Re: [tied] Re: Words versus Roots

From: Glen Gordon
Message: 17734
Date: 2003-01-18

>Unlike te word for "sister" we heave no means of analysing the name
>for "brother", apart from isolating the final <-ter> itself, as in
>the case of "mother" and "father". But we can offer no explanation
>for the root *bHra:-.

The word *swesor does appear to be composed of *swe "self" or "of
one's own (family)" and *-sor, a feminine ending.

However, for the word *bHraxter-, the suffix appears to be *-xter-
(traditional *-h2ter-) as was suggested by others on this List. The
suffix is found on the other family terms (*maxter-, *pxter-) and I
believe that it came about through analogy with *pxter- which we
know is not divisible as **p-xter- but rather as *px-ter-, meaning

So, due to the purely analogical origin of the family suffix *-xter-,
the stem *bHraxter- must surely have arose from an earlier inherited
root without this ending, probably signifying the same. Thus we're left
with a root *bHrax- to contend with. That much appears pretty clear.

Now perhaps I'm overanalysing but this is my theory on the origin of
the "brother" term. I can't help but note Etruscan's "brother" word
/ruva/. To me, it could be related to IE if we presume a Tyrrhenian
protoform *browa. In Etruscan, *browa would lose the first consonant of
the initial cluster in the same manner as Late Tyrrhenian *tresena
"Trojan, of Troy" appears to become Etruscan /ras'na/ "Etruscan".

The IndoTyrrhenian link would be *bar-axWe, literally "carried brother"
or rather "baby brother", becoming Mid IE *berawe and early Late IE
*bHrou(-s&). This form would have become nominative **bHro:us if it
weren't for the above *-xter- fiasco, which first resulted in
*bHr(o)uxter-, then via analogy with *ma-xter-, the term would have
been simplified to *bhraxter-.

- gLeN

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