Re: [tied] Digest Number 114: PIE root 'to fart'/Pordoselene

From: Patrick McConvell
Message: 17224
Date: 2002-12-19

The 'Encyclopaedia of Indo-European culture' (Mallory & Adams, 1997:194)
has an entry under 'fart' which gives alternative PIE roots *perde/o and
*pezd as mentioned by Piotr, and attestations from all branches except
Tocharian and Hittite, noting that the texts we have in such languages are
unlikely to discuss such matters (counterexamples from ancient texts would
be welcome).

The word seems to occur in place names, which could be another source of
evidence. For instance,
the name of Pordoselene an ancient city on the island Cunda or Ali Bey
next to Ayvalik on the Aegean coast of Turkey is thought to be built on the
Greek porde: 'fart n.' (cf perdomai 'fart v.). Later occupants attempted to
remove the bad odour by renaming it Poroselene (Jones 'Cities of the
Eastern Roman Empire 1937/1998:86, citing Pliny). Later it became
Moskonisia (said to be derived from Gk. moskhos 'musk, sweet smelling').

Pat McConvell