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Scientia Potentia Est
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Kurdish etymologies, Garnik Asatrian, Iranian linguistics, hear, bístin, bihístin, wístin
By "Phosphorus, the Silent"
Garnik Asatrian, in an article titled "Kurdish Etymologies" (Iran and the Caucasus, Vol. 3/4 1999-2000, pp. 209-212, published by Brill) proposed etymologies of some Kurdish words including "bihístin/bístin" in sense of "to hear, listen". He suggests, with a sort of uncertainty, Old Iranian "*baud-" as the etymological root of modern Kurdish "bihístin/bístin" through a "*busta-" (due to "-ta", as Asatrian holds). Therefore must be a cognate of another Kurdish "bí(h)n"/bon" meaning "smell".
Asatrian then supposes a secondary "u" > "i" shift, describing it "normal" in Kurdish (referring to his proposed etymology of "bí(h)n" ~ "smell"). And eventually, in order to deal with "bih-", he suggests "analogy with a large series of words with initial bih-".
But what Asatrian misses is the Southern Kurdish variety of the aforementioned verb which appears in form of "wístin". Also Central Kurdish and Southern Kurdish varieties of this verb represent "wís-" or "bís-" as the present stem. Attesting "wístin" and a present stem of "wís-" is indisputably devastating to Asatrian's suggestion for the etymology of Kurdish "b(ih)ístin".
Kurdish "b(ih)ístin/wístin" is most likely derived from the same root as Avestan "vaeda", originally in sense of "know". It is akin to Sanskrit "veda" ~ "know", Latin "videre" ~ "to see", Old Irish "fiuss" ~ "knowledge" as well as English "wise", to name a few. The given Kurdish verb is derived through an additional "-s" attached to the Old Iranian "*waida-", resulting into "*waid-s" > "*widis-". Intervocalic "-d-" results, in this case, into "í" in Central and Southern Kurdish: "wís-", while it gives "-h-" in Northern Kurdish, as is the case with this Kurdish dialect: "*wihís-". Then initial "w-" turns into "b-" as the regular sound change occurring in both Northern (Kurmanji) and Central Kurdish (Sorani): "b(ih)ís-".
As is shown above it is impossible for Kurdish "b(ih)ís-/wís-" to be derived from a proposed Old Iranian form of "*baust-" for two reasons: firstly attestation of "wís-" precludes any Old Iranian forms starting with a "b-". Secondly "-aust-" does not regularly give "-ís-" in Central Kurdish (Sorani), since "u" to "í" shift is not the case with Sorani Kurdish-as opposed to Northern Kurdish (Kurmanji). It is noteworthy that Central Kurdish word for "smell" is "bon" (and occasionally "bén") which cannot justify "bís-" resulting from any "*baust-" at all (Asatrian tries to justify "*baust-" > "bís-" through pointing out "bíhn", resulting from "*baud-na", while missing the Central Kurdish counterpart namely "bon" in this case).
"Wístin/b(ih)ístin" still renders Kurdish language as unique in terms of retaining the Proto-Indo-European root constructed as "*weid-" ~ "to know; to see" (also attested in Avestan "vaeda"); but this time with a semantic change from "know" to" hear".
This article is first released through this blog: "linguist2b.mihanblog.com"
نوع مطلب : Etymology، Iranian Linguistics، اتیمولوژی (ریشه شناسی)،
برچسب ها : اتیمولوژی، زبان شناسی ایرانی، زبان شناسی کردی، گارنیک آساطوریان، Kurdish etymologies، bihistin، Garnik Asatrian،
لینک های مرتبط : Kurdish Etymologies. I (Garnik Asatrian)،
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