pelə- / Indo-European roots


To fill; with derivatives referring to abundance and multitude.

Oldest form *pelh1-; variant *pleh1-, becoming *plē-.

Derivatives include fill, plenty, folk, accomplish, expletive, plebeian.

I. Zero-grade form *pl̥ə-.
1. Suffixed form *pl̥ə-no-. full1 from Old English full, full, from Germanic *fulnaz, *fullaz, full.
2. fill from Old English fyllan, to fill (from Germanic derivative verb *fulljan, to fill), and fyllu, full amount (from Germanic abstract noun *full-īnō-, fullness).
3. gefilte fish from Old High German fullen, to fill, from Germanic derivative verb *fulljan, from *fulla-, full (see 1 above).
4. plenary, plenitude, plenty, plenum; plenipotentiary, replenish, terreplein from Latin plēnus, full, from Latin stem *plēno-, replacing *plāno- (influenced by Latin verb plēre, to fill; see IV. 1. below).
5. Suffixed form *pl̥ə-go-. a. folk from Old English folc, people; b. Herrenvolk, volkslied from Old High German folc, people. Both a and b from Germanic *folkam.
II. Suffixed form *p(e)lə-u-.
1. Obscure comparative form. più, plural, plus; nonplus, pluperfect, surplus from Latin plūs, more (Archaic Latin plous). See also IV. 5. below.
2. O-grade form *pol(ə)-u-. poly-; hoi polloi from Greek polus, much, many.
3. Possibly from this root (but probably rather from pel-1) is Latin palūs, marsh (? < "inundated"): paludal, palustrine
III. Suffixed form *p(e)lə-o-. Latin compound manipulus (see man-2)
IV. Variant form *plē-.
1. accomplish, complete, compliment, comply, deplete, expletive, implement, replete, supply from Latin plēre, to fill.
2. Possibly suffixed form *plē-dhw-. plebe, plebeian, plebs; plebiscite from Latin plēbs, plēbēs, the people, multitude.
3. Suffixed form *plē-dhwo-. plethora; plethysmograph from Greek derivative verb plēthein, to be full.
4. Suffixed adjective (positive) form *plē-ro-. plerocercoid from Greek plērēs, full.
5. Suffixed (comparative) form *plē-i(s)on-. pleo-, pleonasm; pleiotropy, Pliocene from Greek pleōn, pleiōn, more.
6. Suffixed (superlative) form *plē-isto-. Pleistocene from Greek pleistos, most.
V. Possibly Sanskrit pūraḥ, cake (< "that which fills or satisfies"): poori

[Pokorny 1. pel- 798.]


Flat; to spread.

Oldest form *pelh2-; variant *pleh2-, colored to *plah2-, becoming *plā-.

Derivatives include field, planet, plasma, plastic, polka.

1. Suffixed form *pel(ə)-tu-. field from Old English feld, open field, from Germanic *felthuz, flat land.
2. Suffixed form *pel(ə)-t-es- (by-form of *pel(ə)-tu-).
a. feldspar from Old High German feld, field;
b. veld from Middle Dutch veld, velt, field. Both a and b from Germanic *feltha-, flat land.
3. Variant form *plā-.
a. Suffixed form *plā-ru-. floor from Old English flōr, floor, from Germanic *flōruz, floor;
b. suffixed form *plā-no-. llano, piano2, plain, planarian, plane1, plane2, plane3, planish, plano-, planula; esplanade, explain, pianoforte from Latin plānus, flat, level, even, plain, clear.
4. Suffixed zero-grade form *pl̥ə-mā-. palm1, palm2, palmary, palmier from Latin palma (< *palama), palm of the hand.
5. Possibly extended variant form *plan-.
a. planet; aplanatic from Greek planāsthai, to wander (< "to spread out");
b. perhaps Germanic *flan-. flâneur from French flâner, to walk the streets idly, from a source akin to Old Norse flana, to wander aimlessly.
6. Suffixed zero-grade form *plə-dh-. -plasia, plasma, -plast, plaster, plastic, plastid, -plasty; dysplasia, metaplasm, toxoplasma from Greek plassein (< *plath-yein), to mold, "spread out"
7. O-grade form *polə-.
a. polynya from Russian polyĭ, open;
b. Polack, polka from Slavic *polje, broad flat land, field.

[Pokorny pelə- 805.]


Citadel, fortified high place.

Oldest form perhaps *pelh3- (but exact laryngeal uncertain). Zero-grade form *pl̥h3-.
1. police, policy1, polis, politic, polity; acropolis, cosmopolis, cosmopolite, megalopolis, metropolis, necropolis, policlinic, propolis from Greek polis, city (phonological development unclear).
2. gopuram from Sanskrit pūr, pur-, fortress.

[In Pokorny 1. pel- 798.]

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