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Headword: *koa/lemos
Adler number: kappa,1894
Translated headword: blockhead, dolt, dunce
Vetting Status: high
Conatined in the word is the [adjective] h)le/maton, namely "idle",[1] and the [verb] koei=n, which means "to perceive".[2] So someone who is foolish and perceives fruitlessly is called a koalemos. In Aristophanes koalemoi are those who perceive and understand idly.
Greek Original:
*koa/lemos: e)/gkeitai th=| le/cei to\ h)le/maton, h)/goun to\ ma/taion: kai\ to\ koei=n, o(/ e)sti noei=n. o( ou)=n a)no/htos kai\ ma/thn kow=n koa/lemos le/getai. *koa/lemoi para\ *)aristofa/nei oi( h)le/mata koou=ntes kai\ noou=ntes.
See also kappa 1893.
The folk etymology is taken from the scholia to Aristophanes, Knights 198, where the invective is used. Other derivations combine koei=n with a)lw/menos "wandering" (Suetonius, *peri\ blasfhmiw=n 7), a)/lema "vain" (Orion [Author, Myth]), e)lu/mata "plough stock" (ps.-Zonaras), and h)leo/s "crazed" (also in scholia ad loc.).
[1] This parenthetic explanatory phrase, not in the scholia, is borrowed from eta 203.
[2] cf. epsilon 523, sigma 630.
Keywords: comedy; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology
Translated by: Nick Nicholas on 3 January 2009@09:04:57.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (cosmetics, status) on 3 January 2009@19:17:35.
Catharine Roth (added crossreferences) on 3 January 2009@19:25:49.
David Whitehead (cosmetics) on 5 January 2009@03:31:54.
David Whitehead on 6 March 2013@05:24:44.
Catharine Roth (typo) on 7 March 2013@00:32:40.
David Whitehead (another x-ref) on 3 February 2014@04:40:29.


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