I know im slow. Its just struck me. Kjeller = cellar. I'm musing on the route of Norwegian borrowed latin and French words. I just cant see the historical route.
is there a functional difference between a basement and a cellar
i mean, is there a different word for the thing you store furniture in and the thing you keep wine in or is that compound word territory
Sometimes there is no difference- i.e. if one is referring to a below-ground-level space to store stuff then it can be called either a "basement" or a "cellar" (although a "cellar" tends to imply a smaller space than a "basement"). However, when the space is designed to be a habitable area, it can only be called a basement (often specifically called a "finished basement"). For example, most houses and apartment buildings in the Midwest of the United States have below-ground levels. If the space is habitable and someone's room/living space is on that level, he/she would say "I live in/I rent/My room is in/My apartment is in the basement." (It would sound strange to say "I live in the cellar" (this gives the mental image of living in a small storage space with a rough concrete floor, unpainted walls, etc.)
I definitely feel this is true of English, but is it also true of Norwegian?
There are no alternatives to kjeller, but kjellerleilighet is basement apartment.