R A Brown writes:
> Henrik Theiling wrote:
> > Hi!
> > R A Brown writes:
> [snip]
> >>Typical? Doesn't it rather depend upon whether a language forms
> >>head+attribute or attribute+head compounds?
> >>...
> >  By writing 'man-wolf', I meant 'man' modifying 'wolf' in whatever
> > order the particular language implements this.
> Right - I think saying 'order' in your original statement misled me.

Yeah, it was at least ambiguous.  Sorry!

> Yep - even the versions I gave with 'wolf' first support the point
> that 'wolf' is the head of the phrase and the 'man/human' word is the
> attribute. It does seem that people regarded these creatures as
> essentially wolves trapped for the most part in humanoid form, rather
> than humans who occasionally got transmogrified into wolves.

Would you happen to know until when the term 'versipellis' was know to
Romans or whether it was a Vulgar Latin word at all?  The dictionaries
say it is used by Plautus, but I have no clue how much it is used by
ordinary people, too, and how long.  Did it leave any trace in modern

Elliot asked for the word and before that, I assumed Latin had none so
I compounded 'man-worf' in Ţrjótrunn.  But if it is used in Vulgar
Latin, I'd probably introduce at least a formal or ancient word, if
not a normal word, for 'werewolf' since the sound shifts are nice:
Versipellis > 'yspill' or maybe 'yrpill' (with a little consonant
cluster simplification).  With another syncope in most cases,
e.g. 'ysplir' or 'yrplir'.