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Switched words

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  • stefichjo
    Just a curiosity: It occured to me that in at least three cases German has word pairs that seem to be switched in FS / English: DE nichts - FS niht - EN
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 12, 2006
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      Just a curiosity:
      It occured to me that in at least three cases German has word pairs
      that seem to be switched in FS / English:

      DE nichts - FS niht - EN nothing
      DE nicht - FS nihts - EN not

      DE wo - FS war - EN where
      DE wer - FS wa - EN who

      DE Stern - FS stern - EN star
      DE starr - FS stern - EN stern

      Bye,
      Stephan
    • David Parke
      ... I don t understand this. DE nicht, NL niet, EN not. There s no final s on any of them. ... The -r in DE wer seems to be the same -r ending on pronouns that
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 12, 2006
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        --- In folkspraak@yahoogroups.com, "stefichjo" <sts@...> wrote:
        >
        > Just a curiosity:
        > It occured to me that in at least three cases German has word pairs
        > that seem to be switched in FS / English:
        >
        > DE nichts - FS niht - EN nothing
        > DE nicht - FS nihts - EN not

        I don't understand this. DE nicht, NL niet, EN not. There's no final s
        on any of them.

        >
        > DE wo - FS war - EN where
        > DE wer - FS wa - EN who

        The -r in DE wer seems to be the same -r ending on pronouns that has
        been likewise dropped from the English equivalent to "wir" and "er".
        I'd suspect that the "-r" is a case inflection, since DE also has
        "wen", "wem" and "wessen", corresponding to EN whom and whose.

        In the case of "wo", yes german seems to have dropped the "r" but
        there are other words such as "warum" and "worauf" for which the first
        element is from the same source and the "r" has been retained.


        >
        > DE Stern - FS stern - EN star
        > DE starr - FS stern - EN stern

        In the case of the FS word for "star" , think that it could just as
        validly be "sterr" as "stern". The situation is evenly split between
        DE Stern Scandy stjerne with a final "n", and EN star NL ster with no
        final "n"

        In cases of 50-50 splits, I normally give preference to the EN form,
        so in my dialect of FS, the word is "sterr".
      • stefichjo
        ... Yes, this representation was confusing, I guess. I regret this, and I am sorry. Maybe this will help: nix nothing, none, 1789, from Ger. nix, dial.
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 13, 2006
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          --- In folkspraak@yahoogroups.com, "David Parke" <parked@...> wrote:
          > > DE nichts - FS niht - EN nothing
          > > DE nicht - FS nihts - EN not
          >
          > I don't understand this. DE nicht, NL niet, EN not. There's no final s
          > on any of them.

          Yes, this representation was confusing, I guess. I regret this, and I
          am sorry.

          Maybe this will help:

          nix
          "nothing, none," 1789, from Ger. nix, dial. variant of nichts
          "nothing," from M.H.G. nihtes, from gen. of niht, nit "nothing," from
          O.H.G. niwiht, from ni, ne "no" + wiht "thing, creature" (cf. naught).
          The verb is attested from 1903.

          So the original form is "niht", which is a noun, and its genitive case
          is "nihts" which may be used an adverb, of course. Same as "Abend" and
          "abends" in German and likely "avend" and "avends" in (my) Folksprak.

          > > DE Stern - FS stern - EN star
          > > DE starr - FS stern - EN stern
          >
          > In the case of the FS word for "star" , think that it could just as
          > validly be "sterr" as "stern". The situation is evenly split between
          > DE Stern Scandy stjerne with a final "n", and EN star NL ster with no
          > final "n"
          >
          > In cases of 50-50 splits, I normally give preference to the EN form,
          > so in my dialect of FS, the word is "sterr".

          The English form should be "star" then, not "sterr"?
          Which would be your translation for "stern" then?
        • David Parke
          ... My dialect word for not , is nejt , based on EN not, NL niet, DE nicht. The j is a token of the lost *h sound. My word for nothing is nejts which
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 13, 2006
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            --- In folkspraak@yahoogroups.com, "stefichjo" <sts@...> wrote:
            >
            > --- In folkspraak@yahoogroups.com, "David Parke" <parked@> wrote:
            > > > DE nichts - FS niht - EN nothing
            > > > DE nicht - FS nihts - EN not
            > >
            > > I don't understand this. DE nicht, NL niet, EN not. There's no final s
            > > on any of them.
            >
            > Yes, this representation was confusing, I guess. I regret this, and I
            > am sorry.
            >
            > Maybe this will help:
            >
            > nix
            > "nothing, none," 1789, from Ger. nix, dial. variant of nichts
            > "nothing," from M.H.G. nihtes, from gen. of niht, nit "nothing," from
            > O.H.G. niwiht, from ni, ne "no" + wiht "thing, creature" (cf. naught).
            > The verb is attested from 1903.
            >
            > So the original form is "niht", which is a noun, and its genitive case
            > is "nihts" which may be used an adverb, of course. Same as "Abend" and
            > "abends" in German and likely "avend" and "avends" in (my) Folksprak.

