Word Family - Bee

March theme: Bees


La bohème, bee, antisphexish

Full Text

  • Proto-Indo-European *bʰewh₂- to hit, to strike
    • Proto-Indo-European *bʰewh₂ti primary verb
      • Proto-Albanian *bajā
        • Albanian bahe sling
      • Balto-Slavic
        • Lithuanian bausti to chastise, to punish
      • Celtic
        • Old Irish fo-botha threaten lit. "under-*beat"
      • Italic
        • Latin *fūtō
          • Latin confūtō
            • Western Romance
              • French
                • English confute
          • Latin refūtō I restrain, I repress, I refute
            • Western Romance
              • French réfuter to refute
                • English refute
              • Spanish refutar to refute
          • Latin fūstis cudgel, staff, club
            • Eastern Romance
              • Romanian fuște lance
            • Western Romance
              • French fût tree trunk, keg, barrel
              • Italian fusto trunk, hunk (attractively muscled), stem, keg
              • Spanish fuste wood, timber, shaft, importance
              • Spanish fusta whip, crop
            • Old Irish súist
              • Irish súiste flail
            • Latin *fūsticellus diminutive of fūstis
              • Eastern Romance
                • Romanian fuscel rod, pole, stairstep
    • Proto-Indo-European *bʰǝdʰh₂newti? transitive imperfective?
      • Germanic *bautaną to strike, to beat, to push
        • East Germanic
          • Gothic 𐌱𐌰𐌿𐍄𐌰𐌽 bautan
        • North Germanic
          • Old Norse bauta
            • Icelandic bauta
        • West Germanic
          • Old English bēatan to beat, to hit, to strike
            • English beat
          • Frankish *bautan
            • Dutch boten to hit, to thresh
            • Old French
              • French bouter to push, to pin, to nail
              • English butt
              • Spanish botar to bounce, to throw
          • Old High German pōzan
            • German boßen bossen to thrash
    • Proto-Indo-European *bʰeyh₂- strike, attack [1]
      • Proto-Indo-European *bʰih₂-ti
        • Balto-Slavic *bī́ˀtei to beat
          • Slavic *bìti to beat
            • East Slavic
              • Russian бить bitʹ to beat, to clap, to chime
            • South Slavic
              • Serbo-Croatian би̏ти bȉti to beat, to hit, to strike [2]
            • West Slavic
              • Polish bić to beat, to mint, to forge, to ring
      • Proto-Indo-European *bʰinéh₂-ti
        • Celtic *binati to strike, to hit
          • Brythonic *bɨnad to strike, to hit
            • Brythonic *kummɨnad to cut down, to fell
              • Welsh cymynaf to fell, to hew
          • Old Irish benaid to strike, to hit
            • Irish bain to extract, to release, to agitate, to win
            • Old Irish frisben to heal lit. "against strike"
      • Proto-Indo-European *bʰoyh₂ós
        • Balto-Slavic
          • Slavic *bȏjь battle, fight
            • East Slavic
              • Russian бой boj fight, struggle, battle, striking (of a clock) [3]
            • South Slavic
              • Serbo-Croatian бо̑ј bȏj battle
            • West Slavic
              • Polish bój fight, combat, fray
        • Celtic
          • Gaulish *Boia? tribe name, the Boii [4]
            • Latin Boii
            • Germanic *Boiohaimaz land of the Boii "Boii-home" [4]
              • Late Latin Boiohaemum
                • French Bohême Bohemia
                  • English Bohemia
                  • French bohème
                    • English bohemian
                    • German Bohème bohemian society
                    • Italian La bohème
                      • English La bohème
                • German Böhmen Bohemia
                  • Yiddish פיהם Pihm Bohemia
              • Germanic *Boiowarjaz settlers of Boii(home) [4]
                • Late Latin Bojuvarii
                  • English Bavaria
                  • German Bayern Bavaria
                    • Yiddish בײַערן bayern Bavaria
            • Celtic *Boiabona? Boii-Settlement (place name) [4]
              • Latin Bonōnia
                • Western Romance
                  • Italian Bologna [4]
                    • English baloney
                  • French Boulogne [4]
        • Italic
          • Venetic 𐌘𐌏𐌉𐌉𐌉𐌏(𐌔) Boiiios The Boii? A family name? [5]
      • Proto-Indo-European *bʰih₂tweh
        • Balto-Slavic
          • Slavic *bìtva battle, fight
            • East Slavic
              • Russian би́тва bítva battle, fight
            • South Slavic
              • Serbo-Croatian битка bitka battle
            • West Slavic
              • Polish bitwa battle
      • Proto-Indo-European *bʰikwó- striker, stinger, bee
        • Balto-Slavic
          • Lithuanian bitė bee
          • Slavic *bьčelà bee
            • East Slavic
              • Russian пчела́ pčelá bee
            • South Slavic
              • Serbo-Croatian пчѐла pčèla bee
            • West Slavic
              • Polish pszczoła honey bee
        • Celtic *bekos
          • Brythonic
            • Middle Welsh byg-egyr drone lit. "bee-fly"
            • Welsh bydaf beehive
          • Old Irish bech bee
            • Irish beach bee
              • Irish beachlann beehive
        • Germanic *bijō
          • North Germanic
            • Old Norse bee
              • Danish
              • Icelandic bee (archaic) [2]
                • Icelandic býfluga
          • West Germanic
            • Old English bēo bee [2]
              • English bee [2]
              • Scots bee bee, caprice, fanciful idea
              • Old English Bēoƿulf Beowulf [6]
                • English Beowulf
          • Germanic *biniz
            • West Germanic
              • Old High German bini
                • German Biene bee
                • Yiddish בין bin bee
        • Hellenic
          • Ancient Greek σφήξ sphḗx wasp
            • Translingual Sphex genus of digger wasps
              • English sphexish
                • English antisphexish
        • Italic
          • Latin fūcus male bee, drone
            • Western Romance
              • Italian fuco male bee, drone


