bird

matakoweg

Senior Member
When I search the word for bird via google Translate in the different Slavic languages I see the following:
Polish ptak
Check pták
Ukrain птах

Russian птица
Bulgarian птица
Serbian птицe

It seems to me that the Russian Bulgarian and Serbian words are derived from a more basic word "ptak". Is it maybe an old form of diminutive?
 
  • Panceltic

    Senior Member
    Slovenščina
    Slovenian has both ptica and ptič.

    And yes, Proto-Slavic *pъt- is from PIE *peth₂- and thus cognate with πτερόν, feather etc. (source: Wiktionary)
     
    The only clear matches are found in Baltic: Lithuanian putė “chicken, bird” and Latvian putns “bird”, also Lithuanian putytis “young bird; young animal”. The root in Slavic is etymologically *put->pъt- as well. Whether it has cognates outside Balto-Slavic, is speculative: the proposed variants aren't semantically (*pehₐu-: not all birds are small) or phonetically (*pethₐ-: hard to get the root u) evident.

    P. S. The simple word is attested in the Old East Slavic pъta “bird”. An n-suffix as in Latvian in the Old Church Slavonic and Old East Slavic word pъtenьcь “chick, nestling” (in Old Church Slavonic also pъtěnьcь, with ě), *Pъtę with the same meaning is continued in the Ukrainian потя.
     
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    In Slovenian, "puta" means "hen" (but more standard word for hen is "kokoš").
    Baltic has the word pautas (Lithuanian), pauts (Latvian), pawtte (plural, Prussian) “egg”, which looks suspiciously similar (the Slovene u in inherited words when not word-final can only come from proto-Slavic *au̯). In principle, all can represent an o-grade of the same root put-, compare mušica<*mau̯xīkā and mešica<mъšica<*muxīkā for *mux-~mau̯x- “fly”.
     

    Kazimir Lenz

    New Member
    Bulgarian
    Baltic has the word pautas (Lithuanian), pauts (Latvian), pawtte (plural, Prussian) “egg”, which looks suspiciously similar (the Slovene u in inherited words when not word-final can only come from proto-Slavic *au̯). In principle, all can represent an o-grade of the same root put-, compare mušica<*mau̯xīkā and mešica<mъšica<*muxīkā for *mux-~mau̯x- “fly”.

    There is also Bulgarian :warning:putka 'vulva'; another derivation of *puta, which also seems to allude to the older meaning of "hen", is found in plašiputarnik 'a cowardly, unmanly man; one who talks aggressively, but is otherwise timorous'.
     

    Милан

    Senior Member
    Serbian (Србија)
    Птицa
    When I search the word for bird via google Translate in the different Slavic languages I see the following:
    Polish ptak
    Check pták
    Ukrain птах
    Belarusian птушка

    Russian птица
    Bulgarian птица
    Serbian птицА

    It seems to me that the Russian Bulgarian and Serbian words are derived from a more basic word "ptak". Is it maybe an old form of diminutive?

    Птице is the plural form.
     

    nimak

    Senior Member
    Macedonian
    In Bulgarian путка is an alternative form for патка, патица. In Macedonian it has a vulgar meaning only.

    Also, compare the words for "duck" in: Macedonian патка (patka), пајка (pajka); Serbo-Croatian патка/patka f., патак/patak m.; (Ottoman) Turkish patka; Bulgarian патица (patica), патка (patka); Spanish pata; Old Armenian բադ (bad); Persian bat; Arabic baṭṭ; Hindi battakh etc.
     
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    There is also the word for “partridge” that is (in non-standard orthographies for not to proliferate variants) kuropatka in Russian, Belarusian and Kashubian, kuropatva in Ukrainian and Polish — koroptev in Czech, kurotva in Upper Sorbian — and *kuropъka>kurʲipka in Ukrainian and kurapka (and East Slavic loan) in Lithiuanian, that is -pat-, *-pъt- and either -p- or perhaps an unusual reduction of *-pъt-.

    Этимологический словарь славянских языков has the lemma *pata/*patъ, but suggests nothing convincing: it remains an obscure root so far.
     

    nimak

    Senior Member
    Macedonian
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    Kazimir Lenz

    New Member
    Bulgarian
    Wiktionary says that:

    The term putka definitely meant "fowl, hen" once, but I think there is no actual attestation of the word in this meaning either in living dialects or older written documents. The whole entry in wiktionary is strange - the cited Proto-Slavic forms are masculine o- or u-stem nouns, for which there is no basis in any attested Slavic idioms (to my knowledge at least); šutka is a dialectal word for grebe, not duck or hen (it's used as an euphemism for putka, true); vutka looks like it might be a Torlakian reflex of *ǫtŭka 'duck' (it shouldn't have prothetic v- in that case though), an entirely different word... I suspect that entry is "original research".
     
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    nimak

    Senior Member
    Macedonian
    Actually, in Spanish the general term for duck is pato not pata . ;)
    I know. I purposely listed only the feminine form pata to keep the list and the whole post shorter and clearer. I even didn't add the masculine forms in Macedonian for the same reason.
     

    DarkChild

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    Wiktionary says that:
    This is very questionable. Путка does not mean duck anywhere. It may have the same origin but that's way back in time. It's never meant duck in literature or anything for it to be called an "obsolete" term for duck.

    Now патка (duck) has taken on the meaning of penis in recent years, possibly due to the similarity in sound to путка.
     
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