(L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by eldin raigmore »

What does Schwippschwager mean?
What does Schwappschwager mean?
What does Schwippschwappschwager mean?

What does stiefbruder mean?
What does milchbruder mean?
What does stiefmilchbruder mean?
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Post by Creyeditor »

A Schwippschwager is my sibling-in-law's spouse. So it's either my spouse's sibling's spouse or my sibling's spouse's sibling.

A Stiefbruder is just a step-brother. I have not heard the other terms before.

But I can add the Schwippscousin or Schwippskusine, which I have seen used for second cousins.
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Post by WeepingElf »

A Milchbruder 'milk brother' is someone raised by the same wet-nurse. It is as obsolete, though, as the institution of a wet-nurse (a woman who gives her milk to other children). Schwappschwager doesn't exist.
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Post by eldin raigmore »

@WeepingElf,Creyeditor:
Thanks!
….
@WeepingElf:
Is there a term for foster-brother?
I thought perhaps milchbruder might have that as a more up-to-date meaning.

@Creyeditor:
Are there terms with meanings similar to
spouse’s sibling’s spouse’s sibling
or to
sibling’s spouse’s sibling’s spouse
?
(I’ve seen a need for those in the lit. I’ve actually partied with my wife’s sister’s husband’s brother.)

What about five-step affines, like
sibling’s spouse’s sibling’s spouse’s sibling
or
spouse’s sibling’s spouse’s sibling’s spouse?
?
(I’m not sure I’ve ever read about any need for these terms; at least not often. Especially the triply-affine one.)
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Post by WeepingElf »

'Foster-brother' is Ziehbruder (as 'forster-son' is Ziehsohn etc.)
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Post by Creyeditor »

eldin raigmore wrote: 25 Oct 2021 18:05 @Creyeditor:
Are there terms with meanings similar to
spouse’s sibling’s spouse’s sibling
or to
sibling’s spouse’s sibling’s spouse
?
(I’ve seen a need for those in the lit. I’ve actually partied with my wife’s sister’s husband’s brother.)

What about five-step affines, like
sibling’s spouse’s sibling’s spouse’s sibling
or
spouse’s sibling’s spouse’s sibling’s spouse?
?
(I’m not sure I’ve ever read about any need for these terms; at least not often. Especially the triply-affine one.)
I think people would still call these Schwippschwager, if they would use any term at all.
.
WeepingElf wrote: 25 Oct 2021 18:55 'Foster-brother' is Ziehbruder (as 'forster-son' is Ziehsohn etc.)
Foster-child is also Pflegekind in more modern parlance, IINM. (I mostly get this idea from dubbings of US TV shows and movies.) So maybe people will talk about a Pflegebruder?
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Post by eldin raigmore »

“Creyeditor” wrote:I think people would still call these Schwippschwager, if they would use any term at all.
I think that matches Schnee’s livejournal. So I’ll believe it from now on.
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Interesting! Thanks.
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Post by KaiTheHomoSapien »

For the Ancient Greek noun ὕδωρ (hýdōr) "water", why is the oblique stem ὕδατ- (hýdat-)? Where does that -at- come from?
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Post by sangi39 »

KaiTheHomoSapien wrote: 04 Nov 2021 23:04 For the Ancient Greek noun ὕδωρ (hýdōr) "water", why is the oblique stem ὕδατ- (hýdat-)? Where does that -at- come from?
Apparently, it's from the PIE *-r/*-n alternation:

"Neuter nouns of the third declension are nearly identical to their masculine and feminine counterparts except for the nominative, accusative, and vocative cases in the singular and plural. Since the stem often ends with a sound which an Ancient Greek word cannot end on, the final sound is often dropped or changed in unmarked forms. The simplest and most common third declension neuters are the dental stems, such as ὄνομα (ónoma, “name”), stem ονοματ- (onomat-). Interestingly, the τ in the stem is a common feature of Ancient Greek words derived from PIE neuter n stems, which is not well explained."

