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Re: Scandinavian languages, Danish, articles

From:BP Jonsson <bpj@...>
Date:Wednesday, August 20, 2003, 9:03
At 13:38 19.8.2003 -0400, Isidora Zamora wrote:

>>No. There are a few real bad false friends tho, like >>rolig, værelse, væske, taske. > >What's wrong with rolig? (Of course, I had the opportunity to simply >absorb all the semantics of this word by hearing it used very frequently in >all sorts of different contexts)
It's just that _rolig_ for some reason means "funny" in Swedish (while _orolig_ still means "anxious, restless"...)
>Værelse I can understand the problem with. It looks like it ought to mean >"being" and it really means "room."
And Sw. _varelse_ actually means "being" (e.g. _rymdvarelse_ "space alien"). As for Swedish _väska_ it means the same as Danish _taske_, while _taske_ sounds like Swedish _taskig_ "rotten, lousy, mean" (not to venture into four-letter words...)
>Do you know when the definite and indefinite articles came into their >present forms?
The definite article is still not found in viking-age runic inscriptions, but was probably present in the spoken language. In 12th century texts in Latin script the indefinite is already obligatory, but still clearly a clitic with its own full inflection beside that of the head noun. Icelandic still preserves this state of affairs, e.g. _hestsins_ "of the horse". The modern reduced forms of the definite (_hästens_) are found in Swedish from around 1600, and about a century earlier in Danish. The written language certainly lagged behind. The modern indefinite developed gradually between the 12th and 15th centuries. Icelandic still hasn't got it: _einn hestur_ still means "a single horse" in Icelandic. /BP 8^) -- B.Philip Jonsson (delete X) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~__ A h-ammen ledin i phith! \ \ __ ____ ____ _____________ ____ __ __ __ / / \ \/___ \\__ \ /___ _____/\ \\__ \\ \ \ \\ \ / / / / / / / \ / /Melroch\ \_/ // / / // / / / / /___/ /_ / /\ \ / /Gaestan ~\_ // /__/ // /__/ / /_________//_/ \_\/ /Eowine __ / / \___/\_\\___/\_\ Gwaedhvenn Angeliniel\ \______/ /a/ /_h-adar Merthol naun ~~~~~~~~~Kuinondil~~~\________/~~\__/~~~Noolendur~~~~~~ || Lenda lenda pellalenda pellatellenda kuivie aiya! || "A coincidence, as we say in Middle-Earth" (JRR Tolkien)