English translation (word)
English translation (etymon)
Ἔπαλξις: […] ἀπὸ τοῦ ἀλεξῶ ῥήματος περισπωμένου· τοῦτο παρὰ τὸ ἀλέγω ἀλέξω, καὶ μετάγεται ὁ μέλλων εἰς ἐνεστῶτα μετὰ περισπωμένου τόνου καὶ γίνεται ἀλεξῶ
Epalxis "defense": […] from alexô "I ward off", which is a verb with circumflex tone. The latter is from alegō "I care for", hence alexō, and the future tense is transposed into a present tense with a circumflex tone and becomes alexô
This etymology relies on the phonetic similarity between two verbs, and understands implicitly the derived form (ἀλέξω) as the consequence of the base form (ἀλέγω): one defends those for whom one cares. There is an interesting point here in grammatical theory, with the indication that the word is morphologically a future, and that this future came to be used as a present: the case of εἶμι, present used as a future in Attic, may have provided a model for this tense switch. This goes supposedly with a change of accent: a contract ἀλεξῶ would be of the Doric type (the form is not contract in Attic).
Etym. Magnum, Kallierges, p. 59 (Μεθόδιος. Παρὰ τὸ ἀλέγω ἀλέξω· καὶ μετάγεται ὁ μέλλων εἰς ἐνεστῶτα); Etym. Gudianum Additamenta, alpha, p. 84 (ἐκ τοῦ ἀλέγω, τὸ βοηθῶ· ἀλεξήσω ὁ μέλλων); Eustathius, Comm. Od. 2, 186 (ἀπὸ τοῦ ἀλεξῶ ῥήματος περισπωμένου· τοῦτο παρὰ τὸ ἀλέγω, ἀλέξω, καὶ μετάγεται ὁ μέλλων εἰς ἐνεστῶτα μετὰ περισπωμένου τόνου καὶ γίνεται ἀλεξῶ); Lexicon αἱμωδεῖν, epsilon 27 (idem).