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This Proto-Indo-European 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.



The presence of the laryngeal is confirmed by the –h- in Sanskrit ahám. Instead of the unknown medial laryngeal *-H-, *-h₂- is often reconstructed here, but there is no secure evidence that would prove such assumption.

Three forms can be reconstructed formally, using the comparative method:

  • *éǵ (Hittite ūg, Old Lithuanian , Slavic ja, Avestan azə)
  • *eǵHóm (Sanskrit ahám, Avestan azə̄m, OCS azъ, Homeric Greek ἐγών (egṓn))
  • *eǵóh₂ (Latin egō, Greek ἐγώ (egṓ), Venetic ego)

There seem to be no grounds for assuming an initial *h₁ in PIE (although it is not impossible) or a final *-H in the form *éǵ. The form *éǵ is obviously the most archaic one, with *eǵHóm and *eǵóh₂ being younger, dialectal variants. The sandhi form of *éǵ - *éḱ, with a final devoiced plosive, is attested in Baltic (Old Prussian as, es) and apparently in the Hittite variant [script needed] (ugga).


*éǵ(h₂) or *eǵHóm or *eǵóh₂

  1. I (first-person pronoun)


Declension of *éǵh₂ Singular Dual Plural
Nominative *éǵ(h₂), *eǵHóm, *eǵóh₂ *wé *wéy
Accusative *m̥(m)é ~ me *n̥h₃mé ~ noh₃ *n̥smé ~ nos
Genitive *méme ~ *moy  ?  ? ~ *nos
Dative *méǵʰye ~ moy  ?  ? ~ *nos

Following Andrew L. Sihler (1995):

Declension of *eǵoH Singular Dual Plural
Nominative *eǵoH *we-h₁ *we-i
Accusative **m-mé (> *mé) ~ me *n̥h₁-wé ~ no-h₁ *n̥s-mé ~ no-s
Genitive *mé-me ~ *m-os  ? *n̥s-óm ~ *no-s
Dative *mé-bʰi ~ m-ey, m-oy  ? *n̥s-m-éy ~ *no-s
Ablative **m-m-ét (> *mét)  ? *n̥s-m-ét
  • Oblique pl. *n̥s- possibly continues earlier **m̥s- (same element of sg. oblique stem with pl. s). This n was made common to the whole paradigm, with even enclitic *nos for *mos, but the verb endings *-me(dʰh₂), *-mos(dʰh₂) were not disturbed.
  • Dat. *mégʰi for *mébʰi is attested in Italic and Indic, but not in Iranian, as Avestan maibyā. Also Indic máhyam may be from original -bʰ-, as this sometimes becomes Indic -h- (even more here by dissimilation from initial m-).

Derived termsEdit

  • *memos (from gen. *méme, with loss of second m)?, *mewos (contaminated by *tewos, *sewos)?, *meyos (from dat. *mey)?


  • Albanian:
    • Old Albanian: u (< *udh < *)
      • Albanian: unë (< u + -) (attest. 1462, Skanderbeg's counselor)
  • Armenian:
    • Old Armenian: ես (es)
      • Armenian: ես (es)
  • Anatolian:
  • Balto-Slavic: *eź, *aź
  • Germanic: *ek, *ik, *wīz (see for further descendants)
  • Hellenic
  • Indo-Iranian: *aĵʰHám (see there for further descendants)
  • Italic: *egō, *nōs, *nosteros
    • Faliscan: [script needed] (eqo), [script needed] (eko), [script needed] (eco)
    • Latin: ego, nōs, noster
    • South Picene: [script needed] (ekú)
    • (Possibly) Venetic: [script needed] (ego)
  • Tocharian:

Coordinate termsEdit