Wenja Language: gwar “beasts”, Part 2

kapi ‘monkey’

kapi ‘monkey’. While there’s no word reconstructable for PIE that means ‘monkey’, there is a a connection between Greek kẽpos ~ kẽbos ‘long-tailed monkey’ and Sanskrit kapí- ‘monkey’. Perhaps a borrowing from Semitic languages, where we see Hebrew qōph and Egyptian qephi.

lawhan ‘lion’

lawhan ‘lion’. From PIE *liwi- (?), this root is continued by Greek lís, léōn, Latin leō (> name Leo), Old English lēo, Old High German lewo, Russian lev, and Lithuanian lẽvas. Perhaps a Semitic borrowing; compare Hebrew layiš, Assyrian labbu, Egyptian labu.

lawkari ‘firefly’

lawkari ‘firefly’. Created for Primal, this word is a compound of lawka- ‘light’ (seen in English words such as il-luc-idate [< Latin lūc- ‘light’] and light) plus kari ‘fly’.  Wenja kari derives from PIE *kori- ‘biting insect’, reconstructable from Greek kóris ‘bedbug’, Old Church Slavonic & Russian korĭ ‘moth’. Perhaps built to the root (s)ker- ‘cut’, as found in Wenja karsa ‘cut, carve, stab’.

likarta ‘lizard’
frashlikarta ‘crocodile’

likarta ‘lizard’. Connected with Latin lakerta ‘lizard’, which may have originally meant ‘the jumper’.  We see this root in Greek likertízō ‘jump’.

frashlikarta ‘crocodile’, the ‘king lizard’. For a discussion of fraja ‘rule, stretch out’ and fraji ‘king’ / frashni ‘queen’, see this post.

mali ‘(honey) badger’

mali ‘badger’. The dreaded mali, who doesn’t give a sikar. From PIE *meli-, this word is continued by Latin mēlēs, dialectal Slovenian məlc. Unclear if related to melit- ‘honey’ (Greek méli, Hittite malitt-, Latin mel, Old Irish mil).

mamaf ‘mammoth’

mamaf ‘mammoth’.  Created for Primal, this word was originally mamata in Wenja but was shortened for reasons of gameplay.  A relatively new word, mamaf (as well as English mammoth) has its roots in Russian mammot’, which was probably taken from Ostyak, a Finno-Ugric language of Northern Russia.

nasan ‘rhino’
nasanka ‘tapir’

nasan ‘rhino’. Created for Primal, this word literally means ‘possessing a (large) nose’ (compare dantan ‘sabertooth < possessing (large) teeth’), and is derived from Wenja nas ‘nose’ (< PIE *nās, *nas-), which is connected to English nose, Latin nāsus (> English nasal), Latin nāris ‘nostril’, Old Church Slavonic nosŭ, Avestan nāh-, etc.

nasanka ‘tapir’ is a diminuitive of nasan, literally meaning ‘little rhino’. The -ka- suffix is reconstructable for PIE.

pardaku ‘jaguar’

pardaku ‘jaguar’. To my knowledge, no word is reconstructable for PIE, and so the Wenja form has been modelled on Sanskrit pṛdaku.

pardal ‘leopard’

pardal ‘leopard’. Likely not a word in PIE (it’s rather something like *sinǵʰo-), this word is a loanword from an unknown language. Seen in Greek párdalis, Sogdian pwrδnk, and is connected to Sanskrit pṛdaku in some way.

payska ‘fish’

payska ‘fish’. From PIE *peisk-, this word is continued by Latin piscis (as seen in the astrological sign Pisces), Old Irish iasc, and English fish. *peisk- chosen over the more common root *dʰǵʰuhᵪ- ‘fish’ (Greek ikhthũs, Lithuanian žuvis, Armenian jukn) for reasons of pronounceability. Pictured is the duspayska ‘bad fish’; also seen in the waters of Oros are the manhu ‘carp; cod’, from PIE *mṇhᵪ- (> minnow).

shawi ‘bird’

shawi ‘bird’. From PIE *h₂aw- ‘bird’, continued by Latin avis ‘bird’ (> English avi-ary), Welsh hwyad ‘duck’, Umbrian avi- ‘bird’, Albanian vida ‘dove’, Greek aietós ‘eagle’, Armenian haw ‘bird, chicken’, Avestan vīš ‘bird’, Sanskrit ví- ‘bird’. Connected to Wenja shawya ‘egg’, literally ‘the thing from the bird’, from PIE *h₂owyo- (> Latin ovus, German Ei, English egg).

ula ‘owl’

ula ‘owl’. From PIE *ulu-, as seen in Latin ulucus ‘owl’ and Sanskrit úlūka- ‘owl’.  Probably imitative in origin.

wal ‘wolf’

wal ‘wolf’. From PIE *wḷkwos, this word shows irregular change — we’d expect walkwa, which is actually the Wenja word for ‘wolf pack’. Descendents of this word are found all across Indo-European, for instance in Sanskrit vṛka-, Greek lúkos (seen in English lyc-anthropy), Latin lupus (English lupine), and English wolf.

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