> On Thu, 29 Jan 1998, Richard Coates wrote:
> > Further to my previous reply, I am also interested in the
> > following words, and wondered if anyone was prepared to accept
> > the view that they contain examples of the same noun-forming
> > suffix:
> > Ir bunadhas, W dinas and (OW) camas, ScGael caolas
> There's the OI masc. ending -us, mainly used to form abstract
> nouns from adjectives, which Thurneysen ventured might come
> from IE *-es-tu-. Examples he gives (see para. 259 of the
> Grammar) include "bindius" from "bind" (melodious) and
> "inruccus" from "inricc" (worthy). ScGael "caolas" would
> seem to fit that pattern, based on "ca/el" (narrow). The
> ending was also added less often to a noun, as to "comarbae"
> (heir) to form "comarbus" (heirship), which would account
> for "bunadas" [modern "bunu/s"] as a derivative of "bunad"
> (origin, basis).
> Thurneysen give a lot more examples, including "mo/ra/lus"
> (= noun "moral, moral signification") which is interesting
> in that it seems to be a late naturalization of the Latin
> adjective "moralis" by means of the the native ending -us.
> The noun "dorchatu" (darkness) later reduntantly takes on
> the ending -us, giving "dorchatus" (darkness), so -us does
> seem to remain productive fairly late. Many of these words
> in -us, -as are still common in the modern language (ionracas,
> faiti/os, dorchadas) and I imagine that any abstract noun
> ending in -as would be a candidate. Words that spring to
> mind that are not on Thurneysen's list are "ci/ocras" (OI
> ci/ccaras - greed) and "di/ocas". Someone with a good search
> program could perhaps examine the disc-based version of the
> O/ Do/naill dictionary, or one of the on-line dictionaries
> for such words, if that would be helpful.
> Dennis King