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FIRST PART A VERB-STEM

880. Some compounds have as their first part a verb-stem (cp. break-water, pick-pocket, catch-penny). Such compounds are usually poetic adjectives. The verb-stem is usually transitive and has the form that appears in the present or aorist.

881. Before a vowel the verb-stem remains unchanged or drops a final vowel; before a consonant it adds ε, ο, or ι: φέρ-ασπις shield-bearing, μι_σ-άνθρωπος man-hating (μι_σέ-ω), ἐκ-ε-χειρία_ (125 d) holding of hands, truce, λιπ-ο-στρατία_ desertion of the army, νι_κ-ό-βουλος prevailing in the Senate, ἀρχ-ι-τέκτων masterbuilder.

882. The verb-stem adds σι (before a vowel, ς). Some insert ε before σι (ς): σω-σί-πολις saving the state (σῴζω), ῥί_ψ-ασπις craven, lit. throwing away a shield (ῥί_π-τ-ω), δηξί-θυ_μος (and δακ-έ-θυ_μος) heart-eating (δάκ-ν-ω), ἑλκ-ε-σίπεπλος with long train, lit. trailing the robe (cp. ἑλκ-ε-χίτων)

a. This ε is the vowel added in many verb-stems (485).

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