Learned borrowing from Old English eoten. Doublet of ettin.


eoten (plural eotens)

  1. A giant from Old English literature and mythology.
    • 1834, “The National Fairy Mythology of England”, in Fraser's Magazine for Town and Country, volume 10, page 53:
      The chief exploit of the hero, Beowulf the Great, is the destruction of the two monsters Grendel and his mother; both like most of the evil beings in the old times, dwellers in the fens and the waters; and both, moreover, as some Christian bard has taken care to inform us, of "Cain's kin," as were also the eotens, and the elves, and the orcs (eótenas, and ylfe, and orcneas).
    • 1922, Eleanour Sinclair Rohde, The Old English Herbals, page 3:
      In these manuscripts we are again in an atmosphere of eotens and trolls, there are traces of even older terrors, when the first Teuton settlers in Europe struggled with the aborigines who lived in caves[.]

Old EnglishEdit


From Proto-West Germanic *etun, cognate with Old Norse jǫtunn (Swedish jätte, Danish jætte). Related to eat, see Proto-Germanic *etunaz.



eoten m

  1. giant, monster



Derived termsEdit