IV. The Thracian onomastics
A. Geographical names (A - N)
Achelos, Acheln (Leo Gramm., Georg. Amartol., Georg. Mon.; AD 917) - small river near the town of Anchialo (Pomorie) on the Black Sea. The name is explained from the IE *kel- ‘water’, preserved in the Lith. hydronym Akkl (lake). It is also compared with the Lydian river name of Achéles, Akéles, the Phrygian akala ‘water’. As identical are given also the name of Achelos of five rivers in Greece. The same Thracian name is hidden in the name of the small Black Sea town of Anchialo, attested by Strabo under the form of Anchiál and by Apian as Anchíalos, which is in fact a Grecized form of the Thracian name, linked with the Greek word anchíalos ‘coastal’.
Aiziké (Steph. Byz.) - part of Thracia. It meant ‘country of the goats’. Compare with the Armen. aic, the Greek aix, from the IE *aig’-. Similar is the origin of the Dacian place name Aizisís (a village in Banat).
*Alaaibria - place name, reconstructed from the epithet of Zeus and Hera - Alaaibrinoi (in an inscription from Thracia). As -bria means ‘town’, the whole name may be explained as ‘a town on *Alaja (river)’, and *Alaja is supposedly a river name, which is identical to the Lith. hydronym Alajà (lake), extended from *ala < IE *ola from the IE stem *el-, *ol- ‘to flow’ in the Lith. aléti ‘to be flooded’.
Altos (Steph. Byz.) - village near Thessalonici. Taking into account its location (in a low-land, periodically flooded by the Vardar river), its name (from the IE *Olto-s) must have meant something similar - ‘a flooded place’. Compare with the Illyrian river name Altus (near Dures), the Lith. river name Altis, the Russ. (from Balt.) river name Al’ta, from the IE stem *el-, *ol- in the Lith. aléti ‘to be flooded’.
Anasamus, Ansamus (in guide-books) - fortress at the mouth of the river Assamus (modern Osm). The name e=an(a) ‘on’, compare with the Avest. ana ‘along, on’, the Greek aná ‘on. along’, the Goth. ana ‘on. towards’ + Asamus.
Angissós (in a literary source) - town in Thracia. The name is derived with the suffix -is- from the IE stem *ank-, *ang- in the Old-Ind. añcati ‘to twist, to bend’, anká-h ‘a bend, a curve’, the Greek ankos ‘a valley, an abyss’, the Church Slavic onkot ‘a hook’. Compare to the Thracian village name of Kuprisos, the river name of Panisas (Panisos), etc.
Angítes (Hdt.) - tributary of Struma, today Andzhista. The name means ‘bent (river)’ from the IE *ank-, *ang- ‘to bend, to twist’.
Anthium (Plin.), Antheia (Steph. Byz.), today Atija - rocky peninsula to the west of the town of Sozopol on the Black Sea. The name is explained as a Grecized form (interpreted as the Greek antheion, anthos ‘flower’) from the Thracian *Athija < IE *Akti, related to the Greek akt' ‘steep banks, peninsula, cape’, found in Greek place names such as Akt', Aktion, the Pelasg. Atthis, etc.
Antisara (Steph. Byz.) - a town and a port of the tribe of Dateni in the region of the lower course of the Struma and Mesta rivers, near the modern town of Kavala. The name is explained from ant(i) ‘against’, compare with the Old-Ind. ánti ‘opposite, nearby’, the Lith. añt ‘towards, against’, the Toch. ant ‘through’, the Greek antí ‘against, in front of’ + sara ‘a flow’, the Old-Ind. sara ‘river, stream’, the Pol. river name Sara, from the IE *sor, Old-Pruss. Sarupe, Latv. Sarija. Its structure can be compared with the Lithuanian place names Añt-alksne (:Aksnas, a lake), Añt-ilge (:Ilgs, a lake), Ant-liede (Lieds, a lake).
Apsinthos, Apsynthos (Dion., Steph. Byz.) - a frontier river and a main settlement of the tribe of Apsinthioi (Hdt.) to the north of the Thracian Chersones (modern Galipoli peninsula); Apsinthis (Apsynthis) (Strab., Steph. Byz.) - the country of the same tribe. The name is linked with apsinthion ‘wormwood’, a word thought to be of Pelasgian origin in the Greek language, or with the Illyrian river name Apsus, derived from the IE *p- respectively *ab- ‘water, river’. My opinion is that it is probably connected with the IE *aps ‘aspen’, attested in the Latv. apse, the Old-Pruss. abse, the Lith. apu, the Pol. osa, osina, Old-HighGerman aspa. Compare with the Old-Pruss. place name Abs-medie, Ans-wangen, the Lith. Ap-lavas (a lake), the river name Ap-riuotis.
