Re: Rim-?

From: tgpedersen@...
Message: 8852
Date: 2001-08-30

--- In cybalist@..., "Piotr Gasiorowski" <gpiotr@...> wrote:
> There was also an Old Church Slavic variant with <u>: <rumU, rumIsk-
> (cf. OHG Ro:ma/Ru:ma, Gothic Ru:ma, Arabic Ru:m 'Byzantium' for a
similar treatment of the vowel). This <rum-> can't be a very old
loan, for otherwise foreign *u: would have yielded OCS <y>, so it was
probably picked up somewhere in the Balkans.
Conceivably even from Gothic?

The form *rimU (OCS rimU, Russian Rim, Polish Rzym, Czech R^ím, etc.)
must come from the same or similar direction as Polish
<krzyz*> 'cross' (virtual *kriz^I), ultimately from <crucem> via some
north Romance dialect and I suppose Bavarian (Old Bavarian <kruzi>)
and/or East Central German (cf. also Polish z*yd, Hungarian
zsidó 'Jew' (ultimately from <iu:daeum>). There must be a detailed
solution waiting to be found somewhere (I know of an article by
Stieber that discusses these words, but my access to library
resources is limited at the moment).
cf. Da. <kryds> (the /d/ is mute and unetymological, probably in
imitation of German <Kreuz>), presumably from Low German. (There's a
curious distiction in the Scandinavian languages between
<kors> "upright cross (also in a religious context)" and <kryds> "a
cross with arms of even length at 45 degr (non-religious)". THe
former points to English influence.

I can only speculate that something like dialectal *ru:m-isk- 'Roman'
became *rümisch ~ *rimisch (cf. jiddisch), was borrowed into Slavic
as *rim-Isk- and yielded *rim- as a back-formation. I wish I knew
more about German historical dialectology.
There's been speculation that umlaut, although only attested
independently in the various Germanic branches, may go back to Proto-
Germanic, except in the few sources we have it wasn't registered
since the still preserved -i- of the next syllable made it a
predictable phenomenon. Suppose Gothic had it before wiping it out by
analogy (as it did to Verner's law, which would indicate a general
intolerance of irregulity in the language). Then Gothic at one early
stage would have Ru:ma "Rome" and rü:m-isk- "Roman" all packed and
ready to go for the Proto-Slavs, which they might have met when
trading up the river (ru:m- being re-borrowed or modified later)?

> Piotr

But as you might have guessed I wondered: why Ru:ma in Gothic, when
that's Old Latin and Etruscan (and by extrapolation(?) Lemnian). When
did the Goths arrive in the North Pontic area and who did they find