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Thread: Celtic unit names

  1. #1

    Default Celtic unit names

    Since I've already been asking a bunch of annoying questions about the celts, I might as well get this out of the way. Why are do some of the unit names seem greek? "Arkoi", "Nedes Nesamoi", "Bataroi", and "Gargokladioi" have the greek ending to them. Why is this? And why do some celtic units have this, and some don't?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Celtic unit names

    Gaulish name have often - os in singular and - oi in plural.

    Example: Kingetos (warrior), Kingetoi (warriors).

    It depends of the ending in singular.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Celtic unit names

    In Gaulish as well as in Greek, the most common masculine singular ending is -os with a plural in -oi. In late Gaulish the -oi became -i, perhaps influenced by Latin. It's usually referred to as an o-stem noun ending and (in the nominative case anyway) it looks very similar to a "Second Declension" in Greek.

    Nedes on the other hand, is the plural of *ne(i)s which is a masculine dental stem (earlier proto-Celtic is reconstructed as *nejets, which is where the dental t/d comes from - Gaulish lost it) Nessamoi is an o-stem and is plural, agreeing with it's head noun; it means "nearest" or "next" (its Welsh descendant is nesaf)
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Celtic unit names

    Quote Originally Posted by Elmetiacos View Post
    In late Gaulish the -oi became -i, perhaps influenced by Latin.
    Thank you for a linguistically sound explanation. Do you know of a reason for why we should posit Latin influence instead of regular morphological development?

  5. #5

    Default Re: Celtic unit names

    How much of gaulish has been preserved, and how?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Celtic unit names

    Quote Originally Posted by Septentrionalis View Post
    Thank you for a linguistically sound explanation. Do you know of a reason for why we should posit Latin influence instead of regular morphological development?
    Directly no, which is why I said "possibly". What is true seems to be that languages undergo change faster when they lose their prestige, particularly among the upper classes, so the dominance of Latin could have been an indirect influence in that nobody was interested in speaking "proper Gaulish" after a period of Roman rule.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Celtic unit names

    Quote Originally Posted by Hirtius View Post
    How much of gaulish has been preserved, and how?
    Not very much in the way of actual sentences as in the Larzac Tablet, but lots of personal names on coins, memorials etc. That's obviously not such a big issue when just naming units, buildings and people for EBII.
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    Baseless Assertions on the Celts Since 1996

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