18 Sept 2007

Ammendments to Etruscan Dictionary Draft 002

Next Upload
Project stats

Ammendments to Draft 002
Program Updates


Draft 003 is set for October 15, 2007.


As of Monday, October 14, 2007:
  • There are 912 secure items in the database.
  • There are 1090 items in total.

Oct 15, 2007

pes [type of food offering] - Modify translation: "sustenance"..
In the Tabula Cortonensis there is this phrase: pes Petrus pavac traulac (TCort, line 6). The last two words seem to be marked with the conjunctive, expressing then the pattern "both X and Y". Petrus is a male praenomen declined in the s-genitive. The grammatical structure of this phrase then must be "[pes] of Petru, both [pava] and [traula]" and it would then seem that pes is comprised of the two last words. If the two last words mean "both food and libation" (relating to funerary rites) then this word might mean something general like "sustenance" which is comprised afterall of both food and drink.

Oct 14, 2007

Atina [gentilicium] - Add item.
Declined in the genitive, Atinal, in TLE 512.
aθ "to clean" - Add item.
Attested in the middle preterite, aθene, in the Tabula Capuana (TCap xii).
auθil "cella, room of a temple" - Add item.
Another word found in the Tabula Capuana in the inessive singular (TCap xii: avθleθ)
cilθ "funerary niche" - Add item.
It has been suggested far too often that this word pertains to a deity or site of a sanctuary. This is complete nonsense and immediately falsified by the consistent application of an inanimate plural to the word! I hardly think gods are normally grammatically inanimate. To say "But anything's possible..." just doesn't cut it for me. The relevant examples are the genitive plural cilθcval (LL 7.viii) and inessive plural cilθcveti (LL 7.xiv). Certainly, given the inessive, again, it would hardly mean "in the god of Cilth". It is assuredly inanimate and indicates a kind of place from this evidence.
epni [type of offering] - modify translation: [type of animal].
Running on a hunch. It seems like the Tabula Capuana is saying to be that a sacrifice is being offered of three animals in the second section. Then after describing that, it seems to me to be saying that another sacrifice, namely "epni", is being added to the previous sacrifice. It also takes the s-genitive which is most common in animate nouns. It's all tentative at the moment but it's getting interesting.
Flanaχrina [gentilicium] - Add item.
Attested in the genitive case as Flenχrinas in ET AT 1.93.
flanzana [type of offering] - Add item.
The word flenzna is found in TLE 100.
hupni "funerary niche" - Modify translation: "ossuary".
While those of Pallottino's school translate this as "niche", I am straying away from this translation and giving it the value of an ossuary since, afterall, it is precisely on an ossuary that this word is apparently found (see TLE 53).
sacni "sacerdotal, sacred offering" - Modify translation: "soul".
See sacniiu below for further details.
sacniiu "small sacerdotal" - Modify translation: "soul, dear soul".
I see one instance of the diminutive form of sacni (found in TLE 319). Looking at the full context of the inscription (Marce Tetnies Veru sacniu), we notice that the name isn't marked for possession but remains in the nomino-accusative. This may be an indication that Marce Tetnie Verus, the full name of the deceased complete with Latin cognomen, is in fact being described with the word sacniu. In this case then, the diminutive ending might be used here as an expression of endearment. Perhaps "Marce Tetnie Verus, dear soul" or something to that effect. Whatever the translation may be, Massimo Pallottino's assignment of "sanctuary" is preposterous in most contexts save those in the Liber Linteus which he chose to translate only in piecemeal fashion.
θuniur "one each" - Modify form: θunur.
I'm just going to think of it as θun plus a distributive ending -ur. Simpler is better.
zaliur "two each" - Modify form: zalur.
Like for θuniur above, I've decided to simplify.
zuχ "to slay" - Add item.
It's found in the middle preterite zuχne (TCap xiv-xv).
zuχana "sacrifice" - Add item.
It's found in TLE 878. Of course, it's also possible that it's the same word as above. I'll figure this all out eventually.

