Mysa or Syra (whey); Subglacial Volcanism Definitions

Beverly Flanigan flanigan at OAK.CATS.OHIOU.EDU
Tue Jul 17 17:02:32 UTC 2001

Pardon me if this seems naive (I'm not a lexicographer), but why should all
these Icelandic terms (or terms from any other language) be in the OED
unless they've been clearly attested as borrowings into English???

At 11:55 AM 7/17/01 -0400, you wrote:
>    I wrote "myrsa"--the one term that's wrong.  It seems that there are
> two Icelandic terms for "whey"--"mysa" and "syra."  Neither is in the OED.
>    From ICELAND INFORMATION GUIDE 2001-2002, pg. 81 (Icelandic Food--Milk
> Products):
>    Still popular today are the centuries-old Icelandic specialties skyr
> and mysa (whey).  Classed as a fresh cheese, skyr is made from skimmed
> milk and is akin to yogurt, and the German "Quark."  Whey is a by-product
> in the making of skyr and is used in the pickling of
> slatur.  Traditionally, mysa was a popular thirst-quencher and still is
> today.  An ideal substitute for white wine when cooking fish.
>    From THE ICELANDIC TRAVELLER (1989), pg. 217, taken from LETTERS ON
> ICELAND (1780) by Uno von Troil:
>    The manner in which they bake it is thus: the flour is mixed with some
> fermented whey (_syra_), and kneaded into dough, of which they make cakes
> one foot in breadth, and three inches thick; these are boiled in water or
> whey, and then dried on a hot stone or an iron plate...
>    Google led me to this "Subglacial Volcanism Definitions" site at:
>    It has the terms STAPI (table mountain), STAPAR, TUYA, and TINDARS.  OED?
>    OED also doesn't have "shield glaciers," or ice-cap glaciers resting
> on a single mountain.  OED does have "shield volcanoes."
>    Table mountains, _stapar_ such as Hrutfell, or tuff were formed in
> eruptions under glacial caps.  The shield volcano, or _dyngja_; Kjalhraun
> was formed by thinly flowing lava soon after the glaciers receded.
>(FYI:  I have a day in Reykjavik tomorrow to visit libraries, I go to the
>Westman Islands on Thursday, and my flight back home is on Friday--ed.)

Beverly Olson Flanigan         Department of Linguistics
Ohio University                     Athens, OH  45701
Ph.: (740) 593-4568              Fax: (740) 593-2967

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