Nerthus Project

NerthusV3. Online Lexical Database of Old English

Nerthus Project
Universidad de La Rioja

Javier Martín Arista (Editor)
Laura García Fernández
Miguel Lacalle Palacios
Ana Elvira Ojanguren López
Esaúl Ruiz Narbona

NerthusV3. Online Lexical Database of Old English files 31298 entries, for which the citation form, alternative spellings, category, translation, inflectional morphology and inflectional forms are provided, as can be seen below:

PredicateAlternative spellingCategoryTranslationInflectional morphologyInflectional forms
āblinnanāblynnan, onblinnanverbto cease, stop, leave off, desist, fail; (of things), to come to an endstrong IIIāblann, āblunnon, āblunnen

The database draws on the lexicographical tradition of Old English. More specifically, it is based mainly on Hall’s A Concise Dictionary of Anglo-Saxon (including Supplement) and, secondarily, on Bosworth-Toller’s An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary (including the Supplement by Toller and the Addenda by Campbell), Sweet’s The Student Dictionary of Anglo-Saxon and The Dictionary of Old English. The default spelling of citation forms and alternative spellings corresponds to Hall’s A Concise Dictionary of Anglo-Saxon. Otherwise, the source is acknowledged, as in ābernan, ābyrnan (DOE), ādrīgan, ādrygan (BT), ādrigan (BT), ādrugian (BT), ādruwian (BT), antecrīst (Sweet), etc.

     Some translations and/or alternative spellings follow The Dictionary of Old English (A-G): ādihtnian, āsamnian, āstrēowian, ātrucian, āwǣgnian, beforancuman, beforangecuman, betwēohceorfan, betwuxcuman, dā, dǣdbana, dǣdfruma, dæg, dæghwāmlīce, dēaðbǣrnes, dēma, dēma, dōere, ðōhe, efnegecyrran, efnegeheaðorian, eftādrīfan, eftbecweðan, firenwyrhta, forðhebban, forðwegan, forwyrhta, (ge)andspyrian, (ge)byrgan, (ge)costian, (ge)dēman, (ge)dēman, (ge)gilda, (ge)wyrhta, gewyrhta, handdǣda, lāðgetēona, lǣstend, lēaswyrcend, māndǣda, mānfolm, mānfordǣdla, mānwyrhta, nāhtfremmend, scyllan, tēonsmið, tēonword, unrihtwyrcend, unrihtwyrhta, wamsceaða, welwyrcend, wirgend, wyrcend.

     The information presented in the translation field synthesizes the definitions available from Bosworth-Toller’s An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary and Hall’s A Concise Dictionary of Anglo-Saxon. The various meaning definitions found in these dictionaries have been unified on two principles: polysemy and increasing specificity. Within a meaning definition, commas separate related instantiations of a sense while semicolons distinguish senses, as cāflīce 'quickly, hastily, promptly; vigorously, stoutly; boldly, manfully'. Both inside and across senses, definitions have been organized along two scales, namely hypernym-hyperonym (this is usually the case with nouns and adjectives) and troponymy (mainly in verbs), as the examples below illustrate:

token, sign, mark, indication, symbol, signal, symptom; suggestion; portent, wonder, marvel, miracle, prodigy; prognostic; evidence, demonstration, proof; standard, banner, ensign; credential; monument; sign of the Zodiac.

to do, make, produce, form, construct, fashion, frame; to act, perform, behave, fare; to prepare, arrange; to cause, bring about; to use, manage; to compare, liken; to transform; to conclude.

     The inflectional classes and forms have been extracted from the dictionaries cited above (except The Dictionary of Old English). The comparatives and superlatives of adjectives and adverbs draw on Seelig (1930), while the subclasses of strong verbs follow Krygier (1994).
     The database contains 31298 files, which fall into the following categories:

noun 17666adverb 1468
proper name 496affix 113
adjective 5359hypothetical 65
verb 5833others 298

By initial letter, the files in NerthusV3 can be broken down as is shown below (notice that the grapheme eth <ð / Ð> subsumes the thorn <þ / Þ>):

A 1178H 2224T 1104
Æ 389I 372Ð 790
B 1726L 886U 1925
C 1218M 1206V 1
D 761N 632W 2546
E 1250O 1488Y 282
F 2888P 342
G 2634R 620
(GE) 1555S 3215

To search the database, type in a browser. To launch a query, select Modo Buscar and insert the search criteria into the relevant field.

Query examples

  1. All the files with spelling variants
    alternative spellings*
  2. All the files without spelling variants
    alternative spellings=
  3. All words that contain the letter y
  4. The word ece
  5. The words that begin with the segment gean-
  6. An unspecified character in an inflectional form
    inflectional form==end@de
  7. The inflectional forms that end with the segment -anne
    inflectional form==*anne
  8. Masculine nouns with -es inflection
    inflectional morphologym.
    inflectional form==*es
  9. Strong verbs that mean 'to fly'
    inflectional morphologystrong

To search all the fields simultaneously, insert your query string into the Búsqueda rápida (Quick search) box.

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How to cite

Martín Arista, Javier (ed.), Laura García Fernández, Miguel Lacalle Palacios, Ana Elvira Ojanguren López and Esaúl Ruiz Narbona. 2016. NerthusV3. Online Lexical Database of Old English. Nerthus Project. Universidad de La Rioja. []