Other examples include φρέᾱρ ~ φρέᾱτος, οὖθᾰρ ~ οὔθᾰτος, σκῶρ ~ σκᾰτός, and ἧπᾰρ ~ ἥπᾰτος, just to steal a handful from Wiktionary, which also lists -αρ ~ -ατος as a descendent of PIE *-r̥

As for why that *-n results in a τ? I honestly have no idea, but it does seem like that's where it comes from
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Post by KaiTheHomoSapien »

^Ah, thanks. I do remember reading something about it in Sihler, so I looked it up. He essentially says what you said. "-at- somehow continues -n-". There's a theory that it might have something to do with participle forms in -nt- but the connection between those and the n-stem nouns is not clear.
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Post by Pabappa »

σκῶρ ~ σκᾰτός
whoa .... i had no idea those two words were even related, let alone that they were the same word. the "-mentum" theory makes sense to me though ..... see for example how many words ending in -ma have plurals in -mata, .... and how there's a different alternation between -ma and a freestanding -ta. e.g. protoplasm but chloroplast, which were originally different parts of speech i think.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Vlürch »

eldin raigmore wrote: 19 Oct 2021 23:34Are interjections especially likely to be borrowed from one language to another, relative to other parts of speech, and to how many interjections each of the source language and borrowing language has?

Is the ease of borrowing interjections versus other parts of speech, significantly greater when the two languages are “genetically” unrelated and typologically dissimilar?

I ask because I’ve noticed lots of borrowed English interjections in YouTube videos by people who create in languages that are non-Indo-European and typologically not like English.
I don't know, but I think with English interjections in Youtube videos it might just be the global dominance of English, especially online. Sure, you can use the internet without any English, but like... you know?

At first I typed a detailed paragraph here with a few examples of why I think you might be right, but decided to remove it because I figured someone would probably start a "debate" about the subject one way or another, that I'm being either too "charitable" or too "judgemental" about this... but basically, in a nutshell, I think certain kinds of interjections from other languages are easier to use for some people because they can be ambiguously used sarcastically or sincerely, without necessarily the same "implications" that equivalent interjections already existing in the language they're speaking would have, and without necessarily the same "nuances" that they might have when used in the language they're borrowed from.

Anyway, since it's relevant to this exact topic, I'll mention something that really drives me up the wall: how some Finns say "c'mon!" with like an obnoxiously exaggerated "American" accent so it's /kɑmɑ̃ːːːːːn/ or something that clearly doesn't come naturally and sounds like they're coughing out an entire US state. Everyone who does that does it literally all the time, like once I was on the metro and a guy sitting near me talking on the phone yelled it probably a dozen times within those 10-15 minutes... it's not annoying if it's something you say occasionally and without the turbo-American accent, pretty sure I've said it myself (obviously when speaking English I have, but I mean also when speaking Finnish), but the correlation between saying it like that and saying it all the time is what makes it especially annoying.
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Post by Dormouse559 »

Would anyone happen to know of literature about the pragmatic/discourse role of word order in Old French? The sources I've found just acknowledge that different orders exist, without going into any detail on when and why they were used.

(Relatedly, I'm also looking into Old French's agreement of the past participle in transitive clauses. I've found information about frequency of agreement based on word order, but again no source interested in whether the choice to mark agreement or not had a distinct function.)
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Post by All4Ɇn »

Dormouse559 wrote: 01 Dec 2021 21:49 Would anyone happen to know of literature about the pragmatic/discourse role of word order in Old French? The sources I've found just acknowledge that different orders exist, without going into any detail on when and why they were used.

(Relatedly, I'm also looking into Old French's agreement of the past participle in transitive clauses. I've found information about frequency of agreement based on word order, but again no source interested in whether the choice to mark agreement or not had a distinct function.)
Histoire de la Langue by Peter A. Machonis goes a bit into this but not too much. From what I can gather this is how word order worked in Old French:
1. Most sentences follow a TVP (topic-verb-patient) sentence structure. Typically this would be SVO but could also be OVS if the subject is instead seen as the patient being acted upon. A sample sentence of OVS order given is Morz est li quens (Mort est le comte/Dead is the count). Here the count is seen as the patient of the action and so OVS is used. The T was also optional as sentences with intransitive verbs typically took the syntax VP (VS) instead such as Vendrat li jurz (Viendra le jour/Will come the day).
2. Subordinate clauses, showing the influence of German, were typically SOV. However sometimes SVO seems to be used as they provide the following sample sentence E Oliver ki est a mort naffret (Et Olivier qui est à mort blessé/And Oliver who was to death wounded).
3. The VS structure was lost over time in Old French as the V2 Germanic word order became more ingrained in the language.