            My dialect word for "not", is "nejt", based on EN not, NL niet, DE
            nicht. The "j" is a token of the lost *h sound.
            My word for "nothing" is "nejts" which is also modelled after NL
            niets, DE nichts. That is, it is "nejt" plus a genitive "-s". And I
            considered EN nix when deciding upon it. The other alternative that I
            considered was "nênting", based on EN nothing, Scandy ingenting. The
            presence of "nix" in EN tipped the scales in favour of "nejts"


            >
            > > > DE Stern - FS stern - EN star
            > > > DE starr - FS stern - EN stern
            > >
            > > In the case of the FS word for "star" , think that it could just as
            > > validly be "sterr" as "stern". The situation is evenly split between
            > > DE Stern Scandy stjerne with a final "n", and EN star NL ster with no
            > > final "n"
            > >
            > > In cases of 50-50 splits, I normally give preference to the EN form,
            > > so in my dialect of FS, the word is "sterr".
            >
            > The English form should be "star" then, not "sterr"?
            > Which would be your translation for "stern" then?
            >

            Maybe I wasn't totally clear. I don't mean that the FS word, would be
            exactly the same as the EN word, I meant that the features (be it
            lexical, phonological) that was evenly split, would follow the English
            form. In the case of the word for star, the feature that is evenly
            split is whether the word ends in [n] or not. Stern/stjerne/stjärna vs
            ster/star.
            The vowel has a clear majority for short e. But it's the ending that
            is disputed with no clear majority. So I would have the majority [E]
            vowel and no final n; Thus "sterr". Which incidentally is not the
            exactly the EN form, but is more or less the Dutch word (ster, pl sterren)
          • stefichjo
            ... from ... naught). ... case ... as Abend and ... Folksprak. ... I ... Yeah. Apparently nix comes from German. What about naught , nought and aught ?
            Message 5 of 6 , Sep 14, 2006
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              --- In folkspraak@yahoogroups.com, "David Parke" <parked@...> wrote:
              > > nix
              > > "nothing, none," 1789, from Ger. nix, dial. variant of nichts
              > > "nothing," from M.H.G. nihtes, from gen. of niht, nit "nothing,"
              from
              > > O.H.G. niwiht, from ni, ne "no" + wiht "thing, creature" (cf.
              naught).
              > > The verb is attested from 1903.
              > >
              > > So the original form is "niht", which is a noun, and its genitive
              case
              > > is "nihts" which may be used an adverb, of course. Same
              as "Abend" and
              > > "abends" in German and likely "avend" and "avends" in (my)
              Folksprak.
              >
              > My dialect word for "not", is "nejt", based on EN not, NL niet, DE
              > nicht. The "j" is a token of the lost *h sound.
              > My word for "nothing" is "nejts" which is also modelled after NL
              > niets, DE nichts. That is, it is "nejt" plus a genitive "-s". And I
              > considered EN nix when deciding upon it. The other alternative that
              I
              > considered was "nênting", based on EN nothing, Scandy ingenting. The
              > presence of "nix" in EN tipped the scales in favour of "nejts"

              Yeah. Apparently "nix" comes from German.

              What about "naught", "nought" and "aught"? They don't end in "-s" but
              they are nouns, aren't they?

              Anyway, I understand your approach. I think this example
              ("not", "nothing") illustrates very well the principal difference
              between our two dialects.

              > > The English form should be "star" then, not "sterr"?
              > > Which would be your translation for "stern" then?
              > >
              >
              > Maybe I wasn't totally clear. I don't mean that the FS word, would
              be
              > exactly the same as the EN word, I meant that the features (be it
              > lexical, phonological) that was evenly split, would follow the
              English
              > form. In the case of the word for star, the feature that is evenly
              > split is whether the word ends in [n] or not. Stern/stjerne/stjärna
              vs
              > ster/star.
              > The vowel has a clear majority for short e. But it's the ending that
              > is disputed with no clear majority. So I would have the majority [E]
              > vowel and no final n; Thus "sterr". Which incidentally is not the
              > exactly the EN form, but is more or less the Dutch word (ster, pl
              sterren)

              I see. But, coming back to my question: how would you say EN "star"
              and EN "stern" in FS respectively?
            • David Parke
              ... I m not sure. Probably E stern would be FS starr -- based on EN stern, NL star, DE starr. I think EN also has star as an adjective (could be rare, i ll
              Message 6 of 6 , Sep 14, 2006
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                >
                > > > The English form should be "star" then, not "sterr"?
                > > > Which would be your translation for "stern" then?
                > > >
                > >
                > > Maybe I wasn't totally clear. I don't mean that the FS word, would
                > be
                > > exactly the same as the EN word, I meant that the features (be it
                > > lexical, phonological) that was evenly split, would follow the
                > English
                > > form. In the case of the word for star, the feature that is evenly
                > > split is whether the word ends in [n] or not. Stern/stjerne/stjärna
                > vs
                > > ster/star.
                > > The vowel has a clear majority for short e. But it's the ending that
                > > is disputed with no clear majority. So I would have the majority [E]
                > > vowel and no final n; Thus "sterr". Which incidentally is not the
                > > exactly the EN form, but is more or less the Dutch word (ster, pl
                > sterren)
                >
                > I see. But, coming back to my question: how would you say EN "star"
                > and EN "stern" in FS respectively?
                >

                I'm not sure. Probably E stern would be FS starr -- based on EN stern,
                NL star, DE starr.
                I think EN also has "star" as an adjective (could be rare, i'll need
                to check my Shorter Oxford tonight), which might be the more direct
                cognate to DE starr than EN stern.
                Sorry I am at work right now, so I don't have access to all my
                dictionaries.
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