[Spellyans] Easter morning, etc.

nicholas williams njawilliams at gmail.com
Wed Nov 12 16:38:06 GMT 2008

Andrew is almost certainly on to something here. The <du>, <dew>, <de>  
is unlikely to derive from hethyv 'today' itself, given that hethyv,  
heddiw invariably has a lenited /D/. But hethyv, heddiw must be a  
derivative of the word for 'day'. This was something like
*dijo- with zero-grade of the root seen in Latin dies. This is a  
derivative of the IE *dyews 'sky god' and appears in Greek as Zeus. It
also in a reduced form appears in Latin Iupiter, gen. Iouis.
Notice also that Irish has Dé Luain 'Monday', De Máirt 'Tuesday', etc.  
and also inniu 'today' < indiu, which latter is clearly a derivative  
of the
word for 'day'.
I take it that Brythonic hethyw, heddiw derives from the dative/ 
locative of a thematised variant of the root seen in dies, Iupiter and  
It must be remembered that the intervocalic /D/ in Welsh and Cornish  
is a reflex of an earlier -j- i.e. *dijo- or whatever. The initial  
he- is the same as the prefix in Welsh eleni 'this year', Bret.  
hevlene 'id', from a demonstrative *so- or the like.
If heddiw/hethyw is from a preform *sodijo-, the du/dew/de prefix  
would be *dijo- but in low stress. This might (and here I am really  
chancing my arm)
have given *dej- > *dê > *dyw, written du, dew.
The forms in de- derive from weaker variant where <e> may represent  
schwa. Or it may have been attracted to deth 'day'.
There is nothing inherently odd in assuming that du/de contains a  
different case from deth/dyth/dith; after all pen has a dative
pyn in erbyn.


On 12 Nov 2008, at 16:01, <ajtrim at msn.com> <ajtrim at msn.com> wrote:

> I'll leave it for you learned folks to find evidence or disprove:

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