Branch of the Indo-European languages from Northern Europe, including English, German, Dutch, and the Scandinavian languages

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55 views

Spelling Similarities in English and Spanish but not in Italian and Spanish

The spelling of the word 'admit' has a ⟨d⟩ in both English and the Spanish equivalent, admitir, but not in Italian ammettere. Why is the ⟨d⟩ absent in the Italian equivalent?
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1answer
49 views

Why is “och” (and) not spelled “og” in Swedish?

For example, here is the word for "I" in the Old Norse dialects. Old East Norse = Jak Old West Norse = Ek These words became, with a natural evolution, the following: Icelandic = Ég Faroese = Eg ...
3
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1answer
78 views

What languages are writer-responsible?

It seems like every scholar since Hinds has only mentioned English as a writer-responsible language, which is also used to contrast reader-responsible languages (that are usually identified as Asian ...
22
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6answers
5k views

Why does English not have a version of (Swedish: heter, Icelandic: heiti, Spanish: llamo etc.)?

This is something that I think is present in most languages. If I were to present my self in English, I might say: My name is DisplayName. Where as in other languages I can both say: Mitt ...
1
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2answers
86 views

Is there any characteristic that is unique to North Germanic languages?

Is there any characteristic that is unique to the North Germanic languages (Swedish, Danish, Norweigan, Faroese, Icelandic) and the dead ones (such as Old West Norse, Old East Norse, Norn, ...
1
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1answer
89 views

How many of English words have Germanic roots, and how many have Romantic roots? (in percent)

So, I'm wondering how much of English words have Germanic roots, how many have Romantic roots and how many have Greek roots etc. In percent. Is there any such table?
5
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5answers
178 views

How did the same perfect-tense structure become so widespread in Europe?

In many Germanic and Romance languages, the perfect tense is formed with the verb 'to have' or 'to be' plus a past participle. It's easy to find explanations ["I have an arrow (which is) made (by ...
2
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1answer
70 views

Present Subjunctive as Optative

In many European languages - at least those I looked into - it is possible to use Present Subjunctive as optative mood (although often considered dated or of limited availability): Thy Kingdom ...
2
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2answers
300 views

German long “o” vs. “au”. Is there a rule?

There are common words in Germanic languages that have a long "o" vowel in the stem, and which in modern German seem to be either "o" or "au" randomly. Examples: Dutch ROOD, Swedish RÖD, German ROT ...
2
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1answer
84 views

Why is “speak” a class 4 strong verb?

I've been trying to understand the how strong verbs in Germanic languages work, and reading the Wikipedia article I understand that class 4 strong verbs originated from, in PIE, vowel + a sonorant (m, ...
3
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3answers
97 views

What is the word class of the first part of a partitive genitive?

I'm trying to determine the part of speech in the following example: German: Mario Götze ist einer der besten Fußballspieler der Welt. (partitive genitive) English: Mario Götze is one of the ...
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0answers
72 views

Do Germanic languages have partitive case?

Finnish, among a few other languages, is known for its partitive case. I have been told that in some Germanic language, partitive case is required whenever SV-order is absent. SV-order is absent, ...
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0answers
38 views

Definite or indefinite adjectives with possessive personal determiners in Germanic?

While both German and Danish have different forms of adjectives in definite and indefinite noun phrases, noun phrases with possessive personal determiners pattern with the indefinite noun phrases in ...
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9answers
8k views

Why is English classified as a Germanic rather than Romance language?

I am not a linguist. I do not know German nor French. The majority of English vocabulary is derived from Romance languages. Given these facts, I ask for a simple and convincing demonstration (using an ...
2
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1answer
117 views

What's the relation between Germanic suffixes -ly, -lich, -lijk, … and Turkic suffixes -lik -liq

What's the relation between Germanic adjectival/adverbial suffixes -ly, -lich, -lijk, ... and Turkic suffixes -lik -liq that convert nouns/adjectives to nouns
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2answers
167 views

Etymology: Arabic falaha, German pflügen, English to plough

Could there be some connection between Arabic falaha meaning to till the soil and German pflügen, Pflug or English plough, to plough?
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2answers
126 views

Germanic comparative grammars?

Can anyone recommend a good comparative grammar of the Germanic languages -- or, failing that, good historical grammars specifically for Old English and Old Norse? Ideally, what I want is a ...
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0answers
91 views

Why does the pronunciation of Germanic languages before vowel shift seems to have been more “Indo-European”?

I think the vowels have become "harsher" during the vowel shift and has made them sound very different from Latin, Greek, Sanskrit,... which generally use "soft" vowels. Can we deduce that the vowel ...
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0answers
55 views

Tabulated lists of examples

"Everybody [?] knows" that there are these pairs of corresponding words in German and English in which an "f" appears in German where a "p" appears in English: Bischoff, bishop Schiff, ship ...
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1answer
333 views

My otherwise monogamous friends came to the party with their wives

Romance languages (French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese) tend to say that "My friends came with their wife, who were all blowing their nose." (no polygamy, a cold epidemic but no monstrosity either), ...
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1answer
158 views

Linguistic relation Turkish dada English dad

Both are informal words meaning father. It is interesting that I couldn't find a similar word in other Germanic and Latin languages. It looks that this word has directly migrated from central asia to ...
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3answers
996 views

Why does English sound so cold to a Slavic speaker?

