[Deactivated user]
Is there any genuine English word? I watched a video about beautiful words in English. And then, I thought: "is there any English word that wasn't borrowed from any language? I mean, a genuine English word?" Thanks for the comments and help.
Jan 27, 2017 5:30 PM
Answers · 17
As Suki has said, English does have quite a lot of words from Old English, it’s just that they tend not to be the most interesting ones. Actually, a lot of profanity is from Old English, but that would go beyond the scope of this post. Felipe is correct in noting a fundamental difference between English and Portuguese in this respect. Languages like Portuguese and French are descended from Latin, and the vast majority of Portuguese and French words are of Latin origin, or Greek words that had been borrowed into Latin. English, on the other hand, currently has over 1/4 of her present vocabulary from Latin, and another 1/4 from French (which is essentially Latin as well). More recently, English has continued this practice. I believe the willingness of English speakers to “borrow” words from other languages is a great part of what makes English so rich. English doesn’t even have an official language authority. It may be amusing to contrast this to the Royal Academy of the French Language, whose members wear funny green uniforms, carry swords, and are known as “the immortals.” Just in case you think I’m joking: http://www.academie-francaise.fr/les-immortels/lhabit-vert-et-lepee
January 27, 2017
If you mean Anglo-Saxon words - yes, there are a great many. But the Anglo-Saxon words don't tend to be the interesting or the 'beautiful' ones. It's also worth bearing in mind that up to a third of the words in the English language are of French/Latin derivation.
January 27, 2017
This is a very interesting question... I don't think there are any true words of any language. If we discuss history, we can say that languages didn't have borders.. Borders changed and people migrated..
January 27, 2017
I'm not sure what you mean. Can you give me an example of a Portuguese word that wasn't borrowed from another language?
January 27, 2017
Good question Felipe...I wonder how many genuine Portuguese words are there that are not borrowed from another language? :-)
January 27, 2017
Show more
Still haven’t found your answers?
Write down your questions and let the native speakers help you!