-n- adjectival suffix in Latin

Rick Mc Callister rmccalli at sunmuw1.MUW.Edu
Wed Aug 4 14:40:08 UTC 1999

	In Toponimia [or Toponomastica?] della Toscana Meridionale
this morpheme seems to pop up a bit more in Latin/early Romance versions of
name than in the Etruscan form
although this may be a case of lack of evidence
	Another curiousity is that the Romance form is often feminine while
the Latin form ends in -ennius, -enus, etc.


>>I was wondering about the origins of the Latin adjectival
>>suffix -n-us, -n-a, -n-um


>>Paolo Agostini

>[Ed Selleslagh]

>I'm equally intrigued by this. This -n- or -en also pops up in a variety of
>non-IE languages, most notably in Etruscan ( -na, which may be the origin,
>or the enhancing factor in Latin) where it indicates origin or ascendance,
>in Uralic and in Basque (Vasconic?) where it denotes the genitive. (In
>Basque, -en-a means: 'that, him, her of...')  It also occurs in the oldest
>form of genitive in living Germanic ( Ger. der Mensch, des Menschen; Du. de
>mens, des mensen), but that has been attributed to old -n stems - a theory
>that looks a bit odd to me.
>In all those languages it represents some form of 'genitive notion'.
>Intriguing, to say the least.


Rick Mc Callister
Mississippi University for Women
Columbus MS 39701

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