There's only about 2 pages in the whole book I could find about this but hopefully this helps some!
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Post by Dormouse559 »

All4Ɇn wrote: 08 Dec 2021 22:24
Dormouse559 wrote: 01 Dec 2021 21:49 Would anyone happen to know of literature about the pragmatic/discourse role of word order in Old French? The sources I've found just acknowledge that different orders exist, without going into any detail on when and why they were used.

(Relatedly, I'm also looking into Old French's agreement of the past participle in transitive clauses. I've found information about frequency of agreement based on word order, but again no source interested in whether the choice to mark agreement or not had a distinct function.)
Histoire de la Langue by Peter A. Machonis goes a bit into this but not too much. From what I can gather this is how word order worked in Old French:
1. Most sentences follow a TVP (topic-verb-patient) sentence structure. Typically this would be SVO but could also be OVS if the subject is instead seen as the patient being acted upon. A sample sentence of OVS order given is Morz est li quens (Mort est le comte/Dead is the count). Here the count is seen as the patient of the action and so OVS is used. The T was also optional as sentences with intransitive verbs typically took the syntax VP (VS) instead such as Vendrat li jurz (Viendra le jour/Will come the day).
2. Subordinate clauses, showing the influence of German, were typically SOV. However sometimes SVO seems to be used as they provide the following sample sentence E Oliver ki est a mort naffret (Et Olivier qui est à mort blessé/And Oliver who was to death wounded).
3. The VS structure was lost over time in Old French as the V2 Germanic word order became more ingrained in the language.

There's only about 2 pages in the whole book I could find about this but hopefully this helps some!
Thank you! That's more than I had in any case, and I hadn't seen anything that dealt with topics.
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Post by Omzinesý »

I read VSO and VOS often alternate in languges where one is dominant.
What is the difference in meaning? Is one of the positions (after the verb or finally) more topical, or how do the clauses differ?
My meta-thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5760
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Post by Vlürch »

Omzinesý wrote: 10 Dec 2021 22:59I read VSO and VOS often alternate in languges where one is dominant.
What is the difference in meaning? Is one of the positions (after the verb or finally) more topical, or how do the clauses differ?
Probably depends on the language?

Aaaaaaand then, uh...

I have a stupid question that I'm aware is stupid, but I honestly can't find anything about this.

The question is, when exactly did Latin /k/ and /g/ shift into palatal affricates before front vowels? Literally the only relevant thing that I can find is Wikipedia's list of sound changes from Classical Latin to Proto-Romance (which I always thought was just Vulgar Latin, but apparently not), and it doesn't answer that question. It mentions /k/ becoming palatalised to [c] but without knowing exactly how Proto-Romance is defined or when it was spoken, that doesn't really help...

But I'm assuming the palatalisation hadn't yet happened in the first century CE since that was still Classical Latin period, right?

Asking for conlanging purposes, of course. The idea is a Romlang set somewhere in what's IRL eastern Turkey that first had a period of heavy influence from Greek, then from Parthian and Middle Persian, and then modern Persian, with some influence from Armenian, Turkish and Arabic sprinkled in, with an althistory scenario where its speakers ended up in the eastern frontier of the Roman Empire around Trajan's or Hadrian's time and got kinda isolated from other Latin-speakers.