*Armula - a place name, reconstructed from Hera’s epithet Armuln in an inscription from the Sofia district. Compare to the LIth. river name Armul-ikis , from the Lith. arma ‘swamp, bog’, the river name Arma (in Piedmont), Armit (in Scotalnd).
*Arsela - a place name, reconstructed from the epithet of Sabasios (a Thracian deity) - Arselnos (in an inscription from Nova Zagora). Compare with the river names Old-Pruss. Arsio, Arse, Old-Latv. Arsen, further Arsia (in Istria), Erse < *Ersene < *Arsina (in Germany), etc. - all of them from the IE *ors-, *ers- ‘to flow; moisture’ in the Old-Ind. ársati ‘to flow’, the Hett. ar- ‘the same’. Similar is also the origin of the Dacian place names Arsa, Arsaza, Arsena, Arsila.
Artáns (Hdt.) - a southern tributary of Danube, in the region of the Jantra river. Compare to the Old-Ind. árdati ‘to flow’, the Greek ard ‘to bedew’, the Lith. river name Ardijà. The same is also the origin of the river name Artáns in Bythinia (Asia Minor).
Artiskos (Hdt.), Artákes or Artakos (Theophan. cont.) - river in the country of the Odrises, a tributary of Marica. The name is derived from the same stem, as the previous entry.
Arzos (Ptol.) - a tributary of Hebros (Marica), today - Sazlijka; Arzon (Prok.), Arzum (Tab. Peut.) - a fortress on the same river. - From the IE *arg’o- ‘white, shining’ in the Greek argós ‘white’, the Toch. A rki-, B rkwi- ‘white’, the Hett. har-ki-i (harkis) ‘white’. The name meant ‘white river’.
Asamus (Plin.) - the modern river of Osm. The name was interpreted long time ago as ‘stony river’ from the IE *ak’amo- ‘stony’ in the Old-Ind. asman- ‘stone; sky’, the Avest. asman ‘the same’, the Pelasg. asaminthos ’(stone) bath’, the Lith. akmuo, -eñs ‘stone’. This interpretation fits perfectly to the character of Osm, with stony bed in its upper and partially in its middle course. Compare with Assamum (a town in Dalmatia), which was renamed in the middle ages in Larida from the Latin lapis, -idis ‘stone’.
Asermos (in a literary source) - a place in the Thracian Chersones. It means ‘on the river’: from the IE *ad- ‘at, towards’, the Latin ad ‘towards, at’, the Old-Icel. at ‘at, opposite to’, etc. + the IE *sermo- ‘stream, river’, compare with the Old-Ind. sárma-h ‘stream’, the Thracian river name Sérm (today Strjama), etc. The place names with a preposition are something common in the IE languages, compare the Latin place names ad Aquas, ad Statuas, Asilva (Prok.) = ad Silcam ‘at the forest’, the Bulg. place names Pri drjana, Pri krushata, etc (in the Sevlievo district).
Aths (Hom., Steph. Byz. and others), Athos (Ovid.), Athn (Hdt., Strab.) - mountain on the Akt peninsula in Chalkdiki. The name is explained from the IE *Akt(n), compare with the Greek akt' ‘(high, steep) sea coast’, with the IE -kt- being transformed in Thracian into -tt.
Athrys (Hdt.), Ieterus (Plin.), Iatrus (Iord.) - the Jantra river, which is called Etr at Gabrovo, and Jetr - from Trnovo to its mouth by the old, local population. The name is interpreted from the IE *tro- ‘quick, nimble’ in the Old-HighGerman tar ‘quick’, the Latv. atrs ‘quick’, etc. Ieterus is the Thracian form, while the forms with A-, Ia- are Dacian, in which the IE was transformed into a, ia.
