- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Larry J. Swain" <theswain@o...>
> A discussion on a related list brought up a language question for
> what if any loan words from Greek are there in Gothic? After allthe
> since our principle source for the language is the translation of
> Bible from Greek, one would expect a few. IS there a listanywhere?
> Larry Swain
I don't know of a complete list, but if you wanted to compile one G.
Koebler's dictionary would probably be the place to start
http://www.koeblergerhard.de/publikat.html ). The main source of
Greek loans is of course proper names - but apart from that there
are surprisingly few. These tend to be technical religious terms,
many ultimately from Aramaic:
daimonareis 'devil-possessed person'
aipistaule 'epistle, letter'
papa 'priest, presbyter'
praitauriaun 'pretorium, judgement-hall'
praizbytairei 'church authority, elders'
sabbato, sabbatus 'sabbath'
aiwaggeljo 'gospel, the Christian community'
alabalstraun 'alabaster container'
gazaufylakio 'temple treasury'
kaurbaunan 'temple treasury'
kaurban 'a donation to the temple'
Sometimes the same word is borrowed in one place, but translated at
diabaulus/diabulus 'devil' (besides the native: unhultho, unhultha &
taitrarkes 'tetrarch, one of the 4 governors of Palestine in Roman
times' (also translated fidur-ragineis)
laigaion 'Legion' (name of demon possessed man, in Mark's gospel -
but in Luke, the same Gk. word legiwn is rendered with the native
It seems to be a deliberate practise to translate Greek where
possible, but leave Aramaic unaltered:
Gaiaina 'Gehennah, hell' (but also: halja 'hell, death' - in this
case the Greek a(des = halja, but the Aramaic derived Geenna is
rabbei 'Rabbi' (but laisareis, talzjands 'teacher')
ailoe ailoe lima sabakthani 'my God, my God, why hast thou forsaken
me' (the following explanation of the meaning is fully translated)
Most often even religious concepts are translated into native words:
himins 'heaven', alhs 'temple', maithms 'gift to temple',
sauths 'sacrifice', gudja 'priest', sinista 'elder', etc.
Far more common than outright loans, probably, are calques (loan
translations) like fidurragineis - but without other texts it's hard
to gauge the true extent of these. Curiously, a lot of the not so
technical Greek loans already existing in Gothic at the time of the
Bible translation seem to have come through the medium of Latin, as
far as it's possible to tell, e.g. skaurpjo 'scorpion' (cf.
Kortland "The Origins of the Goths" -
http://www.kortlandt.nl/publications/art 198e.pdf ).
Another set of Greek loans are the names of the days of the week.
Though not recorded in Gothic, Greek based day-names are thought to
have come via Gothic to the South German dialects:
Tuesday: *ARJAUSSDAGS, or *Areinsdags ( < Gk. arhos h(mera ) - NHG
Arestag, Ertag, Irtag, Irchtag, Erchtag, Erichtag
Thursday: *PINTADAGS, or *paintedags ( < Gk. pempth h(mera ) -
Pfinztag - NHG dialects: Pfincztag, Pfünztag, Pfinztag, Pfinstag
Friday: *PAREINSDAGS ( < Gk. paraskeuh ) - Pol. pia,tek (That comma
is supposed to be a nasal mark under the "a"), Cz. Pátek
Saturday: *SAMBATODAGS ( < Gk. Sambaton ) - OHG sambaztag > NHG
Samstag; OBulg. Sabota, Rum. Sambata, Hung. Szombat, Pers. Samba
Hope that helps,
The declension of Greek nouns in Gothic:
Other Gothic dictionaries & glossaries:
The Gothic Corpus:
An essay emphasizing (overemphasizing?) the artificiality of the
Gothic Bible & its dependence on the Greek original: