 1 . 29) .
between tw o vowel s len s inor
ith. s n s s n s ns in Danis h an d Icelandi c
where in additio n h a s bee n dissolve d int o an d man y
others.
after Gr. from olde r similarly
a f t e r o t h e r consonant s , at. s erno for
s ero o r s reo from whic h s re erno and man y simila r
examples.
g i s inserte d betwee n tw o vowel s o r a t t a c h e d a t t h e
end e.g . r or r ges Icel. ogi Dan. e Icel . sl fo r
sla a Germ. s lagen and t h e nou n slag
ET M G I GE ER 5

a r e inserte d a f t e r suc h a s fo r -
fro m , Icel . ti ra Icel . li r Engl . li
Dan. a Icel . la 0
d t a r e inserte d a f t e r o fo r ,
from , tendo Dan . aane Germ . ond r
before d t a s i n ndo fro m whic h di t ndo t t di
s indo s idi an d t h e like .
ll t h e s e l e t t e r s a r e a l s o ofte n foun d t o b e omitte d fro m
w o r d s i n whic h the y originall y occurred , example s o f whic h
have i n p a r t bee n given . u r t h e r , singl e vowel s a r e ver y
frequently droppe d whe n w o r d s a r e contracted , suc h a s
al a gl s ina na ita na ta

ha t h a s bee n give n her e f a r fro m e x h a u s t s t h i s


m a t t e r no r wa s t h e purpos e t o giv e anythin g mor e tha n a
survey o f t h e mos t frequen t an d commo n s h i f t s , fo r whic h I
hope i t wil l b e t o l e r a b l y sufficien t t o t h e a t t e n t i v e an d
impartial r e a d e r . I n o r d e r t o exhibi t t h e interchange s o f
l e t t e r s specifi c t o o t h e r specia l languag e c l a s s e s , e.g . t h e
Slavic o r t h e rienta l languages , on e woul d hav e t o choos e
quite differen t example s an d tak e accoun t o f muc h else , e.g .
t h e interchang e o f s i b i l a n t l e t t e r s an d t h e i r chang e int o
mute l e t t e r s o r vic e versa however , t h i s h a s ver y l i t t l e
bearing o n t h e etymolog y o f t h e ordi c language s an d ca n
accordingly b e d i s r e g a r d e d i n t h i s place .
Second hapter
n Icelandic and the Gothic class of languages

If w e wan t t o kno w w h a t a languag e i s like , knowin g


i t s prope r pronunciatio n i s no t a s inessentia l a s i t migh t
appear. ronunciatio n i s a s i f t h e oute r for m o f a language ,
and althoug h on e ma y b e quit e successfu l i n understandin g
t h e a u t h o r s withou t t h i s knowledge , on e wil l neve r b e abl e
t o ge t t h e feelin g o f t h e i r r e a l s p i r i t . Th e impressio n
remains cold , d i s t a n t , an d almos t outlandish . Importan t a s
i t i s fo r ou r enjoymen t o f t h e a u t h o r s , pronunciatio n i s
completely indispensabl e fo r derivin g t h e w o r d s o f a
language o r findin g ou t t h e i r t r u e origin withou t w e a r e
misled ever y i n s t a n t b y fals e resemblance s whic h deceiv e t h e
eye whe n no t guide d b y t h e ear .
s fa r a s t h i s oute r for m i s concerned , Icelandi c i s a
somewhat broa d an d h a r d language an d ye t i t s pronunciatio n
i s simpl e an d extremel y r e g u l a r . Ever y vowe l occur s i n tw o
varieties, on e a simple , even , an d hig h sound , t h e o t h e r a
low, diphthonga l o r close d sound th e l a t t e r i s mos t
frequently indicate d b y a tic k ove r t h e l e t t e r an d c o n s i s t s i n
a lowerin g o f th e f i r s t an d basi c soun d an d t h e addin g ont o
i t o f a wea k consonan t an d perhap s a l s o - i n
accordance wit h wha t wa s sai d abov e - a n a r t i c u l a t i o n fro m
o and e . S t r i c t l y speaking , then , w e shoul d 2 hav e tw o
diphthongs fro m eac h vowel , on e wit h t h e consonan t fro m
or o , anothe r wit h t h a t fro m i or e . T h i s i s a c t u a l l y t h e
case wit h a, bu t i n t h e o t h e r case s euphon y h a s onl y
allowed t h a t on e i n whic h t h e consonan t wa s o f th e sam e
type a s t h e vowel , i.e . wher e the y coul d joi n closel y int o
one sound , almos t lik e a broa d vowel , rejectin g t h e on e i n
I E DI DT EG T I S S 55

which the y wer e dissimilar , o r b y a smal l chang e makin g i t


into anothe r consistin g o f simila r p a r t s - a l l o f whic h ca n
be see n fro m th e followin g summar y
a
o i
e ei
a read j )
Each o f thes e vowel s an d diphthong s ha s onl y on e singl e
sound, the y a r e neve r confused , althoug h the y ma y chang e
into eac h o t h e r i n severa l way s accordin g t o certai n r u l e s
when w o r d s a r e inflecte d an d derived . Th e notio n t h a t t h e
simple vowel s a r e s h o r t an d t h e broa d vowel s lon g i s
entirely fals e bot h kind s a r e equall y ofte n s h o r t an d
long. E.g . t h e f i r s t i i s lon g i n i inn s h o r t i n gi r
and t h e w o r d s adr dr ta eta a r e o f t h e sam e
length.
owever, i n t h e o l d e s t time s a probably ha d t h e
sound s t i l l hear d i n t h e speec h o f man y orwegians , i.e . i n
between o and e , e.g . i n t h e wor d a r ig otherwis e
i t woul d h a r d l y hav e occurre d t o the m t o us e t h i s wa y o f
representing th e sound . t t h e sam e tim e e , whic h no w
h a s t h e sam e soun d a s ei , probabl y ha d th e soun d o f so
t h a t a corresponded abou t t o Germa n a and e t o Germa n
e T h i s i s a l s o supporte d b y t h e aroes e dialec t i n whic h
e h a s becom e o an d i s ver y carefull y distinguishe d fro m
ei. I.e. , h a s originall y ha d tw o diphthong s lik e a,
one wit h o r t h e consonan t fro m e viz. ey) , t h e o t h e r wit h
viz. a ).
hichever on e w a n t s t o cal l them , close d vowel s o r
diphthongs, a hig h degre e o f balanc e i s see n t o obtai n
between the m an d t h e simpl e vowels , sinc e onl y on e singl e
diphthong, viz . , i s unmatched , a t l e a s t i n t h e s t a t e o f t h e
language i n whic h i t e x i s t s a t presen t an d demonstrabl y h a s
existed fo r man y centuries . l l t h e o t h e r s correspon d
r e g u l a r l y t o eac h o t h e r . simila r accordanc e i s foun d
56 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

between t h e consonants , a h a r d on e invariabl y correspondin g


t o a sof t one , suc h a s
g

d t

True, i s n o longe r use d i n w r i t i n g , havin g bee n replace d


by d i n orwegian , Swedish , an d Danis h i n t h e Middl e ge s
and t h i s eventuall y b y d i n a l l ordi c languages . I ti s
r a t h e r carefull y observe d i n t h e printe d editio n o f i la, and
in everyda y speec h i t i s s t i l l foun d i n Icelandi c an d Danish ,
d occurrin g mos t frequentl y i n th e beginning , i n t h e en d o f
a s y l l a b l e . Th e differenc e i s hear d i n t h e Icel . w o r d s t i
d radr an d d a an d i n Dan. dda and dde n th e
o t h e r hand , Icelandi c h a s n o s ds ts o r othe r
such sound s whic h rende r s o man y o t h e r language s
unpleasantly hissing bu t i t doe s hav e a h a r d and a
s t r o n g puf f o f b r e a t h a t t h e beginnin g o f w o r d s a s i n
aa arta r r ngr l ta noda
s fa r a s liqui d l e t t e r s a r e concerned , Icelandi c doe s
not kno w th e gl gn i.e. l j , nj ) o f t h e Romanc e language s a t
t h e en d o f w o r d s , bu t a ver y simila r 1 soun d ofte n
occurs i n t h e beginnin g an d i s represente d b y placin g i j)
a f t e r th e consonan t or , i f a n e follows, b y accentin g t h a t
l e t t e r , e.g . l di 'he len t out' , rea d ljed i a s i f i t wer e
w r i t t e n gledi i n I t a l i a n o r lledi i n Spanish) s i m i l a r l y li
li ni ta r T h i s soun d i s foun d a f t e r a l l consonant s i n
Icelandic, bu t especiall y a f t e r an d g which a r e completel y
fused, a s i t were , wit h t h i s sof t yod, exactly a s i n Danish .
rom t h i s g j , k j soun d hav e com e t h e I t a l . gi and i i.e.
dsch, t s c h ) . I n Swedish , h a s a ver y simila r soun d t s c h ) ,
except perhap s t h a t i t i s no t quit e s o s t r o n g l y breathed
e.g. r or r t o b e rea d t s c h r o r tj r. In Englis h
both occu r j u s t a s i n I t a l i a n , e.g . ridge fro m Icel . r ggia
I E DI DT EG T I S S 5

Dan. rygge), r t Dan . e n rykke), and man y o t h e r s .


rench and ortug. inale d o no t occu r i n Icelandic .
ut nn an d hav e a specia l sound , bein g pronounce d almos t
like ddn , dd l - whic h a t an y r a t e i s a ver y r a r e soun d i n
t h e o t h e r Europea n language s an d perhap s quit e n a t u r a l onl y
in appish . I n t h i s languag e w e frequentl y fin d a an d a
dn whic h i t woul d undoubtedl y b e fa r mor e practica l t o
write an d nn correspondin g t o Icelandi c o r t h o g r a p h y
e.g. oaa e b e t t e r oaa e 'a thing' , genit . oaa e j u s t a s
orra 'a t r e e ' ora g ella ' a language ' g ela an d t h e like
on laano ' I change' , imperf . on lodno b e t t e r lonno o r
laanno )
e hav e see n t h a t a s f a r a s pronunciatio n i s concerned ,
Icelandic s t r i k e s a middl e cours e betwee n t h e h a r d e s t an d
t h e s o f t e s t languages . s f a r a s inne r s t r u c t u r e i s
concerned, i t likewis e occupie s a positio n i n betwee n t h e mos t
complex an d t h e mos t simpl e languages however ,i ti s
noteworthy t h a t Icelandic , lik e t h e o t h e r ol d Gothi c
languages, h a s t h e mor e comple x syste m i n t h e noun s an d a
r e l a t i v e l y simple r on e i n t h e v e r b s - t h e exac t opposit e o f
what i s t h e cas e i n t h e Souther n languages .
5 oun s f a l l int o t h r e e gender s an d tw o inflectiona l
s y s t e m s , on e simple , t h e o t h e r complex , i n accordanc e wit h
Greek an d atin . Th e simpl e syste m ma y b e compare d t o
t h e f i r s t an d secon d declension s o f thes e languages , t h e
complex syste m correspond s t o t h e t h i r d an d t h e o t h e r d e -
clensions o f atin . ow , sinc e eac h gende r h a s a declensio n
from e i t h e r system , t h e r e shoul d i n fac t b e 6 declension s i n
Icelandic bu t tw o o f these , viz . t h e comple x declensio n o f
masculines an d feminines, have s o man y subdifference s t h a t
each ca n b e f u r t h e r divide d int o two . Thu s th e tota l
number o f declension s i s eight , whic h ma y nex t b e s e t u p
e i t h e r accordin g t o gende r a s Rask does i n h i s Icelandi c
Grammar) o r perhap s s t i l l mor e convenientl y accordin g t o t h e
58 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

two s y s t e m s mentioned , t h e subdivisio n onl y bein g a r r a n g e d


according t o gender . Th e followin g o r d e r woul d r e s u l t

. Th e simpl e syste m
nomin. genit. plur. genit. in Rask
1. euter a a u na 1.
2 . Masculine i a, i a ar a .
. eminine a ur na, a 6.

. The comple x syste m


. euter s a 2.
5. Masc. I r s a r ir ) a .
6. Masc. II r) ar ir a 5.
. emin. I ar i r ar ) a .
8. emin. II ar, ur ur a 8.

orrespondingly, adjective s a l s o hav e t h r e e gender s an d


double typ e o f inflection , on e simple , whe n the y occu r wit h
t h e 6 definit e a r t i c l e , t h e o t h e r complex , whe n the y occu r
without t h e a r t i c l e . Eac h declensio n h a s tw o number s an d
four case s i n each however , som e o f thes e a r e occasionall y
identical. I n additio n noun s ma y ente r int o compositio n wit h
t h e definit e a r t i c l e , whic h i s appende d a t t h e end , i n a l l o f
t h e cases . T h i s a d d s u p t o 1 6 ending s bein g distinguishe d
in t h e fulles t words bu t o f t h e s e t h e eigh t ending s forme d
by suffixin g t h e a r t i c l e , bein g du e merel y t o compounding ,
can scarcel y b e considere d s e p a r a t e inflections .
djectives hav e t h r e e degree s o f compariso n whic h a r e
distinguished b y ending s a s i n Gree k an d atin . Th e f i r s t
degree i s t h e on e j u s t mentioned t h e secon d o r highe r h a s
only one , a t t h a t a ver y simple , chang e o f form wherea s
t h e h i g h e s t h a s a r e g u l a r , doubl e inflectio n exactl y lik e t h a t
of t h e f i r s t .
owhere d o w e fin d an y t r a c e o f a dua l for m excep t
for t h e tw o f i r s t person s o f t h e pronoun s whic h hav e a
I E DI DT EG T I SS 59

separate root-form , a separat e wor d fo r th e dua l number , a s


in Greek .
Verbs hav e tw o forms , a n activ e an d a passive , a s i n
atin an d Greek i n bot h o f thes e fiv e moods , viz . indic. ,
subj., imper. , infin. , an d th e participle s o r th e declar -
ative, conditional , commanding , impersona l mood s an d th e
adjectival forms) . Th e tw o former , i.e . th e declarativ e an d
the conditional , hav e tw o tens e forms , a presen t an d a past
the res t hav e onl y one , viz . a present , o r perhap s rathe r a n
indefinite. umbe r an d person s ar e th e usual . I n short , i n
all o f thi s Icelandi c correspond s exactl y t o Germa n wit h th e
sole exceptio n o f th e passiv e whic h Germa n lacks . Th e sam e
agreement i s foun d i n th e conjugation s o f whic h ther e ar e
two on e whic h i s polysyllabi c 1 i n th e imperfec t an d
has dr o r tr i n th e pass . partic., another whic h i s
monosyllabic i n th e imperfec t an d ha s inn i n th e participle .
The subclassification according t o th e characte r o f th e
imperfect i s als o approximatel y th e sam e i n bot h languages .
In Icelandi c i t ma y b e summarize d a s follow s

irst conjugatio n
lass present past condit. partic.
1 ha s ar adi adi adr
2 ir di ti di ti dr tr
r di ti wit h di ti dr tr
vowel change )
i s monosyll. di ti i di ti i supine t ad
5 ha s r eri eri inn

. Secon d conjugatio n
lass pres. past pl. cond. partic.
1 ha s r vowe l u inn

2- r- a inn
- r- ei i i inn
- r- inn
60 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

5 r a inn
6- r - inn

The 2 . an d . c l a s s e s o f t h e f i r s t conjugatio n wer e no t


distinguished b y Rask, yet i t seem s mos t correc t t o s e p a r a t e
them t h e . g e t s a differen t vowe l i n t h e imperf . fro m t h e
infin. an d p r e s . , but t h i s vowe l i s change d agai n i n t h e
imperf. s u b j . , suc h a s re r ra di re di ra dr o r
ra inn Dan . 'kr ver*. The ending s give n her e a r e t h o s e o f
t h e . person .
The . an d 5 . c l a s s e s o f t h e f i r s t conjugatio n onl y
comprise 8 a fe w v e r b s an d migh t wel l b e calle d i r r e -
g u l a r i f anythin g wer e gaine d t h e r e b y . Th e fourt h i s com -
mon t o a l l Gothi c language s an d t h u s appear s essentia l t o
t h e syste m o f thes e languages , bu t t h e fift h i s completel y
r e g u l a r withou t on e singl e divergenc e betwee n them .
These variou s concept s a r e expresse d b y inflectio n o r
changes i n t h e form s o f t h e w o r d s . Suc h change s tak e plac e
e i t h e r a t t h e en d o r i n t h e middl e o r both , bu t neve r r e a l l y
in t h e beginning no r doe s an y kin d o f incremen t
augmentum) occu r i n t h a t position . Th e ending s a r e s h o r t ,
consisting generall y o f singl e l e t t e r s , whethe r vowel s o r
consonants e.g. , g els a els ar steinn steins steini
stein nl y t h e p r e s . p a r t . o f v e r b s h a s a disyllabi c endin g
andi a s i n els andi ta andi Th e change s takin g plac e
i n t e r n a l l y i n w o r d s consis t fo r t h e mos t p a r t i n interchang e
of vowels . Th e mos t frequen t i s a becomin g and e e.g. ,
gladr fem. gl d land plur . l nd nd Dan . 'en nd' ) gen.
andar plur. end r Sometimes t h e wor d i s a l s o contracted ,
as till 'a kettle ' gen . tils d a t . atli plur . atlar etc.
hen t h e vowe l t o b e change d o n accoun t o f t h e endin g
happens t o b e t h e f i r s t l e t t e r o f a word , th e chang e quit e
accidentally take s plac e initially , no t becaus e i t i s initial
e.g., ada ' a mussel ' gen. d rn gen . arnar d a t . e i eg
a la 'I acquire ' 1 . p e r s . pl . id l and s o f o r t h .
I E DI DT EG T I S S 61

ew w o r d s expressin g r e l a t e d concept s a r e forme d fro m


old one s b y derivatio n an d compounding . Icelandi c ha s a
wealth o f both , noun s an d adjective s i n p a r t i c u l a r bein g
formed b y derivation . Icelandi c h a s fe w diminutive s an d
augmentatives. Derivation take s plac e p a r t l y b y prefixes ,
p a r t l y b y suffixes , p a r t l y b y bot h a t once .
This, briefly , i s t h e c h a r a c t e r o f th e Icelandi c l a n -
guage 9 mor e detaile d informatio n abou t i t mus t b e
g a t h e r e d fro m Icelandi c gramma r itsel f becaus e i n a t r e a t i s e
a s s h o r t a s t h i s i t woul d tak e u s to o f a r awa y fro m ou r
r e a l objective , viz . t h e investigatio n o f t h e origi n o f t h i s
language.
I t h a s bee n observe d abou t a l l t h e r e s t o f n a t u r e t h a t
no objec t i s r a r e l y o r eve r foun d whic h i s completel y uniqu e
and isolate d withou t an y resemblanc e an d connectio n t o
o t h e r s . Th e sam e i s t r u e o f languages . Thu s Icelandi c
e x h i b i t s considerabl e agreemen t wit h a g r e a t numbe r o f
languages an d dialects whe n contemplatin g i t s origi n w e
must accordingl y conside r the m f i r s t o f a l l . Rask appears
t o hav e prove d i n th e prefac e t o h i s Icelandi c gramma r
which i s wh y I hav e fel t justifie d i n takin g i t fo r grante d
throughout i n t h e precedin g - t h a t t h e ol d ors e language ,
which i s no w calle d Icelandi c becaus e i t survive s i n i t s ol d
form onl y o n t h e islan d o f Iceland , wa s formerl y spoke n i n
t h e t h r e e ordi c kingdom s o f Denmark , orway , an d Sweden ,
plus Icelan d wit h th e o t h e r dependencies . t t h e presen t
time, however , w e fin d i t onl y i n Icelan d a s I j u s t said i n
t h e o t h e r countrie s severa l o t h e r mor e recen t language s hav e
developed fro m t h i s on e ol d languag e t h r o u g h t h e change s
brought abou t b y tim e an d circumstances . Th e dialec t
c l o s e s t t o Icelandi c o r l d ors e i s aroese nex t t h a t o f
alarne in som e p a r i s h e s o f t h a t regio n i n Sweden , nex t
edis proper , the n t e or egian diale t an d finall y
anis Incidentally , man y subdialect s spoke n i n t h e
different region s o f Sweden , orway , an d Denmark , althoug h
62 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

not ver y wel l known , hav e preserve d a g r e a t e r s i m i l a r i t y t o


t h e ol d languag e tha n t h e s t a n d a r d vernacular s i n thes e
kingdoms. l l t h e s e languages , springin g fro m a commo n
source, belon g a l s o t o a commo n c l a s s calle d t h e ordi
Scandinavian) c l a s s , j u s t a s t h e people s a r e calle d orse en
Scandinavians). l l o f t h e mor e recen t amon g thes e
languages diffe r fro m Icelandi c b y bein g simple r i n t h e i r
system, an d b y havin g fewe r ending s 80 an d inflection s a s
well a s mor e foreig n w o r d s , take n ove r fro m Germa n an d
rench i n p a r t i c u l a r . I n commo n the y a l l hav e a definit e
a r t i c l e appende d a t t h e en d o f nouns a doubl e for m o f
adjectives, on e definite , t h e o t h e r indefinite tw o
conjugations o f verbs , on e polysyllabi c havin g t h e ending s
de te in t h e p a s t tens e form , t h e o t h e r havin g a change d
vowel bu t n o s e p a r a t e endin g i n t h e sam e tense a n activ e
and a passiv e for m i n e i t h e r conjugation tw o tens e forms ,
viz. presen t an d p a s t , i n t h e indicativ e o r declarativ e mood
and, invariabl y a vowe l a s t h e endin g o f t h e infinitiv e o r
impersonal mood . u r purpos e her e bein g t h e investigatio n
of t h e origi n o f t h e Icelandi c language , the y canno t
o t h e r w i s e hav e muc h importanc e t o us , a s the y a r e a l l mor e
recent an d sprun g fro m t h i s ol d language , whic h wa s
formerly s o widel y spread . The y a r e noteworth y onl y fro m
a lexica l poin t o f view , sinc e som e ol d wor d o r o t h e r ma y
possibly s t i l l stic k i n the m whic h neve r cam e t o Icelan d o r
h a s no t bee n preserve d t h e r e .
ut t h i s kinshi p b y n o mean s come s t o a n en d wit h t h e
languages mentione d here i t extend s fa r beyon d Scandinavi a
proper. o r immediatel y t o t h e Sout h w e encounte r anothe r
l a r g e an d closel y r e l a t e d languag e c l a s s , t h e er ani
which agai n s e p a r a t e s int o tw o g r e a t branches , viz . a on
and er an prope r o r o w an d ig h German) . T o th e
Saxon branc h belon g i n p a r t i c u l a r l d r i s i a n an d moder n
Dutch an d l a t t d e u t s c h , a s wel l a s t h e ol d nglo-Saxo n
language an d moder n English , t h e l a t t e r , howeve r mixed ,
I E DI DT EG T I S S 6

being r i g h t l y include d here , a s w e sa w i n t h e foregoing . T o


81 t h e Germa n branc h belon g t h e ol d Moesogothi c language ,
modern ig h Germa n an d t h e Sout h Germa n d i a l e c t s .
oncerning a l l t h e s e an d s t i l l o t h e r Germani c d i a l e c t s
delung's M i t h r i d a t e s i s p a r t i c u l a r l y w o r t h w h i l e consulting .
I t i s no t eas y t o giv e a genera l descriptio n o f t h e s e
Germanic languages . S t i l l w e ma y not e t h a t the y hav e onl y
one definit e a r t i c l e whic h i s t h e sam e w i t h bot h noun s an d
adjectives an d a l w a y s place d i n front the y hav e n o passiv e
form o f v e r b s excep t b y paraphrasing an d t h e impersona l
mood end s i n in most . Th e Saxo n branc h i s s o f t e r an d
smoother o n accoun t o f a g r e a t e r numbe r o f vowels , an d
closer t o t h e ordi c languages th e Germa n branc h i s
h a r d e r an d r i c h e r i n consonant s an d t h u s mor e lik e t h e
Slavic languages . Th e mor e recen t Germani c languages , lik e
the mor e recen t ordi c ones , a r e simple r i n s t r u c t u r e an d
not a s importan t her e a s t h e older , mor e comple x languages .
mong t h e ol d language s nglo a on come s closes t t o
Icelandic. I n s p i t e o f t h i s i t i s no t t h e mos t importan t fo r
t h i s investigation , a s i t h a s fewe r an d simple r inflection s o f
the w o r d s wheneve r i t diverge s fro m Icelandic , thereb y
revealing itsel f a s a mor e recen t o r a t an y r a t e l e s s
original an d mor e mixe d language , althoug h t h e mos t
distinguished perio d o f i t s l i t e r a t u r e i s olde r tha n t h e
Icelandic. lso , i t h a s ha d ver y l i t t l e influenc e o n t h e l d
orse o r Icelandi c languag e throughou t t h e perio d fro m t h e
Saxon conques t o f Englan d unti l t h e languag e ceased . o
s e t t l e m e n t s wer e dispatched , n o significan t expedition s
undertaken fro m Englan d t o Scandinavia t h e r e v e r s e too k
place a l l t h e time . n t h e o t h e r hand , onl y a ver y smal l
number o f t h e s w a r m s o f orseme n wh o s e t t l e d i n
orthumberland an d o t h e r p a r t s r e t u r n e d 82 t o Scandinavia
accordingly the y coul d no t influenc e t h e languag e a t home ,
although the y g r a d u a l l y bega n t o mi x t h e i r languag e wit h
t h a t o f t h e forme r i n h a b i t a n t s . n d t h o s e wh o wen t
6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

plundering throug h t h e countr y despise d t h e nglo-Saxon s a s


well a s t h e i r language onl y thos e fe w wh o serve d a s
w a r r i o r s unde r th e nglo-Saxon s an d the n r e t u r n e d - Egil
Skallegrimss n and o t h e r s - coul d possibl y brin g bac k som e
nglo-Saxon. u t the y wer e few , an d t h e ors e languag e
was sinc e lon g s o w e l l - o r d e r e d an d r e g u l a r t h a t t h i s coul d
not hav e an y significan t effec t either . nl y a fe w singl e
w o r d s whic h soo n san k bac k int o oblivio n - althoug h
occasionally use d b y som e poe t a s r a r i t i e s - ma y i n fac t
spring fro m t h i s . Th e introductio n o f h r i s t i a n i t y t o
Scandinavia di d brin g i n a fe w nglo-Saxo n w o r d s , bu t t h i s
again coul d no t hav e an y significan t effec t o n t h e languag e
generally, a s i t wa s no t accompanie d b y an y conques t o r
immigration an d singl e individual s ha d t o lear n t h e
language o f t h e countr y an d soo n forgo t t h e i r mothe r tongue .
or, finally , wa s nglo-Saxo n studie d i n Scandinavi a i t
was no t necessar y fo r t h e purpose s o f commerce , t h e Englis h
being s o accustome d t o Icelandic an d i t wa s o f n o g r e a t
use a s a mor e cultivate d language , becaus e t h e l i t e r a t u r e
remained unimportan t o n t h e whole , an d t h e language ,
p r a c t i c a l l y a l l t h r o u g h t h e Middl e ges , f a r mor e confuse d
and mixe d tha n t h e ors e languag e - a l l a s a r e s u l t o f t h e
perpetual w a r s with , a s wel l a s r a i d s an d invasion s by , t h e
orsemen. Th e language , lik e t h e people , w a s eve r passive ,
t h e orseme n eve r active . I t wa s no t unti l t h e conques t o f
England b y in g anut e t h a t i t bega n t o hav e an y noticeabl e
effect i n Denmark 8 bu t fro m t h a t tim e Icelandi c i s a l s o
supposed t o hav e s t a r t e d t o declin e i n t h a t kingdom , s o t h a t
t h i s influenc e i s no t relevan t her e sinc e w e a r e concerne d
with t h e ol d language .
mong t h e o t h e r Germani c dialect s t h e oesogot i i s
f a r an d awa y t h e mos t important , becaus e w h a t i s lef t o f i t
i s almos t fiv e centurie s olde r t h a t t h e o l d e s t w r i t t e n
remains o f Icelandic , an d becaus e i t s syste m i s mor e com -
plex. R e g r e t t a b l y , a l l w e hav e lef t o f i t a r e som e l a r g e
I E DI DT EG T I S S 65

fragments o f t h e fou r Evangelist s an d a fe w o t h e r mino r


pieces i t s usefulnes s fo r lexica l languag e a n a l y s i s i s ver y
much reduce d b y t h i s , nglo-Saxo n bein g fa r b e t t e r fo r t h i s
purpose. u t wha t l i t t l e w e hav e i s sufficien t t o e x t r a c t
p r a c t i c a l l y t h e e n t i r e morpholog y o f t h e languag e fro m i t .
The morpholog y h a s t h e sam e peculiaritie s a s t h e o t h e r
Germanic languages , an d generall y a g r e e s wit h t h a t o f
Icelandic excep t t h a t i t ofte n h a s longe r ending s consistin g
of tw o s y l l a b l e s , t h u s affordin g u s muc h hel p i n findin g
t h e i r origin . Th e languag e i s f a r h a r s h e r tha n Icelandic ,
having mor e consonant s t o t h e w o r d s . therwis e th e
pronunciation, especiall y t h a t o f t h e vowels , correspond s ver y
closely t o t h e Icelandic i t ca n b e inferre d w i t h c e r t a i n t y
by comparin g i t wit h Greek , whic h lfila s i n introducin g
alphabetic writin g t o t h e G o t h s especiall y conforme d t o , a s
well a s wit h Icelandi c t o whic h t h e languag e itsel f i s s o
s t r i k i n g l y similar . onversely , w e ca n dra w reasonabl y
certain conclusion s concernin g t h e mos t difficul t point s i n t h e
old genuin e Gree k pronunciatio n fro m t h e Moesogothi c an d
Icelandic pronunciation e.g. , , which w a s no t pronounce d a s
a t a l l , bu t a s t h e long , lo w Danis h e in lede red
tre se and , which w a s t h e lon g geminate ) Danis h i , a s
in id s rig ile 8 1 ri whereas w a s t h e simpl e i
approaching e a s i n is lille sidde i and t h e like .
mong t h e mor e recen t Germani c language s ig er
an i s mos t importan t grammatically , lattde ts and t
lexically. T h i s i s becaus e ig h Germa n - althoug h develope d
by a n amalgamatio n o f t h e Germa n dialect s prope r an d t h e
Saxon dialect s - h a s preserve d a g r e a t dea l o f t h e ol d
endings an d s y s t e m s , bu t o n t h e o t h e r han d h a s deforme d
t h e w o r d s b y strengthenin g t h e consonant s an d lengthenin g
t h e vowel s o r expandin g the m int o diphthongs . Thu si t
usually make s
66 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

o r g into a si n ei en Icel. ia Dan . ige si


sig i etc .
s s s lagen Icel . sl s ieden s da
s neiden sn da
er from r Icel . o ar orte
from orta Icel . ort
t - t oll Icel . tollr ittern titra set en
setia reit en reita
i long) - ei rei r r is s trei en dr a le
l
a a s for s a s f . s a er from
r st an d severa l o t h e r s .

l a t t d e u t s c h and Dutch , o n t h e o t h e r hand , hav e l o s t mos t


of t h e ol d endings , bu t ofte n preserve d w o r d s i n t h e i r
original simpl e form . Thes e Germani c language s hav e not ,
even l e s s s o tha n nglo-Saxon , ha d an y influentia l connectio n
with Icelandic . lthoug h w a r s betwee n Dane s an d Saxon s
were frequent , i n t h e o l d e s t times , the y r a r e l y i f eve r
extended a s f a r a s Swede n an d orwa y an d d o no t appea r t o
have ha d an y notabl e influenc e o n t h e ol d Danis h language
perhaps t h e l a t t e r r a t h e r , t h e o t h e r wa y around , ha d som e
influence o n l a t t d e u t s c h , l a r g e a r e a s o f orther n German y
having a t time s bee n subjec t t o Denmar k bu t neve r t h e
opposite. ater , however , t h e extensiv e t r a d e an d powe r o f
t h e Germa n anseati c towns , n o doub t a l s o t h e Germa n 85 1
mercenaries, t h e uthera n reformatio n an d t h e refinemen t an d
l i t e r a t u r e whic h wa s underwa y s o muc h e a r l i e r i n Germany ,
- a l l combine d t o e x e r t a ver y appreciabl e an d indelibl e
influence o n t h e mor e recen t Danis h an d Swedish , indee d i t
h a s eve n lef t a coupl e o f t r a c e s i n t h e Icelandi c languag e
proper bu t non e o f t h i s concern s t h e l d ors e languag e
which w e a r e talkin g abou t here .
Might no t t h i s c l a s s o f languages , whic h i s s o closel y
r e l a t e d , bu t l a r g e r an d mor e t o t h e South , b e t h e direc t
I E DI DT EG T I S S 6

source fro m whic h Icelandi c an d wit h i t a l l t h e ordi c


languages hav e flowe d Migh t no t a l s o t h e ordi c people s
have immigrate d fro m German y a t a tim e p r i o r t o a l l ordi c
history I n itself , t h i s doe s no t appea r a l t o g e t h e r
unreasonable however , fro m t h e fac t t h a t a peopl e h a s
come fro m a countr y n o conclusion s ca n eve r b e draw n t o t h e
effect t h a t i t stem s fro m a peopl e residin g t h e r e i n l a t e r
times. Th e elts , too , see m t o hav e wandere d t h r o u g h
Germany bu t fo r a l l t h a t a r e no t Germani c people t h e
J e w s migrate d t o alestin e fro m Egyp t t h r o u g h rabi a bu t
a r e s t i l l neithe r Egyptian s no r r a b s . Similarly , th e
Scandinavians ma y hav e immigrate d fro m German y withou t
being Germans . u t t h e r e i s n o t r a c e o f t h e i r havin g com e
from German y prope r t o Scandinavia o n t h e c o n t r a r y , t h e r e
a r e h i n t s i n h i s t o r y whic h a r e neithe r fe w no r vagu e o f
t h e i r havin g com e fro m r u s s i a an d t h e ester n Russia n
lands o n t h e alti c Sea , an d i n p a r t fro m f u r t h e r in , fro m
t h e region s ort h o f t h e lac k Se a o r Scythi a proper
about whic h mor e i n t h e following . Thu s the y hav e
probably a l w a y s constitute d a r e l a t e d t r i b e , p a r a l l e l t o t h e
Germanic t r i b e , no t sprun g fro m i t . T h i s seem s a l s o
indicated b y t h e i r ol d languag e whic h h a s s o muc h t h a t i s
peculiar t o i t bot h i n vocabular y an d system .
oth o f thes e r e l a t e d languag e c l a s s e s hav e bee n
comprised unde r a commo n name , viz . t e ot i class .
Several German s hav e refuse d t o accep t t h i s nam e an d v i g o r -
ously insiste d t h a t i t 86 b e calle d t h e Germani c c l a s s . I n
so doin g the y see m t o hav e show n mor e consideratio n fo r t h e
honor o f t h e i r ow n countr y t h a t fo r w h a t i s r i g h t an d
proper fo r t h e ter m Germani c i s muc h to o n a r r o w , an d i f
we di d decid e t o expan d i t t o cove r t h a t much , w e woul d
lack nex t a genera l ter m fo r t h e r e a l Germani c t r i b e - a f t e r
a l l , w e canno t ver y wel l cal l nglo-Saxo n an d Englis h
'German'. Th e learne d Germa n reviewe r o f Rask' s
Introduction t o t h e Icelandi c languag e h a s suggeste d t h e
68 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

creation o f a genera l ter m fro m t h e ol d wor d i d or e d


and a n investigation , fo r t h a t reason , o f whe n t h i s nam e
ceased t o b e use d i n Scandinavia . I f so , i t woul d b e b e t t e r
f i r s t t o investigat e i f i t wa s eve r use d i n Scandinavi a o r o f
Scandinavians - whic h I sincerel y doubt . Th e onl y t r a c e s o f
a simila r soun d t h a t I kno w o f i n Scandinavi a i s t h e
Icelandic commo n nou n i d 'a nation , a people' , fro m whic h
i t seem s j u s t a s awkwar d t o mak e a genera l ter m a s i t
would b e t o cal l t h e Semiti c people s oi or th e Itali c
peoples gentes or t h e entians i n Jutlan d i s als o
called i da in Icelandic bu t t h i s coul d no t possibl y b e
what t h e reviewe r h a s i n mind . inall y t h e Icelandi c nam e
for Swede n prope r i s i d but t h i s i s forme d fro m t h e
name o f t h e Swedis h t r i b e ar an d i d which her e mean s
'land', a s i n od i d i.e. 'th e lan d o f t h e Goths' , t h e sam e
a s od ei ar wit h anothe r word . owever , fro m a commo n
word fo r 'land ' n o nam e ca n b e create d fo r t h e s e peoples ,
because ever y peopl e live s i n som e lan d o r o t h e r . hil e a
name fro m i d appears t o b e anythin g bu t prope r an d t h e
word er ani i s muc h to o n a r r o w , sinc e i t comprise s onl y
one hal f - t h e wor d t ian o n t h e o t h e r hand , woul d b e
much to o wide , an d perhap s a l s o to o vague . I f t h i s i s s o ,
there i s 8 probabl y n o o t h e r f i t t i n g nam e tha n Gothi c
t h i s i s t h e onl y nam e whic h w e definitel y fin d bot h i n t h e
South an d i n t h e ort h an d whic h i n bot h place s w a s a
major name . n y confusio n a s f a r a s t h e G o t h s prope r a r e
concerned i s easil y obviate d b y givin g t h e ful l nam e o f eac h
tribe E a s t Goths , es t G o t h s , Moesogoths besides , t h e
adjective ot i i s a c t u a l l y a l l w e nee d fo r a genera l ter m
for t h e Gothi c natio n an d t h e Gothi c languages . Th e wor d
ot i h a s i n fac t lon g sinc e bee n use d i n t h i s fashio n i n
Danish, Swedish , Englis h an d rench w e a l s o t a l k abou t
Gothic l e t t e r s , Gothi c a r c h i t e c t u r e , etc. , a l l i n t h i s sam e
meaning. e can , then , confidentl y kee p t h i s nam e unti l a
more befittin g on e i s invented .
I E DI DT EG T I S S 69

T h i s g r e a t c l a s s o f Gothi c language s appear s t o hav e


one commo n origin , becaus e on e p a r t o f i t canno t ver y wel l
have sprun g fro m t h e other whe n t h a t origi n i s found , s o
i s t h e origi n o f Icelandi c an d vic e versa . onsequently ,
although t h e objec t o f ou r s t u d y h a s bee n considerabl y
widened, t h a t ver y fac t h a s mad e t h e tas k o f findin g o r a t
l e a s t provin g i t s t r u e origi n easier , sinc e i n o r d e r t o achiev e
t h a t w e mus t kno w i t s ful l extensio n an d a l l t h a t i s closel y
connected wit h i t .
Third hapter
n the source of the Gothic languages,
esp. Icelandic

i r s t o f a l l , therefore , a s h o r t c u t t o ou r goa l woul d


be availabl e t o u s i f t h e origi n o f t h e Gothi c c l a s s , o r
specifically o f t h e Germani c mai n branch , ha d perhap s a l -
ready bee n discovered fo r w e hav e see n t h a t Icelandi c mus t
have th e sam e extraction . u t opinion s abou t t h i s a r e
endlessly divided . it h t h e renaissanc e o f h r i s t i a n i t y an d
s c h o l a r s h i p i n Europe , everyon e suddenl y becam e intoxicated ,
a s i t were , wit h a l l t h e splendo r thes e t h i n g s displayed , t o
t h e exten t o f scoffin g a t everythin g else . Th e theologian s
proclaimed ebre w t o b e t h e holies t an d foremos t o f a l l
languages Go d himsel f ha d spoke n i t t o t h e f i r s t huma n
beings, da m an d Ev e ha d use d i t i n aradise accordingly ,
t h e o t h e r languages , a l l datin g bac k t o t h e Towe r o f abel ,
must o f necessit y b e descende d fro m t h a t language . T h i s
many hav e maintaine d i n a l l e a r n e s t eve n unti l quit e recen t
times. T o thos e o f t h i s grou p wh o wante d t o investigat e
t h e f i r s t origi n o f nation s an d languages , a l l t h a t m a t t e r e d
w a s t o trac k somethin g dow n i n t h e book s o f Mose s whic h
somehow coul d b e mad e t o resembl e t h e objec t i n question
and bein g s o convince d thereo f beforehand , i t i s smal l
wonder t h a t the y succeede d wel l i n t h i s . Th e o t h e r s c h o l a r s
took t o a n equall y exaggerate d r e g a r d fo r Gree k an d atin .
89 nythin g no t Jewis h wa s profan e an d odious anythin g
not Gree k o r Roma n wa s b a r b a r i a n an d contemptible . T h i s
group derive d t h e difficul t w o r d s i n t h e ordi c language s
from an y ol d featur e resemblin g the m i n Gree k o r atin
conversely, i t woul d hav e bee n a n effronter y t o deriv e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1

anything i n thes e language s fro m t h e Gothi c o r o t h e r


European languages . erhap s t h i s practic e develope d from ,
or wa s a t l e a s t supporte d by , t h e fac t t h a t t h e socalle d
Romance languages , viz . I t a l i a n , Spanish , ortuguese , rench ,
obviously ha d t o b e derive d fro m atin , no t t h e opposite
upon findin g a fe w s i m i l a r t r a c e s i n t h e o t h e r languages , on e
was easil y le d t o believ e t h a t t h e sam e wa s t r u e t h e r e an d
t o forge t t h a t t h e s i t u a t i o n w a s actuall y quit e different .
The language s o f t h e Southwes t develope d a f t e r t h e f a l l o f
t h e Roma n Empir e i n countrie s dominate d fo r centurie s b y
atin, whil e t h e ort h Europea n language s a r e a s ol d a s t h e
peoples speakin g them , a t l e a s t a s f a r a s t h e i r inne r essenc e
i s concerned fo r n o foreig n tongu e h a s eve r penetrate d int o
Scandinavia, whic h remain s foreve r unconquered . t h e r s hav e
wanted t o deriv e t h e Gothi c language s fro m eltic , o t h e r s
from Slavic , s t i l l o t h e r s fro m ersian , Indic , an d t h e like
but n o on e h a s considere d t h a t t h e e n t i r e gramma r o f a
language mus t b e explaine d fro m t h e sam e sourc e a s i t s
w o r d s , n o on e h a s considere d an y r e a l proo f o f o r r u l e s fo r
h i s procedure . ccordingl y w e hav e n o wa y o f knowin g
which on e o f a l l t h e s e conjectures , whic h a l l hav e somethin g
in favo r o f them , migh t possibl y b e t h e r i g h t one , unles s w e
go t h r o u g h an d examin e the m s e p a r a t e l y . owever , t h i s p r o -
cedure woul d b e bot h tediou s an d uncertain , sinc e quit e
possibly non e o f t h e conjecture s woul d b e foun d t r u e i n
which cas e t h e entir e laboriou s undertakin g woul d hav e bee n
90 i n vain . o r t h i s reaso n I hav e preferre d t o tak e a
different cours e whic h mus t unfailingl y lea d t o t h e source ,
if i t i s anywher e t o b e found , viz . t h a t o f comparin g I c e l a n -
dic wit h eac h o f th e surroundin g language s unti l t h e on e i s
found fro m whic h bot h i t s s y s t e m an d vocabular y ca n b e
conveniently derive d an d whic h i s actuall y older . I t seem s
most n a t u r a l t o begi n wit h t h o s e language s whic h a r e
closest.
2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

1. Greenlandi c

s w e observ e t h e language s o f th e surroundin g


nations t o discove r whethe r t h e l d ors e languag e migh t
have i t s sourc e t h e r e , t h e f i r s t languag e t o presen t itsel f
and t h e on e closes t t o Iceland , whic h no w fo r man y centurie s
h a s bee n t h e mai n s e a t o f t h e former , i s Greenlandic . u t
t h i s language , a s a l s o t h e o t h e r merica n languages , i s o f a
most differen t an d peculia r type . I t s noun s hav e p l u r a l an d
genitive bu t n o f u r t h e r actua l declension thi s bein g
replaced b y a n almos t endles s numbe r o f suffixe s
s u b s t i t u t i n g fo r possessiv e pronouns , prepositions , an d t h e
like, s o t h a t a nou n ma y hav e severa l hundre d differen t
forms. Th e languag e h a s almos t n o s e p a r a t e , orgina l
adjectives instea d i t use s v e r b s an d p a r t i c i p l e s o r
adjectival forms , a s w e migh t perhap s cal l the m a f t e r t h e i r
main c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , bein g form s o f anothe r c l a s s use d a s
adjectives). y v i r t u e o f i t s numerou s moods , tenses ,
negative forms , a s wel l a s suffixe s s u b s t i t u t i n g fo r
conjunctions, complements , an d objec t pronoun s etc. ,
conjugation i s s o comprehenseiv e t h a t t h e variou s form s
admitted b y a Greenlandi c ver b 91 ru n int o thousands .
esides a l l thos e p a r t i c l e s whic h a r e independen t i n o t h e r
languages bu t i n Greenlandic , a s mentioned , consis t i n smal l
affixes a t t a c h e d t o t h e principa l w o r d s , t h e compound s o f
these principa l w o r d s wit h eac h o t h e r a r e s o infinitel y
numerous an d frequen t t h a t w h a t take s on e whol e sentenc e t o
s a y i n o t h e r language s i s ofte n expresse d i n on e singl e lon g
and immensel y comple x wor d i n Greenlandic . exica l
agreement i s equall y small , o r r a t h e r th e differenc e i n t h e
entire vocabular y betwee n t h i s languag e an d t h e Gothi c
equally g r e a t since , furthermore , n o hin t i s foun d i n e a r l y
h i s t o r y t o t h e effec t t h a t Icelan d o r t h e r e s t o f Scandinavi a
were populate d fro m Greenlan d o r merica , bu t a l l
indications g o r a t h e r i n t h e opposit e direction , i t woul d b e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S

completely redundan t t o c a r r y ou t t h i s compariso n i n mor e


detail.

2. elti c

owever, proceedin g t o t h e Southwes t w e find , i n


Europe, anothe r interestin g ol d an d formerl y widel y extende d
people an d languag e c l a s s d i r e c t l y adjacen t t o t h e Gothi c
c l a s s wit h whic h i t h a s i n fac t constantl y ha d a l l kind s o f
connections viz . t h e eltic . Man y hav e assume d t h e
Gothic c l a s s t o b e descende d fro m th e eltic fo r tha t
reason w e s h a l l dwel l o n i t a t som e mor e length . Surel y
t h e elti c peopl e i s on e o f t h e ver y o l d e s t i n Europe i f
they to o hav e com e fro m sia , a s i s generall y assume d abou t
t h e o t h e r s , t h e i r ver y locatio n show s t h a t the y mus t hav e
been t h e f i r s t t o leave , an d i n fac t w e fin d the m i n I t a l y ,
in Gau l an d i n t h e r i t i s h I s l e s a s o f t h e ver y f i r s t r e p o r t s
we hav e abou t thes e countries . I t i s a l s o conceivabl e t h a t
they hav e com e fro m fric a prope r 92 throug h Ital y o r
from Mauretani a t h r o u g h Spai n ahea d o f t h e Iberia n t r i b e
but i n t h e s e events , too , the y mus t hav e immigrate d befor e
t h e daw n o f h i s t o r y .
bout n o o t h e r peopl e o r languag e c l a s s , a p a r t fro m
t h e Greek s an d Romans , h a s s o muc h bee n w r i t t e n , bu t
perhaps abou t non e s o l i t t l e foun d out . bou t t h e Gaul s i n
p a r t i c u l a r , a n endles s amoun t h a s bee n w r i t t e n , i n spit e o f
t h e fac t t h a t the y a r e exactl y t h o s e abou t who m h i s t o r y h a s
left u s t h e ver y l e a s t o f information . f t h e i r languag e
nothing survive s excep t a fe w unidentifiabl e w o r d s preserve d
in Roma n an d Gree k a u t h o r s o f t h e i r religion , achievement s
and antiquities , n o o r fe w t r a c e s excep t a coul e of s c a t t e r e d
h i n t s i n t h e Roman s an d Greeks . n e coul d hav e wishe d
t h a t s c h o l a r s ha d undertake n t o collec t thos e w o r d s , e x t r a c t
and o r d e r a l l thes e b i t s o f informatio n an d then , b y
RIGI T E D RS E G G E

comparison wit h wha t w e kno w abou t o t h e r elti c t r i b e s ,


attempted t o elucidat e an d explai n t h i s information , deferrin g
any though t o f usin g i t t o d r a w ne w conclusion s abou t t h e
kinship an d origi n o f people s an d languages , unti l t h a t t a s k
had bee n completed . u t the y hav e gon e t h e opposit e way ,
intent o n usin g immediatel y t h e fe w b i t s the y h i t upo n
without considerin g whethe r i t f i t t e d i n wit h t h e r e s t .
Explanations wer e engage d i n onl y i n o r d e r t o suppor t suc h
use an d fo r t h a t reaso n wer e invariabl y extremel y onesided .
The ncient s were , a s w e a l l know , ver y negligen t i n
anything concernin g foreig n people s an d languages . nythin g
not Gree k o r Roma n w a s considere d b a r b a r i a n fe w wer e
anxious t o kno w t h e custom s o f t h e s e b a r b a r i a n s , s t i l l fewe r
t o lear n t h e i r languages . Thei r w o r d s o r name s wer e give n
a Gree k o r ati n appearance , t h e i r god s Gree k an d ati n
names. 9 I n addition , t h e nationa l i n t e r e s t amon g t h e
ncients wa s muc h to o occupie d wit h domesti c a f f a i r s an d
with r e l a t i o n s t o t h e g r e a t power s immediatel y aroun d the m
for the m t o hav e devote d an y p a r t i c u l a r a t t e n t i o n t o suc h
difficult investigation s o f farawa y countries . o wonde r
t h e r e f o r e t h a t t h e informatio n the y giv e abou t t h e orther n
and ester n people s i n Europ e i s s o confuse d an d c o n t r a -
dictory, n o wonde r t h a t i s h a s give n r i s e t o a g r e a t v a r i e t y
of s y s t e m s . T h a t informatio n undeniabl y i s ofte n i n nee d o f
correction, an d eve n mor e ofte n o f explanation . owever ,
neither ca n b e provide d withou t a completel y unbiase d
comparison an d investigatio n o f t h e ncient s themselves ,
combined wit h thoroug h knowledg e o f an d dee p insigh t int o
w h a t l i t t l e Time , eve r destructive , h a s s t i l l lef t u s o f thes e
peoples an d eve n t h u s qualified , on e ma y s t i l l ofte n e r r ,
often en d u p b y realizin g one' s ow n ignorance . u t th e
human min d i s a l w a y s r e l u c t a n t t o embar k o n t h e lon g an d
arduous wa y o f investigation t h i s i s a s t r u e i n t h e fiel d
of antiquitie s an d h i s t o r y a s i n t h a t o f philosoph y an d
religion an d ye t t h e r e i s n o other , s h o r t e r wa y t o t r u t h .
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 5

