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Ancient GreekEdit

Alternative formsEdit


From earlier *θύγατηρ (*thúgatēr) (compare with the Homeric accusative form θύγατρα (thúgatra) created to avoid the four syllables of θυγατέρα (thugatéra) and fit the hexameter) via Limitation Law which required the accent to be placed on the last two syllables, due to the long final syllable. Further via Proto-Hellenic *tʰugatēr (compare Mycenaean Greek 𐀶𐀏𐀳 (tu-ka-te)), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰugh₂tḗr. Cognate with Sanskrit दुहितृ (dúhitṛ), Gothic 𐌳𐌰𐌿𐌷𐍄𐌰𐍂 (dauhtar), Old Church Slavonic дъщи (dŭšti), and Old English dohtor (English daughter).


  • (5th BCE Attic) IPA(key): /tʰy.ɡá.tɛːr/
  • (1st CE Egyptian) IPA(key): /tʰyˈɡa.ter/
  • (4th CE Koine) IPA(key): /θyˈɣa.tir/
  • (10th CE Byzantine) IPA(key): /θyˈɣa.tir/
  • (15th CE Constantinopolitan) IPA(key): /θiˈɣa.tir/
  • NounEdit

    θυγάτηρ (thugátērf (genitive θῠγᾰτέρος or θῠγᾰτρός); third declension

    1. daughter
    2. female slave, maid-servant

    Usage notesEdit

    The forms with three or more syllables do not fit the meter of Homer and other Epic poets, so in these forms the (u) of the stem is usually lengthened to (ū). In the following example, the σ (s) of the dative plural ending has also been doubled to σσ (ss) to make it fit the meter.

    • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 15.197–198
      θῡγατέρεσσιν γάρ τε καὶ υἱάσι βέλτερον εἴη
      ἐκπάγλοις ἐπέεσσιν ἐνισσέμεν οὓς τέκεν αὐτός
      thūgatéressin gár te kaì huiási bélteron eíē
      ekpáglois epéessin enissémen hoùs téken autós
      since it would be better for him to use his violent words to attack the daughters and sons whom he himself beget

    In the following example, the accusative singular ending -ᾰ (-a) appears to be lengthened to (ā), because its syllable is heavy (long), but the actual reason that the syllable is heavy is because in Homer's time the possessive pronoun ἥν (hḗn) began with a doubled voiceless /ʍʍ/ that was changed to an initial (rough breathing) in the Attic version of the text.

    • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 13.374–376
      Ὀθρυονεῦ περὶ δή σε βροτῶν αἰνίζομ' ἁπάντων
      εἰ ἐτεὸν δὴ πάντα τελευτήσεις ὅσ' ὑπέστης
      Δαρδανίδῃ Πριάμῳ· ὃ δ' ὑπέσχετο θῡγατέρᾱ ἥν [= *-ᾰ ῾ϝϝήν].
      Othruoneû perì dḗ se brotôn ainízom' hapántōn
      ei eteòn dḕ pánta teleutḗseis hós' hupéstēs
      Dardanídēi Priámōi; hò d' hupéskheto thūgatérā hḗn [= *-a ῾wwḗn].
      Othryoneus, I congratulate you beyond all mortals
      if you will truly bring to pass what you promised
      to Priam son of Dardanus: he has promised [you] his daughter.


    Derived termsEdit


    Further readingEdit