Thursday, August 31, 2006


In what I hope to be the first installment in a long series, I present to you a discussion of an interesting Proto-Indo-European (PIE) root:

Köhler's Indogermanisches Wörterbuch (letter E):

*eibh-, *oibh-, *i̯̪ebh-, idg., V.: nhd. beischlafen; ne. copulate; RB.: Pokorny 298 (439/20), ind., gr., ill., germ., slaw.;

Pokorny's Indogermanisches Etymologisches Woerterbuch (p. 298):
Root: eibh- (: oibh-), i̯ebh-
English meaning: to copulate
Material: Ai. ya/bhati 'futuit'; ... ; slav. *i̯ebo: 'futuo:' in russ. jebu/, jeti/, skr. je\be^m, je\bati (mit neugebildetem Infinitiv), usw.

To illustrate, let me quote from Calvert Watkins' phenomenal How to Kill a Dragon. In chapter 25, professor Watkins describes a fascinating Indo-European ritual (involving horses, young women and some erotic imagery) known in the Vedas as Aśvamedha. The ritual was accompanied by a "litany of mantras" one of which is given below:

ámbe, ámbike, ámbālike
ná me yabhati káś caná;
sásasty aśvakáḥ

Compare the English translation provided by Watkins:

Mother, dear mother, little mother,
noone is fucking me;
the bad little horse is asleep.

And a Slovak translation by me (courtesy of Monier-Williams Sanskrit dictionary) which is a bit more faithful to the original. Not that professor Watkins is a bad translator, far from it. It's just that the English language has lost many PIE structures most Slavic languages have preserved. Like the the case system (Nominative: amba, Vocative: ambe!) and the diminutive form (amba - ambika - ambālika). NB the first line:

Mamo, mamko, mamičko,
nikto ma nepojebe;
zlý koník už zaspal.

According to professor Watkins, the verb yabhati was considered as vulgar in Vedic Sanskrit as its counterparts are in modern English or Russian (HTKAD p. 274, footnote 12). I wish he'd included more evidence (and if anyone has any, please come forward), but nevertheless, I think we can take his word for it. So there.

It is interesting that of all the offshoots of the PIE tree, this particular root with all its connotations has only survived (in pristine condition, nonetheless) in Slavic languages where - as I'm sure anyone will tell you - it still enjoys immense popularity. So remember, my Slavic friends: when life gets you down and you feel the need, do not hesitate to use any and all words derived from this root. By doing so, you are certainly not contributing to the corrosion of our society as some would have you believe. On the contrary: you are engaging in a healthy activity which relieves your frustration and cleanses your mind of aggression. And all of that in a way which lets us express and celebrate our Indo-European heritage. After all, it's only Sanskrit and us!


delmo said...

kraaaaaaaaaaaaaaasny preklad :D

Matt said...

One day it is my dream to compile and publish a lexicon of reconstructable Proto-Indo-European obscenities, like for example this root discussed, or for another example the PIE *sókˆr 'shit' word from Greek σκώρ, σκάτος, Hittite š/zakkar, Russ. sor, PGerm. *skarna-.

I assure you, it will happen. One day!!! *shakes fist*

Anonymous said...

29047126483369175 I play dofus Replica Watches for one year, I Replica Rolex Watches want to get some Replica Watch kamas to buy Replica Chanel Watches item for my character. So, I search "Replica Swiss Watches" on google and found many website. As Exact Replica Graham Watch the tips from the forum, I just review the Swiss Replica Watches websites and choose some Replica Montblanc Watches quality sites to Replica Cartier Watches compare the price, and go to their Replica Breguet Watches online support to make Replica Breitling Watches the test. And Last Chaos Gold I decide to use Replica BRM Watch at the end. And Tag Heuer Replica Watch that is the Replica IWC Watch beginning..

Lin Shijun said...

huarache shoes
michael kors handbags
fitflops outlet
yeezy boost 350
michael kors handbags
michael kors outlet online
yeezy boost 350
louboutin shoes
michael kors outlet
kobe shoes,kobe zoom,kobe bryant shoes
michael kors outlet online
ralph lauren online,cheap ralph lauren
tiffany and co jewelry
oakley store online
yeezy shoes
adidas stan smith
hermes belt for sale
kobe sneakers
oakley sunglasses,oakley outlet sunglasses
nike huarache
ralph lauren online
nike air huarache
air max thea
michael kors factory outlet
michael kors outlet online
chrome hearts
nike air max thea
nike air huarache
oakley sunglasses,oakley vault,oakley sunglasses cheap,oakleys,,sunglasses outlet,cheap oakley
adidas tubular runner
louis vuitton handbags
cheap mlb jerseys
michael kors outlet online

Hua Cai said...

chrome hearts sunglasses
uggs on sale
michael kors outlet
coach outlet
pandora outlet
true religion uk
louis vuitton handbags
michael kors outlet store
nike outlet store
cheap nike shoes sale
adidas outlet
ray-ban sunglasses
air max 90
ugg boots
coach outlet online
polo ralph lauren
louis vuitton outlet online
michael kors outlet
adidas shoes
fitflops shoes
ugg boots
michael kors handbags
ugg uk
chicago blackhawks
michael kors outlet
lebron shoes
uggs outlet
tods shoes sale
air max 90
michael kors outlet
michael kors outlet
ferragamo shoes
coach outlet online
nike free running
nike free running
20160804caihuali said...

louis vuitton outlet
christian louboutin paris
polo ralph lauren
celine outlet
new england patriots jerseys
coach factory outlet
polo ralph lauren
kevin durant shoes 7
louboutin pas cher
michael kors outlet clearance
tod's shoes
moncler outlet
adidas uk
louis vuitton handbags uk
louis vuitton handbags
michael kors
uggs for cheap
michael kors handbags
coach factory outlet
oakley sunglasses
nike basketball shoes
coach outlet store online clearances
ugg slippers
louis vuitton outlet
kate spade handbags
louis vuitton borse
nike air max 90
louis vuitton outlet
kate spade handbags

raybanoutlet001 said...

ed hardy uk
nike air force 1
cheap michael kors handbags
michael kors handbags outlet
birkenstock sandals
michael kors outlet
supra shoes sale
michael kors handbags
michael kors handbags wholesale

dong dong23 said...

celine outlet
ugg sale
ugg boots
cheap ray ban sunglasses
toms shoes
tiffany and co
toms wedges
prada handbags
canada goose jackets
michael kors outlet

Unknown said...

tiffany jewelry
nike air huarache
tiffany jewelry
cheap jordans
minnesota vikings jerseys
christian louboutin shoes
michael kors outlet
tiffany and co outlet
nike roshe
michael kors outlet store

琐事 said...

pittsburgh steelers jersey
chaussure louboutin pas cher
nike outlet
golden state warriors jerseys
abercrombie and fitch
michael kors handbags
eagles jerseys
pandora charms
buffalo bills jerseys
versace shoes