Atlas (Hdt.) - river with sources in Hemus (Stara Planina, the Balkan m-s), a tributary of Danube between the Black Sea and Jantra. The name is identical with the Latvian river name Adula, the German river name Attel < Attula (807 AD) from *Adulla or *Adula; Adulas was also called the Saint Gotard pass in the Alps after the rivers there. The Thracian Atlas comes from the older *Atulas from the IE *Adulos. All these form s are derived from the IE stem *ad(u)- ‘stream.
Bairos (Ptol.) - town in Mygdonia (a country to the east of the lower course of the Vardar river). The names (the Greek B=v) must have sounded as *Vairos from the IE *Uoiro-s and must be identical with the Lithuanian place name Vaira from the adjective vairùs, vairas ‘spinning’, related to the Swed. vrr ‘a spiral’. From here it can be compared to the Bulg. Vurteshka, Vurtol.
Batkúnion (in Byzantine sources) - fortress in Thracia, on the northern slopes of the Rhodopes near the village of Batkun, Pazardzhik district. There is also another woody place to the north of the village of Skravena, Botevgrad district, near the Preobrazhenski monastery, which is also called Batkun. The exact correspondence is found in the Baltic languages - the Zhematian (from the XVI-th c.) place name Batkunii, in the Lithuanian Batkunu káimas (‘the village of Batkuni’), initially a clan name from the Lith. personal name of Batknas.
Bérs (Steph. Byz.) - town in Thracia. The name is derived from the adjective, analogous to the Lith. b'ras ‘brown, swarthy’, the Latv. brs ‘the same’ - from the IE *bher-. Probably it is derived from the soil colour or it was a river name. Compare the river names in Lithuania Br, Br, Br-upis, Br-up, in Latvia Br-upe, Berka.
Bérg (Strab.) - village in Bisaltia, today Tahino on the western bank of the lake Prasias (Tahino). This name contains the Thracian word *berg(s) ‘a high place, bank, mountain’ from the IE *bhergho- in the Old-Bulg. breg ‘bank, coast’, Old-Icel. berg, Old-HighGerman berg, German Berg ‘mountain’.
Bergépolis (Steph. Byz.) - town in Thracia. The name has two components: the Thracian Berge- (see the previous entry) + the Greek pólis ‘town’.
Bergison (Steph. Byz.) - fortress on the upper course of Hebros (Marica). It is derived from the Thracian *berga(s) with the suffix -is.
Bergúl (Prok.) - town in Turkish Thracia, today Ljule-Burgas. It is derived from the Thracian *berga(s) with the suffix -ula.
Bersamae (G. Rav.) - a village between Anchialo and Kabile, today Ajtos. Probably it comes from the Thracian *berza or *berzas ‘birch’, related to the Lith. béras, the Latv. brzs, Old-Pruss. berse, Russ. bereza, Bulg. breza, etc. from the IE stem *bher()g- ‘to shine, white’. The same is also the origin of the Dacian name Berssovia (a town).
Bólb (Thuk., Strab.) - lake in Mygdonia, today Beshikgjol. The name is identical to a number of Baltic names: the Latv. place names Balvi, Bàlvis, the Old-Latv. Bolva (from *Balv), the Russ. (from Balt.) river name Bolva, the Lith. Bálvis (a lake), the Old-Pruss. Balweniken. The initial common noun *balva had not been obviously preserved, it can be explained from the Lith. balà ‘a swamp’, the Latv. bala ‘a clayey valley’, pl. balas ‘bad, wet soil’. The Thracian Bolb (from the IE *Bholu) instead of *Balva was obviously early Grecized because if its linking with the Greek bólbos ‘onion’, bolbine ‘a type of plant’, etc.
*Bolbabria - a place name, reconstructed from the dweller’s name Bolbabrinoi (in an inscription from Stanke Dimitrov [Dupnica]). The name has two components: Bolba-=Bolb (see above) and bria ‘town’.
Bórmiskos (Thuk.) - a village in Mygdonia, at the outlet of the lake Bolb into the sea. It was probably derived from the earlier form of *Bermiskos and is related with Bermion oros (Hdt.), a mountain in the district of Verija, Macedonia. It can be explained as derived from a Thracian word, similar to the Old-Icel. barmr ‘a border region’ from the IE *bhermo-, *bhormo-, with the suffix -isk-.
Bredai (Prok.) - fortress in the region of Hemimont, near the modern village of Momkovo, Svilengrad district. It is explained from the IE *bhredh- ‘to wade, to trample’ and probably was identical with the Russ. bred, bredina ‘pasture-ground’, the Russ, Church Slavic bredon bresti ‘to cross by a ford’, the common Slavic brod ‘a ford’, the Lith. brada ‘soft soil’.
