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   The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition.  2000.
 

Appendix I

Indo-European Roots
 
ENTRY:gembh-
DEFINITION:Tooth, nail. Oldest form *embh-, becoming *gembh- in centum languages.
Derivatives include comb, unkempt, and gem.
1. Suffixed o-grade form *gombh-o-. a. (i) comb, kame, from Old English comb, camb, comb; (ii) cam, from Dutch kam, cog, comb; (iii) unkempt, from Old English cemban, to comb, from Germanic denominative *kambjan, to comb. (i)–(iii) all from Germanic *kambaz, comb; b. gomphosis, from Greek gomphos, tooth, peg, bolt. 2. Suffixed zero-grade form *gbh-n-. oakum, from Old English -cumba, part of flax separated in hackling, oakum (“stuff combed off”; -, away, off). 3. Perhaps Germanic *kimb-. chime2, from Old English cim-, cimb-, rim (only in compounds), 4. Possibly suffixed form *gembh-m-. gem, gemma, gemmate, gemmule, from Latin gemma, bud, hence gem. (Pokorny embh- 369.)
 
 
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by the Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

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