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Re: The cost of time

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Wednesday, February 13, 2002, 16:21
En réponse à "Newton, Philip" <Philip.Newton@...>:

 A versatile prefix which it is hard to pin down a
> meaning > for. >
Well, in Dutch the same prefix is quite transparent in meaning: causative or factitive. So we have "kopen": to buy vs. "verkopen": to sell, "huren": to rent vs. "verhuren": to rent (but as the activity of the owner in this relation). Adjectives can be turned easily into causative verbs with the same prefix: "moe": tired -> vermoeiend (present participle): tiring. Of course, there are oddities, like "tellen": to count, "vertellen": to tell, but those are probably etymologically explanable. On the other hand, the Dutch prefix "be-" is much more difficult to pin down. Until now, I have been unable to give it a precise meaning, for the simple reason that when you have pairs of verbs, one with the prefix and one without, they are translated in French by either one and the same verb, or by two unrelated verbs :)) . How can you give a meaning to such a prefix then :)) . I like the Dutch use of prefixes. Compared to what is done in German, it looks a bit more systematic. Christophe. Take your life as a movie: do not let anybody else play the leading role.


Philip Newton <philip.newton@...>