December 17, 2016

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Nice correspondence for those who know other Romance languages: non-initial "r" in Romanian often corresponds to "l" in the other languages. Romanian 'miere' = Italian 'miele', Spanish 'miel'. Romanian 'sare' = Italian 'sale', Spanish 'sal'. Romanian 'măr' = Italian 'mela'. etc.

[deactivated user]

    Linguists even have a name for it! :)


    Also there's the modification of "d" into "z".

    Latin "die", Spanish "dia" -> "zi" = day in Romanian

    Latin "decem", Italian "dieci" -> "zece" = ten

    Latin "dicere", Italian "dire" -> "zice" = to say

    • 2517

    Great observation! However, you know how it goes between languages (even dialects). To every rule, there has to be one or two exceptions which vary every which way. For example, you have abstract ideas that match the pattern: Durere = douleur, Fericire = félicité, etc. On the other hand, you have: Putere = pouvoir, Reproducere = reproduction, Facere = fabrication, Construcție = construction, Băutură = boisson, Pară = poire, Cireașă = cerise (ciliegia in It!)... And then you have the really weird ones like: conducere = leadership (I love French, don't you?-).


    Good nuance! It all comes down to the original phoneme. The Proto-Romance 'l' tended to become 'r' in Romanian and stay 'l' elsewhere, while the Proto-Romance 'r' (as well as the 'r's in reborrowed Latinate terms like "reproducere") remained 'r' in all the daughter languages. There's also positional factors, like initial 'l' stayed 'l' in Romanian (e.g. lingua --> limbă)


    I was noticing that copil is a child, and the plural is copiii...which sounds comically like COPY. And if you think about it, what are your kids...but copies you have made, right?

    • 2517

    Very interesting observation/correlation! Even more so, since copil comes from Slavic/albanian roots while copie comes from French/Latin!

    BTW, a minor correction (notice difference between 2 and 3), which supports your observation:

    1. copil = a child
    2. copii = children, copies,
    3. copiii = the children
    4. copiile = the copies
    5. copie = copy


    I would like to add this link to show not only the etymology but also other Romance cognates:


    From Latin mel, mellem, possibly through Vulgar Latin *melem (a root). Ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *mélid. Miel (“lamb”) is a false friend to other Romance cognates of miere, which include Catalan mel, French miel, Italian miele, Portuguese mel, Spanish miel, Aromanian njare, Megleno-Romanian m'ari, Istro-Romanian mľåre.


    IPA: /ˈmje.re/


    miere f (uncountable)

    1) honey

    From Wiktionary:


    Declension chart (singular only)



    Does this necessarily derive from a Latin root? I found that "meli-" is a combining form (meaning "honey") from Greek ! Who knows? In order to edit this comment, and in researching the etymology of "miel", my source seems to suggest that it derives (somehow) from "agnellus", the Latin word, but I myself cannot see how, really. (This source reveals that"miel" is also slang for a certain male body part.)


    Can you use it too like in "Hi honey"?


    No. You can use "sweetie" (bună, dragă!)

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