63

Classification of languages is a historical thing, rather than a synchronic one. Just like genetic classification of humans—someone who marries into a new family and goes and lives with them is nonetheless still genetically related to the family they came from. The majority of the total vocabulary in English may be borrowed rather than inherited, but the ...


44

English does have that verb which is etymologically related to the Swedish heter, Icelandic heiti, German heißen, etc. In English it is to hight, only it is archaic, still sometimes it is used nowadays, mostly in poetry, for example in the 1943 poem I hight Don Quixote, I live on peyote by John Whiteside “Jack” Parsons, or in the name of the modern punk rock ...


32

Languages evolve in many ways! Proto-Indo-European had no articles at all, but they evolved independently in several different branches: you can still see the similarity between English "the" and "that", which is almost exactly the same as how ille turned into el/il/etc. It looks a bit more likely, too, when you realize this evolution only had to happen ...


29

French, Spanish and Italian use SVO in clauses with non-pronominal arguments. Many languages make use of more than one kind of word order; the "canonical" order used in simplistic categorizations of entire languages as "SVO" vs. "SOV" etc. has to be based on some particular subset of clauses in the language in cases like that. English isn't SVO in all ...


24

The first thing I thought of was names derived in antiquity from the names of ancient Greek goddesses. For example, the French male name Hercule is ultimately from the name of the Greek goddess Hera (Ἥρα) (it's not just a masculinized form of the name, though, obviously). The name Artemio seems to be used in Italian and Spanish; I believe it comes from the ...


21

such a drastic structural change The change is not drastic at all! It is a simple case of semantic bleaching (this is where the meaning of a word gets weaker. So you can kind of see how the is a "weaker version" of that). Also it's not a structural change, since wherever ille and all its forms may be used, it's the same whether it was early on and meant ...


16

None, really. TL;DR: the tria nomina were dead before the empire was, so pre-Romance times. Long version: The tria nomina system is the most famous used in ancient Rome, but it wasn't by any means universal. It had already started to fade out in the first century. Around this time, the upper classes started using multiple nomina to indicate extra familial ...


15

Yes, Germanic angst and Latin anxiety are derived from the same Proto-Indo-European root, which was something like *h₂enǵʰ- "constrict, narrow". Philippa (2003-2009) confirm that they are cognates: under angst they say, "see eng"; under eng they say that the word is related to Latin ango and they give the Proto-Indo-European root as above. Also related is ...


15

The Trésor de la langue française has most the answer to your question in the etymology section for femme: From Classical Latin femina “female”, then “woman, wife” which competed against the Latin words mulier “woman” which no longer survives in French (contrast with Italian moglie, Spanish mujer) except in the archaic form moillier “wife, woman” (which ...


14

Besides the fact that Londres and so on originate from Latin Londinium, I unfortunately have not been able to find any dictionary entry that explains the etymology of this word and the sound changes that occurred. However, I did find a post on the Wordorigins Discussion Forum archive that gives some information: It's a regular sound change in Old ...


14

The question should probably be restated as something like "When did people begin to believe that Romance and Germanic languages were related with some scholarly basis for that belief?" The qualification is necessary because in the pre-modern West, the reigning idea about language diversity was that all languages were ultimately descended from Hebrew ...


13

If you don't want to get into details of linguistics (which I take it you don't) the best way to see the family resemblance is to take a comparative look at English's closest linguistic relative found on mainland Europe: Frisian. Some sample words in Frisian, English, Dutch, and German: dei, day, dag, Tag rein, rain, regen, Regen wei, way, weg, Weg ...


13

From my understanding of the other answers, I think English does have this idiom. Only, instead of a "word", in English "nothing at all" is used (or if you're a programmer, the empty string). The Swedish phrase: Jag heter XX is translatable to English as: I am called XX But this is uncommon in spoken English. Instead of directly translating "heter" to "...


13

Did Romance languages evolve in North Africa? Yes. What languages were spoken in North Africa between Vulgar Latin and the arrival of Arabic? Both Romance and Arabic failed to totally supplant the Berber languages as they supplanted other languages in many other places. After Latin and then Arabic came Mediterranean Sabir a.k.a. lingua franca, another ...


