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This Proto-Germanic entry contains reconstructed words and roots. As such, the term(s) in this entry are not directly attested, but are hypothesized to have existed based on comparative evidence.



From Proto-Indo-European *-onom, from *-o- (thematic vowel) + *-nom (verbal noun suffix). The few remaining athematic verbs (which were irregular in Proto-Germanic) accordingly used only *-ną.




  1. The infinitive suffix of strong verbs.

Usage notesEdit

This suffix was not productive in Proto-Germanic.


Strong verbs consist of four principal parts: the present stem (1), the past singular stem (2), the general past stem (3) and the past participle (4). The seven classes of strong verb differ only in how their principal parts are formed.

Derived termsEdit


  • Old English: -an
    • Middle English -en, -e
      • English: -en (obsolete) -e (obsolete)
  • Old Frisian: -a
    • North Frisian: -e
    • Saterland Frisian: -e
    • West Frisian: -e
  • Old Saxon: -an
    • Middle Low German: -en
      • Low German: -en
  • Old Dutch: -an
    • Middle Dutch: -en (merged with all other verbs)
  • Old High German: -an
    • Middle High German: -en
      • German: -en (merged with all other verbs)
  • Old Norse: -a
    • Icelandic: -a
    • Faroese: -a
    • Norwegian Bokmål: -e
    • Norwegian Nynorsk: -a
    • Swedish: -a
    • Danish: -e
  • Gothic: -𐌰𐌽 (-an)