adj., n.

'bondmen, serfs' (Modern English )


Late OE bōnda 'householder' is best explained as a borrowing of an ON n., cp. OIcel bóndi 'farmer, householder', derived on the pres. ptcp. of búa 'to live, abide, dwell' (< PGmc *ƀōw(w)an-, cp. Go bauan, OE, OS būan, OFris buwa, bowa, and see further under boun). For a full discussion see SPS 106-7.

PGmc Ancestor

Proposed ON Etymon (OIcel representative)

bóndi 'farmer, householder'
(ONP bóndi (sb.))

Other Scandinavian Reflexes

Far bóndi, Icel bóndi, Norw bonde, Dan bonde, Sw bonde

OE Cognate

cp. OE būan 'to stay, dwell, live'

Phonological and morphological markers

Summary category



Attested in OE from the 11c. and then in a range of ME texts; the term underwent semantic pejoration in ME (SPS 107, 209-10).

Occurrences in the Gersum Corpus

Cl 88

GollCl and Anderson interpret the instance at Cl 88 as an adj. (cp. MED's bonde n.2 and adj.).


MED bō̆nd(e (n.1) , OED bond (n.2 and adj.) , MED bō̆nd(e (n.2 and adj.) , OED bond (n.2 and adj.) , HTOED , HTOED , Bj. 205, SPS 106-7, 209-10, de Vries bóndi, Mag. bóndi, Orel *ƀōw(w)anan, Kroonen *bōan- ~ *būan, Seebold Bōww-a-, DOE bōnda, AEW bōnda