Etymology of the Sanskrit word from which orange is derived

dihydrogen monoxide

Senior Member
Slovene, Serbo-Croat
English Orange ultimately comes from Sanskrit word, I think its narang so I'd like to the origin of the Sanskrit word and its PIE reconstruction, if it's a PIE word?
 
  • wonderment

    Senior Member
    English
    English Orange ultimately comes from Sanskrit word, I think its narang so I'd like to the origin of the Sanskrit word and its PIE reconstruction, if it's a PIE word?

    From the Online Etymology Dictionary:

    orange
    c.1300, from O.Fr. orenge (12c.), from M.L. pomum de orenge, from It. arancia, originally narancia (Venetian naranza), alt. of Arabic naranj, from Pers. narang, from Skt. naranga-s "orange tree," of uncertain origin. Loss of initial n- probably due to confusion with definite article (e.g. une narange, una narancia), but perhaps infl. by Fr. or "gold." The tree's original range probably was northern India. The Persian orange, grown widely in southern Europe after its introduction in Italy 11c., was bitter; sweet oranges were brought to Europe 15c. from India by Portuguese traders and quickly displaced the bitter variety, but only Mod.Gk. still seems to distinguish the bitter (nerantzi) from the sweet (portokali "Portuguese") orange.
     

    Lugubert

    Senior Member
    Hobson_Jobson, while agreeing that "no satisfactory etymological explanation has been given", has this interesting quote:
    Yule & Burnell said:
    Sir W. Jones, in his article on the Spikenard of the Ancients, quotes from Dr. Anderson of Madras, "a very curious philogical remark, that in the Tamul dictionary, most words beginning with nar have some relation to fragrance; as narukeradu, to yield an odour; nártum pillei, lemon-grass; nártei, citron;
     

    wonderment

    Senior Member
    English
    Hobson_Jobson, while agreeing that "no satisfactory etymological explanation has been given", has this interesting quote:
    Sir W. Jones, in his article on the Spikenard of the Ancients, quotes from Dr. Anderson of Madras, "a very curious philogical remark, that in the Tamul dictionary, most words beginning with nar have some relation to fragrance; as narukeradu, to yield an odour; nártum pillei, lemon-grass; nártei, citron;

    The suggested link to fragrance is really interesting because orange blossoms are famous for their sweet scent. In Greek and Roman classical antiquity, there was a costly perfumed oil imported from the Near East called nardus in Latin (ναρδος in Greek). According to the Liddell and Scott lexicon, nardos is of Semitic origin, cf. Babylonian lardu.

    Incidentally, the Romance words for strawberry—fragola, fresa and fraise—are derived from Latin fraga (strawberry), which shares the same root as the verb fragro, fragrare (to emit a scent): the Sanskrit root dhraj-, to breathe. (sources here and here)
     

    tribant

    New Member
    english
    I am interested in any links between the word aurania (orania) meaning cosmos (the Greek Muse), and the colour orange, and/or the colour gold.

    The link looks tenuous, but the Dutch Fort Orange (Oranje) in New York was called Fort Aurania by the British. Obviously the Dutch for 'orange' would be pronounced more like 'oranie'.

    I would also be interested in any links to the colour gold, via the French 'or' for gold and an 'aura' halo, which may often be golden.

    Many thanks.
     

    Quiviscumque

    Moderator
    Spanish-Spain
    Concerning orange/ourania:
    Your speculations are too brave, since "orange" comes from Sanskrit "narang". Italian, French and English have dropped the initial "n-".

    Concerning aurum/aura:
    If you believe Ernout & Meillet (and you should), the "r" in "aurum" comes from an "s", as attested by the Sabin "ausom". So, again no connection with "aura", a loan from the Greek and conventionally related to "aer".
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I am interested in any links between the word aurania (orania) meaning cosmos (the Greek Muse), and the colour orange, and/or the colour gold.

    The link looks tenuous, but the Dutch Fort Orange (Oranje) in New York was called Fort Aurania by the British. Obviously the Dutch for 'orange' would be pronounced more like 'oranie'.

    I would also be interested in any links to the colour gold, via the French 'or' for gold and an 'aura' halo, which may often be golden.

    Many thanks.

    The Greek Muse's name was not Aurania, but Urania (Ouranos in Greek means Sky).
     

    tribant

    New Member
    english
    Thank you for your replies.

    I had presumed that the anglicised spelling of Ouranos was Aurania, as in the Cunard ship of that name.



    It is still convenient that a Persian narange became an English orange, and yet that term links very nicely with the:
    French ... or meaning gold
    Latin ..... aur meaning gold
    Hebrew . owr meaning illumination or the sun (a golden colour)
    Latin ..... aura meaning illumination or aura
    And or-ange for a golden fruit that looks like the sun or a halo.

    I suppose a link may be derived through the Persian
    daraniya for gold (sometimes taranj)
    and
    naranja for orange (sometimes taranj)

    But would this mean that the Latin / French for gold was similarly influenced by the Persian d-araniya (orania) for gold?



    The link to Muse Ourania (Aurania) may be late, as the Dutch call an orange an Auranea (in pronunciation).


    Thanks again.
     
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