Language

alexandra.bolintineanu at utoronto.ca alexandra.bolintineanu at utoronto.ca
Sun Jan 9 23:29:46 EST 2000


Old English (7th-11th cent.) is much like German that way, with prefixes
helping make up new words.  It also has the same delicious trait as German  
of allowing one to make up composite nouns. Wuldorfaeder, for instance
(wuldor = miracle + faeder = father), is one of the poetic names for God.
A pity there's hardly any more such composition in Modern English.  We
miss such lovely beasts as the German word Donaudeltapassagierdampfschiff
(Donau = Danube + Delta + Passagier + Dampf = steam + schiff = ship).  


Alexandra
(who is letting course work spill over into the rest of her life)


On Sun, 9 Jan 2000, Irina Rempt wrote:

> On Sat, 8 Jan 2000, Jacob Proffitt wrote:
> 
> > The interesting thing I find in German is that there are more root words
> > with modifiers where the English uses an entirely new word.  My favorite
> > example is 'stehen'  Check this out:
> > 
> > Stehen:  to stand
> > Verstehen: to understand (note that english also has 'stand' in there)
> > Aufstehen:  to waken
> > Auferstehen: to resurrect
> 
> That's because German is an inflecting language, and English is close
> to being an isolating language. In fact English does the same thing,
> but the words are written separately: "put up", "put up with", "put
> off", "put out", to name a few.
> 
>    Irina
> 
> -- 
>             Varsinen an laynynay, saraz no arlet rastynay.
> irina at rempt.xs4all.nl (myself) - http://valdyas.conlang.org (Valdyas)
>         http://www.xs4all.nl/~bsarempt/irina/index.html (home)
> 
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