Questions tagged [roots]

For questions about linguistic roots (e.g., reconstructed roots for proto-languages or roots for paragigms in inflected languages like Latin)

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Why is feeling and hearing are the same in Italian?

Sentire means hearing, and at the same time feeling, in Italian and it's used passively in both senses. Mi sento male - I feel bad Ho sentito il tuo nome - I heard your name Why among all senses ...
1 vote
3 answers
119 views

Can we claim that all words derived from the same root must necessarily be related in the meaning?

In many languages that I know morphology plays a role in creating words. And, as much as I know, in morphology we have a root, which is the most important part. Now, in seimitic languages (like Arabic,...
7 votes
2 answers
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Finding the root of an Aramaic or Hebrew word

I'm trying to make a dictionary on the web where people can automatically look up words in a text they're reading online. While I have the words and their definitions, the problem is that many times ...
25 votes
2 answers
4k views

Why do languages not share a root for "butterfly"?

In the article The Elusive Butterfly. Iconicity in Language (2001), William O. Beeman draws attention to the fact that most languages do not share a root for their word for butterfly. In other words, ...
0 votes
1 answer
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Is there a root final stop in English?

Is there a root final stop in English? I can't seem to find any
-3 votes
1 answer
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Does the root word mus- in Latin mean "thief"'? Mouse=thief, Moses=Extractor etc

I first got the idea of Latin mus- = mouse = thief from this list My primary question here is whether someone can confirm this, because I have not found any direct words in Latin that indicates that ...
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

The classification of morphemes

I have seen conflicting charts and models of morphemes. Here's how I understand it. Free morphemes do not require other morphemes to make sense. That means that all free morphemes are words. Content ...
0 votes
2 answers
501 views

What is the root of an utterance without a verb?

Dependency grammars treat the main verb of a sentence as the root node of a dependency graph. Not all utterances, however, have verbs. (Example: the widely known exclamation "holy shit!") In these ...
1 vote
0 answers
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What is the etymological difference bewteen ب ر ك and ص ل و‎ roots?

The roots ب ر ك (BRK) and ص ل و‎ (ṢLW) shares a common meaning related to the act of blessing. Is the first one related to the knees, while the later one is rather connected to the notion of eulogy? (...
3 votes
3 answers
121 views

Roots categorization

I'm computationally working on an agglutinative language, a morphological analyser. The thing is that roots can form verbs (not all) but some roots like lüg 'white' is classified as Adjective if it is ...
5 votes
1 answer
340 views

Is the Ethiopian word "falash[a]" related to the words Philistine or Palestine?

I apologize I don't know how to read Amharic or Ge'ez well (at all) [I am most certainly only an amateur at linguistics], and my Hebrew and Arabic are also poor. But I can't help but wonder if the the ...
6 votes
1 answer
253 views

Can Semitic (Hebrew & Arabic) roots have vowels?

To the best of my knowledge, roots in Semitic, both Arabic & Hebrew, do not contain vowels. They are purely consonantal at the base. I read this a couple of years ago about Hebrew in Levin & ...
13 votes
5 answers
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What is the difference between a word root and a word stem?

What is the difference between a word's root and a word's stem?
2 votes
1 answer
192 views

Hebrew root אהב

I'm a complete novice in Hebrew, sorry if my question is nonsense. I wrote down two words: אוהב and אהבה - "to love" (a verb) and "love" (a noun). So, I wondered what the roots are. Assuming there ...
2 votes
1 answer
102 views

What is the Protosemitic root for asher?

What is the protosemitic root for asher(אשר) in: ehyeh asher ehyeh אהיה אשר אהיה from Exodus 3:14 Note: I'm not sure but I'm guessing it's probably either ʔṯr, ʔšr, or ʔśr.
7 votes
3 answers
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Etymology of some Romance languages' verbs meaning "to sleep"

Portuguese, Spanish and French dormir, Italian dormire etc. come from the Latin verb dormīo. Wiktionary's entry says that its etymology is: From Latin dormīre, present active infinitive of dormiō, ...
9 votes
1 answer
527 views

How do I gloss a Semitic verb?

"Standard" glossing (following the Leipzig rules) uses a linear model of breaking down words into morphemes. In other words, it assumes you can draw lines between all the morphemes to separate them. ...
1 vote
1 answer
834 views

Why were there two words for love in Proto-Indo-European?

I did some research on the root of the English word 'love' and the French word 'amour' to attempt to find the roots of them. The farthest I can find back is two Proto-Indo-European words, "Lewb" ...
11 votes
2 answers
543 views

How can I check whether 'question' in English, and 'xahesh' in Persian are cognates?

It seems plausible to me, and I would like to know how to verify it. Why I think xahesh might be cognate with question: xahesh (IPA: /xɑːheʃ/) in Modern Persian is a noun meaning "request, plea". ...
2 votes
1 answer
106 views

Derivation of Greek οὐρά (backside) from PIE *h₁ers (flow)

I'm trying to understand how the Greek word for backside/rear could be derived from the PIE word for 'to flow'. There is a Sanskrit word arsati which means 'to pierce', so the meaning of the PIE root ...
0 votes
1 answer
71 views

By what means would the root "let" evolve to "ly" in a naturalistic conlang?

I apologize for how this question may be perceived. I am casually learning linguistics with no curriculum. I can understand that this question may have many possible answers, but I am not quite sure ...
1 vote
2 answers
179 views

Are the English "Woe" and the German "Wo" related?