Oct 10, 2007

trut "to give a libation, to pour" - Modify translation and form: "to be given drink; to be poured"; v.tr. -> v.i.
Most verbs in the Liber Linteus (LL) show a passive connotation so the example of LL 11.ii-iii: Trut-um θi θapneś-tś "And then the water was poured from the pitcher" is unindicative of the verb's passiveness in a pro-drop language that freely omits the subject anyway. If we can say that θ-participles only marks intransitive verbs, the existence of truθt in LL 5.xviii would hint that this is indeed a passive verb afterall. However in LL 5.xviii we have the phrase Ais cemnac truθt (ais = "god" and cemnac = adj.) where the head of the noun phrase, "god", is naturally animate and unpourable! I suggest that this verb is used differently based on the animacy of the subject. Thus "to be given drink" for animate subjects and "to be poured" for inanimate subjects. Context-dependant verbs also exist in English and many other languages (e.g. "The farmer feeds the cow." yet "The cow feeds.").

Oct 8, 2007

hil "land" - Modify translation: enclosed land.
I'm swayed by a certain convincing etymology I just discovered and I also believe that this may fit the contexts of this word in both Etruscan and Rhaetic inscriptions much better. I now feel that this isn't just any untamed land, but rather land that is in some way enclosed by borders.
hilar "to protect" - Modify translation: to enclose.
No guarantees on this one. I'm still searching for a secure translation but it seems reasonable that this verb is related to the noun hil with a denominal suffix -ar-.
tular "to mark a boundary, to encircle, to surround" - Modify translation: "to mark (as a boundary)".
I'm trying to make the translation more concise when possible.
tular "boundary stone, terminus" - Add item.
Now I have both the noun tular and the verb, which then explains the coexistence of both tularias (a plural noun in the genitive) and tularu (a passive participle).
Viśal "Faesulae [city]" - Add item.
This is based on Viśl from TLE 675, however I'm having trouble once again with "experts" who give multiple, wildly contradicting versions of the same inscription and no pictures around anywhere, of course. How annoying is that?

Oct 6, 2007

Amcie [gentilicium] - Modify form: Amicie.
Its origin is Latin name Amicius afterall and syncope takes care of -i- in later forms.
apirinθ "sanctified things" - Add item.
Apirθina [female praenomen] - Add item.
Heramina [gentilicium] - Modify form: Hirumina.
Considering the male praenomen Hirume, it wouldn't be entirely wise for me to connect this with Herame any longer, would it (TLE 867: Hirumesi "for Hirume")? As always, I will adapt. Mea culpa.
Hirume [male praenomen] - Add item.
See Heramina for further explanation.
Hulχenie [gentilicium] - Modify form: Fulχenaie.
Merging also with pre-existing gentilicium Fulχena.
neś "dead person" - Add item.
See neśna for further explanation.
neśna "sepulcher" - Add item.
I don't feel completely secure with the standard translation of the root neś- and its disturbing, forced connections to Indo-European *neḱ- "to die", but given the context of this hapax, the status quo translation is better than what I can come up with for the moment. Certainly however, there is no connection here with Indo-European and any similarities between these two roots are purely accidental.
sacniu "small sacerdotal" - Modify form: sacniiu.
Technically speaking, this word is the combination of sacni and the diminutive suffix -iu and so I opt for this more syllabic spelling even though it's attested as sacniu with only one iota in TLE 319. This is not a problem however considering the example of tiiur 'moon' which is often written tiur but is proven to also be writable with two iotas (TLE 749: tiiurś). To be clear, the second -i- is meant only to write the consonant [j] however, not a long vowel.
θes "to dawn, to rise (as of the sun)" - Modify type: v.tr. -> v.i.
Whoops, this should be intransitive since the verb merely conveys a state. It's participle form must also be *θesθ as a result which then might explain the etymology of attested word θesθu "eastward".
Θestia [female praenomen] - Add item.
Veru [cognomen] - Add item.
A foreign name, like all Etruscan cognomen so it seems, based on Latin verus "truth". The name is attested in TLE 319.

