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See also: Pingo




Etymology 1Edit

From Greenlandic pingu or Inuktitut pingu (hummock, small hill).


pingo (plural pingoes or pingos)

  1. (geomorphology) A conical mound of earth with an ice core caused by permafrost uplift, particularly if lasting more than a year. [from 1920s]
    • 1963, J[ohn] Ross Mackay, The Mackenzie Delta Area, N.W.T. (Memoir (Geographical Branch, Department of Mines and Technical Surveys, Canada); 8), Ottawa, Ont.: Department of Mines and Technical Surveys, OCLC 937121886, page 74:
      The greatest variation in cover thickness, as determined from collapsed pingos, is in irregularly shaped pingos, or those with asymmetrically located ice-cores.
    • 1973, Roger J. E. Brown; Troy L. Péwé, “Distribution of Permafrost in North America and Its Relationship to the Environment: A Review, 1963–1973: 13–28 July 1973, Yakutsk, U.S.S.R.”, in Permafrost: North American Contribution: Second International Conference, Washington, D.C.: National Academy of Sciences, →ISBN, page 80, column 2:
      Considerable progress has been made on the discovery and mapping of many open system pingos in central Alaska and Yukon Territory [], as well as the discovery of pingo-like mounds in the shallow waters of the Beaufort Sea north of the mouth of the Mackenzie River. The greatest advance in pingo research in the last decade has been a consideration and understanding of theory and rate of pingo growth []
    • 1983, J[ohn] Ross Mackay, “Oxygen Isotope Variations in Permafrost, Tuktoyaktuk Peninsula Area, Northwest Territories”, in Current Research Part B = Recherches en Cours Partie B (Geological Survey Paper), Ottawa, Ont.: Geological Survey of Canada, →ISBN, page 68:
      With the exception of small pingos, most pingo ice cores have several ice types. The bulk of the core can be segregated ice, intrusive ice formed from the freezing of bulk water, or any combination of the twotypes. In addition, dilation-crack ice (tension-crack ice, Brown and Kupsch, 1974) is commonly the main ice type beneath the summit of pingos with craters.
    • 1987, I. B. Campbell; G. G. C. Claridge, Antarctica: Soils, Weathering Processes and Environment (Developments in Soil Science; 16), Amsterdam; New York, N.Y.: Elsevier, →ISBN, page 106:
      Larger scale frost-heave features, such as pingoes, are rare because there is insufficient water available, generally, for the growth of large ice bodies.
See alsoEdit

Etymology 2Edit

A young man in Mumbai, India, using a carrying pole to water fenugreek sprouts. A similar device is known in Sri Lanka as a pingo (etymology 2, sense 1).

Apparently from Sinhalese [Term?] (?),[1] but the word has not yet been identified.


pingo (plural pingoes or pingos)

