Interesting Words (moved from Games)

Ybytyruna

Civis Illustris

I'm curious about this word's etymology, but it doesn't seem to be known. I found a wild discussion about it here (tl;dr: someone claimed it was a Greek borrowing without stating which Greek word it was supposed to be from; others said it might be from Egyptian, Akkadian or other exotic stuff — at the end of the day, nothing remotely conclusive).

It was borrowed into Spanish and Portuguese as Fulano (earlier Foão in Portuguese, displaced by the Spanish version).
As a Brazilian Portuguese speaker: when we're using a series of three placeholder names, it's not uncommon to say or hear: "Fulano, sicrano e beltrano". Some even pronounce "sicrano" as "siclano" (but this is regarded as incorrect). I already knew this word has an Arabic origin, but I didn't know about the controversy of its' etymology.
 

Ybytyruna

Civis Illustris
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Piraja* (ſive etiam piraya ſive piranha) eſt nomen vulgare cujuſdam generis piſcis, qui ab hominibus naturæ inveſtigatoribus appellatur Pygocentrus, abundantis multis in fluminibus Braſilicis, cujus dentes acutiſſimi voracitaſque formidinem injiciunt omnibus, inde a temporibus antiquioribus. Ab autochthonibus Braſilice loquentibus appellabatur pirãîa (/pi’rãɲa/) (ſcribitur quoque piranha, verbum hactenus uſitatiſſimum apud Braſilianos omnes Luſitanice loquentes, a quo originem ducit vocabulum Anglicum), quod verbum diſjungi poteſt in duas partes, quarum prima pirá ‘piſcem’ ſignificat, altera tamen (t)ãia (vel (t)anha) ‘dentem/dentes’ (ſignificans ergo piſcem dentatum).

Anno milleſimo quingenteſimo duodequinquageſimo, Georgius Marcgrave et Gulielmus Piſo hoc modo deſcripſerunt hunc voraciſſimum piſcem: “[piſcis cui nomen eſt piraja* habet dentes] quibus uno morſu partem carnis ex quacunque parte hominis poteſt abripere, quaſi novacula eſſet abſciſſa. Si quis ingrediatur aquam vel ſaltem immittat pedem vel manum ſtatim ab illo lædi poteſt, ita ſitiens eſt sanguinis & cupiens carnis humanæ, quare caute ab illo cavendum.”

Demum, in lingua Luſitanica, Anglicum conſilium verbi scapegoat exprimi poteſt per locutionem boi de piranha (verbum de verbo: bos pirajarum), quia interdum paſtores, volentes tute tranſire rivum pirajarum* plenum, in aquam conducunt bovem jam ætate provectum, vel aliquo morbo affectum, qui voretur ab his piſcibus, quo, voracitate ſua ſanguinaria diſtracti, ignorent paſtores ceteroſque boves illac tranſeuntes.
 
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Glabrigausapes

Jive Turkey
Indicus deus Agni habet nomen pulcrum atque sollemne jātavēdas, id est ‘cui est scientia (omnium) natorum’, propterea quod mortuos cremando confert eos victum apud deos.
 

Glabrigausapes

Jive Turkey
I also can’t help but add devadryañc ‘godward, turned toward god(s)’

RV 1.93 has:
यो अग्नीसोमा हविषा सपर्याद्देवद्रीचा मनसा...
‘Who-so sacrifices to Agni-Soma with godward mind...’
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
This is mildly interesting for being the (somewhat obscure, I think, since I've only now come across it for the first time as far as I remember) etymological doublet of "profile":

Purfle.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
It's a great word. I need to use it in a poem one day.
 

EstQuodFulmineIungo

Auditor et Discipulus
I just took the italian adjective "aulico" and turned it into English, hoping it existed in this language too :D
Now I checked, and yes, luckily it exists. In Italian, however, the last one that used it on a daily basis was probably Dante.
Glad that you liked it by BTW
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I knew it in Latin (aulicus) but not in any other language. It apparently came into English via French.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
It's originally Greek (I thought so but I had to check).
 

Glabrigausapes

Jive Turkey
The foremost meaning of Chinese 曉 xiao is 'dawn', but the second is 'know/understand'. Cool by itself, but it reminds one of the English phrase 'it dawned on me (belatedly :hat: )'.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
It's nice to find similarities like this in languages that have nothing to do with each other.
 

Glabrigausapes

Jive Turkey
'Indyubitableh', as the Brits say it.

But maybe 'nothing to do' is rather 'exceedingly little to do', because I just seent on wiktionary that the Sino-Tibetan for 'cart' may well be a gift from Indo-European (via Tocharian). See this useful entry.
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

μεσσηγυδορποχέστης
I like the mental picture of generous Tocharians helping inarticulate Sino-Tibetans out, trundling around with them but unable to think up a suitable name.
 

Glabrigausapes

Jive Turkey
Well, the latter gave us 'tea' and 'chai', so it's an even trade by my book.
 

Issacus Divus

H₃rḗǵs h₁n̥dʰéri diwsú
Don’t think I mentioned this before, but the Gothic þiudans for ruler reflects the whole people kin thing.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
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