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Related to Messapic: Messapian


An extinct Indo-European language preserved in inscriptions from southeast Italy that date from the sixth to the first century bc. Also called Messapian.
Of or relating to Messapic or its speakers.

[From Latin Messāpia, ancient name for the region of Italy containing Apulia and Calabria.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(məˈseɪ pɪk, -ˈsæp ɪk)

also Mes•sa′pi•an,

an extinct Indo-European language of pre-Roman SE Italy.
[1765–75; < Latin Mesāp(ius) pertaining to Messāpia the Calabrian peninsula + -ic]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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The authors also suggest a substratum or adstratum source for the augmented forms in south Italy, citing Messapic and Greek as the possible source languages.
The main goal of the dictionary is to describe which roots and stems of the vocabulary of the Italic languages (encompassing, for Vaan's purposes, the language families of Sabellic, Latino-Faliscan, and Venetic, and excluding Messapic) are likely to have been inherited from Proto-Indo-European.