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11

It is not Spanish /l/ that "turns into" Italian /i/. It is that the Latin clusters pl-, bl-, fl- became /pj/, /bj/, /fj/ in Italian.


10

These all derive from the original Proto-Indo-European inflections. Compare Classical Latin present-tense verb endings: sg pl 1 amō amāmus 2 amās amātis 3 amat amant And Ancient Greek (Attic, transliterated): sg pl 1 lȳō lȳomen 2 lȳeis lȳete 3 lȳei lȳousin And Modern German: sg pl 1 liebe lieben 2 liebst liebet 3 liebt ...


10

Spanish and Italian are both languages descended from Latin. As such, many of their words are cognate sharing a common Latin ancestor, but the sounds in these words evolved over time and evolved differently in each language. In Spanish, pl-, fl- and cl- generally became ll- (pronounced the same as Italian 'gl'): 6.3 Latin initial pl-, fl- and cl- ...


8

Syllable-initial Latin "Xl" clusters, where X is a consonant, regularly become "Xi" in Italian. Examples: platea -> piazza ('square') clamare -> chiamare ('call') flumen -> fiume ('river') glacia -> ghiaccio ('ice') blancus -> bianco ('white') As you surmise, these went through a stage of /ʎ/ (like Spanish <ll>)...


7

The most obvious reason for the difference is that Spanish, like English, does not have geminate consonants (aside from occasional “fake” geminates that arise from the same consonant occurring on either side of a morpheme or word boundary). Consonants that were geminate in Latin were simplified to singletons in Spanish but not in Italian. Interestingly, ...


6

Not all Calabrian is the same Calabrian (it: Calabrese) is the name given to the romance dialect continuum spoken in Calabria. It is commonly divided into two different language groups: In the southern two-thirds of the region, the Calabrian dialects are more closely related to Sicilian, grouped as Central-Southern Calabrian, or simply Calabro, and are ...


6

Actually, it seems that the most common modern point of view is that most Italian plurals come from the accusative plural, after the regular transformation that turned final /s/ into /j/. This explains perfectly also the third declension (so the ending -es became -ej>i). For example, from Martin Maiden's A linguistic history of Italian, section 2.12 An ...


6

Latin has a pretty large class of nouns like these, which are actually called abundantia in the grammatical tradition. They're second-declension nouns which occur as both masculine and neuter, with no difference in meaning. Examples: baculum/baculus 'staff', cingulum/cingulus 'belt', collum/collus 'neck', pileus/pileum 'cap', vallus/vallum 'palisade'. ...


5

The origin appears to come from the name of the Nizari Ismaili state founded by Hassan-i Sabbah who termed his followers Asāsiyyūn أساسيون, the root of which translates as "fundamentals". Marco Polo is credited with confusing that term with "hashish" الحشيش. A subset of the members of the sect, the فِدائيّين‎ fidāʼīyīn, engaged in ...


4

Apparently stront comes from a Proto-Germanic root *strentan-/*stranta(n)-/*strant(i)ō(n)-, which meant "something long and stiff", after what the Etymologisch Woordenboek van het Nederlands calls "the shape of solid excrement". The EWN also notes that Latin borrowed it as strundius, which is attested in the 9th century. As you say in your comment based on ...


4

The study in the TED talk you referenced was for students who probably had not learned another language before learning French. The reason why Esperanto was considered helpful was because it allowed the students to become acquainted and become comfortable with speaking a language other than their own. Esperanto is very simple and shares roots with many ...


4

The only Italian colony with any substantial settlement was Libya which mostly occurred in the 1930s. Just before WWII over 100,000 or 1/8 of the inhabitants were Italian settlers, or Italo-Libyans, many of whom left during and after the war. A common estimate for 1962 is 35.000 Italians in Libya. They were ordered to leave after al-Gaddafi took power, ...


4

In French, dishes "à la" stands for "à la façon de" which you could translate as "in the style of". So, "à la bourguignonne" means as it's done in that area of France. Same idea for the other languages. But sometimes the words "à la", "au", or "aux" point to some ingredients. For example: in "Courgettes farcies au saumon", the last part indicates that ...


4

For many languages, SUBTLEX is considered a good source for realistic frequencies. There is an Italian version, SUBTLEX-IT, available at http://crr.ugent.be/subtlex-it/; (Crepaldi, Keuleers, Mandera, & Brysbaert, 2013).


4

In any place where regional origin is associated with lower social status (basically, where internal migration in search of jobs and wages is/was important, or where a central political authority was recently imposed into a periphery) we will find such phenomenon. Some from Brazilian Portuguese: "ti" pronounced /θi/ instead of /t͡ʃi/ (very much the same as ...