Oct 4, 2007

Hulχenie [male praenomen] - Modify form: Fulχenaie.
The name is equivalent to the Latin name Fulcinius. After changing the 'h' to 'f', I also felt compelled to merge this entry with my pre-existing record, Fulχena, also a gentilicium. All of this is now under Fulχenaie. Most efficient.

Oct 3, 2007

Lusce [male praenomen] - Modify translation: [cognomen].
I'm breaking down and accepting some names as cognomen. I have a minimalistic approach and wanted to do my homework on Etruscan cognomen to be sure. It appears that the name Lart Vipi Lusce in the Tabula Cortonensis demonstrates clearly that some Etruscan names did indeed have Latin-derived cognomen from time to time, although it doesn't seem to be the norm in Etruria. The name Lusce is of course from the Latin adjective luscus "half-blind" and not Etruscan.
Palpe [cognomen] - Add item.
From the Latin cognomen Balbus.
Tiφile [gentilicium] - Add item.
From the Greek name Δίφιλος.
Venu [male praenomen] - Add item.
Found in the genitive in both TLE 331 and TLE 711.

Oct 2, 2007

Nufrizna [gentilicium] - Modify form: Nuparzina.
The name is not only written in the genitive as Nufrznal in ET Pe 1.307 but also represented in Latin as Noborsinia in CIE 3864. The Latin form suggests that -f- was softened from an earlier unaspirated -p-, which would have sounded much like a 'b' to Roman ears.
Papas [gentilicium] - Add item.
I'm not sure yet but there is a Greek name Πάπιας Papias which I'm thinking might be related to this. It wouldn't be the first Greek name in Etruscan (c.f. Heraclite, from Greek Ηρακλείδης Hērakleidēs) .
Sutarina [gentilicium] - Add item.
Not only found as Sutrinaś in CIE 4469 but the name is also confirmed in Latin as Sudernia (CIE 837), based on an unmarked nomino-accusative form. Unaspirated Etruscan stops like 't' are normally represented in Latin as voiced stops.

Sep 30, 2007

Semala [deity] - Add item.
Found on a mirror (CII 2468) as Semla.

Sep 29, 2007

Caiie [gentilicium] - Add item.
Carcu [gentilicium] - Add item.
Carχvana [gentilicium] - Modify form: Carcvana.
Carχvanaie [gentilicium] - Modify form: Carcvanaie.
Festaraie [gentilicium] - Modify form: Vestaraie.
Haθlia [male praenomen] - Add item.
Haθlials is found in TLE 324, indicating family descent with a double genitive.
hevan "every, each" - Modify form: heva.
TLE 635 shows heva. If the word is declined like a demonstrative pronoun, the nominative is unmarked while the accusative is marked in -n.
Latiiu [gentilicium] - Add item.
Ramvaza [female praenomen] - Modify form: Remza.
Tute [male praenomen] - Modify translation: [gentilicium].
Tlapu [gentilicium] - Modify form: Talápu.
Tlapuna [gentilicium] - Modify form: Talápuna.
Vipieθu "member of the Vipie family" - Add item.

Sep 28, 2007

ca "this" - Deleting one entry under it: ka.
This is from TLE 920 that Pallottino claims contains ka, while others claim ica. Obviously, the crux of this disagreement lies in whether it's iota followed by gamma, or whether the two are part of the same letter kappa. Considering that the text dates to the 1st c. BCE when a spelling with kappa wasn't common anymore, I would have to reject Pallottino here and accept a typical 1st century spelling of the word. It helps to have the picture before me as well (click here for a drawing of it online published in Studi Etruschi; a search for 'tusuvas' in this book yields the picture). Grrrr, damn these insidious, transcription lies.
Ciiarθia [male praenomen] - Add item.
Tusnu [gentilicium] - Add item.
Venel [gentilicium] - Modify translation: [male praenomen].
Stupid typo. Consider it eradicated.