12

If you want inflectional forms, you'd have to look at the major Romance language which still inflects nouns, Romanian. Even there, you will only find a reflex of -orum in the articles as far as I'm aware, but the indefinite article inflects to unor from Latin unorum, and the definite article is even better because, while coming from ille like in other ...


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.


11

In Italian there are a number of historically female names which are occasionally used as male names, e.g. Celeste, Amabile, Fiore, Diamante In many Romance languages the female name Maria (or some variant thereof) has historically been used in male names, either standalone or as part of a compound name, though this practice has generally declined with ...


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- ...


10

(Latin to French) inflectional forms: chandeleur < festa candelarum leur < illorum toponyms like Villefavreux (< villa Villa Fabrorum) or Villepreux (< villa Piorum) fossilized expressions: French "quorum" maybe French "variorum" "Ouvrage accompagné de notes et commentaires." but I didn't know this word In Old ...


9

There are forces driving language evolution, and we see two of them at work here. The first driving force is Regularisation. The irregular pattern of latin (indicated by duodeviginti and undeviginti, showing a counting down from 20 instead of counting up from 10) wasn't able to resist this driving force and all quoted modern Romance languages use "counting ...


9

According to Wiktionary (a source I should perhaps have checked before asking), the all- forms ultimately derive from Vulgar Latin alare (attested in the 7th century Reichenau Glosses). This has traditionally been explained as deriving from Latin ambulare via or together with ambler (compare Old Provençal amblar, Italian ambiare, Romanian umbla), but this ...


9

English does have a word for it, it's called. e.g. Swedish: Jag heter Danny English: I'm called Danny Although I'm Danny, or My name's Danny sounds less 'weird' to me.


9

The greeting/parting distinction In many languages there is a distinction between the greeting upon meeting eg Good day! and the farewell upon parting Have a good day! The comparison table in the question mixes those two distinct senses, and also mixes evening and night. In Italian there is Buon giorno! and Buona sera! but also Buona giornata! and Buona ...


9

The French words for the cardinal points (nord, sud, est, ouest) are definitely borrowed from some Germanic language, presumably in connection with seafaring in the North Sea. (This answers the "why" part of your question). The supposition that they were borrowed specifically from Old English (and not, for example, from the Normans) is supported by the ...


9

L /kasˈtɛl.lʊm/ > VL /kasˈtɛl.lũ/ > OF /t͡ʃahˈtɛl/ > MF /ʃaˈtɛau/> F /ʃaˈto/ L /ˈwɛ.tʊ.lʊm/ > VL /ˈβɛ.lũ/ > /ˈvjɛ.lu/ > OF /vjɛl/ > MF /vjɛu/ > F /vjø/ L /kaˈpɪl.lʊm/ > VL /kaˈβel.lũ/ > OF /t͡ʃəˈvel/ > MF /ʃəˈvɛu/ > F /ʃəˈvø/ L /sɪˈɡɪl.lʊm/ > VL /se.ɣɛl.lũ/ > OF /səˈɛl/ > MF /sɛau/ > F ...


8

This is known as an ephelcystic s and is analogous to the ephelcystic t in "Parle-t-il français?". It's euphonic rather than etymological, used to avoid a hiatus between the imperative and the y/en. I believe that historically there would have been an elision instead ("retourn'y") but I don't have a source confirming this. When still considered incorrect, ...


8

Sort of. The short answer is that the uvular R of, say, German and Dutch is probably in origin an independent development from the French uvular (as it is in Northumbrian English.) It is true that the eventual rise of the Parisian uvular is what helped it to spread. Were it not for the rise of the Parisian /ʀ/ in the 19th century, uvular Rs throughout ...


8

What we know is that the have perfect is a Sprachbund feature of Standard Average European. Where it originated is less clear. Because Romance languages are better documented in the late antiquity and early medieval time we have more early precursors of the have perfect in them. However, Southern German had a real need to develop a new perfect or past tense ...


8

Neuter in Latin differed from Masculine only for Nominative and Accusative cases. When case-endings began to collapse in early Proto-Romance, Neuter singular was reassigned to masculine and some Neuter plural ending in -a became feminine singular.


8

I've read that even in Latin, we see some variability in the declension of words as neuter or masculine. Sometimes the use of the masculine where neuter would be expected is attributed to "personification". So the fall of the neuter seems to have been a long and at least somewhat gradual process. I will update this post if I find more detailed ...


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