Re: [tied] Re: A few more risque words
From: Piotr Gasiorowski
Bez- for 'lilac', if the toponym really
contains it, may betray Polish influence at least on the folk-etymological
level. In these parts, the word "bez" was applied to lilacs about the 18th
century. *bUzU- (probably a u-stem originally, as if from *bHug^H-u-, cf. Gen.
bzu, bzowina/bzowie 'elder thicket') was the (West and South?) Slavic word for
'elder'. Now for most Poles bez means 'lilac', while 'elder' is qualified as
dziki/czarny bez 'wild/black ...'.
You're perfectly right about the weak
points in my reasoning. Expressive voicing is by no means rare in this kind of
vocabulary, so Baltic bezd- may well be PIE *pezd- plus a little onomatopoeic
irregularity. *pezd- itself has good credentials in the form of Germanic, Latin
and Greek reflexes, though of course, being an expressive word, can
never be regarded as being absolutely above suspicion.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, January 03, 2001 9:07 AM
Subject: [tied] Re: A few more risque words
As for Baltic roots, you could easily point out some apparent
stretches in your reasonings yourself (vocalism, all-mighty analogy,
lot of pure Baltic derivatives like Lith. bezdalas 'fart' or
(toponym with a lot of LILACS in there etc.).
After all, I'm inclined to
think that, as it's often in case with
such semantics, there were was a set
of (semi-onomatopoeic) roots