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Re: TIROL's etymology

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  • dgkilday57
    ... I agree, and I d like to add to this etymological discussion an analysis which was first proposed by some Italian linguists (Carlo Battisti, etc.) about 50
    Message 1 of 12 , Jul 9, 2009
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      --- In cybalist@yahoogroups.com, "Francesco Brighenti" <frabrig@...> wrote:

      --- In cybalist@yahoogroups.com, "dgkilday57" <dgkilday57@...> wrote:

      > The name <Tirol> remains unexplained, in my opinion. Also, I am not
      > convinced that what Rix calls "Rhaetic" is not really "Rhaeto-
      > Etruscan", that is, a colonial variety of archaic Etruscan spoken
      > in Padania but not native there. The true "Rhaetic" was more
      > likely an IE language of the Illyrian type, I think.

      I agree, and I'd like to add to this etymological discussion an
      analysis which
      was first proposed by some Italian linguists (Carlo Battisti, etc.)
      about 50
      years ago, but which doesn't seem fashionable any longer today,
      barring a few
      relevant exceptions -- see, e.g. at

      http://tinyurl.com/mm62zo

      and at

      http://tinyurl.com/n6y9f8

      Thanks for this interesting material. This derivation is certainly more tightly reasoned, and involves fewer ad-hoc assumptions, than my attempt elsewhere to derive <Tiról> from a Gaulish *Duriálom 'Stream-Clearing'. My understanding of Gaulish accent was incorrect, and *Durí(j)alom or *Dúrialom is to be expected. According to Battisti (ZRPh 63:388 [1943]), High German shifting of pre-German /d/ to /t/ is not attested in the Inn basin south of <Wilten> from <Veldidena>, and I could find no other examples of *-urj- > *-ür(j)- > -ir- here, so my derivation should be dismissed. Nevertheless I still find trouble with the accent of <Tiról>, as I explain below.

      It is surmised that Tyrol (attested A.D. 1142) ~ Tiról (with
      accented /o/), the
      name of the castle near Meran from which the name of the region
      Tyrol derives,
      best compares to the toponym Zirl, name of a locality in the Inn
      valley in
      present North Tyrol. Zirl is identified with the castle of Teriólis
      mentioned
      (in the locative case) in the _Notitia dignitatum_ (4th century
      A.D.). In A.D.
      799 it is mentioned as Cyreola, in 1151 Cirle (later > Zirl).
      Battisti (et al.)
      derive both Tiról and Zirl from the Roman toponym Teriólis, with the
      difference
      that the name of the Teriólis castle in the Inn valley was
      Germanized soon after
      the fall of the Roman Empire (possibly due to Alamannic and, later
      on, Old
      Bavarian linguistic influences) through /t/>/z/ consonant shift and
      retraction
      of the accent onto the first syllable, while the name of the other
      *Teriólis
      castle, the one near Meran, would have preserved the old accent and
      the initial
      t- with being Germanized as Tiról (< *Teriólo?) at a much later date.

      <Teriolis> apparently is the locative case. Hazlitt [1851] cites the place as Terioli, "a town of the Vennonetes, in Rhaetia, near Athesis fl., [on the left, southwest] of Vipitenum; hence the name of the Tyrol." He assumes (wrongly) that <Tiról> comes directly from the name of this place (not the one near Meran) with its normal Latin accentuation <Terióli:>. From the locative in -i:s it is not possible to determine whether the Latinized nominative ended in -i:, -ae, or -a. Hazlitt assumes the most common ending for plural town-names, masculine referring to the inhabitants, but <Cyreola> suggests a neuter plural (though this evidence is weak, since different writers in different centuries need not agree on endings).

      The toponym *Teriólis itself is generally regarded, in this
      interpretation, as a
      pre-Roman one, although an older etymology would derive it from
      Latin terra
      'earth' -- see, for instance the website of the Schloss Tirol Museum
      itself (!):

      http://www.schlosstirol.it/content.php?id=3600&lang=2
      "The very name of the place, which later became the name for the
      whole land, is
      associated, according to some philologists, with the Latin word
      'terra', and
      denotes, in this case, a location which is clearly visible from a
      distance. The
      castle hill, surrounded by 'earth pyramids', [is ] itself a sort of
      large 'earth
      pyramid'..."

      To me that explanation seems forced and unconvincing.

      I have seen through a Google Books search that *Teriólis is, on the
      contrary,
      generally connected with an Illyrian or (IE) Rhaetic
      (Rhaeto-Illyrian?)
      substrate language of ancient Rhaetia.

      The problem I have with *Terióli: (-ae, -a?) is that Illyrian (including Japygian and Messapic) place-names generally have more recessive accentuation than classical Latin. In Illyria proper <Ísamnus>, <Drívastum>, and <Dýrrachium> are indicated by Albanian <Ishm>, <Drisht>, and <Dúrrës>, while Italian <Durázzo> and Serbian <Drac^> represent the normalized <Dyrráchium>. Friulian <Tárvis> preserves the Illyrian accent of <Tárvisium>, while <Trevíso> reflects the normalized <Tarvísium>. On the other hand <Bríndisi> retains the Messapic accent of <Brúndisium>. These last two names are formed by suffixation of the nouns for 'bull' and 'stag'. It appears however that Illyrian binary compounds with dissyllabic first elements (including prepositional ones) took the accent on the last syllable of the first element. Thus we have <Téramo> and <Térni> from <Intéramn(i)a>, Latinized from a probable Japygian *Antérabna: 'Place Between Rivers'. Illyrian accent agrees on these points with Gaulish (Dottin, LG p. 104). If, as seems likely, <Teriol-> is a Rhaeto-Illyrian name, I would expect either *Teríol- (if it was a compound *Teri-ol-) or *Tériol- (if it was a compound *Ter(i)-iol- or formed by suffixation instead). The accentuation *Tériol- is indeed borne out by <Cirle> and <Zirl> without any ad-hoc retraction of the accent, and if this thinking is correct, <Tiról> can only be derived from the same stem if it came, as Hazlitt inferred, from a normalized Latin *Terióli: or *Teriólae. But the fact that Friulians still say <Tárvis>, not *Tarvís, makes such a development unlikely. The accent of <Tiról>, if it were Gaulish or Rhaeto-Illyrian in origin, would require a compound having a very short second element (not a suffix) beginning with /l/, and I can think of no such elements.

