I can't seem to find and Indo European root for this word. I'm not even sure if it has indo european origins.

  • 1
    I was under the impression that "eu-" is a prefix, approximately "true, good" eukaryote, oi-punk, euthanize, euphoric, heuristic; Not so in Ger. Euter, Eule; Heuropa is still uncertain, as divine names are (I read a word due to which I assumed it meant haven, port of origin but didn't find it noteworthy. Hmmm, *óynos (“single, one”). Eu-kar-yota? Anyway, "ἐΰς" (eǘs, “true”) exists, as in Eukaryota, but it's likewise uncertain.
    – vectory
    Dec 11, 2018 at 2:00
  • 1
    There should be a penalty for downvoting a question without commenting. If someone thinks a question is misplaced or bad, he/she should give a reason or suggest an improvement. I am really tired repeating this in every community site.
    – Midas
    Dec 11, 2018 at 5:48
  • 1
    @vectory eu does mean good, but this word starts heu (rough breathing) so it would probably have a different etymology
    – b a
    Dec 11, 2018 at 10:45
  • 1
    @midas No, there shouldn't. Anonymous voting keeps the stackexchange sites healthy, and there are measures against abusive voting (in either direction, up or down). Not everyone is ready to enter a discussion of their downvote motives. Dec 11, 2018 at 10:45
  • @jknappen I wouldn't call that healthy. If you want to increase the quality of feedback and make questions/answers better you should be ready to give your five cents. A downvote without a feedback is nothing worth. In cases of new members, such attitude scares/frustrates them away. This has been a problem in other communities, but I guess this is not the place to discuss this.
    – Midas
    Dec 11, 2018 at 19:43

2 Answers 2


It's hard to say. According to Beekes Etymological dictionary:

Given the perfective meaning of εὑρίσκω, the aorist εὗρον is probably old. An old perfect seen in εὕρη-κα probably existed next to it. After this, εὑρήσω arose, and the latest member of the paradigm (beside εὑρεθῆναι) was the present εὑρίσκω (quantity of the ι unknown). The aorist εὗρον may be a thematic root formation standing for the augmented ind. *ἔ-ϝρ-ον; on this form, see Vara Emerita 61 (1993): 177-9. The aspiration is perhaps secondary after ἑλεῖν etc. Alternatively, was it a reduplicated aorist *u̯e-u̯r-e/o- from *ue-urh1-e/o-, with dissimilatory loss of the anlauting ϝ- and secondary aspiration, in which case, according to Beckwith Glotta 72 (1994): 24-30, the root-final laryngeal was lost in a reduplicated formation? A reduplicated formation is also found in the OIr. preterite -fúar 'I found' < IE *ue-ur- (pres. fo-gabim ); the pass. -frīth 'inventum est' agrees with *ϝρη- in -ϝέ-ϝρη-κα (> εὕρηκα) as IE *urh1-to-. IE *ureh1-t- has also been supposed in OCS ob-rětъ 'I found'. A full grade * uer- is seen in Arm. gerem (with secondary aorist gerec'i ) 'take prisoner'. Taillardat RPh. 34 (1960): 232-235 assumes *suer-, with *sesure > εὗρε.

Appart from that, he puts a question mark on the origin of the word. In other words, the present IE suggestions are not conclusive.


The authors of this website consider that it comes from the reconstructed root: *u̯er

source: https://lrc.la.utexas.edu/lex/master/2165

  • Is that the inverted-breve laryngeal notation again, now on u, What's that from?!?
    – vectory
    Dec 11, 2018 at 1:50
  • Not really, it stands for *w. Depending on rule phonotactics, it could be realized [u] or [w].
    – amegnunsen
    Dec 11, 2018 at 9:27

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