Brendice, Brentice (in guide-books) - village in the Gjumjurdzhina (Komotini) district, today Kapdzhilar. The name is derived from the Thracian *brenta(s) ‘a deer’ (see below).
Brentopara (in a Greek inscription) - village in Thracia, probably in the district of Karlovo. It is a two-component name, Brento- is identical to the Messapian bréndon ‘deer’ (Hesych.), from the IE *bhrento-s. Compare also the Latv. bridis ‘deer’, the Lith. bríedis (a loan-word from Latvian), the Old-Pruss. braydis ‘the same’, etc. For the second element -para see below, chapter V.
Burdapa (from an inscription) - village with a sanctuary of the nymphs Burdapnai, today - the village of Saladinovo, Pazardzhik district. A two-component name, meaning ‘ford of a river’: the Thracian *burd- ‘ford’ from the IE *bhd(h)-, the common Slavic brod ‘ford’ + -apa ‘water, river’, identical to the Old-Pruss. ape ‘water, river’, apus ‘a spring’, the Old-Ind. ap- ‘water’.
Burdenis, Burdipa (from guide-books), Burdepto (Prok.) - station of the left bank of Hebros. The modern Hissar opposite to the bridge over Marica near Svilengrad. The name is a derivative of burd- ‘a ford’.
Burticom (in a guide-book) - village at the Black Sea, between Apollonia and Tjunias, approximately near the modern village of Brodilovo. A two-component name, the first part Burti-, Burdi- is identical to Burd- in Burdapa (see above); -dizos, -dizon (found also under the form of -diza in place names) means ‘a fortress’ and is related to the Avest. uz-daza- ‘a heaping, a fortification’, pairi-daza ‘a fence’ from the IE *dheig’ho, Old-Pers. did, New-Pers. diz, dez ‘a fortress’, from the IE *dhig’h.
Byzántion (Hdt., Thuk., Ptol., etc.), Byzantium (Liv., Amm. Marc., etc.) - the town Byzantion at the Bosporus (later - Constantinople). The name contains an extinct tribal name meaning ‘goats’ with -antes: compare the Avest. bza ‘goat’ from the IE *bhg’o-s, the New-Pers. buz ‘goat’, the Old-Ir. bocc, the Cymr. bwch ‘goat’, etc.
Calsus (in an inscription) - village in Thracia, Stara Zagora district. Its stem is identical to the Latvian place names Kalsi, Kalsi, Kals-Strauts ‘dry river’, from the Latv. kàlst (-stu, -tu) ‘to dry out’. The Thracian Calsus from the initial *Kaltsus < IE *(s)kolt-so- must had meant ‘a dry place’.
Chalástra (Strab., Steph. Byz.), Chalestra (Hdt.) - village at the mouth of the Vardar river. It can be interpreted as a two-component one from the IE *Kalo-sro ‘muddy, swampy river’. Compare the first part to the Old-Bulg. kal, the Bulg. kal ‘mud’, etc.; -stra comes from the older *strava, related to the Lith. sravà ‘a stream’, the Latv. strava ‘stream, torrent’, the Greek rhóos ‘stream, river’.
Daphabae (in a guide-book) - village near Adrianopolis (Edirne), today - Tehekan. A composite name which first part Daph- is related to the Lith. dpas ‘a flood’ from the IE *dhapo-s; -abae may be with a secondary -b- from the earlier -apae as in the place name Zald-aba, which also appeared in the form with -p- (Zald-apa). The latter is derived from the IE *p ‘water, river’ in the Old-Ind. p- ‘water’, the Old-Pruss. ape ‘river’.
Dáton, Dátos (Hdt., Strab., Steph. Byz.) - village of the tribe of Edoni near the modern town of Kavala. It is identified with the village of Bereketli. Identical to the Alb. datë ‘place, settlement’ from the IE *dht.
Dingion (Prok.) - fortress near Marica. Identical to a number of Baltic place names: the Old-Pruss. Dinge (forest), the Latv. place name Diñgas, Dindzhe (meadow), Ding-upte (stream), etc., interpreted from the Latv. dinga ‘a plant’ and ‘fertile place’, related to the Old-Icel. dyngia ‘dunghill’, the Anglo-Saxon dynge, the Old-HighGerman tunga ‘manuring’.