      As for <Zirl>, if the neut. pl. implied by <Cyreola> is correct, the best guess I have for the 4th-cent. nom. *Tériola is Rhaeto-Illyrian for 'Linden-Clearings', earlier *Tél-iala: with Ill. *[al] > *[ol] in post-tonic syllables (for which there is some other evidence) and dissimilation of *[l...l] to *[r...l] (which is ad hoc).

      Returning to <Tiról>, if my accentual concerns are valid, it cannot be pre-Roman, and a Latinate explanation should be sought. Vulgar Latin *ti:ra:re 'to pull, draw' and *ti:rum 'a pulling, drawing, draught' are reflected in Italian <tirare> and <tiro>, and in other Romance languages. An adjective, VL *ti:ra:lis 'pertaining to draught', is very likely. A pass or bridge wide enough for a pair of draught animals would then be <aditus *ti:ra:lis> or <pons *ti:ra:lis>. The Castrum Maiense near Meran indicates Roman occupation already in the 1st cent. CE. I hypothesize that any vehicular traffic in the area had to go over a pass (or less likely a bridge) which became known as *Ti:ra:lis, masculine in agreement with <aditus> or <pons>, and which gave its name to the locality. The medieval castle built nearby would take the same name, by then Alpine Romance *Tirále. I take this as the source of the 12th-cent. <Tiral(e)> and <Tyral.> as well as the Middle High German citation <Tiräl>. The official form <comites Tirolenses> probably originated with a particular dialectal pronunciation; <Tol(l)> for standard <Tal> is cited from the Eisacktal for comparison. At any rate this scenario explains the accent of <Tiról>. Italian <Tirólo> must come from the official German form, not directly from Alpine Romance.

      Regarding VL *ti:ra:re, I suspect a connection with the equally obscure Latin <ti:ro:> 'recruit, novice, tyro', which serves as a cognomen and is morphologically compatible with Etruscan origin. Possibly an Etr. *ti:r- 'to pull, draw' produced a noun *ti:ru: 'one who pulls or draws, draught animal', specifically 'donkey, jackass', and the Latinized <ti:ro:> in military slang expressed the contempt which experienced soldiers felt toward a recruit. On the other hand *ti:rum and *ti:ra:re would be developments from the objective sense.

      DGK
    • dgkilday57
      ... Cicero (ad Att. 17:13) mentions a bridge called Tirenus (v.l. Tiretius) at Minturnae, the town on the Liris between Latium and Campania. Tirenus pons,
      Message 2 of 12 , Jul 10, 2009
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        --- In cybalist@yahoogroups.com, "dgkilday57" <dgkilday57@...> wrote:
        >
        > [...]
        >
        > Returning to <Tiról>, if my accentual concerns are valid, it cannot be pre-Roman, and a Latinate explanation should be sought. Vulgar Latin *ti:ra:re 'to pull, draw' and *ti:rum 'a pulling, drawing, draught' are reflected in Italian <tirare> and <tiro>, and in other Romance languages. An adjective, VL *ti:ra:lis 'pertaining to draught', is very likely. A pass or bridge wide enough for a pair of draught animals would then be <aditus *ti:ra:lis> or <pons *ti:ra:lis>. The Castrum Maiense near Meran indicates Roman occupation already in the 1st cent. CE. I hypothesize that any vehicular traffic in the area had to go over a pass (or less likely a bridge) which became known as *Ti:ra:lis, masculine in agreement with <aditus> or <pons>, and which gave its name to the locality. The medieval castle built nearby would take the same name, by then Alpine Romance *Tirále. I take this as the source of the 12th-cent. <Tiral(e)> and <Tyral.> as well as the Middle High German citation <Tiräl>. The official form <comites Tirolenses> probably originated with a particular dialectal pronunciation; <Tol(l)> for standard <Tal> is cited from the Eisacktal for comparison. At any rate this scenario explains the accent of <Tiról>. Italian <Tirólo> must come from the official German form, not directly from Alpine Romance.

        Cicero (ad Att. 17:13) mentions a bridge called Tirenus (v.l. Tiretius) at Minturnae, the town on the Liris between Latium and Campania. "Tirenus pons, qui est Minturnis fortasse in fluvio Liri vel in Maricae paludibus."

        > Regarding VL *ti:ra:re, I suspect a connection with the equally obscure Latin <ti:ro:> 'recruit, novice, tyro', which serves as a cognomen and is morphologically compatible with Etruscan origin. Possibly an Etr. *ti:r- 'to pull, draw' produced a noun *ti:ru: 'one who pulls or draws, draught animal', specifically 'donkey, jackass', and the Latinized <ti:ro:> in military slang expressed the contempt which experienced soldiers felt toward a recruit. On the other hand *ti:rum and *ti:ra:re would be developments from the objective sense.

        Cicero thrice mentions an assassin named Numisius Tiro in the Philippics, and <Numisius> is the Latinized form of the Etruscan gentilicium <Numsi>.

        DGK
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