The huma n min d w a n t s t h e r e s u l t immediately , an d havin g


once decide d i t b y guesswork , i t usuall y doe s no t t r y t o
c o r r e c t i t s ow n idea s bu t r a t h e r t o adjus t everythin g t o fi t
with i t s system , i n t h e defens e o f whic h i t summon s u p a l l
its strength . system , onc e invente d b y someone , i s take n
over b y somebod y els e wh o i n t u r n a d d s som e o f h i s own ,
and s o f o r t h gettin g t h u s , unwittingly , entangle d i n a n
inextricable maz e o f delusions , a l w a y s proceedin g t o sav e
w h a t wen t before . n e f i g h t s fo r i t a s on e woul d fo r hono r
and life , an d t h e mos t violen t passion s joi n i n t h e gam e s o
t h a t i t i s ofte n doubtfu l whethe r w e hav e com e close r t o o r
f a r t h e r fro m t r u t h . T h i s i s j u s t abou t w h a t happene d i n
t h e disput e abou t t h e authenticit y o f ssian , a l s o fo r t h e
most p a r t i n t h e 9 investigation s o f t h e elts , t h e i r age ,
t h e i r origin , an d t h e peopl e descende d fro m them .
ello tier an d man y o t h e r s a f t e r him , whos e name s i t
would b e muc h to o extensiv e t o l i s t here , hav e a s s e r t e d t h a t
t h e e l t s wer e th e mos t widel y disperse d peopl e i n a l l o f
estern Europ e an d t h a t a l l o t h e r group s o f peopl e i n t h i s
g r e a t expans e wer e s e t t l e m e n t s fro m t h e elt s o r closel y
r e l a t e d people s an d lik e branche s o f t h e sam e stock . a
o r d' ergne l e premier grenadier ) quit e recentl y c a r r i e d
t h i s clai m t o t h e extreme . Th e newl y e s t a b l i s h e d elti
ade too , voice s opinion s t h a t d o no t t r a i l f a r behin d
his. s i t s publication s r e p r e s e n t t h e mos t recen t wor k o f
importance o n t h i s subject , allo w m e t o cit e severa l passage s
thereof a s samples . I n t h e f i r s t volum e o f t h e T r a n s a c t i o n s
of t h i s cademy , publishe d i n 180 , i t i s sai d abou t t h e
elts i l'on re onte la long e des endan e de to tes les
sagesses de l'orient ne tro e t on as le o entaire le
d elo e ent et l s so ent a ssi la d g n ration des
rin i es et des o inions de le r ages o tes les
lang es sont ri es des d ris de le r lang e originaire
to s les arts sont ost rie rs le rs arts
e ttre e ne seroit il as i ossi le el es s a ans
6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

de ro er e la r sen e des ran s ar i no s est ien


oins le r s ltat d' ne in asion e d reto r d' ne grande
ortion de nos r res dans le r re i re atrie e
t de l' ad ie est don de re rod ire l' istoire des
eltes de re er er le rs on ens de les e a iner de
les dis ter de les e li er d' t dier et de lier
l' t ologie de to tes les lang es de l' ro e why no t a l s o
those o f si a ) l'aide d elto reton i.e. , rmoric),
d allois 95 i.e. , ymric) , et de la lang e rse i.e.,
I r i s h an d Scotch). ais si l' istoire des eltes ne se
tro e oint dans n re eil arti lier ainsi e l'a
di ie se ent re ar r de a r e sa ant disting
dont le no o re onora le ent la liste des r sidens de
l' ad ie elti e ette istoire est rite la tte de
l' istoire de to s les e les ette s ien e ant rie re
druidism) ne donne t elle as en ore des r s ltats
astrono i es a inois et a ndiens n'a t elle as
introd it es grandes o inions de l' nit d' n ie de
l'i ortalit de l' e des eines et des r o enses t res
e les tr s es ri iti s sortis de la tie to te
elti e e les re iers re s e les ra es les
tes les iens les a triens to s e les elti es
see p . 2 o f sai d volume). nd t h e s e claims a r e bein g
advanced wit h considerabl e fervor . Th e Englis h
rchaeological Societ y i n ondo n i s reproach d , no t withou t
b i t t e r n e s s , i n severa l place s e.g. , p . 1 , 15 , an d 2 ) fo r
claiming a monopol y o n t h e g l o r y o f t h e elti c nation . u t
granted i t r e a l l y woul d b e suc h a g r e a t hono r t o b e
connected wit h a peopl e whic h p r a c t i c a l l y everywher e
succumbed t o i t s enemie s an d neve r showe d an y p a r t i c u l a r
excellence i n an y a r e a o f c u l t u r e o r l i t a r a t u r e , a r t o r scienc e
- t h e Englis h undeniabl y ca n la y mor e clai m t o t h i s tha n
t h e renc h insofa r a s a l l t h e survivin g remain s o f t h i s
e n t i r e peopl e excep t fo r a n insignifican t p a r t wh o i n fac t
have com e fro m ritain ) a r e s t i l l preserve d withi n t h e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S

r i t i s h nation . Th e Scandinavian s ge t a smal l r a p also , o n


p. 6 9 o s the member s o f t h e cademy ) ro ere des
o sta les n'en do te as de la art de es nains s irit els
et l gers dont l' dda e la les roides ontr es de son
ol e bout t h e Edda 96 w e lear n o n p . 5 e
l' dda en arti lier a t re eilli ar norro et
t rlesson owever , w e shoul d no t r e a l l y blam e t h e elti c
cademy fo r wha t ma y b e foun d i n i t s Transactions , becaus e
i t s t a t e s o n t h e bac k o f t h e t i t l e pag e t h a t i t h a s n o
intention o f embracin g t h e idea s expresse d b y i t s member s o r
of committin g itsel f t o an y system s o t h a t a l l t h a t ca n b e
said i s t h i s perhap s t h e cadem y ough t no t t o accep t
anything i n i t s publication s excep t w h a t ma y b e w o r t h y o f a
learned societ y i n a culture d nation , eve n i f suc h wer e
submitted b y i t s member s - g r a n t e d a societ y ma y b e
conceived o f a s differen t fro m i t s members . oweve r thi s
may be , i t appear s t h a t somebod y w a s s l i g h t l y p a r t i a l her e
and r a t h e r kep t nationa l p r e s t i g e i n vie w tha n t r u t h fo r
t h e pur e an d nobl e w o r s h i p p e r s o f t h i s goddes s d o no t
usually e x p r e s s t h e i r zea l an d jo y i n suc h language . If , o n
t h e o t h e r hand , thes e claim s hol d goo d - whic h i s a l w a y s
conceivable - , w e woul d no w hav e reache d t h e en d o f ou r
investigation. Th e l d ors e language , t o g e t h e r wit h t h e
languages o f a l l o t h e r Europea n nations , woul d the n hav e t o
be explaine d for m t h e elti c languages . oweve r th e
opposite sid e r e j e c t s a l l t h i s withou t exception .
o on e h a s attacke d t h e claim s b y elloutie r an d h i s
p a r r o t s mor e thoroughl y an d s o b e r l y tha n t h e Englis h
t r a n s l a t o r o f Mallet' s Introductio n l ' h i s t o i r e d e Danne-
marc . is mos t importan t c o u n t e r - a r g u m e n t s a r e t h e s e
The allege d s i m i l a r i t i e s betwee n t h e language s o f t h e Gothi c
and elti c people s consis t m o s t l y i n mer e derivation s o f
names o f town s an d places bu t t h e s e a r e p a r t l y uncertai n
and p a r t l y ma y b e sufficientl y explaine d b y migrations ,
s e t t l e m e n t s o r t h e like , whil e t h e language s themselve s muc h
8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

r a t h e r see m t o b e completel y different . Th e similaritie s i n


way o f life , manner s an d custom s a r e simpl y suc h a s mus t
be foun d i n a l l primitiv e people s 9 a t t h e sam e s t a g e o f
development an d i n abou t t h e sam e l a t i t u d e . n th e othe r
hand i t i s mentione d t h a t aesar , wh o shoul d kno w the m
best, expressl y describe s t h e Gaulis h an d Germani c people s
a s differen t i n h i s s i x t h book . mon g th e Gaul s onl y th e
d r u i d s an d t h e l e a d e r s wer e actuall y free , t h e commo n peopl e
being practicall y slaves i n t h e Germani c peoples , i n
c o n t r a s t , a l l wer e equall y free , whic h i s t r u e a l s o o f t h e
Scandinavians an d seem s t o b e a majo r differenc e i n t h e
social s y s t e m s . Th e religion s o f thes e people s wer e a l s o
very muc h unlik e eac h o t h e r t h e Gaul s ha d d r u i d s , t h e
G o t h s nothin g o f t h e kind . Th e d r u i d s preache d t h e
t r a n s m i g r a t i o n o f souls , t h e Germani c people s assume d a
permanent heave n an d hel l fro m whic h n o r e t u r n wa s
possible. Th e d r u i d s kep t t h e i r doctrin e secre t an d di d no t
permit i t t o b e recorded amon g t h e Scandinavian s t h e
s c a l d s woul d sin g quit e openl y abou t t h e god s an d t h e i r
f e a t s an d f a t e s an d suc h song s a r e s t i l l extant , e.g .
Drymskv da an d S k i r n i r s f r and o t h e r s i n t h e Edda, ascribed
t o S mund). ut i t i s admitte d t h a t t h e Gothi c people s ma y
have take n somethin g o r o t h e r ove r fro m t h e elt s wh o
probably wer e formerl y i n possessio n o f t h e a r e a s int o
which t h e Germani c people s migrated . delung h a s a l s o
embraced t h i s poin t o f vie w i n h i s M i t h r i d a t e s i n whic h h e
advocates i t vigorously , i n h i s fashion , but , a s i t seems ,
without havin g know n t h e abovementione d Englis h preface .
ow, seein g t h a t opinion s abou t t h e elti c grou p o f
languages an d people s a r e s o divided , an d t h e disput e o f
such prim e importanc e t o u s i n t h i s m a t t e r , t h e s a f e s t thin g
t o d o undoubtedl y i s goin g t o t h e sourc e itsel f t o loo k mor e
closely a t thes e language s an d t h e i r relatio n t o Icelandic .
T h i s languag e c l a s s , j u s t lik e t h e Gothic , f a l l s int o tw o
l a r g e divisions . n e prevaile d i n Gau l an d ritain t h e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 9

a lis dialect , however , wa s p r a c t i c a l l y completel y wipe d


out b y t h e Roman s an d h a s merel y lef t som e ver y fain t an d
uncertain t r a c e s i n 98 t h e name s o f place s an d people , plu s
a fe w w o r d s i n ati n an d rench i n fact , thes e l a t t e r ma y
have com e i n fro m rmoric about whic h presently . o r t h i s
reason w e woul d no t kno w anythin g muc h o r certai n abou t
t h i s languag e an d i t s relatio n t o t h e o t h e r s o f th e sam e
c l a s s , ha d w e no t bee n a s s u r e d b y t h e s t a t e m e n t s o f t h e
Roman a u t h o r s t h a t i t wa s abou t t h e sam e a s t h a t o f
ritain, ser o a d lt di ers s say s Tacitu s i n
gricola, ch . 11. Th e ritis branc h w e kno w muc h b e t t e r ,
remains o f i t bein g foun d i n a l l period s r i g h t fro m th e
Roman ag e t o t h i s ver y day . I t seem s mos t reasonable ,
then, t o nam e t h i s divisio n accordingly , i n m y suggestio n t e
ritis or allo ritis Durin g t h e fiv e centurie s o f
Roman reig n t h e riton s adopte d no t onl y Roma n customs ,
s c h o l a r s h i p an d religio n h r i s t i a n i t y ) , bu t a l s o a con -
s i d e r a b l e numbe r o f ati n w o r d s i n t h e i r languag e whic h
s t i l l survive . u t whe n t h e Saxon s an d ngle s conquere d
ritain, t h e ritons , drive n back , fle d p a r t l y int o ale s i n
Icelandic calle d retland a f t e r them) , p a r t l y int o ornwall ,
p a r t l y t o t h e regio n o f Gau l d i r e c t l y opposit e t r a c t u s
armoricus) whic h a f t e r the m w a s l a t e r calle d r i t t a n y . I n
t h i s way , t h e i r languag e wa s a l s o s p l i t int o t h r e e branche s
a) t h e mai n stoc k remaine d i n ale s whic h wa s t h e l a r g e s t
province an d whic h preserve d i t s independenc e an d nationalit y
t h e longest i t i s a l s o s t i l l spoke n mos t purel y t h e r e . Th e
English cal l t h i s dialec t els a f t e r t h e nam e o f t h a t
province, bu t sinc e w e usuall y a s s o c i a t e anothe r concep t wit h
t h i s word , i t seem s bes t t o kee p t h e nam e ri whic h u p
until no w wa s a l s o use d i n Danis h an d whic h agree s wit h
t h e nam e b y whic h t h e peopl e cal l themselve s an d t h e i r
language, viz . 99 reig an d raeg ther s cal l i t
a rian o r a ro ritis o n wha t ground s I d o no t
know. b ) ornis wa s neve r mor e tha n a n insignifican t
80 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

variety o f ymri c an d h a s no w a l t o g e t h e r disappeared . c )


The t h i r d dialect , i n rance , i s usuall y calle d rmoric a f t e r
t h e ol d nam e o f t h a t t r a c t o f land i t i s ver y mixe d an d
appears clos e t o extinction . I t wil l b e see n fro m th e
preceding t h a t i t i s no t a remnan t o f th e ol d Gaulis h
language a t a l l , a s som e renc h hav e claimed , bu t a kin d o f
ymric whic h cam e ove r fro m ritai n t o ranc e i n l a t e r
times, a s th e nam e o f t h a t regio n adequatel y proves .
The o t h e r g r e a t divisio n o f t h e elti c languag e grou p
i s t h e s o - c a l l e d aeli whic h f a l l s int o tw o branche s
according t o th e tw o countrie s i n whic h i t i s s t i l l spoken ,
viz. a ) ris i n Irelan d an d b ) ig land ot i n th e
orthern p a r t s o f Scotland . Thes e tw o onl y see m t o diffe r
quite insignificantly , abou t a s Danis h an d orwegian . I t
appears t o hav e com e t o Scotlan d fro m Irelan d t o g e t h e r wit h
an I r i s h settlement , an d t h e o r d i n a r y nam e give n t o i t b y
t h e English , rse appear s t o b e t h e sam e a s ou r irs
according t o a n ol d pronunciation . T h i s i s t h e languag e t h a t
ssian i s suppose d t o hav e use d i n h i s poetry . Th e Gaeli c
division i s suppose d t o hav e picke d u p a g r e a t dea l o f
Gantabrian fro m a Spanis h colon y whic h cam e t o Irelan d i n
ancient times t h i s , o n t h e on e hand , an d t h e influenc e o f
atin o n t h e r i t i s h branch , o n t h e other , i s generall y
assumed t o hav e cause d t h e s e tw o majo r division s t o diffe r
so muc h fro m eac h o t h e r . inally , t h e r e l a t i v e l y mixe d
an dialec t o n t h e I s l e o f Ma n ca n b e include d unde r t h e
Gaelic c l a s s .
In brief , then , t h e subdivisio n o f t h e entir e presen t
eltic languag e c l a s s i s a s follow s
100
eltic

r i t i s h Gaeli c

ymric, ornish) , rmoric Irish, ighlan d Scotch , Manx .


T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 8 1

In a l l t h e elti c languages , a s i n t h e Gothi c languages ,


atin l e t t e r s o r l e t t e r s base d upo n the m a r e used , bu t t h e
o r t h o g r a p h y o f t h e forme r i s dispose d i n a ver y specia l an d
peculiar way . Especiall y i n t h e Gaeli c languages , an d mos t
of a l l i n I r i s h , i t i s completel y differen t fro m t h e
pronunciation, i t s mai n purpos e bein g t o e x p r e s s t h e origi n
of eac h word , wherea s t h e Gothi c languages , a l b e i t wit h
considerable differences , a l l s t r i v e t o indicat e t h e soun d o f
each wor d a s precisel y a s possible , t h e derivatio n o f t h e
word a l w a y s remainin g a mino r consideration . Sinc e th e
I r i s h endeavo r t o kee p t h e origina l l e t t e r s o f eac h wor d
throughout a l l o f i t s changes , t h e s e l e t t e r s receiv e a l l kind s
of highl y differen t pronunciations , whic h mus t b e indicate d
by t h e additio n o f o t h e r l e t t e r s . The y ofte n becom e
completely silen t b y suc h addition e.g. , i s silen t a f t e r
and afte r s after t o r g after 'd t d
a f t e r n etc. , whic h r e n d e r s readin g i n thes e language s ver y
difficult an d almos t impossibl e fo r foreigners , howeve r
r e g u l a r i t ma y appea r t o t h e natives .
ut o r t h o g r a p h y i s t o a l a r g e exten t du e simpl y t o t h e
ideas o f t h e f i r s t w r i t e r s an d t h e usag e o f t h e l a t e r
w r i t e r s i t i s somethin g e n t i r e l y differen t fro m t h e essenc e
of language . anguage s ma y t h u s conceivabl y b e ver y
closely r e l a t e d althoug h t h e i r o r t h o g r a p h i e s a r e mos t unlik e
each o t h e r . owever , a s f a r a s t h e elti c an d Gothi c
languages a r e concerned , t h e differenc e betwee n t h e i r s y s t e m s
does no t appea r t o b e muc h l e s s . I n ymric , e.g. , whic h i s
t h e languag e fro m whic h p a r t i c u l a r l y man y hav e t r i e d t o
derive t h e Gothi c languages , 101 noun s hav e tw o genders ,
viz. masculin e an d feminin e a s i n ebre w an d som e mor e
recent languages , bu t n o cases . ossessio n i s expresse d
about a s i n ebre w b y placin g t h e wor d i n questio n a t t h e
end, e.g . g r ' a man' , en g r ' a man' s head' . Thos e limb s
which a r e twofol d b y n a t u r e a r e denote d b y a kin d o f dua l
form mad e b y prefixin g de d i.e . duo , du ) and
82 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

c a r r y i n g ou t th e prope r change s i n t h e followin g l e t t e r


which wa s initia l i n t h e word e.g . troed ' a foot' ,
de droed 'th e feet' , lla ' a hand' , d la 'th e hands' .
somewhat simila r dua l for m i s foun d i n t h e ithuania n
pronouns, excep t t h a t t h e numera l i s postfixe d i n those , a s
in d femin . d i i.e . ). The p l u r a l i s forme d
in ymri c i n mor e tha n twent y differen t way s whic h ma y b e
compared t o t h e rabi c collectiv e form s plur . f r a c t i )
p a r t l y b y vowe l change , p a r t l y b y droppin g o r addin g a
s y l l a b l e a t t h e end , p a r t l y b y severa l o f thes e modification s
a t once . E.g. , edd l ' a thought ' edd la daigr ' a tear '
dagra a 'a cave ' e a aint 'a n illness' einia
r 'thick' rei ion t 'a house ' tai d ll 'blind'
deilliaid ra d ' a b r o t h e r ' rod r 'a n ox ' en
arch, d n 'a man' d niadon gr aig ' a woman' g ragedd
elain ' a dead body ' elanedd o r elanedda g l ' a fence'
g l dd ared ' a wall ' ar d dd ' a he-goat '
od ar ' a relative , friend' eraint aen ' a stone '
eini and severa l more . I n c o n t r a s t , Icelandi c a s wel l a s
t h e o t h e r ol d Gothi c language s h a s actua l declension s wit h
cases an d onl y form s t h e p l u r a l i n a fe w certai n ways ,
according t o wha t t h e s e declension s involve . I n i t i a l l yi n
102 w o r d s ymri c h a s a chang e o f consonant s a f t e r t h e
preceding l e t t e r s o r w o r d s whic h i s a l t o g e t h e r alie n t o t h e
Gothic languages , e.g .

t ' a house ' en ' a head '


i d 't o h i s house ' ei en 'hi s head '
alian o 'i t 'ou t o f he r house ' ei en 'he r head '
dodre n n 'th e furnitur e en 'my head '
of m y house '

ords beginnin g wit h c read k everywhere ) s i m i l a r l y


have fou r forms , e.g . ar ' a relative ' ei gar 'hi s relative' , ei
ar 'he r relative ' ng r 'my relative' t h o s e wit h d
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 8

g have t h r e e forms , e.g . g s ' a servant' ei as 'hi s


servant', ng s 'my servant' r a r e change d int o
r similarl y thos e beginnin g wit h a vowel , whic h
prefix a n t o t h i s . Vowe l chang e i s frequen t a l s o i n t h i s
language a , e , o a l l becom e when the y a r e foun d i n
t h e l a s t s y l l a b l e o r i n monosyllables furthermore ,a i s
changed int o e when foun d i n t h e nex t t o l a s t s y l l a b l e . I t
would b e to o complicate d t o describ e t h e r e s t o f t h e syste m
of t h i s languag e i n detail s t i l l I mus t mentio n t h a t t h e
verbs hav e a l l kind s o f ending s i n vowel s an d consonants ,
e.g. oet i 'heat , burn' , no 'join', et 'perish , decline' ,
et ol 'choose' , t allt 'pour out' , an d t h e like , c o n t r a r y t o
t h e n a t u r e o f th e Gothi c language s a s wel l a s mos t o t h e r
languages i n Europe . ymri c h a s derivative s i n g r e a t
number the y a r e forme d b y man y kind s o f prefixe s a s wel l
a s suffixe s an d sho w bu t l i t t l e agreemen t wit h t h e Gothi c
languages however , mos t a r e noun s an d adjectives , a s i n
the latter .
10 ro m wha t h a s bee n sai d her e on e i s easil y p e r -
suaded t h a t t h e r e i s no , o r a t an y r a t e ver y l i t t l e ,
connection betwee n t h e fundamenta l c h a r a c t e r o f t h e s e
languages an d t h a t o f t h e Gothi c languages , an d t h a t , i n an y
case, i t woul d b e quit e unreasonabl e an d inconsisten t wit h
a l l soun d a n a l y s i s o f languag e t o deriv e th e Gothi c languag e
c l a s s fro m t h i s c l a s s , o r vic e versa . Thus , whateve r
s i m i l a r i t y migh t b e foun d i n t h e vocabular y o f ymric , a s
well a s som e fe w correspondence s i n derivatio n an d
inflection, canno t ver y wel l b e ascribe d t o anythin g bu t
mixture an d i n fact , t h e exten t o f t h i s i s s o g r e a t t h a t i t
i s scarcel y exaggerate d t o assum e t h a t abou t on e fourt h o f
t h e languag e i s Gothi c an d anothe r fourt h atin . e ma y
explain t h e w o r d s resemblin g ati n fro m t h e lon g reig n o f
t h e Roman s i n ritain fo r althoug h som e elti c w o r d s ,
s t i l l foun d i n ymric , ma y a l s o hav e com e int o t h e ol d ati n
from th e Gaul s i n I t a l y , thes e appea r t o b e fe w s o t h a t w e
8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

must exercis e extrem e car e i n drawin g conclusion s concernin g


this. irst , w e mus t o f cours e investigate w whethe r t h e
word i n questio n i s no t foun d i n t h e Gree k d i a l e c t s , nex t
whether i t occur s bot h i n t h e Gaeli c an d r i t i s h languages
for i n t h a t cas e t h e p r o b a b i l i t y a t l e a s t i s g r e a t . Th e
Gothic w o r d s ma y p a r t l y hav e com e i n fro m t h e n g l o -
Saxons o r t h e peopl e wh o wer e t o becom e t h e English , p a r t l y
a l s o fro m a n e a r l i e r blendin g o f elti c an d Germani c people s
in elgiu m fro m whic h t h e p r e s e n t - d a y ymr y ma y b e
supposed t o b e descended . Som e w o r d s hav e apparentl y a l s o
passed fro m thes e language s int o t h e Gothi c languages ,
e i t h e r becaus e Gothi c group s o f peopl e hav e followe d elti c
a s p o s s e s s o r s o f man y countries , o r a s f a r a s t h e s i m i -
l a r i t i e s i n Icelandic , nglo-Saxo n an d Englis h a r e concerned )
from t h e perennia l w a r s an d contact s o f t h e orseme n an d
nglo-Saxons wit h t h e s e peoples , whic h exten d throughou t
t h e Middl e ges . 10 Th e resemblance s i n a s m a l l numbe r
of w o r d s t o Greek , ithuania n an d innis h see m t o deriv e
from t r a d i n g s betwee n t h e s e nation s e a r l i e r tha n wha t
h i s t o r y know s of , o r perhap s t o hav e sprea d t o bot h s i d e s
from t h e Gothi c languag e c l a s s . o r a s lon g a s t h e
agreement doe s no t exten d t o t h e inne r s t r u c t u r e o f t h e
languages t o a considerabl e degree , n o fundamenta l kinshi p
can b e assumed . sampl e i s give n her e o f severa l o f thos e
w o r d s fro m whic h conclusion s hav e bee n draw n s o r a s h l y
concerning t h e kinshi p an d origi n o f t h e language s and , fro m
t h a t , t h e people s involved .
i r s t , resemblance s t o ati n

ymric ati n ymri c ati n

a ra r ared aries etis


ariant argent rn r or a
staen stann t rat r a
ar ar a s lenn dd s lendid s
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 8 5

enestr enestra lla dd la s c la ds


ant 'jaw' andere ll r 'book ' li er
r d gratia n d nota
sg is is c piskis) dd od s
d t s o o l s
s si s rdd ordo
an anere da n don
dd ides gl d gl ten
dia l dia ol s dr trid s
d de s trist tristis
s r d s irit s all ali s
ia l g li are

105 s example s o f t h e resemblanc e t o Icelandi c an d t h e


Gothic l a n g u a g e s ma y s e r v e

ymric Gothic

lla ' a hand ' Icel . l i 'the pal m o f t h e


hand', gl i 'a glove '
l st 'a n ear ' - l st 'th e inne r ear th e
a u d i t o r y passage ' ad l sta 't o
listen'
troed ' a foot ' - troda 't o step , p r e s s ' at.
tr des ' a cowfoot' , tr dere 't o
p r e s s , drive , push '
rdd - r tr ' a ram '
a r ' a castrate d - a r ' a he-goat' , at. a er
he-goat'
ar ' a horse ' - oet ar ' a horse ' eri 'mare '
Dan. M r)
noe ' a trough ' - n r 'a hardenin g troug h i n a
smithy)' an d noi 'vasculum '
on- gn ' h o r r o r '
g a d occas . a d - dr 'ode '
86 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

g nt indr at. ent s


g dd - idr
lledr ledr
ra d r dir at . rater
rdd ord
draen Germ. orn Icel . orn
sren orn. steren tern Icel . stiarna
' a he-goat' - o
ara Icel . ra d 'bread'
a Dan. aa e
106 d nd r 'noise' Dan. at d ndre
l d Icel . l r Dan . l
lla r l r
te i egia Dan . tie ta eo
a Dan . en e Icel . og
elin Icel . lna 'a mill '
i Germ. s
e el Dan. el Germ . sel
stang tang Icel . sta ng
s san s Icel . oss
arl 'peasant , churl ' Icel . arl
s r s r
r Germ. an d Dan . r
ne dd Icel . n r Dan . n Germ. ne
ta gn agnar Dan . a s ed

Examples o f resemblance s t o o t h e r language s a r e

ymric

tad 'father '

a 'mother '

ra d 'brother '
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 8

en 'chief , leader ' innis h genit. n an


in ohemian ' a gentleman' , an d
in t h e Saxo n p r a y e r s t o di n
i s foun d il os nd os en
ana i.e. 'hel p u s an d ou r
leader' ith . onas ' g e n t l e -
man'
or 'sea ' Russ. an d ohem . ore olis h
or e Icel . poet . ar at.
are ith . r s innish eri
Germ. eer
r 'an ant ' - ra e innis h rainen
Icel. a r
10 dant ' a tooth ' Gr . for - - ) at.
dens fo r dent s ith . dantis
Icel. t nn gen. tannar Swed.
and Dan. and Germ . a n
ne 'sky' - at. n es Russ . ne o
'the air , sky ' olis h nie o
ni l at. ne la fro m
which i t ma y hav e bee n taken )
der Russ. dere o 'tree '
Icel. tr ngloS . treo
daigr at la r a an d per
haps Icel . t r Germ. re
e e
n at. n s Russ. odin ol. eden
ith. ien as Germ. ein Dan.
en
da d - d o d Gr. Russ. d a
d e ith . d d i Germ , ei
tri Gr . , at. tres tria
Russ. tri ith. tr s Icel .
rr
ed ar edair eol . at. at or
88 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

R SS, et re ith . et ri
Moesog.
at. in e Gr .
Russ. at ' ol . ie
ith. en i Germ, n Icel.
i Moesog.
e Gr . at. se etc .
sait at. e te
t w at . o to r . it
na at . no e Gr .
108 dg de ern read dekem ) G r .
gain gaint iginti Gr . x arch .

ant ent i.e . kentum ) Gr .


-x
il ille

The Gaeli c language s a r e , a s i t seems , s t i l l mor e


removed, althoug h eve n her e s t r i k i n g resemblance s t o t h e
Gothic an d o t h e r language s a r e foun d i n a fe w w o r d s . e
may explai n th e ordi c w o r d s sufficientl y fro m th e lon g
reign o f th e stman s o r orman s i n Ireland , t h e ebrides ,
t h e rkne y I s l a n d s an d aithnes s i n orther n Scotland . s
samples I s h a l l l i s t severa l w o r d s fro m I r i s h a s compare d
with o t h e r language s

Irish

ear 'a man' Icel . er at . ir


a ag 'a monkey ' - a i
ine ' a t r i b e ' - n
lag ' a law ' - l g plur . o f lag
nea ' 'sky' , ymr . ne Gr. Russ. ne o
e ' ngloS. acc . e at. e
t 'you' Icel . at . t
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 8 9

se 'he ' - s ngloS. s e 'it'


sa 'I am ' - e at. s
it a 'be' ngloS . eon Russ . t'
do 'to ' Engl . to l a t t d . t Germ .
ni 'not', na 'not to ' Icel . n at . ne

aon at. n s sea t at . se te


do d oo t o to
tri tres n oi - no e
eat air - at or dei de ern
109 ig in e ad ent
se se ile ille

To su m up , th e e l t i c language s wil l a l w a y s remai n


very i n t e r e s t i n g i n an d fo r themselve s o n accoun t o f t h e i r
age an d peculia r c h a r a c t e r , p a r t l y a l s o becaus e o f t h e
w r i t i n g s i n them , no r a r e the y withou t valu e fo r th e
a n a l y s i s o f w o r d s i n atin , renc h an d t h e Gothi c languages ,
but the y a r e i n n o wa y t o b e considere d a s t h e sourc e o f
any o f these .

. asque .

fter t h e elti c language s w e encounte r anothe r ver y


old an d i n t e r e s t i n g languag e i n t h e isca y an d i n avarr e i n
Spain, spoke n b y th e remainin g descendant s o f t h e e a r l i e s t
i n h a b i t a n t s o f t h i s real m wh o cal l themselve s s ald na
but a r e usuall y calle d as es fro m whic h I hav e name d t h e
language however , i t a l s o goe s b y t h e nam e o f anta rian
and Iberian) . T h i s languag e contain s fe w w o r d s an d s t i l l
fewer for m change s o r inflection s havin g an y s i m i l a r i t y t o
t h e languag e c l a s s whos e origi n w e a r e investigatin g here .
I t s r e l a t i o n s t o t h e elti c grou p o f language s hav e no t ye t
been sufficientl y cleare d u p an d described , bu t agreemen t
90 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

seems ver y scan t her e a l s o . numbe r o f individua l w o r d s


resembling ati n o r ordi c w o r d s a r e o f cours e t o b e
derived fro m th e reig n o f t h e Roman s an d Goth s i n Spain , o r
from t h e Spanis h o f a l a t e r time . s fa r a s i t s syste m i s
concerned, asqu e doe s no t distinguis h an y genders , bu t h a s
a comple x inflectio n o f noun s eve n so t h u s t h e nominativ e
i s divide d int o t h r e e differen t r e l a t i o n s , 110 eac h o f whic h
receives i t s ow n ending a n a r t i c l e , whic h howeve r b e a r s n o
resemblance t o t h e ordi c a r t i c l e , i s a l s o appende d a f t e r
w o r d s . u t verbs , i n p a r t i c u l a r , hav e a n extremel y comple x
inflection, viz . eleve n mood s an d si x tense s i n eac h o f t h e
f i r s t si x moods , a l l o f whic h seem s r a t h e r t o resembl e
Greenlandic tha n an y languag e o f t h e Gothi c c l a s s . owever ,
I hav e no t bee n abl e t o discove r an y notabl e s i m i l a r i t y
between Greenlandi c an d asqu e e i t h e r . I n addition , t h i s
language i s s t i l l ver y inaccessibl e an d f a r fro m bein g a s
well studie d a s i s Greenlandi c t h r o u g h t h e immorta l work s
of Egede and abricius. u r t h e r m o r e , t h e asqu e languag e
h a s s h a r e d t h e fat e o f t h e ol d eltic , havin g bee n describe d
almost entirel y b y ignoran t romantic s who , instea d o f
comparing i t wit h o t h e r s o f a s i m i l a r s t r u c t u r e an d
penetrating int o i t s t r u e s p i r i t an d s t r u c t u r e , elevat e i t
above a l l o t h e r language s - whic h the y deriv e fro m i t - an d
believe i t t o hav e bee n spoke n i n a r a d i s e . onsiderin g t h e
location o f t h e countr y an d t h e extrem e d i s s i m i l a r i t y a s fa r
a s w e ca n g a t h e r ) o f t h e languag e t o a l l t h e o t h e r s i n
Europe, I fin d i t plausibl e t h a t t h i s peopl e cam e fro m fric a
t o Spain . ha t a pity , i n t h i s respect , t h a t nothin g i s
known o f t h e ol d Mauretania n o r Gaetulia n language . u t
actually, fro m wher e t h e asque s hav e com e i s non e o f ou r
concern i n t h i s place i t i s sufficien t t h a t the y a r e
evidently no t t h e a n c e s t o r s o f t h e Gothi c nation s no r r e l a t e d
t o the m t o an y p a r t i c u l a r degree .
hen, havin g t h u s briefl y considere d t h e t h r e e ester n
groups o f language s an d people s withou t findin g t h e sourc e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 9 1

of ou r ancien t language , w e t u r n nex t t o t h e E a s t e r n side ,


we encounte r nothin g bu t i n t e r e s t i n g an d mor e o r l e s s
r e l a t e d element s whic h consequentl y requir e t h a t w e dwel l o n
them longe r an d investigat e the m mor e carefull y an d i n mor e
detail.

111 . innic .

If her e agai n w e s t a r t fro m w h a t i s c l o s e s t t o us , i.e .


from t h e orth , w e f i r s t fin d t h e g r e a t inni c stock .
del ng c a l l s i t di e Tschudische i n h i s M i t h r i d a t e s o n
account o f t h e Russia n chronicle s whic h mentio n a peopl e b y
t h i s nam e i n t h e ort h o f Russi a suppose d t o b e inn s o r
Estonians. owever , creatin g a genera l nam e fro m t h i s
unknown an d b a r b a r i c wor d doe s no t see m nearl y a s prope r
a s keepin g t h e ol d nam e o f inni whic h i s generall y know n
and i n n o wa y limite d t o inlan d fro m whic h t h e adjectiv e
inlandi o r innis i s usuall y formed) , sinc e i t r e c u r s a l s o
in in ar inn a s an d h a s lon g bee n use d a s a genera l
term fo r t h e e n t i r e stock . Th e man y branche s o f t h i s g r e a t
group o f people s foun d i n t h e i n t e r i o r o f Russi a a r e s o l i t t l e
known t h a t I d o no t ventur e t o determin e i t s classificatio n
or t h e r e l a t i o n betwee n i t s individua l branches . I shal l
confine mysel f t o a n enumeratio n o f t h e mos t importan t
among them . Ther e seem s t o b e goo d reaso n t o conside r a )
inlandic, o r innis proper , a s t h e principa l language , sinc e
inland i s , a s i t were , t h e center , an d t h e languag e t h e r e i s
most refine d an d l e a s t mixed . losel y r e l a t e d t o innis h i s
b) stonian whic h i s , however , somewha t simple r i n i t s
forms, i.e . probabl y f a r t h e r fro m t h e r o o t o r mor e mixed .
More d i s t a n t l y r e l a t e d , o n t h e o t h e r hand , i s anothe r majo r
branch, viz . t h e a is whic h f a l l s agai n int o c ) inn
a is i f I ma y cal l i t t h u s , spoke n b y t h e app s i n
inmark, and d ) a landi spoke n b y t h e Swedis h app s i n
92 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

apland. Severa l innis h an d Swedis h s c h o l a r s hav e com -


pletely denie d an y kinshi p betwee n innis h an d appish bu t
a s i t i s obviou s t o an y impartia l observe r t h a t t h i s kinshi p
is eve n close r tha n t h a t betwee n ymri c 112 an d I r i s h , I
s h a l l no t detai n t h e r e a d e r b y provin g i t i n t h i s place
besides, i t wil l becom e f a i r l y apparen t fro m wha t follows .
inn- appish an d aplandi c a r e actuall y on e an d t h e sam e
language fo r t h e peopl e w a s on e an d t h e sam e i n e a r l i e r
times, bein g f i r s t completel y free , the n completel y unde r
orway, an d finall y divide d betwee n orwa y an d Sweden .
T h i s separation , t h e differen t influenc e o f orwegia n o r
Danish o n on e sid e an d o f Swedis h o n t h e other , plu s th e
different exten t o f t r a d e an d contac t wit h inland , an d
finally t h e differenc e i n o r t h o g r a p h y an d o t h e r question s o f
procedure betwee n t h e orwegia n an d Swede s workin g o n
appish, - a l l t h i s h a s s p l i t i t int o tw o language s o f ver y
different appearance , althoug h the y a r e a c t u a l l y a s closel y
r e l a t e d a s Spanis h an d ortuguese . Th e inn- appis h dialec t
seems t o b e pure r an d mor e beautiful t h e aplandic , whic h
again f a l l s int o t h e orther n an d th e Souther n dialect , i n
c o n t r a s t appear s t o b e somewha t mor e mixe d wit h Swedis h
w o r d s , an d perhap s t o hav e bee n l e s s carefull y studied .
T h a t e ) ngarian i s closel y r e l a t e d t o appis h h a s bee n
proved i n p a r t i c u l a r b y t h e ungaria n Sajnovic s wh o spen t
some tim e i n inmark, and sinc e confirme d agai n b y ager
and b y Gyarmath i i n h i s excellen t wor k initas ling ae
ngari ae Ung is enni ae originis etc. , G ttingen 1 99
but t h i s language , again , i s mixe d wit h man y foreig n
elements. eside s these , man y group s o f peopl e i n t h e
i n t e r i o r p a r t s o f Russi a a l s o belon g t o t h i s majo r c l a s s .
Dobrowsky observe s t h a t these , too , fal l int o tw o majo r
branches, on e o f whic h h a s re d hai r an d blu e eye s an d i s
more lik e t h e inn s an d 11 t h e Estonians , viz . er ians
rians st a s ot a s and as th e o t h e r s hav e
black h a i r an d brow n eye s an d a r e mor e lik e t h e apps , viz.
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 9

ere iss ord ines and og les whos e languag e come s


closest t o ungaria n o f a l l , an d undoubtedl y man y mor e
which i t woul d g o to o fa r t o investigat e her e an d hav e n o
purpose j u s t t o enumerate .
innish pronunciatio n i s no t unlik e Icelandi c i n certai n
respects e.g . a n i i s ofte n inserte d befor e a n e a s i n
Icelandic, suc h a s ietari i.e . ' eter ' Icel . t r read
jetur). I n innis h a l s o t h e accen t a l w a y s r e s t s o n t h e
f i r s t s y l l a b l e o f a word .
one o f th e inni c language s distinguis h gender , i n
which the y resembl e Greenlandic bu t otherwis e the y hav e a
comprehensive declension . Thu s innis h h a s t h i r t e e n case s i n
each o f t h e tw o usua l numbers , an d ael i n hi s ra
ati a enni a assume s t h r e e suc h declension s o f noun s
t h e f i r s t on e i n a vowel , t h e secon d p a r i s y l l a b a , t h e t h i r d
imparisyllaba. I t appear s t o m e muc h mor e correct , i n
accordance wit h th e inne r essenc e o f t h e language , t o assum e
two declension s dependin g o n t h e accusative , groupin g i n on e
those takin g a doubl e vowe l i n t h e accusativ e singula r an d a
or i n t h e accusativ e p l u r a l , i n t h e o t h e r thos e takin g ta
or t i n t h e accusative . I f w e wer e t o assum e t h r e e
declensions, thos e takin g da da i n t h e accusativ e singula r
and a i n t h e p l u r a l woul d presumabl y hav e t o c o n s t i t u t e
t h e second , no t - a s i n Vhae l - thos e i n oinen bu t t h i s
a l s o woul d s t i l l b e l e s s c o r r e c t tha n t o assum e two .
In t h e declensio n o f innis h fou r t h i n g s a r e t o b e
noted
1) t h e endings , whic h a r e a l t o g e t h e r differen t fro m
t h e Gothi c languages
2) t h e auxiliar y vowe l connectin g 11 th e endin g t o
a word whic h actuall y seem s t o b e wha t make s t h e dif -
ference betwee n singula r an d p l u r a l , t h e ending s bein g almos t
t h e same , excep t t h a t the y a r e mostl y precede d b y a n i in
t h e p l u r a l , i n th e singula r hav e e i t h e r simpl y t h e vowe l o f
the wor d o r mostl y e
9 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

) th e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c l e t t e r , i.e . t h e l a s t mai n
consonant o f th e wor d itself no t infrequentl y t h i s i s
changed i n t h e cours e o f declensio n renderin g t h e wor d quit e
unrecognizable ye t thes e change s tak e plac e accordin g t o
certain, fixe d r u l e s , e.g . osi ' a year' , gen . oden 'o f a
year' oteni 'o f m y year' irsi ' a son g Dan . Vers)' , i n t h e
gen. irren in t h e acc . irtt T h i s chang e i n t h e
c h a r a c t e r i s t i c l e t t e r doe s no t correspon d t o t h e ymri c
consonant chang e r e f e r r e d t o above , whic h occurre d onl y
initially i n w o r d s accordin g t o t h e c h a r a c t e r o f t h e endin g
of t h e immediatel y precedin g word , wherea s t h i s i s interna l
t o t h e wor d an d depend s o n t h e wor d itsel f an d i t s
r e l a t i o n s i n t h e context . Moreover , t h e actua l change s a r e
quite different fo r i n innis h changes t o t i s droppe d
or become s d i s droppe d o r become s tt becom e
t an d s o f o r t h , e.g . lei 'bread' Icel . lei r Dan . e n
e in t h e gen. lei n 'of bread' , ota ' a hous e Icel . ot
gen. oan o r odan oi a ' a so n Dan . og)' o an and t h e
like
) t h e mai n vowe l o f t h e word , whethe r i t i s on e o f
t h e simpl e vowel s a o on e o f t h e raise d vowel s
it woul d b e mor e c o r r e c t t o w r i t e in accordanc e wit h
Estonian an d wit h t h e tw o o t h e r s i n innis h i t s e l f ) , o r on e
of t h e indifferen t vowel s e , i fo r t h e vowel s o f a l l
s y l l a b l e s o f t h e endin g depen d o n t h a t . Vowe l chang e i s a n
important facto r i n Icelandi c declensio n also , bu t i t i s
entirely differen t fro m t h a t o f innish fo r i n Icelandic , i t
i s t h e vowe l o f t h e wor d whic h i n certai n case s i s change d
in accordanc e wit h t h a t o f t h e ending , wherea s i n innis h i t
i s t h e vowe l o f t h e endin g whic h i n a l l case s i s determine d
by t h a t o f t h e word t h e actua l change s a r e a l s o quit e
different.
ossessive pronoun s a r e expresse d b y suffixe s 115 o r
by t h e genitiv e o f t h e persona l pronouns , o r b y both e.g .
s eid n 'our a t h e r ' is 'father' , eid n i s t h e genitiv e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 9 5

of e 'we ' whic h i s t h e p l u r a l o f in sin n ni e s


'your name ' sin n i s t h e genitiv e o f sin 'you', ni i 'name' ,
s i s th e suffi x fo r 2 . person . Th e inflectio n o f adjective s
i s th e sam e a s t h a t o f nouns t h a t o f pronouns , althoug h
somewhat different , s t i l l a g r e e s wit h i t i n t h e entir e
system.
The inflectio n o f verb s b e a r s somewha t mor e
resemblance t o th e Gothi c language s i t h a s t h e usua l
persons, 2 number s an d 2 tenses , presen t an d p a s t , i n t h e
f i r s t tw o moods , viz . t h e declarativ e an d t h e conditional
besides i t h a s a n imperativ e an d a n impersona l moo d a s wel l
a s adjectiva l form s o r participia) , an d finall y t h e usua l tw o
forms, activ e an d passiv e - whic h l a t t e r , however , doe s no t
distinguish perso n excep t b y mean s o f pronouns . Moreover ,
both o f thes e principa l form s a r e foun d i n t h e negative , bu t
in t h i s cas e neithe r distinguishe s perso n excep t b y mean s o f
a specia l kin d o f negativ e pronoun . Vhae l fixe s t h e numbe r
of conjugation s a t , bu t i f I a m no t muc h mistaken , t h e
only correc t divisio n i s int o 2 on e wit h t h e endin g in i n
t h e p a s t tens e for m an d a i n t h e impersona l mood , t h e
o t h e r wit h sin an d ta The f i r s t o f thes e correspond s t o
Vhael's 1. , 2 . an d . , t h e secon d t o h i s . however , bot h
would hav e t o b e divide d mor e accuratel y int o c l a s s e s .
ctually almos t t h e sam e ending s a r e foun d i n innis h i n
both type s o f inflectio n o f bot h v e r b s an d nouns , an d i f t h e
reasons fo r t h e differen t l e t t e r change s ha d bee n sufficientl y
established, i t migh t no t b e necessar y t o assum e mor e tha n
one typ e o f inflectio n i n e i t h e r wor d c l a s s .
The persona l 116 pronoun s an d t h e ver b endings ,
which a r e r e l a t e d t o them , i s t h a t whic h look s mos t lik e t h e
Gothic languages , fo r whic h reaso n I s h a l l l i s t the m fo r
comparison

innish Icelandi c
in g in t h e acc . ig Gr.
96 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

sin ig -
n se ann ann sig
e r ngloS . e
te t r ge
e et e t i eo

The ver b ending s o f presen t an d p a s t i n t h e indicativ e


are
resent ending s as t ending s
1 n in
t it
- i
plur. 1 e i e
tte itte
at v t) - it,

which b e a r s muc h resemblanc e t o t h e Icelandi c ending s o f t h e


. c l a s s o f t h e f i r s t conjugatio n i n t h e present , an d t o a l l
c l a s s e s o f t h e secon d i n t h e p a s t imperf.) s t i l l g r e a t e r i s
t h e resemblanc e t o t h e ati n ending s i is it i s itis
int Th e innis h ending s o f t h e conditiona l moo d a r e t h e
same t h i s moo d i s distinguishe d fro m t h e declarativ e moo d
by o t h e r change s i n t e r n a l t o th e word . Th e 11
imperative differ s somewha t fro m t h e s e an d t h e Gothi c an d
atin endings , bu t t h e impersona l moo d an d t h e adjectiva l
forms hav e n o s i m i l a r i t y wit h an y o f t h e s e language s
whatsoever.
Estonian i s somewha t simple r i n i t s system . Thu s t h e
vowel o f a n endin g i s no t determine d b y t h a t o f t h e wor d i n
t h i s language , excep t sometime s i n t h e dialec t o f Dorpat .
There i s n o suffixin g o f pronouns , no r an y negativ e persona l
forms, t h e negatio n ei bein g merel y place d nex t t o t h e usua l
personal pronouns . therwis e t h e languag e i s ver y muc h lik e
innish.
The appis h divisio n o f t h i s languag e c l a s s h a s i n t h e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 9

main a simila r system . e t i t i s simple r a s f a r a s


inflections o f noun s i s concerned , t h e case s bein g l e s s
numerous an d mor e comple x a s f a r a s pronoun s an d verb s
a r e concerned , a s e p a r a t e for m bein g foun d fo r t h e dua l
number. Th e negativ e persona l pronoun s a r e a l s o foun d her e
in a l l t h r e e numbers , and , a s i n innish , s e p a r a t e negativ e
pronouns i n t h e imperativ e mood , beside s t h e usua l one s i n
t h e o t h e r moods . inn- appish , whic h h a s t h e mos t comple x
pronoun an d ver b syste m o f a l l know n inni c languages , a l s o
h a s mor e pronomina l suffixe s tha n innish , havin g no t onl y
t h e usua l possessiv e affixe s whic h tak e t h e plac e o f t h e
genitive o r possessiv e pronouns , bu t a l s o a kin d o f dativ e
affix expressin g a d a t i v e - l i k e concept , an d i n fac t fro m a l l
t h r e e person s i n a l l t h r e e numbers . er e too , t h e persona l
pronouns resembl e t h e o t h e r Europea n ones the y ar e a s
follows

inn-- appish aplandic Icelandic


sing. 1. on on eg in gen . in
2. don todn -- in
. son sodn s s -- sin
118
orth South
dual 1. oi oi onno id
2. doi toi todno id
. soi soi sodno

plur. 1. ii ie ier
2. dii ti e ier
. sii si e Germ. sie

inn- appish lack s t h e presen t tens e for m i n th e


conditional moo d o f t h e verbs , an d aplandi c lack s t h i s moo d
entirely otherwis e t h e persona l ending s sho w a fai r amoun t
98 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

of agreemen t wit h o t h e r language s her e too , bein g derive d


from t h e pronoun s enumerate d here . Th e commones t a r e

present p a s t
inn- . apl . inn- . apl . Gree k
sing. 1 . i i -o v
2. i i -
. - - -i - i -
dual 1. - n i e i en -
2. ete et ide iten -
. a an i g a i an -
plur. 1. e i e i e - ,
2. etet et ide ite -
. in -ov .

119 ro m t h i s i t i s a l s o possibl e t o ge t som e ide a o f


t h e mutua l r e l a t i o n s betwee n t h e s e languages . Th e appis h
or i s s u r e l y t h e original , fro m whic h innis h n
corresponds t o t accordin g t o a no t unusua l s h i f t . u r t h e r ,
t h e r e i s a mos t s t r i k i n g agreemen t betwee n t h e aplandi c an d
Greek imperfect s - an d ye t i t i s i n n o wa y direct , bu t i s
most c o r r e c t l y explaine d b y mean s o f t h e etti c languages ,
from whic h s o muc h seem s t o hav e passe d int o t h e innic .
therwise, t h e s i m i l a r i t y wit h t h e Gothi c an d o t h e r Europea n
languages i s no t nearl y a s g r e a t o r extensiv e a s i t appear s
a t f i r s t glance fo r i t c o n s i s t s merel y i n t h e endings , an d
t h e s e hav e com e fro m t h e pronouns , t h u s t h e resemblanc e
a c t u a l l y r e s i d e s i n t h e s e only . Everythin g els e i n t h e v e r b s
- t h e formatio n o f tense s an d t h e passive , etc . - i s
a l t o g e t h e r different , s i m i l a r l y mos t o f t h e o t h e r pronouns ,
indeed eve n t h e for m change s o f t h e s e ver y persona l
pronouns. Th e appis h language s hav e specia l persona l
endings i n t h e passiv e a l s o . l l t h e inni c language s hav e
an excessiv e wealt h o f derive d w o r d s , an d especiall y a g r e a t
number fro m verbs , whic h might , no t improperly , b e com -
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 9 9

pared t o t h e conjugation s o f rabic e.g . innis h on ' I


drink' otan ' I pou r fo r someone ' otelen ' I frequentl y pou r
small amounts ' os entelen ' I ofte n drink ' an d man y o t h e r s
inn- appish ga ' I drink ' gata ' I pour ' gesta ' I
drink a l i t t l e ' gast a ' I inten d t o drink ' agoaada ' I
begin t o drink' , an d t h e like . Thu s w e se e t h a t t h e
grammatical s i m i l a r i t y betwee n t h e Gothi c an d t h e inni c
languages merel y c o n s i s t s i n t h e persona l pronoun s an d t h e
verb ending s sprun g fro m them an d eve n i n t h e s e t h e
resemblance i s no t p a r t i c u l a r l y clos e whe n compare d d i r e c t l y
with t h e Gothi c c l a s s . I20 I n al l othe r part s o f thei r
internal s t r u c t u r e extrem e dissimilarit y prevails
consequently, i t woul d b e j u s t a s unreasonabl e t o deriv e on e
of t h e s e languag e c l a s s e s fro m t h e other , a s whe n som e
derive innis h fro m Gree k an d o t h e r s appis h fro m ebrew .
The entir e s i m i l a r i t y mus t b e ascribe d t o blending , an d
probably no t eve n t o direc t blendin g o f t h e inni c wit h t h e
Gothic group , bu t r a t h e r wit h anothe r group , althoug h
r e l a t e d t o t h e Gothic , viz . i n a l l likelihoo d t h e ettic , abou t
which mor e i n t h e following .
exical agreemen t i s i n abou t t h e sam e s i t u a t i o n a s
grammatical whic h w e j u s t talke d about ) bu t i s undoubtedl y
more direct . Moreover , i t i s perhap s mor e i n t e r e s t i n g , a s i t
informs u s o f t h e origi n o f a g r e a t numbe r o f w o r d s i n bot h
language c l a s s e s . er e I s h a l l confin e mysel f primaril y t o
those case s wher e t h e inni c language s appea r t o contai n t h e
source o f ordi c w o r d s , o r wher e t h a t i s a t l e a s t debatable .
or her e agai n i t i s ofte n difficul t t o s a y definitel y wher e a
word i s actuall y native i t i s no t sufficien t t h a t i t i s
found i n a l l know n inni c languages , fo r eve n s o i t ma y hav e
come for m Germa n int o Estonian , fro m Swedis h int o innis h
and aplandic , an d fro m Danis h o r orwegia n int o inn -
appish. I t seem s t o b e a s a f e r criterio n whe n t h e wor d i n
question i s foun d onl y i n t h e ordi c an d no t a l s o i n t h e
Germanic languages .
100 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

innish ordic
ies a man) Sw. es a coward)
oi a a son ) - o e a boy ) Dan .
en aag Ice
l. s i
i a inn- . i a dreing s i
- ig a ancilla ) Dan .
ige Icel . a
121 la si a child ) puella)
Dan. e n a s i.e . a youn g
si a hand ) i n t h e gen . boyish dandy )
den tt onehanded ) - e te n i.e . t h e
inn- . g etta apl . g t left hand ) e t
hand) ung . aandet
lei bread) inn- . la e Icel. lei r Dan . en e e
apl. la e at. li also i n
Slavic)
re o a fox ) inn- . rie an - re r S wed. r Dan .
apl. re e
irri a cat ) Dan. is issen i n unen
irr ing used a s
is in callin g a
cat
ato a worm ) gen . ado n el ad r Sw . at o r
as Dan . addi e
appears t o b e a d i m i -
nutive o f t h e innis h
tar udder ) - g r Germ . ter
at. er Gr .
esi water ) - essi i.e . Dan . ds e
eri sea) , E s t . err i - poet. ar Germ . eer
apl. r at. are also i n
Slavic)
aaldo wave ) - alda gen. ldo
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 10 1

aa land) acc . aata Dan. e n ad i.e. a dam p


meadow) Engl , ead
eldo inn- . eeldo a field ) Icel. old e a r t h ) Germ .
ung, old e a r t h ) eld
122 lda old Dan . ld
ra ta iron) inn- . ro de ra di bo g iron )
apl. r te
ter a resina ) - tiara gen. ti r Sw .
t ra Dan . re
esi honey) gen. eden - i dr Dan. od Germ.
et als o i n Slavic )
ota house) inn- . g atte I c e l . o t i.e. a hous e i n
apl. te c o n t r a s t t o a farm )
ai a gen. a an inn- . a ge - i lifetime ) at.
apl. ai e time) ae Gr .
nda apl . nde family) - poet . ndr son )
nd daughter , r e l a -
tive)
ar i dolor animi ) inn- . - ar r dee p s o r r o w ) at
ar ad terrible) ar a mourn ) Dan .
ar e an d t h e adjec -
tive ar
ierin r o l l ) ier wheel ) rra Dan . arre
tade dung) - tad
a et dress) - a r Dan . e n a
ol E s t . pl . l l t - l Engl. ale
inn- . ol
sto apl . sta ost r Dan . st
e la prow) - i lr Dan. l Germ.
iel
airo a n oar ) r
ar as a boat ) arch , ar i
oto ot form ) ta to
mould, c a s t )
ieni small) Dan. een
102 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

n Icel. ann n Sw. an on


se - s s ngloS . se seo
12 sa a E s t . se sa a - sa r s sa i Dan. den
sa e als o i n Slavic )
aellan impers. mood Germ. i alle
aeldaa
r in impers. r i Icel. eg ra a
stalk)
nn n impers. nd Icel. eg endi Germ, i
wring) ende
ett inn- . atte at o r ad Sw . att Dan .
at at. t Gr . o n

Remarkable resemblance s t the ancien t language s a r e


e.g.

sie en seed) at. se en Russ. s Germ .


aa e
ai en shepherd) Gr. o
or o or or oi 'orphan ' at. or s
inn- . oaar es ung .
r a
t sia Gr. Icel . t ta
Dan. t g te
anen indef. m. anna at. ono
tan change, exchange ) - t for tad
aad n fall) ado
aadan fell) aedo
liian from lii a exceed- Gr. , an d o t h e r s .
ingly)

ooking a t t h i s , on e wil l notic e t h a t som e o f t h e


innish w o r d s hav e take n o n a pejorativ e o r depreciator y
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 10

meaning i n t h e ors e languages , an d these w o r d s a r e p r e -


sumably t h e one s most c e r t a i n l y o f innis h extraction fo r
t h e caus e was p a r t l y t h a t o t h e r w o r d s wer e a l r e a d y foun d
for t h e same objec t with a plai n an d nobl e meaning , p a r t l y
t h a t t h e inni c people s wer e despise d a s l e s s civilize d and
warlike.
The ol d innis h poetr y a l s o b e a r s som e resemblanc e t o
t h e 12 Icelandic. I t require s tw o rhyming l e t t e r s i n each
s e p a r a t e line and i n additio n a differen t meter in ever y
second o r t h i r d line. T h i s correspond s quit e well t o t h e
Icelandic s i x - l i n e o r n y r d a l a g , i f on e combine s t h e f i r s t an d
second, and agai n the fourt h an d fift h u n e s e.g .i n
o asenna in S mun s Edda

eilir s i r eilar s nior


o ll gin eil g god
ne a s einn s er innar sitr
ragi e io
i.e.
ail yo u ses , hai l yo u synja s
and a l l most hol y gods
except fo r t h e on e wh o s i t s most inwardl y
on t h e bench , t o wi t rage .

s example s o f w o r d s whic h t h e inns have taken ove r


from t h e orsemen , I s h a l l merel y mentio n som e whic h
ar at i o n p . 119 o f h i s book , consider s t o b e innic
r o o t - w o r d s l o s t i n ungarian suc h a s o aga 'pusio ' Icel .
agi 'a minor' egd 'man y uncared-fo r children' , sadna
V e r i t a s ' Icel . sann r te dnar 'servus ' Icel. i n and nari
ti 'hora ' Icel . ti i t ona 'mors ' Icel . d n 'mors' dainn
'mortuus', es r e 'exemplum ' Icel . er i ano 'luna ' Icel.
ni od 'animus ' Icel . dr Dan. od Germ . t llo w
me i n t h i s plac e t o correc t s t i l l anothe r smal l e r r o r i n t h i s
o t h e r w i s e excellent work . In t h e g r e a t e t e r s b u r g d i c t i o -
10 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

nary t h e wor d d Dacice occurs under in t h e


languages compare d se e p . 250), l a t e r g p . 2 0) and
125 finally e p. 285). Gyarmathi explain s t h i s a i e
in the f i r s t place p . 250) by addin g a i a itar nt in
a ia eteri , in s p i t e o f t h e fac t t h a t th e immediatel y
following slandi e e i e etc., a s well a s thes e w o r d s
themselves clearl y indicat e t h a t wha t is intende d i s ani e
t h e moder n Danis h presently in use .
The appis h languages , whic h seemed t o b e s t i l l f u r -
t h e r removed fro m t h e Gothic tha n innish b y virtu e o f
t h e i r mor e comple x system, sho w t h e sam e thing a s f a r a s
pronunciation i s concerned , havin g a l l t h e s i b i l a n t s s
etc. o f t h e Slavi c an d etti c languages , althoug h the y a r e
represented differentl y her e followin g Danis h an d Swedis h
o r t h o g r a p h y - which a c t u a l l y i s mos t unsuite d t o th e
appish languages , Danis h an d Swedis h pronunciatio n bein g so
different from t h e appish. s r e g a r d s individua l w o r d s , o n
t h e o t h e r hand, t h e appish language s a l s o contai n a ver y
considerable number o f s i m i l a r i t i e s t o th e ors e languages ,
such a s

inn- appish Icelandi c

airas messenger) arch. r plur . rir fro m


which e rindi errand)
arne apl . ardne son) arn Dan . an d Swed . arn
Moesog. pv a son )
-t nta g i r l ) g nta ancill a petulans)
orw. nte a g i r l )
g o e companion ) fro m g i a man ) pl . g nar
g o 'with' ) socii ) e
anas servant g i r l ) an slave, slav e g i r l ,
g i r l friend )
sa t a sheep ) apl . sa t sa dr sheep , wether )
apl. s ala sheep ) s ali th e sheep , s h e p -
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 105

herd)
126 git e id an d idl ngr
tied o a wolf ) t a bitch) lik e Icel.
t a 'fox ' Dan . e
g o e palate ) apl. g e g r Germ. a en
arddo apl . ar de th e erdar Shoulders)
p a r t of t h e bod y found
between t h e Shoulders)
sar e woun d wit h scab ) s r a wound ) at s ra to
apl. saires wound)
l onddo apl . l onto l nd s a l ndi stat e o f
nature) mind) Swed. l nne
a a a apl . aa gr ol d Dan . aag
brother in-law)
iergo food ) ergia t a s t e ) i rg nour -
ishment)
g erdos osie r twig ) g erddo gi rd g i r t h ) ngloS . gerd
girth) Engl. ard
isso whey ) isa
d o e judgement ) d i d r eg d i
judge)
sa sa water i n r i v e r s ) si r s r i n t h e gen. si
ar s ar Germ. ee
aerro a wave ) apl . aro ra
r o mist ) r i mist ) r r dark )
r r darkness )
ra de t hunder) reidar r r reidarslag
thunder an d lightning )
tte apl . ete inn. tta danger )
t trouble, peril )
itto goal ) id at ida Dan . e t ed
at ede
12 galddo a well, lda a long , bu t n a r r o w
spring) and dee p swamp , a w a t e r
r u t ) Dan . ilde Th e
106 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

German elle an d el
len see m t o hav e a dif -
ferent e x t r a c t i o n an d
t o correspond t o Dan .
et ld at lde re
d etc. , Icel . ella
o la apl . l l Dan . l erhap s t h e
same thin g happene d t o
t h i s festiva l whe n ors e
mythology was introduced,
a s happene d whe n h r i s t i -
anity w a s introduced
t h e ol d nam e was kept,
but applied i n a ne w way
a t an y r a t e , t h i s seem s
t o m e mor e plausibl e tha n
a l l th e unfounde d conjec -
t u r e s I have see n abou t
t h e derivatio n o f t h i s
word.
n or apl . n orra young ) Dan. et or a small, inno-
cent child , a l a s s )
la tes boring) la ta leidr r leidist
I loathe )
a as warm, hot) a a heat , bake ) Germ.
a en
ar as generous ) apl . r quick , pronus ) rl tr
ar o generous)
l writing) on s iai a document )
la I write )
la ddo a smal l space ) leid a way , direction ) g
la ddi lead ) leidi I lead)
tti pre vent) g tti cease )
128 ala r o a r , bellow ) at elia at a la
illi seduce ) g illi
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 10

laa e leave , permission ) lo le i eg lo a le i


lo eda promise)
e eda doubt ) g ea
al e smithy ) a l a forge , s m i t h ' s fur
nace)
gatti guard , guarding ) eg g ti guard ) g t gi
apl. gatte an d apl . t r guarding , lookin g
gattet t o guard ) g t after)
et g t et t o watch )
ga nne furniture , ten- gagn ordg gn lg gn
sils) n t rgagn Dan. a n
attit t o provoke ) etia i n t h e p a s t atti
or ad fair wind ) or a r Dan . r Icel . ei
sta sail ) riadi el the y ha d
fair wind )
la lo sing ) Dan. l ller
ori da begin , dawn ) org n Dan. an d Germ . or
orris apl . rra gen
alert)
ola bur n i n t r . ) ) oaal l a big fire , blaze)
da bur n t r . ) ) Dan. aal
argo howl, hoot ) apl . argr a wolf ) Swed . arg
arg a wolf ) ung . ar
ar as
aal o howl , hoot ) l r a wolf ) Germ. ol
g eesa mak e sour ) apl . Germ. g s en ferment)
g ste la e leavene d
bread)
da a tarn e vb.) ) apl . g te at te ia ta r G r .
da es tame adj.) ) at . do o
la live) led lifetime) eg el at ala ald r Germ.
apl. ela alt lter at. alo
129 s ng apl . s ngo seeng a quilt , bed)
a and ) apl . a Moesog. i a h and ) Icel .
Dan. an d Sw . a a r e use d
108 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

s i m i l a r l y in r i s i n g af -
firmation.

