Do the English words 'rod' and 'reed' have a connection, given the fact that they have a semantic similarity?
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The words rod and reed look less similar when their earlier ancestors are compared.
Rod has no cognate in other West Germanic languages (German, Dutch), but Old English rodd may have descended from Old Norse rudda, ‘club’.
Reed, however, comes from Old English hreod from a Germanic root that also yielded Old Saxon hraid, Old Frisian hriad, Middle Dutch riet, Low German Reet, Old High German hriot, High German Ried, all meaning a tall, broad-leafed marshgrass.