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Type: lexical
Meaning: 'head, top'
Language: Celtic
Phonemic analysis: /penn/-
Attestation: penini, poenino, poininos, poinunei


Lexically in OIr. cenn, OW penn, OBret. penn, OCorn. pen gl. capud, and in Gaulish in RIG L-136 pennon, all 'head', < PC *kennom, which does not have a PIE etymology. Also in glosses pennum gl. acutum, pen(n)is gl. caput, and continued in French arpent 'yoke' < arepennis (in Columella, De re rustica 5.1.6) and Dauphin. talapent 'gable'). OIr. conn 'chief' may also belong here. The word is attested as an onomastic element in personal names, e.g. Ogam cunacenni (gen.), CIL V 4216 cunopennus (Brescia; lit. 'dog-head'), RIG M-221 πεννοουινδος, M-220 pennili (gen.), M-262 maupennos, and various names in penn-, in toponyms ('head' → 'top, summit'), e.g. pennelocos near Lake Geneva, pennocrucium (It.Ant.) > Penkridge, apenninus (Sims-Williams 2006: 98), and in the theonym *penninos. See LEIA: C-66, DLG: 249, 53, Matasović 2009: 177.

Corinna Salomon


CIL Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum. (17 volumes, various supplements)
DLG Xavier Delamarre, Dictionnaire de la langue gauloise. Une approche linguistique du vieux-celtique continental, 2nd, revised edition, Paris: Errance 2003.