August 21, 2012

ཉེ། ཉེན། གཉེན། གཉེན་པོ། དཔུང་གཉེན།

Obviously gnyen po (“antidote”) is related with gnyen/nyen “kinsman, relative,” which, in turn, seems to be related with nye ba “to be close.” Sanskrit words such as parāyaṇa (“last resort or refuge”) and paritrāṇa (“means of protection, refuge”) have been rendered into Tibetan as dpung gnyen. But note that my interest is not the etymologies of these Sanskrit words but rather Tibetan dpung gnyen. The first component seems to be the same dpung meaning “force” (as in military force) and the second component gnyen meaning “friend,” and so could dpung gnyen be etymologised as “ally in force” or “ally [that provides support of] strength”?

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