Sep 27, 2007

hiiuls "owl" - Add item.
Found confirmation of the word hiuls found in TLE 333 (aka ET Vc 7.1) that Pallottino claimed means "screech-owl" although I'm still looking for a clear picture of it to know precisely what this analysis is based on. I wouldn't suppose anyone has a clear picture to share... would they? I've added a second 'i' in the heading form due to phonotactic reasons; the second 'i' serves as consonantal glide [j], thereby evening out the syllable structure.
Laranθ [male praenomen] - Add item.
The syncopated form Larnθ is found in TLE 606.
Scarpe [gentilicium] - Add item.
Found in TLE 606.

Sep 26, 2007

Atiie [gentilicium] - Add item.
Found in the genitive in TLE 105.
Carsu [gentilicium] - Add item.
Found in the locative in TLE 108.
Curuna [gentilicium] - Add item.
Found in the genitive in TLE 104.
em "to take away" - Modify translation: "to remove"
That just makes it more to-the-point, n'est-ce pas?
Metru [male praenomen] - Add item.
Found in TLE 370 in the phrase Metru menece.
namer "cup" - Add item.
Although there is already the word naper "cup" in my list, namer is clearly inscribed in the photo I have of TLE 366 (aka Vetulonia's Cup), and naper is clearly inscribed in a photo I have of the Cippus Perusinus. I believe the words are related but their distinct forms may require separate entries. I still haven't found the etymological origin of this word that might offer a clue.
siianś - Deleting a genitive-inflected entry: sanśaś.
Pallottino makes reference to a word sanśaś which in fact is a corruption of the text in TLE 104 (n.b. Rix transcribes it as two words: sam . man). I side with Rix because the latter makes better sense in the context. Furthermore, siianś is otherwise a type II noun (i.e. it takes l-genitive) as in sanśl inscribed in TLE 624 and 651. Damn you, Pallottino, and your pretend words! Grrr.
Sisupe "Sisyphus [myth]" - Add item.
Y'know, that guy, Sisyphus. The guy pushing a giant rock up a steep hill in the bowels of Hades forever and ever and ever. Sucks to be him. The name is found in TLE 89.
Svincina [gentilicium] - Add item.
It smells suspiciously of a missegmentation of "marces vincina" with the first name in the genitive into "marce svincina" (since Vinacena is already attested) but I'll pretend it's a separate name for now.
tuθina - Modify type and translation: adj. -> ni.(II); "of the community" -> "district".

Sep 24, 2007

Fanacna [gentilicium] - Add item.
Present in TLE 652 in the genitive Fanacnal which I just recently blogged about in More published errors on Etruscan.
Fulvenia [gentilicium] - Modify form: Fuluvenia
Based on the gentilicium Fuluve.
hil "property, private land" - Modify translation: "land"
Logical simplification is godliness.
iś [type of offering] - Modify translation: "tray"
Iχśiun [myth] - Add item.
An Etruscanized name for Greek Ixion.
lup "to cross over, to pass on" - Delete duplicate.
Don't worry. I'm on top of it. It's a side-effect of my lazy programming. I know where the bug lies and I just need to get up off my ass and fix it. Sometimes when I modify entries, it creates an unintended duplicate if I do things in a certain way. Grrr. Computers! Bah! :)
malvá "to be blessed" - Modify type: v.tr. -> v.i.
The verb should be intransitive, naturally. Oopsy daisy. Also I found the expected intransitive passive participle form (muleθ) hiding in a corner of TLE 173. There ya go, little buddy, now you can join your friends in the malvá entry. Hehe.
Paziethe [gentilicium] - Modify form: Pazieθe.
I improperly coded the theta. Another typo successfully eradicated.
Ramaθa [female praenomen] - Modify form: Ramvaθa.
While forms like Ramuθa can be blamed on syncope (reduction of 'a' to schwa written as 'u', one might claim), I have another verb ramva [action regarding sacrificial animals] in the database. I really think that this is where the name comes from, with the feminine ending -θa attached as we see in lautniθa 'freewoman'.
Ramaza [female praenomen] - Modify form: Ramvaza.
For the same reasons as Ramaθa above.

