ten- / Indo-European roots


To stretch.

Derivatives include tendon, pretend, hypotenuse, tenement, tenor, entertain, lieutenant, tone.

I. Derivatives with the basic meaning.
1. Suffixed form *ten-do-. a. tend1, tender2, tendu2, tense1, tent1; attend, contend, detent, distend, extend, intend, ostensible, pretend, subtend from Latin tendere, to stretch, extend; b. portend from Latin portendere, "to stretch out before" (por-, variant of pro-, before; see per1) , a technical term in augury, "to indicate, presage, foretell".
2. Suffixed form *ten-yo-. tenesmus; anatase, bronchiectasis, catatonia, entasis, epitasis, hypotenuse, neoteny, paratenic host, peritoneum, protasis, syntonic, telangiectasia from Greek teinein, to stretch, with o-grade form ton- and zero-grade noun tasis (< *tn̥-ti-), a stretching, tension, intensity.
3. Reduplicated zero-grade form *te-tn̥-o-. tetanus from Greek tetanos, stiff, rigid.
4. Suffixed full-grade form *ten-tro-. a. tantra from Sanskrit tantram, loom; b. sitar from Persian tār, string.
5. Basic form (with stative suffix) *ten-ē-. tenable, tenacious, tenaculum, tenant, tenement, tenet, tenon, tenor, tenure, tenuto; abstain, contain, continue, detain, entertain, lieutenant, maintain, obtain, pertain, pertinacious, rein, retain, retinaculum, retinue, sustain from Latin tenēre, to hold, keep, maintain (< "to cause to endure or continue, hold on to").
6. Extended form *ten-s-. Suffixed zero-grade form *tn̥s-elo-. tussah from Sanskrit tasaram, shuttle.
II. Derivatives meaning "stretched" hence "thin"
1. Suffixed zero-grade form *tn̥-u-. thin from Old English thynne, thin, from Germanic *thunniz, from *thunw-.
2. Suffixed full-grade form *ten-u-. tenuous; attenuate, extenuate from Latin tenuis, thin, rare, fine.
3. Suffixed full-grade form *ten-ero-. tender1, tendril; intenerate from Latin tener, tender, delicate.
III. Derivatives meaning "something stretched or capable of being stretched, a string"
1. Suffixed form *ten-ōn-. tendon, teno- from Greek tenōn, tendon.
2. Suffixed o-grade form *ton-o-. tone; baritone, tonoplast from Greek tonos, string, hence sound, pitch.
3. Suffixed zero-grade form *tn̥-yā-. taenia; polytene from Greek tainiā, band, ribbon.

[Pokorny 1. ten- 1065.]

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