Dunax (Strab.), Donuca (Liv.), Dinace (in an inscription) - the Rila mountain. The name is derived from the IE *dhnk- and is related to the Anglo-Saxon dun ‘hill, mountain’, the German Düne ‘dune’, the Gal. dnum ‘fortress’ from the IE *dhn-.
Dm (Ptol.), Dimae, Dymae, Demae (in guide-books) - town in Thracia, today - Feredzhik at the lower course of Hebros (Marica). Related names are found in the Baltics: the Old-Pruss. place name Dumen, the Lith. river name Dm, the Latv. place names Dmis, Dmiciems, Dmu-kalns, the Russ. Dima, Dimica (from the Balt. *Duma). All these names are derived from the Lith. dumas ‘dark, dark-brown (for cattle)’, resp. the Latv. dms ‘dark-brown’ - from the IE *dhmo-s. The place name Dimum (Tab.Peut) from the district of Svishtov has the same origin.
Egerica (in a guide-book) - a village in western Thracia, today - Leshta-han near Ihtiman. Egerica is probably a Grecized from *Egerik, an adjective from a local name, which probably sounded as *Vegera. The latter has exact counterparts in the Baltics: the Lith. river name Veger, the Zhemait. (XVI-th c.) Vegera (a river), the Latv. river name Vedzere = ve-dzere from the IE *egera, a derivative from the IE stem *eg - ‘damp, wet’ in the Dutch wak ‘damp’, the Engl. wake. The initial V- disappeared under a Greek influence.
Ereta (Plin.) - town to the south of Odessos (Varna), at the mouth of Panissos (today - Kamchija). The name is derived form the initial *Vereta, the initial V- having disappeared under Greek influence. The reconstructed form is identical to the Lithuanian river name Veretà, which is derived from the IE stem *er in the Lith. vírti (vérdu, viriau) ‘to boil, to bubble’, the Old-Bulg. vreti vria ‘to boil’. The village obviously got its name from a spring.
Germanía (Prok.) - town in the region of Pautalia (Kjustendil), today - Sapareva banja. The town was situated along the river of Dzherman, previously known as Germanica (1378 AD), German (1479), from the antique German-. It is explained from the IE *ghermo- ‘warm’ in the Old-Ind. gharmá ‘heat’, the Armen. jerm ‘warm’, the Greek themós ‘the same’. The Thracian village obviously got its name from the river name of *Germana (resp. -as). Similar name is attested in the Baltics: Germona (in a Russian source from 1559 AD).
*Gesia (or *Gesiai) - place name reconstructed from the epithet of Heros - Gsienos (in an inscription from the district of Plovdiv). Similar are the Old. Pruss. place names Gesaw (the Lith. Gesavà), Geyze-lawken, the Latv. Dzêsiens (a swamp), explained from the Old-Pruss. geeyse ‘a stork kingfisher’, the Latv. dzse, dzs(n)is ‘heron, kingfisher’.
Ginula (in an inscription from the district of Topolovgrad, the reading is uncertain) - a region of Thracia. A similar name is found in Old-Kurian (Baltic): “an dem Ginulle-Bache, ... den Ginullen-Bache anwärts”; it is explained as ‘a dried out stream’ from the Latv. g'inis, g'inst ‘to spoil’. Compare also the Latv. place name of Gi’nuli.
Háimon (Hdt., Strab.), Háimos (Prol., Steph. Byz.), Haemus (Plin.) - the Balkan m-s (Stara planina). The name is explained from the earlier Thracian form *Saiman (resp. -as) meaning ‘a ridge, a chain’ from the IE stem *si-: si- (sei- : si-) ‘to link’ in the Old-Ind. smán- ‘a ridge, a boundary’, the Irish sm ‘a chain’. The initial S- was transformed in spiritus asper (denoted with H-) under a Greek influence, when the name was interpreted with the identical Greek haimós ‘thicket, brushwood’. The old name of Haemus was preserved in the Bulgarian dialects as Im(-mountain); it is also preserved in the name Emine-burun - a cape on the Black Sea.
Harmonia (Hierokl., Synekd.) - village to the east of the middle course of Vardar. It is supposed Harmonia is a Grecized form of some Thracian name - *-Armonia or *Armania (compare the village name of Germanía, formed from a river name with the suffix -i). As such it can be compared with the Lith. river name Armona, Armenà, from the Lith. armuõ, -eñs ‘a swamp, bog’, arma ‘the same’; for more related names see above under *Armula.