Sep 23, 2007

Apulie [gentilicium] - Modify form: Apulaie
Already have a name Apula (ET Cm 2.2: Apulas) on which it's naturally based.
Caia [female praenomen] - Modify form: Caiia.
This name is based on the male form Cai with a feminine ending attached.
Eiasun [myth] - Modify form: Aiásun.
It just makes better sense to me. The name is of Greek origin but the prothetic vowel is due to the pan-Aegean phonotactic peculiarity which prevents words from beginning with [j]. The same disregard for initial [j] is noticeable in Minoan inscriptions where words beginning with A- can also be written with the character for YA-. I can't believe no one noticed that peculiarity besides me. Oh well.
eliunθ "olive farmer" - Modify form: elaiunθ.
The word is attested as eliunθ in the Tabula Cortonensis however it's understood by scholars that the word is of Greek origin, namely, ελαιϝών. I would think that the earliest form of this word had the diphthong as it appears in Greek but that syncope eroded the word down as it did with all others.
epni [type of offering] - Delete duplicate.
I hang my head in shame. Even worse, one of the entries had epninai while the other had epnina based on TLE 28. Part of the problem is that I'm still confused about what the word means. If anyone can take a crack at figuring out what Rix transcribes as "epninaitale" and the rest of this text, be my guest.
Tlamunus [gentilicium] - Modify form: Talámunus.
It's from Greek Τελαμώνιος showing that a vowel between tau and lambda probably existed originally before syncope took over in Etruscan.
van [intransitive verb of unknown meaning] - Add item.
The word may exist as vane-c with the conjunctive -c "and" in the Tabula Capuana (TCap 2.xv). I think it's also a reasonable possibility that the verb is the source of the Etruscan goddess name Vanth which would then be a descriptive participle of the deity's function or qualities. Even more interesting is if that is true, the verb is intransitive because of its choice of participial ending. (It seems that transitive participles take -u instead.)
Velθiena [gentilicium] - Modify form: Velθaiena.
Derived from the name Velθaie which in turn is based on velθa.
Velθienaθu "Velthiena family member" - Modify form: Velθaienaθu.

Sep 22, 2007

am "to be" - Modify type: v.tr. -> v.i.
Silly me. Yes, yes, I know, the verb "to be" is an intransitive verb since it describes a state of being, not an action, but I was too busy entering in tonnes of data to pay attention to these details. I just automatically made the default verb type "transitive" by default. Bah! Out, out, damn spot!

Sep 21, 2007

ecina "hedgehog" - Modify form and translation: ecnia [animate noun of unknown meaning].
Okay, this translation is giving me the sweats. So far, I need more input and while it's tempting to link it to Greek, I'm going to play it safe for now and just call it a type-I animate noun with unknown meaning until I find something more substantial. Whatever the real meaning of genitive ecnas, it is likely that it's related to ecnia on the Magliano Tablet, which would represent the nomino-accusative form. Depalatalization of 'i' after liquids like 'n' is well attested in various words and names (e.g. Turnu < *Turaniu "little Turan").
Truia "Troy [city]" - Add item.
I can't believe I missed that important one. Apologies. We have both Truia [TLE 74] in the nomino-accusative case and Truies [TLE 329] in the genitive.

