v. (wk.)

Gaw past sg. atled; Cl pp. attled; WA pres. 1 sg. etill, ettillis, pres. 2 sg. etils, pres. 3 sg. etils, pres. ptcp. attelland, past sg. attellyd, etill, past pl. ettild, pp. ettild

'to intend; prepare; address'

(Modern English ettle)


cp. OIcel ætla ‘to think, intend’ < PGmc *ahtilō(j)an- with assimilation of /x/; cp. the related OE eahtian, OFris achtia, OS, OHG ahtōn, without *-il suffix. 

PGmc Ancestor


Proposed ON Etymon (OIcel representative)

ætla 'to think,  intend' 
(ONP ætla (vb.))

Other Scandinavian Reflexes

Far, Icel ætla, Norw etla, atla, Sw dial ättla, ässla

OE Cognate

eahtian, 'to estimate', 'consult about', 'consider'

Phonological and morphological markers

ON consonant cluster assimilation

Summary category



Recorded from the SWM and SEM in early ME, but thereafter predominantly a N/EM word especially used by alliterative poets; MnE dial Sc., Irel. and north of Lan.

Occurrences in the Gersum Corpus

Gaw 27, 2263; Cl 207; WA 15, 1157, 1819, etc.

At WA 2419, MS D reads <attellyd> and MS A reads <etill>.The A MS of WA reads adill þaim a mede at 3191 (see adill (v.)), where D reads attelland a mede. TPD  (3319n) allow that the A MS reading 'could be correct', but note that the sense 'expecting' is otherwise unrecored for attle and argue instead that reading in D instead came about as an attempt to avoid the rare adill (v.).


MED atlen (v.) , OED (v.) ettle , HTOED , EDD ettle (v.1) Dance attle, Bj. 173-4, de Vries ætla, Mag. ætla, Kroonen *ahtō-, AEW eahtian