Royal Holloway, University of London<white space>Department of English



Old English Vocabulary

List 5


lif life libban / lifigan to live
laf leavings, survivors læfan to leave

wig war, combat wigan to fight
gewegan to fight wigend warrior
wiga warrior  

cuman to come, go cuma visitor
cyme arrival, coming  

cuþ known, familiar cyþþ known region
cunnan to know how, be able cunnian to test, try
cene bold, keen fracod / forcuþ wicked
cennan to make known (ge)cnawan to know
(ge)cyþan make known, announce  

magu / mago / maga son, young man mæcg / mecg man
mæg kinsman / kinswoman mægþ maiden, woman
mage kinswoman mægþ tribe, nation

siþ journey, venture  ge-siþ companion, retainer
siðian to journey sendan to send
siþ later siðest latest
siþþan afterwards, since

feorh life, soul, person firas human beings
ferhþ spirit, heart

leod man leode people
leod people, nation 

guþ war, battle, fight 

æt at, in, by, with 
min my, mine 

helm helmet, protection ofer-helmian overhang, overshadow
behelan conceal, hide, cover heolstor hiding place, darkness 
hell hell  heal(l) hall 
ge-hola protector

giefan to give giefa giver
giefu / -gieft gift giefeðe given, allotted, fated
gafol tribute


List adapted from Stephen A. Barney, Word Hoard: An Introduction to Old English Vocabulary, 2nd ed. (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1985).


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Last updated 2 July 1999