I'd prefer to have /k g/ remain /k g/ even before front vowels, but I'm not sure if that's even remotely realistic since AFAIK literally all Romance languages had the /k g/ -> /t͡ʃ d͡ʒ/ shift... but if the language branched off early enough, would there be any reason it couldn't have avoided that shift? Would it even be a Romance language if it branched off into its own thing that early, or more like Para-Romance or something? And I mean, phonetically they'd be [c ɟ] or at the very least [kʲ gʲ], but I really wouldn't want them to be sibilant affricates. Not sure if I'll actually do anything with this conlang idea anyway (except a rough draft lol), but...
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Post by VaptuantaDoi »

Vlürch wrote: 19 Dec 2021 07:07 The question is, when exactly did Latin /k/ and /g/ shift into palatal affricates before front vowels? Literally the only relevant thing that I can find is Wikipedia's list of sound changes from Classical Latin to Proto-Romance (which I always thought was just Vulgar Latin, but apparently not), and it doesn't answer that question. It mentions /k/ becoming palatalised to [c] but without knowing exactly how Proto-Romance is defined or when it was spoken, that doesn't really help...
The fifth century AD aparently:
Lori Repetti in the Oxford Guide to the Romance Languages wrote:The velar stops /k, g/ immediately followed by a front vowel underwent palatalization in about the 5th century AD in nearly all of Romance.

[...]

The voiceless velars resisted palatalization longer than the voiced ones
The first sequence to palatalise was /ti̯/, in about the second century AD; then after that /ki̯/. Most sequences involving a coronal/velar + yod (/i̯/) palatalised fairly early on; especially /ti̯ di̯ ki̯ gi̯ ni̯ li̯/. Even the most conservative Sardinian varieties palatalise /ti̯ di̯ ki̯ gi̯/.
I'd prefer to have /k g/ remain /k g/ even before front vowels, but I'm not sure if that's even remotely realistic since AFAIK literally all Romance languages had the /k g/ -> /t͡ʃ d͡ʒ/ shift... but if the language branched off early enough, would there be any reason it couldn't have avoided that shift?
Logudorese Sardinian doesn't have that shift. And (according to a theory, which I agree with*), the Dalmatian didn't initially have that shift, only palatalising later, once it had already diverged. Anyway, it's definitely not impossible for another early branch of Romance to not, or only partially, undergo palatalisation.


*Either way, it didn't palatalise before all front vowels; e.g. CĒNA > /kai̯na/, CEREBELLA > /karˈvi̯ale/
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Post by Salmoneus »

VaptuantaDoi wrote: 19 Dec 2021 09:51
Vlürch wrote: 19 Dec 2021 07:07 The question is, when exactly did Latin /k/ and /g/ shift into palatal affricates before front vowels? Literally the only relevant thing that I can find is Wikipedia's list of sound changes from Classical Latin to Proto-Romance (which I always thought was just Vulgar Latin, but apparently not), and it doesn't answer that question. It mentions /k/ becoming palatalised to [c] but without knowing exactly how Proto-Romance is defined or when it was spoken, that doesn't really help...
The fifth century AD aparently
Although that makes sense, I'm curious as to how they can pin it down so precisely, given that palatalisation is not necessarily accompanied by any change in orthography!
The voiceless velars resisted palatalization longer than the voiced ones
And the outcome of the palatalisation of /g/ doesn't always parallel that of /k/.
The first sequence to palatalise was /ti̯/, in about the second century AD; then after that /ki̯/. Most sequences involving a coronal/velar + yod (/i̯/) palatalised fairly early on; especially /ti̯ di̯ ki̯ gi̯ ni̯ li̯/. Even the most conservative Sardinian varieties palatalise /ti̯ di̯ ki̯ gi̯/.
AIUI, all Romance dialects have palatalisation before /j/, all except Sardinian have palatalisation of velars before /i/ (Campidanese palatalisation presumably being a later development due to influence from Italian dialects), all except Sardinian and Dalmatian have it before /e/, and Gallo-Rhaeto-Romance has it before /a/. To complete the picture, /tS/ > /ts/ in Gallic-dominated dialects (i.e. in France, northern Italy and northern Spain, remembering that North Iberian would much later take over the whole of the peninsula), and this happened before palatalisation before /a/. The same shift didn't occur for /dZ/, except in Istria and northeastern Italy. Oh, and /pj bj/ got palatalised in France too but it didn't spread far, whereas /sj/ was palatalised in Italy.
I'd prefer to have /k g/ remain /k g/ even before front vowels, but I'm not sure if that's even remotely realistic since AFAIK literally all Romance languages had the /k g/ -> /t͡ʃ d͡ʒ/ shift... but if the language branched off early enough, would there be any reason it couldn't have avoided that shift?
Logudorese Sardinian doesn't have that shift. And (according to a theory, which I agree with*), the Dalmatian didn't initially have that shift, only palatalising later, once it had already diverged. Anyway, it's definitely not impossible for another early branch of Romance to not, or only partially, undergo palatalisation.


