From Simon Online
Jump to: navigation, search

Catapodia grece papias: dicta eo quod modica potetur vel inglutinatur et est pillula in libris de greco translatis sepe reperitur aliquando catapucia aliquando catapotia.


Catapodia | Catapedia f
eo om. B efjp
modica | modice f
potetur AC p | putetur B ef | putet~ j {with "o" written above "u"}
inglutiatur ABC ep | ingluciat~ fj
pillula j | pill’a AB efp | pillam C
libris | lio f
translatis | translato f
aliquando om. f
catapucia AC f | -putia B jp | -pocia e
aliquando catapotia om. ef


Catapodia is a Greek word and according to Papias it is so named because only small bits are drunk {see Commentary} or swallowed down, and in Latin it is pillula {"pill"}. It is often found in books translated from Greek, sometimes written catapucia, sometimes catapotia.


Simon names Papias as his source for this entry [[1]], [[2]]. However Papias took over this quote from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiae book IV chapter ix § 9 [[3]] which reads: Catapotia, eo quod modicum potetur, seu inglutiatur - "It is called catapotia because only a small measure is drunk {poto meaning 'to drink' in Latin} or swallowed down". Typically Isidore’s etymology is derived on the basis of some – often tenuous - semantic link coupled with phonetic similarity, i.e. he relates - rightly as it happens - Greek –potia to Latin poto "to drink".

Greek καταπóτιον /katapótion/, which means "something to be swallowed", is the diminutive of κατάποτον /katápoton/ "pill, bolus", ultimately < καταπίνω /katapínō/ "to gulp, swallow down of liquids and solids", ποτός /potós/ being the verbal adjective. The word was adopted into Latin as cataputium.
The plural of cataputium, i.e. cataputia, is often treated as a feminine singular noun rather than as the neuter plural that it is, seen etymologically.

Papias’s and therefore Simon’s form catapodia shows intervocalic voicing, indicative of influence by Northern Italian dialects or the western Romania, cf. Grandgent (1907: 121), § 286: "Intervocalic t was voiced to d in Spain, Gaul, Raetia and northern Italy probably in the fifth or sixth century … Inscriptions show a few such forms as amadus …". It may be of interest to note in this context that Papias is the 11th c. Latin lexicographer from Italy, often referred to as 'Papias the Lombard', who is thought to be the first modern lexicographer composing a monolingual Latin – Latin dictionary, the Elementarium Doctrinae Rudimentum [[4]], [[5]].

WilfGunther 11:16, 15 June 2015 (BST)

See also: Kataputia (1), Pillula

Next entry