Re: Latin vs. Germanic

Subject: Re: Latin vs. Germanic
From: Bill Burns <BillDB -at- ILE -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 1 Aug 1997 10:25:28 -0600

Alessandro writes:

> A few examples of english/italian "false friends":
> "actually" is very similar to "attualmente", that means "currently"
> "eventually" is very similar to "eventualmente", that means "in
> case..."
> "terrific" is very similar to "terrificante", that means "awfull"
>
These terms are referred to as cognates. The word pairs have the same
linguistic roots, but their meanings have diverged since the terms were
borrowed from Latin through amelioration, pejoration, or some other
semantic shifting.

For some audiences, etymological distinctions such as Anglo-Saxon vs.
Latinate are less helpful. Nonetheless, I find that my simplist, most
direct writing has few Latinate terms.

Bill Burns
Technical Writer
ILE Communications Group
billdb -at- ile -dot- com

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