T h i s will , I hope , suffic e t o give a n idea o f t h e


agreement betwee n t h e vocabularie s o f thes e languages , whic h
seem t o contai n clea r t r a c e s o f mutua l borrowings , bu t ver y
l i t t l e indication o f basi c kinship . Th e situatio n t h u s i s
about t h e same here a s i n t h e cas e o f t h e elti c languages ,
except t h a t t h e l a t t e r hav e had a mor e direc t connectio n
with t h e Germani c languages , t h e innic , however , wit h t h e
ordic. o r ou r f o r e f a t h e r s migrated int o Scandinavi a fro m
t h e South , p a r t l y a c r o s s t h e alti c Sea , p a r t l y t h r o u g h
Germany and Denmark , whic h l a t t e r r o u t e was t h e one take n
by di n an d t h e ses t h e view, namely , t h a t they shoul d
have com e t h r o u g h inlan d an d a c r o s s t h e lan d I s l a n d s int o
Sweden i s c o n t r a r y t o a l l likelihoo d an d t o a l l h i s t o r y .
The ver y e a r l i e s t i n h a b i t a n t s the y found , a l l belonge d t o t h e
innic c l a s s o f peoples , thoug h divide d int o many s m a l l e r
groups mentione d i n t h e o l d e s t h i s t o r i c a l monument s b y t h e
names o f r rsar ssar ergrisar isar r ll tnar
ergar innar a ar ener an d o t h e r s . o r tha t
these, too, belonge d t o t h e inni c people s an d wer e perhap s
t h e one s calle d tnar i n t h e s a g a s i s plai n bot h fro m many
o t h e r f a c t s an d a l s o from t er's an d l stan's journe y
which i s briefl y describe d a t t h e beginnin g o f ing lfre s
nglo-Saxon t r a n s l a t i o n of rosius) , althoug h t h e innis h
scholar r o f e s s o r ort an h a s t r i e d t o prov e t h e opposite
in itter ets ade iens andlingar
Thus an d o t h e r s a r e full y justifie d i n assumin g
two different 1 01 majo r people s i n ancien t Scandinavia
but callin g them oter an d oter an d explainin g t h i s l a t t e r
a s contracte d fro m od oter 'godl y J o t e s ' , i s a n obviou s
e r r o r based on mistaking tnar fo r tar and vice versa ,
and give s r i s e t o a preposterou s misunderstanding . tar
a r e tes t h e i n h a b i t a n t s of tland i.e. tland but t h e
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 109

J u t e s hav e neve r constitute d an y majo r peopl e i n Scandinavi a


and ca n i n n o wa y b e c o n t r a s t e d wit h t h e G o t h s , sinc e the y
belong j u s t a s clearl y t o t h e Gothic group o f people s a s an y
o t h e r branc h o f i t . u t i f oter i s replace d b y tner an d
if by tner i s understoo d a l l t r i b e s o f inni c extraction,
including Dwarf s o r apps whic h seems a r a t h e r awkwar d
thing t o do) , the n i t i s c o r r e c t t h a t these constituted on e
major peopl e i n ancien t Scandinavia . Th e o t h e r ma y well b e
called oter in c o n t r a s t , provided onl y t h i s nam e i s no t
confused wit h t h e i r individua l branche s ter Icel . a tar
read G jtar or , accordin g t o Germa n o r t h o g r a p h y , e tar
in Swede n an d der Icel . tar in Denmark , a s well a s ast
and est ot s i n Souther n Europe bu t no w i t i s easy t o
see t h a t a l l these oter a r e quit e diffdrent from t h e tner
or tter t an d th e nam e i n no wa y contracte d fro m
od tar which, i f i t existed, woul d hav e t o mea n godl
tes ha t h a s brough t about t h i s preposterou s derivatio n
of t h e Gothic name i s t h e Icelandi c wor d od i d or o i d
but t h i s i s , a s a l r e a d y observe d abov e p . 68), t h e same a s
od ei ar and mean s t h e lan d o f t h e G o t h s just a s iod
means t h e land of t h e iar i.e. t h e Swedes ) an d doe s not
contain t h e origi n o f t h e nam e ot a t a l l , whic h i t much
r a t h e r presupposes . ccordingly , i t i s most c o r r e c t t o s a y
t h a t t h e e a r l i e s t i n h a b i t a n t s o f Scandinavi a belonge d t o tw o
major group s the ver y e a r l i e s t wer e o f t h e innic , t h e
o t h e r s o f t h e Gothic group. Th e l a t t e r , usuall y calle d
orsemen, drov e 1 1 t h e inni c people s mor e an d mor e t o
the orth. T h i s doe s not j u s t agree wit h wha t i s likely ,
but a c t u a l l y a l s o with t h e ol d legends o f t h e app s an d
with o t h e r circumstances . I n gstr 's es ri ning er
a ar erne i t i s sai d o n p . 9 o e a s ir l
aintain t at t eir an estors ere or erl in ossession o
all o eden and t at o r an estors a e dri en t e a a
and grad all on ined t e ore and ore Th e same i s
t r u e of t h e orwegia n apps , especiall y those wh o a r e
110 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

s e t t l e d the y wan t t o b e calle d inns an d despise th e


orwegians a s well a s t h e nomadi c apps an d claim t o b e
t h e genuine old i n h a b i t a n t s of a l l o f orway . hy , these
innic people s eve n see m t o hav e inhabite d a l l o f Denmar k i n
t h e e a r l i e s t times a t an y r a t e , ger o r ler i n eesso ,
Icel. lesse i.e. ler' s island), was a J te n an d live d i n
din's time. Sams , Icel . se h a s i t s nam e fro m r
an ol d man' s nam e coming fro m t h e appis h nationa l nam e
a e o r a e i n t h e sam e wa y a s innr ind) from th e
innish, a tr fro m t h e G tish, a i at . Saxo ) fro m th e
Saxon, and o t h e r s . Th e island of een i n t h e 0resun d i s
called edn i n t h e ol d language , whic h nam e seem s t o b e
completely appish fo r dn a s well a s o r befor e
another vowe l a r e frequen t sound s in t h i s language e.g .
they hav e mad e in int o i dne anna Dan . e n ande ) int o
adno ndi Dan. e n onde ) h a s become oaadn e an d a
fiord i s odn i n inn- appis h - perhap s th e island receive d
i t s nam e fro m t h i s ver y word. I t seem s t h a t t h e many
o t h e r non- ordie plac e name s i n Scandinavi a wil l a l s o hav e
t o b e explaine d fro m t h e inni c languages e.g . alstr n
unen), ledra i.e . ejre) , otn i n orway , and t h e like .
The well-know n w a t e r f a l l i n t h e G ta r i v e r called
roll tten ma y a l s o ver y neatl y b e explaine d from t h e old
derisive nam e tr ll 'a t r o l l ' give n 1 2 t o t h e s e peoples, and
app. te ' a w a t e r f a l l ' .
I t i s a fac t o f h i s t o r y ho w t h e app s an d vene s
happened t o b e ouste d fro m t h e entir e orther n p a r t o f
p r e s e n t - d a y Sweden , p a r t l y b y orwegians , p a r t l y b y
Swedes. ut i n t h e cours e of t h i s ousting , especiall y i n th e
e a r l i e s t times , t h e immigratin g Gothic peoples everywher e
mingled wit h t h o s e fe w wh o s t a y e d behind , a s i s see n fro m
t h e fables about e ion erde ade etc., and fro m th e
beginning o f ervararsag a wher e i t i s e x p r e s s l y s t a t e d
a gi rdist i i d sa iand i danna isar eing s r
enna r ann ei en s ir gi t ngad d t r s nar
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 111

i.e. ' Then a g r e a t blendin g o f people s too k place th e Rise s


the inni c peoples ) got themselve s wive s fro m an e
Sweden proper), but o t h e r s marrie d t h e i r d a u g h t e r s t h i t h e r ' .
The same i s a l s o clearly see n i n t h e s t o r y o f aral d
aarfager wh o was married t o a J t n i s h g i r l who m h e love d
so d e a r l y t h a t h e forgo t h i s kingdom an d almos t wen t ont
of h i s min d when sh e died an d also i n other part s o f
orwegian h i s t o r y i n whic h i t i s often sai d abou t someon e
t h a t he wa s hal f jergrise b y descent , o r t h e like . hy ,
many indications of t h i s a r e foun d eve n i n Icelandi c persona l
names r read Savmur ) i s a n ol d persona l name , i n
the i la i t occur s a s a dog' s name, fro m t h e appis h a e
a e ' a aplander , inn- app' . innr i s s t i l l a c u r r e n t nam e
in Iceland , or innr ol inna an d o t h e r s . o tr ar i
likewise. I t i s fro m t h i s ol d an d h i s t o r i c a l l y demonstrabl e
r e l a t i o n betwee n t h e inni c an d Gothic Scandinavian s t h a t w e
should explai n whateve r w o r d s an d verse forms t h e l a t t e r
might hav e take n ove r fro m t h e former , wherea s t h e long
and uninterrupte d reig n o f orwegian s an d Swede s ove r
apps an d inn s account s sufficientl y fo r w h a t h a s bee n
taken ove r i n t h e inni c language s fro m t h e ordic for
t h i s w e nee d no t assume any basi c kinshi p - a n assumptio n
which doe s no t appea r t o b e justifie d b y t h e resemblanc e
examined here . resumabl y 1 a simila r thin g happene d
with t h e e l t s i n Ger many, excep t t h a t w e d o no t kno w
anything h i s t o r i c a l abou t i t , becaus e t h e immigratio n o f t h e
Germanic peoples too k place s o e a r l y .
ut before leavin g t h i s widesprea d grou p o f people , I
must ye t mention a n accordamce which , albei t remote , i s s t i l l
essential an d w o r t h y o f note, seemingl y found betwee n t h e
innic, esp . t h e appish , language s an d t h e Greenlandi c
language. s example s ma y serve

appish w o r d s Greenlandi c word s


apl. att e father ) at ta f a t h e r ) ata grand -
112 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

Moesog. father)
edne mother ) inn- . an na mother) ana grand-
dne mother)
e e father's brother ) a a
inn- . e
no mother's b r o t h e r ) ang
arne son) inn- . arne erne
Moesog. pv
a a o r a e inn- . a i Eskim o a a a
ga shoe ) boot)
onne a n egg ) inn- . nni Eskimo onn
anne innis h na
ung. on
ese summer ) inn- . a rsa Eskimo o asa pre-
gi sse Moesog . sumably t o b e read
ith. sara vuasa o r wasa )
o a r i v e r ) inn- .
o innis h o i
ermian country )
innish aa n na
apl. e e o r e day,
sun) innis h a
1 dna or enn e
a dog) inn- . dna e
ni nes a cape ) ni l
a beak ) innis h no a n a cape) .

In othe r words , Greenlandic change s e or t oa an d o r


to an d a d d s a t t h e en d o f w o r d s . Resemblanc e i s also
found i n s t r u c t u r e bot h l a n g u a g e s lac k t h e a r t i c l e , b o t h
have a n endles s numbe r o f suffixes, and i n p a r t i c u l a r a ver y
i n t r i c a t e an d comple x inflectio n o f v e r b s , whic h amon g o t h e r
t h i n g s a l s o have a specia l negativ e principa l p a r t . I n both ,
an d t a r e f r e q u e n t e n d i n g s , in G r e e n l a n d i c p a r t i c u l a r l y i n
the dual o r r a t h e r a al fo r i t i s a l s o use d of t h r e e ,
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 11

four) an d th e p l u r a l , bu t i n inn- appish , whos e noun s hav e


no dual, a l l end i n in t h e p l u r a l , an d i n innis h i n t
I t i s n a t u r a l t o assume, therefore , t h a t on e single
major grou p of peopl e inhabite d a l l o f orthern si a i n t h e
e a r l i e s t time s an d thenc e expande d int o meric a t o on e side ,
into Europ e t o th e o t h e r , bu t t h a t t h e same thin g happened
t o t h e s e people i n meric a a s i n Europ e they wer e chase d
off t o t h e extreme corner b y t h e rud e an d warlik e
i n h a b i t a n t s . I n Greenland , t h e completel y isolate d conditio n
in whic h the y hav e bee n livin g fo r a g r e a t many centuries
h a s probabl y eventually made the m forge t t h e i r e x t r a c t i o n
and give n t h e i r languag e i t s ver y special, comple x syste m
and c h a r a c t e r . lso agreeing wit h t h i s i s t h e resemblanc e
observed betwee n apps , bjondir s or Samoyeds , a s the y a r e
incorrectly called t h i s i s suppose d t o b e a Russia n wor d
meaning cannibals , whic h t h e bjondir s a r e not), styak s an d
o t h e r 1 5 peoples. u r t h e r t h e fac t t h a t t h e ungarian s
the Magyars ) wh o a r e s o d o s e l y r e l a t e d t o t h e apps a r e
said t o have t h e i r origi n n o r t h of hina. l l t h i s ma y help
us explain t h e s i m i l a r i t y of app s an d Greenlanders i n
r e g a r d t o appearance , build , lac k o f scholarship , an d peacefu l
way o f lif e withou t an y civi l i n s t i t u t i o n s o r an y c o n s t i -
tution. Some ha ve considere d t h i s peculiarit y t o b e common
t o a l l pola r peopl e an d a consequenc e of t h e orthern
location of these countries but i f we conside r t h a t t h e
Icelanders liv e j u s t a s n o r t h e r l y , why , i n p a r t mor e
n o r t h e r l y tha n most Greenlanders, and eve n s o a r e almos t
t h e i r direc t opposite s i n body an d mind , bein g t a l l o f
s t a t u r e an d quit e differen t i n facia l features , i n way s o f lif e
and thinkin g - we a r e not likel y t o ascrib e t o t h e orther n
l a t i t u d e s w h a t evidentl y r e s i d e s i n t h e n a t u r e o f t h a t entir e
group o f people . Thus , t h e resemblanc e betwee n appis h an d
Greenlandic whic h w e hav e notice d her e seem s not without
i n t e r e s t t o t h e h i s t o r y o f t h e huma n race, fo r whos e benefi t
i t migh t deserv e a mor e detaile d exposition . T h i s is ,
11 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

however, neithe r eas y t o c a r r y out, no r doe s i t concer n t h e


topic her e before us i t would afford sufficien t m a t e r i a l fo r
a s e p a r a t e investigation concerning t h e origi n o f t h e Green -
landic o r o f t h e appis h language .

5. Slavic.

one o f t h e inni c t r i b e s a r e a t present independent,


nor hav e the y bee n s o fo r a lon g time , excep t i n a way t h e
ungarians b y fa r th e largest par t o f thi s clas s o f
peoples bein g no w under Russian domination. Directly
following t h e innic , therefore , w e reac h anothe r majo r
group calle d t h e Slavi c w i t h a genera l name, t o whic h belon g
Slavonians, Russians , ossacks, oles , ohemians , ends, an d
o t h e r s . oncernin g t h e subdivisions 1 6 and singl e t r i b e s
of t h i s c l a s s o f peoples , referenc e ma y b e ha d t o delung's
Mithridates I s h a l l confine myself her e t o w h a t r e a l l y
concerns m y topi c an d s h a l l begi n b y giving a s h o r t
summary o f t h e inner s t r u c t u r e of t h e s e languages, base d
p a r t i c u l a r l y o n Russia n a s t h e principal language an d t h e on e
b e s t known . Slavonia n i s t h e o l d e s t , but i t i s l i t t l e known
olish i s somewhat more comple x and perhap s l e s s mixe d
t h a n Russian , but in r e t u r n h a s rendere d t h e w o r d s quit e
unrecognizable, e i t h e r b y a b a r b a r o u s l y h a r s h pronunciatio n
or orthography e.g .a h r i s t i a n i s calle d in olish
r es ianin but in Russian rist anin
ut before I procee d t o describ e t h e s e language s o r t o
compare them wit h t h e Gothic languages, i t i s necessar y t o
explain t h e l e t t e r s and t h e i r meaning . Th e Russian s hav e a
special alphabet, borrowed mostl y fro m t h e Greek , but wit h
many changes in t h e shape s o f l e t t e r s an d t h e addition o f
new symbols i n o r d e r t h a t i t ma y b e more practica l t o
w r i t e an d read , a s well a s compar e with o t h e r languages , I
have taken t h e l i b e r t y o f s u b s t i t u t i n g ati n l e t t e r s fo r
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 115

them, i n t h e mai n accordin g t o t h e o r t h o g r a p h y adopted i n


t h e o t h e r Slavic languages, so t h a t t h e Russia n alphabe t i s
represented her e a s follow s a, g d e i s read j e
initially, sometime s j o medially) , i.e . soft sch), , i.e.
s o f t s , rench z), i j) , , n o r ,s t
as in German) , as t s ) , a s tsch) , s a s sch), s as
schtsch), J e r r a symbo l whic h merely indicate s t h a t t h e
vowel o f t h e l a s t s y l l a b l e i s s h o r t ) i s omitte d here , Jer
which indicate s t h e lengt h o f a vowe l o r a wea k j ) i s
marked here wit h a n apostrophe' , e a s j e wit h a wea k yod) ,
a s e) , almost a s ju), a almos t a s ja), x , s t
which i s read a s f) . 1 I t will be seen t h a t a s f a r
a s prononciatio n i s concerned, man y h a r s h an d hissin g sound s
a r e found , j u s t a s i n appish .
The a r t i c l e i s lackin g her e also, a s i n t h e inni c
languages an d i n atin . ut t h e Slavic noun s have t h r e e
genders, tw o number s an d seve n case s i n eac h o f these, viz.
nominative, genitive, dative , accusative, vocative, instrumenta l
and locative however , Russia n lacks t h e vocative. n
i n t e r e s t i n g featur e o f t h i s inflectio n i s t h a t t h e accusativ e
in bot h numbers o f masculine w o r d s an d i n t h e p l u r a l o f
feminine w o r d s i s identica l wit h t h e nominativ e whe n an
inanimate object , but with t h e genitiv e whe n a livin g an d
personal object i s denote d b y t h e word in neute r w o r d s
t h e nominative , vocative , an d accusativ e a r e invariabl y
identical a s in atin an d Greek . I t appear s mos t c o r r e c t t o
fix t h e numbe r o f declension s a t six f i r s t , noun s a r e
divided accordin g t o t h e t h r e e genders , o f whic h neute r i s
t h e simples t an d mos t r e g u l a r an d t h e on e mos t s i m i l a r t o
masculine bu t next eac h gende r again f a l l s into tw o
declensions i f w e fai l t o s e p a r a t e t h e two, Slavi c nou n
inflection become s extremel y complicated , and w e ge t abou t
a s man y divergent w o r d s a s r e g u l a r ones. If w e a r r a n g e
t h e s e six declensions accordin g t o gender , in t h e sam e wa y
a s Rask h a s a r r a n g e d t h e Icelandi c declensions , the y a r e a s
116 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

follows in Russia n

. eute r w o r d s
1. nom. end s in o, e, gen . in -a, plur . -a , gen . -
2. - - - - e, gen . -i a , plur . -a , gen .

1 8 . Masculine w o r d s
. nom. h a s - , gen. a plur . i gen . o
.- - - ' , - j , gen. a plur . - i , gen . -ej

G. eminin e w o r d s
5. nom. h a s a a gen . i plur . i gen . -
6. - - -' , gen. - i , plur . -i, gen . e

ut i f w e a r r a n g e them accordin g t o mutua l


s i m i l a r i t i e s , whic h seen s mos t practica l o n accoun t o f t h e
agreement wit h t h e adjectives , j u s t a s I hav e a r r a n g e d t h e
Icelandic dectension s her e see abov e p . 58), t h e subdivision
i s a s follow s

. i r s t system
1. euter nom. in o e a gen . a plur . -a,
gen.- , e.g. delo ' work', l i
le osla n a r alo
do s o
2. Mascul. -- - , gen. a plur . i
gen. o e.g . stol ' table', in
. emin. -- a a gen . - i plur . i
gen. - , e.g. i ' room', od
r la

. Second system
. euter nom. in - i e , gen . -i'a , plur . -i a , gen . - j , e.g .
r o d n e 'birth' , ran e
1 9 5 . Mascul. - - - ' , - j , gen . a plur . - i , gen .
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 11

ej, e.g. gv o d' ' a nail' , ar '


6. emin. -- -' , gen. - i , plur. - i , gen. - e j ,
e.g. los ad ' ' horse', dro '.

The l a t t e r i s undoubtedl y t h e mor e correc t way ,


however I a l s o wanted t o mentio n th e former , becaus e i t ma y
perhaps b e easie r t o find one's wa y aroun d t h e ol d g r a m m a r s
according t o i t . I n t h e f i r s t syste m t h e vocative h a s a
special endin g in olish , bu t usuall y not i n t h e second . I n
t h e f i r s t , t h e genitiv e p l u r a l e i t h e r h a s n o ending, bein g
formed b y dropping t h e l a s t vowel, o r i t end s i n o i n
t h e secon d system i t invariably h a s - a t t h e end , a p a r t
from som e exceptions. I n t h e f i r s t t h e simpl e vowel s a r e
found i n t h e endings , i n t h e secon d a l w a y s a , u Th e f i r s t
corresponds t o th e f i r s t tw o declension s i n Gree k an d atin ,
t h e secon d t o t h e t h i r d .
djectives d e p a r t r a t h e r significantl y from t h e
inflections o f nouns bu t the y a r e of a twofol d kind ,
corresponding t o t h e tw o s y s t e m s o r principal type s o f
nouns. ha t t h i s mean s i s t h a t som e correspon d t o t h e
f i r s t , o t h e r s t o t h e second , a s i n Gree k an d atin , wher e
some adjective s en d i n o v o s a o t h e r s i n e nc, u
u , es is etc. not a s in t h e ordi c and Germani c
languages, i n whic h adjective s correspon d t o t h e f i r s t system
when the y occu r i n t h e definit e an d t o t h e secon d whe n the y
occur in t h e indefinite , eac h of the m t h u s havin g a doubl e
declension such could not very well occur i n t h e Slavic
languages o r i n atin , i n whic h n o a r t i c l e i s found . I n t h e
p l u r a l a l l gender s a r e alik e i n Russian , excep t t h a t t h e
accusative masculin e an d feminine i s lik e th e genitive, 1 0
sometimes a s i n t h e cas e o f nouns i n olis h th e nominativ e
i s a l s o s t i l l somewhat differen t from t h e o t h e r genders .
Degrees a r e t h e usua l , but the y a r e expressed p a r t l y b y
prefixes, p a r t l y b y paraphrasin g an d p a r t l y b y endings .
The pronoun s d o not hav e an y specia l peculiaritie s
118 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

except fo r t h e personal ones . The numeral s a r e a l l


declined.
Verbs hav e no passive for m i n t h e Slavic language s an y
more tha n in th e Germanic in Russian t h e conditiona l moo d
i s a l s o lacking , however i t i s found in olish . Tenses a r e
t h e resent and in many w o r d s t o asts p r t e r i t a ) , but no
s e p a r a t e future the o t h e r s a r e expressed by p a r a p h r a s i n g .
The future i s indicate d e i t h e r b y a n olde r for m o f t h e
present, abou t a s i n Gree k , o r by prefixin g a
preposition t o t h e curren t present form , o r finally b y mean s
of t h e auxiliar y word , a s in t h e Gothi c languages. Th e
p r e t e r i t e s o f th e Slavi c language s hav e a ver y special
c h a r a c t e r reminiscen t o f adjective s in t h a t they distinguis h
a l l t h r e e gender s i n a l l person s o f t h e singular, and i n
olish a l s o the masculine from t h e tw o o t h e r gender s i n t h e
plural. T h i s gende r distinctio n i s denote d b y a n auxiliar y
vowel onnecting t h e endin g t o t h e word , an d eve n s o eac h
person h a s i t s own usua l endin g completel y r e g u l a r l y i n
olish, wherea s i n Russia n t h e persona l ending s a r e droppe d
in these tense forms , s o t h a t gende r onl y i s indicate d i n t h e
word itself , an d perso n b y a pronou n i n front i n th e
p l u r a l , however , wher e adjective s d o no t distinguis h gender ,
these p r e t e r i t e form s d o no t either , makin g a l l gender s
identical a s well a s a l l persons , whic h mus t b e distinguishe d
by t h e pronou n a s i n t h e singular. Th e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c l e t t e r
by whic h these peculiar p r e t e r i t e form s a r e mad e i s i . ut
where tw o 1 1 p r e t e r i t e s a r e found , on e o f the m most
frequently come s fro m t h e kin d o f future which i s mad e b y
preposition, o r consistent ly fro m anothe r presen t for m tha n
t h e curren t one , j u s t a s t h e a o r i s t , o r indefinite tense, i n
Greek almos t invariabl y come s fro m t h e future a s
u ) o r a non-curren t presen t a s o o which ,
a s i s well known, i s actually a n ol d imperfec t bu t i s use d
t o tak e t h e place of t h e a o r i s t ) . par t fro m t h i s , a kin d o f
derived w o r d s lackin g t h e presen t tens e for m a r e foun d i n
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 119

Russian, whic h hav e t r a d i t i o n a l l y bee n classe d wit h som e


o t h e r r e l a t e d word a s tens e forms thereof. Thu s many mor e
tenses tha n t h e above-mentione d wer e arrive d a t , bu t t h e
Russian verb inflection a l s o made extremely complicated ,
r e s u l t i n g i n a fa r g r e a t e r numbe r o f i r r e g u l a r an d defective
w o r d s tha n r e g u l a r and complet e ones , o f whic h i t was
almost impossible t o round u p a singl e on e t o s e t u p a s a
paradigm a n i r r a t i o n a l approach havin g much in commo n
with t h e ol d on e used i n Greek . Thes e Russian forms a r e ,
in p a r t i c u l a r , a kind o f iterati e or when t h e actio n i s
performed se eral ti es a sing lati e or whe n i t i s
performed a single ti e only , an d finall y a er e ti e or
which, however , i s expressed by a prepositio n an d h a s n o
p a r t i c u l a r appearanc e o f bein g a tens e form o f another word
e.g. ran ' I scold', imperf . ran l 'scolde , fut. ran
perf. ran l d ga 'move' , d gal 'move , d gi al
'moved severa l times' , d n ' I s h a l l mov e once' , d n l ' I
have move d once' is ' I write' , is l 'wrote' , na is ' I
s h a l l w r i t e completely , finish w r i t i n g ' , na is l ' I hav e
finished writing' . I t i s easil y see n t h a t onl y t h e f i r s t tw o
a r e r e a l tenses, t h e o t h e r s being derivations i r r e l e v a n t t o
t h e wor d itself . Th e s y s t e m i n presen t an d future i s lik e
t h a t o f t h e Gothic and ati n an d Gree k 1 2 languages .
The infinitive ends in t throughou t i n Russian . onjuga -
tions a r e two , on e o f t h e s o - c a l l e d pure verbs, t h e o t h e r o f
t h e impure verbs, whic h howeve r agree i n t h e main . It i s
t r u e t h a t da o i h a s assumed t h r e e i n h i s fine olis h
grammar fo r Germans but t h e f i r s t an d t h e t h i r d onl y
seem t o b e different s u b c l a s s e s , of whic h severa l a r e a l s o
found i n t h e second which shoul d r a t h e r b e t r e a t e d f i r s t ) .
These inflection s a r e expresse d b y ending s whic h a r e
sometimes accompanie d b y a vowe l chang e i n t h e wor d an d b y
contraction or expansion , but nothing correspondin g t o t h e
peculiar innis h consonan t strengthenin g an d chang e of t h e
vowel o f t h e endin g accordin g t o t h a t o f t h e word . or is
120 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

any kind o f suffixing foun d i n t h e Slavi c languages , or


anything correspondin g t o t h e numerou s derivative formations
from verbs althoug h the y a r e a l l ric h i n derivations, bu t
especially fro m noun s havin g many diminutives an d
augmentatives from those .
I t will be see n t h a t t h i s e n t i r e s t r u c t u r e correspond s
r a t h e r accuratel y t o t h e syste m o f t h e Gothic, especially t h e
Germanic, languages t h e wa y the y a r e expressed , o r t h e
individual ending s an d forms , also have a strikin g
resemblance t o t h e Gothic - which , however , become s eviden t
especially b y mean s o f t h e etti c languages fo r t h i s reaso n
I s h a l l only mentio n here t h e most general an d conspicuous .
The many case forms i n noun s d o no t represen t a s
significant a differenc e a s migh t appear i n t h i s respec t
t h e r e was s t i l l g r e a t e r d i s s i m i l a r i t y betwee n t h e inni c an d
appish languages , betwee n Germa n an d Danish . I t i s a l s o
clear t h a t th e principa l form s i n t h e Slavic languages a r e
t h e sam e four a s in t h e Gothic , viz. t h e nominative, t h e
accusative, t h e genitive , an d t h e dative fo r adjectives lac k
t h e vocative , an d t h e instrumenta l i s merel y a modificatio n
of t h e dative a s in atin t h e locative , however , 1 i s
developed fro m t h e genitiv e o r t h e dative, a s i s c l e a r l y see n
in th e adjectives . T h i s a s well a s t h e s i m i l a r i t y t o t h e
Gothic languages will become mor e apparen t t h r o u g h a n
example. goos e i s calle d ges in olis h an d g si n
Icelandic, an d i s inflecte d a s follow s

olish Icelandic
sing. nom. and voc. g g s
accus, g s
genit. g si g sar
dative g si
instr. g sia g s wit h the articl e
loc. g si g sinni
T ES R E T EG T I G GES 121

plur. nom . and voc . g si g sir


ace. g si gsesir
gen. g si g sa
dat. g sio g s
instr. g sia i or
loc. g sia gseso

I hav e take n t h e l i b e r t y of a r r a n g i n g t h e case s


according t o ho w the y agre e most and n a t u r a l l y see m t o
corne from one anothe r i n a l l language s familiar t o me i t
i s notabl e t h a t t h e concept s whic h the y e x p r e s s a r e r e l a t e d
t o t h e sam e degree a s t h e ending s o r forms denotin g them.
The Slavic genitive i n i replaces t h e ithuania n i n ies
and correspond s t o t h e ati n i n is o f t h e t h i r d declension
in t h e Slavic languages s i s frequently dropped a t t h e end
of a s y l l a b l e . Th e Icelandi c genitiv e i n - a r , 1 on t h e
o t h e r hand, seems t o correspon d t o t h e Gree k i n -o e.g .
o ) fo r i n t h e Scandinavia n language s s i s r e g u l a r l y
changed int o r i n t h e endings . Th e Slavic dativ e form i n - i
i s t h e original , correspondin g t o t h e ati n i n - i an d t h e
Greek i n e.g . ) in Icelandi c i t i s droppe d o r a p o-
s t r o p h i z e d i n most feminine w o r d s , b u t i t i s foun d i n some
i t i s a quit e common occurrence in Icelandi c t h a t a vowe l i s
discarded a t t h e end . I t i s eas y t o se e t h a t t h e
instrumental i n i an d t h e locativ e i n - i a r e merel y
modifications of t h e dative j u s t a s i n ati n - e an d - i a s
t h e vowe l i t s e l f h a s disappeare d in Icelandic , modifications
of i t n a t u r a l l y coul d n o t possibl y occu r t h e r e e i t h e r . I n t he
p l u r a l , t h e Slavic ending i b y droppin g s h a s once mor e
replaced t h e ithuania n s whic h corresponds t o ati n is o r
es an d Gree k - ) wherea s t h e Icelandi c her e again
h a s arise n b y changing s t o r . Th e genitive s a r e mor e
d i s s i m i l a r , which ma y b e explaine d e i t h e r b y an interchang e
of t h e vowel s a r i t h e ithuania n endin g i s ), o r t h e
Icelandic genitive migh t perhap s b e compare d t o t h e Slavi c
122 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

locative, but t h a t i s a s ye t uncertain . In c o n t r a s t , t h e


Icelandic dativ e i s c l e a r l y t h e same a s t h e olis h dativ e an d
instrumental t h e atin in i s a l s o appears t o b e t h e
same endin g which h a s f i r s t becom e t i s from whic h t h e
ithuanian endin g i s i is an d t h e Moesogothic i late r
perhaps i s from which t h e olis h an d Russia n an d
Icelandic. he n due r e g a r d i s ha d t o t h e changes require d
by t h e specific pronunciation an d soun d o f e i t h e r language ,
t h e s i m i l a r i t y i s , then , f a r g r e a t e r tha n i t woul d o t h e r w i s e
appear. T h i s i s an exampl e of t h e s i x t h declensio n 1 5
in olish an d t h e seventh i n Icelandic fo r th e other s I
s h a l l confine myself t o a fe w observations . The f i r s t end s
in o o r e in Russian an d olish , but in Moesogothic
a l w a y s in in nglo- Saxon a l w a y s i n - e , i n Icelandi c i n
a Th e secon d and fift h hav e n o specia l endin g i n t h e
Slavic languages , but i n t h e etti c t h e correspondin g
declensions hav e s o r as an d s i n t h e nominative , which
according t o t h e above-mentione d s h i f t i s t h e Icelandi c ror
r i n t h e fift h Icelandic . Th e genitiv e endin g i n t h e f i r s t
two declension s i s a i n a l l t h e s e Slavi c languages an d i n
Icelandic. Th e t h i r d end s i n a bot h i n Slavic and Icelandi c
and h a s in t h e accusative. I n t h e p l u r a l o f t h e f i r s t t h e
Slavic languages hav e a a s i n ati n an d Greek , a s well a s
Moesogothic, but Icelandic h a s - her e t h r o u g h a no t unusua l
vowel s h i f t i n t h e second and fift h t h e Slavic languages
have o r - i whic h i s t h e Icelandi c ir accus, - i i n t h e
fifth an d esp . t h e s i x t h i n t h e t h i r d an d s i x t h t h e Slavic
languages a l s o have - i whic h s i m i l a r l y i s t h e Icelandi c ir
in t h e sevent h declension i n t h e f i r s t an d t h i r d t h e
Icelandic genitiv e end s i n na t h i s h a s bee n dropped i n t h e
Slavic languages but i n t h e secon d in -a t h i s t h e Slav s
have kep t an d change d int o o th e dative h a s a
throughout i n Russia n an d o i n olish , whic h i s evidentl y
t h e Icelandi c o o r - t h a t i s likewis e foun d throughou t
in a l l declensions . Th e second s y s t e m h a s s t i l l g r e a t e r
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 12

s i m i l a r i t y t o t h e Gothic languages t h e f o u r t h declensio n


may b e compare d t o t h e Moesogothi c an d Icelandi c w o r d s i n
- i o f t h e fourt h declension . I t s ending s a r e i n t h e p l u r a l

1 6 olish Russian Moesogothi c Icelandi c


nom. voc. ia i
acc. ia -i a i
gen. - ia
dat. io -i io
i n s t r . ia i io r
loc. ia i

The fift h an d s i x t h declensio n hav e a l r e a d y bee n talke d


about.
The adjective s a r e r e l a t e d i n t h e same way, especiall y
t o t h e mor e complex , indefinite system o f Icelandic, bu t a l s o
p a r t l y t o t h e o t h e r simpler, definite system. Th e nominative
of n e u t e r s i n - e o r o whic h l a t t e r , however , i s actuall y
t h e endin g of t h e adverb) , o f masculines i n o r - i , an d o f
feminines in a correpond s t o t h e definit e nominativ e i n
Icelandic e.g . gr o gr e gr gr a Icel . ad gr a s
gr i s gr a Th e Russian dative neute r and masculin e i n
o e a s well a s t h e instrumenta l i n i an d t h e
locative i n o e correspond t o t h e Moesogothi c an d
t h e Icelandi c o r o j u s t a s i n t h e p l u r a l t h e dative
ending i and t h e instrumenta l i i i of a l l genders
correspond t o t h e Moesogothi c ending s rea d mm) au.
and t h e Icelandi c I n nouns t h e locativ e invariabl y end s
in a or in t h e p l u r a l i n adjective s i t equal s t h e
genitive an d end s i n o r i thi s corresponds t o t h e
ithuanian locativ e p l u r a l , whic h end s i n se i n t h e masculin e
and i n osa esa isa issa in t h e feminine , i n accordance wit h a
s h i f t whic h i s frequen t i n t h e s e languages, e.g . Russia n
a ith. ss ' a fly', lo ith . l ss an d many
others. u t 1 t h i s ithuania n endin g i s evidentl y t h e
12 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

same a s t h e M sogothi c genitiv e p l u r a l o f adjective s whe n


they a r e in indefinit e position, viz. i n t h e neute r an d
masculine an d i n t h e feminin e read se , s o wit h
soft s ) now , sinc e s i s change d int o r b y t h e Icelanders
a s w e hav e a l r e a d y see n i n a numbe r o f endings , an d sinc e
t h e endings , accordin g t o w h a t w e sa w previousl y p . 60) ,
a r e usuall y shortene d a s much a s possible , w e understand
how t h i s se, s o woul d hav e t o becom e ' r a i n Icelandi c an d
nglo-Saxon. Thus w e realiz e t h a t t h e endin g whic h i n t h e
Slavic adjectives occurre d bot h i n t h e genitiv e an d locativ e
i s t h e sam e a s t h e on e foun d i n ithuania n i n t h e locativ e
only, i n t h e Gothi c language s in t h e genitiv e only , howeve r
different a n appearance i t h a s assume d by v i r t u e o f t h o s e
peculiar s h i f t s i se, isa , ra e
s h a l l se e i n t h e followin g t h a t t h e r e i s goo d reaso n t o
assume t h e Icelandic an d nglo-Saxon form t o b e th e
original, excep t t h a t the y hav e omitte d t h e auxiliar y vowe l
in fron t b y a contraction . I n t h e form s fo r compariso n
these languages d o no t see m t o hav e an y s i m i l a r i t y t o t h e
Gothic languages.
mong t h e pronouns , t h e f i r s t tw o person s sho w a
considerable amount o f correspondenc e wit h t h e Gothic and
t h e classica l languages . Thus. , e.g, , fo r t h e f i r s t perso n

Russian olis h Gothic


nom. ia Icel. eg Dan . eg Jutlandi c a
Swed. ag
acc. ena ni e ie ig Dan . an d Swed . ig
gen. ena nie n
dat. n nie i M sog. Icel . r Germ.
ir according t o t h e s h i f t
which w e hav e see n s o many
times.
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 125

1 8 olish, i n p a r t i c u l a r , h a s preserved t h e ol d forms


corresponding t o th e Gothic ones . In th e p l u r a l w e ma y
note

Russian olis h
Gr. Moesog . rea d v s)
nom. Icel. r ngloS . e Dan . i
at. nos Moesog. o Germ , ns
acc. nas nas Dutch ons Icel . oss Dan. os
nostri Moesog . o Germ .
gen. nas nas nser
no i s Moesog . o ngloS .
d a t . na na si Germ , ns Icel . oss
instr. n i na i
In t h e Germanic languages n i s transposed , an d i n t h e
ordic assimilate d wit h s into ss Th e interchange o f
and or is common.
The 2 . perso n i s

In Russ . I n olis h
nom. t t Gr. at . t Moesog. o
Icel. Dan. , Swed. , an d
Germ. d
acc. te a ie ie i at . te Germ, di Icel .
ig Dan. an d Swed . dig
d a t . te to ie i at. ti i Germ , dir Icel . r
plur. Germ. r Moesog . o Dutc h
g ngloS. ge Dan.
acc. as as at. os
dat. a arn o is
instr. i a i

In t h e t h i r d person also, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n olish , a


number o f ending s resemble t h o s e o f Icelandic , suc h a s
126 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

1 9 masc. femin.
nom. on ona Icel. ann n Swed. on
acc. ona ann ana
gen. one ans ennar Swed . ennes
d a t . one one
- on enni Swed . enne
l o c . on one

In t h e Slavic languages t h i s wor d h a s a l s o neu ter and


p l u r a l , whic h a r e lackin g in t h e ordi c languages beside s
t h i s form, i t a l s o h a s another, s h o r t e r one both i n Russia n
and olis h whic h corresponds t o t h e t h i r d person in t he
Germanie languages I s h a l l l i s t t h e most important ending s
or form s o f t h a t on e t o o , becaus e the y ma y serv e t o
c o r r o b o r a t e wha t w a s said abov e concernin g t h e r , in t he
p l u r a l ra o f t h e Icelandi c genitives , an d o n t h e whol e a s
proof o f kinship .

Russian olis h i th. Moesog. Germ . ngloS . ati n


sing, masculine
nom. lackin g lackin g is er e is
gen. ego iego o is e s
dat. e ie a dat.ei
instr. i lc. a e o hi i
loc. i i
sing, feminin e
nom. i ) eo ea
gen. e e ie os i rer ire e
dat. e ie ei
i r ire
instr. e e J

150 plur. i n al l gender s


Russian ithuania n
gen. i Moesog. gen . Germ .
loc. o ni se os J i rer nglo-S . ira
dat. i ie s dat. Germ , i nen
instr. i eis J nglo-S. i
T ES R E T EG T I G GES 12

The possessiv e pronoun s als o exhibit a clos e


relationship to the Gothic and classica l languages , bu t thi s
is a consequenc e of tha t o f th e persona l pronouns. Th e rest
show n o particula r agreement , excep t sa sa a sa o self),
the Icel . sa r s sa t or commonl y sa i sa a sa a Dan .
den sa e isting th e ending s of thi s wor d woul d b e red -
undant since th e correspondenc e is th e sam e here a s i n thos e
already quoted .
The numeral s ar e almost al l th e sam e as in th e Gothi c
languages and , bein g mor e complex , ma y serv e t o thro w ligh t
on th e declensio n o f th e Icelandi c numerals . Thus ,

Russian olis h
odin eden i s t h e Icelandi c einn read
ejdn), b u t i t s inflection i n
b o t h language s i s lik e t h a t
of adjectives .
d a d d oie d a d ie Moesog. Icel .
t t eir t r Germ, ei
tri tr Icel. r r Germ, drei Dan .
tre

These two hav e a special declension i n Icelandi c ver y


similar t o tha t o f Russian an d olish .

151
neuter an d mase . fem. neuter masc . fem.
n. an d v . d a d t t eir t r
acc. d a d d t t t r
gen. d t eggia
dat. d t ei o r
instr. d J t ei r nglo-S . t a
128 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

n. an d v . tri ri rr ri r
ace. tre riggia
dat. tre re or
instr. tre a re r

Russian olis h
e et re ter ith. et ri Moesog.
or Icel. i g r o r g r
at. at or an d eol .
Gr. are actuall y th e
same word .
t i - en i Gr . eol.
Moesog. Germ. n Icel .
i Dan . e at. in e is
t h e same .
s est' se - s e s Moesog . Germ.
se s at. an d Icel . se
se ' sied se t ni Moesog. Germ.
sie en Dan. s Icel . si
152 os ' os as t ni Moesog. h Germ.
a t at o to Icel . tta
d t' d ie i de ni
d s t' d iesi d s i ti Moesog. ho v
at. de ern Gr. Germ, e n
ngloS. t n Icel . t Dan . ti
sto sto one
hundred'))
t s a t sia 'on e Moesog. Icel. s
thousand') nd or s ndrad seem
ith. t s t o b e compose d o f t h e S l a -
tan t is vic wor d an d t h e ordi c nd
o r ndrad 'on e hundred' l a t e r
i t h a s becom e s n d Dan .
send wit h omitted.
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 12 9

numbe r o f th e ordinals , too , exhibi t similarit y t o


those o f th e Gothi c languages , suc h a s Russ . r o
ith. ir as nglo-S . or a an d olis h ier s Icel .
r sti al l o f whic h undoubtedl y com e fro m th e sam e root ,
viz. th e prepos . or Russ . red ith . ir o r ra ro Germ .
or o r r Icel . rir onl y wit h differen t endings th e
Russian endin g o appear st ob e th e sam ea s th e
ithuanian an d nglo-Saxon , a s wel l a s at . s i n pri s,
by a n interchang e o f an d Icel . rsti i s mad e wit h th e
ending o f th e superlativ e jus t a s th e ati n an d Gree k
fo r ) , olis h s likewise , i s a superlativ e
form. Russ . tr te olis h tr e i ith . tr ias i s
terti s Icel . ridi Dan . tredie Russ . et rto olis h
art ar e closes t t o at . art s bu t stil l als o th e sam e
as th e 15 contracte d nglo-S . e rda fo r feoverda ) Icel .
rdi D a n . er de u t thes e ar e actuall y lexica l
correspondances, s o I shal l pas s ove r th e rest i t i s als o
natural tha t th e ordinals , bein g derived , shoul d exhibi t
similarity, whe n th e cardinals , fro m whic h the y come ,
exhibit it .
The Slavi c ver b inflectio n o r conjugation , too , i s no t
without som e remarkabl e correspondence s wit h th e Gothi c an d
the classica l languages . I n Russian , th e firs t perso n alway s
ends i n or whic h correspond s t o Gr . an d at . o . I n
olish thi s mos t ofte n ha s becom e e whic h correspond s t o
the Germa n e e.g . i e ic h a e Russ . og olis h oge
I can ) Germ , ag ge u t i n Icelandi c thi s vowe l i s
dropped, lik e other s a t th e en d o f words when , therefore ,
an Icelandi c ver b end s i n a vowe l i n th e firs t person , i t i s
not th e ending , bu t th e origina l vowe l i n verb a pura , e.g . e g
a i - whic h i s see n bot h fro m th e secon d perso n a ir
and fro m th e olis h i e an d imperf . i a s wel l a s
infin. i fo r tha t reaso n i t i s i n fac t lackin g i n verb a
impura, e.g . ol . sied i e Germ , sit e Icel . sit at . sedeo
Th e secon d perso n end s i n s whic h i s th e Germa n st
1 0 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

at. and Moesog. s and Icel . r accordin g t o t h e familia r


shift e.g . is d u a est a ir Th e t h i r d
person end s i n t in Russian , whic h i s t h e at. and Germa n t
t h e Moesog. and n g l o - S . an d t h e Engl . t o r s I n
t h e p l u r a l , t h e f i r s t perso n end s i n i n olish , i n in
Russian, whic h i s t h e Gr . or , at. s Moesog. and
Icel. which i n Germa n h a s becom e n t h e secon d i n c ie i n
olish, te in Russian , whic h i s t h e Gr . , at. tis German
t Moesog. and Icel . d or t The t h i r d end s 15 i n
Russian i n t o g at whic h i s t h e ol d Gr . ov , at. nt ant
ent an d t h e like , t h e Moesog. , and, nt havin g bee n
discarded, t h e olis h a Icel . a .
The correspondence s wil l becom e cleare r t h r o u g h a n
example

Russian olis h ati n Icelandi c


singular
e ie edo eda t
t es ies es edis t r
on est ie est edit t r
er is t

plural
ed ie edi s t arch. s u b j . ti
edite ie ie editis tit o r tid
oni edat ied a ed nt edant ta

rom t h i s i t i s see n t h a t t h e f i r s t perso n a l s o


sometimes end s i n whic h howeve r i s ver y r a r e i n Russian ,
nor i s i t frequen t i n olish tha t correspond s t o t h e
ithuanian an d Gree k v e r b s i n i an d t o t h e ati n p r e s . s u b j .
and fut.indic, i n Ther e i s a l s o a remnan t o f t h i s in
Icel. e Engl , a an d Germa n in at. s ccordingly ,
agreement i s ver y considerabl e i n t h e presen t tense , bu t eve n
t h e peculia r p a s t o f t h e Slavi c language s i s perhap s no t s o
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 1

alien t o t h e Gothi c language s a s i t migh t appea r a t f i r s t


glance. I t wa s observe d abov e o n p . 5 0 t h a t l an d d a s
well a s s and d a l t e r n a t e wit h eac h o t h e r no t infrequently ,
and t h a t a s h i f t s int o e a t t h e en d o f words observin g
t h a t , i t ma y perhap s no t b e a l t o g e t h e r unreasonabl e t o
compare t h e olis h ending s i n t h e masculin e wit h t h e Moeso -
gothic an d Icelandi c i n a l l gender s
155
sing. 1 .- e Moesog. -
2. - es -
. i fem . ita - -
plur. 1. ilis - -
2. ilis ie - -
. ili - - .

In t h e o t h e r Gothi c language s thes e ending s hav e bee n


contracted, especiall y i n t h e p l u r a l , wher e t h e doubl e d h a s
become a singl e d o r t beside s t h e pur e v e r b s i n i
invariably los e t h i s i , i n p a r t i c u l a r i n Icelandic . I t ma y no t
be devoi d o f i n t e r e s t t o giv e a n exampl e i n whic h t h e wor d
i s t h e sam e an d t h e ending s hav e n o vowe l i n fron t o f the m
in an y o f t h e languages . s suc h ma y serv e t h e p a s t o f
oge I can ) Moesog. Germ, ag Icel .

