On the etymology of dialect homonyms: Vologda word kalaushka

2016. № 2 (32), 188-205

Valeria S. Kuchko, Ural Federal University; Russian State Vocational Pedagogical University


The article is devoted to the problem of differentiating dialect homonyms within the group of words with the stem kalaush- / koloush-, most of which have been attested only in several districts of the Vologda region. This lexical group is of broad semantics. It can be divided into blocks of words naming: a winter hat and its sewn-on “ears”; behaviour of a dissolute person; a stupid person; a chatterer and a gossiper; actions causing physical harm; finally, a man fastidious in eating and the action of begging for food. Because of the considerable semantic distance between these blocks and their functioning in different areas (in particular, the meanings ‘hat’, ‘careless / stupid person’ were recorded in the Northeast of Vologda region, and all the “food” meanings — in its Southwest) it is argued that the words in this lexical group are derived from stems of different origin. For units included in the studied group there are at least two etymological solutions: composition of kolo ‘wheel’ or ‘near’ + ushi ‘ears’ with suffixation (which formed the words kalauska / kolouska ‘hat’ and ‘hats with sewn ear’ and their semantic derivatives, as well as the lexemes kalaushnichat’ / koloushnichat’ ‘to gossip’ and kalashnik / koloshnik ‘gossip, liar’) and derivation from the widely recorded words kalaush (koloush) ‘bag’ (resulted in the words koloushit’, koloushnichat’ ‘to beg for food’). In addition, the semantic development within each of the homonymic semantic-derivational series is influenced by attraction of the stem to phonetically similar lexemes.