Harpessós (App.) - river in Thracia, a tributary of Hebros. It can be reconstructed as the Thracian *Varpassas (resp. *Varpatas), which was interpreted in Greek as *Arpsos and received the initial H- after words such as the Greek hárpax ‘predatory’, hárpe ‘a falcon’. Related to the Thracian name are the Latv. vrpats ‘whirlpool’, the Lith. varpti (-pa, -pia) ‘to dig’ as well as a number of Baltic place names: the Old-Pruss. Warpen, Warpunen, the Lith. river names Vape, Varputs, Várpapievis, etc.
Hebros (Hdt., Thuk., Eurip., etc.), Hebrus (Plin., Verg., Ovid.) - the modern Marica river. The old name is preserved in the upper course as Ibr and also in the village name of Poibrene, Panagjurishte district. Other identical names are: Ibar, Morava’s tributary in Serbia, the Old-Bulg. Ibr; Ibr, Teterev’s tributary in the Northern Ukraine near Kiev; Ibru (river) in Romania. The Bulg. Obr and the Serb. Ibar are derived from an earlier form *Ibr. Apparently, it was an identical form in various IE l-s - Thracian, Illyrian, Dacian, etc. As the short e in foreign names cannot produce -i- in Bulgarian, Serbian, etc., we must assume the Greek rendering with e was incorrect, living aside the added initial H-. The forms Ibr, Ibar, Ibr can be derived: from the IE *Eibhro-s, assuming the diphthong ei was monoftongisied in Slavic in a long i; or from the IE *Jbhro-s, leading to the Slavic *Jbr = *Ibr. The Thracian name obviously had a diphthong in the beginning. It can be supposed it is derivative from the IE stem *eibh- in the Pelasgian (pre-Greek) eib ‘to drip, to spill’ and ‘to flow’, which looks plausible for a river name. Nonetheless the interpretation of this name is still unclear.
Id (Skyl.) - town in the Thracian Chersones (Galipoli). It is explained form the IE *idhu- ‘a tree’ in Old-Ir. fid, Genitive fedo ‘a tree, trees, forest’, the Old-Icel. vidr ‘forest, trees, a tree’, the Old-HighGerman witu, wito ‘a tree’. The initial V- disappeared under a Greek influence.
Idakos (Thuk.) - another village in the Thracian Chersones. From the initial *Vidak-, a derivative of the IE *idhu- ‘a tree’ (see the previous entry).
Ilion (Steph. Byz.) - town in SE Thracia. The name is explained from the IE *l-, *lu- ‘mud, slime’ in the Greek ls, -os ‘mud, slime’, the Church Slavic il ‘mud’. Compare also with the Old-Pruss. river name Ilie.
Iuras (Plin.) - river in the Strandzha mountain between Samjudesos (Midija) and Tjunias (Kap-Inead on the Black Sea). The name is identical with the Lith. river names J'ra, J'r, J'r-upis, the Zhemait. (XVI c.) river name Jura, etc. The correspondent common nouns in the Baltic l-s - the Lith. jra, pl. jros, jrs, the Latv. jra, jre, pl. jras, the Old-Pruss. Accusative jrin - mean ‘a sea’.
Kabl (Harpokr., Demosth., Ptol.; in inscriptions), Cabyle (Eutrop., Amm. Marc.) - town in Thracia, to the NE of the modern village of Izvor (previously Tavshantepe), the Jambol district, at the bend of Tundzha. The place is flooded by the high waters of Tundzha even nowadays. Opposite to the village of Zavoj Tundzha is joined by a large tributary, called in Turkish Azmak = ‘bog, swamp’. Taking into account the geographical context, Kabyl can be compared with the English quab, the Norw. dial. kvapa ‘to pour a liquid’. An exact counterpart is found in Old-Pruss - the river name Cabula (instead of *Gabula), attested in 1273 AD. These names are derived from the IE *Gbhul from the stem *gebh-, which contains the cited above English and Norwegian words.