Is the English "Woe" and the German "Wo" related? I just heard a colleague say, "Wo ist mein ..." and I thought of the band Woe is me. Are these words just false cognates... or is there some common ...
4 votes
2 answers
355 views

PIE *kom 'with, side by side' or PIE *ḱóm?

wiktionary: Proto-Indo-European/ḱóm - Etymology Perhaps from *ḱe. Adverb *ḱóm beside, near, by, with AHD-IER: kom Beside, near, by, with Is the initial consonant a plain k or not?
3 votes
1 answer
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Is it possible for two Semitic (e.g. Arabic, Hebrew) words with the same triliteral root to have different origins?

Learning Arabic, I see some examples of triliteral roots from which words with apparently different meanings are derived. Example: ف ط ر (f-ṭ-r) "to break apart or tear": فَطَرَ • (faṭara) (maybe ...
9 votes
4 answers
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Why are the reconstructed forms of PIE root in Etymonline and Wiktionary different?

I found PIE roots described in Etymonline (or American Heritage Dictionary) and Wiktionary are quite different. For examples: agō: *ag- (Etymonline), *h₂eǵ- (Wiktionary) laxō: *sleg- (...
3 votes
1 answer
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Can these new etymological pairs of PIE roots be true?

I find a paper containing new lists of cognates on PIE root level, and don't know such phenomena or rules are convincing or not, the list follows below: 1. The voiceless stop vs. voiced aspirated ...
4 votes
1 answer
3k views

difference between the root, lemma and stem for a derived word

I am a bit confused with the usage of the terms root, lemma and stem. My understanding of the terms are as follows. Root:The central (free) morpheme which has the content to which other bound ...
2 votes
2 answers
236 views

Common language root for dom, domain

Earlier today I was wondering about the similarity of domain (eng), domaine (fr) and the words for home or house dom (rus), dům (cz) makes me think they have some common root, is that true? If so, ...
3 votes
3 answers
557 views

Are the cognates of PIE roots in this paper reliable?

I came across a long paper with many cognates of PIE roots, some examples: *weid- "to see" and *sueid- "to shine" < *weid-es-weid-, *h₂ǵ- "to drive" and *sh₂ǵ- "to seek" < *h₂ǵ-es-h₂ǵ-, where *...
1 vote
1 answer
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average root length cross-linguistically

A colleague of mine made a claim that the phonemic length of the root morphemes in whatever language does not usually exceed 5, as an average. I have some doubts about this unsubstantiated claim, ...
1 vote
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Are there dictionaries translating roots from one Indo-European language to another?

Are there dictionaries translating roots from one Indo-European language (family) to another? Such dictionaries would be helpful for translating calques like выставка, Ausstellung, and exhibition. ...
5 votes
2 answers
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Origin of the word/root 'del'

As I was contemplating the Norwegian word "del," which means "part" or "portion," it occurred to me that there is the same root in Russian, and that it means the same thing. I looked up "del" and "...
3 votes
1 answer
210 views

Are PIE *bʰewg- "flee" and PIE *bʰegʷ- "flee" cognate?

These two verbal roots *bʰewg- "flee" and *bʰegʷ- "flee" share the same meaning and very similar forms, the only difference is their ending consonant. I wonder whether they are from a same root or ...
3 votes
1 answer
185 views

Semitic (Afroasiatic?) Root Constraints

What is known about the phonological constraints limiting the form of a Semitic (or even Afroasiatic) root? In other words, are there any limits to the possible sequences of radicals? For example, ...
9 votes
2 answers
481 views

Understanding the reflexes of PIE *ǵneh3- in Sanskrit, Latin and Greek

Today I was trying to reconstruct some PIE roots by myself and I came across the word for '(to) know' in different indo-european languages. Here are some examples: Eng. (to) know It. conoscere Lat. (...
16 votes
4 answers
3k views

Are there languages in which "coffee" is not a cognate of a root containing k/q and f/h/w?

Is there a language, in which the word for "coffee" does not contain the sounds k/q and f/h/v, i.e. the word has a different root?
4 votes
2 answers
263 views

What is the etymology of "adventus?" [closed]

What is the complete root etymology of the Latin word "adventus?"
2 votes
2 answers
751 views

Learning Arabic through roots

I am currently trying to learn Arabic but think that instead of learning vocabulary piece by piece, it would be better to learn the root consonants for nouns, adjectives and verbs and rules for vowels ...
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How many bases does a compound word have?

How many bases does the word girlfriends have? Let's take this word apart. girl -- root friend -- root s -- affix that denotes plural form Base may be identical with the word root but can also be ...
1 vote
1 answer
2k 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?
7 votes
2 answers
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Why can verbal roots in PIE only contain the vowel e?

Verbal roots of PIE are generally reconstructed as (C5) (C3) C1 e C2 (C4) (C6); with certain phonetical restrictions, especially on the outmost consonants. I wonder why only "e" should be allowed as ...
1 vote
2 answers
282 views

Head word for Synonyms and Word Families?

::UPDATED:: Dictionaries will often present a single word, and then inflected/derived relational forms (such as "house", and then provide listings for "houses", "housed" and "housing"). I'm looking ...
7 votes
5 answers
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Is Esperanto accepting new root words?

Is Esperanto accepting new root words? Or is this process done and you can create new words only by combining existing ones?
19 votes
1 answer
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What is the relationship between the PIE roots *dekṃ and *kṃtóm?

It seems that there is a consensus that the PIE roots for ten and hundred are, respectively, *deḱṃ and *ḱṃtóm. There also seems to be a consensus that *ḱṃtóm is a shortened version of *deḱṃtóm. These ...
2 votes
0 answers
207 views

Is PIE "*wank-" the ultimate root of E "wankle"?

wankle From Middle English wankel, from Old English wancol (“unstable, unsteady, tottering, vacillating, weak”), from Proto-Germanic *wankulaz (“unsteady, wavering”), from Proto-Indo-European *...