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Re: Icelandic dinosaur names

On Thu, Apr 14, 2011 at 12:34 PM, Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. <tholtz@umd.edu> wrote:
> I found this on the Icelandic wikipedia page:
> http://is.wikipedia.org/wiki/Listi_yfir_risae%C3%B0lur
> Which lists the Icelandic equivalents to dinosaur names.
> Clicking on the one for Tyrannosaurus 
> (http://is.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grame%C3%B0la) reveals the Icelandic 
> equivalents for some
> suprageneric names as well:
> Seildżr (Chordata)
> Skrišdżr (Sauropsida)
> Risaešlur (Dinosauria)

Encoding issue: what should be a "y" with an accent is showing up as a
"z" with a hacek (-dýr, not -dżr). I'm pretty certain that "dýr" means
"animal" and is cognate with German "Tier" (same meaning) and English
"deer" (much more restricted meaning, at least in Modern English).

German also has native names for certain higher taxa -- for example, a
vertebrate is a "Wirbeltier". The Icelandic practice of crafting a
native name for every genus seems pretty peculiar, though. (But neat!)

T. Michael Keesey