dhole (wild dog in India): antedatings (?) and etymology(?)

Douglas G. Wilson douglas at NB.NET
Wed Dec 6 17:31:54 UTC 2006

>dhole OED 1827 "Origin unknown"


>The names here brought into juxta-position, show how much confusion
>there exists
>in designating the animals already described and the present species among the
>natives of India; a confusion they extend to hyaenas and wolves. Qyo, Quihoe,
>and Qao appear to signify imitations of the animal's voice when hunting; Dhole
>a Praerit name; [....]

MW3 derives "dhole" ('perhaps') from 'Kanarese' "tola" [diacritics omitted]
= "wolf". I suppose 'Kanarese' means Kannada here. There is a "tola" =
"wolf" in the Kannada dictionary and the general geographical area seems right.

I don't recognize "Praerit" but maybe it's "Prakrit", which in this context
might mean simply "Indian vernacular".

-- Doug Wilson

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