Kalíndonia, Kalíndia (Ptol.) - town in Mygdonia. The name is related to the Old-Pruss. Galindo (a place name, from 1231 AD) and the tribal name Galindai, attested by Ptolemeus. Compare also with the Old-Pruss. Galynde (forest), Galinden (a village), etc. These name are derivatives from the Lith. gãlas ‘end, border of a field, meadow or forest’, the Latv. gals ‘environs’ - from the IE *golo-s. Compare to the semantic parallels in Bulgarian: the place names Krajna, Krajno selo, Kraishta, etc.
Kapistúria (Prok.) - fortress along the upper course of Hebros, near Bessapara. It meant ‘hilly country’: Kapi- is related to the Latv. kãpa, kãpe ‘long mountainous strip, dune, slope’, the Lith. kopà ‘sandy hill’; -sturia comes from the IE *stri ‘country, environs’, compare with the Old-Bulg. strana from the Proto-Slavic *strn, the Bulg. pro-stor, the Old-Bulg. prostereti ‘to extend’. Compare structurally to the Old-Pruss. place name Kappe-galin, the Latv. Kapas-gals, the Lith. Kap-lava.
Keiris (Dio.) - cave in western Hemus. The name was rendered in Greek as Keiris (with ei-i) and must have sounded in Thracian as *Kiris, which was probably the Thracian word for ‘mountain’ or ‘forest’, related with the Old-Ind. girí-h ‘mountain’, the Avest. gairi- ‘the same’, the Lith. girià, the Zhemait. gìré ‘forest’, the village name Gires káimas, the Latv. dzira, dzire ‘forest’ - from the IE *gr(i)-. That a cave can be named after a neighbouring mountain or a hill is evident from modern names, such as Magurata, a cave near the village of Rabisha, Belogradchik district, which name = the Rom. magura ‘hill’, a loan-word from Slavic, from *mgyl. Related to the Thracian Keiris (=Kiris) is also the Dacian Giri- in the place name *Giri-dava, reconstructed from a dweller’s name of Giridavenses (in an inscription from the Pleven district), ‘a mountain or forest town’ as in Ziri- (with Z- from g) in the village name Zirí-daua (Ptol.), a town in Thracia.
Keirpara (in an inscription from the Goce Delchev district) - village, identified with Ciropol (today - Gospodinci) near the town if Goce Delchev. The name is rendered in Greek as Keirpara (with ei=i) and must have sounded *Kirpara in Thracian. The first component Kir- comes from kiri-, ‘mountain’ or ‘forest’ (see the previous entry) and -para ‘village’. Structurally and semantically, Keirpara is similar with the Latv. Dzir-ciems = dzira, dzire ‘forest’ and ciems ‘village’.
Kellai (in an inscription), Cillae, Cillium (in guide-books) - station near Chirpan, to the north of Hebros. The name is compared with the Old-HighGerman quella, the German Quelle ‘a spring’ from the IE *geln. Similar is also the origin of the name of the station of Kelle on the Roman road Via Egnatia in Macedonia.
Kripárn (Prok.) - fortress in Hemimontus. The name was rendered Kiripáron in Greek and is identical to that of the previous entry.
*Kersula - a place name, reconstructed from the epithet of Zeuz - Kersullos (in an inscription). Compare with the Lith. place name Kerulikiu káimas, probably from the Lith. kerulis ‘wood-pigeon, cushat’, derived from the Lith. kéras ‘with black and white dots’ from the IE *k()er()so-s ‘black’.
Kurpisos (in an inscription) - village in Thracia, probably in the Chirpan district. The name obviously contains the suffix -is- and kurp and is related to the Lith. place name Kurp kámas, Kurpu-laukis, the Latv. Kaz-kurpe, Kurpes-grvis, Kurp-kalns, etc., explained from the Lith. kupti (-iù) ‘to dig’, similar to the Russ. korpat’ ‘dig around’, the Ukr. korpati ‘to dig’ from the Proto-Slavic *krpati. From the same stem are also the Bulg. village name Krpec and the Croat. Krpec.
Kurtuxura (Prok.) - fortress north of Hebros. A two-component name which must have sounded *Kurtuzura in Thracian, meaning ‘a forest stream’. It is related to the Old-Pruss. korto ‘grove’ (from the Baltic *kurt), the Greek krtos ‘a tangle of reed’; -zura=*sura ‘current, stream’, compare the Old-Ind. sir' ‘current’ from the stem *ser- ‘to flow’, compared with -sura in the Thracian village name Kará-sura (Prok.), a fortress in Thracia.
