Talk:Old Norse Words

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"Until/Till" and "Unto/To" Equivalency?[edit]

Hey, I was just wondering about something.

In the page, you listed "oth" as being the native equivalent of "until/till". However, I was wondering.

Couldn't "unto/to" also be the native equivalents of "until/till", at least in some uses? Etymonline ( says that unto was: "mid-13c., perhaps a modification of until, with southern to in place of northern equivalent till." As it is a Southern formation and the second element is native, could it be considered native?

Thank you in advance. -- 05:19, 20 June 2021 (UTC)

The problem is the un- part. According to the MED, unto was formed by replacing the til in until with to, so it's simply replacing part of a Norse word with a native word. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 05:47, 20 June 2021 (UTC)

West Saxon "To yive" vs Mercian "To yeve"?[edit]

Hey, this is Hǽltam again and I was just wondering about something.

The other day, I was looking at Wiktionary's article for ġiefan (, which is seemingly labelled as the West Saxon OE form of the Mercian and Kentish OE ġefan ( Ġiefan's Wiktionary page also links to Yive's Wiktionary page here (, which also says that it's the West Country dialectal form of "to give" (thus corresponding with OE West Saxon's area?).

Seeing this, I made my (admittedly probably amateurish) attempt at updating ġefan into Modern English (which stems mostly from the Mercian dialect) and found that it seems the vowel of some forms of ġefan that had "e" in OE (like the infinitive) seemingly would've evolved into either "yeve" or "yef" (?).

If these be true, then wouldn't the Mercian ġefan have yielded something unlike "yive" in Modern English, had it survived, or did I make a mistake somewhere? Or is it possible that perhaps the "i" vowel 2nd and 3rd person singular forms would have affected the other vowels and won out in the end, thus yielding "yive" also?

Thank you in advance. -- 05:50, 9 April 2021 (UTC)

The infinitive gefan would have indeed become yeave (verbs inherited from Old English naturally use final /v/ instead of /f/). However, in non-West Saxon dialects, forms with i were pretty common as well, likely from influence of the second and third-person singular forms, and for a while, both forms were used (as seen in Chaucer's works). It's of course impossible to say which form would have become the dominant one, since both forms were later displaced by give/geve (and for whatever reason, give won in the end). Since yive matches give, I chose to go with the less different form and use yive. For the same reason, both yet and yete were used in Middle English, but I went with yet since it matches get. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 07:02, 9 April 2021 (UTC)
All right, I've looked at the Middle English Dictionary entry, and it seems that the e forms outnumber the i forms a lot. I guess that it's likely that yeave would have emerged as the dominant form, so I'll use that instead and list yive as an alternative that one can use if one wants to. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 07:34, 9 April 2021 (UTC)
Nice. Maybe you should update them in your Strong Verbs page too if you haven't yet (if you want to of course).
Also I wonder, what would the conjugation become then? "Yeave, yave, have yeaven"?
Thank you in advance. -- 07:59, 9 April 2021 (UTC)
Yes, the past tense would likely be yave, and the past participle would be yeaven. Here, we assume that it would have stayed as a Class 5 verb. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 08:20, 9 April 2021 (UTC)

Northern "Ilk" vs Southern "I(t)ch"???[edit]

Hey, I saw that you listed "ilk" as the native English word for the Norse "same". However, this reminded me of something.

Etymonline says on its page about "ilk" ( "Of similar formation are each, which and such, but this word disappeared except in Scottish and thus did not undergo the usual southern sound changes."

This seemingly implies that the modern word is Northumbrian (?) in form. While this doesn't necessarily make it "not native/English", I do wonder. What would its theoretical Southern/Mercian form be like? Something like "ich" (as the -lc → -ch)? Or would it have evolved into something else?

