Thank you for your explanations!
Gerry T. wrote:
>In his letter with the same title as appears above, Mr. Keth discusses the
>possible relation between the Gothic word giutan, to pour, and the name the
>Goths called themselves by.
>He gives the ablaut forms of giutan as follows: present giuta, past singular
>gaut, past plural gutum, present participle gutans.
>(The last of these is actually the past participle, with passive sense:
>(that has been) poured. The present participle is giutands.)
I looked in Braune's and Ebbinghaus' grammar, and was a bit surprised
that only one participle was listed.
"Those who have been poured" makes sense as the name of a tribe.
(maybe "those who have been cast", as in the case of bronze?)
(wasn't bronze a metal that was cast, in contrast to iron age
iron and steel that was merely hammered)
Thus the "gutans" form is reasonable.
>I think Mr. Keth is right to say we should be careful in making assumptions
>about how the name of the Goths would have been derived from these forms.
>Suppose, for example, that they had called themselves the Outpouring (in a
>sense like exodus). Verbs of the same class as giutan seem to have formed
>their derived nouns in at least two ways, as the following examples show:
I miss the ablaut in your examples.
Or at least the second series.
But you are right that we should also have to look at how the associated nouns
relate to an ablaut series of verbs.
>driusan (to fall) has relations driuso (a cliff) and drus (a fall).
>kiusan (to test) has kustus (a test).
>fraliusan (to lose) has fralusts (a loss).
>siukan (to be sick) has siukei (sickness).
>kriusan (to gnash) has krusts (gnashing).
>liugan (to tell lies) has liugn (a lie), liugnja (a liar).
>driugan (to wage, carry on) has drauhtinassus (a campaign).
>usþriutan (to harass) might well have had *þraut, to judge from OE þreat, and
Yes, þraut is a good example!
The ON verb "þrióta" seems to belong to the same ablaut series as "gióta".
(gothic usþriutan & giutan resp.)
þrióta, þraut, þrutom, þrotenn. (2nd ablaut series)
the ON verb means "to stop". (English "throttle"? "throat"?)
The ON noun "þraut" f. (difficulty) seems to be related to þrióta.
From "þraut" f. another verb "þreyta" (to get tired) also seems to have formed.
Exactly how these mechanisms work, would be interesting to learn more about.
>Perhaps there is a tendency for nouns that indicate an action or process to
>have "u" for their stem vowel. In that case the most likely form of the words
>for "Goth", "Gothic", on the assumption stated earlier, would be "gut-"; but
>"giut-" and "gaut-" would also seem possible.
"gaut" as causative for "giutan"?
>If the Goths' name for themselves meant the Poured-out People then we should
>presumably expect a form like "gutan".
>I myself hold no opinion about whether the Germanic Goth-words are related to
>giutan. However, the assumption that they are does not seem to let us to make
>a definite prediction about what form the word for "Goth" should take.
>Therefore, unless we have other relevant evidence besides the purely
>linguistic, belief that Goth-words are related to giutan rests on what may be
>only a conjecture.
I agree. It is a mere observation of a similarity of sounds.
Unless an exposition of the mechanism at work in forming
the word is proposed, it will merely remain an observation of
resemblance. (that could be merely superficial)
>One last thing. This may seem stupid, and probably is, but I will ask it
>anyway. The Goths must surely have had a name for themselves before they
>embarked on their wanderings round Europe, for whatever reason. Would you not
>expect them to have taken their existing name with them?
To give a counter example, the "Franks" seems to be a name
that arose when several tribes formed a kind of union.
Maybe it does have old roots to "the people who used to cast in bronze"?
>P.S. About how you express the perfect in Gothic: "gaut", for example, does
>duty for both "he poured" and "he has poured".
Thank you! That is exactly the information I could not find at once.
It is of course possible that it is also in Braune, and that I just
couldn't find it, because I didn't read all the small print.
I also saw a note somewhere that the use of modal verbs for forming
the various tenses (tempi), is something that was adopted into the
Germanic languages from Latin. Does any one have some more information
on that? And how does Ulfilas Gothic relate to it?
By "tempi" I mean, (example from English)
we have gone, we had gone, we shall go, we should go, we shall have gone,
we should have gone. (just in case I was not using the right term for