Moesogoth. Germa n Icelandic


Sing. 1 . og e o te atta
2. og es o test ttir
. og a h o te tti
lur. 1. oglis o ten tt
oglis ie o tet tt d
. ogli o ten tt
1 2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

The conditiona l moo d h a s almos t t h e sam e ending s a s


t h e declarative , i n t h e Slavi c language s a s i n t h e Gothic . I n
c o n t r a s t , t h e imperativ e usuall y form s t h e 2 . perso n singula r
by discardin g th e infinitiv e marker sometime s t h e precedin g
vowel i s a l s o dropped , i n t h e cas e o f pur e verbs , bot h i n
t h e Slavi c an d 156 Gothi c languages e.g . Icel.
a t however , i t i s a l s o sometime s forme d i n o t h e r
ways i n olis h an d Russian . I n Icelandic , t h e t h i r d perso n
a s wel l a s t h e p l u r a l a r e take n fro m th e presen t o f t h e
conditional mood , whic h i s ver y simila r t o t h a t o f t h e
declarative i n olis h an d Russian , too , t h e r e s t o f t h i s
mood i s a modificatio n o f t h e declarative . Th e
impersonal moo d end s mostl y i n t in Russian , a s i n t h e
ettic an d appis h languages , an d neithe r t h a t no r t h e
adjectival form s participia) appear t o exhibi t an y noticeabl e
s i m i l a r i t y t o t h e Gothi c languages . Reflexiv e v e r b s , a s
well a s sometime s t h e passiv e form , a r e forme d b y attachin g
the syllabl e s a f t e r t h e active , whe n i t end s i n a
consonant, an d s' whe n a vowe l precedes i n olis h sie i s
placed a f t e r a s a s e p a r a t e wor d i n a l l cases . T h i s sie or
sa i s a c t u a l l y t h e accusativ e o f t h e reflexiv e pronou n i n t h e
. perso n instea d o f sie ie Russ. se ) but i n thes e case s
i t i s i n fac t use d indifferentl y abou t a l l persons . e shal l
see i n t h e followin g t h a t t h e passiv e o f t h e ordi c v e r b s
h a s exactl y t h e sam e origin .
mong t h e man y derivationa l ending s i n t h e s e language s
a r e foun d severa l whic h evidentl y correspon d t o t h o s e o f
ordic suc h a s
ar * correspond s t o t h e Icelandi c endin g ari which
denotes persons , Swed. are Dan. er e.g. l ar ' ' a doctor '
Swed. l are o ar ' 'a shepherd' .
in ol . ini which i s foun d i n feminin e w o r d s , e.g .
ogin 'goddess' , seem s t o correspon d t o Icelandi c nia e.g .
s nia a nia
s a i s use d t o mak e feminin e w o r d s fro m foreig n
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1

t i t l e s an d ranks , e.g . general ' s a 'general' s wife ' a it ns a


15 j u s t lik e t h e Swedis h s a p a r t l y a l s o t h e Danis h
s e in angers e agers e an d t h e like .
a p a r t l y make s feminin e w o r d s i n general , an d i n
p a r t i c u l a r , diminituve w o r d s , e.g . ast s a ' a shepherdess '
golo a ' a smal l head' exactl y t h e sam e i s t r u e o f t h e
Icelandic endin g a e.g . lad a fro m lad which i s a l s o
a kin d o f collectiv e wor d an d i s use d abou t t h e to p o f
plants l a 'smoothness, slipperiness' i s a l s o use d wit h
proper name s suc h a s tein a fro m tein n Th e Icelander s
a l s o hav e a correspondin g masculin e for m i n i e.g . s ein i
'a smal l boy' , a l s o a man' s name , r n i from r ni l r and
o t h e r s , whic h appear s t o correspon d t o t h e Slavi c i n i o r
e
o s t ' i s frequentl y use d t o mak e a qualit y nam e fro m
an adjective , e.g . s t r o g o s t ' 'severity' th e ol d Icelandi c
ending w a s osta now sta t h e Germa n st a s i n n sta
ienst oll sta dest and o t h e r s .
da i s likewis e use d t o mak e a b s t r a c t w o r d s , e.g .
ra da ' t r u t h ' t h e Icelander s us e d and w e de i n t h e sam e
way, e.g . leingd ngde in fact , t h e Icelander s a l s o hav e
another, r a r e r endin g da a s i n tregda 'difficulty ' fro m
tregr gda ' a curve' .
s i i s a frequen t endin g i n adjectives , esp . t h o s e
denoting peoples , s i m i l a r l y Icel . s r definite for m s e.g .
ols i ol . ols i Icel . ols r s ols i rossi s i r ssis r
s r ssis i 'th e olish' , 'th e Russian' , an d t h e like .
n a l s o make s man y adjectives , e.g . enn ol .
on 'learned' , te n ol. ie n 'dark' t o thi s
corresponds t h e Icelandi c 158 endin g inn a s i n er inn
'hardy', o r perhap s s t i l l close r n e.g . i n giarn 'liabl e to' ,
with t h e a r t i c l e s er ni giarni a s wel l a s t h e ati n
ending n s e.g. dign s Icel . t ginn len s ol . el
n i s ofte n foun d i n verbs , s i m i l a r l y Icelandi c na
our ner a s in er n r ner an d man y o t h e r s .
1 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

aving foun d suc h considerabl e agreemen t i n a l l p a r t s


of languag e s t r u c t u r e , w e a r e a l r e a d y prepare d t o fin d a
g r e a t numbe r o f s i m i l a r i t i e s i n t h e vocabular y o f thes e
languages, an d i n fac t t h i s expectatio n i s no t mistaken .
owever, a ver y complet e collectio n o f suc h w o r d s b y e ler
i s foun d i n t h e ransa tions o t e o al o iet o ien es
and etters vol . 12 i n o r d e r t o avoi d bein g circumstantial ,
I s h a l l therefor e merel y mak e a fe w observation s her e
concerning t h e mos t frequen t s h i f t s o f l e t t e r s fro m t h e
Slavic t o o t h e r languages , whic h appear s t o b e necessar y i n
o r d e r fo r anyon e t o mak e a fai r evaluatio n o f a wor d
collection o f t h i s kin d an d t o discove r mor e s i m i l a r i t i e s s
t h r o u g h hi w ow n investigatio n o f t h e languages .
The followin g wil l frequentl y b e foun d
o fo r a e.g . sol ' at . sal ore are nos nas s Germ .
ase o o tranquility , peace ) a gen . a is rea d pakis) ,
g o s t ' Germ . ast Dan . est ot Dan . at ot father )
apl. att e Moesog . - e i s a derivationa l endin g o f
masculines).
o e i otel Icel . till ' a kettle' , og n ' ol . ogie n
gen. o gna at . ignis lon l Icel . ilia Germ . ille
ollen at . olo elie no ol . no Germ , meu at .
no s
a ei ster Germ . eister ra 'once ' Icel . reisa
Durch rei e
159 o tro i Icel . r 'eyebrows' , o a ' a sheep '
Icel. ith . a is at . o is
gl 'stupid ' Icel . gl r gr gr r Germ .
gro l di li dir o r l dir 'people' , ' 'drink ' arch ,
), fro m whic h .
s h o r t vowe l a t t h e beginnin g i s droppe d na nad v ,
o od ,i ol . e .
s i s sometime s prefixed , a s s ert ' 'death ' ors ortis
sla a Icel . lo at . la s 'praise , glory' , snieg ni s el '
Germ. o el
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 5

s s s est ' se s it ' s as tan a Dan .e n


astanie s ' s
t er erto e 'throw ' itto e ' Icel .
ir 'sword' .
d g si ' s i sedeo i ideo r a ' a jug '
Germ. r g
i s droppe d befor e s t d g a s i n s ' a month '
ensis t' , grad grando 'hail' , l d e ol . ied i e
'loin', Germ , die ende strogi ' s t r i c t ' Icel . str ngr
correspond s t o t h e Germa n t t h e Icel . tt a s i n
no ' a t n tt o ' a t ttr doe ' o ter
d ttir
er i s droppe d a t t h e en d o f w o r d s , a s at * ater
rat rater g s ' Icel . g s Germ . ans at . anser e '
ir ' a sword' , an d o t h e r s .
n t h e o t h e r hand , t h e Slav s hav e ofte n adde d a
special derivationa l endin g t o w o r d s whic h mus t b e separate d
from the m i n o r d e r t o realiz e t h e correspondence , a s i n
ol. ol enie Russ . oi ' 'pain ' Icel . i Russ . s i n e Dan .
oi an d ot e o a mentione d above ra e Icel . a r
Dan. re te n 'dark ' Icel . di r rn 'faithful ,
t r u s t w o r t h y ' at . er s th e Russian s a l s o hav e 160 a
s h o r t e r wor d era 'faith , religion' t h e meaning s a r e r e l a t e d
in t h e sam e wa y a s i n Engl . tr e tr t glad i Dan . glat
g l d i t ' 't o smooth' dre l 'slumber' , infinitiv e dre t '
Dan. dr e i i 'love ' n g l o - S . l i e Engl . lo e fro m
l Icel . li r Germ . lie ale t ' Dan . at ale
pingere).
Transposition, especiall y o f t h e liqui d l e t t e r s , i s ver y
frequent her e a l s o lad t ' 't o rule ' Icel . alda ln
ol. el len s Germ , oll Slavon . Russ . ra o ol . ra i e
ohem, ra e 'shoulder ' Icel . ar r at . ar s ra ol .
ro 'darkness' ol . sl 'wedding ' arch . Icel . s ls l
'feast, drinking-bout' .
Sometimes w o r d s a r e expande d i n t h e Slavi c language s
1 6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

by a n insertio n o f e or o whic h seem s t o b e determine d b y


t h e followin g vowel e.g . dre o or dere o ' a t r e e ' dro a
'firewood' Moesog. nglo-S.' treo Icel . tre Dan . r
oroda ol . roda Germ. art ar a olo o ol . le o
i l el sere ro ol. sre ro Moesog . Germ.
il er Icel . sil r
S t i l l more ofte n the y a r e contracted , e.g . l g a t ' li ga
'lie', gla ith . igla Gr . 'mist' da o 'reward',
dolgi o 'long', do a id a 'widow* .
Many w o r d s a r e exactl y t h e same , wit h j u s t t h e endin g
being changed , e.g . s n 'a son ' arch . Icel . s n rea d syn)
rad Dan. en ad do 'a house ' o do s ad ' ' a b a r r e l '
ad s da t ' da re olot' olere se ic h s e Dan. jeg
saar ol. s t a stare n n - Germ, n n do 'to ' Germ .
Engl , to an d severa l o t h e r s .
The reaso n wh y I hav e take n t h e l i b e r t y o f l i s t i n g ,
indiscriminately, th e s i m i l a r i t i e s bot h t o t h e classica l an d t o
t h e Gothi c language s wil l becom e apparen t i n t h e following
but accordin g t o th e r u l e s s t a t e d i n t h e beginning , w h a t wa s
l i s t e d her e undoubtedl y a l r e a d y full y e n t i t l e s u s t o th e
conclusion t h a t a n 161 essentia l kinshi p obtain s betwee n
t h e Slavi c an d t h e Gothi c languag e c l a s s - whic h wa s a l s o
assumed, althoug h poorl y proved , b y enina i n h i s t r e a t i s e
r l'origine o ne des lang es alle ande es la onne o
olonoise latine in t h e oires de erlin fo r 1 9 and
95, whic h reveal s a clea r an d c o r r e c t overall comprehensio n
but superficia l knowledg e i n d e t a i l s , man y ridiculou s e r r o r s
being committed . Indeed , a l r e a d y eibnitz , i n on e o f h i s
l e t t e r s t o otto n s a y s n la oni a ling a lta s nt
o nis originis ger ani is nonn lla et grse is
owever, t h e ag e o f bot h appear s equal , an d t h e c o n t r a s t
between t h e i r pronunciatio n an d entir e soun d ver y
considerable, t h e agreemen t betwee n t h e vocabular y o f bot h
a l s o perhap s to o smal l t o assum e on e t o hav e sprun g fro m
t h e o t h e r . Too , man y o f t h e actua l correspondence s becam e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1

r e a l l y obviou s onl y b y mean s o f t h e ithuania n o r t h e


classical languages , an d t h u s di d no t appea r t o b e direct .
rom a l l t h i s , then , i t seem s t o follow , t h a t t h e Slavi c
languages, inasmuc h a s the y exhibi t a n origina l an d
significant kinshi p t o t h e Gothic , grammaticall y a s wel l a s
lexically, mus t b e considere d f a r mor e importan t fo r t h e
a n a l y s i s o f t h e Icelandi c languag e tha n an y o f a l l t h e
language c l a s s e s mentione d s o far , bu t s t i l l canno t ver y wel l
be assume d t o hol d t h e sourc e o f t h e l d orse i n ou r
search fo r t h a t , accordingly , w e mus t procee d s t i l l f u r t h e r .

6. etti c

esides t h e Slavi c t r i b e , t h e inni c h a s ye t anothe r


neighbor, viz . t h e ol d etti c t r i b e , whos e f i r s t mai n s e a t
known t o u s wa s i n r u s s i a , an d t o whic h belon g t h e ol d
162 r ssians r ssai th e p r e s e n t - d a y it anians
iet inin ai wh o a r e agai n divide d int o severa l t r i b e s ,
and t h e etts prope r at i t t h e tim e whe n t h i s grou p
of people s ha d i t s g r e a t e s t know n expansion , i t wa s confine d
by t h e Slavi c an d t h e innis h groups . u t t h e ends , wh o
lived t o t h e es t o f them , a s wel l a s t h e ol d r u s s i a n s ,
were subjugate d o r d e s t r o y e d b y t h e Germans , an d t h e
Germans wh o s e t t l e d i n t h e countr y o f t h e l a t t e r , r u s s i a ,
have sinc e com e t o b e name d r u s s i a n s , bu t mus t b e
carefully distinguishe d fro m t h e ol d i n h a b i t a n t s , wh o
belonged t o t h e etti c grou p o f people . I t i s a l s o importan t
t o not e th e endis h peopl e inhabitin g omerania ,
randenburg, usatia , Mecklenbur g an d p a r t o f olstein a r e
definitely no t t h e ol d origina l i n h a b i t a n t s o f t h i s t e r r i t o r y ,
a s quit e c o r r e c t l y observe d an d prove d b y Thunman n i n h i s
excellent note s o n Schl zer's Scandinavian istory bot h i n
t h e s e endis h land s an d i n r u s s i a w e fin d i n forme r time s
nothing bu t branche s o f t h e Gothi c t r i b e b y t h e nam e o f
1 8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

Gothonians, Guttonians , urgundian s an d Rugians , a s wel l a s


Vits or Vidivarians , whic h l a t t e r name , a s Thunman n
observes, wa s l a t e r applie d t o t h e e t t s . Th e Goths , h e
thinks, migrate d fro m her e t o mor e s o u t h e r l y regions bu t
a ne w s e p a r a t e t r i b e o f people , t h e ettic , a r o s e , b y
amalgamation, ou t o f t h e remainin g fe w wh o s t a y e d behind ,
t h e inn s livin g t o t h e o r t h e a s t , an d t h e Slavs . e want s
t o prov e t h i s opinio n concernin g t h e origi n o f t h e e t t s i n
which h e appear s t o b e l e s s successfu l tha n i n w h a t h e s a y s
about t h e Slavs ) p a r t l y h i s t o r i c a l l y , p a r t l y fro m t h e i r
language, whic h i s allege d t o consis t entirel y o f Slavic ,
Gothic an d innis h w o r d s . delung, i n h i s M i t h r i d a t e s , h a s
made t h e sam e assumption , presumabl y afte r him
nonetheless I believ e t h e opposit e c l e a r l y ca n b e proved .
i r s t , fro m t h e fac t t h a t t h e h i s t o r i a n s d o no t t a l k abou t
t h e i r a r r i v a l nothin g ca n b e concluded , no r fro m t h e fac t
t h a t o t h e r people s a r e mentione d b y the m i n t h e i r country
16 fo r t h i s merel y show s t h e perpetua l roamin g o f thes e
t r i b e s i n t h e ol d d a y s , whic h i s a l r e a d y a n e s t a b l i s h e d fact .
They ma y a l s o possibl y refe r t o th e ne w etti c r e s i d e n t s b y
t h e name s o f t h e ol d i n h a b i t a n t s , j u s t a s t h e German s i n
r u s s i a a r e name d a f t e r t h e ol d o r u s s a i o r r u s s a i , an d
s t i a n s appear s f i r s t t o hav e denote d a Gothi c o r ettic ,
later a inni c t r i b e why , Thunman n himsel f observe s t h a t
t h e ol d nam e its was applie d t o t h e newl y a r r i v e d e t t s .
These Vits o r Vid s o r Vidivarian s a r e undoubtedl y t h e sam e
a s thos e calle d t h e e ids wit h a kin d o f a s p i r a t i o n i n
front, b y t h e Greek s an d Roman s instea d o f Gvids wit h a
h a r d pronunciation) . idi arians a l s o seem s t o b e t h e sam e
name, wit h t h e nglo-Saxo n endin g are ordic erian
which ofte n denote s t h e i n h a b i t a n t s o f a country , wit h
corresponding adjective s i n ers r which a r e ver y frequen t
in Icelandic e.g . eriar 'th e r e s i d e n t s o f Vige n i n
orway', ers r 'wh o i s fro m Vigen' , i d eriar
'Germans', d ers r 'German', sa ers r 'Samaritan' ,
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 9

l t ers r ' utheran', etc . ccordingly , i t doe s no t see n t h a t


t h i s endin g wa s adde d t o t h e name s o f people s i n o r d e r t o
denote thos e fe w wh o remaine d behin d whe n t h e g r e a t e r p a r t
had bee n expelle d o r ha d departed r a t h e r , wher e severa l
names occu r bot h wit h an d withou t t h i s ending , i t
undoubtedly come s simpl y fro m t h e fac t t h a t t h e nam e h a s
come e i t h e r fro m a foreig n o r fro m a Gothi c annalist . I f
we assum e t h i s abou t Vids , Gepids , an d Vidivarians , w e
understand Jornandes' s accoun t whe n h e s a y s t at in t e
oldest ti es ot s li ed at t e o t all o t e ist la later
e ids a Gothi c t r i b e whic h ha d t h e uppe r han d a f t e r t h e
exodus o f t h e former) , 16 and inall a ter t ese
de arted to ards t e o ans idi arians li ed t ere tha t
i s t o say , no t a l l Vid s departed , bu t som e di d who m h e
c a l l s Gepid s i n ati n a f t e r t h e usag e o f h i s mothe r tongue ,
t h e Gothi c language , withou t realizin g t h a t the y wer e t h e
same - i n whic h h e wa s probabl y impede d b y t h e Roma n
d i s t o r t i o n o f t h e name , c o n t r a s t i n g wit h t h e Gothic) . ese
onsisted o ario s eo les o ad o e toget er and
so g t re ge ere i.e . t h e etti c t r i b e s cam e i n a f t e r t h e
Vids wer e weakene d b y t h e g r e a t exodu s t h a t o f t h e
Gepids) t o w a r d s t h e Romans , an d expelle d t h e o t h e r s o r
mixed wit h the m an d wer e calle d b y t h e nam e o f t h e e a r l i e r
i n h a b i t a n t s b y foreig n peoples . T h i s ma y a l s o ver y wel l
have contribute d t o t h e nam e no t bein g recognize d b y
Jornandes, a s i t ha d bee n t r a n s f e r r e d t o a t t r u l y differen t
group o f people wha t happene d t o t h o s e Vid s who m t h e
e t t s expelled , w e s h a l l soo n see) , o in is da o e er
onstit ted onl one single tri e viz . t h e ettic) . Th e
limitations o f t h e presen t t r e a t i s e d o no t allo w m e her e t o
expound i n detai l an d h i s t o r i c a l l y prov e t h e opinio n t h a t t h e
e t t s a r e a n extremel y ol d t r i b e , whic h h a s com e int o
r u s s i a b y migration , an d definitel y di d no t a r i s e fro m a
mixture o f Goths , Slav s an d inn s a t t h e mout h o f t h e
Vistula i n t h e . o r 5 . centuries bu t t h i s I ha d t o mentio n
1 0 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

in o r d e r a t l e a s t t o e s t a b l i s h t h a t m y clai m i s a s compat -
ible wit h t h e h i s t o r i c a l account s a s Thunmann's . s fa r a s
t h e languag e i s concerned , fro m i t s apparen t compositio n of ,
or s i m i l a r i t y to , o t h e r languages , n o conclusion s ca n b e
drawn concernin g t h a t o f t h e people t h e r e i s h a r d l y an y
word i n Syria c whic h i s no t foun d i n ebre w o r rabic , bu t
t h e S y r i a n s a r e no t fo r a l l t h a t 165 simpl y a mixtur e o f
J e w s an d r a b s t h e r e i s ver y l i t t l e i n appis h whic h i s
not a l s o found , i n fact , i n innis h an d ordic , bu t eve n s o
i t woul d b e equall y unreasonabl e t o assum e t h e app s t o
have arise n b y a blendin g o f inn s an d orsemen . u t a s
f a r a s t h e etti c people s a r e concerned , t h e i r language , whe n
we observ e i t closely , b e a r s som e ver y clea r s i g n s o f t h e i r
being a special , independen t grou p o f peopl e an d languag e
c l a s s bot h i n nou n an d ver b inflectio n i t i s differen t fro m
and mor e comple x t h a n t h e Slavi c languages , r a t h e r
different, a l s o , fro m t h e Gothic however , t h e notio n t h a t a
more comple x languag e shoul d r e s u l t fro m t h e blendin g o f
two simple r language s i s s o completel y c o n t r a r y t o a l l
experience concernin g t h e usua l cours e o f n a t u r e t h a t w e ma y
save ourselve s a l l f u r t h e r t r o u b l e o f refutin g t h e opinio n
r e f e r r e d t o concernin g t h e l a t e origi n o f t h e e t t s fro m
blending, an d f l a t l y declar e Thunmann' s clai m unprove d an d
unfounded, whe n h e s a y s s ist ni t gli das die
ettis e ation den eiten e istirte da das and
el es sie n n i esit at on andern l ern eset t
ar nd on ent ernten egenden ist sie ni t and die
stsee ge o en
ut if , i n fact , t h e ettic languages hav e s o muc h
s i m i l a r i t y t o t h e Slavic , whic h wer e s o closel y r e l a t e d t o
us, an d t o t h e Gothi c language s themselves , t h a t t o t h e
casual observe r the y appea r t o b e mixe d o f bot h - w e ma y
conclude t h a t the y mus t b e mor e closel y aki n t o u s t h a n t h e
Slavic languages , an d t h a t observin g the m somewha t mor e
closely i s quit e certai n t o b e w o r t h t h e t r o u b l e . I n doin g
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 1

so, I s h a l l mostl y stic k b y th e ithuania n o f r u s s i a , whic h


i s t h e pures t dialec t an d t h e on e studie d t h e most .
ronunciation an d o r t h o g r a p h y i s her e abou t th e sam e a s i n
t h e Slavi c languages .
ouns hav e onl y tw o genders , masculin e an d feminine .
djectives, i n c o n t r a s t , a l s o hav e a neuter , whic h i s t h e
simplest 166 form , fro m whic h f i r s t t h e masculin e an d
finally t h e feminin e originate . I n bot h o f thes e wor d
c l a s s e s , declensio n h a s number s a s i n Greek , an d noun s
have case s i n th e singular , i n t h e dual , an d 6 i n t h e
p l u r a l bu t adjective s hav e onl y 6 i n t h e singular , t h e
vocative bein g her e identica l wit h th e nominative . h . Ruhig
assumes 5 declension s i n h i s ithuania n grammar , o f whic h
t h e 1. , . an d 5 . contai n tw o c l a s s e s each . I t woul d
undoubtedly b e mor e c o r r e c t t o d i s c a r d t h e 5. , whic h merel y
contains tw o ver y small , i r r e g u l a r s u b c l a s s e s o f on e o f t h e
o t h e r s , an d divid e th e r e s t int o tw o s y s t e m s o r majo r types ,
a s i n t h e Gothi c an d Slavi c languages i n ithuanian , t h e s e
two type s diffe r a s follow s i n t h e f i r s t , t h e instrumenta l
singular h a s a simpl e endin g ver y s i m i l a r t o t h a t o f t h e
dative, bu t i n t h e secon d a n enlarge d endin g i n i i n t h e
f i r s t , t h e genitiv e singula r an d t h e nominativ e p l u r a l o f
masculines en d i n a vowel , i n t h e secon d i n s in bot h i n -
stances, lik e thos e o f t h e feminines throughout, t h e f i r s t
system distinguishe s bot h gender s muc h mor e carefull y t h a n
t h e second , i n whic h t h e differenc e betwee n the m i s mos t
insignificant. I t appear s mos t c o r r e c t t o divid e t h e f i r s t
one f u r t h e r int o tw o declensions , eac h wit h tw o s u b c l a s s e s .
The secon d actuall y c o n s t i t u t e s a singl e one an d ye t w e
may, no t inconveniently , divid e i t a l s o int o two , o f whic h t h e
former h a s tw o classe s an d beside s t h e above-mentione d
i r r e g u l a r one s whic h Ruhig makes int o t h e 5. sinc e t h i s
a g r e e s mos t closel y wit h h i s classification , I s h a l l a r r a n g e
them accordingl y
1 2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

. Th e firs t syste m
nom. gen. i n s t r . dua l plur . ace .
of m a s c . 1 . a ) as ai s
b) is io i i iei l s
16
of fem. 2. a) a os i os s
b) -e s i s s

.
The secon d syste m
of masc . . a ) is is -i i i is
of fem. b ) is is i i i s is
of masc . . s a s i s s

f course , i t i s a l s o quit e possibl e t o assum e t h e s e


c l a s s e s t o b e s e p a r a t e declensions , bu t i n t h a t cas e i t woul d
be mos t correct , o n accoun t wit h t h e agreemen t wit h t h e
adjectives, t o o r d e r the m differently , i.e . makin g t h e on e i n
as t h e f i r s t , i n a t h e second , i n is o th e third , i n e the
fourth, i n s t h e fifth , i n is o f masculine s t h e s i x t h an d o f
feminines t h e seventh , i f w e wante d t o s e p a r a t e t h e s e too
but i n t h a t cas e t h e mos t c o r r e c t thin g woul d b e t o assum e
6, an d le t th e tw o c l a s s e s i n is remai n withi n on e
declension, becaus e the y diffe r s o l i t t l e an d n o adjective s
correspond t o them . I f w e bea r i n min d t h a t n o
distinction i s mad e her e betwee n neute r an d masculine , w e
s h a l l fin d t h a t t h e s e declension s correspon d r a t h e r closel y
t o thos e o f Slavic , excep t t h a t t h e fourt h ithuania n i n s
i s d i s t r i b u t e d ove r t h e secon d an d fift h Russian , an d t h e
Slavic p l u r a l endin g correspond s t o t h e ithuania n dua l form .
ut s t i l l mor e conspicuou s i s t h e agreemen t wit h t h o s e o f
Greek an d atin , i.e . t h e f i r s t ithuania n declensio n
corresponds t o t h e Gree k masculine s i n and o
), t h e secon d t o t h e Gree k i n and ),
t h e t h i r d t o t h e Gree k and and t h e ati n i n es and is
t h e fourt h t o t h e Gree k i n 168 an d t o t h e ati n fourt h
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1

in s owever , i t shoul d b e note d also , t h a t t h e


ithuanians hav e t h e w o r d s i n a fro m thos e i n e everywhere
except i n th e dual , an d t h e masculine s fro m t h e feminines i n
is i n t h e dua l o f t h e t h i r d declension .
The adjective s correspon d closel y t o th e c l a s s e s o f
nouns, althoug h the y d e p a r t fro m t h e i r inflectio n i n som e
endings the y a r e o f a threefol d kind , endin g 1 ) i n a as
a e.g . i ta evil) i tas i t 2) in e is e, such a s
ger sne ger snis ger sne b e t t e r ) , or ) in u u s i , e.g .
gra beautiful) gra s gra i f t h e adjectiva l form s o f
verbs t h e i n t h e passiv e a l l correspon d t o t h e f i r s t
mentioned i n a as a , t h e activ e ones , o n t h e o t h e r hand ,
should actually , I suppose , correspon d t o t h e t h i r d
declension o f nouns , bu t i n fac t d e p a r t considerabl y fro m it ,
ending ) i n nt s for n t s ) n ti i n present an d future , bu t
5) i n t h e p a s t for m i n s es si The neute r o f a l l thes e
w o r d s i s onl y foun d i n t h e singular , an d d i f f e r s t h e r e fro m
t h e masculin e onl y i n t h e nominativ e an d t h e accusative , a s
in Gree k an d ati n excep t fo r t h e vocative . Thes e a r e easil y
seen t o correspon d t o t h e one s i n Greek , 1 ) i n at.
s a 2 ) approximatel y t o , at. e is is an d r e er
ris ) read a), ) at. ans and t h e
like, 5 ) and . djective s hav e t h e
usual degrees , whic h a r e distinguishe d b y ending s and , a l l
t h r e e o f them , mak e a distinctio n betwee n t h e gender s i n a l l
t h r e e numbers . urthermore , a pronou n is i i s ea) , whic h
s e r v e s a s a r t i c l e , ma y b e appende d a f t e r a l l o f them , bot h
p a r t s bein g change d a t t h e end , a s i n Icelandi c whe n t h e
a r t i c l e i s appende d a f t e r nouns , i n whic h cas e a l s o bot h t h e
word an d t h e a r t i c l e a r e changed . ronoun s a l s o hav e
numbers an d a numbe r o f peculiaritie s i n t h e i r inflections ,
which, however , s t i l l agre e i n t h e mai n wit h t h e aforemen -
tioned wor d c l a s s e s an d wit h t h o s e o f Slavic 169 a
s e p a r a t e a r t i c l e i s a l s o foun d here , correspondin g t o t h e
German an d Gree k definit e a r t i c l e . Th e numeral s a r e a l l
1 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

inflected her e a l s o a s i n t h e Slavi c languages .


Verbs onl y hav e t h e activ e for m an d participle s o r
adjectival form s o f t h e passive , j u s t a s t h e Slavi c an d
Germanic languages however , mor e participle s a r e foun d
here. Mood s a r e t h e usua l 5 , bu t tense s a r e i n th e
declarative mood , viz . present , futur e an d p a s t perfect.) ,
plus ye t anothe r p a s t tens e denotin g t h a t on e use d t o for m
or underg o something , whic h correspond s approximatel y t o
t h e Russia n i t e r a t i v e i n c o n t r a s t , t h e conditional ,
imperative an d impersona l mood s onl y hav e on e indefinit e
tense for m each , an d t h e l a s t , i n addition , a s o - c a l l e d
supine, whic h appear s merel y t o b e a modificatio n o f i t s
o t h e r for m an d t h u s migh t b e calle d t h e secondar y form .
The verbs , too , hav e a s e p a r a t e dual , bu t o f t h e t h r e e
persons t h e t h i r d i s identica l i n a l l numbers . Ruhig quite
c o r r e c t l y fixe s t h e numbe r o f conjugation s a t two , whic h
ought, however , mos t c o r r e c t l y t o b e deal t wit h i n t h e
reverse o r d e r f i r s t t h e on e havin g a vowe l befor e t h e
ending verb a pura), next t h e on e wit h a consonan t impura),
which a l s o f a l l s int o severa l c l a s s e s , althoug h Ruhig does
not see m t o hav e bee n a w a r e o f it a l l t h e s e en d i n in
t h e present f u r t h e r , t h e r e a r e som e l e s s r e g u l a r one s wit h
t h e endin g i T h i s divisio n ca n b e see n i n outlin e fro m t h e
following example s

. Th
e pur e v e r b s
future p a s t impers.
a) s a seek) s s s oa s ti
b) li love ) l s l a l ti
c) lai a hold) lai s lai ia lai ti

1 0 . The impur e v e r b s
future p a s t impers, m .
a) la sin praise) la sis la sina la s nti
b) rise ) s a ti
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 5

c) ert hew) irs irta irsti


d) g run) gs gia gti

These a r e t h e mos t important actually, on e migh t ye t


add a f o u r t h c l a s s t o t h e f i r s t conjugation , suc h a s d )
g nda I tempt ) g ndis g nd ia g nditi t h e r e ar e als o
many subdivision s o f t h e second , e.g . thos e i n an d
and o t h e r s . Thos e i n i ma y b e o f variou s c l a s s e s o f bot h
conjugations, suc h a s g i sleep) g ti d i put ,
lay) d ti d i give) d ti ei i go ) eiti g i run, t h e
same a s g gti and t h e like . nyon e wil l easil y se e
t h a t t h i s correspond s exactl y t o t h e Gree k verb s i n and
, t h e futur e a l s o end s mos t frequentl y i n in Greek ,
they a l s o correspon d r a t h e r closel y t o t h e Slavi c v e r b s i n
and an d i n t h e Gothi c language s a t l e a s t t h e mai n
division i s t h e same . Th e indefinit e moo d i n ti and t h e
secondary for m i n t may b e compare d t o t h e Russia n an d
appish endin g t , an d t o t h e on e innis h conjugatio n i n ta or
da bu t o n t h e o t h e r han d a r e a l s o undoubtedl y connecte d
with t h e ati n supin e i n t rn an d t and perhap s t h e
riental infinitive s i n o doub t the y a r e a c t u a l l y cas e
forms fro m a n ol d noun fo r j u s t a s participle s a r e a kin d
of adjectives , derive d fro m verbs , infinitive s a r e a kin d o f
derived nouns i n t h i s wa y the y a r e a l s o frequentl y use d i n
t h e rienta l languages , i n Gree k an d atin , 1 1 i n
Icelandic, German , English , a s wel l a s i n innish , wher e
several cas e form s o f infinitive s a r e found , whic h hav e bee n
given t h e nam e o f gerundia. Supposing i t i s no t foun d t o b e
improper t h a t I hav e calle d t h e participle s adjectiva l form s
i.e. dependen t adjectives) , t h e r i g h t thin g t o d o perhap s
would b e t o cal l supine s no inal or s i.e . dependen t
nouns) however , t h e nam e make s n o difference , i f onl y
t h e r e i s agreemen t concernin g t h e m a t t e r itself .
Reflexive v e r b s a r e forme d b y addin g si o r s t o t h e en d o f
a l l persons , b y insertin g i t betwee n t h a t an d t h e mai n word ,
1 6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

and sometime s additionall y attachin g i t t o t h e end , e.g .


lai a s' ' hold myself , fro m lai a a si lin s in o r
asilin s in s' ' am pleased ' fro m alin s in ' please'.
This si o r s i s take n fro m t h e reflexiv e pronou n o f t h e
t h i r d perso n an d correspond s t o t h e reflexiv e v e r b s i n
Russian.
The etti c languages , lik e t h e classical , t h e Slavi c an d
t h e Gothic , a l s o hav e a g r e a t numbe r o f derivativ e w o r d s ,
but especiall y fro m noun s an d adjectives , an d r e l a t i v e l y fe w
from v e r b s .
The syste m foun d i n t h i s c l a s s o f language s i s t h u s
mostly a s i f t h e opposit e o f t h e languag e s t r u c t u r e o f
innic, an d o n t h e o t h e r han d sho w suc h agreemen t wit h t h a t
of Greek , t h a t I j u s t canno t comprehen d ho w an y h i s t o r i a n
a s studious , unprejudiced , an d knowledgeabl e i n languag e a s
Thunmann coul d tak e i t t o b e a mixtur e o f innish , Slavi c
and Gothi c and , i n turn , p . ) contemptuousl y rejec t t h e
opinion t h a t i t wa s descende d fro m Greek . I t i s obviou s
t h a t t h e s i m i l a r i t i e s betwee n inni c an d etti c mus t solel y
be ascribe d t o blendin g o r a t an y r a t e t o a n extremel y
remote kinship , an d t h e inni c people s ma y j u s t a s wel l hav e
mingled wit h t h e etti c an d borrowe d fro m them , a s t h e
o t h e r wa y around i n a l l likelihood , bot h people s have ,
reciprocally, borrowe d somethin g fro m t h e o t h e r , bu t s u r e l y
the 1 2 inni c f a r mor e tha n t h e ettic amon g th e
languages o f t h e l a t t e r , t h a t o f t h e e t t s prope r i s t h e on e
most mixe d wit h innic , amon g t h o s e o f t h e former , t h a t o f
t h e app s t h e on e mos t mixe d wit h ettic . T h i s blendin g
must, then , presumabl y hav e take n plac e befor e t h e app s
migrated int o Scandinavia fo r sinc e t h a t tim e the y hav e
constantly bee n widel y s e p a r a t e d fro m t h e e t t s , an d t h i s
c o r r o b o r a t e s wha t wa s sai d abov e concernin g t h e g r e a t
antiquity an d independenc e o f t h e etti c t r i b e . collectio n
of 11 0 w o r d s commo n t o t h e inni c an d etti c language s i s
given b y Thunman n o n p . 8 8 an d followin g pages , bu t a
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1

number o f thos e a r e a l s o Gothic , an d som e hav e obviousl y


come int o etti c an d innis h fro m German , suc h a s
a ats 'office', fro m t li nga ' a sling', fro m linge
is collection , prio r t o t h a t , o f abou t 9 0 w o r d s whic h
correspond i n t h e etti c an d Gothi c languages , coul d hav e
been f a r l a r g e r , ha d h e no t decide d o n a fals e r u l e b y whic h
t o proceed . a e es ir eset ge a t das o
ein ettis es ort it eine andern in irgend einer
la is en ra e erein t a enn die gr s te
a rs einli eit r die ot is e oder a die innis e
re i es do lie er a s ener ra e als a s diesen
erleiten sse ut w e hav e j u s t see n t h a t t h e Slavi c
languages ha d a basi c connectio n wit h t h e Gothi c whic h wa s
neither foun d i n t h e elti c o r inni c t o an y considerabl e
degree accordingly , i t ma y ver y wel l b e t r u e t h a t t h e sam e
ettic w o r d s resembl e bot h Gothi c an d Slavi c w o r d s fo r i t
i s quit e possibl e t h a t bot h t h e s e languages , bein g s o closel y
r e l a t e d , ma y hav e a commo n source , and , a f t e r the y
originated fro m i t , hav e becom e differen t t o t h a t extent
nor i s i t unlikel y t h a t t h e Gothi c an d especiall y t h e Slavi c
peoples ma y hav e borrowe d a g r e a t dea l fro m t h e ettic
for no w t h a t th e assumptio n o f t h e i r emergenc e t h r o u g h
some 1 blendin g o f t h e s e h a s bee n prove d unfounded ,
t h e r e i s n o likelihoo d t h a t t h e e t t s shoul d hav e borrowe d
more fro m a l l o t h e r s tha n o t h e r s fro m them , t h e o t h e r wa y
around. I f on e compare s t h e system , a s describe d above , o f
t h e etti c language s wit h t h e Slavi c an d Gothi c languages ,
one wil l observ e t h a t p r a c t i c a l l y everythin g i n whic h the y
mutually agree , t h e etti c c l a s s o f language s s h a r e s wit h
them also , an d t h a t , besides , i t h a s man y s i m i l a r i t i e s t o
both, whic h t h e tw o o f the m d o no t hav e t o eac h other
perhaps, however , mor e t o t h e Gothi c an d classica l language s
grammatically, mor e t o t h e Slavi c language s lexically . ut ,
however g r e a t th e s i m i l a r i t y o n bot h sides , i t i s quit e
obvious t h a t t h e etti c language s canno t hav e sprun g fro m
1 8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

t h e Slavi c an d Gothic , becaus e t h e i r syste m i s s o muc h mor e


complex bot h t h e Slavi c an d t h e Gothi c lac k t h e dua l an d
t h e futur e for m o f verbs , a s wel l a s a numbe r o f t h e
participles an d t h e like how , then , shoul d t h i s emerg e b y a
blending o f thos e language s I t woul d b e muc h mor e
reasonable t o assum e t h e Slavi c an d Gothi c languag e c l a s s e s
t o hav e sprun g fro m t h e ettic however , t h i s doe s no t
appear ver y s a t i s f a c t o r y either , sinc e i t lack s t h e neuter ,
which bot h o f thos e have , an d h a s severa l o t h e r point s o f
divergence fro m those i t i s probabl y mor e c o r r e c t t o
assume i t t o b e a s e p a r a t e t r i b e , closel y r e l a t e d t o t h e
Slavic, bu t s t i l l mor e closel y r e l a t e d t o t h e Gothic , wit h
which i t must , undoubtedly , hav e i t s r o o t s i n common , an d
with i t s mor e comple x system , b e close r t o t h e r o o t . Thu s
we hav e no w take n a n e s s e n t i a l an d significan t s t e p t o w a r d s
finding t h e sourc e o f l d orse . T h a t t h e r e i s , i n fact ,
such g r e a t s i m i l a r i t y t o Gothi c languages , anybod y
accustomed t o suc h observation s wil l r e a d i l y perceive , i f h e
compares e.g . t h e s t r u c t u r e o f t h e etti c an d t h e Moeso -
gothic languages , man y w o r d s an d form s bein g exactl y t h e
same, suc h a s s n s ' a son ' accus, s n gen . 1 I s na s
and t h e like . I t woul d tak e u s to o f a r t o s e t t h i s f o r t h i n
detail here I s h a l l defe r i t an d h u r r y t o t h e ver y source ,
where t h a t wil l b e necessar y fo r t h e purpos e o f givin g muc h
information, an d wher e I woul d o t h e r w i s e hav e t o repea t i t .
ut i f w e tak e a loo k a t e a r l y h i s t o r y havin g no w
freed ourselve s fro m t h e fals e prejudic e t h a t t h e etti c
t r i b e emerge d a s l a t e a s t h e 5 . o r 6 . centur y t h r o u g h
blending), w e s h a l l fin d i t mos t plausibl e t h a t the y
inhabited t h e interior , c e n t r a l region s o f Russi a an d olan d
in t h e e a r l i e s t times . T h i s explain s a t t h e sam e time , wh y
they a r e no t mentione d b y t h e variou s a u t h o r s unti l quit e
l a t e , wherea s o t h e r people s a r e reporte d i n t h e i r countries ,
into whic h the y ha d no t ye t migrated , an d a l s o wh y the y
a r e a s Thunman n observes ) s o ignoran t of , an d disincline d
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 9

t o w a r d s , maritim e m a t t e r s , which , i n t h e i r t r i b a l s e a t i n t h e
center o f a g r e a t continent , the y coul d no t possibl y b e
accustomed to a fac t whic h seem s completel y inconveivable ,
if the y a r e assume d t o hav e originate d a t t h e mout h o f t h e
Vistula an d alon g t h e s h o r e s o f t h e alti c Se a t h r o u g h
blending o f inns , Goths , an d Slavs , t h e tw o forme r o f
which people s hav e bee n mos t accustome d t o t h e se a fro m
time immemorial . efor e the y emerg e i n h i s t o r y , then , the y
probably bordere d d i r e c t l y o n t h e Vid s th e Gepids ) t o t h e
Southeast, an d t h e exodu s o f t h e l a t t e r gav e the m a n
opportunity t o invad e ithuani a an d r u s s i a an d expe l t h e
remains o f th e Gothi c people s s t i l l lef t t h e r e . Thes e Gothi c
peoples inhabitin g t h e Souther n coas t o f t h e alti c Sea ,
were, a s sai d before , Gothonians , Guttonians , Vits,
urgundians, Rugians , and t h e like , an d fro m her e Thunman n
assumes t h a t t h e G o t h s Eas t G o t h s an d es t Goths )
migrated t o t h e region s mor e t o t h e Sout h - whic h seem s
unlikely, 1 5 judgin g fro m t h e numbe r an d powe r o f these ,
the real , Goths . I thin k i t i s mor e plausibl e t h a t the y
were t h e mai n stock , o f whic h t h o s e t o t h e ort h wer e a
branch an d i f w e conside r Scandinavia , s i t u a t e d immediatel y
opposite, w e fin d t h e r e f i r s t otland Danis h lland the n
e stra an d estra a tland Danis h otland o r lland an d
next tland or tland Dan . lland a s wel l a s
org ndar l r orn ol and gen t o t h e South , an d t h u s
we understan d wher e th e Gothi c people s fro m alon g t h e
Southern s h o r e s o f t h e alti c Se a went , whe n e t t s an d
Slavs cam e in . I n t h i s plac e I mus t ye t mentio n t h a t
tland or tland i s calle d itland b y t h e ancients , which ,
a s Thunman n h a s show n p . ) i s merel y a differen t
pronunciation o f t h e sam e name , abou t a s Swedis h s old
Dan. si no w s li s ol d Dan . l s an d man y o t h e r s ,
rench rod ire Engl. rod e read p r o d j u s ' ) , r . s ite
Engl. s it rea d s j u t ' ) i n t h i s wa y t h e soun d o f ha s
been interchange d wit h i o r i o r even i n man y instances .
150 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

The Vits or J u t e s , wh o wer e expose d t o t h e f i r s t a t t a c k b y


t h e e t t s , wer e probabl y t h e f i r s t , one s t o depart , migratin g
perhaps throug h th e Gothi c kingdo m i n Swede n int o Jutland
l a t e r t h e Guttonian s an d Gothonians . u t i n whateve r o r d e r
they cam e in , a l l t h i s ma y serv e u s t o explai n ho w i t i s
t h a t Reidgotalan d i s mentione d i n ou r Saga r lon g a f t e r t h e
exodus o f Guttonian s an d Gothonians , an d ho w t h e nam e
ddai can s t i l l b e e x t a n t i n thes e regions , bein g applie d
scornfully b y a l l t h e people s livin g t h e r e abou t eac h o t h e r ,
without an y o f the m acknowledgin g it fo r the y wer e a l l
enemies an d p u r s u e r s o f t h e Guttonians , an d a s the y wer e
a l s o superio r t o the m an d victorious , th e sam e reaso n
existed fo r t h a t nam e t o becom e contemptibl e t o them , a s
t h e nam e inn- ap p t o us bu t a f t e r t h e r e a l Gudda i ha d
departed 1 6 an d disappeared , nobod y kne w t o who m i t
should apply , bu t a l l use d i t a g a i n s t eac h o t h e r mutuall y a s
an invective . ow , whe n w e ad d t o t h i s t h e mor e familia r
migration int o Scandinavi a o f di n fro m i d in i la
i.e. Scythia ) a t t h e Tanais , fro m whic h i d i.e. Swede n
proper, qvas i th e ne w Scythia ) receive d i t s nam e - w e begi n
t o realiz e t h a t i n t h e e a r l i e s t time s t h e Gothi c people s
undoubtedly constitute d on e continuou s chai n fro m t h e lac k
Sea an d Tanai s t o t h e ort h Sea , t h e alti c Se a an d t h e
Vistula, bu t t h a t the y wer e l a t e r disperse d b y t h e i r ow n
migrations an d thos e o f t h e etti c an d Slavi c t r i b e s , t h e
o r t h e a s t e r n p a r t bein g force d n o r t h w a r d an d t o w a r d s t h e
altic Se a int o Scandinavia , an d t h a t the y especiall y thes e
l a t e r s o - c a l l e d ordi c peoples ) hav e alway s bee n immediat e
neighbors o f t h e etti c t r i b e , whethe r o r no t on e w a n t s t o
assume t h a t th e l a t t e r migrate d fro m region s mor e t o t h e
South, e.g . fro m Dacia, t o t h o s e i n t h e orth , i n whic h w e
found the m i n th e vicinit y o f t h e Gepids . ere , then , w e
have foun d t h e t r i b a l s e a t o f t h e ordi c peoples , whic h i s
certain t o ai d u s considerabl y i n trackin g dow n t h e sourc e o f
t h e language . I f th e etti c language s wer e availabl e t o u s
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 151

from times a s remot e a s t h e Gothic, i t might not b e entirely


unreasonable t o derive t h e l a t t e r from t h e former, an d
consider t h e Gothic t r i b e t o hav e i t s origi n i n t h e ettic
however, t h i s i s contradicte d p a r t l y b y t h e i r d i s p a r i t y , t h e
Gothic t r i b e bein g l a r g e r b y far , p a r t l y a l s o by t h e
considerable c o n t r a s t betwee n th e e n t i r e outer for m an d
sound o f these languages, a s well a s a numbe r o f d i s s i m i -
l a r i t i e s i n t h e i r s y s t e m and vocabulary . or h a s ithuanian
been considere d a n origina l language , r a t h e r t h e b e s t e x p e r t s
assume t h a t i t h a s i t s origi n i n Gree k as die
itta is e ra e on der rie is en ersta e ist
ni t so n t ig e eisen als er l ren s a y s Ruhi g i n
his etra t ng der itta is en ra e 1 5. n th e
o t h e r hand, i t h a s a l s o bee n 1 noticed a long tim e ago
a l r e a d y t h a t t h e r e i s a remarkabl e kinshi p between Gree k
and atin , o r t h e s o - c a l l e d c l a s s i c a l languages, an d t h e
Germanic languages , especially o w German, and t h i s alon e
must give u s a s t r o n g suspicion t h a t Gree k i s t h e source o f
the l d or se o r Icelandi c language however , i n o r d e r not
t o l e t prejudic e guide any o f our s t e p s , w e s h a l l procee d
according t o t h e pla n originall y conceived .