Kpsela (Strab., Ptol., etc.) - town on the lower course of Hebros, today - Ipsala. The Thracian name must have been *Kupsela, related to the Lith. kupslis ‘heap, small hill’, compare with the place names in Lithuania Kupliai, in Latvia - Kupei.
Lingos (Steph. Byz.) - fortress of the tribe of Potidei. The name is identical to the Latv. place name Lingas; compare also with the Latv. place names Lingi, Ling'i, Lingas-dik'is, the Lith. Ling, Lingenai, the Zhemait. (XVI-th c.) place name Lingi, the Old-Pruss. Ling-war. All these names contain the reduced *lg of the IE stem *leng- in the Lith. léng ‘lowland, a meadow in a lowland’ the Old-Bulg. long, the New Bulg. lg ‘meadow’, the Russ. lug, etc.
Markéllai, Markela (in Byzantine sources) - village in Thracia, on the left bank of the Mochurica river (previously - Azmakdere), today - the ruins Karnobatski Hissar near Karnobat. It is supposed that the name contains the name of the upper course of that river: Marcil (Marsil, Mrsil). Probably Markellai is a derivative of the original river name. Similar names are found in Lithuania - Marklis (a lake), Markelne (a river). They are derived from the Lith. markà ‘a pit for steeping flax or hemp’, the Pol. river name Mrocza, the Bulg. Mraká(ta) (a place in SW Bulgaria), the Old-Lith. river name Mark-up (in a Russian source), the Old-Pruss. place name Marken.
Meldia (in a guide-book) - station between the modern towns of Slivnica and Dragoman, NW of Sofia. Counterparts of this name are found in the Baltics: the Lith. river name Med, Meldínis (a lake), the Latv. place name Meldine, Medini, the Zhemait. place name Meldi-kvirshe, Meldini, the Old-Pruss. Mildio, Mildie (a stream), etc. All these name are explained from the Lith. meldà, méldas ‘marsh reed’ , the Latv. meldi ‘reed’, related to the Old-HighGerman melta, the Anglo-Saxon melde, etc., from the IE stem *meldh-.
*Msypa - place name, reconstructed from the dweller’s name Msypnoi (in an inscription from the Karlovo district). The name is derived from the IE *Ms-up ‘mossy river’: from the IE *mso-s in the Old-HighGerman, Anglo-Saxon mos ‘moss, swamp’, the Old-Icel. mosi ‘the same’, the Lith. msai ‘mould on yoghourt’, the river name Msys, the Church Slavic mh ‘moss’, etc.; the second component upa = the Lith. ùp ‘river’, the Latv. upe ‘river, stream’.
Mygdonía (Thuk., Ptol.), Mygdonís (Strab.), Mygdonia (Plin.) - region along the middle and lower course of Ehedoros (Galiko) down to the sea, to the east of Vardar. These low-lands contain a number of swamps, that is why Mygdonia may be interpreted as ‘swampy country’ from the IE *Mko-ghdhm, the first component being related to the Latv. muka ‘swamp, where one can sink’, mukls ‘swampy’, the Lith. muklìs ‘damp, swampy’, compare with the Lith. river name Mk, the Zhemait. river name Muka, Mukja, the Latv. place name Mukas, etc.; the second component is related to the Greek chthn ‘soil, land’, the Old-Ir. du, (Genitive) don ‘place, country’, etc. Compare also the Thracian place name Rumbo-dona.
Néstos (Hdt., Thuk., Arist., Strab., Mela, etc.) - the river Mesta. The name is explained from the initial *Nettos from the IE *Ned-to-s from the IE stem *ned- in the Old-Ind. nádati ‘rumlble, roar’, nadi- ‘river’, the Old-Ir. nes ‘river’, the river names Neda in Greece (Arcadia), Nedn (in Messenia). Similar is also the origin of the river names Nestos in Dalmatia and at the island of Paros. As early as Plinius (I-th c. BC) recorded the form Mestus, II-III-th c. AD coins have ‘Mestos’ which was adopted by the Slavs, who, however, changed the gender (--> Mesta) following that of the common noun reka. Most probably the Greeks gave a new meaning to the initial Nestos from the Greek adjective mestós ‘full’ (e.g. in the expression mestós hdatos ‘full with water’). The earlier form was preserved in the name of an upper tributary of Mesta - Nestenica.