leuk- / Indo-European roots


Light, brightness.

Derivatives include light1, illuminate, lunatic, lucid, lynx.

I. Basic form *leuk-.
1. Suffixed form *leuk-to-. a. light1 from Old English lēoht, līht, light; b. lightning from Old English līhtan, to shine, from Germanic *leuht-jan, to make light. Both a and b from Germanic *leuhtam.
2. Basic form *leuk-. luculent, lux; Lucifer, luciferin from Latin lūx, light.
3. Suffixed form *leuk-smen-. limbers, limn, lumen, luminary, luminous; illuminate, phillumenist from Latin lūmen, light, opening.
4. Suffixed form *leuk-snā-. Luna, lunar, lunate, lunatic, lune, lunula; mezzaluna, sublunary from Latin lūna, moon.
5. Suffixed form *leuk-stro-. a. luster, lustrum from Latin lūstrum, purification; b. illustrate from Latin lūstrāre, to purify, illuminate.
6. Suffixed form *leuko-dhro-. lucubrate; elucubration from Latin lūcubrāre, to work by lamplight.
7. Suffixed form *leuk-o-. leuko-; melaleuca from Greek leukos, clear, white.
8. Suffixed form *leuk-os, *leuk-es-. risk perhaps ultimately from Old Iranian raučah-, day (Old Persian raucah-).
II. O-grade form *louk-.
1. Suffixed form *louk-o-. a. lea from Old English lēah, meadow (< "place where light shines"), from Germanic *lauhaz; b. levin from Middle English levin, lightning, from Germanic *lauh-ubni-.
2. Suffixed (iterative) form *louk-eyo-. lucent, lucid; elucidate, noctiluca, pellucid, relucent, translucent from Latin lūcēre, to shine.
III. Zero-grade form *luk-.
1. Suffixed form *luk-sno-. link2, lychnis from Greek lukhnos, lamp.
2. Attributed by some to this root (but more likely of obscure origin) is Greek lunx, lynx (as if from its shining eyes) lynx, ounce2

[Pokorny leuk- 687.]

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