Greek, gyne (a woman); Sanskrit, goni; Swedish, qvenna; Gothic, queins; Anglo-Saxon, cwen. (See Sir.)
“woman,” is equivalent to “mother.” In the translation of the Bible
by Ulfilas (fourth century), we meet with gens
(“wife” and “woman”); and in the Scandinavian languages karl
still mean “man” and “wife.” (See
“He [Jesus] saith unto His mother, Woman, behold thy son.”- St. John
(The White). Mary Queen of Scots; so called because she
dressed in white mourning for her French husband.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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