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saxum (a stone, rock)


De Vaan rejects any connections with Proto-Indo-European *sek- (to cut), leaving it as unknown. This is due to the presence of the vowel a in the Latin word, reasoning that to obtain that vowel in that position, a laryngeal must be posited. The root *sek- does not have a laryngeal, ruling out a Proto-Indo-European derivation.[1]


  • (Classical) IPA(key): /ˈsak.sum/, [ˈsak.sũ]
  • (file)


saxum n (genitive saxī); second declension

  1. stone, rock (a large, rough fragment of rock)
    • Aaron Stone, season 1 episode 16:
      Responsum est sub saxo.
      The answer is under the rock.
  2. (by extension) wall of stone


Second declension.

Case Singular Plural
Nominative saxum saxa
Genitive saxī saxōrum
Dative saxō saxīs
Accusative saxum saxa
Ablative saxō saxīs
Vocative saxum saxa


Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit



  • saxum in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • saxum in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • saxum in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition, 1883–1887)
  • saxum in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • steep rocks: saxa praerupta
    • the rocks re-echo: saxa voci respondent or resonant
    • to pave a road: viam sternere (silice, saxo)
    • to throw some one down the Tarpeian rock: deicere aliquem de saxo Tarpeio
  • saxum in Samuel Ball Platner (1929), Thomas Ashby, editor, A Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome, London: Oxford University Press
  1. ^ De Vaan, Michiel (2008), “saxum”, in Etymological Dictionary of Latin and the other Italic Languages (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 7), Leiden, Boston: Brill, page 541