Posted 25 March 2006 - 04:59 PM
Posted 25 March 2006 - 09:10 PM
Posted 25 March 2006 - 09:13 PM
Posted 26 March 2006 - 04:06 AM
Posted 26 March 2006 - 04:45 AM
I'd like to add to this question, is there any truth to the "stories" I've heard that a daggar is called "mpitzak or bitzak"? I was told that my last name "Pitsakis" which used to be "Mpitsakis (Bitsakis)" before removal of the Mi means knife or daggar maker. I was also told that there is a place where you can find many shops with the name Pitsakis and where they sell daggars, among others things I suppose. Thanks.
There is (or was) an area in Iraklion where they made and sold Cretan knives, which was called “Mpitsaxidika” which most likely is made up of the word “Mpitsak”or similar and “–idika” indicating an area where you find such items. There is a similar named area in Rethymnos. Unfortunately I could not locate the word “Mpitsak”or similar amongst the limited Cretan words reference material that I have. May be somebody else with access to a full Cretan word dictionary could assist.
Posted 26 March 2006 - 11:54 AM
All these must have a common root with the turkish word 'bitsak' which indeed means knife, according to the Dictionary of the Dialect of Eastern Crete by Manolis Pittikakis. Pittikakis also mentions the word 'mpitsaxis' which comes from bitsak and it means, the man who makes knives. This is why there used to be an area in Heraklion called 'Mpitsaxidika' as Yorgos mentions.
I did more research and it looks like the origin of all above words is the ancient greek verb 'pignimi' (πήγνυμι), which means 'nail' (verb) or 'construct'.
Read all about the Cretan Dagger here: http://www.explorecr...etan-dagger.htm
Posted 26 March 2006 - 02:36 PM
You can enter and have a look how they are made.
????????· ?????·?½ ???±??????¬ ??????
Posted 26 March 2006 - 09:31 PM
Posted 29 March 2006 - 09:02 AM
I finally discovered that in western Crete the Cretan knife is also known as “basalis”, in Greek «μπασαλής», most probably having the same derivation from the Turkish “bitsak” as you mentioned a couple of days ago!
Etymology is indeed a fascinating subject!