[DWJ] Re: Gotten, was Re: DWJ on Bujold

Colin Fine colin at kindness.demon.co.uk
Mon May 19 13:41:36 EDT 2008

HSchinske at aol.com wrote:
> In a message dated 5/19/2008 9:01:27 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, Joe 
> _oddenda at gmail.com_ (mailto:oddenda at gmail.com)  writes:
> Can  someone help me out with "ybounden"? I think I've seen it written  
> "ibounden" too, in Britten's Ceremony of Carols. What does the y add to  
> the meaning?
> I think it's similar to the "ge-" prefix on past participles in German --  
> Ich habe mein Mobiltelefon gefunden (I've found my cell phone). Mein gefundenes  
> Mobiltelefon ist kaputt (My cell phone that was found is broken). Apologies 
> if  this is rotten German, but it gives the general idea.
> Helen Schinske
That's right. The OED says:
[y-] "represents OE. /{asg}e-/, earlier (and Northumb.) /{asg}i-/, = 
OFris. /gi-/, /ge-/, /ie-/, /e-/, /a-/, OS. /gi-/, /ge-/, /i-/, MLG., 
MDu. /ge-/, /ghe-/, locally /i-/, /y-/, /e-/, (LG., Du. /ge-/), OHG. 
/ga-/, /ka-/, /gi-/, /ki-/, /ge-/, (MHG., G. /ge-/, dial. /je-/, also 
/gi-/, /ga-/), Goth. /ga-/: {em}OTeut. /*ga-/.


"The general facts of the history and survival of OE. /{asg}e-/, of 
which some details are given below, are:

{em}In positions where it was still recognizable as a prefix, it had 
left few traces in northern English by 1200; its disappearance in the 
north was assisted by the absence of the prefix in ON. Substantival, 
adjectival, and verbal forms (other than pa. pples.) continued, not 
later than the end of the 14th century, only in southern and 
west-midland dialects. The pa. pple. was regularly formed with the 
prefix in southern ME. till about the middle of the 15th century, and 
its use in the form /a-/ survives in south-western dialects to the 
present day. Pa. pples. so formed were a prominent feature of the 
archaistic language of Spenser and his imitators, and a few of them, the 
most notable of which is YCLEPT 
persist as conventional archaisms of poetry."

And I thought the German for 'mobile' was 'Handy'?


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