  1. (Sri Lanka, dated) A flexible pole supported on one shoulder, with a load suspended from each end; a carrying pole or carrying yoke.
    • 1861, J[ames] Emerson Tennent, “Appendix to Chapter III. Narratives of the Natives of Ceylon Relative to Encounters with Rogue Elephants.”, in Sketches of the Natural History of Ceylon with Narratives and Anecdotes Illustrative of the Habits and Instincts of the Mammalia, Birds, Reptiles, Fishes, Insects, &c. Including a Monograph of the Elephant and a Description of the Modes of Capturing and Training It. With Engravings from Original Drawings, London: Longman, Green, Longman, and Roberts, OCLC 311380996, page 138:
      This done, he [an elephant] took up the pingo and moved away from the spot; but at the distance of about a fathom or two, laid it down again, and ripping open one of the bundles, took out of it all the contents, somans [footnote: Woman's robe], cambāyas [footnote: The figured cloth worn by men], handkerchiefs, and several pieces of white cambrick cloth, all which he tore to small pieces, and flung them wildly here and there. He did the same with all the other pingoes.
    • 1887, S. M. Burrows, “A Year’s Work at Polonnáruwa”, in Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, volume X, number 34, Colombo, Ceylon: G. J. A. Skeen, government printer, Ceylon, published 1888, ISSN 0304-2235, OCLC 1695542, page 49:
      The Gańga-vaṇṣa minissu are the washers of the Oliya caste, who are not only a low caste, but come below the Paduvó and Berawáyó, and are the only caste who will carry the pingoes of the smiths.
    • 1859, James Emerson Tennent, “Vegetation.—Trees and Plants.”, in Ceylon: An Account on the Island Physical, Historical, and Topographical with Notices of Its Natural History, Antiquities and Productions, volume I, London: Longman, Green, Longman, and Roberts, OCLC 1003975740, part I (Physical Geography), footnote 2, page 109:
      The following are a only a few of the countless uses of this invaluable tree [the coconut]. [] The stem of the leaf, for fences, for pingoes (or yokes) for carrying burthens on the shoulders, for fishing rods, and innumerable domestic utensils.
    • 1908, Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy, Mediaeval Sinhalese Art: Being a Monograph on Mediaeval Sinhalese Arts and Crafts, Mainly as Surviving in the Eighteenth Century, with an Account of the Structure of Society and the Status of the Craftsmen, Broad Campden, Gloucestershire: Essex House Press, OCLC 757385109, page 206:
      Ceremonial pingoes may also be silver tipped, as in the case of a beautiful example at the Embekke Devale [].
    • 1926, Ali Foad Toulba, “The Beautiful Mountain Railway to Kandy”, in Ceylon: The Land of Eternal Charm, London: Hutchinson & Co. (Publishers) Ltd., Paternoster Row, E.C., OCLC 24653136; reprinted New Delhi; Madras: J. Jetley, Asian Educational Services, 2000, →ISBN, page 145:
      Pingo bearers walk to and fro with their burdens of fruit and vegetables, representing many varieties quite strange to us. The pingo is a long and flat piece of wood from the kittul palm, very tough and pliable. The coolie, having suspended his load to the two ends in baskets or nets, places the stave upon his shoulder at the middle, and is thus enabled by the elastic spring and easy balance of the pingo to carry great weights for a considerable distance. Some pingoes are made from the leaf-stalk of the coconut palm, which is even more pliable than the kittul.
  2. (Sri Lanka, dated) A measure of weight equivalent to that which can be carried using a pingo, perhaps about 55 pounds (25 kilograms) (see the 2013 quotation).
    • 1866, Dandris De Silva Goonaratne, “On Demonology and Witchcraft in Ceylon”, in Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Colombo, Ceylon: F. Fonseka, printer, Fort, Colombo, ISSN 0304-2235, OCLC 1695542, footnote, page 36:
      About an hour or so before a bridegroom accompanied by his friends arrives at the house of the bride, a person, named for the occasion Gamana or messenger, is sent forward with a number of betel leaves equal to the number of people, who accompany the bridegroom. The Gamana is to give these betel leaves to the bride's friends, together with the large pingo of plantains called Gira-mul-tada, which in the Maritime districts is always a sine qua non of the presents, which a Singhalese bridegroom carries to his bride's house.
    • 2007, Karunasena Dias Paranavitana, “The Portuguese Tombos as a Source of Sixteenth- and Seventeenth-century Sri Lankan History”, in Jorge Flores, editor, Re-exploring the Links: History and Constructed Histories between Portugal and Sri Lanka (Maritime Asia; 18), Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, →ISBN, ISSN 1863-6268, page 74:
      He [] paid the lord of the village three pingos worth one larim and four fanões.
    • 2013, Lodewijk Wagenaar, “The Apparition of the Cinnamon Peelers: Dutch Colonial Presence in Eighteenth-century Ceylon and Its Reflection in Non-literary Prose”, in Jeroen Dewulf, Ole Praamstra, and Michiel van Kempen, editors, Shifting the Compass: Pluricontinental Connections in Dutch Colonial and Postcolonial Literature, Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, →ISBN, page 125:
      A certain Wieremunie Joan testified about facts which already had occurred in 1772 when he had delivered four and a half pingo [footnote: A "pingo" is circa fifty-five pound of cinnamon. []] of cinnamon above the fixed duty of five and that the Durea still owed him four and a half rixdollar.




