Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Contra Trolles - III

I hope readers realize that I have by now calmed down, and am continuing my musings about trolls in an entirely humorous spirit...

Another learnèd comment on Fr Hunwicke's blog has informed me that, rather than "mine demons" (metallici dæmones), perhaps a better term for troll would be cobalus, or cobalinus (which are cognate to kobold and goblin, respectively).

Interestingly, mediæval Latin rendered goblin as gobelinus (which is clearly a variant of cobalinus); more interestingly, it appears that coballus derives from the Greek κόβαλος, meaning a knave or impudent rogue.

Even a new Latin verb is suggested: to troll would be coballinare.  Amusingly, this directly parallels the Greek verb κοβαλικεύω, "to play the knave".

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