Sep 19, 2007

ecina "hedgehog" - Add item.
Okay, I'm honestly not going to bet my life on this one. However, if this is borrowed from Greek echinos "hedgehog" (specifically Doric dialect like all the other Greek borrowings in Etruscan), then TLE 75 is apparently speaking about "a sacrifice of a hedgehog" (in the genitive: ecnas). Is that a typical offering to give? Is there precedent in Roman religion? I honestly need to verify this... {searching, searching}... No way! Blow me down: [link]!! Hahaha. Excuse me while I laugh myself to death! (See September 20, 2007 under ecina)
hivu [type of libation offering] - Add item.
niθu [type of libation offering] - Add item.
snena "on top, over" - Add item.
On lines 16 and 17 of the Tabula Capuana.
tiria "metal; metallic" - Add adjective and noun.
Found on the Tabula Capuana, appearing to modify the noun tar without further endings. However, it is found in the genitive on the first line in the phrase savcnes sa tirias, making me feel that it's also a noun on its own. This behaviour is similar to how vacil "votive" is used. There is probably little distinction made between noun and adjective in Etruscan in general, similar to the situation in Latin and its daughter languages, e.g. bona "good" (adj.) -> "the good" (n.f.).
urθan "to give, to offer" - Modify form: urθ.
It seems TLE 75 has urθri, showing that the root is in fact urθ-. So attested urθanike must then be the middle perfect preterite.
ziula "burnt offering" - Add item.
It's found twice on the Tabula Capuana in the genitive case (on lines 16 and 17). I'm very excited about this word for morphological reasons that shall remain mysterious for now.

Sep 18, 2007

śuri [unknown inanimate noun] - Modify translation and type: "bronze"; ni.(II) -> ni.(II) & adj.
I'm working on a hunch. It seems that bronze is a material that follows this word around. It's written on bronze plates and bronze statuettes. Seems reasonable but I will pursue this vector further to see where it takes me. On the Tabula Capuana then, vacil śipir śuri may refer to a bronze votive object called a śipir... whatever the hell a śipir is supposed to be.


Sep 22, 2007: My system is now hyperlink enabled

I coded a really cool addition to my web-based system so that I can hyperlink different language databases I have together and also to relate different words within the same database together with ease. Using Wikipedia-like syntax, I just enter "{{l dbs itemID}}" into any word entry where dbs is the short code for the database (min = minoan, ecyp = eteocypriot, etr = etruscan) and itemID is the automatically generated number referring to a particular word entry. You may say... "So what???" at which point I go "Are you kidding me, people??". The cool thing is that I programmed the system to automatically display the gobbleygook above as the word and its translation in question. So, when I relate one word to another, whatever I change in one entry will automatically change all entries that link to it! Borg power, baby!


  1. There is a second century bishop of Hierapolis named Παπίας. According to inscriptions, other men from the area have the name too, and it looks like it is a local Phrygian name with a meaning of something like Διόγενες.

  2. The thing I want to know is, besides bishop Papias himself, what other person is securely named Papias? Furthermore, are there any people given this name a few centuries beforehand, say in "BCE times"? Aside from this, it seems that it's just a divine epithet and this is what holds me back a little. I still want to uncover direct explanation of the etymology of Papias. In theory, Etruscan Papas could just as well be explained with native elements (papas "of the uncle"). So it's an interesting case to ponder on.

  3. According to the Lexicon of Greek Personal Names there is evidence for 208 individuals with the name. Some of them could well be BCE. For further details as to time and place, one would have to look at the paper edition.

    My feeling is that the name would well be explained with native elements.

  4. Wow! What an interesting resource! I never would have known that such a thing existed, thanks. What they should do to improve on that website is provide dates and sources of these names. Surely, they've collected this information too so they should include it in their database. Oh well. It's a start.

  5. On the topic of the verb "trut": a meaning other than "pour" might not be so necessary if this verb worked on the same principle as the Hittite word for "to drink". Again and again, when I read translations of Hittite rituals, I come across people "drinking a god" (exactly which god varies). Whether this means that the fluid being drunk represents the deity or part of the deity's body (like in communion), or whether it's implied to mean "drinking TO a god", I'm not sure.
    Just thought I'd throw that possibility in there.

  6. Interesting suggestion, Seadog Driftwood. Indeed, "drinking a god" is found in Hittite texts and is interpreted to mean "toasting to a god." I'll have to find time to look into how this might connect, if at all, to the meaning of trut. The idea of a Pre-Etruscan cultural loanword here is certainly tempting. My above-mentioned suspicion of a differing meaning (active vs. passive) dependent on the animacy of the subject could still hold as well. Food for thought!