Venutio

AttestedVenutio at position 182 in the Ravenna Cosmography

Where:  Near Peebles in the Scottish borders, where there was a Roman fort at Hallyne NT18784056, some nearby marching camps at Lyne NT203408, another fort across the river at Easter Happrew, plus a native hillfort on Hamildean Hill.

Name Origin:  An element *ven- often suggests a meaning of ‘family, kindred’, from PIE *wen- ‘to love’, as Rivet & Smith spelled out on p491 while discussing the people called Ουενικονες, but it is not obvious how that would apply here in such a strongly Roman context.  Maybe one should think of the goddess Venus and a religious site, or of Latin venio ‘to come’ and a transport hub.  Probably the best etymology comes from Latin venus ‘sale’, which readily compounded so that vendo ‘give for sale’ came from venum+do and veneo ‘go on sale’ came from venum+eo.  So perhaps *venutium was a collective noun from venus, in other words a market.  Best of all, maybe *ven- is just the ancient word for (grape)vine, here applied to a bendy river, which would suit the location, with a banal Latin noun ending -utio.

Notes:  Tacitus mentioned a king of the Brigantes called Venutius, estranged from his wife Cartimandua.

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Last edited 6 September 2021     to main Menu