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Collected English words

confute, refute, beat, butt, Bohemia, bohemian, La bohème, Bavaria, baloney, bee, Beowulf, Sphex, sphexish, antisphexish


  1. ^

    *bʰeyh₂-: "strike, attack" looks like a Late Northwestern IE dialectic form of *bʰewh₂-. It appears primarily in *bʰikwó: "bee", whose reflexes, with the exception of the uncertain Greek σφήξ, are distributed in a perfect match for the Late Northwestern group: Baltic, Celtic, Germanic, Italic, Slavic.

  2. ^

    "bee" (insect) and "be" (copula) are homonyms in several IE languages, such as English, Icelandic, and Croatian. Because they started out so similarly in PIE *bʰewh₂-: "to strike" and *bʰwH-: "to be".

  3. ^

    Russian бой boj is sometimes seen in English language sources in the phrase blizhnii boi/blizny boy: "close combat", e.g. the tactics of close combat employed by the Red Army in World War 2, or the 2007 movie "Blizhniy Boy: The Ultimate Fighter".

  4. ^

    The Gaulish tribe name Boii is of uncertain origin, but is likely either from this root and means "battle people", or unrelated and means "cattle people". If "cattle people", presumably related to the speculatively reconstructed Proto-Celtic social class terms: *bouios/*ambouios: "cattle-owners"/"not cattle owners".

    Germanic *Boiohaimaz is the land ("home") of the Boii. Germanic *Boiowarjaz means "settlers of Boii (home)", the name adopted by the Germanic Marcomanni who settled in Boiohaimaz after the majority of the Boii migrated to northern Italy and southern France (one of the immediate predecessors of Ceasar's Gaulish Campaigns)

    In Italty Bononia (modern Bologna) was one of their major settlements, presumably from Celtic *Boi-bona: "Boii Settlement". Compare *Windo-bona: "white fort/settlement", modern Vienna. There are some places in France called Boulogne, which likely have the same etymology, but are not in the part of France settled by the Boii, may have been named by Roman settlers from the other Bononia.

  5. ^

    Venetic 𐌘𐌏𐌉𐌉𐌉𐌏(𐌔) Boiiios is interpreted as a family name in the name "Lemetor Boios". Alternatively, could be an ethnic designator borrowed from the Celtic, thus "Lemetor the Boii". (Venetic inscription in Old Italic script at Este in northern Italy)

  6. ^

    Beowulf, literally "bee-wolf", is a kenning for a bear. There is some good evidence that Beowulf is a reflex of a Germanic archetype sometimes called "The Bear's Son". The archetype is also represented by Bödvar Bjarki ("Bodvar Little-Bear") who has some of the same adventures as Beowulf, but also has the ability to either turn into a bear or to project his spirit in the form of a bear.