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О некоторых терминах наивной венерологии от Пушкина до Бодуэна

N. I. Kireyev, I. A. Sapogov

Pages 387 - 407

On Some Terms of Folk Nosology for STDs, from Pushkin to Baudouin de Courtenay

The paper deals with the etymology and semantics of three Russian nouns (and their derivatives) which have received unsatisfactory lexicographic treatment. For the word ‚venérik‘ ‘a person suffering from an STD’ (related to ‚veneríčeskij‘, ‘sexually transmitted’), we reject its traditional etymological interpretation as a German loan, because the Russian term has been attested earlier than its German counterpart ‚Veneriker‘. The borrowing possibly occurred in the opposite direction: from Russian into German. Some slang words with this root that are not attested in dictionaries are briefly discussed as well. As concerns the obscene archaism ‚xuerýk‘/‚xuerík‘, supposed to mean ‘gonorrhoea’, it was almost completely neglected by etymologists, despite its usage in Aleksandr Pushkin’s correspondence and its presence in Vladimir Dal´’s dictionary. The only conjecture made previously on this matter is that the term was coined analogically on the basis of ‚venérik‘, the root being undoubtedly xuj- ‘penis’. We argue that this derivation is untenable and propose to treat this word as a compound of the type N+V: the second root would be, in this case, ryg- ‘eruct, burp; vomit’. Finally, the case of ‚gemorrój‘ exemplifies typical difficulties related to lexicographic description of nosological vocabulary.


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