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Subject: Cairbre, corb, Cormac
From: David Stifter <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Scholars and students of Old Irish <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 24 Sep 2003 09:15:23 +0200
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Christopher wrote:

> I wonder if Corb can come from PIE *kor-wo- "growing" adolescent (a
> derivative of *ker- "to grow") which has given us Greek kore ("girl"),
> kouros/koros ("boy, son"), and Dioskouroi.

” CorrŠin/Maguire give the name as Corbb, i.e. with unlenited b which would exclude a derivation from *korwo-. I 
wonder if there are any rhyming examples to support this.

It has been suggested (e.g. in LEIA) that corbaid "to defile" be a loan from Latin corrumpere. That's fine from the 
phonological point of view, but in that case the noun/adjective corb, if it is related to corbaid at all, must be a back-
formation, an analogically formed "quasi-derivational base" for the verb corbaid. I don't know of any other such case.

Since corb is frequent in names from an early time on (there are several examples among the Ogam inscriptions), it is 
hardly a Latin loan.

BTW, I just see that the name CORBBIMAQQI, obviously the preform of Cormac, is attested on Ogam. Therefore I 
have to draw back the reservations about its etymology I expressed the other day.

David

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