. Thracian

aving no w considere d t h e t h r e e E a s t e r n languag e


classes innic, whic h had l i t t l e o r n o connectio n wit h
Icelandic, Slavic, which was closel y r e l a t e d , an d ettic,
which seeme d s t i l l closer, w e find, t o t h e South , t h e
Romance language class and Modern Greek. o an e is
widely extended, Italian, Spanish, ortuguese, and rench all
belonging t o it , bu t a l l these languages a r e mor e notabl e fo r
t h e i r refinement , melodiousnes s and abundan t l i t e r a t u r e tha n
for g r e a t age an d o r i g i n a l i t y . I t i s well-know n t h a t the y
have a l l arise n a f t e r th e f a l l o f t h e Roma n Empire , an d a
152 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

long tim e a f t e r t h a t , whe n t h e confusio n cause d i n t h e ol d


atin b y t h e invadin g Gothic people s wa s beginning t o
subside - but in suc h a wa y t h a t t h e ol d substanc e
completely got t h e uppe r han d and merel y a r r a n g e d itsel f i n
a ne w form. ccordingly, t h e s e languages canno t possibl y
contain t h e sourc e o f t h e Gothic languages , these bein g muc h
older, and th e sam e may b e applied t o Moder n Greek but,
a s I said before , t h e Romanc e language s a r e descended fro m
atin, an d t h e Mode m Gree k from ancien t Greek,
or 1 8 Greek proper we come , then , nex t t o
t h e tw o ol d an d j u s t l y famou s peoples , t h e Greek s an d t h e
Romans.
del ng h a s prove d in detai l an d wit h care in h i s
it ridates t h a t a l l t h e people s extendin g from t h e r i v e r
alys i n si a Minor , and f a r an d wide t o t h e ort h an d
est a s fa r a s annonia , wher e t h e Germanic t r i b e began,
should b e groupe d int o on e single t r i b e whic h h e c a l l s t h e
T h r a c o - e l a s g o - G r e c o - a t i n , but which I thin k w e migh t
content ourselves wit h calling , more briefly , t h e ra ian
from i t s center , o r else t h e r gian whic h enina has
adopted. ithi n t h i s g r e a t c l a s s o f people s t h e Greeks ,
then, merel y constitute d a singl e p a r t . I t a l y appear s t o
have receive d he r i n h a b i t a n t s in t h e orther n regio n from
annonia and Germania i t i s a h i s t o r i c a l fact t h a t
numerous Gree k s e t t l e r s occupie d t h e Souther n an d middl e
region i t i s t r u e t h a t people s fro m Gaul, of t h e Gelti c
t r i b e , hav e a l s o hel d portions o f orther n I t a l y fo r some
time, but they see m t o have ha d bu t l i t t l e influenc e o n t h e
language, whic h almost entirel y issue d fro m t h e cit y o f
Rome. enne an d o t h e r s hav e a l s o proved incontrovertibl y
from the languag e itsel f - both i t s system an d vocabulary -
t h a t ati n h a s sprung from Greek fo r t h e most p a r t ,
especially from t h e eolic an d Dori c dialects . ccordingly ,
we ca n conside r ati n a s belongin g t o t h e g r e a t Thracia n
language c l a s s , o f which , however , w e kno w onl y t h e s e tw o
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 15

branches, Gree k an d atin , whic h a r e mutuall y r e l a t e d abou t


a s t h e ordi c an d Germani c languages . Thu s th e natural
course o f ou r investigatio n h a s taken us back t o Greek,
which was given a s t h e sourc e o f ithuanian , an d whic h we ,
accordingly, suspecte d o f bein g t h a t o f Icelandi c also.
enina too , makes t h i s assumptio n i n h i s brief 1 9 paper
s r l'origine de la lang e lle ande i n t h e oires de
erlin fo r 1 8 although i t certainl y canno t b e adequatel y
proved in 8 pages, nor ca n a c t u a l l y b e sai d abou t German,
which i s a ne w languag e an d h i s t o r i c a l l y e s t a b l i s h e d t o hav e
sprung form t h e ol d Saxon , ranconian, etc. Th e same
applies t o derivin g Danis h fro m Greek an d atin , a s e.g .
on l eo olitan s st d h a s attempte d in a n extensiv e
manuscript i n folio , whic h h e c a l l s t ena i ri a el
i ria gr a nonn s a a e ero ad ini lata whic h -
despite t h e majo r e r r o r j u s t r e f e r r e d t o an d many specific
a b s u r d i t i e s - s t i l l s e r v e s t o suppor t ou r presumption .
ow i f w e ourselve s make a renewe d compariso n o f t h e
Thracian languag e c l a s s o f whos e mai n ste m an d s u b s i d i a r y
branch w e find s o many very ancient , invaluabl e remain s s t i l l
e x t a n t , with t h e Gothi c and ithuania n c l a s s a s r e g a r d s
system an d individual w o r d s , t h e thoroug h investigato r
notices, nor merely a fe w rando m w o r d s resemblin g eac h
o t h e r somewha t in for m an d meaning, bu t such multitude o f
s i m i l a r i t i e s t h a t r u l e s fo r t h e s h i f t s of l e t t e r s ca n be
e x t r a c t e d , an d p r a c t i c a l l y t h e e n t i r e languag e s t r u c t u r e
proved t o be t h e sam e in both , o r r a t h e r , t h a t o f Gothic
can b e foun d a l s o in and derive d fro m t h a t o f Thracian , b y
means o f t h a t o f ithuania n - despit e t h e fac t t h a t on e o f
t h e s e language c l a s s e s ma y well hav e l o s t much of w h a t t h e
o t h e r h a s preserved t h a t on e o f the m ma y hav e preserve d
t h e s i m i l a r i t y t o wha t i s common i n t h e o t h e r i n j u s t a fe w
cases or onl y i n a fe w dialects an d t h a t eac h o f the m ma y
s e p a r a t e l y hav e borrowe d fro m foreig n languag e c l a s s e s
around them , a s w e sa w i n t h e cas e of t h e ordi c c l a s s ,
15 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

which h a s borrowe d muc h from t h e innic c l a s s - and Gree k


j u s t a s certainl y h a s adopted a g r e a t dea l fro m t h e rienta l
180 class. e shoul d no t b e s u r p r i s e d t o find
dissimilarity in for m and e x t e r n a l appearanc e betwee n
Icelandic and t h e Thracia n languages , eve n i n t h e case of
actual minut e internal agreement , considerin g t h a t a l l whic h
we hav e lef t o f t h e Thracia n c l a s s a r e t h e two southernmos t
languages, i.e . t h e one s s e p a r a t e d t h e very f a r t h e s t from t h e
ordic languages , Thracia n prope r an d a l l orther n languag e
of t h i s c l a s s havin g bee n l o s t completely .
i r s t l y , pronunciatio n an d t h e e n t i r e soun d o f Gree k
and Icelandi c appea r t o agre e i n t h e extreme , j u s t a s vowels ,
diphthongs, an d consonants , whe n pronounced c o r r e c t l y , a r e
about t h e same in bot h languages . hat , then , i s t h e
c o r r e c t pronunciation o f Gree k t h a t i s t h e question
undoubtedly asked here, t h a t languag e havin g bee n extinc t
for such a lon g time fo r t h e pronuciation o f Icelandi c i s
well-known, t h e languag e bein g s t i l l alive . I n order t o
e s t a b l i s h t h e pronunciatio n o f Gree k t o som e extent , allo w
me f i r s t briefl y t o describ e t h a t o f Moesogothic , whic h i s
going t o b e important a l s o i n o r d e r t o read c o r r e c t l y t h e
Moesogothic w o r d s t o b e mentione d i n t h e following . Th e
Moesogothic bishop lfilas , wh o introduced alphabeti c w r i t i n g
t o h i s people, modeled i t on t h a t o f Gree k i n p a r t i c u l a r
a l l w e hav e i n t h i s languag e a r e fragment s o f his
t r a n s l a t i o n of t h e e w Testament w e ma y infe r t h e
pronunciation, o r wha t h e w a n t s t h e l e t t e r s t o denote, from
t h e Gree k an d ebre w name s occurrin g t h e r e , a s well a s
from t h e agreemen t o f t h e languag e wit h Icelandic . is
l e t t e r s resemble thos e of Gree k most, t h u s i t appear s bot h
most c o r r e c t g an d mos t practica l t o replace the m with t h e
Greek l e t t e r s fo r i f w e choos e ati n l e t t e r s , t h e r e will be
a t l e a s t four which canno t b e represente d excep t b y groupin g
two s i g n s t o g e t h e r . Th e o r d e r an d numer ical valu e of t h e
l e t t e r s a l s o correspond t o t h o s e o f Greek . ccordingly ,I
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 155

represent t h e alphabet a s follow s and in


diphthongs sof t s 181 or renc h
and Moder n Gree k yod) ,
and whe n i t i s v) , hv), f
these, , lik e t h e correspondin g sig n i n Greek , h a s numerica l
value only an d neve r occur s connecte d wit h w o r d s t h u s
i s t h e onl y l e t t e r I hav e ha d t o borrow from atin. ha s
t h e same sound a s in Gree k an d Icelandi c an d o t h e r
languages, but ax means hig h e i n est o r i n re j u s t
a s a u high o i n or o r aa i n aa en i.e . t h e Icelandi c e an d
o withou t t h e accent , an d t h e Gree k an d o e.g .
read G nna), Icel. lesari Dan. ser
praaf t s, Icel. ord Dan. et rd read
vaard, abou t a s Engl. ord n t h e o t h e r hand , t h e
Icelandic an d , Greek a x an d au , a r e denote d b y
The Gree k an d a s well a s t h e Icelandi c ei an d ar e
represented b y an d but t h e lon g b ya si n
read i l a t u s ) , Icel. gri a t h e simpl e x ,
in c o n t r a s t , corresponds t o Icelandi c i withou t t h e accent ,
e.g. in impf .conj. Icel. gri i s i m i l a r l y long , Greek ou
i s represente d b y ou, bu t s h o r t , Gree k u , Germa n by u ,
e.g. Icel. di r Dan. d and others. f the
consonants was read ng as in Greek, as n e.g.
Icel. en a an d in t h e middl e o f w o r d s somewha t
h a r d e r , almos t a s e.g . en ti Germ, da te 8
corresponds t o Gree k 8 an d Icelandi c I t i s a m a t t e r of
course t h a t , following dialec t s h i f t s , o t h e r l e t t e r s o f
Moesogothic an d Icelandi c a r e a l s o foun d t o correspond t o
each other , i n whic h cases a differen t sound occurred, bu t
any discriminatin g observer ca n easily distinguis h betwee n
t h o s e an d t h e one s whic h mus t hav e t h e sam e soun d i n
accordance wit h t h e n a t u r e of bot h languages , an d i s
convinced o f t h e c o r r e c t n e s s b y t h e wa y i n whic h t h e Gree k
names a r e represented . 182 I t woul d b e inappropriat e t o
s e t t h i s f o r t h i n more d e t a i l in t h i s place from w h a t w a s
156 O R I G I N OF THE OLD NORSE L A N G U A G E

said above, it will be reasonably understood t h a t (repeating


it once more in t h e form of a t a b l e ) Moesogothic

corresponds to Icel. a Grreek


ai - ae
- - a
- - - e -
- - -
- - - i -
- - - -
- - - -
- - - o -
- - - -
- - - - ,
to which one may s t i l l add
that
perhaps is t h e old au -
i - - - - - - ey - oi.

Concerning this, see what was said above about the


Icelandic pronunciation on p. 55.

Thus being able, by means of Moesogothic, to e s t a b l i s h


a connection and comparison of the ancient Greek
pronunciation with a still living and very ancient language,
which, from time immemorial, has changed infinitely little,
viz. Icelandic, we a r e by and l a r g e able to know for c e r t a i n
what it was like, and out conviction in this respect is
strengthened when we find that this agrees most closely
with what we may learn from an unprejudiced [183]
comparison with Latin and w i t h t h e Oriental languages (esp.
by means of Origines' Hexapla); except t h a t this alone is
not so certain or definite, since both Hebrew and Latin
became extinct and t h e i r c o r r e c t pronunciation f o r g o t t e n long
before t h a t fate befell Greek. So it will be seen t h a t t h e
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 157

Erasmic or usua l pronunciation , wit h a fe w modifications , i s


t h e r i g h t one , bu t t h a t , i n lfilas' time i t bega n t o mov e
into t h e presen t Moder n Gree k pronunciation . Th e
modifications o f th e usua l pronunciatio n whic h a r e especiall y
t o b e note d a r e i r s t an d foremost , t h a t th e sam e l e t t e r
and diphthon g shoul d i n a l l case s b e give n t h e sam e
pronunciation, withou t an y r e g a r d o f t h e accent s th e purpos e
of thes e havin g merel y bee n t o indicat e t h e ne w pronunciatio n
in l a t e r times , withou t changin g t h e ol d o r t h o g r a p h y ) i.e. ,
and o shoul d neve r b e give n t h e dee p an d broa d sound , a s
and , even thoug h a n accen t i s foun d ove r them , o r
though the y hav e t o b e emphasize d becaus e o f th e n a t u r e o f
t h e word e.g . i s no t rea d Sofi a no r S fia, bu t
approximately Saafe a o r Soffea i s no t rea d t but
approximately t e o r t i , with t h e sam e soun d a s t h e Danis h
i and a s t h e masculin e . ext, mus t definitel y b e
read a s e.g. i n id tie an d t h e like) , i.e . a s Dan . s
which i s no t onl y apparen t fro m t h e compariso n wit h
Moesogothic an d Icelandic , bu t a l s o fro m atin , wher e i t i s
almost invariabl y w r i t t e n wit h a n i , e.g .
, iri s l s ari s o r rg s and
numerous o t h e r s . he n i t i s replace d b y a lon g e i n a few
w o r d s , t h a t wa s simpl y a dialec t pronunciation , whic h i s
a l s o foun d i n Doric , o f puttin g lon g ) instead o f lon g
), a s i n ed a I t i s a l s o obviou s fro m Gree k
itself t h a t t h i s i s so otherwise , w e upse t th e entir e vowe l
system, sinc e w e en d u p wit h diphthong s 18
corresponding t o e , viz . , an d , and none , i n turn , t o
but i f w e pronounc e a s , w e ge t th e usua l tw o
corresponding t o and , j u s t a s t o o t h e tw o
and ox , an d t o t h e tw o an d t o , on t h e o t h e r
hand, , just a s t o , which l a t t e r woul d otherwis e
a l s o hav e t o b e rea d ov , i f i s t o b e rea d a s ej fo r t h e
representation i s completel y analogous . he n i s rea d a s
, w e hav e a n explanatio n o f t h e frequen t a l t e r n a t i o n o f
158 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

158 RIGI T E D RS E G G E
and e.g . and , and ,
why, eve n i n prope r names , suc h a s an d , and
many o t h e r s t h e sam e a l t e r n a t i o n i s foun d i n Moesogothic ,
especially i n th e ending , wher e t h e soun d coul d no t b e
distinguished s o precisely , a s i n and
teacher, whil e i t woul d o t h e r w i s e see m inexplicable . inally ,
i t i s a l s o see n fro m t h e inne r essenc e an d analog y o f t h e
language, fo r wher e o becomes , invariably become s
e.g. , - , o ,
but t h a t i s ou r h a s neve r bee n disputed . f th e
consonants, t h e onl y on e t o b e note d i s , which wa s
pronounced s d b y t h e ncients , whic h i s see n quit e clearl y
from t h e fac t t h a t i t make s positsi o i n t h e poets , an d t h a t
i t wa s actuall y w r i t t e n in Doric , wher e t h e doubl e l e t t e r s
had no t be n adopted t h e objectio n o f som e discriminatin g
expert t h a t i t i s sometime s replace d b y in t h e eolian s
i s o f n o avail fo r i n t h a t sam e dialec t i s replace d b y
and by - accordingly , i t wa s a dialec t pronunciatio n
and n o longe r t h e sam e sound . was t h e h a r d Englis h t
and t h e Icelandi c , bu t a c t u a l l y r a t h e r t h e l a t t e r , whos e
sound i t s t i l l h a s t h e differenc e betwee n t h a t soun d an d
that o f t i n Englis h being , i n fact , ver y insignificant .
was t h e Germa n whic h i s foun d a l s o i n Moesogothi c an d
t h e Slavi c languages .
ow, upo n comparin g t h e genuin e pronunciatio n o f Gree k
a s w e hav e t h u s briefl y 185 e s t a b l i s h e d i t , wit h t h a t o f
Icelandic, t h e clai m mad e abov e wil l h a r d l y b e foun d t o hav e
been exaggerated . I t wil l b e see n t h a t t h e Gree k

a i s t h e Icel . a i s t h e Icel .
au - - - -- - g
ax - - - --- d
e sd) - - ol d st)
n- - - ei i n ein
one, una ) -- - an d c )
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 15 9

- - old au - - - 1
o - - - o - - - m
- - - - - -

o - - - ey (Germ. eu), - - -

approx. the - - -
present au - - - ihr)
- - old i - - - s
- - - - - - t
- - - - - - f
- - Icel. approx. Icel. h
- - old y (Germ, ch)
is the Icel. ps.

ccordingly, ver y fe w sound s o f on e languag e a r e alie n


t o t h e other o f t h e vowel s onl y in Greek , whic h i s
lacking i n Icelandic , an d ye t probabl y occurre d i n t h e
e a r l i e s t ordic , a s wel l a s i n Icelandic, whic h i s lackin g
in t h e Souther n language s an d replace d b y long e) . f
t h e consonant s Icelandi c lack s , but i n t u r n h a s t h e s t r o n g
Moesogothi c an d German , however , a l s o hav e though
Greek lack s t h e Icelandi c o r f a t t h e en d o f 186 a
s y l l a b l e , t h e eoli c digamm a actuall y ha d t h e sam e sound
e.g. Icel. i read ajvi) , at. er Icel . r or
or Dan. ester Dan. ide I f du e r e g a r d
i s ha d t o t h e lon g distanc e i n tim e an d space , t h i s
agreement wil l certainl y appea r ver y goo d indeed sinc e
Icelandic i n t h i s respec t i s a s clos e t o Gree k a s t o atin , o r
closer fo r ati n lack s , , , and .
Much s i m i l a r i t y i s a l s o foun d betwee n t h e r u l e s o f
euphony o f t h e Icelandi c an d Gree k languages , althoug h
Icelandic i s somewha t rougher e.g . i n Icelandic , a t l e a s t i n
pronunciation, t a l w a y s an d d an d often a r e droppe d befor e
s, e.g . atn 'water') , i n t h e genitiv e atns o r at i s rea d
vas), from itr come s i a fro m g dr gi a Greek
for , for a r e wel l known . u t Gree k euphon y
160 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

i s generall y fa r mor e p a r t i c u l a r tha n Icelandic , althoug h i t


h a s roug h point s o f i t s own , whic h Icelandi c woul d no t
permit. I t i s notabl e t h a t i t doe s no t t o l e r a t e an y o t h e r
consonant a t t h e en d o f w o r d s tha n , , , and in t h e
two w o r d s and if on e o f th e mut e l e t t e r s wa s t o
appear a t t h e end , i t i s dropped , o r els e i s added e.g .
for ) at. ali d fo r ) at. est fo r
) at. el t h i s doe s no t happe n i n Icelandic therefore ,
one mus t pa y carefu l a t t e n t i o n t o t h i s , whe n wantin g t o
compare thes e languages . Gree k an d ati n a l s o ofte n i n s e r t
an auxiliar y vowe l befor e t h e endin g i n o r d e r t o connec t i t
a l l t h e mor e easil y w i t h t h e mai n p a r t o f t h e word , bu t
Icelandic, bein g somewha t rougher , leave s ou t t h i s on e too ,
and r e n d e r s t h e ending s a s s h o r t an d simpl e a s possible
only wher e t h e endin g w a s monosyllabi c anyway , t h i s
auxiliary vowe l i s sometime s kep t befor e t h e ending suc h
as 18 Icel . ego egit Moesogothi c h a s kep t
both o f t h e s e e x t r i n s i c vowels , especiall y t h e on e befor e t h e
ending, muc h mor e frequentl y tha n Icelandic , an d ithuania n
h a s sometime s inserte d on e o f i t s ow n instea d o f droppin g
one o f t h e consonants e.g . - 'a tooth ' i s instea d o f o -
- , a s see n fro m t h e genitiv e - - , s i m i l a r l y ati n
dens fo r dent s a s see n fro m t h e genitiv e dent is bu t t h e
ithuanians, instea d o f droppin g t h i s t hav e inserte d a n i
and wit h the m t h e wor d i s dan tis in t h e nominative , i n abou t
t h e sam e wa y a s on e sai d bot h se s an d se es 'a fence' ) i n
atin. I n t h e ordi c languages , o n t h e o t h e r hand , t h e
ending wa s droppe d a l t o g e t h e r , i n o r d e r t o b e abl e t o
preserve t h e r o o t o f t h e wor d withou t hindrance t h u s i t i s
and i n Danish an d Swedish . ro m a disyllabi c endin g
Icelandic p r a c t i c a l l y a l w a y s d r o p s t h e l a s t s y l l a b l e fro m
an endin g consistin g o f a vowe l followe d b y on e o r mor e
consonants, thes e a r e mos t ofte n dropped , excep t i n t h e cas e
of s whic h mos t frequentl y become s r . Gree k and ati n
a r e e i t h e r completel y droppe d a t t h e en d o f w o r d s o r els e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 16 1

become a h a r d n Thi s consonan t probabl y wa s no t


pronounced ver y h a r d , i n ati n a t l e a s t , becaus e i t - abov e
a l l o t h e r consonant s - i s droppe d befor e a vowe l i n verse
perhaps i t ha d t h e soun d o f t h e renc h and t h e ortugues e
inale from whic h i t easil y coul d s h i f t int o bot h
extremes o f eithe r bein g droppe d o r becomin g h a r d n
vowel, eve n a lon g one , i s ofte n droppe d a t t h e en d o f
w o r d s , whe n i t i s merel y a n endin g an d no t relevan t t o t h e
essence o r r o o t for m o f t h e word .
ut innumerabl e change s occu r no t j u s t i n t h e endings ,
but i n t h e w o r d s themselve s a s well i t migh t no t b e a ba d
idea a t t h i s junctur e t o not e t h e mos t frequen t o f t h e s e
s h i f t s fro m Gree k an d ati n t o Icelandic .
188
ong a become s or as small) l g r
lo mater mdir.
ort a e o es er. tema, scabo eg skf,
Saccus seckur.
becomes o ona tower) org g sto
er ich koste.

f t h e mut e l e t t e r s t h e followin g s h i f t s a r e frequent ,


especially a t t h e beginnin g o f w o r d s

becomes as broad) lat r f l a t ) ,


fadir.
becomes as read t r s ) r r tego eg
pek, tu pu.
becomes meat) r dea d body) , orn
horn, cutis hud.
i s mostl y kept s p r o u t ) lad
s ort brunnr s r n bullare at bulla.
becomes t to tame ) ta r tame) , dign s
tiginn lofty , noble) .
becomes ona n o r in gena
162 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

kinn, akr.
becomes o Dan. g i er Icel . i r ero
eg ber.
becomes d d r so also in atin,
deus.
becomes g Dan. g der ega gr
ta, gall.
becomes s se sa an s e n Dan .
n.

ut ofte n the y a r e a l s o change d i n o t h e r ways e.g .


in t h e middl e an d a f t e r a vowe l become s g a s i n a er
read maker ) ager a og ta eo Icel . egi an d t become s
d, a s n pater fadir, frater brdir, an t e l e o r
which I r e f e r t o t h e observation s mad e o n pp . 8 ff .
In t h e followin g compariso n I s h a l l ofte n b e makin g
use o f ithuanian , applicatio n o f whic h I hav e pu t of f s o
far fo r t h i s reaso n l i s t i n g t h e s h i f t s whic h a r e specifi c
to, an d t h e mos t frequen t in , t h i s languag e wil l no t b e
superfluous e i t h e r . er e w e fin d t h a t
189
long becomes tolia a t l e a s t receive s
t e tone Tater Totrus, Daler dleris, l a
Jokubas.
s ort an e o e a: vis awis, r ta rtas,
sapnas rea suus sawas, tuus tawas, el
kordi kardas s or
becomes aro plough) ar s o s
zielju a ealo s corona karna, el pstur
pustas, el stlpi stulpas.
i are inserted before e and other vowels ien
Icel. ni ngi I yok e oxen ) ngo is at. is
e t diewas deus.
i s inserte d betwee n tw o vowels a is sa as
tawas, suwu, diewas.
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 16

ong i becomes as l Dan . en il gr as


Germ. rie e and, a s , onc e i t receive s t h e tone ,
such a s li fut. l s
becomes d die as - de i
dras s
, become l s Germ. al l as Icel.
et a step ) das il as g at . i s
Icel. ia res as unleavened) Icel . ers r
, become - l ingo Icel . ig
Icel . g s asis i a low),
ie a
', becom e s s is Germ . i te or
e s ars as ent rea d kentum ) s i tas Icel . al a
perish b y freezing ) s al ti freeze) , is
Germ. ert s irdis s es i
becomes s as talas Icel . stor r
s t r as an d man y o t h e r s .
become es er s is ras tri s
tri s tri is ielas Icel. idr forest , wood )
dis l fraud, t r i c k ) as lie) .
1 9 0 v, a r e droppe d befor e s , an d a t t h e end , wher e
i t i s replace d b y , ) e.g . anser Germ. ans asis
de die a ansa ansa asa asa

oth o f t h e language s whic h w e kno w o f t h e Thracia n


c l a s s , viz . Gree k an d atin , a r e s o famou s an d familia r t h a t
i t woul d b e superfluou s t o describ e the m her e i n detail
except t h a t , havin g bee n t r e a t e d b y differen t grammarians ,
consequently fro m differen t point s o f view , the y hav e
assumed a mor e d i s s i m i l a r appearanc e tha n the y actuall y
have. or , probably , hav e an y o f t h e s c h o l a r s workin g i n
t h i s fiel d know n t h e ol d r e l a t e d an d notabl e languages ,
ithuanian, Slavonic , Moesogothi c an d Icelandic , whic h a r e s o
closely r e l a t e d t o t h e Thracia n language s an d ma y contribut e
16 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

so infinitely muc h t o t h r o w l i g h t upo n them indeed , thes e


languages hav e so fa r been muc h l e s s studie d and remai n
much less familiar tha n th e Thracian languages
accordingly, one shoul d no t expec t t o find a highe r measur e
of correspondenc e between t h e grammatica l s y s t e m s assume d
for the m an d fo r t h e Thracia n language s tha n betwee n t h e
Thracian language s themselves . convincin g cas e was a l s o
made i n t h e precedin g fo r t h e considerable nee d for
improvement i n t h e gramma r o f a l l o f t h e s e languages, a s
f a r a s t h e syste m an d t h e wa y o f presentatio n a r e
concerned. Th e sam e goe s fo r t h e Thracia n o r s o - c a l l e d
ancient languages , an d i t i s no t t o b e expecte d t h a t h e wh o
merely know s on e o r a t most tw o o f thes e languages migh t
discover t h e syste m whic h i s r i g h t fo r a l l o f them , some -
thing whic h ca n b e foun d ou t onl y b y comparin g the m a l l .
In t h e preceding , I hav e briefl y indicate d a t eac h languag e
what classificatio n an d arrangemen t seemed t o m e m o s t
r i g h t , especiall y fo r t h e reaso n t h a t i t seeme d most fittin g
for a l l o f them 191 accordingly , I s h a l l d o t h e sam e
here, i n o r d e r t h a t I a t least describ e the m a l l t o t h e
r e a d e r fro m on e single point of vie w - somethin g whic h i s
absolutely necessar y i f w e wan t t o perceiv e an d judg e t h e
s i m i l a r i t y o r d i s s i m i l a r i t y betwee n them .
In bot h o f t h e Thracia n languages , then , noun s an d
adjectives hav e a n identica l inflection i n Gree k the y
distinguish t h r e e number s an d i n t h e singula r 5 cases, which
a r e b e s t ordere d a s follow s 1 ) t h e nominative, 2) t h e
vocative, m o s t l y j u s t a mino r v a r i a n t o f t h e nominative, )
t h e accusative , ) t h e genitive , an d 5 ) t h e dative on e might
have som e doub t a s t o whic h o f t h e l a t t e r tw o shoul d tak e
precedence, but judging b y t h e kinshi p betwee n t h e accusativ e
and t h e genitiv e i n t h e Slavi c languages, a s well a s t h e
n a t u r a l s i m i l a r i t y o f t h e ending s i n t h e etti c an d Thracian ,
t h e o r d e r give n her e appear s t o b e more c o r r e c t . Th e dual
h a s j u s t tw o cases one applie s t o t h e nominative, vocative
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 165

and accusativ e cases , t h e o t h e r t o t h e genitiv e an d t h e


dative. Th e p l u r a l h a s fou r cases , th e nominativ e an d voca -
tive bein g a l w a y s identica l i n t h i s instance . I n atin , o n
t h e o t h e r hand , t h e s e wor d c l a s s e s hav e si x case s i n t h e
singular, viz . i n additio n t o thos e o f Gree k 6 ) a n
instrumental ablative) , whic h i s , however , n o mor e tha n a
variant o f t h e dative . Th e dua l i s completel y lacking , bu t
in t h e p l u r a l w e ge t t h e sam e case s a s i n Greek , t h e
vocative bein g include d i n t h e nominativ e an d t h e ablativ e i n
t h e dative . Gende r an d Degree s a r e t h e usua l t h r e e . s
far a s declensio n i s concerned , thes e w o r d s fal l int o tw o
major type s o r s y s t e m s i n bot h languages , j u s t a s i n t h e
Gothic, Slavic , an d etti c languages a s i n those , eac h i s
I92 mos t properl y subdivide d b y gender , mor e specificall y
by rankin g t h e neute r gender , a s t h e simples t an d mos t
original, f i r s t , followe d b y t h e masculin e gender , whic h i s
d i r e c t l y develope d fro m t h e former , an d finall y th e feminin e
gender, whic h h a s t h e h i g h e s t numbe r o f peculiarities .
hen classifie d accordin g t o t h i s principle , t h e i n d i -
vidual declension s o f t h e s e language s t u r n ou t a s follow s

. Th e firs t syste m
nom. gen. plur. dat.
neuter 1 ) ha so v
um i a is
mase. 2) - o
us i i is
femin. )- , ,
a ae ae is a s
. The secon d s y s t e m
neuter )-
- is a i s s
common 5 )- , -
- s, is es i s s e s
166 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

The l a t t e r branches int o several minor classes


according t o t h e c h a r a c t e r o f t h e words i n some w o r d s a
consonant whic h i s hidden i n t h e nominative appear s in t h e
remaining cases, o t h e r s experienc e a contractio n of t h e final
vowel of th e wor d wit h t h a t o f t h e ending a specia l smal l
i r r e g u l a r c l a s s i s represented b y w o r d s in a n inheren t e s
19 in ati n formerl y t h e 5. declension), whic h migh t a l s o
be considere d a 6. declension i n ati n not found i n Greek .
The forme r system h a s a special ending i n t h e nominativ e
which i s lackin g i n t h e l a t t e r i n t h e forme r t h e genitive
mostly end s i n a vowel , i n t h e l a t t e r i n s i n t h e forme r
masculine and feminin e a r e distinct , i n t h e l a t t e r the y a r e
not. In t h i s way , t h a t whic h i s simpler an d more origina l
takes precedence , and w o r d s a r e bein g separated i n
accordance wit h t h e i r inheren t d i s s i m i l a r i t i e s , wherea s t h e
t r a d i t i o n a l arrangemen t involve d continua i anticipatio n an d
repetition e.g. i n t h e cas e o f w o r d s o f my ) . declension
in , t h e D of t h e i r genitive, whic h otherwis e i s c o n t r a r y
t o t h e n a t u r e of t h i s declension , i s a l r e a d y familiar from
t h e 1 . an d 2. i n t h e t r a d i t i o n a l arrangement t h a t must
e i t h e r b e elucidate d b y t h e followin g 2 . declensio n o r else
left unexplained. Th e secon d system become s much simpler
and more n a t u r a l by t h i s classification, in whic h w o r d s a r e
singled ou t f i r s t l y accordin g t o gende r an d secondl y
according t o mutua l agreemen t o r dissimilarity ,i n
contradistinction t o t h e t o t a l chaos t h a t reigns i n t h e
t r a d i t i o n a l arrangement - an d whic h ca n h a r d l y b e mad e an y
more sens e of b y mean s o f a n endles s numbe r o f r u l e s ,
exceptions an d comments , du e t o neute r w o r d s havin g bee n
thrown i n amon g t h e o t h e r s fro m whic h these languages
themselves have a c t u a l l y mos t carefull y kept the m a p a r t .
The sam e i s t r u e o f t h e t r a d i t i o n a l erroneou s an d highl y
unnatural case ordering, whic h seem s t o hav e com e abou t b y
mere accident a l l o f whic h woul d s u r e l y b e r e g a r d e d a s
very seriou s flaw s i n an y o t h e r fiel d o f knowledg e excep t
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 16

grammar. Thes e declension s a r e easil y see n t o correspon d t o


those o f ithuania n t h e 1 . ithuania n bein g t h e 2 . Gree k
and t h e w o r d s wit h a genitiv e i n of t h e . t h e2 .
ithuanian i s t h e remainde r 19 o f th e .i n and ,
minor s u b c l a s s e s o f Gree k whic h I hav e no t wante d t o
include her e l e s t i t confoun d t h e overal l picture t h e . an d
. ithuanian , whic h migh t a l s o b e include d a s c l a s s e s o f
one declension , correspon d t o t h e 5 . ati n an d Gree k i n s
and s and , where i s preserved , e.g . ). n th e
o t h e r hand , ithuania n lack s t h e 1 . an d . , becaus e n o
distinction i s mad e i n noun s betwee n neute r an d masculine .
In t h i s respec t t h e r e i s accordingl y eve n mor e agreemen t
with declensio n i n Slavi c se e pp . 11 5 ff.) fo r t h e r e eac h
declension correspond s t o eac h o f t h o s e o f ati n an d Greek ,
except t h e 6 . whic h i n t h e s e language s i s no t distinguishe d
from t h e 5 . - b a r r i n g a compariso n wit h t h e ati n w o r d s i n
an inheren t es, which, a s w e hav e seen , migh t a l s o b e
considered a 6 . declensio n i n atin . Eventually , w e shal l
undertake a detaile d investigatio n o f t h e agreemen t o f t h e
inflectional syste m wit h t h a t o f Icelandic .
s wa s s t a t e d above , adjective s a r e inflecte d exactl y
a s t h e nouns , bu t the y f a l l int o severa l type s o r c l a s s e s a s
in ettic , namel y 1 ) t h o s e i n o v or o v , at.
sa 2 ) thos e i n and , at. e is an d re ris
er ris ) thos e in and x , at. e is is s
f a r a s t h e participle s o f verb s i n Gree k a r e concerned , a l l
of t h e fou r assiv e one s accordin g t o moder n t h e o r y ) follo w
t h e f i r s t typ e i n o v . The ctiv e participle s a s wel l
a s t h e mostl y assiv e participle s o f v e r b s i n ), however,
go b y t h e . an d 5 . declensio n i n t h e neute r an d masculine ,
but b y t h e . declensio n o f t h e 1 . syste m i n t h e feminine ,
t h e 2 . syste m havin g ha d n o s e p a r a t e feminin e declension
t h e ending s bein g ) i n t h e presen t an d futur e i n o v fo r
) for ) for ), in t h e indefinit e tens e
and i n t h e ol d 195 a o r i s t s o f t h e assiv e i n for )
168 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

for ) for ), 5) i n t h e p a s t i n . ll
of t h i s i s a l s o agree s ver y closel y wit h t h e ithuania n
participles an d adjectives her e thos e o f Slavi c a r e
somewhat f a r t h e r a p a r t . ati n ma y hav e fewe r participles ,
but her e to o thos e o f t h e assiv e g o b y t h e f i r s t system ,
a s wel l a s th e ctiv e participl e o f t h e future , bu t t h a t o f
t h e presen t b y t h e second , endin g i n ns fo r n t s ) a s t h i s
participle h a s no t adopte d an y feminin e fro m t h e f i r s t
system, bu t i s inflecte d throughou t accordin g t o t h e second ,
i t follow s fro m t h e abov e t h a t i t i s unabl e t o distinguis h
t h e tw o persona l genders . T h i s h a s a l s o le d m e t o r e g a r d
t h e above-mentione d w o r d s o f ati n i n t h e inheren t es a s
i r r e g u l a r fo r ha d t h e r e bee n a r e g u l a r declensio n i n th e
second syste m specificall y fo r feminin e w o r d s , i t woul d
s u r e l y hav e bee n applie d here , inasmuc h a s bot h Gree k an d
ithuanian distinguis h t h e feninin e i n thes e participle s an d
a l s o conform s t o t h e dispositio n o f ati n i n inflectin g
adjectives an d participle s precisel y lik e t h e nouns .
ronouns d o hav e som e ending s o f t h e i r own , bu t a p a r t fro m
t h a t the y exhibi t nothin g w o r t h y o f an y note , a s f a r a s
elucidating t h e genera l syste m o f t h e s e language s i s
concerned.
The Gree k ver b syste m i s describe d an d expounde d i n
highly differen t f o r m a t s b y tw o p a r t i e s accordin g t o t h e
socalled t r a d i t i o n a l an d moder n t h e o r i e s . Ther e ar e
undoubtedly som e e r r o r s o n bot h sides . Th e traditiona l
arrangement i s mos t unreasonable , a t l e a s t i n i t s usua l form ,
breaking u p a l l o f t h e analog y o r d i n a r i l y foun d i n t h e
system o f an y huma n tongu e an d makin g t h e inflectio n o f
these w o r d s s o i r r e g u l a r , s o complicate d an d s o confusin g
t h a t accordin g t o t h i s doctrin e t h e entir e languag e h a r d l y
h a s on e singl e complet e an d r e g u l a r wor d t o show t h e
modern arrangement , o n t h e o t h e r hand , 196 i s simple ,
r e g u l a r , an d i n accordanc e wit h o t h e r language s o f t h e sam e
c l a s s , bu t doe s no t appea r t o exhaus t t h e multitud e o f
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 169

forms, no r t o assig n a definit e meanin g t o eac h an d ever y


one o f the m - grante d t h a t t h e w o r d s a r e demonstrabl y
present i n t h e a u t h o r s . urthermore , t h e moder n
arrangement apparentl y b r i n g s i n a n additiona l confusio n o r
difficulty b y l i s t i n g a s e p a r a t e presen t tens e for m fo r ever y
variant o f a word thos e presen t tens e form s becomin g s o
numerous t h a t l i t t l e seem s t o b e gaine d b y t h e simplificatio n
achieved i n shapin g form s an d i n inflection . Th e onl y wa y
t o remed y thes e tw o mai n flaw s o f t h e moder n syste m i s b y
making, som e concession s t o t h e t r a d i t i o n a l system , i n o t h e r
w o r d s onc e agai n t h e proverbia l o . Some
forms properl y belongin g amon g t h e r e g u l a r tens e form s hav e
been banishe d fro m them accordingly , i n o r d e r t o explai n
them ne w form s ha d t o b e assume d whic h a r e no t needed ,
and o f whic h n o t r a c e i s found no r wer e r e g u l a r w o r d s
and t h e change s n a t u r a l l y r e s u l t i n g fro m t h e i r inflectio n
kept sufficientl y a p a r t fro m t h e i r r e g u l a r one s whic h
genuinely presuppos e o t h e r presen t tens e forms , whic h a r e i n
fact ofte n foun d eithe r i n t h e classica l poet s o r i n ancien t
d i a l e c t s o r i n r e l a t e d languages . I n vie w o f t h i s , I thin k i t
i s r i g h t t o presen t t h e Gree k ver b syste m i n a completel y
novel fashio n whic h s i t s squarel y betwee n thos e mentioned ,
a s sketche d i n t h e following .
The ctiv e h a s si x mood s t h e indicative , subjunctive ,
optative, imperative , impersona l mood s an d t h e participles .
I t h a s t h r e e mai n tenses , present , futur e an d perfect , a s
well a s t h r e e derive d tenses , on e fro m eac h o f t h o s e th e
imperfect fro m t h e presen t tense , t h e indefinit e tens e a o r i s t )
from t h e future , an d t h e pluperfec t fro m t h e perfect .
19 Th e indefinit e tens e wa s mor e convenien t i n everyda y
speech, an d t h e mos t frequentl y use d i n t h e language , bein g
used especiall y abou t action s i n isolation , divorce d fro m a l l
notion o f time , a s wel l a s i n t h e n a r r a t i v e s t y l e . Som e
i r r e g u l a r w o r d s whic h coul d no t easil y deriv e t h i s fro m
from t h e futur e tense , use d a n ol d p a s t wit h a s h o r t e r for m
1 0 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

instead t h i s h a s t r a d i t i o n a l l y bee n calle d t h e secon d


indefinite tens e , i.e. o ), but mor e
c o r r e c t l y t h e ol d p a s t w i t h t h e meanin g o f t h e indefinit e
tense, e.g . 'I suffer' , fut. , from whic h a n
active) indefinit e tens e coul d no t easil y b e formed a c c o r d -
ingly, on e use d , an ol d p a s t fro m t h e for m
at. atior and t h e nou n ) which wa s no t o t h e r w i s e
needed, sinc e t h e r e wa s a r e g u l a r o from , and
probably woul d hav e disappeare d i f i t ha d no t bee n neede d
a s a n indefinit e tens e e i t h e r . I n a fe w w o r d s bot h t h e
s t a n d a r d indefinit e tens e an d a n ol d p a s t hav e remaine d i n
use, bu t a l l thes e w o r d s wit h t h e ol d p a s t a r e i r r e g u l a r ,
and t h o s e t h a t a l s o hav e t h e s t a n d a r d indefinit e tens e a r e
redundant an d ambiguous . Th e futur e tens e w a s mad e i n
various ways th e t t i c dialec t sometime s employe d a
formation whic h differe d fro m t h e s t a n d a r d one an d t h e
t t i c languag e wa s considere d t h e best , o t h e r w r i t e r s woul d
occasionally us e t h i s for m instea d o f t h e s t a n d a r d form
most frequentl y i t consiste d i n a contraction , bu t the n agai n
sometimes i n a n extension accordingly , i t h a s bee n calle d
t h e contracte d o r tti c future , bu t i t belong s t o t h e s t u d y
of d i a l e c t s an d h a s nothin g t o d o wit h , t he o r d i n a r y r e g u l a r
Greek w o r d s - fo r b y t h e sam e toke n on e shoul d a l s o
recognize anothe r specia l optative , inasmuc h a s 198 th e
thenians ha d t h e i r ow n ending s her e too . Som e v e r b s
a l s o mak e t h e i r perfec t fro m a n olde r an d simple r form , no w
t h e on e fro m whic h t h e ol d imperfec t wa s made , no w
another whereve r t h e r e g u l a r for m w a s foun d a l s o an d
being used , t h e olde r for m sometime s acquire d anothe r
n e u t r a l intransitive ) o r reflexiv e meaning , bu t a l l t h e w o r d s
with t h i s tens e for m an d t h e accompanyin g pluperfec t a r e
t o t a l l y i r r e g u l a r , an d t h e s e tense s perfect , an d plusqvam -
perf. mediu m o r secundum ) shoul d no t i n an y wa y b e include d
in t h e r e g u l a r conjugation .
The socalle d assiv e i s reflexiv e i n meanin g i n mos t
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 1 1

instances t h i s appear s a l s o t o hav e bee n i t s origina l


function, judgin g b y t h e origi n o f t h e persona l endings ,
an d etc. bein g apparentl y simpl y v a r i a n t s
of ith. n an and earlier ) .
In o r d e r t o s p l i t of f t h e specificall y passiv e meanin g fro m
t h i s , speaker s hav e begu n t o c r e a t e a quit e d i s t i n c t t h i r d
form, fro m which , however , j u s t a p a s t , use d a s a n
indefinite tense , an d a futur e developed . Th e forme r o f
these two , whic h shoul d the n preferabl y b e calle d t h e
e le i e a f t e r i t s mos t frequen t application , althoug h
occasionally foun d a l s o t o b e passive , correspond s completel y
t o t h e reflexiv e verb s o f t h e Slavi c an d etti c languages , a s
well a s t o t h e assiv e o f l d orse . y whateve r nam e
t h i s for m h a s t h e sam e tense s an d mood s a s t h e ctive ,
including t h e sam e redundan t an d i r r e g u l a r tense s o f
i r r e g u l a r w o r d s , excep t fo r t h e ol d perfec t an d pluperfect ,
which hav e n o reflexiv e tense s becaus e the y themselve s hav e
t h i s meanin g i n mos t instances . ro m t h i s for m t h e 199
socalled a o r i s t . 2 . medi i an d futur. 2. medi i shoul d
accordingly b e discarded t h e perfect , an d plusqvamp . medi i
have a l r e a d y bee n mentioned t h e remainin g r e g u l a r tense s
correspond completel y t o t h o s e o f t h e ctive , fro m whic h
they a r e forme d wit h a b s o l u t e r e g u l a r i t y an d analogy .
The t r u e assive , a s wa s said , h a s tw o tense s onl y th e
indefinite wit h t h e for m o f t h e p a s t tens e an d ending s a s i n
t h e ctive , an d t h e futur e tense , forme d fro m i t wit h
endings a s i n t h e reflexive . Thes e tw o tense s a r e mad e no w
with t h e mar k , now withou t i t fro m t h e s e tw o ne w
tenses hav e bee n forme d a o r i s t . 2 . an d futur. 2. passivi) ,
but bot h o f the m bein g foun d i n t h e sam e wor d an d dialec t
only w i t h t h e utmos t r a r i t y , i t i s eas y t o realiz e ho w
unreasonable i t woul d b e t o includ e thes e a s s e p a r a t e tense s
of t h e r e g u l a r conjugation . Th e e a s i e s t wa y t o ge t a n o v e r -
view o f t h e t e n e t s presente d her e i s fro m t h e followin g
1 2 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

ctive Reflexive true assiv e


Indicative Indicative Indicative
resent
Imperf. - - -
uture
Indef. - -
erfect - -
luperf. - - - -

The Reflexiv e h a s s t i l l a n o t h e r tense , a s i n ,


which migh t b e calle d paulo post futur, or 200 futur. .,
and whic h m i g h t w e l l b e include d amon g t h e r e g u l a r t e n s e s ,
s i n c e i t d o e s n o t r e q u i r e a n y n o v e l f o r m , h a d i t n o t bee n s o
r a r e an d h a d t h e r e bee n a n y t h i n g c o r r e s p o n d i n g t o i t i n t h e
ctive.
This, then , i s th e syste m o f t h e Gree k conjugation
t h e divisio no f verb s int o classe s ha s me t wit h mor e
success, th e trut h o f th e m a t t e r havin g bee n e s t a b l i s h e d
long ago . The y fal l int o pur e an d impur e v e r b s , an d bot h
of t h e s e m a i n t y p e s f u r t h e r i n t o v a r i o u s s u b c l a s s e s a c c o r d i n g
to thei r characteristi c letter . eside s these , whic h usuall y
end i n , t h e r e a r e som e r a t h e r mor e i r r e g u l a r one s i n in
t h e f i r s t mai n t y p e o r conjugation , a s i t migh t b e calle d -
although inflectio n i s ver y simila r i n both . Thes e classe s
may b e r e p r e s e n t e d a s follow s

. Th e f i r s t conjugation , pur e v e r b s

resent uture erfect assive

open has - - - -
or 2
- - - -
'
contr. - - -

- - -
closed 5. - - - -
- - - -
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1

. Th e secon d conjugation , t h e s o - c a l l e d impur e verbs

201 Present Future Perfect Passive


1. has -,-,- - - -
mute 2. - -,-,- - - -
3. - -,-,- - - -
4. - -,- -,-- -,- - -
liquid 5. - - - - -
6. - - - - -.

They hav e bee n a r r a n g e d her e generall y accordin g t o


t h e i r g r e a t e r o r l e s s e r degre e o f r e g u l a r i t y . I t i sa
familiar fac t t h a t verbs , too , distinguis h t h r e e numbers
however, i n a l l wor d c l a s s e s t h e dua l i s foun d almos t
exclusively i n th e ol d poet s an d t h e thenians , bu t
disappeared l a t e r i n s t a n d a r d Greek .
s f a r a s ati n i s concerned , everybod y appear s lon g
since t o hav e take n fou r conjugation s o f v e r b s fo r granted ,
a s i f t h i s wer e t h e on e an d onl y prope r an d n a t u r a l
classification - althoug h upo n clos e s c r u t i n y an y unprejudice d
observer wil l fin d i t t o b e highl y imperfect . Th e secon d
conjugation, fo r example , c o n s i s t s o f nothin g bu t i r r e g u l a r
and variousl y forme d w o r d s , a s oneo on i oni t
whereas perfectl y r e g u l a r w o r d s lik e i leo i le i i le
t i le re, leo and t h e like , hav e bee n mad e t o b e
i r r e g u l a r . Th e fourt h i s almos t identica l t o t h e f i r s t , o r a t
l e a s t no t nearl y a s differen t fro m i t a s t h e t h i r d , whic h
indicates poo r ordering . I n h i s prefac e t o enne 's
t ologi ling ae grae ae eid h a s , i n fact , lon g sinc e
called a t t e n t i o n t o t h e shortcoming s o f t h e t r a d i t i o n a l
classification an d suggeste d another , bu t t o 202 m y
knowledge ha d n o followin g s o f a r . s h i s theory , althoug h
absolutely c o r r e c t an d elaborate d i n sufficien t detail , i s no t
generally known , I s h a l l presen t briefl y a nove l c l a s s i -
fication o f t h e v e r b s o f ati n whic h h a s bee n adapte d t o t h e
1 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

n a t u r e and c h a r a c t e r o f t h a t language , whic h wil l a l s o brin g


out muc h mor e s t r i k i n g l y t h e wa y i n whic h i t agree s wit h
Greek, ithuanian , a s wel l a s wit h th e Slavi c an d Gothi c
languages.
In t h e f i r s t place , t h e s e w o r d s appea r t o fal l int o
those whic h a r e pur e an d impure , respectively t h e forme r
correspond t o th e t r a d i t i o n a l 1. , 2 . an d . conjugations , t h e
l a t t e r t o t h e . eac h o f t h e s e mai n division s branc h ou t
again int o c l a s s e s accordin g t o mino r differences , mor e o r
l e s s a s follow s

. Th e f i r s t conjugation , pur e verb s

res. ut. ast omin. Impers.


l ) - a o e.g . a ao a a oa a i a at re
2)-eo leo le o le i let re
) - J a dio a dia a dit rn re

a di i

. Th e secon d conjugation , impur e verb s

l ) - u o e.g . stat o stat a stat i stat t re


2) o o go o ar o ar a ar si ar t re
) - d o la do la da la si la s ni d re
The mai n differenc e i s t h a t t h e pur e hav e o i n t h e
uture, whic h i s j u s t a n extensio n o f t h e resen t an d ca n b e
compared wit h th e contracte d o r t t i c utur e o f Greek , an d
i i n t h e erfec t o r a s t , an d kee p t h e i r vowe l i n t h e
Impersonal mood , whic h i n t h e assiv ends i n ri wherea s
t h e impur e 20 tak e a es et etc. , in t h e uture ,
which coul d b e compare d wit h t h e Gree k resen t form s i n
- ,- , etc., an d i s consequentl y n o mor e tha n a varian t
of t h e resent i n t h e erfec t the y j u s t ge t - i o r si t i n
t h e Impersona l moo d a n a u x i l i a r y vowe l s h o r t before t h e
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 175

ending, whic h become s simpl y - i i n t h e assive . Thos e o f


the f i r s t conjugatio n i n io appea r somewha t i r r e g u l a r t h e
reason bein g t h a t thos e i n io an d o actuall y shoul d con -
s t i t u t e a s e p a r a t e close d c l a s s fo r th e clos e vowel s i and
differ fro m th e ope n vowel s a e o and b y t h e i r n a t u r a l
c h a r a c t e r compris e a sof t consonant , viz . i a s o r t o f wea k
and a se e above , pag e 6) , whic h mak e the m ver y fi t t o
be unite d wit h a followin g vowel bu t t h e consonan t foun d
in i was weake r tha n t h e in T h a t i s t h e reaso n wh y i n
a l l t h o s e case s wher e t h e pur e form s mus t avoi d h i a t u s b y
inserting or the w o r d s i n io prefe r t o adop t t h e ending s
of t h e impur e verb s t h a t begi n wit h a vowel , wherea s the y
stick t o t h e s t a n d a r d form s i n thos e instance s wher e t h e
ending s t a r t e d wit h a consonan t an d n o insertio n too k place .
In thos e i n for uvo) , o n t h e o t h e r hand , t h e contained
in t h e wa s s t r o n g e r an d ha d t h e sam e effec t a s an y othe r
consonant. ccordin g t o t h e Russia n an d rienta l
o r t h o g r a p h y thes e w o r d s shoul d hav e bee n w r i t t e n audij- o
audij-am a u d i j - i o r audi- vi), likewise s t a t u v - o s t a t u v - a m ,
etc. Th e liquid s hav e n o peculiaritie s i n atin . si n
Greek, t h e remainin g an d t r u l y i r r e g u l a r one s i n ati n a r e
mostly variousl y formed , an d ofte n t h e olde r for m i s
actually foun d i n t h e ncient s o r i n r e l a t e d languages , o r a t
l e a s t t r a c e s o f i t i n derive d nouns e.g . sero I sow) , se i
from seo Germ, ich s e sat fro m sao Icel . a d s sterno
sprinkle), stra i fro m s t r a o Icel . ad str 0 an d t h e
like. u t t h i s i s no t r e a l l y an y o f ou r concer n here . e
observe t h a t t h e Gree k utur e i s lackin g i n atin , bu t foun d
in ithuanian a l s o t h a t t h e classificatio n o f t h e ithuania n
v e r b s correspond s exactl y t o t h a t o f Gree k an d atin .
erhaps i t woul d b e b e t t e r t o c l a s s t h e close d verb s wit h
t h e secon d conjugatio n i n Gree k a s well .
Icelandic ma y hav e a s man y correspondence s wit h Gree k
and ati n a s an y o f t h e o t h e r r e l a t e d languages , bu t wha t
with t h e i r bein g somewha t f u r t h e r removed , the y a r e a l s o
1 6 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

less conspicuous awarenes s o f the m i s possible onl y by


virtue of t h e intervenin g links . T h a t i s t h e reaso n why,
although wha t h a s bee n presented abov e can leav e l i t t l e
doubt i n anybody' s min d a s t o t h e considerable s i m i l a r i t y i n
overall s t r u c t u r e , t h a t may no t suffic e t o t e l l u s which
individual p a r t o f one languag e corresponds t o eac h p a r t o f
t h e o t h e r . Th e most convenien t way t o fin d t h a t ou t
appears t o b e t o d e p a r t from t h e ending s an d form s o f
Icelandic, contemplatin g wha t correspond s t o eac h an d ever y
one o f the m i n t h e Thracia n language s - during t h e course
of which investigation Moesogothic an d ithuania n wil l b e
our m o s t important a i d s . nl y a f t e r havin g conclude d t h i s
s t u d y do w e hav e an y hope s o f obtainin g a clea r perspectiv e
of t h e genera l s i m i l a r i t y , somethin g whic h i t woul d b e futil e
t o e s t a b l i s h r i g h t away . Sinc e d i s s i m i l a r i t i e s appea r t o b e
g r e a t e r i n dectension , i t ma y b e advisabl e t o procee d s t e p b y
s t e p according t o t h e t r a d i t i o n a l o r d e r . efor e so doing , I
beg t o b e excuse d fo r consistentl y usin g fo r i n th e
atin w o r d s - no t a s thoug h I intende d t o introduc e t h i s
o r t h o g r a p h y , but in o r d e r t o f o r e s t a l l t h e usual , manifestl y
fa
lse pronunciatio n b y whic h i s read a s s in many w o r d s ,
causing t h e s i m i l a r i t y exhibite d b y many w o r d s t o thos e o f
all the old related languages to be completely lost.

ominative.

In t h e l d ors e t h e masculine endin g i s r o r u r or


which i s Moesogothi c an d o a f t e r t h e usua l change from
r t os anybod y easily recognize s t h e s an d s of atin ,
the o , an d o f Greek , s o much mor e r e a d i l y a s o p is
found fo r o i n ol d Doric , e.g . op fo r o . ot h
ending an d wor d ma y t h u s unhesitatingl y b e pronounce d
identical i n Icel. l n g r o r l ng r Moesog. at . long s
Icel. arg r Gr. , Icel . so r at . so s Th e corre -
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 17 7

sponding Germa n endin g er i s foun d i n adjective s onl y


langer arger In nglo-Saxo n t h i s endin g h a s disappeare d
completely bot h i n noun s an d adjectives . Th e ors e r o r a s
i t i s pronounce d r an d Moesog . and are als o
sometimes a feminin e ending , e.g . r d r a bride , Moesog .
a castle , a hand t h e ver y sam e happen s i n
Greek , , and i n ati n o s an s
Some o f t h e reason s wh y t h i s endin g d o no t o t h e r w i s e i n
Icelandic an d Gree k a s ofte n a s migh t b e expected , althoug h
t h e w o r d s obviousl y a r e t h e sam e i n bot h languages , a r e n o
doubt 1 ) t h a t no t infrequentl y t h e w o r d s hav e change d
t h e i r gender , e.g . - hr m , from t h e neuter , t h u s
shifting int o differen t declensions t h i s ma y a l s o b e t r u e
even i f t h e gende r i s t h e same , becaus e 2 ) t h e Icelandi c
ending r a l s o correspond s t o Gree k , being a l t o g e t h e r
equal t o Gree k , so t h a t could no t becom e anythin g bu t
r e.g . lat r ) i t a l s o correspond s t o t h e ati n
ending is an d t o t h e simpl e s of ati n an d Greek , sinc e
206 i i s a n auxiliar y vowe l whic h shoul d drop , an d s could
become nothin g els e bu t r whic h i s precisel y identica l wit h
r i n orse e.g . lenis lin r is is is r for
tr or t r ) i t a l s o correspond s t o at. er or fo r
r mus t remai n unchanged , an d t h e precedin g vowe l w a s a n
a u x i l i a r y vowe l whic h ha d t o dro p or , whic h amount s t o t h e
same thing , becom e r e.g . ager a r o r a r angor ng r
I t shoul d b e noted , however , t h a t r i n t h e s e l a t t e r case s i s
inherent t o t h e wor d an d keep s i t s r i n a l l endings , wherea s
i t invariabl y d r o p s outsid e o f t h e nominativ e i n t h e case s
mentioned above , j u s t a s and s is s in Gree k an d
atin i n t h e s e w e woul d accordingl y expec t r a t h e r t o fin d
an agreemen t i n t h e o t h e r ending s betwee n identica l w o r d s
which agre e i n t h e nominative , suc h a s
1 8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

at. Icel. at. Icel .


. an d V. r r angor ng r worry ,
trouble)
A. v rv r angor e ng r
G. v ris v rs angor is ng rs
D. v ri v ri angori ngri

ang r i s neute r i n Icelandi c an d h a s a somewha t


different meanin g fro m Swedis h nger an d Danis h nger
which nevertheles s i s t h e sam e word . n th e othe r
hand, Gree k or , which a r e indifferen t i n man y
instances, becom e ir i n Icelandic , suc h a s ater
adir 5 ) a f t e r a vowe l o r diphthong , however , Icelandi c
h a s 20 j u s t r , no t r a c t u a l l y t h e sam e shoul d appl y
also afte r n r s bu t her e i t i s mos t frequentl y
assimilate d int o nn rr ss o r d r o p s ou t e n t i r e l y , i f
preceded b y a consonant . u t t h e s e r u l e s o f euphon y a r e no t
a t a l l observe d b y Gree k an d ithuanian , no r d o the y nee d
them a s muc h a s Icelandic , os an d as bein g pronounce d mor e
readily afte r n r s t h a n j u s t r . aroes e doe s no t observ e
t h i s e i t h e r an d accordingl y h a s gon e bac k t o g r e a t e r
s i m i l a r i t y w i t h ati n an d Greek e.g . Icelandic
i ill fo r mikil r o r mikilur) , dign s Icelandi c t ginn fo r
t ginr o r t ginur, t i g n u r ) , lar s Icelandi c l rr a r .
laar r an d t h e like . Thus , incidentally , Icelandi c recoup s
w h a t t h e man y r mad e i t appea r t o los e i n variatio n o f
endings. owever , t h e s e euphoni c r u l e s a r e no t ver y recent ,
nor hav e the y bee n invente d b y t h e Icelander s - a s ca n b e
deduced fro m t h e fac t t h a t ati n quit e frequentl y observe s
t h e sam e thing , wheneve r t h e endin g wa s precede d b y r
e.g. o at. ag r for a g e r u s o r ag r u s ), at. a r
for aperus , a p r u s ) , so er, t h u s a l s o alt r fo r
a l t r u s ) altera alter I f t h e endin g wa s j u s t s which
was, however , extende d int o is , bu t no t s som e w o r d s kee p
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 1 9

both forms , suc h a s a er an d a ris a ris a re an d t h e like .


