Monday, 19 December 2011

khapra and phthisis

This is a khapra beetle.

The name is from Hindi खप्रा khaprā "destroyer" from खपना khapanā "to destroy". This is cognate with Sanskrit क्षापयति kṣāpayati, the causative of kṣiyate "to destroy". This is from Proto-Indo-European *dhgʷhi-yo-, the zero-grade suffixed form of *dhgʷhei- "to perish, destroy".

The zero-grade suffixed form *dhgʷhi-n-wo- became Greek φθίνειν "to decay" and φθίσις "wasting, consumption", borrowed as phthisis, an older word for tuberculosis.

*dhgʷhei- is found in the famous phrase *k̂leu̯os n̥dhgʷhitom, which some claim is an example of a reconstructed PIE phrase.