Mystery Monday: Two names with Rece-

Every Monday we will post an entry that hasn’t yet been published with a view towards harnessing the collective onomastic power of the internet. If you have any thoughts about the name’s origin, other variants it might be related to, other examples of its use, etc., please share them in the comments! If you wish to browse other Mystery Monday names, there is an index.

Today we give you not one but two names, because both involve the same prototheme, Rece-. One is from 12th C France, the other from 10th C Spain. Is it the same element in both? Do you know of any other names with this element? Let us know!




Filed under crowd-sourcing, dictionary entries, mystery monday

4 responses to “Mystery Monday: Two names with Rece-

  1. Out of my comfort zone again, but the prototheme made me think of Recceswinth, King of the Visigoths in the mid-7th century (which would be in the right area for one of your examples). Cognate with OE names starting Rīc-?

  2. Yep. A Galician amateur here (CDGH = Colección diplomática de Galicia Histórica).

    I think these names are related to other Germanic names attested in Galicia during the High Middle Ages since the Suevic and Visigothic period, as:
    Rechila (Suevic king of Galicia, 5th century)
    Rechiarius (his son, 5th century)
    Rechimundus (another Suevian, 5th century)
    Rekeritus 951 (Tumbo I Sobrado dos Monxes, 31)
    Rekilo f 969 (Galicia Fondo Antiguo, 80)
    Recebrida ( < *Recefrida) f 960 (Tumbo de Samos, 127)
    Reicionda ( < *Recegunda) f (Tumbo I de Sobrado dos Monxes, 57)
    Recilli ( < *Recildi) f circa 10th century (Tumbo de Celanova, 159)
    Recemirus 818 (Tumbo I de Sobrado dos Monxes, 77)
    Recemera 958 (Tumbo de Samos, 127)
    Recesindus 871 (Tumbo de Celanova, 61)
    Recesinda f 964 (Colección Diplomática de Pombeiro, 2)
    Rezevara/Rezevera f 949 (Tumbo I de Sobrado, 23)
    Recolfu ( < *Reculfu) 922 (Tumbo de Lourenzá, 10)

  3. Brian M. Scott

    The first name is actually cited in Piel & Kremer, Hispano-gotisches Namenbuch, in §219, REC(C)-, REZ- usw.; in addition to the two 954 citations they have Recadrudis 1059 and Recadrugia 1085. They identity the prototheme as a specifically East Gmc. element *rĭk(k)a-, *rĭk(k)i- whose origin is not definitively explained, mentioning Goth. riqis ‘darkness’ and wrikan ‘to persecute (from PGmc. *wrekaną ‘to pursue’) as possible relatives. The deuterotheme is referred to §278, TRU(D). This represents PGmc. *þrūþiz ‘strength’ (OE þrȳð, OS thrūth ‘strength’, ON Þrúðr ‘name of a valkyrie’), and Piel & Kremer assume an unattested Goth. *þrūþ- ‘strength’.

    Joachim Harting, Die Münsterländischen Rufnamen im späten Mittelalter, Niederdeutschen Studien, Band 14, Böhlau Verlag, Köln, 1967, p. 206, has Regewizza 1218, Rechewissa 1312, Reghewissa 1341; considering the geography, this is probably the same name as your Recewissa. He makes the prototheme Rege-, Rem-, Ren-, Rein-, kin to OS regan, regin ‘fate’. (I’m not sure that this OS word is actually independently attested: some sources mention only raginō giskapu ‘divine destiny’.) This is PGmc. *raginan, whose reflexes include Goth. ragin ‘advice, decision’ and the ON plural regin ‘gods’ (presumably originally in their capacity as advisers). On p. 224 he associates the deuterotheme with OHG wizzi ‘knowledge, intelligence, wisdom’, which he says was reinterpreted in this region under the influence of OS wīs ‘wise, knowledgeable’.

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