In Moesogothi c i s distinguishe d fro m , correspondin g
t o Gree k an d , t o bu t i n ithuania n thes e
endings a r e distinguishe d s o a s t o correspon d eve n f u r t h e r
t o t h o s e o f Gree k an d atin at . s Icel. r Moesog . )
h a s becom e as at . s genit . s Moesog . Icel . r
s genit . ) is genit . io ati n is an d s h a s becom e is
genit. is i n t h e . declension) e.g . o die as alter fo r
a l t r u s ) a n t r a s a ris a sis genit . a sis
208 feminin e endin g appear s t o b e lackin g i n t h e
indefinite for m o f Icelandi c adjectives , e.g . g dr h a s g d i n
t h e feminine however , t h e feminin e i s characterize d b y a
change o f vowe l wheneve r t h e vowe l wa s a o r befor e ng o r
n suc h a s gladr fem . gl d l ngr fem . la ng Sinc e
o t h e r w i s e suc h vowe l change s d o no t normall y tak e plac e i n
t h e languag e unles s i t i s require d b y a followin g endin g
containing a o w e a r e apparentl y justifie d i n concludin g
t h a t a s e p a r a t e endin g w a s presen t her e to o i n t h e o l d e s t
and c r u d e s t shap e o f t h e language , an d t h a t i t wa s Thi s
, whic h h a s itsel f completel y disappeare d an d i s
recognizable onl y b y v i r t u e o f t h e t r a c e s i t h a s lef t behind ,
i.e. b y t h e vowe l changes , i s matche d b y t h e nglo-Saxo n
and Germa n e g te lange etc.) , a s wel l a s th e Moesogothi c
an d t h e ithuania n a e Moesog . ) . Thi sa e
a l t e r n a t i o n i s a l s o quit e frequen t i n endings , a s w e hav e
a l r e a d y see n i n a numbe r o f examples . I n t h e definit e for m
of adjectives , o n t h e o t h e r hand , Icelandi c h a s a s e p a r a t e
feminine endin g a s g da o r in g da ) . er e
Moesogothic, throug h a chang e ver y simila r t o t h e on e j u s t
mentioned, h a s th e endin g a s in ) . Inasmuc h a s
ithuanian, atin , an d Gree k d o no t distinguis h t h e definit e
form fro m t h e indefinite , w e a r e justifie d i n comparin g thes e
feminine form s th e ol d o r t h e vowe l chang e whic h i t h a s
left behind , an d a ) wit h t h o s e o f Gree k i n an d a , an d t h a t
of ati n i n a a s wel l a s t h o s e o f ithuania n i n a an d e
180 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

True, ithuania n h a s anothe r feminin e endin g i n i , bu t i t


does no t belon g here i t correspond s precisel y t o t h a t o f
Greek i n read a) fro m t h e w o r d s i n , e.g. lat
lat s lati s t i l l i t ma y serv e t o
c o r r o b o r a t e wha t wa s suggeste d above , showin g c l e a r l y 209
t h a t t h e endin g i s frequentl y droppe d i n a closel y r e l a t e d
language. I t i s strengthene d eve n f u r t h e r b y t h e ol d
observation t h a t t h e neute r h a s identica l case s i n a l l
numbers whic h en d i n a i n t h e p l u r a l an d t h u s a r e mostl y
identical wit h t h e nominativ e o f t h e feminine , especiall y i n
atin. Th e ver y sam e i s foun d a l s o i n a l l Gothi c languages
Icel. g d gl d la ng a r e a l s o t h e p l u r a l o f t h e neute r i n t h e
t h r e e cases , s i m i l a r l y nglo-Saxo n g de Germ. g te Moesog .
. So, her e agai n Moesogothi c h a s i t s a , Germa n i t s e
and Icelandi c i t s vowe l chang e indicatin g t h e l o s s o f a u,
identically i n bot h instances . he n w e compare d Icelandi c
with t h e Slavi c language s above , w e sa w a n example , i n t h e
1. perso n o f verbs , o f ho w a o f t h i s kin d i s droppe d a t
t h e en d o f w o r d s i n Icelandic .
The neute r mar k i n Icelandi c i s t or d i n nglo-Saxo n
i t i s lackin g a l t o g e t h e r , a s i s t h e masculin e ending , i n
German i t i s -es, i n Moesogothi c i t i s e i t h e r lackin g o r i t
is - . True, t h e Germa n for m ma y appea r t o b e differen t
from t h e r e s t , bu t i t i s a c t u a l l y t h e same , excep t t w i s t e d
according t o Germa n pronunciation , whic h like s t o pu t
s i b i l a n t s instea d o f d e n t a l s se e p . 6 6 above) . u t t w i s t e d
though i t ma y b e a s f a r a s t h e consonan t i s concerned , i t
may b e assume d t o b e close r t o t h e Thracia n language s b y
v i r t u e o f havin g t h e a u x i l i a r y soun d whic h i s lackin g i n t h e
ordic languages . Moesogothi c h a s e i t h e r a n a u x i l i a r y vowe l
both befor e an d a f t e r , or els e i t lack s a l l . Th e neute r
ending i n Gree k an d ati n i s mostl y o v an d which seem s
t o b e ver y fa r fro m t h e orse however , t h e followin g
f a c t s shoul d b e note d 1 ) I n thes e language s neute r
w o r d s a r e completel y identica l t o masculines , excep t fo r
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 18 1

t h r e e o f t h e case s nominative , 210 vocative , an d


accusative) t h u s i t i s likel y t h a t t h e for m i n ov
i n i t i a l l y entere d th e accusativ e fro m t h e masculin e s o a s t o
make the m mor e similar bu t havin g bee n adopte d i n t h e
accusative i t wa s necessarily , b y t h e n a t u r e o f languages ,
extended t o t h e nominativ e an d vocativ e a s well , leavin g t h e
l a t t e r tw o s t i l l differen t i n t h e neute r an d t h e masculine .
Thus t h e o l d e s t neute r endin g o f t h e w o r d s whic h no w hav e
ov seems t o hav e bee n simpl y o , without an y ensuin g
consonant. 2 ) s t h e agreemen t wit h t h e o t h e r neute r
w o r d s o f Gree k appear s t o sho w clearly , t h e was adde d
l a t e r an d i s no t t h e origina l endin g a t a l l . Thu s t h e neute r
is of , of , of ,
of accordingly, on e woul d expec t t o ge t o) from
o . I t i s a l s o r e a d i l y see n t h a t t h e neute r i s , i n fact ,
t h e bas e for m o f a l l Gree k an d ati n adjectives , fro m whic h
t h e masculin e i s mad e b y addin g s or extendin g t h e vowel
thus, instead o f the Greek s dro p at th e
end o f w o r d s ) i s t h e bas e for m o f instead o f
, and that o f and , and s o f o r t h
in a l l instances . I t i s obviou s fro m t h i s t h a t o v canno t b e
t h e origina l for m o f t h e neuter fo r i n t h a t cas e t h e
masculine ha d t o b e or . ) Th e sam e thin g i s see n
in t h e inflectio n fo r comparison , bein g forme d r e g u l a r l y fro m
t h e neuter e.g . ,
, , and no w
likewise fro m o) the fac t t h a t
i s no t eve n preserve d i n t h e cas e o f a s y l l a b l e suppose d t o
be lon g becaus e t h e precedin g i s s h o r t , bu t r a t h e r o i s
expanded int o , e.g. , although t h e sam e
211 effec t migh t easil y b e achieve d b y keepin g and
pronouncing, r e g u l a r l y , , - tha t i s a stron g
corroboration o f th e assertio n tha t i s no t origina l t o t h e
neuter, bu t i s a l a t e r addition . ) I t h a s bee n notice d
e a r l i e r p . 160-161 ) t h a t and a r e ofte n no t inheren t an d
182 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

were adde d solel y fo r euphony , a s i t were , an d t h a t


appears t o hav e ha d a different , s o f t e r pronunciatio n i n
atin t h u s i t ma y b e a s spuriou s i n t h e masculin e itsel f a s
i t i s i n th e neuter i t i s a l s o frequentl y foun d t o hav e bee n
left ou t completel y i n archai c atin suc h a s

onc oin o ploirum e consention t


duonoro optum o fuiss e viro

instead o f

unc unu m plurim i consentiun t


bonorum optimu m fuiss e virum

also, t h a t man y case s s t i l l remaine d i n l a t e r an d educate d


Greek i n whic h on e migh t o r migh t no t ad d a t random ,
according t o wha t w a s require d b y euphon y an d t h e initia l
l e t t e r o f th e followin g word . 5 ) d d t o al l this , tha t
we actuall y d o fin d t h i s sol e o i n th e neute r o f t h e Gree k
pronouns, a p a r t o f speec h ofte n foun d t o contai n t r a c e s o f
t h e oldes t inflection s o f languages , inflection s o t h e r w i s e
l o s t suc h a s o , an d o t h e r s . I f w e compar e
t h e correspondin g ati n w o r d s id ill d ali d considerin g t h e
fact t h a t d an d t belon g t o thos e l e t t e r s whic h t h e Greek s
could no t pronounc e a t t h e en d o f a word , bu t invariabl y
discarded, e.g . w fo r ) , geni t w - on e ca n
h a r d l y doub t fo r a secon d t h a t o , whic h wa s deduce d t o b e
t h e r e a l neute r ending , r e p r e s e n t s o r , whic h 2 1 2 is
exactly th e ors e neute r endin g wit h a n auxiliar y vowel .
The Moesogoth s hav e e i t h e r discarde d i t completel y o r mad e
i t possibl e t o kee p b y addin g s t i l l anothe r auxiliar y vowel ,
saying - , suc h a s o r th e German s hav e
changed int o es s t i l l , t h e distanc e betwee n Icelandi c an d
Greek appear s t o b e th e g r e a t e s t , t h e forme r discardin g th e
auxiliary vowe l an d s t i l l keepin g t h e h a r d consonant gott
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 18

for g dt) , Gree k behavin g t h e o t h e r wa y around , discardin g


t h e consonan t an d j u s t keepin g t h e vowel , whic h i t h a s sinc e
made eve n l e s s recognizabl e b y appendin g a v t o t h e en d o f
w o r d s , her e a s i n s o man y o t h e r cases , - fo r o ,
for o r ) . Thoug h ati n h a s kep t t h e ancient ,
original endin g i n som e instances , offerin g u s a mos t
welcome opportunit y t o prov e t h e identit y o f t h e Gree k an d
Icelandic endings , i t h a s , a s Greek , t h e b a r e vowe l withou t d
in mor e instances , suc h a s a re o ne an d i n mos t adopte d
t h e extraneou s fro m t h e Greek . I t i s interesting ,
incidentally, t h a t t h i s an d hav e disappeare d agai n i n
Modern Gree k an d i n a l l t h e Romanc e language s descende d
from atin her e o h a s reappeared .
either t h i s neute r endin g t h e mai n elemen t o f whic h i s
o r , no r an y other , i s foun d i n noun s i n eithe r Icelandic ,
Moesogothic, German , o r an y o t h e r Gothi c language . Th e
reason i s probabl y t h a t i n t h e s e case s i t shoul d hav e
appeared a s j u s t o o r i n t h e ordi c language s also , s o
t h a t d an d t neve r wa s extende d t o a l l neuter s i n these , n o
more 21 tha n w a s t h e cas e i n Gree k an d atin . T h a t
t h i s wa s s o i s c o r r o b o r a t e d b y a compariso n wit h t h e Slavi c
languages i n whic h man y noun s a l s o en d i n o i n t h e neute r
of t h e 1 . declension) . Similarly , i f w e conside r t h e f i r s t
and fourt h i n Ras k t h e second ) Icelandi c declension fo r i n
t h e f i r s t t h i s o h a s becom e a whic h i s change d int o i n
t h e p l u r a l , causin g a vowe l chang e i n t h e word e.g .
Moesog. w Icel. iarta plur . i rt r bu t i n t h e secon d
or r a t h e r the ) fourt h i t h a s droppe d out , a s happen s s o
often t o vowel s a t t h e en d o f w o r d s i n Icelandic s t i l l , i t
leaves behin d a chang e o f t h e vowe l i n t h e p l u r a l , suc h a s
at a piec e o f clothing , a l s o a dish) , plur . t an d i n
nglo-Saxon an d Moesogothi c i t i s sometime s actuall y found ,
such a s ngl . S. t o r at plur . a t an d Moesog .
a word) , plur . a s er a fo r Moesogothi c ofte n h a s
wher e Icelandi c h a s o o r an d conversel y wher e
18 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

Icelandic h a s a n t h e o t h e r han d Moesogothi c an d nglo -


Saxon, whic h hav e preserve d t h e ol d ending , hav e n o vowe l
change, s t i l l Icelandi c - whic h h a s l o s t t h e endin g - h a s
achieved t h e sam e c l a r i t y b y keepin g th e vowe l chang e whic h
i t ha d brough t about . T h i s differentiatio n b y whic h
Icelandic change s Gree k o l a t e r ov ) int o a plur . in som e
instances, wherea s i n o t h e r s i t d i s c a r d s i t i n t h e singula r
and preserve s n o mor e o f i t i n t h e p l u r a l tha n t h e vowe l
change, - h a s probabl y r e s u l t e d i n t h e doubl e definit e an d
indefinite) inflectio n o f adjectives , b y whic h t h e definit e
neuter correspond s t o t h e f i r s t declensio n an d t h e indefinit e
t o t h e fourth . Gree k an d ati n coul d no t provid e t h e i r
adjectives wit h mor e tha n on e inflection , inasmuc h a s the y
kept t h e i r o v everywher e 21 fo r o , plur . a bu t
Icelandic, whic h coul d a l t e r n a t e betwee n a fo r j u s t o ) an d t
o r d for ) , t h u s go t a doubl e inflection . Example s o f
a vowe l t h u s bein g discarde d a t t h e en d i n t h e . declensio n
of noun s abound , suc h a s are Icel. ar orn Icel. orn
linu, l a t e r ) lin Icel . l n jug u l a t e r ) g
Germ. o Icel. o s f a r a s t h e neute r o f adjective s i s
concerned, i g appear s t o mak e a mistak e i n t h a t
grammar o f his , whic h i s o t h e r w i s e w r i t t e n wit h suc h g r e a t
insight int o t h e language , i n a s s e r t i n g t h a t t h e ithuania n
neuter i s foun d onl y i n t h e nominativ e an d accusativ e an d
almost a l w a y s a g r e e s wit h t h e feminin e - misle d b y t h e fac t
t h a t bot h sometime s happe n t o en d t h e sam e way e.g . bot h
neuter an d feminin e o f t h o s e i n as Gr . ) end i n a bu t
inasmuch a s t h e feminin e h a s t h e accen t o n t h i s a bu t t h e
neuter lik e t h e masculin e h a s i t o n t h e f i r s t s y l l a b l e , e.g .
g ra g ras gera bonu m bonu s bona) , i t i s eas y t o se e
t h a t t h i s a i n t h e neute r h a s nothin g whatsoeve r t o d o wit h
t h e feminin e bu t i s a c t u a l l y t h e bas e for m fo r t h e
masculine i n as a s i s r e l a t i v e t o s i n dras dras s drasi
- - ). e immediatel y c o n t r a d i c t s h i s ow n
claim t h a t i t doe s no t occu r i n an y o f t h e remainin g case s
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 18 5

by sayin g Doch wird e s zuweile n auc h mit term. Masc .


exprimiret, z.E . nt to dazu. o r to i s t h e genitiv e o f tas
in t h e masculin e Gr . ) however, I wil l ventur e t h e
claim t h a t i t neve r p r e s e n t s t h e feminin e form , bu t
invariably, a s i n Greek , atin , t h e Slavic , Gothi c an d
Romance languages , t h a t o f t h e masculine , s o fo r instanc e i n
t h e ord' s r a y e r wher e i t s a y s g l e s n i to
l i b e r a help ) nos a malo , i to i s t h e genitiv e o f i tas
evil) i n t h e masculine , no t fro m t h e 215 feminin e i t
which woul d b e i t s in t h e genitive . Inasmuc h a s as
corresponds exactl y t o Gree k in t h e masculine , i t i s
easily see n t h a t t h i s a i n t h e neute r correspond s s i m i l a r l y
t o t h e ol d Gree k o , an d t h i s appear s t o provid e a ver y
s t r o n g proo f o f t h e clai m mad e here t h a t t h e origina l
neuter endin g i n Gree k wa s no t ov , bu t j u s t o , whic h a t
l e a s t i n adjective s replace d , an endin g no t wel l t o l e r a t e d
by Gree k an d ithuania n euphony , bu t kep t i n mos t Gothi c
languages wit h a fe w change s an d foun d a l s o i n ati n i n a
few ol d w o r d s .
I t i s remarkabl e t h a t ebre w a s wel l a s t h e o t h e r
riental language s lack s t h e neute r an d use s t h e feminin e o f
adjectives instead . T h i s feminin e h a s a doubl e form , on e i n
a, an d on e i n whic h a g r e e s s t r i k i n g l y wit h t h e feminin e
and neute r j u s t mentioned , e.g . t h o s e o f ati n i n a d I t
i s no t unreasonabl e t o assum e t h e s e form s t o hav e bee n use d
randomly a t f i r s t , whil e everythin g wa s imagine d t o b e
active an d living , bu t t h a t eventually , a s sobe r reflectio n s e t
in an d man y object s wer e acknowledge d t o b e inanimate ,
without personalit y an d s e l f - a c t i v i t y , for m wa s distinguishe d
hand i n han d wit h meaning . ctually , muc h els e h a s bee n
adopted int o t h e Thracia n language s fro m t h e rienta l
languages s t i l l , t h a t i s no t r e a l l y an y o f ou r concern , fo r
we hav e goo d reaso n t o assum e t h e etti c an d Gothi c
language c l a s s t o hav e sprun g fro m t h e Thracian i.e . whe n
186 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

we sho w ho w i t i s descende d fro m th e l a t t e r w e have ,


therefore, foun d an d prove d i t s source whenc e that , i n
turn, h a s go t i t s form s an d s t r u c t u r e s i s a m a t t e r fo r th e
Greek languag e explaine r t o 216 investigate . u t inasmuc h
a s t h e rienta l language s appea r t o contai n t h e ultimat e
ground fo r t h i s endin g i n d dt believe d t h a t
calling attentio n t o t h i s s i m i l a r i t y woul d no t b e devoi d o f
interest.

Genitive.

T h i s for m h a s agai n severa l ending s i n Icelandic t h e


most frequen t bein g s , whic h i s use d i n t h e masculin e an d
neuter o f a l l adjectives , whe n the y a r e indefinite , a s wel l a s
in mos t noun s o f thes e genders , namel y det . an d 5 . i n
Rask t h e 2 . an d . ) declensions , wher e i t replace s r o r ur ,
or th e l a t t e r o f t h e doubl e consonant s nn rr ss an d d or
t o r els e i s adde d t o t h e word , wher e t h e gende r mar k i s
missing, a s i n t h e . declension . lthoug h Moesogothi c end s
a l l singula r genitive s i n , i t i s onl y which correspond s
t o t h i s , bein g use d i n t h e sam e instance s a s t h e s of t h e
Icelanders. T h i s i s precisel y ati n is an d Gree k of t h e
. an d 5 . declension s accordin g t o t h e abov e arrangement) .
The r e l a t i o n s h i p seem s obvious , fo r t h e e n t i r e differenc e
c o n s i s t s i n Icelandic , b y i t s n a t u r e , droppin g t h e auxiliar y
vowel, whic h i s , however , ofte n preserve d i n Germa n s es
and a l w a y s i n nglo-Saxo n es) , bu t d i f f e r s accordin g t o
language i e i o) e.g. o atris nglo.S. dere s Germ.
aters Icel. d rs is is Germ. is es Icel. is s also
is iar Germ. ieres Icel . d rs To t h i s
corresponds t h e ithuania n genitiv e i n is from t h e
nominative i n is i n t h e . declension e.g . - at.
dent is ith . dantis Dan. ands Moesogothic h a s s t i l l
another genitiv e endin g i n from t h e nominativ e i n
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 18 7

t h i s correspond s t o t h e Icelandi c genitiv e i n is o r


irs from t h e nominativ e i n ir suc h a s shepherd)
genit. Icel. irdir genit . irdirs T h i s ma y b e
compared t o t h e man y w o r d s i n Gree k hic h ma y en d bot h i n
and i n , such a s . nother 21
shape o f t h e sam e endin g i s t h e Moesogothi c genitiv e
from t h e w o r d s i n , which correspond s t o t h e ithuania n
a s fro m t h o s e i n s i s t h e Gree k from t h o s e
in , and t h e ati n i n s from t h e nominativ e i n s
according t o t h e 5 . . ) declension . compariso n o f som e
of t h e w o r d s wit h t h e s e ending s i n t h e languag e mentione d
with t h e i r equivalent s i n Icelandi c soo n reveal s t h a t the y
correspond t o t h e 6 . declensio n t h e 5 . i n Rask), and t h e
genitive j u s t r e f e r r e d t o accordingl y t o Icel . ar o f masculin e
w o r d s e.g . Moesog . Icel. lid r a join t a r t u s ) ,
a boy ) Icel . g r ith. idd s Icel . i d r ith .
and Moesog . s n s Icel. son r a son) . Inasmuc h a s thi s
word undoubtedl y come s fro m t h e Gree k anc. by
insertion o f as s n s ins from s s s is ith . diena
Russ. den ' fro m dies an d man y o t h e r s ) , a compariso n o f t h e
remaining ending s o f t h i s wor d i n thes e language s i s no t
without i n t e r e s t

ith. Moesog. ngloS . Icel.

. s n s s n s n son r
V. s n s n son r
cc. s n s n son
G. ,- s na s s na sonar

s n a s ni
188 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

218 lura l

ith. Moesog. ngloS. Icel .

s na s nir
s na s nir
s na son s ni
s na ena sona

s n

The Gree k wor d h a r d l y occur s wit h a l l t h e ending s


t h a t I hav e take n t h e l i b e r t y o f l i s t i n g fo r i t fo r t h e
purpose o f a complet e comparison I hav e omitte d t h e dual ,
a s i t i s foun d onl y i n Gree k an d ithuanian . Th e fac t t h a t
t h e Gree k an d ithuania n ending s o f t h i s wor d sho w s o
l i t t l e s i m i l a r i t y i s du e t o t h e ithuania n wor d bein g forme d
a s i f i t ha d bee n i n Greek , wit h a n inheren t , in
which i s kep t everywhere accordingly , b y comparin g t h e
endings o f e.g . and ati n r t s a ver y g r e a t
s i m i l a r i t y wil l b e found e.g . i n t h e accusativ e at.
ith. dative at. i ith . i p l u r a l , nominative
contracted at. s ith . s Moesog . accusative
or ) at. s fo r urns ) ith . s Moesog . dative
at . expanded s ith . se an d is s Moesog . .
The reaso n I hav e l i s t e d t h i s wor d a f t e r a l l i s t h a t t h e
form o f t h e Icelandi c ending s i n mos t case s correspond s t o
t h a t o f Greek nominativ e son s n t o wit h discarde d
final vowel , genitiv e t o son ar dativ e t o s ni
plural t o s nir i n t h e accusativ e s ni correspond s t o
but 219 son t o t h e Moesogothi c an d ithuania n
form, a s thoug h i t wer e i n Greek i n t h e genitiv e sona
corresponds t o ithuania n s n which i n t u r n i s Gree k
, with discarde d v t h e dativ e son corresponds t o
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 18 9

Moesogothic an d ithuania n s n s an d s n is
which com e fro m t h e expande d endin g o f ati n s i s
j u s t a s orn t o orn s et t o edi s edr t o
atri s etc . s f a r a s t h e genitiv e i n ar i s concerned ,
t h e s h i f t fro m t o ar appears l e s s d r a s t i c no w t h a t w e
have see n t h a t ithuania n as i s Gree k in t h e nominative ,
and recallin g ho w s constantly s h i f t s int o r i n orse
f u r t h e r , w e frequentl y hav e a i n Icelandi c wher e Moesogothi c
and o t h e r language s hav e and vic e versa , a s i n h
iarta t nga ater dir t h u s Gree k
s i m i l a r l y correspond s t o Moesogothi c b r o t h e r ) , whic h
means t h a t accordin g t o t h e usua l s h i f t s might a l s o giv e
r i s e t o ar wha t migh t see m mor e peculia r i s t h e fac t t h a t
these ending s s ar whic h correspon d t o at. is s Gr .
of t h e secon d declensiona l syste m i n ati n an d Greek , a r e
used wit h w o r d s havin g r i n Icelandic , althoug h t h i s endin g
a c t u a l l y corresponde d t o s of t h e f i r s t system . S t i l l ,
t h i s i s a l s o easil y explaine d fro m t h e foregoing , wher e w e
observed t h a t Icelandi c r o r ) r correspon d t o bot h s
of t h e f i r s t syste m an d t o s s o f t h e second . Th e
reason i s t h a t Icelandi c d r o p s t h e auxiliar y vowel , whereb y
r e a l l y become s Icelandic r ) , i n o t h e r w o r d s w o r d s
from t h e f i r s t syste m a r e t r a n s f e r r e d t o t h e second*) .
ccordingly, w e shoul d no t expec t t o fin d an y s i m i l a r i t y
between t h e Thracia n an d ordi c language s i n t h e o t h e r
endings o f w o r d s i n whic h r r corresponds t o s bu t
only i n thos e 220 i n whic h i t correspond s t o s is s
genitive s e.g . o and at. ager agri
agro do no t agre e wit h a r a rs a r i as i f t h e atin
were ager a g r i s a g r i ) whereas is is is is is i a g r e e s
with Icelandi c an d Germa n is r is s is i is is es
is e etc . i n t h e o t h e r form s a s well . Thu s a wor d ma y

*) E.g . ann s arm , shoulder) Icel. ar r gen . ar s dativ e ar i


190 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

easily b e t h e same , althoug h t h e inflectio n differs , an d


conversely ending s an d inflection s ma y b e t h e same ,
although the y a r e use d wit h differen t w o r d s i n differen t
languages. Th e Moesogothi c genitiv e i n which h a s bee n
r e f e r r e d t o here , an d whic h correspond s t o Gr . at.
s o n t h e on e hand , an d t o Icel . ar o n t h e o t h e r i s foun d
not onl y i n masculines , a s i n ithuanian , bu t a l s o i n
feminines in , a s i n t h e Thracia n languages e.g . h ,
h t h e sam e i s t r u e o f t h e Icelandi c ending , e.g .
r d r a bride ) r dar s i m i l a r l y i n a l l o t h e r feminines of
t h e . declension , suc h a s nd andar and t h e like . ro m
t h i s i t appear s t h a t i t correspond s t o Gree k in general ,
not j u s t t o or e.g. o at. no tis Icel . n ttar
ut i n Gree k t h i s endin g i s foun d a l s o i n neute r w o r d s t h e
same i s t r u e o f Moesogothi c i n on e word h read
h ), i.e. property , mone y at. p genit.
exactly a s i s t r u e a l s o o f t h e ver y sam e wor d i n Icelandi c
genit. i r and o f n o o t h e r s . Icelandi c a l s o h a s severa l
w o r d s whic h correspon d t o t h e Moesogothi c an d ithuania n
endings s i n t h e p l u r a l , i.e . t o ati n w o r d s i n s s
and Gree k w o r d s i n with a n inheren t e.g. Moesog .
Icel. t r plur . t n but thes e a r e ver y fe w an d
irregular. I n o t h e r w o r d s , fro m t h e genitiv e an d t h e
agreement wit h Moesogothi c i t appear s t h a t t h e Icelandi c
w o r d s o f t h e 5 . 221 declensio n ough t r e a l l y t o b e w r i t t e n
with a n r only , e.g . s idr s ids t h o s e o f t h e 6 . a s wel l a s
feminines of t h e . wit h r e.g . sid r sidar custom , h a b i t ) ,
r d r an d t h e like , correspondin g t o Moesogothi c .
T h i s i s , i n fact , t h e wa y i t wa s originally , a s appear s fro m
t h e fac t t h a t r cause s a vowe l chang e i n t h e genuin e an d
r e g u l a r w o r d s o f t h e 6 . declension , wherea s r doe s no t i n
t h e 5. , suc h a s g r agar a son , boy , dagr dags no t
d gur), ll r allar a field , bu t allr alls a roc k se e
a l s o Rask' s Icelandi c rimer , p . 5) . u t sinc e t h e r e a r e
a l s o severa l spuriou s w o r d s i n ar i n t h e genitive , i n whic h
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 19 1

vowel chang e doe s no t occur , suc h a s ragr ragar stadr


stadar an d sinc e absolutel y n o distinctio n i s mad e i n
pronunciation betwee n t h i s r an d t h e o r d i n a r y r , d i f f e -
r e n t i a t i n g the m i n w r i t i n g migh t b e a n inappropriat e
application o f languag e explanation . T h a t the y r e a l l y a r e
different a s t o t h e i r origin , an d t h a t i s mor e essentia l i n
w o r d s i n r ar , i s s t i l l c l e a r l y visibl e i n nglo-Saxo n
where t h i s endin g ir i s a l w a y s dropped , a s w e observe d
e a r l i e r whe n dealin g wit h t h e nominative , leavin g behin d a
only i n thes e instance s th e 6 . declension) , suc h a s s n ' a
son' son r ag g r sid sid r lag liquid ) l g r an d
several o t h e r s , a s ove r a g a i n s t s id Icel . s idr o r s id r
e Icel . i r o r i r etc .
The Moesogothi c genitiv e i n whic h h a s bee n
described her e t h u s correspond s t o t h e Gree k genitiv e i n
at . s only , an d i s foun d onl y i n 222 w o r d s i n
of a l l genders bu t t h e Icelandi c endin g ar i s use d a l s o i n
a l l feminine s o f t h e . declension , an d t h u s correspond s
r a t h e r t o t h e Gree k i n general . Moesogothi c ha s
another varian t o f t h i s endin g i n t h e . declension , however ,
viz. , fro m t h e nominativ e a , whic h i n t u r n correspond s
precisely t o Gree k fro m a e.g . ithuania n igl a
mist igl s Dori c . Thi s correspond s
exactly t o Icelandi c ar i n t h i s declension , e.g . Moesog .
Icel. ar ar o f a n ark , Icel . eniar o f a s c r a t c h ,
Icel . ardar o f e a r t h , a f t e r t h e s h i f t s j u s t mentioned .
. 189) . I t i s a l s o easil y understoo d t h a t Gree k coul d
not ver y wel l becom e anythin g els e bu t ar , accordin g t o t h e
n a t u r e o f Icelandic . Th e correspondenc e o f Moesogothi c ,
Greek , t o t h e Icelandi c endin g ar i n t h e . declensio n i s ,
incidentally, importan t whe n i t come s t o explainin g wha t
t h e s e w o r d s a r e lik e i n t h e nominative . er e the y en d i n
in Moesogothi c an d i n Greek , fo r whic h w e woul d expec t t o
find t h e endin g in Icelandic , accordin g t o t h e customar y
s h i f t s i n language althoug h w e d o no t fin d t h i s , w e d o
192 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

have a chang e o f vowel , whic h i n a l l o t h e r instance s


presupposes a followin g an d whic h ca n b e explaine d i n n o
o t h e r wa y i n th e nominativ e wher e on e woul d expec t t o fin d
t h e wor d i n i t s simples t form , e.g . r for r of Moesog.
and at. ar a and t h e like , whic h a g r e e s mos t precisel y
with wha t wa s observe d e a r l i e r p. 1 9 ) i n r e l a t i o n t o
adjectives, viz . a s f a r a s t h e nominativ e singula r o f
feminines and th e p l u r a l o f n e u t e r s i s concerned . I n t h e 8 .
declension Icelandi c h a s s t i l l anothe r endin g i n t h e genitive ,
namely r r an d Moesogothi c read ) but t h i s i s
j u s t a varian t o f t h e preceding th e e n t i r e differenc e
c o n s i s t s 22 i n t h e forme r havin g a n inheren t vowel ,
because t h e nominativ e containe d a o r ), wherea s t h i s onl y
h a s a n auxiliar y vowel , an d i s foun d i n w o r d s whos e
nominative end s i n a consonan t withou t an y a o r , e.g .
an inlet , genit . r o r r i l milk, genit . i l r
ccordingly, whe n t h i s endin g i s combine d wit h a vowe l
change, i t i s no t t h e usua l on e require d befor e bu t
another whic h sometime s occur s onl y befor e r an d i , suc h a s
r a f o r e s t field , genit . er r o r er r ha d i t bee n a n
inherent ur , i t shoul d hav e com e ou t m rkur, j u s t a s i n t h e
dative p l u r a l r The correspondin g Moesogothi c ,
likewise, i s foun d onl y i n w o r d s whic h en d i n a n inheren t
r o o t ) consonan t o r s both i n t h i s an d i n o t h e r r e l a t e d
languages, no t i n a vowel . T h i s feminin e endin g i n t h e
genitive i n a mer e r , then , ca n b e compare d t o t h a t o f t h e
masculine i n a mer e s bot h lackin g a vowe l an d havin g bot h
come fro m t h e sam e source , i.e . ati n is an d Gree k , and
both havin g auxiliar y vowel s i n Moesogothi c viz . and
) t h e sol e differenc e bein g t h a t s h a s becom e r i n t h e
feminines according t o t h e usua l s h i f t . n eve n g r e a t e r
agreement wa s foun d betwee n t h e masculin e an d feminin e
ending ar t h e forme r wa s Moesogothi c , Greek
, atin s t h e l a t t e r o n t h e o t h e r han d Moesogothi c
, Greek in bot h instance s a n inheren t vowe l wen t
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 19

before, an d t h e sam e chang e o f t h e followin g s int o r .


The clai m t h a t t h i s i s , i n fact , t h e t r u e origi n o f
these genitiv e form s i s s t r o n g l y supporte d b y a consideratio n
of t h e Icelandi c an d Moesogothi c genitiv e o f t h e feminin e o f
adjectives i t i s r ar i n Icelandic , - i n Moesogothic ,
and t h u s appear s 22 t o b e compose d o f t h e tw o l a s t -
mentioned feminin e ending s i n bot h languages r an d ar
Moesogothic an d fo r i s j u s t a sof t s whic h take s
t h e plac e o f t h e h a r d s whe n t h e wor d expands bu t t h e
t r u e origi n o f t h i s i s undoubtedl y a n expansio n intende d
originally t o preven t h i a t u s i n suc h instance s ati n ofte n
i n s e r t s a n r , wherea s Gree k c o n t r a c t s , e.g . at. n r s
o at . s ris s i m i l a r l y - at . gene
r is Gr . , et s eteris en s eneris an d t h e like .
The Gothi c language s hav e preserve d t h e s h o r t e r contracte d
form o f Gree k i n t h e nouns , fro m whic h th e endin g ar t h e
longer extende d ati n for m o n t h e o t h e r han d i n t h e
adjectives, fro m whic h r ar instea d o f er ar wit h th e
auxiliary vowe l suppresse d befor e t h e ending . Moesogothi c
h a s kep t t h i s auxiliar y vowe l ) , bu t inserte d a betwee n
t h e vowel s fo r r an d mad e i t int o , wherea s Icelandi c
a s usua l h a s change d t h e secon d s int o r a s well . Gree k -
e.g . ) an d ati n eris a r e t h u s Moesogothi c
an d t h e contracte d rar o f Icelandic , ati n eneris fo r
instance, bein g precisel y Icelandi c n rar o r nnar wit h
assimilation, o r nnrar j u s t a s t h e dativ e eneri i s
Icelandic nri o r nni nnri Instea d o f t h e feminin e
genitive ending s ar an d r o r r nglo-Saxo n h a s j u s t e ,
which appear s t o hav e evolve d fro m ati n is Moesogothi c
, b y discardin g s Germa n h a s gon e eve n f u r t h e r , d i s -
carding eve n t h e e , havin g n o endin g a t a l l i n t h e genitiv e o f
feminine nouns . Th e nglo-Saxon s hav e re an d Germa n h a s
er i n adjectives , bu t t h i s er i s , then , j u s t derive d fro m t h e
inserted r i n e r i s rar o f ati n 225 an d Icelandic , s o t h a t
ar t h e actua l t r u e ending , h a s disappeare d completel y her e
19 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

a s i n t h e nouns . T h i s i s a l s o evidence d b y t h e fac t t h a t


German h a s t h i s sam e er i n t h e dativ e wher e Icelandi c
s i m i l a r l y h a s mad e i int o ri nglo-Saxo n r e b y insertin g r
likewise i n t h e genitiv e p l u r a l wher e Icelandi c h a s i n s e r t e d r
in t h e sam e wa y an d t h e r e b y change d t h e endin g a int o ra
so t h a t g ter i s Icelandi c g drar g dri an d g dr
) . ccordingly , t h e Germa n endin g er doe s no t
come int o questio n a s f a r a s elucidatin g t h e origi n o f t h e
Icelandic endin g ar i s concerned , bu t i t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o
compare a l l t h e shape s i n whic h i t appears , Gr . - at . e
r is Moesog . - - Icel . r ar nglo.S . re Germ . er e.g .
Moesog. Icel . g drar nglo.S . g dre Germ , g ter
esides thes e tw o genitiv e ending s at . is as i n
a ilias wit h a l l t h e v a r i a t i o n s thereo f Gree k h a s s t i l l a
t h i r d on e i n t h e 1 . an d 2 . declensio n th e c l a s s i c a l secon d
declension), whic h i n s t a n d a r d Gree k i s , whic h howeve r i s
a contractio n fo r , , t h e forme r bein g foun d i n i t s pur e
and unaltere d for m i n t h e Ionians , t h e l a t t e r occurrin g ofte n
in t h e poet s expande d int o o o, bu t t h e an d o belon g t o
t h e wor d proper t h e ending , then , i s j u s t o . ithuania n
h a s precisel y t h e sam e endin g o r a accordin g t o t h e
dialect o f Memel , i n t h e w o r d s i n as s i m i l a r l y i n w o r d s i n
is no t s ) io correspondin g exactl y t o Gree k ov , ,
. I n ati n i correspond s t o t h i s , j u s t a s o f th e
second syste m i s ati n is s word s i n hav e passe d int o
t h e secon d syste m b y changin g int o s r a s hav e a l s o
many o f t h o s e i n a b y droppin g t h i s , t h e s e w o r d s hav e
acquired a differen t genitive , accordin g t o t h e 26 syste m
which the y hav e bee n assigne d t o , namel y on e o f t h o s e j u s t
described i n s ar o r r accordingly , w e shoul d no t expec t
t o fin d t h i s genitiv e i n o ith . o a ) i n t h e secon d syste m i n
Icelandic i f w e loo k a t t h e f i r s t , however , wha t w e fin d i n
t h e 1 . an d 2 . declension , i n o t h e r w o r d s i n t h e neute r an d
masculine w o r d s , a s wel l a s i n t h e correspondin g definit e
form i n t h e s e gender s o f a l l adjectives , i s precisel y t h e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 19 5

ending a whic h apparentl y i s Gree k o , j u s t a s ithuania n a


as wa s Gree k o ov ) , an d t h e genitiv e o f t h e s e w o r d s
a l s o i s a i n t h e dialec t o f Meme l an d t h e Icelandi c genitiv e
ending o f t h e secon d syste m ar wa s Gree k . er e th e
Moesogothic for m i s , b y t h e s h i f t fro m a t o en in
a l r e a d y r e f e r r e d t o o n p . 50 , wit h a n adde d s , whic h i s a
common genitiv e mar k i n Moesogothic , i n o r d e r t o s e t i t
a p a r t fro m t h e dativ e i n in e.g . fo r ilia
ilia I n t h i s instance , then , o f a l l Gothi c language s
Icelandic h a s t h e for m c l o s e s t t o Greek . ati n i i s als o
f a r t h e r a p a r t , althoug h t h i s s h i f t i s no t uncommo n i n atin .

The dativ e

i s anothe r for m whic h h a s severa l ending s i n Icelandic .


ouns o f t h e . , 5 . an d 6 . declensio n o r t h e 2. , . , an d 5 .
following Rask ) hav e t h e endin g i i n t h e dative , excep t fo r
some case s i n whic h t h i s i h a s dropped , i.e . n o s e p a r a t e
ending i s found . Th e Gree k an d ati n endin g i s exactl y t h e
same a s t h e on e i n Icelandic wherea s t h e on e i n Moeso -
gothic i s - t h i s being , however , j u s t a remot e varian t o f
t h e former , a s i s t r u e a l s o o f t h e nglo-Saxo n an d Germa n
e. S t i l l , t h e Thracia n dativ e endin g i appear s i n t h e
feminine w o r d s a s well her e Moesogothi c h a s ) an d
nglo-Saxon er 22 Icelandi c h a s s h o r t here , an d
sometimes s h o r t i , a s in endi fro m nd hand) , o r els e
no specia l ending . T h i s i s probabl y j u s t a v a r i a n t o f t h e
same ending , lik e t h e Moesogothi c a , - vowel s whic h w e hav e
frequently see n interchange . T h i s i s corroborate d b y th e
fact t h a t t h e feminin e endin g o f adjectives , whic h i s a l s o
in Moesogothic , correspond s t o t h e Icelandi c ending , wit h a n
i inserted , ri no t r u ) , whic h i n t u r n i s ati n eri i n eneri
eteri generi etc. , instea d o f - , a s wa s mentione d
above. u r t h e r m o r e fro m t h e fac t t h a t t h e dativ e i n t h e
196 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

neuter o f adjective s end s i n bu t w e hav e a l r e a d y see n


t h a t t h e endin g wa s i i n nouns , whic h make s i t reasonabl e t o
assume t h a t t h e s e vowel s wer e originall y equivalen t i n t h i s
ending, bu t hav e sinc e bee n fixe d i n suc h a wa y t h a t t h e
ending o f t h e neute r o f noun s wa s i , conversel y i n
adjectives, an d i n t h e feminin e o f noun s bu t i n adjective s
ri i n o r d e r t o preven t t h e discor d o f severa l successiv e
w o r d s becomin g a n identica l endin g whe n t h e a r t i c l e , nou n
and adjectiv e a t time s combin e i n t h e sam e cas e se e t h e
reface t o Rask' s Grammar , p . 8 an d 9) . owever , on e
might also , an d no t a t a l l improbably , compar e t h e sai d
ending wit h t h e ithuania n dativ e i n i an d t h e a b l a t i v e i n
o f w o r d s i n as correspondin g t o Gree k an d ati n o o f
words i n s an d o v likewis e t h e Moesogothi c
ending i n t h e feminin e ma y b e compare d wit h at . ae e a r l .
ai ith . ai Gr . o c s o t h a t w e woul d j u s t hav e t o compar e
Icelandic i an d Moesogothi c wit h Gree k an d ati n i
however, fo r r e a s o n s whic h wil l soo n appea r t h i s seem s t o
me l e s s probable .
228 ctually , t h e dativ e endin g i n Gree k i s i i n a l l
instances, bein g recognizabl e onl y i n t h e secon d syste m
because i t i s precede d b y a consonant wherea s i n t h e f i r s t
in whic h t h e for m endin g o f t h e wor d consiste d o f a vowe l
and a consonant , t h i s i combine s wit h t h e vowe l )
into t h e diphthong s o . f thes e ol d form s ai i s , i n
fact, replicate d i n t h e ol d ati n ai a s i n a lai fo r a lae
and o x i n ol d Gree k an d i n som e pronoun s ) .
Eventually, t h e precedin g vowel , bein g mor e e s s e n t i a l t o t h e
word, wa s lengthened , whereupo n Gree k o r t h o g r a p h y require d
t o b e w r i t t e n underneath bu t s u r e l y t h e r e wa s n o
requirement b y pronunciatio n t h a t i t b e passe d by i f so , i t
would s u r e l y hav e bee n lef t ou t a l s o i n w r i t i n g , j u s t a s a l l
o t h e r l e t t e r s droppe d i n pronunciation t h e Greek s o f t h e
present da y s t i l l pronounc e t h e s u b s c r i p t iot a i n som e
instances bu t i t certainl y wa s weakened , inasmuc h a s t h e
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 19

preceding vowe l receive d mor e weigh t du e t o i t s bein g


lengthened. o r t h a t reaso n i t disappeare d i n ati n whic h
j u s t kep t t h e o . Th e Slavi c languages , e.g . olis h an d
ohemian, hav e bot h form s i n t h e dative , an d o i e.g .
panu o r ano i ) . ithuania n s i m i l a r l y h a s both ,
but i n s e p a r a t e meanings , i bein g t h e dativ e endin g an d
t h a t o f t h e ablativ e - almos t i n t h e fashio n o f ati n i an d
i n th e 5 . declensio n t r a d i t i o n a l l y t h e .) , whic h h a s a
different origin , however . T h a t whic h h a s cause d t h e entir e
ending t o b e preserve d i n t h e s e language s i s t h e whic h i s
contained i n whe n t h e endin g wa s i bu t wa s expressl y
w r i t t e n wher e wa s rendere d o , a s i n t h e olis h an d
ohemian o i nothe r varian t o f t h e dativ e i s t h e
insertion i n ithuania n o f a j instea d o f a v t o s e p a r a t e
t h e vowels t h i s , too , h a s acquire d a specia l meanin g 229
having becom e a locativ e case s t i l l , t h a t i s non e o f ou r
concern i n t h i s place . Th e above-mentione d wa y o f
separating vowels , b y insertin g or an d i s quit e
normal i n ithuania n an d ati n a s wel l a s i n Icelandic e.g .
i le o le o especiall y i n t h e dative s ati n
frequently h a s inserte d , suc h a s ti i fo r t e fro m te i t
i s familia r ho w e befor e a vowe l become s i befor e a
consonant, a s in eo i i it is e s ei ) si i fo r sei ) no is
for n o s , fro m Gree k , wit h t h e mar k o f t h e plura l
instead o f t h a t o f t h e dual , v ) o is eis o r i s
likewise dea s fro m - , d a s d o s t similarl y i n th e
dative an d ablativ e o f t h e p l u r a l o f t h e . an d 5 . o r . , . ,
5.) declensions , wher e t h e atin s hav e i s s e s fo r
the o f t h e Greeks , suc h a s atri s ar s
die s ro m t h i s i t appear s t h a t t h e expansio n o f t h e
dative endin g b y insertio n o f althoug h i t doe s occu r i n
some instance s i n t h e singula r i n atin , j u s t a s t h e olis h
i s f a r mor e frequentl y me t wit h i n t h e p l u r a l , an d
especially i n t h e secon d declension . u t a s t h e labia l
l e t t e r s a r e s o closel y r e l a t e d t o t h a t the y frequentl y
198 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

s h i f t int o eac h o t h e r i n numerou s languages , an d t h e etti c


languages i n p a r t i c u l a r ofte n hav e instea d o f th e forme r
see p . 16 , 1 . 18) nobod y i s s u r p r i s e d t o fin d on e f u r t h e r
variant o f t h i s endin g i n ithuania n wit h instea d o f
T h i s occur s i n t h e ablativ e singula r o f t h e secon d declensio n
i i an d i n mos t case s i n t h e dativ e an d a b l a t i v e p l u r a l
of both , althoug h i n differen t shapes likewis e i n th e
masculine singula r an d i n a l l gender s o f t h e dua l an d p l u r a l
of adjectives . I n t h e p l u r a l thes e ending s hav e s i n t h e
dative an d is i n t h e ablative t h i s s an d is correspon d t o
atin is an d s i n no is edi s an d t h e like . Th e Slavi c
languages a l s o hav e 2 0 a l l t h e s e endings , a l b e i t i n a
somewhat simple r shape , s havin g invariabl y bee n droppe d i n
the plural . I t woul d b e superfluou s t o compar e a l l thes e
endings wit h t h e i r differen t vowel s befor e i n orde r t o
show ho w eac h o f t h e ithuania n an d Slavi c ending s
correspond o n t h e on e han d t o t h o s e o f atin , o n t h e o t h e r
t o thos e o f Moesogothic , whic h sometime s hav e differen t
auxiliary vowels inasmuc h a s anyon e s u r e l y h a s n o t r o u b l e
realizing t h a t the y correspon d t o t h e rn o f Icelandi c foun d
in t h e dativ e singula r i n t h e masculin e o f adjective s an d i n
t h a t o f t h e p l u r a l i n a l l gender s o f adjective s an d nouns
a l l t h e mor e superfluous , t o b e sure , a s i t occur s i n
Icelandic i n t h i s on e shap e only fo r o i s a n ol d spellin g
which i s precisel y equivalen t t o rn T h a t t h e l a s t vowe l o f
t h i s endin g was , i n fact , is no t us ) i s apparen t fro m t h e
pronouns no is o is etc. , a s wel l a s fro m t h e singula r i n
which th e endin g wa s i i o r a t l e a s t i tha t i s jus t a
minor chang e o f pronunciation , whic h wa s perhap s originall y
caused b y th e fac t t h a t t h e r e w a s a l r e a d y a n i i n t h e
preceding s y l l a b l e fo r t h e ful l endin g wa s r e a l l y i s i n
t h e . an d 5 . declension s th e . accordin g t o t h e t r a d i t i o n ) .
y t h e way , t h i s s fo r is , again , i s neithe r p a r t i c u l a r l y
recent, no r wa s i t invente d b y t h e Romans fo r trace s
thereof a r e foun d eve n i n Icelandic , suc h a s d o s d a s
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 19 9

t ei r tri s ri r o r re r u t t h e vowe l whic h


follows o r in t h e singular , too , h a s scarcel y lef t an y
o t h e r t r a c e s i n Icelandi c tha n t h e ol d dativ e ei a o f s
instead o f ei Moesog . ) . I t i s ver y s t r a n g e
t h a t j u s t a s ati n h a s l o s t t h e i a f t e r o whic h a f t e r a l l
was t h e t r u e mar k o f t h i s for m i n accordanc e wit h t h e
observation t h a t a vowel , especiall y a wea k an d u n s t r e s s e d
one, i s generall y dropped) , 2 1 1 - Icelandi c s i m i l a r l y h a s
l o s t bot h i an d is o r s almos t everywhere , althoug h thes e
were t h e t r u e endings i n o t h e r w o r d s h a s preserve d t h e
t r a n s i t i o n , bu t droppe d t h a t whic h wa s suppose d t o b e joine d
t o t h e mai n wor d b y t h i s t r a n s i t i o n . S t i l l , w e hav e see n
another exampl e o f t h i s i n t h e preceding , i n t h e cas e o f t h e
German ending s fo r t h e genitiv e an d dativ e singula r o f
feminines, an d fo r t h e genitiv e p l u r a l o f adjectives . gain ,
i t i s a mos t peculia r fac t t h a t j u s t a s t h i s ending , wit h t h e
ithuanians an d Slavs , i s encountere d primaril y i n t h e
ablative, an d occasionall y suc h a s i n t h e singula r o f a l l
adjectives) a l s o i n t h e locative - t h e correspondin g endin g
in ati n s i m i l a r l y comprise s a concep t o f place , especiall y i n
t h e singular , nay , i n som e ati n w o r d s a l l t h r e e case s ma y
even b e represente d wit h differen t endings a s in id is
d a t . ei loc . i i a b l . eo s i m i l a r l y ali d s d a t . alii loc .
ali i a b l . ali o t h e r e a r e remnant s o f s t i l l more , suc h
a s tro i e an d t h e like . l l thes e form s a r e usuall y
represented a s adverbs , bu t the y a r e exactl y lik e ti i si i
except t h a t , wit h t h e existenc e o f anothe r dativ e an d
ablative, the y hav e kep t t h e i r locativ e meanings .
In t h e f i r s t an d simple r declensiona l syste m Icelandi c
h a s tw o genitiv e ending s an d tw o matchin g completel y
equivalent dativ e an d accusativ e endings , viz . a i n t h e neute r
and masculine , i n t h e feminine havin g observe d unde r t h e
genitive t h a t t h e forme r o f thes e probabl y i s t h e ithuania n
a o ro Gree k o , whic h r e s i d e s i n t h e s t a n d a r d ,i t
immediately appear s likel y t h a t t h e no t to o differen t dativ e
200 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

ending Gr . o r 2 2 ox , at. o ith . i o r droppin g t h e


i s i m i l a r l y h a s give n r i s e t o t h e Icelandi c dativ e endin g a ,
which undoubtedl y i s t h e o l d e s t shap e o f t h i s endin g i n th e
Gothic languages , fro m whic h Moesogothi c i h a s arise n b y
t h e usua l chang e o f a int o in ccordin g t o t h e s h i f t s i n
languages t h i s appear s t o b e mor e reasonabl e tha n t h e
assumption t h a t t h e Icelandi c endin g i n i n t h e neute r o f
adjectives shoul d hav e com e fro m t h i s Gree k an d ati n
ending unde r t h a t assumptio n on e woul d a l s o lac k a n origi n
of t h e endin g a , no t t o mentio n t h a t t h i s woul d impl y
t r a n s f e r r i n g a n endin g o f t h e f i r s t syste m t o t h e w o r d s o f
t h e second somethin g whic h actuall y h a s occasionall y
occured, a s w e sa w i n t h e cas e o f t h e nominative . I ti s
not j u s t o o r whic h p a s s int o a , a s w e hav e see n here ,
but a l s o conversel y a int o o o r t h e endin g i n th e
feminine dativ e whic h correspond s t o t h e masculin e endin g
j u s t r e f e r r e d t o i n t h e simple r system , seem s the n t o hav e
arisen i n a completel y p a r a l l e l fashio n fro m Gr . o r an d
at. ae wit h a discarde d i o r e j u s t a s t h e sam e endin g i n
t h e genitiv e ) correspond s t o t h i s sam e ai o f atin
whereas th e Gree k endin g appeare d t o b e t h e Icelandi c ar
in feminine s o f t h e secon d system , o f whic h previously .

