12 June 2012

WITH.BURCH ~ subsidiary burg

Posted 05 June 2012 - 12:52 PM

[Ottema p.203]
dat aan beide zijden van den havenmond eene versterkte burgt gebouwd is

[Sandbach p.203]
that on each side of the harbour a strong citadel has been built

aan beide zijden van de havenmond is een witburcht* gebouwd
* Witburcht - onduidelijk; mogelijk afgeleid van Nieuwfries wiet = nat, dus een nat- of zeeburcht(?).

Ottema's "versterkte" (strengthened) was nothing but a wild guess. Sandbach accepted it and most later translations copied it (Overwijn, De Heer, Raubenheimer, Knul).
Jensma guessed it should be "witburcht" (water- or seaburgh), but nowhere in the whole manuscript WIT (in the meaning of water or sea) is spelled with -TH.
My guess is that it should just be "with-burg": subsidiary burg, in Dutch lit. "bij-burcht".
The most common spelling for "with" in OLB is "MITH": 353 times (including combinations like THÉRMITH, HWERMITH), but "WITH" is also used 16 times.
It is fascinating that the spelling with W seems to only have survived in English:

with - english
mit - german
met - dutch
med - danish, swedish, norwegian
með - icelandic
με, μετά - greek

No comments:

Post a Comment