Re: Latin vs. Germanic

Subject: Re: Latin vs. Germanic
From: Michael Cargal <cargal -at- CTS -dot- COM>
Date: Mon, 4 Aug 1997 20:18:26 GMT

On 31 Jul 1997 18:46:27 -0500, Dave Whelan wrote:

>Another take on this is that after the Roman conquest, and later the Norman,
>Latin became the language of the leisured classes. The peasants who did all
>the work used Anglo-Saxon and other Germanic languages; the only ones who
>knew Latin were the rich and powerful from the aristocracy and church. The
>big wheels didn't have to do any work so Latin words lost their vibrancy to
>describe active work.

The Norman Conquest explains why food animals have anglo-saxon names
but cuts of meat have latin ones: Anglo-saxons cared for the animals
but Normans only ate them. William had an army but not a navy, which
explains why army ranks and terms are from Latin but naval ranks and
maritime terms from anglo-saxon (except a few ship's officers who were
army folk put onto the boats to keep the anglo-saxons in line, and
admiral, which is from Arabic).

Michael Cargal cargal -at- cts -dot- com

TECHWR-L (Technical Communication) List Information: To send a message
to 2500+ readers, e-mail to TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU -dot- Send commands
Search the archives at or search and
browse the archives at

Previous by Author: Manual vs. Guide -- Summary
Next by Author: Manual vs. Guide
Previous by Thread: Re: Latin vs. Germanic
Next by Thread: Re: Latin vs. Germanic

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads

Sponsored Ads