This Proto-Indo-European entry contains reconstructed terms 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 a virtual root *ǵembʰ- +‎ *-os, but the root's precise identity is debated. Most likely it meant “to bite” and is the source of at least Sanskrit जम्भति (jámbhati, to snap at; to snatch with the mouth), जम्भयति (jámbhayati, to crunch, crush), Lithuanian žem̃bti (to cut slantwise, sharpen) and Albanian dhemb (to ache).[1] Furthermore, this appears to be a nasal-infixed form (perhaps *ǵ-né-bʰ-ti ~ *ǵ-m̥-bʰ-énti) of the poorly attested root *ǵebʰ-, possibly found in Proto-Celtic *gobbos (muzzle, snout), Gaulish *gauta (cheek) (inferred only from descendants of Vulgar Latin *gauta, including Occitan gauta/jauta and French joue), Proto-Germanic *kaflaz (jaw, jowl), German Kiefer (jaw), Proto-Slavic *zȍbь (fodder, oats), *zobъ (peck; beak, mouth; goiter), Serbo-Croatian gȕbica (snout, muzzle), Lithuanian žė̃bti (jaw, jowl), and Avestan 𐬰𐬀𐬟𐬀𐬭𐬆(zafarə, mouth). As these are all nouns, the verbal function of the original root is only hypothetical.


*ǵómbʰos m[2]

  1. tooth
    Synonym: *h₃dónts
  2. row of teeth
  3. peg


nominative *ǵómbʰos
genitive *ǵómbʰosyo
singular dual plural
nominative *ǵómbʰos *ǵómbʰoh₁ *ǵómbʰoes
vocative *ǵómbʰe *ǵómbʰoh₁ *ǵómbʰoes
accusative *ǵómbʰom *ǵómbʰoh₁ *ǵómbʰoms
genitive *ǵómbʰosyo *? *ǵómbʰoHom
ablative *ǵómbʰead *? *ǵómbʰomos
dative *ǵómbʰoey *? *ǵómbʰomos
locative *ǵómbʰey, *ǵómbʰoy *? *ǵómbʰoysu
instrumental *ǵómbʰoh₁ *? *ǵómbʰōys


  • Proto-Albanian: *dzamba
  • Proto-Balto-Slavic: *źámbas (see there for further descendants)
  • Proto-Germanic: *kambaz (see there for further descendants)
  • Proto-Hellenic: *gómpʰos (see there for further descendants)
  • Proto-Indo-Iranian: *ȷ́ámbʰas (see there for further descendants)
  • Proto-Tocharian: *këmë

Further readingEdit


  1. ^ Derksen, Rick (2008), “*zęti”, in Etymological Dictionary of the Slavic Inherited Lexicon (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 4), Leiden, Boston: Brill, →ISBN, page 543
  2. ^ Ringe, Donald (2006) From Proto-Indo-European to Proto-Germanic (A Linguistic History of English; 1)‎[1], Oxford: Oxford University Press, →ISBN