Etymology gleanings for November 2015

It is true that the etymology of homo confirms the biblical story of the creation of man, but I am not aware of any other word for “man” that is akin to the word for “earth.” Latin mas (long vowel,
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Man in different languages It is true that the etymology of homo confirms the biblical story of the creation of man, but I am not aware of any other word for “man” that is akin to the word for “earth.” Latin mas (long vowel, genitive maris; masculinus ends in two suffixes), whose traces we have in Engl. masculine and marital and whose reflex, via French, is Engl. male, referred to “male,” not to “man.” Its etymology is, as usual, unknown. Comparison with Sanskrit (pú)mans “man” seems to have been abandoned. Russian chelovek (stress on the last syllable) is a compound. Although its etymology is not quite certain, rather probably, chel– has the root of a word for “rise, grow,” while –vek is related to Latvian vaiks “child” and its Lithuanian cognate. The similar-sounding Latvian compound was borrowed from Slavic. And yes, the old English word for “animal” was deor, related to German Tier. Now deer means “stag,” and the change of meaning (from “animal” to “the most often. . .

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News source: OUPblog » Linguistics

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