  1. ^ Edward Balfour, editor (1873), “PINGO”, in Cyclopædia of India and of Eastern and Southern Asia, Commercial, Industrial and Scientific: Products of the Mineral, Vegetable and Animal Kingdoms, Useful Arts and Manufactures, volume IV, 2nd edition, Madras: Printed at the Scottish, and Lawrence Presses, OCLC 80069237, page 580, column 1:

    PINGO, Singh[alese], [] an elastic stick loaded at both ends, poised on the shoulder, used in Ceylon for carrying burthens.

Further readingEdit





pingo n

  1. pingo




From Proto-Indo-European *peyḱ- (spot, color), whence Ancient Greek ποικίλος (poikílos, spotted, embroidered), Proto-Slavic *pьstrъ (pestrý in Czech). Pokorny also links to the root: πικρός (pikrós, sharp, keen), Proto-Slavic *pьsati (paint, write) (see Czech psát, Russian пятно́ (pjatnó),писать (pisatʹ) etc.), Proto-Germanic *faihaz (spotted), hence Old English fāh, Scottish faw.



pingō (present infinitive pingere, perfect active pinxī, supine pictum); third conjugation

  1. I decorate or embellish
  2. I paint, tint or colour
    pingere capillum
    to dye one's hair
  3. I portray


   Conjugation of pingo (third conjugation)
indicative singular plural
first second third first second third
active present pingō pingis pingit pingimus pingitis pingunt
imperfect pingēbam pingēbās pingēbat pingēbāmus pingēbātis pingēbant
future pingam pingēs pinget pingēmus pingētis pingent
perfect pinxī pinxistī pinxit pinximus pinxistis pinxērunt, pinxēre
pluperfect pinxeram pinxerās pinxerat pinxerāmus pinxerātis pinxerant
future perfect pinxerō pinxeris pinxerit pinxerimus pinxeritis pinxerint
passive present pingor pingeris, pingere pingitur pingimur pingiminī pinguntur
imperfect pingēbar pingēbāris, pingēbāre pingēbātur pingēbāmur pingēbāminī pingēbantur
future pingar pingēris, pingēre pingētur pingēmur pingēminī pingentur
perfect pictus + present active indicative of sum
pluperfect pictus + imperfect active indicative of sum
future perfect pictus + future active indicative of sum
subjunctive singular plural
first second third first second third
active present pingam pingās pingat pingāmus pingātis pingant
imperfect pingerem pingerēs pingeret pingerēmus pingerētis pingerent
perfect pinxerim pinxerīs pinxerit pinxerīmus pinxerītis pinxerint
pluperfect pinxissem pinxissēs pinxisset pinxissēmus pinxissētis pinxissent
passive present pingar pingāris, pingāre pingātur pingāmur pingāminī pingantur
imperfect pingerer pingerēris, pingerēre pingerētur pingerēmur pingerēminī pingerentur
perfect pictus + present active subjunctive of sum
pluperfect pictus + imperfect active subjunctive of sum
imperative singular plural
first second third first second third
active present pinge pingite
future pingitō pingitō pingitōte pinguntō
passive present pingere pingiminī
future pingitor pingitor pinguntor
non-finite forms active passive
present perfect future present perfect future
infinitives pingere pinxisse pictūrus esse pingī pictus esse pictum īrī
participles pingēns pictūrus pictus pingendus
verbal nouns gerund supine
nominative genitive dative/ablative accusative accusative ablative
pingere pingendī pingendō pingendum pictum pictū

Derived termsEdit





Back-formation from pingar.


pingo m (plural pingos)

  1. a drop
  2. a jot
  3. (Portugal, regional) espresso with milk, similar to a cortado
  4. (Brazil, typography) a small dot that is part of a letter, a tittle

Related termsEdit



  1. first-person singular present indicative of pingar