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Bengenchest et aliquando famechest corrupte agnum castum vocant arabes


Bñchest ACD | Bengenchest B | Bengenkest ef

famechest ACD | famanchest B e {'anian' misread as 'aman', 'i' standing for /ğ/} | fansauchest f

vocant (uocãt B) arabes BC e | vocãt ara. A | arabs f


Bengenchest and sometimes corruptedly famechest, this is what the Arabs call our Latin agnus castus {"chaste tree"}.

Commentary and botanical identification:

Cf. Siggel (1950: 21): ﺑﻨﺨﺄﺑﮕﺸﺖ /banğangušt/ Vitex agnus castus (Verbenac.) and (1950: 57): ﻓﻨﺨﺎﺑﻛﺸﺖ fanğankušt = ﺑﻨﺨﺎﺑﻛﺸﺖ banğankušt.

The variation of the initial consonant between /b/ and /f/ is due to the absence of /p/ in Arabic. The word is a Persian loan ﭘﻨﺢ ﺍﺑﮕﺸﺖ /panğ angošt/, (lit.) "five fingers" and is glossed in Steingass (1892: 256) as "cinquefoil", and in the Liber fundamentorum pharmacologiae, vol. 1, CAPUT SECUNDUM, Littera Ba, p. 42: P. {=Persian} ﺑﻨﺢ ﺍﺑﮕﺸﺖ bendschen guscht {sic!} Quinquefolium.

In Arabic the word stands for Vitex agnus castus L. "chaste tree" or "monk's pepper" [[1]], whereas in Persian it is glossed as Quinquefolium and "cinquefoil", i.e. some species of the Potentilla genus, but often identified with Potentilla reptans L. "creeping cinquefoil" [[2]], [[3]].

See also: Agnus castus, Femequestum

WilfGunther 05/12/13

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