(Modern English stang)


The ME word seems to represent an ō-stem derivative on PGmc *stang- as in ON, cp. OIcel stǫng (fem.) ‘pole, staff’ (PGmc *stang-ō-, as also in OS stanga, OHG stanga, MDu stange); whereas the nearest native derivative on the *stang- root is OE steng (masc.) ‘stake, pole (etc.)’, an i-stem (PGmc *stang-i-, cp. also OFris stenge). Most authorities derive the ME form from ON without equivocation (so OED, MED, TGD, GDS, etc.), presumably on the grounds of its N distribution, but some (e.g. Bj, noting the WGmc o-stem cognates, and Morris) maintain the likelihood of a native derivation.

PGmc Ancestor


Proposed ON Etymon (OIcel representative)

stǫng ‘pole, staff’
(ONP stǫng (sb.))

Other Scandinavian Reflexes

Far stong, Icel stöng, Norw stong, Dan stang, Sw stång

OE Cognate

cp. steng ‘stake, pole (etc.)’

Phonological and morphological markers

Summary category



Characteristically N in MED’s few citations (inc. a number of place-name forms; see further EPNE). Attested in various MnE dial.

Occurrences in the Gersum Corpus

Gaw 1614


MED stang (n.1) , OED stang (n.1) , HTOED , EDD stang (sb.2 and v.2), Dance stange, Bj. 255, de Vries stǫng, Mag. stöng, Bammesberger 107, 134, Seebold steng-a-, Orel *stanʒō, Kroonen *stangō-, EPNE stǫng