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Daniel Wallace

Location: Pennsylvania USA
Joined: 07 Aug 2011

Posts: 580

PostPosted: Fri 18 Apr, 2014 8:11 am    Post subject: some linguistic help         Reply with quote

I'm still working on development of a project for this summer. a Patterson type E styled axe head. I've bounced around the forum the past few months reading what i can of old axe head construction and design.

there are two features which I'm hoping to attempt on this project once under construction. one of which is an inlay done in probably copper (I like the way it stands out and I'm not ready to inlay with a solid silver yet) of the name "War Wind" in futhark runes.

its easy enough to just substitute the letters for runes - I wanted to take this a step further and attempt to write it out in a period language of maybe 5-7th century.

the only resource I've used so far are online translators which gives me . . . results - but different results between different translators.

at first I attempted old English/ Anglo Saxon (or so the site described) it came up with
Beadu - war battle fighting strife (sounds to me like maybe the act of war battle etc.)
Byre - strong wind

a second site for Anglo Saxon:
wig - war
wind - wind.

then, i thought to try Norwegian it may fit the design a little better and came up with:
Krigen - war
vind - wind

I laugh a little bit as I attempt this, because I'm terrible at just plane English, but I feel like I might tattoo this work with something that says 'cheese cutter.'
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M. Livermore

Joined: 20 Aug 2008

Posts: 96

PostPosted: Fri 18 Apr, 2014 8:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would get it close enough and then combine the runes into one or two bind runes. It will look cool, have arguable precedent, and make it hard for anyone to call you out on errors.
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Marik C.S.

Location: Germany
Joined: 16 Feb 2010

Posts: 163

PostPosted: Fri 18 Apr, 2014 3:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Not quite the time you're after, but here you can find an old norse dictionary.
German-Norse only I'm afraid but maybe that will help you - that particular author also has some other works somewhere on that website of his, might be an english-norse one among them.
As far as I can tell old norse is more of an 8th century onwards thing, but at least it's close.

Europe - Where the History comes from. - Eddie Izzard
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Greg Bowen

Location: Indiana
Joined: 04 May 2012

Posts: 8

PostPosted: Fri 18 Apr, 2014 11:54 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Daniel,

The nature of Old English is such that you're going to get more than one alternative for how to translate it. We have record of many synonyms for terms that were prominent in the alliterative poetry of the age (the usual explanation is that this provided alternatives to more easily fit the concept into lines with a variety of initial sounds). War or battle is a very frequent concept in martial poems, and so we have record of numerous synonymous terms for it, such as beadu, (ge)camp, gefeoht, gewin, gu, hild, and wig. Gefeoht and gewin were the most commonly used in prose texts (though gewinn could refer to any kind of struggle, including against sin, for instance, so gefeoht is probably the most default prose term. In poetry, however, gefeoht sees only limited use, and gewin, hild, and wig are the most commonly used. I haven't yet studied their relative frequencies in compound forms, however, which could make considerable difference. Beadu, for instance, while rare in isolation, occurs quite often in compound forms.

I don't know if there are a lot of alternatives for wind, but the default term at least would be wind, as in modern English.

In my opinion you'd do quite well with something along the lines of beaduwind or hildewind. Wigwind sounds a little odd to my ear, but is sound in principle I suppose. In the Futhark, I guess that'd be ᛒᛖᚨᛞᚢᚹᛁᚾᛞ for beaduwind or ᚺᛁᛚᛞᛖᚹᛁᚾᛞ for hildewind (you may need to have junicode installed to see the characters there, I'm not sure).

edit: The vast majority of OE texts we have date from the later part of the period, a couple hundred years after the time you're interested in, and they are predominantly West Saxon. I'm not an expert on Germanic before the OE split off, so I welcome any corrections from the more knowledgeable that might allow a still more archaic form for your inscription. The sound which to me is most likely to have been affected by later sound changes is the <ea> in beadu. This is a Mercian form resulting from a change of <> to <ea>, and the <> may or may not have come from an even older <a>. So bdu or badu might be more accurate forms for your inscription. There's also variation in the final vowel, beadu vs. beado, but I believe <o> is the innovation, so I think <u> would be more likely in your period.
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Daniel Wallace

Location: Pennsylvania USA
Joined: 07 Aug 2011

Posts: 580

PostPosted: Mon 21 Apr, 2014 9:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

thanks for the help Greg, I knew this inscription would be a little bit more difficult for me to understand on my own.

I think I want to settle with beaduwind - I wanted to give this project a little bit of an old world feeling, but in the end the over all work may look a little bit more of a merger of 2 cultures. if I can get some time for this project this weekend I'm going to start up the sketch and planning process.

I'm hoping this project will be as exciting for the rest of the forum as I present it as it is to me.
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