Definition of Grimm's law
: a statement in historical linguistics: Proto-Indo-European voiceless stops became Proto-Germanic voiceless fricatives (as in Greek pyr, treis, kardia compared with English fire, three, heart), Proto-Indo-European voiced stops became Proto-Germanic voiceless stops (as in Latin duo, genus compared with English two, kin), and Proto-Indo-European voiced aspirated stops became Proto-Germanic voiced fricatives (as in Sanskrit nābhi, madhya "mid" compared with English navel, Old Norse mithr "mid")
Keep scrolling for more
Love words? Need even more definitions?Merriam-Webster unabridged
Words at Play
- The Parts of the Fruit: Seed, Pericarp, and More
- The Trick to Choosing 'Pawn Off' or 'Palm Off'
- The Good, The Bad, & The Semantically Imprecise - 9/13/19
- A Guide to Using Colons
Ask the Editors
- On Contractions of Multiple Words
- A Look at Uncommon Onomatopoeia
- Is Singular 'They' a Better Choice?