(Modern English )


Old Norse, cp. the OIcel n. kampr 'beard, moustache' (apparently < a PGmc stem without a suffix causing i-mutation, cp. OFris canep) evidently lies behind a rare English adj. (and sb. forms that develop from it): ME camp (OED n.4) and campe (attested only here), next to kemp (OED n.2, MED s.v. kempe (adj.)), first attested in the late 14c. Spellings indicating i-mutation may suggest separate derivation from the native OE by-form (or input from it) for those forms (< PGmc *kanipaz, cp. OE cenep, OFris kenep).

PGmc Ancestor


Proposed ON Etymon (OIcel representative)

kampr 'beard, moustache'
(ONP kampr (sb.))

Other Scandinavian Reflexes

Far kampur, Icel kampur, Norw kamp

OE Cognate

cenep 'moustache, whiskers'

Phonological and morphological markers

Summary category



This is the unique instance of an adj. <campe>; MED cites a single instance of an adj. <kempe> (see etymological discussion) used by Chaucer to describe coarse shaggy hair (Anderson 1695n and McGee 399 repeat the comparison made by Emerson (1919: 518-19), observing that the same collocation with hores occurs) and then in two other instances with more specific reference to eels.

Occurrences in the Gersum Corpus

Cl 1695


MED camp (adj.) , de Vries kampur, Mag. kampur, Orel *kan(i)paz, DOE cenep, AEW cenep