The Riddle of the 'sp(h)ij-': The Greek Sphinx and Her Indic and Indo-European Background

  title={The Riddle of the 'sp(h)ij-': The Greek Sphinx and Her Indic and Indo-European Background},
  author={J. Katz},
The name of the Sphinx, the Greek female monster who had fun killing passers-by who could not answer her riddle, has long been an etymological conundrum. On the basis of literary, linguistic, and anthropological evidence from, above all, Greece and India, this paper comes to a novel understanding of the Sphinx' origin, concluding that her oldest moniker, (S)F∞k-, is related to a newly uncovered Greek noun f€ki° 'buttocks' and to a Sanskrit word for the same body part, sphij-, a hitherto… Expand
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