When you compare English with e.g .Russian or some other Slavic language, English sounds very cold and not warming at all. Could it be explained scientifically? Compare this in Russian: ...
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1answer
532 views

Is there a named common ancestor of Germanic and Latin besides “Indo-European”?

I was just answering a question about the origins of English and Latin and wanted to talk about their common ancestors but ran into a surprising problem. So we know the majority of languages in ...
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2answers
220 views

The reason for similarity of Turkic “min” and latin “mille”, Turkic “dil” and dutch “taal”?

What's the linguistic relation between the Turkic words bin or min and Latin word mille meaning thousand Turkic dil and dutch taal meaninge language?
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2answers
374 views

What is the relative chronology of Grimm's and Verner's Law?

I'm trying to understand the relative chronology of Grimm's Law and Verner's Law. I understand that there are different views, and that it is not easy to work out. I believe Ringe argues that the ...
2
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2answers
147 views

The “close front rounded vowel” mainly used in Germanic, Altaic and far Asian languages

Why is the "close front rounded vowel" /y/ mainly used in Germanic, Altaic and far Asian languages but rare in Latin*, Indo-Iranian and Slavic languages? Can we say that Germanic phonetics is less ...
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2answers
162 views

Lingustic relationship between plural suffixes in Turkish and -er in some Nordic/Germanic languages

What's the linguistic relationship between plural suffixes "-ler/-lar" in Turkish and "-er" in some Nordic/Germanic languages?
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0answers
136 views

Do all languages with pre-positional articles have zero-articles if they don't have post-positional articles?

To clarify, pre-positional articles are the articles positioned before a noun they refer to, like English the or a(n). Post-positional articles are those positioned after a noun they refer to, like ...
7
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1answer
310 views

Origin of current order pattern in English/German

It is well-known, or better said, well-accepted, that the ancestral language Proto-Indo-European (PIE) was a OV language with a very limited (or nonexistent) use of subordinate clauses. In ...
5
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1answer
327 views

History of the verb positioning in German

In German, the word order is SVO (or V2, to be precise) in main clauses, while in subordinate clauses have the finite verb in final position; there is some discussion of the word order in "German is ...
4
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3answers
235 views

Explaining the relationship between “short”, “kurz” and “curzu”

I've recently noticed something that I can't explain, a link between German and Sardinian. Two languages that, at least apparently for me, are not supposed to be that linked. Also English is included ...
5
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1answer
237 views

Word order typology in Germanic

I am not a native speaker of English, but I study English and Dutch. I have noticed that the two languages differ in their degree of flexibility. The following sentence, for example, is not acceptable ...
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2answers
363 views

How does the word “thunder” get the letter “d”?

thunder O.E. þunor, from P.Gmc. thunraz (cf. O.N. þorr, O.Fris. thuner, M.Du. donre, Du. donder, O.H.G. donar, Ger. Donner "thunder"), from PIE (s)tene- "to resound, thunder" (cf. Skt. tanayitnuh ...
4
votes
2answers
375 views

Why does the Old Norse word “maðr” include “ð”, while its cognate E “man” doesn't?

maðr From Proto-Germanic *mann-, whence also Old English mann, Old High German man. mann- Descendants Old English: mann, man; manna English: man Old Frisian: man, mon West Frisian: ...
4
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2answers
272 views

How does the Icelandic word “finna” come from Proto-Germanic “finþanan”?

finna From Old Norse finna, from Proto-Germanic *finþanan. finþanan From Proto-Indo-European *pent-, *penth- (“to go, pass; path, bridge”). Cognate with Latin pons (“bridge”), Old Indian ...
11
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3answers
7k views

The Origin of the Word 'God'

I originally posted this a while ago on my blog, but someone recently suggested that I pose it as a question here. A brief Wikipedia search on the origin of the word ‘god’ reveals the following: ...
3
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2answers
519 views

How can I distinguish Dutch from Flemish from Afrikaans at a glance?

I don't know Dutch, Flemish, or Afrikaans, but will sometimes, on coming across a writing sample of one of them, wish to know which it is. How do I distinguish them in their written forms?
5
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1answer
243 views

How can I distinguish modern Scandinavian languages at a glance?

I don't know Danish, Nynorsk, or Bokmål, but will sometimes, on coming across a writing sample of one of them, wish to know which it is. How do I distinguish them in their written forms? (I'd include ...
5
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1answer
244 views

Is there a grammatical construction found in one Germanic language that isn't found in other Germanic languages?

If I recall correctly, Portuguese is unique among Romance languages for having infinitives that take pronoun clitics and so form equivalents to English constructions such as "for you to (do X)" or ...
11
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1answer
809 views

About the Swedish /ɧ/

Swedish has quite a peculiarity that I haven't found (yet) in other languages. There are some spellings that are pronounced all the same way. Currently the number of these spellings is disputed, but ...