Open main menu

Ancient GreekEdit


Compare Sanskrit परशु (paraśú, axe) and Ossetian фӕрӕт (færæt, axe). This word often considered a Wanderwort, with similarity to Akkadian 𒁄 (pilakku, pilaqqu, wooden handle; spindle, harp), itself from Sumerian 𒁄 (balag, wooden handle; spindle, harp; possibly a split piece of wood or wooden wedge); compare Arabic فَلَقَ(falaqa, to split apart) and πέλεκκον (pélekkon, axe handle). This has led some to suggest that the Proto-Indo-European terms are ultimately borrowed through the Akkadian or a Semitic source. Furnée points to βέλεκκος (bélekkos, kind of pulse), suggesting a Pre-Greek origin.




πέλεκῠς (pélekusm (genitive πελέκεως); third declension

  1. two-edged axe for felling trees
  2. battle axe, executioner's axe


Derived termsEdit


  • Greek: πέλεκυς (pélekys)

Further readingEdit



From Ancient Greek πέλεκυς (pélekus), cognate with Sanskrit परशु (paraśú, axe), which would reflect Proto-Indo-European *peleḱús if reconstructed back to PIE.[1] Beekes suggested a Pre-Greek origin[2]. Compare also German Beil (axe) as well as Hungarian and Turkish balta, both meaning "axe."


πέλεκυς (pélekysm (plural πελέκεις)

  1. battle axe, double-headed axe


Related termsEdit


  1. ^ J. P. Mallory, D. Q. Adams, The Oxford Introduction to Proto-Indo-European (2006, →ISBN): "We find cognates in Grk pélekus, Oss færæt, and Skt paraśú, and the proto-form is often compared with Semitic forms, e.g. Akkadian pilakku which some translate as 'axe' but others translate as 'spindle', which is semantically very distant."
  2. ^ Beekes, Robert S. P. (2010), “πέλεκυς”, in Etymological Dictionary of Greek (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 10), volume II, with the assistance of Lucien van Beek, Leiden, Boston: Brill, pages 1166-1167

Further readingEdit

  • Kaulins, Ancient Signs: The Alphabet and the Origins of Writing