Heill, Haukur!

Well, the first 'g' (in sige/syge) is definitely not a plosive, and seems to have disappeared in later forms. However, the 'g' in gealdor seems to have remained a plosive, and there are examples where this has occurred in other words (ie. gealga "gallows" and geador "to-gether"). I cannot say whether this is dialectical, a result of ON influence or just an idiosyncracy of OE.



Haukur Thorgeirsson wrote:
Heill, Danr!

Consulting my Old English Dictionary (or rather, the glossary in 
Mitchell and Robinson), I think the best interpretation is sige-gealdor, 
cognate with the ON sig-galdr "battle magic" that Haukur suggested. 
I should note that I don't think the compound 'siggaldr' is actually
attested so we should mark it with an asterisk; *siggaldr. The closest
attested word seems to be 'sighljóð' meaning "battle sound".

I'm not fluent in Old English but it seems to me that in 'sige-gealdor'
neither of the g's is a plosive. I assume that when you read 'sigaldry'
you use a stop for the g. So my question is: Does it come from another
dialect? Does it come from Old Norse? Or is the modern word a "learned"
borrowing from the old language that doesn't show the historical phonetic

And of course we could still be dealing with something different :)


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Daniel Bray
School of Studies in Religion A20
University of Sydney NSW 2006 Australia

"Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe." H. G. Wells (1866 - 1946)