4

First off: Italian is commonly analysed as inheriting the nominative forms of nouns from Vulgar Latin, instead of the accusative ones. I don't think I'd quite agree with that. In the plural, the forms are definitely nominative—but in the singular, I'd say they're usually clearly accusative. See for example notte < noctem, which can't possibly be ...


4

Those people just happen to have accents that sound similar to your ears. Features common to several European languages but not your native English stand out to your ears. It'd make sense to consider a General European English only if there were a conscious effort to teach it, or if Europeans were very unified culturally and developed it naturally. That's ...


4

While the link in ukemi's comment gives a good description of the rules governing S-voicing, the main question here has a simple answer. /s/ and /z/ are separate phonemes in (standard/Tuscan) Italian. This is shown by (near-)minimal pairs such as cosa /ko.sa/ "matter" and sposa /spo.za/ "bride". Both of these come directly from single Latin words, so the ...


3

In Hindi the usage of only /s/ in the place of /ʃ/ /ʂ/ and /s/ generally makes one sound less educated. Same with the realization of the monophthongs /ɛː/ and /ɔː/ as diphthongs /əɪ/ and /əʊ/. These are mostly found in rural areas that don't use standard Delhi Hindi (also called Khadi Boli), speaking e.g Haryanvi, Bhojpuri, Braj Bhasha etc.


3

Generally (in Central Italian), the definite article always accompanies a possessive pronoun - except when referring to a certain kinship names (singenionimi) in the singular. These are: padre, madre, figlio, figlia In many dialects of Italian this is extended to include: mamma, papà, fratello, sorella, zio/-a, cugino/-a nonno/-a, moglie, marito, cognato/-...


3

Frequency lists extracted from the WaCky corpora. Lists of words and lemmas are provided, sorted by frequency. itWaC (Italian) itWaC: a 2 billion word corpus constructed from the Web limiting the crawl to the .it domain and using medium-frequency words from the Repubblica corpus and basic Italian vocabulary lists as seeds. http://wacky.sslmit.unibo.it/...


3

The main reason is that it is (given the definition of contrast) not contrastive. The exercise of phonemicization requires that you start with phonetically transcribed data, not removing phonetic facts on the premise that something is predictable, and then look at the distribution of properties. If you find, in the phonetic data, that there are minimal pairs ...


3

"Stress in Italian is mostly length, isn't it?" I'm not sure what you mean by this. If you mean "stress in Italian is mostly realized as phonetic length", it might or might not be true, but it isn't what linguists tend to mean when they talk about a language having "contrastive vowel length". English has vowels of different lengths in pairs like feet and ...


2

According to the following source, the expression "break/bust my balls" comes from the old practice of cattle castration: Whether it’s busting or breaking, balls or stones, this expression has long been used by young men (and not a few women) to express a wide range of emotions brought about by the words or actions of another. Although the ...


2

Good question, I was making a list of languages that use the 'less-or-more' form, after first noticing it in Paul-Wexler's lecture, before his lecture, I assumed "less or more" is the more common form, as I'm fluent in Hebrew (where it's "less or more") and English (where's it's "more or less"), but I also spoke (not fluently) at the time two other languages ...


2

Just for (a random) curiosity :D : Latin pl, cl and fl bacame [ʃ] in portuguese (written ch). Example: planum > chão (doublet of "plano") plattus > chato (doublet of "prato") plenum > cheio (doublet of "pleno") clamare > chamar (doublet of "clamar") clave > chave ("doublet of "clave") flama > chama (doublet of "flama") flor > chor (later replaced by the ...


2

I would say, /l/ in specific Latin clusters was simply vocalized in Italian. That means the consonant became a vowel, which is not all that uncommon for a sound like this. Take for example r-vocalizations in German wer /veːɐ̯/ and English bear /bɛːə̯/. /l/ has been vocalized in Cockney, I think, feel [fiu̯], in Dutch goud 'gold' and Bavarian German varieties ...


2

One example I've seen in pre-Modern English is the 2 plurals of "brother": "Brothers" with the meaning of "my parent's other offspring" "Brethren" meaning "people of my same religion or political affiliation" English took most of its plurals from a single declension (accusative?). But in this case it preserved a plural from another case (nominative?) and ...


2

Among the phenomena which could reasonably fit your requirement of being about subject/object relation, Italian allows passivization of causatives. I believe this is quite rare among Romance languages. Compare the rare but completely acceptable La machina è stata fatta riparare a Gianni da Maria The car is been made repaired to Gianni by Maria with *La ...


2

As a native Spanish speaker I might use fruta or frutas according to the occasion. The difference might be small enough that I might doubt which one is correct, though. I suspect that nouns shifting from mass to countable and vice versa is extremely common; it is, indeed, in Spanish, and probably in all Romance languages, more than in English. (Maybe it's ...


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