*Either way, it didn't palatalise before all front vowels; e.g. CĒNA > /kai̯na/, CEREBELLA > /karˈvi̯ale/
Palatalisation is also assumed not to have happened in Africa, at least before /i e/, or at least early on - it's still /k/ in loanwords into Berber.
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Post by Salmoneus »

Vlürch wrote: 19 Dec 2021 07:07 Classical Latin to Proto-Romance (which I always thought was just Vulgar Latin, but apparently not)
They're defined differently. Proto-Romance is the reconstructed theoretical earliest common ancestor of modern Romance languages (it's a linguistic concept and refers to a specific dialect that may only be theoretical); Vulgar Latin is the language attested to have actually been spoken by ordinary Roman citizens at any time in Roman history (it's a historical concept and refers to actual dialects, but not necessarily to a single dialect spoken at a single point in time).

Presumably, Proto-Romance or something similar to it was a form of Vulgar Latin. But there would have been forms of Vulgar Latin that predate PR, and potentially forms that postdate it (that is, very very Early Old French (etc) was perhaps still just a local form of Vulgar Latin). And there's no guarantee (thanks to the confounding forces of areal influence and convergent evolution) that an exact form oof PR was ever actually spoken exactly as we reconstruct it.
But I'm assuming the palatalisation hadn't yet happened in the first century CE since that was still Classical Latin period, right?
Classical and Vulgar aren't different periods, they're different sociolects.

The literary language goes Old Latin > Classical Latin > Late Latin > Mediaeval Latin
The vernacular language goes Old Latin > Vulgar Latin > Old (insert romance language here)

Vulgar Latin was contemporary to Classical Latin (and to Late Latin), but was less conservative - phonologically, but more so in vocabulary and grammar. Because it's less conservative, Vulgar Latin can be thought of as evolving out of written Classical Latin (in that you can derive the Vulgar forms by sound change from an assumed language based on Classical spelling), but really they co-existed, both developing out of Old Latin, but Classical Latin refusing to recognise in writing all of the changes that were happening in speech). Late Latin then developed out of Classical Latin largely by the reintroduction of Vulgar Latin elements.

Proto-Romance is a specific but theoretical dialect of Vulgar Latin that would explain all later Romance languages.

The first century CE is indeed in the Classical period - authors of the day wrote in Classcal Latin - but people would actually have spoken (and sometimes written, in some contexts) Vulgar Latin. That is, if you read the graffiti from Pompei, it's not all written the way that Ovid or Seneca would have written.

Specifically, apparently, Pompeiian graffiti indicates that the following was at least potentially the case by the time of the erruption:

- lenition and degemination
- loss of final /m/ and of /n/ before /s/ (the former was commented on by Classical grammarians as a thing, and the latter is found in literary Late Latin)
- epenthetic /i/ added before sC clusters
- syncope of at least some unstressed medial vowels (Augustus did this and found the unsycopated forms pretentious in speech)
- /au/ > /o/ (always a thing, as it occured in Umbrian. Some branches of the Claudian family called themselves Clodians, though the exact significance of this is debated)
- /awi/ > /au/
- /ae/, /oe/ > /e/
- /e/, /i/ > /j/ before vowels
- loss of final unstressed /s/

Note, though, that not every trend found in vernacular speech ends up becoming standard - some die out. For instance, although lenition and degemination became fashionable in Gaul, they actually didn't catch on in the long run in Italy, perhaps because the guys who were witing like this in Italy ended up 'correcting' what had become a class shibboleth, while those in the provinces adopted what they saw as a fashionable Italian accent. It's kind of like the way people from unfashionable places may imitate the colloquial speech of New York or London, without realising that actually in those cities the colloquial speech has already abandoned some of the innovations they're copying...

Anyway, it seems as though at this time the difference between Vulgar and Classical was quite limited in terms of phonology; it was much more substantial in terms of vocabulary.
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