The accusative

ends i n o v i n t h e f i r s t syste m i n Gree k at . ni whic h i s


clearly t h e sam e a s t h e a o f t h e ithuanians , b y t h e usua l
s h i f t s . Thi s subscripte d a ) wa s probably , a s a l l
subscripted vowe l c h a r a c t e r s o f t h i s language , originall y
pronounced wit h a n a s a l sound , somethin g lik e t h e renc h
or th e 2 ortugues e o r ol d ati n inale the y ar e
s t i l l bein g pronounce d t h i s wa y i n olish , bu t i n ithuania n
t h i s soun d seem s ofte n t o hav e disappeared . ro m th e
foregoing, advanc e expectation s a r e t h a t i n Icelandi c t h i s
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 201

ending woul d eithe r hav e t o discar d t h e nasa l soun d o r make


i t into a h a r d n an d probabl y kee p a fo r o a s i n
ithuanian. I n fact , bot h t h i n g s happen , t h e endin g bein g a
in t h e simple r system an d t h e definite adjectives , bu t an i n
t h e indefinite. t t h e same tim e t h i s c o r r o b o r a t e s t h e
origin o f a in t h e genitiv e o f t h e simple r system fro m o an d
in t h e dative from w .
In t h e feminin e t h e Gree k endin g i s a v at . a
ith. a a s i n th e masculine her e again w e might expec t
Icelandic t o probabl y drop v an d e i t h e r kee p t h e vowel ,
a s i t was a i n t h i s instance , o r chang e i t into ot h
t h i n g s happen i n t h e definit e form o f adjectives an d i n t h e
simpler system o f noun s t h e feminin e ending of t h e
accusative i s bu t in t h e indefinit e adjectives i t i s a Th e
reason why n w a s no t preserved anywher e i n t h i s instance
appears t o have bee n a desir e t o s e p a r a t e t h i s form fro m
t h a t o f t h e masculine i n an T h i s chang e of a int o ma y
a l s o serve t o c o r r o b o r a t e t h e suggeste d origi n o f i n th e
genitive an d dative from ati n ai Greek a o r ax . I t i s
a l s o i n t e r e s t i n g - an d w e have no w ha d severa l examples ofa
t h i s - t h a t wheneve r a singl e vowel i s a t t h e en d o f a wor d
Icelandic drops it, but i f i t i s followe d b y anothe r
consonant, i t i s usually conten t t o j u s t drop t h i s and kee p
t h e vowel . I t i s kep t onl y i f i t happen s t o b e s whic h i s
then change d int o r .
In t h e second system ati n h a s t h e accusative endin g
e but t h i s e o r i which i s a l s o sometime s found, i s
j u s t a dialecta l variation 2 o f t h e Gree k endin g a o r v .
The l o s s o f a vowe l a t t h e end , a s o f v , i s somethin g w e
have witnesse d s o ofte n t h a t w e woul d a l s o expect i t here
and i t does , i n fact , happe n i n a l l Icelandi c noun s o f t h e
second system, whic h accordingl y completel y lac k a separate
accusative ending , t h e accusativ e for m bein g distinguishe d
from t h e o t h e r s solel y b y v i r t u e o f t h e fac t t h a t the y eac h
have t h e i r s e p a r a t e endings, wherea s t h i s on e h a s none .
202 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

There i s , then, a mos t remarkable agreement even in t h i s


apparent d i s s i m i l a r i t y , an d i n a l l t h e s e instances Icelandic i s
so close t o Gree k an d ati n an d in suc h direct connection
with the m t h a t describin g an d comparin g t h e ending s o f t h e
o t h e r Gothic languages, whic h ma y a t time s b e equall y close,
but neve r closer , woul d be a w a s t e o f time . ike t h e
endings of t h e dative , these, too, d i s t r i b u t e d in Icelandi c
with du e respect t o euphony s o t h a t w o r d s havin g identica l
endings ver y r a r e l y occur t o g e t h e r , an d fewe r ending s agre e
than i n o t h e r languages e.g . g dan dreing bonu m virum or
puerum), g da st l bona m puellam), gott arn
o ), likewise wit h t h e a r t i c l e inn g da dreing
o o ), ina g d st l ) . In t h e
neuter on e canno t r e a l l y talk o f an y accusative , a s i t i s
identical t o t h e nominativ e i n all Thracia n an d Gothic
languages, o f whic h previously .

The vocative

or, a s i t might a l s o convenientl y be called , t h e exclamative ,


i s foun d i n t h e Thracian , ettic , an d Slavic languages, but
lacking i n t h e Gothic. I t will undoubtedly b e found s t r a n g e
t h a t a cas e foun d i n all t h e o t h e r r e l a t e d language c l a s s e s
i s s o completel y lackin g in t h e Gothic languages. e hav e
seen t h a t t h e ablativ e an d t h e locativ e wer e included , in
Greek t o t a l l y , i n ati n 2 mostly, in t h e dative , from
which the y wer e develope d i n i t i a l l y a s v a r i a n t s o f
pronunciation, l a t e r with a s e p a r a t e meaning becaus eo f
which i t was, in fact , mos t inappropriate t o i n s e r t t h e
accusative an d t h e vocativ e i n betwee n the m i n fixin g t h e
o r d e r o f cases however , t h e vocativ e a t time s d i f f e r s fro m
t h e o t h e r forms t o such a n exten t t h a t w e do not see m t o
be ab le t o explain t h e lack of i t in t h e Gothic language s i n
t h e same fashion. ould i t r e a l l y be t h a t i t h a s left no
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 203

t r a c e her e The Gree k vocativ e i s derive d fro m t h e


nominative, eithe r b y shortenin g t h e vowe l o f t h e ending , o r
by dropping t h e endin g s of t h e nominative , o r b y changing
into t h e r e i s no chanc e o f findin g t h e f i r s t option in
Icelandic, a s t h i s languag e comprises no nominativ e wit h a
long vowe l a t t h e end i n adir t h e i i s a l r e a d y s h o r t an d
t h u s coul d not change in t h e exclamative . Th e Icelandi c
form with t h e s h o r t vowe l i s probabl y t h e origina l one ,
agreeing wit h ati n at r at r fro m whic h t h e Gree k form
appears t o hav e come b y expansion. n e could h a r d l y expec t
s o r t h e corr esponding r t o drop , a s t h e Icelanders do not
distinguish r from ur , and t h i s actuall y corresponds t o
Greek at. is , G r . Dor. op . ccordingly , onl y t h e
t h i r d option remains, viz. having change d t o e. Inasmuc h
a s mos t t r a c e s o f t h e second declensiona l system were foun d
in t h e nouns o f Icelandic , wherea s t r a c e s o f t h e f i r s t syste m
were see n i n adjectives , especiall y in t h e i r definit e form,
t h a t alone might s u g g e s t looking for t h e ending i n questio n
in t h a t place . Migh t t h e r e not b e a vocative in ordi c
adjectives True, no vocativ e i s l i s t e d in t h e g r a m m a r s ,
but - j u s t t r y t o use t h e simple nominative i n Danish
sa n god Gud! kjr Ven! or hr, kjr! T a t ll no t o
a t a l l , i t mus t g o like t h i s gode d re en r
re 2 6 In o t h e r w o r d s , w e d o have , i n fact , t h e very
same endin g a s i n Gree k an d atin . o w i f w e conside r
w h a t t h i s exclamativ e a c t u a l l y i s , sinc e i t i s no t normall y
r e g a r d e d a s a n exclamative , w e fin d t h a t i t i s t h e form
taken by adjective s whe n they occu r wit h t h e definit e
a r t i c l e , o r wit h a definit e meanin g although t h e a r t i c l e h a s
been lef t out. In t h i s definit e inflectio n of adjective s
Icelandic h a s j u s t t h r e e ending s i a u, whic h ma y a l l
conveniently b e explaine d a s havin g develope d from Greek
o for ov) . Th e endin g i occurs i n t h e masculine, j u s t a s
t h e corresponding Gree k , t h e atin an d ithuania n e i n
t h e femmin e t h e endin g i s a , whic h i s a l s o t h e correspondin g
N T N N

o at e n ree an at n n t e e ne T s a t rn s
nto n t e re a n n en n s o a s s o e n earl er
n t e ne te r t e en n s also a er es ro t e
ol ree ne te r n o o r o arn e t o e se later
t a s ot no nat e a sat e an e la at e
nas as t es e t re e ases n ar a l are ent a l n t s
en er or n l t oes not a e an eren e n t e
e ne an t e ne te r et e r t e e n t e or s ta e n
ro t e ree no nat e o r ro t e o at e t nt e
as l ne t s o o st a t t o es ro t e o at e
T s s on r e st l rt e r on ons er n T e
o letel ent a l as eo t e rs t e lens o n
tra t onall rat er t e t r e lens o n n ree an at n
n or s n a e a n t e o at e n an en t
ree s t l l a s t e no nat e an n at n re a ne so
t ro o t T e a t t at t e al an t e l ra l o
not a e a se arat e e la at e ne t e r n ree nor n
at n nor n t an an an t at on er sel t e e nt e
or o a e t e s n oeso ot o not a e a se arate
l ral or t orro t e r en n s ent rel ro t e
s ler s ste o no ns no r o t e a e an real
l ral n elan t e en n e n u t ro o t T e
a t t a t ne t e r ree no r at n no r t an an a e an
s e n te e lens on o a e t es or an t n els e
orres on n t o t alt o t s o n n al l ot
lan a e t o t e e t on o r t e rono n
t an an a a en t o a e t e s s so et n ent rel
erent a n n o n l en e on a e t e en n s o r
e lens ons erea s on ersel ne t e r elan n lo
a on or oeso ot o r an ot er Nor o r er an
ale t as an ot e r tra e o an e la at e o r an t n
else t orres on to t s or o r ss o
n or l n t e T ra an ett an la lan a es
T e a t t a t t e no nat e ro er n as als o se n
e la at ons n ree s as at
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 205

o de s j u s t a s muc h a s t h e exclamative proper in this


appears t o show clearl y t h a t t h e s e forms in and were
originally equivalent endings bot h of which wer e use d a s
nominatives and a l s o a s vocatives , bu t l a t e r differentiate d
t h e i r meaning s on e wa y in t h e Thracian language s an d i n
another, ye t very similar , wa y in t h e Gothic languages.
Moreover they a r e a l s o both use d a s exclamative s i n
elan s as li fur minn! gdur minn! gud minn gdur!
Mdir gd! a s ell as kiri minn! godi gud! an t e l e
dd t o t h i s t h a t no t j u s t adjectives , but a l s o a g r e a t
number o f nouns hav e t h i s doubl e form i n bot h r an d i Gr .
and ). See Rask' s Icelandic Grammar , p. 1, 1 . 21 .
5) Th e fact t h a t t h e vocativ e a s such i s basicall y a kin d o f
nominative, only u t t e r e d wit h passion bu t t h i s differenc e
between passionate an d dispassionat e designation i s s o
minute, especiall y i n t h e cool 2 8 orthern countrie s t h a t
i t i s no wonder if in these languages t h e passionat e
nominative change d int o t h e o r d i n a r y nominativ e i n a new
declensional system , use d primarily , however , i n exclamations
and i n definit e con texts, an d t h e r e f o r e no t unfittingl y called
t h e emphatic . 6) The fact t h a t w e a c t u a l l y discer n a
p a r t i c u l a r linguistic reason - significant effect s o f which we
have notice d twic e a l r e a d y - why t h i s old nominativ e o r
exclamative) shoul d b e adopted into a new declensional
system, and especiall y t o us e t h i s w i t h t h e a r t i c l e , namely
besides t h e fact t h a t t h i s was t h e n e a r e s t t o t h e us e of
t h e endin g i n ati n an d Greek ) t h e car e taken in o r d e r t o
avoid t h e occurrence of many w o r d s i n succession havin g t h e
same ending. ad t h i s no t happened , t h e e l a b o r a t e complex
of t h e accusative an d dativ e ending s describe d abov e woul d
a l l hav e bee n t o l i t t l e avail on e woul d s t i l l hav e ha d t o
sa hins gds manns, hinnar gdrar stlku t e oo an's
g i r l ' s ) , instea d o f t h e present ins g da anns innar g d
st l etc. in t h e remainin g cases. ha t h a s been sai d here
of t h e i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p o f t h e nominativ e an d t h e exclamative
206 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

may t h u s teac h us , i n addition , how u t t e r l y improper an d


a b s u r d the customary o r d e r i s , in whic h t h e genitive , dativ e
and accusative have bee n inserted in betwee n them .

ominative plural.

ere t h e Thracia n language s invariably hav e t h e endin g


a i n t h e neuter , whic h i s e i t h e r droppe d or become s in
orse. oth t h i n g s occu r i n Icelandic i n noun s o f t h e
simple o r d e r and t h e correspondin g definit e form o f 2 9
adjectives w e hav e requiring a vowel change e a r l i e r i n t h e
word i n noun s o f t h e comple x o r d e r an d t h e correspondin g
indefinite form of adjective s i t h a s dropped, leavin g behind ,
however, t h e change of vowe l whic h indicate s t h a t i t was
present in t h e o l d e s t s t a t e o f t h e language. nglo-Saxon
a l s o preserves t h a t same , or a varian t of i t e, an d
Moesogothic h a s a, whic h i s precisel y t h e same a s i n Gree k
and atin . I t i s peculiar how Icelandi c h a s often droppe d a
in t h o s e instances where Moesogothi c h a s kept i t , wherea s
Icelandic keeps t h e original a i n thos e cases where Moeso -
gothic h a s changed i t int o - i.e . wher e i t presumabl y had
more weigh t originally .
In t h e tw o persona l gender s o f t h e f i r s t syste m Gree k
actually h a s t h e endin g i which i s adde d t o t h e vowe l o f t h e
word formin g t h e diphthong s t h i s i might appea r t o
have give n r i s e t o t h e Icelandi c in thos e same genders i n
t h e definit e form o f adjectives, but a s t h i s occur s i n all
cases of t h e p l u r a l , i t seems much r a t h e r t o be derivable
from t h e Gree k dual in . True, Greek adjective s a r e
customarily assigne d an in t h e femmin e dual, but t h a t i s
undoubtedly a h a s t y inferenc e fro m t h e inflectio n o f nouns
in t h e tti c dialect a t l e a s t t h e dual of adjective s wa s in
a l l genders . Me n like Demosthenes an d enofo n coul d not
possibly hav e admitted p h r a s e s like v , and t h e
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 207

like, i f i t had no t been t h e n a t u r a l endin g of t h e language


such occurrences canno t possibl yb e explaine da s
carelessness i t appears , however, t o hav e i t s very n a t u r a l
motivation i n a desire t o differentiate t h e s e forms fro m t h e
neuter of 2 0 t h e p l u r a l , something whic h coul d not b e
achieved i n an y o t h e r wa y e.g . v ) , but t h i s
differentiation was no t neede d i n t h e cas e o f noun s whic h
each ha d on e gende r only . T h a t i s wh y Icelandic , whic h h a s
t h i s form in adjective s only , got in a l l genders ,
corresponding t o t h i s , and keep s t h i s unchanged
throughout t h a t i s t h e way o f in Greek excep t fo r t h e
genitive ) which, however , occur s much more r a r e l y
and was not neede d i n Icelandic , inasmuc h a s t h i s for m coul d
be expresse d sufficientl y in t h e adjoining a r t i c l e o r noun .
Thus t h e e n t i r e difference betwee n Icelandic an d Moesogothi c
in t h i s respect c o n s i s t s in Moesogothi c havin g borrowed , a s
was s t a t e d above, a l l ending s o f t h e p l u r a l fro m t h e
corresponding simpler system o f nouns , whic h meant t h a t t h e
endings have come t o b e exactl y identica l t o thos e o f noun s
and adjective s an d t h e language ver y h a r d an d abrupt
Icelandic on t h e o t h e r hand , s t r i v i n g a t a l l c o s t s t o avoi d a
frequent repetition o f t h e same endings , wit h a view t o t h i s
kept t h e ol d forms o f t h e dual which wer e no t otherwis e
needed. hen dealin g wit h t h e pronoun s w e s h a l l se e t h a t
t h e Greek dual forms have becom e p l u r a l form s i n ati n an d
t h e Gothic languages, whic h goe s t o sho w t h a t t h i s change
i s no t a ver y peculia r or unusua l one . T h i s is , b y the
way, a main differenc e between t h e Germani c an d t h e ordi c
languages which clearl y s h o w s t h a t t h e l a t t e r a r e not
derived fro m t h e former, but t h a t bot h have sprun g fro m
one source fo r althoug h we hav e observe d several singl e
instances so far o f Icelandi c bein g close r t o Greek , t h i s i s a
whole c l a s s of form s which a r e 2 1 lacking entirel y in t h e
Germanic languages, these languages having borrowe d o t h e r s
of a different origin. I n t h i s wa y i t i s a l s o possible t o
208 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

explain t h e found i n t h e neuter, making it unnecessar y t o


assume o t h e r remain s o f t h e Greek at. a i n t h e p l u r a l
than t h e vowel change, a s well a s t h e foun d in t h e f i r s t
declension o f noun s in t h e p l u r a l , whic h i s o f a different
kind an d origi n tha n t h e former fo r i t i s change d
r e g u l a r l y in t h e o t h e r cases, a s a r e t h e o t h e r ending s o f t h e
nominative, wherea s t h e foun d i n t h e definit e form o f
adjectives i s unchanging throughout in a l l gender s an d cases.
ll o t h e r p l u r a l forms in Icelandi c end in r , wit h
varying vowel s preceding ir ar r The endin g ir i s foun d
in all masculine adjectives whe n the y a r e indefinite , s i m i l a r l y
in many nouns of both masculine and feminin e gender i n t h e
5. and especiall y i n t h e 6. and . declensions th e ., 5 . and
. in Rask), but a r e primaril y c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f t h e 6.
declension an d t h u s correspon d exactly t o t h e Gree k p l u r a l
ending at. es. - In t h e . declension, a s wel l a s in
t h e femmin e o f indefinit e adjective s whic h corresponds t o it ,
t h e ol d endin g was ar , which h a s no w b y an d l a r g e been
exchanged fo r ir in nouns , but kept i n adjectives e.g. w e
find gia ar g dar allar ttar and t h e like, in t h e ol d t e x t s
a l l th e time . e hav e see n above t h a t t h e s e w o r d s
correspond t o those o f Moesogothi c i n , which ha d dropped
in thos e o f Icelandic in Moesogothi c the y a l s o have in
t h e p l u r a l , whic h shoul d correspond t o Icelandi c ar accordin g
t o t h e observation 2 2 mad e on p . 189 an d 191 . T h i s
i s t h e ithuania n s an d s of th e accusative , for in t h e
p l u r a l o f feminine s t h e accusativ e i s equa l t o t h e nominative ,
in Icelandi c a l w a y s an d i n Moesogothi c usually . nyon e
readily sees t h a t t h i s s an d s , being mer e v a r i a n t s o f one
form, i s t h e Gree k and ati n as which i n t u r n h a s n o
doubt come from t h e accusativ e singular in a i.e .
s t a n d s for a s t h e omission o f t h i s v havin g
possibly r e s u l t e d in t h e of Moesogothi c bein g emphasize d
t o t h e extent o f changing into in Moesogothi c an d bein g
preserved i n Icelandic . r o r r in t h e 8. declensio n
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 209

a ears to e a er e ar ant o t s ar n t e e n nes o


t e e lens on ar se n or t e sa e reaso n a s t e en t e
n r o r ur) ro ar, ro t ers onl n la n
a o e lo ra o tn an a l ar o el as o er a a ns t ar
a an n erent o e l a s a s r al o t e ol
a t at a rst e o e u an t e n o let e sa eare n
t e no nat e
o e er t e ar an ur o n nt e an
e lens ons er s ro t ese l ra l en n so t e
a e t es an o no n s a or n t ot e
e lens ons t see s t o a e o e a o t t e a t on o
r a s e a e st seen a s t e r e en n orre
s on n t o ree to t e en n o t e s n lar n t e
a sat e n t e n eren t o e l a o r s alrea
resent e an t t o o are t ese art lar nstan es
o t es e en n s s t l or e losel t ree t e en n
ar n t e as l ne ll e o n t o a t all orres on t o
r or ro t e s n lar o or t e
s ts o e a e seen s o an e a les ur n t e
e n ne on t e ot er an orres on s t o or ro
T e reaso n t e a e ar nt e
e lens on t ur nt s a s t e reate r e t atta e
to t n t e e lens on so et n s learl see n
ro t e a tt a t t as e t ere n t e no nat e t
ro e nt e oeso ot s larl as ere t
t t e ro e nt e
e as l nes an e n ne s a e s t l l anot e r
en n ur o a te erent or n orres on n t o ree
at us oeso an t an a n us; e ftur, l r
ftur, brdir, l r brdur o r r r r hnd, l r
hendur, also see t o elon er e as a n e real e
eans o oeso ot ere t es e or s ar e l r
l r an ot er s l e
t e
210 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

The genitive plural

ends in a i n all Icelandi c w o r d s , whic h i s adde d a l l b y


itself a t t h e en d o f w o r d s i n t h e 2., . , 5. , 6. , . , 8 .
declension. nglo-Saxo n h a s a i n t h e same instances,
Moesogothic o n t h e o t h e r hand h a s in t h e masculine an d
neuter, t h a t i s in t h e ., 5. , 6. , but in t h e femmine , t h a t
i s i n th e . and 8. declensions. I n ithuania n all geniti ves
of t h e p l u r a l end i n , which c l e a r l y i s t h e same a s , o n t h e
one hand, Moesog. and a s well a s nglo.S. an d Icel. a ,
and, o n t h e other , at. Gr. , with t h e o r v
discarded. owever ,i n th e indefinit e adjective s
corresponding t o t h e second more complex system an r is
inserted makin g t h e endin g ra nglo-Saxo n a l s o h a s ra
here, bu t Moesogothi c h a s in t h e neute r an d masculine,
i in t h e feminine. pon closer examination t h e Gree k
ending, althoug h throughout, t u r n s ou t t o replace in
t h e 1. and 2. t r a d i t i o n a l l y t h e 2 2. ) declension an d
in t h e . t r a d i t i o n a l l y t h e 1.). T h i s was contracted i n
s t a n d a r d Greek , but in ati n i t was expande d and h i a t u s
prevented b y t h e insertion of an r t h i s i s ho w t h e endings
or an d ar cam e about w e se e her e wha t i s t h e origi n
of t h e r whic h Icelandi c an d nglo-Saxo n i n s e r t
Moesogothic, accordin g t o i t s usual practice, h a s change d
t h i s r int o soft s , used between vowels) . atin h a s
lengthened t h e inheren t vowe l o f t h e wor d before t h e ending ,
but Moesogothic, whic h h a s discarded t h i s i n p r a c t i c a l l y all
o t h e r endings , h a s j u s t a s h o r t auxiliary vowel ) instead
Icelandic an d nglo-Saxo n have omitted t h a t too and kep t
t h a t whic h was suppose d t o preven t t h e clas h o f vowels , but
l o s t t h e f i r s t o f t h e collidin g vowel s whic h w a s s h o r t
originally in a s well. Se e t h e observations abov e
on p . 192 ff. on t h e origi n o f t h e femmin e genitiv e i n t h e
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 211

singular of adjectives, an d p. 195 on t h e equivalen t dative.


In t h e correspondin g nouns , i.e. in t h e 1. and . declensions
of Icelandic , w e find a different ending, na i n t h e 1., 2. , .
of ng lo-Saxon ena in Moesogothi c i n t h e neuter ,
masculine , femmine ovo. The inserted i s nothin g but
a similar means of preventing a clas h o f vowel s an d
presumably w a s initially j u s t a varyin g pronunciatio n o f r,
like Moesogothic . efore t h i s t h e Moesogoth s hav e
preserved t h e original vowel , bu t lengthene d an d thereb y
changed i n variou s ways , nglo-Saxon o n t h e o t h e r hand h a s
only an auxiliary vowel , and Icelandic , t r u e t o i t s old rule,
h a s discarde d 2 5 t h i s vowel , j u s t t h e way i t did befor e
r. ithuania n an d t h e Slavic languages hav e no t r a c e s of
these extensions, all t h e i r genitive s of t h e plural
corresponding t o t h e non-contracted Gree k form s o f the
second system i n , perhaps a l s o t o a l l t h e contracte d ones,
- t h e onl y non-equivalen t forms being t h e extended ones o f
t h e f i r s t syste m i n atin .

The dativ e o f t h e p l u r a l h a s a l r e a d y bee n discussed .

The accusative plural

equals t h e nominativ e o f t h e same numbe r in all femmin e an d


neuter w o r d s , a s wel l a s in t h e fe w masculine w o r d s having
r i n t h e p l u r a l corresponding t o Gr . v at. s , whic h i s
a l s o bot h nominative an d accusative . I n t h e masculine o f
indefinite adjectives , however , t h e endin g o f t h e accusativ e i s
a e hav e seen t h a t t h e ir o f t h e nominativ e was t h e same
a s t h e Gree k , t h u s anyon e will easily recogniz e t h i s a a s
t h e Gree k of t h e 5. or .) declension wit h t h e s d i s -
carded. I n aroes e t h i s form i s ar i.e . the missin g s h a s
come bac k a s r se e Rask' s Icelandi c Gramma r p . 2 , 1 . 2 6
212 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

ff.). Th e origi n o f t h i s form ma y a l s o be explaine d in a


different fashion, one whic h i s per haps yet mor e accurate ,
although i t appear s more remote . Th e Greek accusative s o f
t h e p l u r a l a r e formed fro m t h o s e o f t h e singular by addin g
, thus for came from ov , an d for from v,
and in t h e 5. declensio n from a , s i m i l a r l y i n atin os
for um s fro m as fo r am s fro m a is es for im s ems
from i e pproximatel y correspondin g a r e t h e forms o f
ithuanian a s well a s t h o s e o f Moesogothic , whic h a l l end i n
in t h e masculine, viz. corresponding t o t h o s e in
Greek in for , in corresponding t o Greek or
, atin ems ims whic h becam e 2 6 es is and i n to
t h e one s i n Gree k i n for and t h o s e i n ati n i n s fo r
ums. owever , a n endin g consistin g o f a vowe l an d a
consonant usually loses t h e l a t t e r in Icelandic , somethin g
which was required especiall y whe n severa l o f them r a n
together otherwise , t h e r e s u l t was a lon g ending ,
something whic h i s no t r e a d i l y acceptabl e t o Icelandic it
h a s mad e i t s form s b y t o t a l l y discardin g t h i s ns e.g. fro m
t h e adjective g dr Moesog. we get t h e p l u r a l accusative
Icel. g da Icel. st ll has the plural
accusative Icel. st la stadr a place) , p l u r a l
accusative Icel. stadi son r p l u r a l
accusative Icel. son y means o f Moesogothi c we
t h u s realiz e t h a t t h e Icelandi c p l u r a l ending i n a i n t h e
accusative o f t h e masculine bot h in adjective s an d noun s
corresponds t o Greek for Moesog. ), t h e on e i n i
to for , e.g. for - , Moesog. ), t h e
one i n to for Moesog. ) and t h a t the y a r e ,
consequently, no t v a r i a n t s o f the nominativ e p l u r a l i n ar an d
ir for t h e r e i s n o for m correspondin g t o r t h e fe w which
have t h i s endin g bein g i r r e g u l a r and keepin g i t in t h e
accusative like t h e feminines - the y a r e a l s o p a r t l y feminine
and p a r t l y have an inherent r whic h coul d no t b e dropped ,
such a s r d r genitive r dra Moreover , t h i s a l s o goe s
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 21

t o show t h a t t h e endin g i n t h e accusativ e p l u r a l of t h e 6.


in Rask t h e 5.) declension i s ol d an d i n agreemen t wit h all
t h e r e l a t e d languages, not - a s some have claime d - a
modified o r d i s t o r t e d pronunciatio n o f t h a t o t h e r endin g i n i ,
coming from t h e nominativ e i n ir whic h ma y a l s o be use d in
these w o r d s . I n addition , we may no w explai n 2 why
adjectives get a in t h e a c c , although the y had ir i n t h e
nominative, for t h i s form i s actuall y no t take n fro m t h e
nominative but fro m t h e accusativ e singular, which i n t h i s
case was an Gree k ov, i.e. in t h e p l u r a l , which i s , in
fact, t h e endin g i n Moesogothic bu t which becam e a i n
Icelandic.

either i n t h e Gothic nor in t h e Thracia n language s d o


we find a s e p a r a t e vocativ e i n t h e p l u r a l - here i t i s
t o t a l l y include d in t h e nominative . T h i s fact a s well a s a l l
t h e s t a t e m e n t s mad e abov e will have mad e i t abundantl y
clear t h a t t h e vocativ e b e a r s resemblanc e primarily t o t h e
nominative an d secondarily t o t h e accusative and t h a t
accordingly t h e o r d e r h i t h e r t o assume d i s u t t e r l y wron g an d
presumably du e t o a mere accident, t h e f i r s t grammarian
having l i s t e d them a t rando m an d a s the y happene d t o occu r
t o him. rom no w on w e should, therefore , a t a l l time s use
an o r d e r founde d upo n t h e n a t u r e o f t h i n g s , rejectin g
without any scruple s on e whic h i s completely unnatural and,
a s i t appears , t h e produc t o f shee r accident.

Degrees of comparison.

pparently, then , eac h endin g of th e Icelandic


declension can b e found a l s o in Gree k an d ati n an d i t s
origin explaine d fro m those an d t h i s i s t r u e o f bot h noun s
and adjectives bot h of t h e s e p a r t s of speec h a r e inflecte d
a l m o s t identically i n Gree k an d atin , so to o in t h e Gothic
21 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

languages, with exception s an d deviations a l l of whic h have ,


however, accordin g t o t h e preceding , sproute d from the
Thracian languages . ut beside s this inflection, or
declension proper, t h e ad jective h a s 2 8 s t i l l another , quite
special t o it , viz. t h e increment of degree s o r comparison .
The degree s themselves a r e t h e same t h r e e i n a l l o f these
languages t h u s i t i s a l l j u s t a m a t t e r of comparin g t h e
way i n whic h the y a r e denoted . Gree k form s the m i n tw o
ways, eithe r b y usin g in t h e comparativ e an d
in th e superlative , o r els e b y usin g o or )
in t h e comparativ e an d in t h e superlative . Th e
fact t h a t t h e l a t t e r i s t h e r a r e r and mor e i r r e g u l a r of t h e
two suffices t o sugges t t h e conclusion t h a t i t i s t h e oldest ,
which i s , i n fact , c o r r o b o r a t e d b y ati n whic h h a s j u s t on e
way o f expressin g increment of degrees, namely in t h e
comparative whic h corresponds exactly t o t h e second typ e o f
t h o s e j u s t reporte d for Greek - of whic h on e i s easil y
persuaded b y t h e followin g observations.
ere, a s everywher e in Greek , t h e neute r i s t h e bas e
form fro m which t h e o t h e r gender s a r e formed se e above
under t h e nominative) , a s wel l a s the othe r cases
accordingly, t h e t r u e ending o f t h e comparativ e i s xo v o r ov ,
which i s simpl y expande d i n t h e nominativ e o f t h e commo n
gender int o . In ati n t h e endin g i n t h e neute r i s i s
or s i n t h e commo n gende r ior o r or from t h e followin g
cases i t i s apparent t h a t t h i s i s i s instea d o f ios i orisi
J u s t recently we saw a proof o f t h e interchange of th e
liquid l e t t e r s r s in t h e genitiv e of t h e p l u r a l seein g a t
t h e same time ho w t h e vowe l i s usuall y extended before r ,
a s in r from . et us not, therefore , be s u r p r i s e d
that thi s short o r o in t h e o t h e r cases s t a y s s h o r t i n
Greek but is extended in atin e. g. t h e p l u r a l
corresponds t o i ra i res e t me j u s t ad d a fe w examples
of adjective s whic h a r e t h e same in t h e bot h languages an d
which a r e forme d i n Gree k in t h e o l d e s t way , t h e on e j u s t
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 215

r e f e r r e d t o , examples in 2 9 which, then , both t h e wor d


and t h e endin g correspond t o t h o s e of atin. Thu s t h e ol d
atin m n s m n or, subsequentl y li s lior h a s come
from - Tarentian - - . rom -
h a s come, by t h e insertion of n o f whic h w e hav e a l s o
had several examples , in s inor Ital. eno Th e purpos e
of t h e inserted was t o fill t h e ga p betwee n t h e vowels .
rom or h a s come l s l ra b y
a contractio n whic h i s o t h e r w i s e quite common withi n Gree k
itself. Th e reason wh y t h e r e a r e s o fe w of thes e cases in
which bot h t h e wor d an d t h e endin g agre e i n ati n an d
Greek i s t h e surviva l in Gree k o f j u s t a small numbe r o f
w o r d s s t i l i ha ving t h i s old ending , an d amon g t h o s e fe w
t h e r e a r e even some whic h a r e lackin g i n atin . Mor e migh t
well be brought t o l i g h t if ou r purpos e her e wer e t h a t o f
demonstrating t h e origin o f ati n from Greek. et me j u s t
add on e more . or t h i s w e ma y posi t )
according t o t h e s h i f t s o f t h e Gree k dialects , j u s t a s w e
find and , Dor. , and o t h e r s - and wit h
in t h e feminin e a s well , a s foun d frequent ly i n Dorie e. g.
for ) . T h i s i s undoubtedl y t h e
same word a s atin d l e d l is comparative
) at. d l i s d l ior Th e endin g s i s i n additio n
t h e endin g o f adverbs i n t h e comparative. In o t h e r w o r d s ,
atin h a s change d t h e Gree k endin g in tw o ways, e i t h e r
making v into s a s in t h e neuter, or int o r a s in a l l o t h e r
cases of t h i s degree of comparison . Th e Gothi c language s
have only on e for m i n t h e second or comparativ e degree , viz.
t h e same a s in atin excep t t h a t Moesogothi c in variably
has its for bot h s an d r o f atin, wherea s nglo-Saxon
and Icelandi c invariabl y have r, whic h appeare d t o b e t h e
main form i n atin , too, but they have no i 250 before t h e
ending - which i s ofte n missin g i n Gree k an d ati n too, a s
- in s in or I n th e adverb s nglo-Saxon
h a s t h e endin g or Icelandi c ar o r i n som e instances r,
216 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

which i s precisely Gr. ov at . s I n Icelandi c a n i or a is


added t o these endings ar an d r whe n they a r e supposed t o
become t r u e adjectives t h e former thereb y become s ari t h e
l a t t e r ri becaus e whic h was s h o r t and extraneous , i s
dropped but inasmuc h a s t h i s ri o r ari does not allo w of
any specific inflection, differin g fro m t h e r e s t o f th e
declension, t h e r e i s n o nee d t o describe i t an y f u r t h e r here .
The superlativ e i s completel y different i n atin an d
Greek i t ends i n x ov i n Greek , bu t in issi i o r
s a i n atin . T h i s ati n endin g seem s c l e a r l y t o be
t h e Greek derivationa l endin g o f adjective s ith. i a as
a s o t h a t o ti s appear s t o come from o to j u s t a s e.g .
comes from and from or
t h e ol d . The Gree k endin g x ov s i m i l a r l y appear s
t o b e t h e same a s t h e atin derivationa l endin g st s a
which likewis e seem s t o increas e t h e meanin g of t h e word ,
such a s et st exceedingly old en st ver y beautiful,
lovely ro st ver y s t r o n g , h a r d y . The endin g o f t h e
superlative i n t h e Gothic languages corresponds completely t o
t h i s derivationa l endin g o f ati n an d t h e Gree k form in x ov
. In nglo- Saxon i t i s ost i n Icelandi c e i t h e r ast
ast r st o r j u s t st st r st Th e l a t t e r shape i s t h e
genuine one , havin g com e from t h e Gree k form b y dropping
t h e auxiliar y vowel accordin g t o t h e customar y s h i f t in
Icelandic. Th e ati n endin g i s a l s o r a t h e r st st s sta
since belong s t o t h e wor d itsel f an d not a c t u a l l y t o t h e
ending t h e Icelandi c a i n ast h a s come 251 from t h e
comparative endin g ar i n o t h e r w o r d s ast i s instead o f arst
which i s a l s o foun d occasionally e.g . s d a r s t nglo-Saxo n
ost s i m i l a r l y i s fo r orst fro m or greemen t wit h t h e
Thracian language s i s s o grea t tha t an y furthe r
corroboration woul d b e besid e t h e point. owever, w e find a
number o f cases her e of identica l w o r d s havin g identica l d e -
clensions i n bot h t h e Thracia n an d t h e Gothic language
c l a s s e s - something whic h i s otherwis e quite r a r e whe n w e
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 21

have s i m i l a r i t i e s betwee n t h e s e two c l a s s e s of languages .


or t h i s reason I will take t h e l i b e r t y of l i s t i n g severa l of
these, which a r e a l s o mostl y s o i r r e g u l a r t h a t t h e i r kinshi p
may no t a t t a i n an y significant degre e o f likelihood unti l the y
a r e t h u s confronted.

t h e Thracia n languages t h e Gothic language s

1. Icel. i l i n ompounds , suc h


as i lordr talkative ,
longwinded, Germ . iel
ieler
- ov tt. - leir Sw . an d Dan . lr
at. l s
at. l res leiri Dan . lere
- lest les t r lest
2. earl. at. - i ill fo r mikilur) , accu -
g 'n s a i s short, sative i inn Dan . egen
witness agis
at. - eiri
a or

- contracted est r Dan .


este Germ, eiste
at. agis o r age more) - i g much) 252
. - parvus, exiguus ) - l g r parvus , humilis,
depressus) Dan . la
l gri Dan . la ere
- - l gst r Dan . la este
- ngloS. l ssa Eng l. lesser
o r l e s s l st se l s ta
Engl, least
218 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

. Dor. at. Icel. inni fo r m i n - r i )


minor an mindre
at minus midur o r minnur
5. - - g d r a si n
, and t h e like)
6. with inserte d - et ri ngloS . ete ra
as i n alter
and t h e like
- et r adverb)
- et r for b e t - s t u r )
ngloS. etest
. o in Icelandi c shoul d
a c t u a l l y becom e hakur) , but t h e ordi c
people sometime s pu t
for , as in l ta
, t h u s i t becam e
lakur e-lak
from Icel. la ari fro m la ar
- la ast r
8. - o v a poet. - er ri Dan . rre
ngloS. or
at. r sa drop-pin g
t e r pei-or
at. ei s - er r on e r bein g i n -
herent, t h e o t h e r instea d
of Gr . v at . s in o v s
25
at. pessimus ) - er st r ngloS . r
rest
9. or for , Germ, na e ngloS . nea
transposed ) from t h i s t h e Icelandic
adjective n inn read
na nn nnari nn-
astr closel y r e l a t e d to )
NT T T N

or nher el ontraete
nr oser
nchster n lo
nehst el ns tur
o re ote a r a a n lo feor el fiarri o r
or firri an fjrn, ro
t e elan er
at f irra or fyrra
re o e
ro el fir art er
e a os t
or first n lo fyrrest
or an t e hardur er hart
a e t e stron
o er l t kartus
stron tter
or hardar er hrter
or el at herda)
hardastur
' or t stur an sd
t a n nserte 1
saldus
star stastur
Venus a t all a n a e vnn o r n r
t e st a s vetus) aroes e v nur
venustus - vnstur
or at pro or ol for an fur t s t l l
pri, ro pridie n o o n s for
pridem an se era l ro fyrir fyrri
ot ers fyrrum
t pirm at prius fyrr s fyr-ri, n
prior; t s s t e onl t e rs t r s
ase n ree a s n erent orres on n
st nstea o o n to an r n an
t e o arat e erea s prius prior, t e se on
220 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

in Icelandi c we ofte n i s instea d o f t h e Gr . v


find t h e correspondin g at. s o r r
pure r o r r fo r ar
or p r i s t u s ) thoug h - rst r ngloS. rst
not foun d h a s without s e rsta
doubt existed an d lef t
behind t h e at . risti
n s whic h does not
allow o f an y f u r t h e r
increment of degrees .
The r e g u l a r an d usua l
degrees - -
)
a r e forme d accordin g t o
t h e former o f t h e tw o
methods described , whic h
i s no t bein g discusse d
here 255 1
at pri-mus t pirmas, n lo se forma; ro
in ompound s ri i ge t h i s t h e Icelandic p r e -
n i t u s ith . ir gi es fi x i n derive d w o r d s
prim-vus prinkeps an frum s as frumefni
several more like the m ele ent r g tinn the
f i r s t - b o r n , an d severa l
others.

T h i s word may a c t u a l l y belon g with t h e numerals, but


a s i t i s evidentl y forme d b y increment of degrees , I have
l i s t e d i t here , no t l e a s t because i t i s , a s f a r a s I have bee n
able t o ascertain , t h e only instanc e of t r a c e s found i n
Scandinavian o f t h e atin superlative i n i s o r t h e Gree k
ending w whereas many of t h e s e adjec tives hav e i as i n
ithuanian. Th e t r u e atin adjective s have onl y t h e second
degree i n commo n wit h Icelandic , an d t h i s the y a l l have it
does not, therefore , see m necessar y t o l i s t them here , t h e
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 221

agreement bein g beside s evident a l l by itself, e. g. a er


a rior Icel . ag r agrar i Germ, ager agrer etc.
ccordingly, the y shoul d be l i s t e d amon g t h e o t h e r w o r d s
common t o bot h languages , and , i n fact, onl y in t h e f i r s t
degree.

The pronouns

although considere d b y som e t o b e t h e l a s t p a r t o f speech


t o emerge, a c t u a l l y appea r i n most instances t o exhibi t t h e
very o l d e s t remain s of languages . I n Englis h an d Danish
they hold man y t r a c e s of cases t h a t hav e o t h e r w i s e
completely disappeare d fro m the language, t h e same i s t r u e
of Icelandic, ati n an d Gree k - nay, even t h e pronouns of
ebrew hav e such remains so, whil e the y ma y wel l b e
those mos t recentl y invented , the y a r e , o n t h e o t h e r hand,
a l s o t h e l a s t ones l o s t , an d t h u s full y a s importan t a s an y
o t h e r p a r t o f speec h a s fa r a s examinin g t h e origi n o f
language i s concerned. In r e t u r n , t h e many 256 individual
t r a c e s of old inflections make them so i r r e g u l a r t h a t the y
will have t o b e examine d on e b y one , j u s t a s in t h e cas e o f
t h e adjectival degree s above.

The first person.

t h e Thracia n language s t h e Gothic languages

15. at. ego ith . Icel .e o r eg Sw . ag wit h


as i s t h e same word, t h e usua i discardin g o f
with s or or g se e t h e fina l vowe l
p. 16 ), s i m i l a r l y
Russ. a olis h a
with g og discar -
222 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

ded
16. - or at. e i or ig ngloS . m e
The Greeks coul d no t aroes e e Germ, i
pronounce or at
the en d o f w o r d s , bu t
when t h a t was dropped,
i became e , j u s t a s
fortis forte, an t e
like t h e Icelandi c
or, i n general , Gothic
form i s t h u s n o doubt
t h e o l d e s t here
- or i s t h e bas e Icel . wit h inser ted
form fro m whic h n Moesog.
i s contracted, an d from ) ith.
and poet . - or anes
read m o) e x -
panded, at. i
- or Dor. - Moesog. Germ, ir Icel .
r ith. man, by the
same change o f into s
and r 25 which we
have j u s t ha d so many
examples o f in th e
genitive p l u r a l an d the
second degre e of
adjectives
1 . or in t h e nomi - Moesog. Germ, ns
native an d accusativ e Dutch ons Icel. oss are
dual, at. n s i s t h e bot h accusativ e and
nominative an d accusa - dativ e
tive o f t h e p l u r a l ,
I t a l . noi olish an d
Russ. nas oh . n s
a r e accusativ e and
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 223

genitive
i in t h e genitive ) wit hr for Moesog. -
Germ. nser ngloS .
ser
i in t h e dative ) Moesog.
at. no is wit h s
for n
18. Dor. - or Moesog. Germ, ir Icel .
- ith. es r ngloS . e
Dor. - Icel. r o r or
Dor. - in t h e dual Icel . id ngloS. an d
ith. dd o r e d Moesog . . The o t h e r
composed wit h d two ) cases o f t h i s word i n
t h e dual a r e
ebrew ' o i I, ' n a Moesog . ngloS.
nu or na n we, a p - n Icel .o r gen.
pears t o b e connect- ngloS . n er Icel .
ed t o o r fo r o ar whic h presup -
onkur) a t an y r a t e , pos e a further sepa -
t h e r e i s scarcel y r a t e r o o t form. 258
anything in t h e T h r a -
cian, ettic, Slavic,
or inni c language s
with whic h i t ma y b e
classed.

The second person.

19. Dor. v at . and Moesog. ngloS. an d


ith. t olish an d Icel . Sw. , Dan. an d
Russ. t Germ, d
Dor. at. te Icel . i o r ig ngloS. e
aroese te
Dor. is also the Moesog.
22 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

accusative
Dor. or Moesog., keeping ,
Germ. dir Icel . r
contracted Dor. Moesog. with inserted
poetic expansion Icel. n
- - )
20. or is th e Moesog. i n the dual
nomin. an d accus . ngloS . git old Icel. id
dual, at. os is th e Moesog. i n the plura l
nominative plural, ngloS. ge Germ.
Ital. oi rom this r old Icel . r Moesog.
Russian and olis h i n the gen. ,
in the nominativ e and shoul d rathe r be
as in th e accusative , classe d wit h , but
and th e ithuania n th e ati n adj. ester
dual ju-du,which has show s that th e vowe l
s in th e plural formed has also been e 259
formed lik e Gr .
o Dor. - -
21. Dor. in th e ngloS . eo i Icel . dr
accusative Moesog.
- eo Icel . d r Moesog.

eover el ydar ydvar


Moesog.

In ithuania n al l cases in the dual an d plural seem t o


be derive d mor e regular ly fro m a single bas e form , viz.
and s correspondin gt o s an d i n th e Slavic
languages wher e th e dual is missin g th e plura l a t an y rate
comes form one singl e form. The other case s of th e second
person dual i n Icelandi c r ar ngloS . in in er
Moesog. v or ) apparently do not fin d thei r origi n
in the Thracian , ettic, Slavic or inni c languages.
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 225

The third person

agreed wit h t h e tw o f i r s t persons in inflectio n i n t h e ol d


Greek language , viz. , which subsequentl y becam e reflexive
or relative , o r per haps r a t h e r , which l a t e r hav e turne d
into t h e a r t i c l e , another wor d o self) havin g been
acquired for t h e . person. The o t h e r case forms a t f i r s t
became reflexive, then, a s anothe r genuinel y reflexive pronoun
o e t c . w a s formed, 260 i t p r a c t i c a l l y disappeare d
from t h e language. recisely t h e same thing i s t r u e of t h e
Gothic languages, except t h a t t h e t w o bas e forms o f Greek,
one o f whic h i s foun d i n t h e singular, t h e o t h e r i n t h e
p l u r a l and dual, a r e distinguishe d i n t h e o t h e r language s a s
two quite different w o r d s - which i s perhap s t h e original
state o f affairs .

t h e Thracia n language s t h e Gothic languages

22. ) evidently d o Moesog. or femmin e


not belong t o t h e Germ. sie Engl .
neuter of t h e a r t i c l e s e ngloS . se s o
for t h i s i s a bas e Icel . s s in t h e com -
form fro m which t h e mon gender si h a s
masculine and feminin e been considered , in a l l
would hav e t o become these languages, a s in
) or ), which Greek , t o b e t h e nomi -
did in fac t a l s o happen, native o f t h e a r t i c l e
judging by t h e Doric ad from whic h i t i s ,
plural and t h e however , clearly differ -
regular ithuanian tas en t in i t s origin . Th e
t . e migh t r a t h e r a r t i c l e a l s o h a s i t s full
compare i t t o ebre w for m i n Germa n der die
z zo/zu zp an r a das o r dat). t s a
bic i t t o which peculiar faet t h a t t h i s
226 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

i t appear s t o bea r a pronou n h a s n o neute r


very clea r an d clos e neithe r i n Gree k no r
relationship, a s wel l a s i n t h e Gothi c l a n g u a -
a l s o t h e correspondin g ges, which seem s t o i n -
Gothic forms . I n dicat e t h a t i t wa s o r i -
atin and t h e etti c ginall y destine d t o d e -
and Slavi c language s s gnate a person , wh o
t h i s nominativ e i s coul d no t r e a l l y 261
e n t i r e l y lackin g b e considere d t o b e
neuter, bu t i n additio n
seems t o poin t t o i t s
descent fro m a l a n -
guage i n whic h e v e r y -
thing i s believe d t o b e
alive an d animat e an d
in whic h t h e neute r i s
missing
at. se ith. e x - el si or sig Moesog.
panded sa Sw . an d Dan . sig Germ.
si
o fro m whic h iv may b e - s r Moesog. from
posited i n agreemen t whic h Danis h s r
with t h e o t h e r p e r -
sons)
contracted o r u- sn Moesog.
expanded poet , -
o o x i n t h e p l u r a l ma y
be compare d t o Germ . sie Dutch

In atin , ithuanian , Moesogothi c an d Icelandic , t h e s e


forms o r t h e i r equivalent s a r e use d also , excep t fo r t h e
nominative whic h i s lacking , indifferentl y i n t h e dua l an d
p l u r a l , wher e Greek , o n t h e o t h e r hand , h a s a s e p a r a t e form .
ut befor e I commen t o n t h i s , i t woul d perhap s b e useful ,
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 22

by way of a summary, t o l i s t all of t h e i r r e g u l a r pronouns


mentioned so f a r i n a brief t a b l e , vice versa , from Icelandi c
t o t h e Thracia n language s se e p . 228).

The person j u s t r e f e r r e d t o - t h e t h i r d - i s , fo r on e
thing, incomplet e a s f a r a s expressing an d distinguishin g
gender an d numbe r i s concerned, and, for another, i t h a s
eventually com e t o b e use d mostl y a s a reflexive pronoun
another mor e complet e word , whic h s t r i c t l y speakin g r e f e r r e d
26 1 originally t o t h e . person*), having bee n adopted t o
denote t h e t h i r d p e r s o n , - t h e caus e bein g t h a t t h e p e r s o n s

*) To be true, this . grammatical person, mentioned by Rask in his Icelandic Gramma r p.


96 ff.), but so fa r overlooke d by othe r grammarians , was renounced b y the German reviewe r -
claiming that we might be equally justified i n assuming a 5. or 6. person and so fortn, as many as one
might fancy nevertheless , this is undoubtedly the truth of the matter. n e cannot possibl y imagine
more than four persons in one singl e sentence. or although any numbe r of subject s or objects ma y
be added by means of and or other conjunctions, the result i s nothing but ne w elliptical sentences -
even if the onnecting link is omitted by asyndeton. ccordingly , severa l thir d or fourt h persons
emerge, and, just as in the case of the two other persons, we may, quite naturally, imagine an infinite
number o f individuals of bot h o f them , who , however , can in n o way be calle d person s in a
grammatical sense, although the may be so in a physical sense e.g . if we say I must tell you that
told that ha d visited D in the evening an d me t E there an d mad e a n appointmen t wit h him , -
anyone will understand that the sentence ends with and that is the third person and the fourth
here a new sentence starts whic h i s dependent on th e previous on e bein g connected to i t b y the
conjunction t at i n this sentence is the third person and D the fourth. This sentence comes to an
end with the word e ening anothe r start s being joined with and i n this the third person i s the same
as in th e preceding sentence and therefor e omitted , whereas E i s the fourth. Eve n i f continue d ad
in init although w e ma y have many physical persons , we could no t possible get more than fou r
grammatical ones for i f we decide d t o label what i s found i n complex sentence s a s thes e furthe r
persons, we would also have to talk about mor e persons e.g. i n the following May I ask yo u to sit
there, you there, you there etc., while it obviously i s nothing but different individuals of the second
person grammatically speaking . I n th e Greenlandic languag e nature itsel f provides evidence tha t
there are, in fact, four grammatica l persons, although th e fourt h i s not, however, easil y distinguish -
able from the third in the nominative fo r in that language endings are found for all , for of them
as subjec t a s i n Gree k an d atin, and for all as objects . ay , the y ar e actuall y presen t i n al l
languages, though the . and . may be more or less clearly distinct - and also may be distinguishe d
in several ways. sig and sin were not originally intended as mere reflexive pronouns , as one readily
infers from the perfec t agreement observed between the m an d th e othe r persons ig in dig din
which are reflexive no more than other words of the language when the subject happens also to be the
object of the sentence. It may be deduced also from the fact that the two first persons have no reflex-
ive pronouns, from which it appears reasonable tha t the third person did not have any either , i n the
original condition of th e language, but tha t the wor d whic h eventuall y acquired this meaning was
merely personal in the very oldest times, like the two others which it parallels completely. inally,
irst erson Second erson Third erson
Singular
. g at . ego Gr. ith. and at . t Gr. Dor. s s Germ. sie Gr .
. ig ngloS . and at . e Gr. - ig ngloS . e at. te Dor . sig ith. e Gr .
D. rG . ir Moesog . Dor. - r Germ . dir Dor. s r Moesog. Gr. v) o
G. n Moesog . poet. - - n Moesog. poet. sin Moesog . poet.
)
Dual lur. Germ. sie Gr . o
. id ith. e d d Dor . id Moesog. an d ngloS .
git ith . d
.D. o r Moesog. , per- r
haps ebre w na n ar at. os
G. o ar
It. oi
lural Gr.
. r Moesog. ith. es rG . r Moesog . an d
Dor. - ith. s
.D. oss Dutch ons at . nos Gr. d r d r eo i Dor.
ngloS. eo Dor.
G. r or Dor . - dar d ar ngloS . eo er G r .
228
T ES R E T E G T IG G GE S 229

in question can r a r e l y b e distinguishe d in t h e nominativ e an d


26 consequently a r e easil y mixed u p in th e o t h e r cases
also. In Gree k t h i s wor d w a s o o , which
appears t o have bee n formed 265 fro m t h e a r t i c l e i n i t s
o l d e s t mor e complet e shape ) and i s lackin g in t h e
r e l a t e d languages wherea s i n ati n i t was a n old r o o t
word id is ea whic h in t h e neuter an d masculine singular i s
probably t h e same wor d a s t h e on e o f whic h t h e Greek s j u s t
kept t h e dual and t h e p l u r a l t o supplemen t t h e t h i r d person
j u s t r e f e r r e d to however , in t h e femmin e an d t h e p l u r a l i t
appears t o be a form which h a s been derive d l a t e r , belongin g
t o t h e f i r s t declension, wherea s t h e ol d form goes by t h e
second. Th e Greek s have a t f i r s t prefixe d t h e digamm a an d
then an additional s a s i n o for , for
tego bu t i n ati n a l l a s p i r a t i o n h a s been omitted . I n t h e
ettic an d Gothic languages w e a l s o find , without aspiration
or with varyin g degrees thereof , e.g . German er , which i s
t h e on e mos t similar t o ati n is ngloS. e wit h discarded
s or r, ith . is whic h r e l a t e s t o t h e Gree k form wit h

from the fact tha t thi s word s s i sig s r s n i s actuall y ofte n use d i n thi s way , a s a persona l
pronoun, in the old language - this being, however, much more frequent still in the oldest Greek wit h
its corresponding o . ccordingly, i t can scarcel y b e disputed b y anyon e tha t under -
stands this . The ide a is this ancien t Gree k ha d personal pronouns or ) and
o , of which the . and . were equivalent in the nominative . Thi s led to their eventually bein g
mixed up in the other cases as well, the . remaining in use only in case the . grammatical person
was both subject an d object reflexive), about a s in atin an d in Icelandic o f the present day but
f nally, as a trul y reflexive word was formed t o this person , in th e same wa y a s t o the other tw o
persons, v ov , it fell into disuse entirely, the structure in Greek becoming i n
the end the same as in English wit h i sel t sel sel o w there wer e just persons, but in
addition reflexive pronouns, one for each replacin g the persons and no reflexive pronoun in the
oldest language. s also observed by Rask in the said place, pedantic grammars have in more recent
times wanted to break up the old word which served as the pronoun for the third person in the oldest
Greek or decompose it into two words by accentuating it differently whe n used in the reflexive sens e
from whe n i t was used personall y - in th e same wa y tha t the y like to differentiat e e.g .
o , etc., notwithstanding the fact tha t i t i s obviousl y the same word , whic h ma y hav e
several meanings , as in all other languages. gains t thi s the Danish reviewer in the learned Gazette
quotes Demosthenes , wh o canno t b e blame d fo r pedantry bu t i n s o doin g he ha s either
misunderstood this , as so many other things in his author, or else he must depart from the commonly
held suppositions concerning the origin and the misuse of the Greek accents.
2 0 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

just a s t o in th e dual of th e second person. ut


t h e r e i s no nee d t o assume t h i s i n o r d e r t o se e t h e
s i m i l a r i t y betwee n t h e atin pronou n an d t h e correspondin g
one in Gothic accordingly, I will let m y r e a d e r p a s s h i s
own judgmen t o n t h i s , observin g onl y t h a t w e find t r a c e s of
t h e singular of t h i s wor d i n Greek , too, namely 1) The
Doric accusative v v or v instea d of o o . It
should actuall y b e v), but h a s been expanded e i t h e r int o
v v, by prefixing t h e 266 same consonant a s foliowe d t h e
vowel, a s in for ) Icel. a i at . a s an d in
for ) Icel. a a grandmother) , an d t h e like, o r
else into by appendin g in front , whic h i s no t t h a t r a r e
in Gree k either , e.g . for eol . , for )
Dor. , and o t h e r s . T h i s old v) i s foun d i n i t s
original shap e in t h e ol d at. i e fo r e whic h i s foun d
in t h e aw s o f t h e twelve T a b l e t s , s i m i l a r l y i n German i n
ngloS. ine and o t h e r Gothic language s - o f whic h more
presently. 2) The ol d poeti c , which - althoug h i t
should sometime s be t r a n s a t e d mightily , formidabl y -
seems a l s o frequently t o b e t h e same a s at . i i t h a t i s
t h e ol d locativ e of t h i s word. I t i s a l s o sometimes foun d
without , a s for or in th e Dori c dialect . -

t h e Thracia n language s t h e Gothic languages

2 . at. id i n t h e nomina - Moesog. ngloS. it


tive an d accusative Dutc h et Germ. e s
of th e neute r
at. is i n t h e nomina - - Germ. e r ngloS. e
tive o f t h e masculine with discarde d r )
ith. is
Gr. vx v for xv) old - Germ. i n ngloS .
at. i e an d ith . ine
ji
T ES R E T E G T IG G GES 2 1

) at. i i i th. - Germ. i ngloS .


loc. a e d a t . i Engl. i al l
dative masculines
ei i th. d a t . of t h e - expande d ngloS.
feminine ei ire Germ. i r
ei s i th. in t h e mascu- - in t h e masculine c o n t r a c -
line o femmine os te d , in t h e femmin e
expanded 26 ,
ngloS. an d Engl. i n t h e
masculine contracted is
in t h e femmin e ngloS .
ire Engl. er Germ . i n
t e e ihrer ihr.