Thank you in advance. -- 10:59, 9 April 2021 (UTC)

Yes, I suppose so. The MED entry shows forms with the palatalized consonant. It's not exactly common, since ilk outnumbers it a lot, but since we use which and such, it's pretty likely that if it had survived in actual use (since ilk used in standard speech is a misinterpretation of how the Scottish variant is used), it would have become ich (showing loss of l as in which and such). --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 20:31, 9 April 2021 (UTC)
But then again, I don't think that the OE form ilca has a palatalized consonant, so I think that the word would have become ilk in standard speech, anyway. It would explain why ilk was so widely used in ME instead of ich. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 20:50, 9 April 2021 (UTC)
Ahh I see, so I guess they would've evolved identically by coincidence...
Thanks for the information and explanation c: -- 09:19, 10 April 2021 (UTC)

"To outsend" Separability[edit]

Hey, I just saw that you suggested "to outsend" as a more native replacement for the Norse "to broadcast", as calqued from the Dutch "uitzenden".

However, as the Dutch "uitzenden" has uit- as a separable prefix (according to Wiktionary here, and as the related OE separable prefix ut- seemingly tends to become phrasal verbs with "out" in Modern English (a similar fate to most OE separable prefixes?), shouldn't it be "to send out" instead?

Thanks in advance. -- 05:44, 16 April 2021 (UTC)

I suppose so. Send out is a bit more general than outsend (which I would like to reserve for broadcast, transmit), but I guess that context should clarify which meaning is meant. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 06:34, 16 April 2021 (UTC)

Alternatives for "to get"[edit]

Hey, I was just wondering about something.

For "to get" meaning "to obtain/acquire", I think back then, "to beyet/beget" also had that meaning (possibly before "to get" supplanted it there?), based on the MEC entry here anyhow:

And also, I think for "to get" meaning "to become", wouldn't the obsolete "to worth" be another alternative? Was there any difference in usage/meaning between "to become" and "to worth" or were they full synonyms?

And finally, maybe you could also add an entry for "to get" as in "to understand" (with the native words being "to understand" and/or "to grasp", or perhaps some other dead native words) as it is also a common meaning of "to get", at least colloquially.

Thank you in advance. -- 09:00, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

Yes, beget/beyet originally meant obtain and later came to mean procreate specifically. I thought it'd be more useful to have beyet keep the specialized meaning of beget, which is why I didn't put that in as a replacement and instead listed the backformation yet.
Worth indeed meant become and is a perfectly good native word to replace get meaning become. But since we already have become as a normal alternative, I chose to put that in instead. The page lists only one alternative, but I've already noted that there may be other English replacements that you can use. I'll list worth as an alternative in the notes, though, since it is a rather noteworthy word.
And sure, I'll include a replacement of get meaning understand. It's very easy, since we commonly use understand for it, anyway. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 22:28, 4 May 2021 (UTC)


Hey, I've noticed that you put in oar as a Norse borrowing. I've looked around, however, and I don't see anyone definitively saying that this is a Norse loanword. The closest thing to it is that reflexes of the Proto-Germanic word are attested only in Old English and the North Germanic languages. Do you have any reason to think that this is a Norse loanword? --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 20:32, 22 August 2021 (UTC)

The OED lists it as 'Probably a borrowing from early Scandinavian'
Probably < early Scandinavian (compare Old Icelandic ár, Norwegian åre, Norwegian (Nynorsk) år, Old Swedish ar, ara (Swedish åra, Swedish regional år), Danish åre), further etymology uncertain; perhaps related to ancient Greek οἴαξ, (Epic) οἰήιον tiller, although this presents phonological difficulties. There are no cognates in continental West Germanic languages; however, the word is present (probably as a borrowing from Germanic) in several languages of the Baltic region (compare Saami aiˈro, Finnish airo, Estonian aer, Latvian airis).
--Cascadia (talk) 20:46, 22 August 2021 (UTC)
Thanks, I'll be sure to note that. --AtterCleanser44 (talk) 20:47, 22 August 2021 (UTC)

tiche vs kid[edit]

I found a word in Middle English which seems to be a non-Norse word for kid. Hurlebatte (talk) 16:11, 10 December 2021 (UTC)