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Thread poster: watwinc

German to English
Aug 31, 2009

I'd like to track the evolution of "weis/weiß" - does anyone know a good online resource or printed reference work?

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2009-09-01 13:15 GMT]

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Daniel Šebesta  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 01:05
Member (2007)
English to Czech
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Etymological dictionary Sep 1, 2009

I would use an etymological dictionary, such as the following:

Duden. Das Herkunftswörterbuch. Etymologie der deutschen Sprache. ISBN: 978-3-411-04074-2.

You might find some interesting, yet less rigorously verified and perhaps less reader-friendly information in the Brothers Grimm's "Das Deutsche Wörterbuch" at the following site:




[Edited at 2009-09-01 21:52 GMT]

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Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:05
German to English
Kluge Sep 1, 2009

Try Kluge, "Etymologisches Wörterbuch." I have an older version, so the ISBN number won't help.

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German to English
Gebrüder Grimm Sep 1, 2009

An interesting reference - there's a long entry under "Weisheit", but nothing at all for "Weißheit" in the sense of "whiteness". I'll check the Duden (at the library) to see if this is a late formation, which would explain its absence in Grimm.

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Johanna Timm, PhD  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:05
Member (2002)
English to German
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Hinweis Sep 1, 2009

Konkret zu deiner Frage: es handelt sich um zwei verschiedene Wurzeln:

1. wissen < ahd wiszan: sehen machen, wissen machen < lat. videre= sehen; (cf. weiss= hell)
2. weisen < ahd. wisan gehen, fűhren (beweisen/ verweisen); cf. der Weisel (Bienenkönigin)

Nachzulesen im „Kurzen Deutschen Wörterbuch für Etymologie: Synonymik und Orthographie“ von Friedrich Schmitthenner (hrg. 1834!): http://shortify.com/9249

Weise Grüße

[Edited at 2009-09-01 18:14 GMT]

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German to English
Im Streit der Weisen ... Sep 1, 2009

Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology
white, OHG (h)wiz
wise, OHG wis

Grimm is interesting on the move from wistum to wisheit!

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