In Icelandi c t h e r e a r e only two remain s o f t h i s word ,


namely ed an d er , fro m t h e atin an d Germanic nominativ e
es er id is these w o r d s ed an d er a r e use d a s r e l a t i v e
p a r t i c l e s , without any difference in gende r an d number . It
comes a s n o s u r p r i s e t o us t h a t the y have acquired t h i s
r e l a t i v e meaning, whe n w e r e c a l i ho w ofte n t h e t h i r d person
i s mixe d u p wit h t h e r e l a t i v e pronou n i n Gree k an d o t h e r old
languages nay , ann i s use d ver y frequentl y in a relative
sense even in th e Icelandic ibl e t r a n s l a t i o n se e Ras k p .
102).
ell, a s w e hav e seen , t h i s fourt h perso n i s almost
t o t a l l y lackin g in t h e ordic languages , an d what l i t t l e
remains of i t in Icelandi c h a s taken on a r e l a t i v e meaning
however, these languages hav e anothe r wor d fo r t h e fourth
person, viz. ann n which i s no t foun d i n Greek .
I n t e r e s t i n g l y t h i s wor d lacks t h e neuter, j u s t a s s an d s
and t h a t i t differentiate s t h e persona l genders b y mean s o f
t h e same vowe l change t h i s woul d lea d u s t o see k i t s
origin in a language whic h lacks t h e neuter an d fro m whic h
s an d s seems t o come. nd i n fac t w e fin d in t h e
riental languages ebr . ' he' 'she ' rabi c a 'he '
2 2 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

i a 'she', t o whic h i t appears no t imprope r t o refer bot h


at. i i s i n and ord. an an d n In ati n
they have added a which i s , however , spurious , a s ca n b e
seen fro m the o t h e r cases wherea s the orsemen, a s so
often, ad d a n. There i s no conflict with wha t was sai d
above p . 102 and 126 concerning a s i m i l a r i t y of thes e w o r d s
with 2681 t h e Slavic and inni c languages fo r the y ma y
a l l hav e draw n them from t h e same source an d changed the m
l a t e r i n variou s ways , eac h accordin g t o i t s n a t u r e an d
system.
The ossessi e rono ns a r e a l l derive d from t h e
personal pronouns an d inflecte d a s o r d i n a r y adjectives .
Their agreemen t i n t h e Thracia n an d Gothic languages t h u s
follows from t h a t o f t h e personal ones, j u s t a s t h e i r
s i m i l a r i t y i n thes e language s a s fa r a s declension i s
concerned i s t h e same a s wa s t r e a t e d previously .

The demonstrative pronouns

I t i s correc t t o include among thes e a l s o t h e a r t i c l e


or, a s on e migh t call i t t h e demonstrative, whic h i s no t
r i g h t l y assume d t o c o n s t i t u t e a s e p a r a t e p a r t o f speech.
The Greek a r t i c l e is completely r e g u l a r except t h a t i t lack s
t h e masculine and feminin e o f t h e nominative . Since I have
not l i s t e d an y exampl e i n t h e foregoin g o f t h e s i m i l a r i t y i n
inflections o f t h e adjectives, I am goin g t o compare t h i s i n
all i t s ending s wit h t h a t o f Icelandic se e p . 2 ).
f o t h e r language s I have only l i s t e d t h e most
indispensable intervenin g links. n e thing , i n p a r t i c u l a r ,
makes t h e s i m i l a r i t y betwee n t h e Gree k an d Icelandi c
declensions l e s s s t r i k i n g than i t actuall y i s otherwise, an d
also, in fact, i s seen t o b e whe n j u s t th e ending s a r e
compared the circums tance t h a t t h e two s y s t e m s do not
correspond closely thi s mean s t h a t althoug h t h e same
2 . eute r an d masculin e eminine

Singular
om. fo r Icel . ad cc. Dor . ith . t Icel .
cc. fo r Icel . ad Gen. Dor . Moesog . extende d
Icel . ann Icel. eirrar a f t e r th e secon d s y s -
Gen. afte r th e 1 . system ) Icel . ess tem i n Icelandi c an d Moesogothi c
after th e second )
Dat. fo r ) ith . d a t . t instr . Dat. fo r ) Moesog . Icel .
t rni o r t Icel . ei eirri

lural
om, an d acc . ngloS . a Icel . a om. Dor. , Icel . r
om.mase. Dor . Moesog . Icel . eir
after th e secon d system )
cc.masc, Dor . Icel . cc. ith . tas Icel . r
Gen. contr . Moesog . extende d Gen. Moesog . extende d Icel .
Icel. eirra eirra
dat. tie 's to s
Dat. ith . Icel. ei Dat. ith . Icel. ei
i n s t r . tais to is
2
2 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

endings a r e foun d i n bot h languages, they a r e not foun d i n


t h e same instances. ne will have t o imagine t h a t t h e
datives of t h i s wor d were expanded f i r s t t o fo r -
) from whic h ith . t i t and in t h e p l u r a l
for ) , from whic h ith . tie ' s to s to is 2 0
and Icel . ei ngloS . a Moesog. in t h e singular,
in t h e p l u r a l a similar expansion h a s taken place in
t h e genitiv e an d dativ e singular of t h e femmin e an d i n t h e
genitive p l u r a l in all gender s t h r o u g h t h e insertion of or
r e. g. or t a r i ) ngloS . re Icel. eirri
etta from ad essi fo r ersi a l s o foun d in t h e
poets, i s obviousl y formed from t h e a r t i c l e an d confirm s i t s
p r i o r compieteness i n orse, a s wel l a s i n Germa n an d
ithuanian. In t h e same wa y Gree k w a s probabl y
formed from t h e ol d a r t i c l e , without, however , havin g an y
f u r t h e r connection t o orse o n t h e o t h e r hand , comparin g
t h e ta si sa etc . whic h i s appende d i n Icelandic , wit h Gree k
in o , which h a s t h e same meaning, and perhap s
with ati n s e i n i se fro m olde r i s fo r is he, i t ) , -
might no t b e a n a l t o g e t h e r unlikel y thin g t o do .

t h e Thracia n languages t h e Gothic languages

25. Ion. Moesog. Germ. ener


Dor. Icel. inn or in r
26. Icel. sa r also Slavic).

lthough i t does not r e a l l y concern ou r topic , s t i l l I


must a l s o make a not e of t h e s i m i l a r i t y betwee n ati n te
e.g. s a te an d t h e ithuania n pronou n atis o r ats self,
from which i t appear s t o b e a contraction.
T ES R E T E G T IG G GE S 2 5

The relative and interrogative pronoun s

begin wit h i n atin , j u s t a s wit h o r i n th e ordic


languages but in Gree k the y a r e differentiated , t h e r e l a t i v e
pronouns 2 1 beginning with j u s t ' ) the interrogatives
with j u s t , in c o n t r a s t t o t h e demonstratives wit h
t h e r e i s no nee d t o conside r thos e o f ati n an d o f
Scandinavian t o b e a merge r o f t h e two , for i t i s a
s t a n d a r d s h i f t for bot h ' an d , sometimes eve n t o becom e
o r eve n fro m on e Gree k dialect t o another , e.g .
and , Dor. and , and many o t h e r s .

t h e Thracia n languages t h e Gothic languages

2 . i s t h e Gree k Moesog. Icel. ad cor-


r e l a t i v e pronoun an d respondin g t o od i n
) t h e ol d t h e neuter) , Moesog.
interrogative, from Icel. ol d ar t o
which f u r t h e r ith. as old Gree k
, and t h e like or and ).
from t h e n e u - t e r In nglo-Saxon an d
and ) t h e atin od Moesogothi c many more
which seem s t o p r e - ending s a r e foun d o f
suppose qvu s qva , o f t h i s word , se e a l s o
which, however , onl y Ras k p . 2 5 fro m t h i s
a fe w remains a r e Danish o Sw . o
o n t kas ? hvad er wer) was,
and t h e like.
28. became t h e com- Icel . ert er later r
mon interrogative, Germ . er
from t h i s wit h or
for at. id is
i how , G r . - how, why ) Germ. ie
2 6 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

2 9. Moesog. Icel. l
qvalis r Germ. el er 2 2

0. talis dylik el pvlkur


Germ. solcher)
1. el hvadan
2. padan.

True, t h e tw o l a t t e r a r e adverbs , bu t l i s t i n g the m


here seem s no t improper , a s the y a r e forme d i n t h e sam e
way a s t h e pronouns , an d fro m t h e sam e bas e forms .

The indefinite numerals .

. o ) Moesog. ngloS.
hvper el hvr
. ter Dor . ngloS . o er a er or a er
alter wit h Icel . i n t h e plur . adrir
inserted i) for a l - Germ. ander Icel . i n t h e
t e r u s ) ith . a ntras sing. annar
secundus)
at neuter - nauper naper
6. - g er by contraction )
. - nig Germ. einige

have a l r e a d y bee n l i s t e d o n p .
21 ..

The cardinals.

8. for ) ith. Moesog. read


T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 2

ienas old eol. ) Icel. eitt


vov Germ. eins eines
old at. oino later in t h e mascul . einn
n etc. Germ . einer
9. ) at. d o Moesog. Icel.
du ith . d d i t t eir t r 2
0. at. tria Moesog. neute r Icel.
tres ith. tr s ri r r r ar
1. - Dor.
- , from whic h ith .
et ri an d at. a
t or Gr . poet . -
, from which , with
for Moesog. , in
ompounds , and,
with g fo r d Icel .
i g r in t h e neuter,
ngloS. eo er
lso , from
which, wit h discard-
ed, a s so ofte n in
Greek, apparent ly Icel. i rir i n t h e masculine,
i rar i n t h e femmine .
2. ith. en at.
qvin ve eol . .
rom t h i s comes Moesog. Icel. i
Germ. n
. at. s e x ith . - Icel. s e x Germ .
s es i ebre w se s
. at. se te ith . - Germ. sie en
se t ni ebre w s a ' ngloS. seo on Icel. si
5. at. o to ith . - Germ. a t ngloS .
as t ni with s ea ta Icel . tta
for
6. - at. no e wit h - Germ. ne n ngloS.
2 8 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

o for , inserted nigon Icel . n


or digamm a an d e
for a ith. de ni
. x at. de e i th. - Germ. e n Icel .
deszimti tiu.

2 ompare with t h i s wha t wa s sai d abou t t h e s i m i l a r i t y


with t h e Slavic language s on pp . 12 ff.
le en an d t el e appea r t o b e base w o r d s like the
preceding, bu t s t i l l a r e not Icel . elli t l ngloS . e n -
leo an t e l e Moesog . or a r e compose d o f ' one'
and ' t o' wit h t h e verb Icel . lei a leave over Gree k
. In t h i s manne r all t h e numerals of ithxiania n fro m
10 t o 2 0 a r e forme d fro m li or lie i t h e same a s g
leifi; e wieno-lika ele en dwylika t el e trylika t r
teen), a s i f on e left over o r above , tw o over , t h r e e ove r
t e ten t h a t i s ) . S o t h a t althoug h these w o r d s a r e formed
differently from Greek, the y s t i l i d o consis t o f p a r t s whic h
a r e all foun d i n Greek . - The followin g a r e compose d o f
t n ti n which i s an old form o f 10 , i n o t h e r w o r d s
they a r e forme d in agreemen t wit h Greek an d atin .
In or dic t h e tens a r e forme d b y addin g t ten ) o r
t gr decade) t o t h e d i g i t s , s i m i l a r l y in t h e Germani c l a n -
guages an d i n ithuanian i n Gree k an d ati n the y seem , a t
f i r s t glance, t o b e specific w o r d s o r endings , but a r e i n fac t
undoubtedly j u s t different forms an d v a r i a n t s o f on e an d t h e
same word, which originally meant a ten , l a t e r t h e tenth te n
or on e hundred , in p a r t i c u l a r . T h i s i s perhap s b e s t see n
from t h e word fo r t e n t i n Gree k i t i s x , whose
ending i s clearl y t h e same a s t h a t o f x , etc., bu t
for t h e Dorian s s a y or read kati), i n
which t h e endin g o r r a t h e r t h e main p a r t of t h e wor d i s
clearly th e same a s in o but t h i s i s a l s o , wit h
a chang e o f t o in t h e ati n i inti o r iginti 2 5 which
a l s o h a s a clear connection wit h d enti adringenti an d
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 2 9

ent Th e Gree k form or found i n th e o t h e r


tens i s a l s o j u s t a variant of t h i s . These tens i n
ginta ma y f u r t h e r be compare d with t h e nd o f nglo-
Saxon, whic h i s afffixe d t o t h e beginnin g o f t h e l a s t tens
over 60, such a s nd seo ontig nd ea tatig etc., bu t
t o t h e end of the hundreds t a nd reo nd an d the
like s i m i l a r l y Moesogothi c h , which i s adde d behin d
t h e l a s t tens, a s in 0)
, 80), a s wel l a s , which i s adde d behin d
t h e hundreds, such a s o , trekenta)
in o t h e r w o r d s , i t i s no t j u s t t h e wa y i n whic h these w o r d s
a r e formed which a g r e e s in t h e Thracia n an d t h e ol d
Germanic languages , but a l s o t h e form or endin g itself .
Thus w e ma y compar e

8. - at. ent Moesog. ngloS. nd


ith. s i tas whic h o r nd red Icel . nd
is masculine, because o r ndrad Dan . nd-
t h i s language lacks rede Germ . ndert
t h e neute r i n nouns) , an d others .
and th e r e l a t e d e n d -
ing o f t h e tens
ginta

The ordinal s

a r e mostl y sprun g from the corresponding cardinals


accordingly, t h e r e i s o f need s a basi c relationshi p between
t h e l a t t e r wheneve r t h a t h o l d s fo r t h e former.
ri i th. ir a Icel . rst hav e been discusse d o n p . 219
ff. i t doe s not come from v, i n th e Gothic languages
s i m i l a r l y i t does not come 2 6 fro m t h e name for t h e unit ,
t h e same applie s t o Icelandic annar Germ. ander i th. a n t r a s
at. alter for a l t e r u s ) , of whic h w a s spoke n on p .
2 0 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

2 6. Greek , however, seem s like a higher degre e of


an old wor d ), which corresponds t o Dutc h t eede
German eite The r e s t all hav e th e same root, bu t
sometimes differen t endings enumeration i s superfluous , a s
they exhibi t no new r e l a t e d base w o r d s . It was surely
noted both i n the cas e o f t h i s a s o f t h e indefinit e
numerals j u s t mentione d above p . 2 6) t h a t pronoun s whic h
used abou t a subject o f t h e dual often adop t t h e endin g o f
t h e second degree, , . . o ,
which correspond s t o atin nos ter es ter and ng lo-Saxon
er g er etc., - t h i s endin g t h u s no t bein g t o t a l l y
alien t o t h e Gothic language s a f t e r a l l .
inally, t h e r e i s a noteworth y agreement betwee n t h e
atin d i s t r i b u t i v e s ini for din i o r duini ) terni ater ni
and t h e Icelandic t ennir rennir ernir whic h a l s o have
s i n g u l a r e t ennr rennr ern a s wel l a s t h e tw o adverbs
is Gr . and tris Gr . , and t h e Icel . t is ar o r
t s ar an d ris ar Th e appende d endin g ar i s usual ly
derived fro m ar turn , time .

The verbs

fall int o tw o closel y correspondin g main type s in a l l Gothic ,


ettic an d Thracia n languages . See p. 59, 1 , 1 2 and
foll.). ne i s easil y persuade d o f the agreemen t of t h e
ithuanian verbs with thos e o f Thracia n e.g . b y comparing ,
from t h e f i r s t conjugatio n as t as t a o r a a
as t s as t ti wit h g sto g sta i g stat g stare sed i
s d s s d a 2 sed ti wit h sedeo sedere li l s
with , etc., sa a s a y s ) sa s sa ia sa ti
with Germ. ic h sage Icel . eg segi a d segia and fro m t h e
second conjugation la la s la ia la ti wit h
from ) ut. , e e ia es ti wit h
e o e i e t e ere Icel . ega g The same division
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 2 1

which i s foun d in Icelandi c an d wa s describe d on p . 59 a l s o


a g r e e s completel y wit h t h a t o f Moesogothi c in a n in h i s
edition of lfilas , an d t h a t o f nglo- Saxon*), whic h i s eve n
nearer inasmuc h a s t h e t h i r d c l a s s h a s a vowe l change
almost correspondin g t o t h e one o f Icelandic but i t goes
without saying t h a t a word i s ofte n foun d t o hav e been
assigned t o anothe r c l a s s i n another language , nay ,
sometimes t o anothe r conjugation e.g . Swed . t er tarnde
tama an tmmer tmmede tmmet, an tvinger tvang
tvungen e tvingar tvingade tvingat. ne s eas l
persuaded t h a t t h i s classification i s in complet e agreemen t
with t h a t o f etti c an d Thracia n an d t h a t t h e f i r s t
conjugation con tains t h e pur e verbs, t h e second t h e impure
v e r b s , b y looking a t t h e f i r s t person, t h e p a s t tense, an d
t h e indefinit e mood, a s wel l a s t h e passiv e participl e - in
s p i t e o f t h e fact t h a t the y hav e often been rendered t o t a l l y
unrecognizable by virtue of contractions an d vowel s havin g
been dropped. The mai n indication , however , i s t h e p a s t
tense, which in a l l impur e v e r b s end s in t h e mer e consonant
without any ending , t h u s a l s o i n t h e f i r s t person e.g .
fora-re el g bora bora-di ad bora, feri-re el g ber
bardi ad beri-a; ers s al-re el el l ad a l - a ,
trahere el g dreg drg ad draga. T e r e er s
invariably hav e t h e endin g di o r ti i n t h e p a s t tense, before
which t h e vowe l i s foun d i n cas e i t was a, but h a s been lef t
out i n a l l o t h e r cases sometimes i t i s a l s o found in t h e
f i r s t person but t h e impur e v e r b s never have an y such
ending i n t h e p a s t tense, nor d o the y eve r hav e an y vowe l i n
t h e f i r s t person, except t h e inheren t vowe l o f t h e wor d i n
t h e f i r s t s y l l a b l e , which i s not t h e on e mentione d here . I n
t h e f i r s t conjugation t h e b a s i s o f subclassification i s t h e

*) This language has as yet bee n studie d so little and so inadequately tha t I cannot refer t o
any a t al l serviceabl e grammar for that whic h i s foun d i n i es an d e doe s not deserve thi s
name.
2 2 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

specific vowe l precedin g t h e ending - granted t h a t t h e n a t u r e


of t h a t vowe l ma y b e e s t a b l i s h e d - or els e t h e e n t i r e
analogy of inf lection in t h i s , then , t h e classification shows
perfect agreement wit h t h a t o f Gree k an d atin . I n th e
second conjugation, on t h e o t h e r hand , subclassification in
t h e Gothic languages i s j u s t l y decide d b y th e vowe l change
which t h e w o r d s underg o i n t h e p a s t tense but in Gree k i t
i s almos t j u s t t h a t changes , an d in ati n even fewe r v e r b s
t h a t change t h e i r vowel s a r e even fewer , whereas t h e
influence of t h e consonant s on t h e endin g i s s o considerable
t h a t her e t h i s c l a s s o r conjugatio n th e impur e verbs), too,
i s mos t c o r r e c t l y classifie d b y t h e distinguishin g l e t t e r i n
o t h e r w o r d s , subclassification i s differentl y based an d
accordingly canno t sho w such close agreement wit h t h a t o f
t h e Gothic verbs a s wa s t h e cas e i n t h e f i r s t conjugation .
owever, t h e r e a r e t r a c e s a l s o in Gree k o f severa l kinds o f
vowel change, such a s ,
, , , ,
, ello e li ango e igi bu t the y a r e fe w
and i r r e g u l a r . S t i l l , t h e ver y fact t h a t the y a r e s o many
and s o mutuall y correspondin g i n t h e Gothic languages
appears t o m e t o b e an i n t e r e s t i n g indication o f how ol d
these languages a r e for such peculiarities a r e in variably
worn of f 2 9 in t h e younge r languages , an d t h e mor e s o
t h e f a r t h e r the y get fro m t h e source. The y a r e fewe r i n
Swedish an d Danis h tha n in Icelandic , an d fewe r i n Englis h
than i n Danish. Thus t h e main classificatio n of v e r b s i s
seen t o b e exactl y t h e same in t h e Thracia n and Gothic l a n -
guages, but t h e subclassification shows close agreement onl y
in t h e f i r s t conjugation . S t i l i , t h e r e i s a wor d i n Icelandi c
which i s ver y s i m i l a r t o t h e . c l a s s o f t h e second conjuga-
tion i n atin , viz. ita to know ) p a s t issi for v i t s i ) ,
j u s t a s edo essi i n atin .
ctual inflection i s almos t identica l i n bot h conjuga -
tions, bot h i n Icelandi c an d i n Gree k an d atin compariso n
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 2

i s t h e r e f o r e mos t convenientl y mad e fo r bot h jointly . Th e


f i r s t person i n Gree k end s i n or ith. i o r at.
in s in a o r o Moesog. in am) or to
t h i s correspond s in ngloSaxo n and Germa n in eo Engl.
a and in Germa n in an d e. Icelandic h a s t h e ol d in
t h e wor d e I am, but a p a r t fro m t h a t i t h a s invariably
discarded t h e ending, in agreemen t wit h wha t w e sa w i n t h e
case o f t h e inflection o f nouns . I t i s a l s o i n t e r e s t i n g t h a t
t h e very sam e thin g occur s i n these languages a s f a r a s t h e
f i r s t person pronomi i s concerned ego Icel. eg fro m
which t h i s endin g appear s t o have bee n taken . The second
person h a s the endin g in t h e undoubtedl y ver y ol d w o r d s
in used i n eoli c instea d o f t h e pur e verbs in ),
but Dor. in t h e usual verbs in ) in atin ,
s i m i l a r l y , i t h a s j u s t s in t h e f i r s t conjugatio n o f t h e pur e
verbs, but is in t h e second. Moesogothic likewise h a s or
, but Icelandi c - a s usual - changes t h i s int o r in t h e
f i r s t , and int o r wit h a n a u x i l i a r y vowel , i.e. r in t h e
280 second, somethin g whic h howeve r i s a l s o foun d in t h e
f i r s t when t h e proper vowel o f t h e wor d had bee n l o s t . In
old Greek , especiall y i n eoli c an d sometime s i n ttic , th e
second person ha d a f u r t h e r suffix , which whe n adde d t o
t h e simple endin g gav e from t h i s h a s come t h e
form i n st whic h i s found i n nglo-Saxon an d German, but
not i n t h e ordic languages. The t h i r d person h a s t h e
ending or Dor. in t h e w o r d s i n , and in t h e
o t h e r s , t h i s bein g undoubtedl y instea d o f or , which
t h e Greeks coul d no t pronounce in perfect agreement wit h
t h i s t h e endin g i n ati n is t fo r Dor. ) in t h e f i r s t con -
jugation, it fo r or ) in t h e second. rom t h i s t the
Moesog. ngloS. Engl. t o r s and Germa n t fro m the
o t h e r for m , in whic h t h e j u s t appear s t o b e appende d i n
o r d e r t o s e p a r a t e i t fro m t h e second person, h a s come t h e
ordic endin g r , whic h had t o be t h e same her e a s in t h e
second person, since a s h o r t vowe l a t t h e en d o f t h e wor d
2 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

i s invariabl y discarded , especiall y whe n i t j u s t belonge d t o


t h e ending. I n the ending s o f t h e s e two person s w e t h u s
see additiona l proof o f t h e tenet t h a t t h e ordi c languages
have no t sprun g fro m t h e Germanic , nor vice versa t h e l a t t e r
from t h e former fo r on e c l a s s lacks t h e forms foun d i n
t h e other, bot h havin g draw n - however eac h i n i t s ow n wa y
- from t h e same common source, t h e Greek, j u s t a s we hav e
seen befor e in t h e cas e of t h e ad jectives. a t e r Icelandic,
incidentally, h a s adopted t h e German 2 . perso n ending i n st
but t h a t i s so recen t t h a t i t scarcely occur s i n an y o f t h e
s a g a s an d t h u s shoul d no t b e considered here . Th e firs t
person o f t h e plural ends in or in Greek , but t h e
Doric endin g i n or i s t h e original one , t h e former
having i n a l l p r o b a b i l i t y been intended onl y fo r 281 the
dual which r e g u l a r l y ends in v, something whic h find s
corroboration a l s o i n ithuanian . T h i s shows ho w wrong
some a u t h o r s of Greek g r a m m a r s a r e in making
forms o f t h e p l u r a l exclusively and claimin g t h a t t h e dual
lacks t h e f i r s t person, an d ho w much more justified t h a t
excellent scholar, Dr . an d eadmaste r lo i s in assumin g
t o b e t h e ending o f t h e dual from whic h i t was
eventually extended a l s o t o t h e p l u r a l - a s he did both i n
h i s l a r g e r , reasone d Gree k grammar , an d i n h i s l a t e r ,
s m a l l e r an d more practica l grammar o f t h a t language. ro m
t h e ending or , which i s t h e t r u e ending in t h e
p l u r a l , comes atin s o r i s an d a s t h e Gothic l a n -
guages d o no t r e a d i l y admit of long polysyllabi c endings, i t
h a s become or in Moesogothic , i n Icelandi c through -
out, whic h r e l a t e s t o i s an d about a s t h e dativ e
ending previously r e f e r r e d t o r e l a t e s t o at . i s o r
o s s befor e whic h t h e original vowe l o f t h e w o r d s
i s a l s o r e g u l a r l y dropped. Th e second person o f t h e p l u r a l
ends in or in Gree k at. tis or itis Moesog. or
Icel. it o r id, befor e whic h t h e vowel of t h e wor d i s a l s o
r e g u l a r l y dropped. The t h i r d person ends in Gree k i n fo r
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 2 5

Dor. , from whic h wit h i discarde d ati n n t or nt


M sog. or . T h i s roug h clas h o f consonant s or
, which woul d make t h e s y l l a b l e long and weighty ,
disappears completel y i n Icelandic , j u s t a s w e sa w in t h e
case o f in t h e accusativ e p l u r a l of noun s an d adjective s
where Icelandi c ha d a fo r , for , etc. but , a s
in th e accusative , th e preceding vowe l i s kept , an d fro m t h a t
h a s come t h e a o r i n whic h t h e t h i r d person o f t h e plural
invariably ends in Icelandic t h e fact t h a t t h i s endin g i s
mostly identica l wit h t h a t o f t h e impersona l 28 mood i s
t h e r e f o r e accidental. The same identity in German i s a l s o
purely accidental one en e.g. sie gra en i s instea d of
Moesog. ) , the other gra en corresponds t o
Moesog. Gr. or ) . I n t e r e s t i n g l y , non e o f
t h e o t h e r persona l ending s have undergon e so many changes
a s t h i s on e i n t h e variou s r e l a t e d language s in ithuania n
i t does not differ a t all fro m t h e t h i r d perso n singular or
dual. To t h i s corresponds t h e usage in Greek t h a t neute r
words i n th e p l u r a l a r e joine d wit h t h e t h i r d person
singular, something whic h i n t h e Dori c dialect i s often foun d
t o have bee n extended a l s o t o masculines an d feminines in
the plural. In Russia n i s droppe d before the t but in
olish t h i s t i s droppe d also, without leaving anythin g else
behind tha n a nasa l sound i n t h e l a s t vowel , whic h i s
mostly a, j u s t a s in Icelandi c - except t h a t t h e nasal sound
i s missin g her e sinc e i t i s not found a t a l l i n Icelandic . I n
Greek i t s e l f was added , whereb y t h e original was
dropped a l s o and t h e preceding vowe l lengthened i n o t h e r
languages s t i l l o t h e r changes occur .
or a b e t t e r overvie w o f these endings I be g t o s e t u p
a fe w examples by wa y o f comparison . See p . 2 6.)

lthough t h e change of vowel s gives Icelandic a


different appearance, t h e s i m i l a r i t y i s a l w a y s recognizabl e
- ia rea d st ch n ) ad stiga
Sing. 1 . - o r - i o r i s - stig
- - - ir - st g r
. - - - - ir - stig r
lur. 1 . - i o r io - st g o
2. - i it - st g it
. - ia - stig a
at. a ere Moesog .h v Icel. aa
Sing. 1 . a e o h h v ei
a es h x eir
. a et h a eir ngloS . e
lur. 1 . a e s h
a e tis ha ax h a id
. a e nt h a a
2 6
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 2

after wha t has been stated abov e abou t thei r origi n an d


shifts.

The present of the eonditional mood

in Icelandi c i s ver y simila r to that of the indicative , excep t


that i t alway s has the same vowel as the impersona l mood ,
whereas th e indicativ e ofte n changes it, as w e hav e see n i n
a a eg 28 ei In th e ancient s it has i in th e ending s
throughout, t o whic h i n M sogothic correspond s c ) ,
as in

Sing. lur . Sing . lur.


Icel. i i Moesog . - -
- i r it - -
-i i - ,

of w h i c h , h o w e v e r , c ) i s eithe r contracted with , o r


dropped a f t e r , t h e main vowel o f t h e c l a ss i n o which s e e m s
t o c o r r e s p o n d t o t h e I c e l a n d i c, G r e e k a n d a t in i n a I n th e
ettic a n d Slavic languages thi s tense form i s lacking. It
corresponds ver y precisely t o t h e atin p r s . conj . o r f u t .
i n d . of t h e s e c o n d c o n j u g a t i o n , w i t h w h i c h i t m a y be a l l t h e
more safel y compared a s t h e future i s o t h e r w i s e lackin g i n
all Gothi c languages an d in ati n i t s e l f i s c l e a r l y see n t o
be a mer e v a r i a n t o f t h e p r e s e n t tense, either - this g s
for t h e second conjugation - o f t h e present o f the
c o n d i t i o n a l mood , o r - a s f a r a s t h e f i r s t i s concerned - o f
the present o f t h e indicative . I n Gree k i t i s obviou s t h a t
t h e p r e s e n t t e n s e of t h e c o n d i t i o n a l moo d h a s d e v e l o p ed from
the indicative , having almos t a l w a y s t h e same ending , onl y
w i t h a lengthene d a u x i l i a r y vowe l preceding b u t as I c e l a n -
dic never h a s long vowel s i n t h e endings, t h e similarit y is
2 8 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

l e s s s t r i k i n g here I j u s t wan t t o displa y a coupl e o f


examples o f th e s i m i l a r i t y wit h ati n
i r s t bot h th e indicativ e an d conditiona l presen t tens e
of orare ad ora

indicative conditiona l
at. Icel . at . Icel .
Sing. 1 . ora o o ora ore ori
2 . ora s ora r ores ori r
. ora t ora r ore t ori 285
lur. 1 . ora s or ore s ori
2. ora tis or it ore tis ori t
. ora n t ora ore t ori

next, th e conditiona l o f er o eg er an d alo eg el bu t


in t h e wa y t h a t t h e futur e i s use d her e b y wa y o f
comparison wit h t h e ati n w o r d s , bein g o f t h e secon d conju -
gation

indicative conditiona l
at. Icel . at . Icel .
Sing. 1 . era eri ala ali
2. ere s eri r ales alir
. ere t eri alet ali
lur. 1 . ere s eri ale s ali
2. ere tis erit aletis alit
. ere n t eri aient ali

owever, recen t Icelandi c h a s adopte d t h e endin g rn i n


t h e f i r s t perso n p l u r a l o f t h e conditiona l moo d a s well , s o
t h a t e.g . er rn nowaday s i s bot h an d , jus t
a s erid i s bot h an d .
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 2 9

The imperative mood

in Icelandi c actuall y h a s onl y one person, viz. t h e second


singular, which h a s no endin g and t h u s d i s p l a y s t h e nake d
r o o t form o f t h e verb, excep t t h a t e and i o f t h e pur e verbs
mostly a r e dropped here a s in t h e imperf . T h i s
corresponds 286 completely t o t h e ati n an d Gree k
imperatives of t h e second person, only t h a t t h e s e language s
often, t h e o t h e r way around , appen d an e i n th e impur e
v e r b s , wherea s in Icelandi c i t i s droppe d eve n in t h e pur e
verbs, e . g .
ora ora
ta e egi
er er

The r e s t i s borrowe d fro m t h e conditiona l present


which j u s t described . Th e Icelandi c imperative h a s n o
f u r t h e r tense forms in r e t u r n , i t h a s anothe r much more
frequent form, viz. with a n appende d which i s mostl y
contracted wit h t h e wor d itself, becomin g t d or to do
according t o t h e n a t u r e of t h e precedin g consonant . T h i s
seems t o correspon d exactly t o wha t i n ati n i s calle d
futurum, an d i n t e r e s t i n g l y bot h i n Icelandi c an d i n ati n t h i s
appendix h a s a different, s h o r t e r vowe l tha n t h e pronou n
itself t being t h u s close r t o Gree k e.g.

ora to orad or do
ta e to egid
er to erd
teg to e t for teg e

The t h i r d person in to i n t h i s socalle d futur., o n t h e


o t h e r hand, i s t h e t h i r d i n of t h e Gree k present, so t h a t
t h i s e n t i r e tense form futur.imperat.) i s an e r r o r i n ati n
g r a m m a r s an d doe s not e x i s t i n t h e language itself. o r
250 RIGI T E D RSE G GE

does i t contain an y mar k o f t h e future , correspondin g


obviously t o th e Gree k an d Icelandi c present e.g .

Sing. 2. lege o r legito Icel . les o r lest


. legito 28
lur. 2. legite o r legitote perhaps originall y
a dual)
. leg nto
or

ell, i t i s obviou s t h a t i t i s forme d fro m t h e present


legit legitis leg nt no t fro m t h e futur e leget legetis legent
i t would a l s o be s t r a n g e if t h e imperativ had a futur e of
i t s own , inasmuc h a s t h e conditiona l does not , although t h e r e
was a much higher need for i t there nor i s t h e r e an y
t r a c e of such a futur e i n t h e et tic languages , although the y
do have t h e Greek future i n s ) in t h e indicative . Thu s
we ma y safel y banis h i t fro m atin, whereby t h i s languag e
becomes mor e r e g u l a r i n t e r n a l l y an d comes t o agree with t h e
Gothic languages.

The impersonal mood

ends i n s t a n d a r d Gree k i n Dor. or , which i s


Moesog. German en , a s well a s Icel . an d S wed. a, b y t h e
frequent s h i f t s of a in to en in o r e i e.g . -
Germ. el en Icel. i l a or Germ. steigen wit h
expanded vowel ei for i ) Icel. stiga v Dor . Icel.
era rom t h i s a h a s come t h e Danish e, a s in al e
stige re
ON THE SOURCE OF THE GOTHIC LANGUAGES 251

The adjectival forms

o r participle s a r e i n atin , a s in the Gothi c languages,


a c t u a l l y neithe r activ e nor passive, bu t mer e adjective s
derived fro m t h e verbs , although the y a r e mostl y activ e i n
the present tense an d mostl y passiv e i n t h e past
accordingly, the y ma y bot h be t r e a t e d unde r t h e active form.
The present, then, i n ati n end s i n ns 2 8 8 for n t s , whic h
corresponds t o t h e Gree k participl e o f w o r d s i n an d o f
t h e indefinite tense i n v fo r v V v ) wit h a
preceding lon g vowe l o r diphthong. ro m t h i s participial
form, when inflecte d accordin g t o t h e f i r s t declensiona l
system, cornes anothe r i n nd nd s nda whic h b y t h e
g r a m m a r s i s no w mad e int o a socalle d gerundium of t h e
active, no w int o a futur e of t h e passive , but r e a l l y i s
neither, bein g simply , lik e t h e o t h e r s , a derive d adjectiv e
which ma y b e use d bot h ways . ro m t h e s e t w o v a r i a n t s o f
one an d t h e sam e for m derive t h e Gothic participial forms i n
t h e presen t tense . Th e Icelandi c for m i n andi whic h i n t h e
old languag e i s inflecte d i n t h e masculine an d neute r a s t h e
definite adjectives, i n t h e feminin e an d p l u r a l a s com-
p a r a t i v u s , a s well a s a l s o t h e Swedis h i n ande ende an d t h e
Danish in ende actually correspon d most closely t o t h e l a s t
mentioned futur e form or, a s i t shoul d perhap s b e calle d
more c o r r e c t l y , t h e o b l i g a t o r y form), which belong s t o t h e
same system . The Moesogothi c i n v an d t h e Germa n i n nd
a r e decline d bot h accordin g t o t h e f i r s t an d t o t h e secon d
system, t h a t i s bot h indefinite an d definite, an d t h u s
corresponds t o bot h form s o f atin. I n t h i s wa y on e ma y
understand how i t corne s t h a t t h e s e participial forms s o
frequently hav e passiv e meaning s and , i n p a r t i c u l a r , passiv e
t re ean n s s as mit iboende Hus, den holdende or
a oldende sion e t c . se e Rask p. 2 0 , t o w a r d s t h e end)
i t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t h a t i t i s p r i m a r i l y t h e definit e for m whic h
h a s t h i s meaning i n German an d a t t h e sam e tim e i s t h e on e
252 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

t r u l y correspondin g t o t h e o b l i g a t o r y form o f atin. y


way o f exampl e

a ens Moesog. h v
a end s h v Ice . a andi an d s a andi

289 The past adjectival form.

In discussing t h e p a s t tens e I tak E th e l i b e r t y o f


beginning wit h t h e adjectiva l form, because in t h i s wa y it
will be easie r t o explain thos e o f t h e o t h e r moods . Th e
Icelandic p a s t corresponds here t o th e ati n p r e t e r i t e o r
perf. p a r t i c . ) , an d t h a t ver y precisely, suc h a s

In t h e f i r s t conjugatio n
at. Icel .
1.cl. at s ad r e.g . orat s orad r
cl et s t s d r t r a it s a d r read
a d r
do it s ta id r ta inn
.cl. it s id r d r inn
etit s edid r edinn

In t h e secon d conjugation
l.cl.-t s t r o r d r inn strat s str d r
2.cl. t s t r o r d r inn te t s a t r a inn

Exchanging d fo r nn i s a common dialect pronunciatio n


in old Icelandic , but a f t e r nn t h e r i s mostl y dropped, in
disyllabic w o r d s i n p a r t i c u l a r t h u s w e fin d sad r and
sann r d r and nnr an d t h e like , so t h a t t h e for m i n
inn i s t h e ver y same a s t h e on e in idr which i s foun d onl y
in t h e e a r l i e s t poets an d s a g a w r i t e r s . t becomin g d i s on e
of t h e most frequent s h i f t s o f a l l i n these language s see p .
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 25

162, 1 . 12) nay, on e even finds d i n many atin w o r d s


which, althoug h claime d t o lac k t h e adjectival form,
nevertheless d o hav e derive d adjective s i n id s whic h hav e
a s much r i g h t t o b e calle d participi a a s many o t h e r s , such
as al eo al i 290 al id s areo ar i arid s alleo
all i allid s an d many more. n th e o t h e r hand, on e
might find i t peculiar t h a t t h e s e adjectival forms a r e s o
different from those o f Greek bu t i t h a s been observe d b y
o t h e r s lon g ago t h a t the y correspon d t o t h e Gree k adjective s
in o , o f whic h t h e r e a r e a g r e a t number , derive d from
verbs.

The past of the indicative mood

or imperfectu m indicativi ) d i f f e r s i n t h e tw o conjugations


in t h e f i r s t t h i s tens e for m almos t invariabl y h a s t h e
distinguishing l e t t e r d or t befor e t h e t r u e endings . I t i s
not easy t o sa y from where t h i s d or t h a s corne, a s i t i s
lacking i n ati n an d Greek bu t sinc e i t i s obviou s fro m t h e
grammar of Icelandi c t h a t i t i s very closel y r e l a t e d t o t h e
adjectival form o f t h e p a s t , and sinc e i t i s a l s o foun d in
t h e t h e p a s t of th e conditiona l moo d - , i t seem s clearl y t o
have bee n a ver y ol d distinguishin g l e t t e r for t h e p a s t in
a l l moods , whic h howeve r h a s bee n dropped i n Greek whe n
t h e adjective s i n o r e f e r r e d t o disappeare d fro m t h e verb s
and a differen t distinguishin g l e t t e r was acquired I shall
not ventur e t o sa y fo r certain whethe r t h i s ne w
distinguishing l e t t e r x perhap s i s j u s t a varian t o f t h e ol d
T, o r whethe r i t i s fundamentall y different bu t i t seem s
m o s t reasonable t h a t a t o f t h i s kin d h a s bee n dropped i n
t h e ati n perfect s o f th e f i r s t conjugatio n an d i n t h e ol d
Ionic perfects , a s i n o , fro m o o fo r o o , and
many o t h e r s , an d t h a t t h e whic h i s foun d now wa s simply
inserted l a t e r i n o r d e r t o fil l t h e ga p betwee n t h e vowels .
25 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

This i s corroborate d considerabl y b y a compariso n wit h


aroese in which th e Icelandi c d ha s similarly bee n dropped ,
and wher e th e resultin g gap was filled in th e same fashion ,
such as Icel. els adi amavit ) plural els d amaverunt )
ar. els ai els a 291 I t has already bee n mentione d
above on p . 1 1 that thi s d or t appear s t o b e related t o
the Slavic The ending s themselve s correspond ver y well
to thos e o f Greek , viz .

Sing, da Gr . -x
dir -x
-di -xe
Plur. -dum
-dut
d -x - fo r x v .

In th e second conjugation, wher e Icelandi c has n o such


distinguishing letter, the similarit y wit h th e ol d Ioni c past
forms o r perfecta secunda) an d wit h th e ati n past is more
apparent the vowe l has simpl y been droppe d i n th e ending s
of th e firs t an d thir d persons , makin g the m identica l i n th e
singular, and i n th e second person eithe r s was changed int o
t becaus e i t was contracted s o tha t th e vowe l i n fron t
disappeared, o r perhap s i t was rather tha t th e 8 o f th e ol d
was kept becaus e i t was preceded b y a consonant , a s i n
Greek v fo r v , an d thi s 8 a t th e en d change d
into t I must , however , stat e furthe r tha t th e Icelandi c
verbs o f thi s conjugatio n ver y ofte n have a differen t vowel
in th e plura l o f th e past than the y hav e i n th e singular,
viz. a shor t o r simpl e vowe l i n th e plural , i n th e singular
mostly a lon g o r diphthonga l one e.g. , whe n th e vowe l o f
the verb i s Gr. ex), th e past ha s mostly ei i n th e
singular, and i Gr . x ) i n th e plural on th e othe r hand, i f
it i s i th e pas t ha s a u in th e singular, and Gr . v) i n
the plural which clearl y shows tha t the wor d has ha d
T ES R E T E G T I G GES 255

several forms and c o r r e s p o n d s quit e closel y t o t h e irregular


Greek 292 v e r b s so that th e plura l almost invariabl y i s
taken fro m the ol d past aorist. secundus ) i n Greek , t h e
singular o n th e othe r hand r a t h e r fro m an ol d p r e t e r i t e
perfectum medium) i n whic h quit e simila r vowe l changes
occur, e.g . o ov v v ov, a n d severa l
others. y wa y o f a n exampl e I woul d lik e t o quote th e
a t i n i m p e r f e c t no i o r gno i an d th e n g l o - S a x o n neo
Engl, ne a s well a s t h e Gree k o whic h has present
m e a n i n g e x a c t l y a s t h e I c e l a n d i c eit whic h h a s th e form o f
t h e p a s t b u t w h o s e meanin g i s p r e s e n t
Singular
ngloS. Icel.
1. gno i neo o eit
2. gno isti neo est o ei t
. gno i t neo o eit
lural
1. gno i s o it o
2. gno istis cneovon o it t
. gno er nt o it o

Thus, fro m g st g r e f e r r e d t o abov e w e ma y -


at leas t on a c c o u n t o f o o - presuppose a n ol d preterite
, from whic h Icelandi c has th e singula r of t h e past
steig just a s th e plura l o f th e past in I c e l a n d i c c o m e s
r a t h e r fro m th e ol d past ov, - o v stigo
stig t ov stig o r stigo fe w t r a c e s of a d i n th e
p a s t a r e , i n fact , foun d i n t h i s secon d conjugation , such a s
de di f o r do n di fo r na r di fo r r d - something whic h
is also apparently presuppose di n th e formatio no f th e
adjectival forms, 29 as these p r a c t i c a l l y a l l e n d i n inn
w h i c h a c c o r d i n g t o t h e p r e c e d i n g i s f o r idr som e also i n dr
like t h o s e o f ati n t s So perhaps t h i s d o rt whic h i s
the distinguishin g letter o f the f i r s t conjugation , originall y
occurred i n all verbs , but was kept onl y i n th e pur e verbs
256 RIGI T E D RS E G G E

in Icelandic wher e i t serve d t o fill th e gap betwee n the


vowel o f t h e endin g an d o f t h e word , but was dropped
completely in atin, excep t fo r t h e adjectival forms o f bot h
conjugations, an d i n Greek , finally , foun d onl y i n t h e derive d
adjectives wherea s i t was replaced wit h x i n th e v e r b s .

The past of the conditional moo d

i s differentiate d fro m t h e indicative solel y by vowe l change


and b y havin g i a s t h e vowe l o f t h e endin g more frequently.
The ending s prope r a r e t h e sam e i n bot h conjugations , viz. in
t h e singular a o r i ir i i n t h e p l u r a l i or it i o r
ere t h e r originate d fro m s i s kep t i n t h e second person,
since n o contraction take s plac e i n t h i s instance .

The passive.

The Icelandi c v e r b s hav e n o f u r t h e r form s tha n these


in t h e active form a l l t h a t i s left , then , i s t h e accoun t o f
t h e passive , whic h ma y b e viewe d i n on e scope , a s i t
c o n s i s t s o f on e single device only , viz . st whic h i s appende d
t o t h e active form throughout , althoug h t h e precedin g
consonant i s sometime s droppe d o r changed . Thos e wh o wan t
t o derive Danish , o r t h e ordi c language s generally , fro m
German will get int o t r o u b l e her e too, sinc e non e o f t h e
Germanic languages hav e an y passiv e form . True, on e might
immediately thin k o f derivin g t h e Icelandi c endin g fro m t h a t
of Gree k i n but a s t h i s j u s t explain s t h e impersonal
29 mood , i t canno t b e assume d t o b e t h e c o r r e c t origin .
ut i f we conside r t h e Icelandi c endin g somewha t more
d o s e l y , we find t h a t i n old orwegia n se e t h e refac e t o
t h e Royal Mirror , p. ) , a s a l s o frequently i n t h e ol d poet s
i t end s i n as o r rathe r i n s fo r a i s j u s t t h e endin g o f
T ES R E T E G T I G GE S 25

t h e activ e form i n t h e impersona l mood . T h i ss whic h


accordingly i s th e o l d e s t an d most original form , i s clearl y
a contractio n of si Dan . sig t h e accusativ e o f s s o r
if yo u prefe r i n t h e genitive , o f sin at . s i j u s t a s on e
occasionally find s fo r i me ) appende d t o t h e verbs , a s
in gda gda ig I thought , i t seeme d t o me .
ut when t h e vowe l i disappeare d an d t h e wor d becam e
unrecognizable, t h e origi n wa s forgotten an d i t was extende d
t o a l l person s - precisel y a s t h e Greek s eventuall y extende d
their ov t o a l l person s instea d o f ov an d ov.
ut by shiftin g int o t h i s meanin g o f an o r d i n a r y r e l a t i v e
word, o r r a t h e r ending , i t eventuall y change d i t s for m whe n
pronounced r a p i d l y fro m s t o st j u s t a s e.g . Germa n
a ast h a s corne from a as s an d t h e like i n t h e end ,
even t w a s l o s t and j u s t s remained, eventuall y passin g fro m
t h e r e l a t i v e or, a s i t i s calle d i n t h e v e r b s reflexive,
meaning int o t h a t o f t h e passive . T h i s ma y explai n wh y t h e
Icelandic passiv e mostly h a s a reflexive sense e.g. re r
hafdi sezc i Hlidskilf : re a sat sel s e t t sig,
settsc) n s al Sigurdr settist nidr : r sa t
down, an d numerou s o t h e r s an d a l s o wh y t h e passiv e
meaning proper , on t h e o t h e r hand , i s mostl y expresse d b y
circumscription a s i n Germa n se e Ras k p . 20 an d 205) .
T h i s a l s o a g r e e s with t h e ithuania n an d Slavic reciprocum ,
which was discussed on pp . 1 2 an d 1 5 . or i s i t i n fac t
295 s o different from Germa n a s i t appear s a t f i r s t
glance, fo r i t i s a wellknow n fac t t h a t t h i s languag e ver y
often expresses t h e passiv e b y prefixin g si t o t h e active,
s o t h a t t h e e n t i r e difference c o n s i s t s in t h e German s placin g
i t i n fron t a s a n independent word , whereas t h e
Scandinavians place a f t e r w a r d s and c o n t r a c t i t wit h t h e wor d
proper, j u s t a s i n cas e of t h e definite a r t i c l e , s o t h a t i t
ended u p b y becomin g a mer e ending , j u s t a s t h e l a t t e r did .
The renc h frequentl y e x p r e s s themselve s i n t h e sam e way ,
e Le mot dont vient un autre mot s'appelle primitif
258 RIGI T E D RS E G GE

i s calle d a ste m word , Dan . ' k a l d e - s Stammeord') . Th e s


which the y pu t in fron t h a s t h e same origi n a s t h e on e w e
append a t t h e end , excep t t h a t i t i s l e s s extensive, bein g
used onl y abou t t h e t h i r d person. ccordingly, t h i s endin g
did no t hav e i t s origin fro m Greek, but had bee n develope d
by t h e languag e itsel f in agreemen t with t h e etti c an d
Slavic languages i n fact, not s o differently from Greek
either, fo r t h e socalle d passivu m o f t h a t languag e i s
a c t u a l l y derive d from postfixin g t h e persona l pronouns , in
about t h e same manner a s gda gdi s etc., being
t h e r e f o r e by i t s origin , a s well a s t h e wa y i n whic h i t i s
very frequentl y used , r e a l l y reflexiv e se e abov e p . 1 1).

The wa y t h e Icelandi c languag e i s a r r a n g e d i n t h i s


respect i s t h u s f a r simpler tha n t h e s t r u c t u r e of t h e Greek
and t h e ati n languag e from which i t i s t o t a l l y derived
t h e r e bein g h a r d l y on e single form o r endin g whic h i s no t
found t o recu r here , excep t for t h o s e whic h hav e com e abou t
by puttin g t o g e t h e r element s which nevertheles s wil l b e
found t o recu r singly in t h e Thracia n languages . ollowin g
t h i s , then , on e i s t o expect a considerabl e s i m i l a r i t y a l s o a s
f a r a s vocabulary i s concerned but a s I cannot provid e a n
e n t i r e dictionar y here , I s h a l l confin e mysel f t o l i s t i n g a
number o f individua l w o r d s b y wa y o f sample s

296 1 . ames of inanimate natural objects.

The Thracia n language s Th e Gothic languages

1. Gr. at . sol ith . Icel . s l ands lis agains t


sa le t h e sun , t h e wron g wa y
round)
T ES R E T EG T I G GE S 25 9

2. - Dor. ith. - poet , ni Dan. aane


en er on d
.- - - - - stiarna Swed . st rna
at. stella for ster la ) Dutc h sterre ngloS .
steorra Engl , star Germ .
der tern
.- shadow) - s Dan. e n ts ggi
Dan. gge
5. - - ni l ei r Dutc h ne el
at. ne la Germ . e el
6. - ent s ind r
. at. - sni r a d sni a t o snow )
ni ni is Dutch snee ngloS.
sna
8. steam), a wor d Germ. t e de
found neithe r i n ati n
nor i n ors e
9. sea an d s a l t ) at. - salt s a l t an d sea ) Germ .
sal al
10. at. are i th. res ar Dutch an d Germ . eer
11. at. la s a lake , poet . - l gr gen. lagar water,