Sibling (was: Re: The pitfall of Chinese/Mandarin)
|From:||James Campbell <james@...>|
|Date:||Wednesday, December 12, 2001, 9:13|
Andreas eskrë »
> Imperative wrote:
> >Andreas Johansson wrote:
> >That's another weirdity of learning English in school - they tell you
> >there simply is no direct translation of the Swedish word _syskon_
> >"sibling", and that if you desperately need to translate ie you have
> >to use
> >"brother or sister"
> > >>
> >Wait a moment...? Isn't "sibling" an adequate translation of "brother
> >and sister"? Or is your point that that's how they teach English in
> >schools over there?
> They deny the existence of an English word meaning "sibling".
This has interested me for ages. _Syskon_ and Norwegian _søsken_ are
commonly-used words, if I understand correctly. (Although _søsken_ is
plural: "brothers and sisters".) However, the English word "sibling" is not
really that common; it has a literary feel, and most British English
speakers would say "brothers and sisters" in conversation rather than the
rather bookish "siblings".
When I was learning German at school, we were taught that _Geschwister_
means "brothers and sisters", and we thought it was cool to have a word for
that. The word "sibling[s]" was never mentioned.
ObConlang: Unsurprisingly, Jameld has no equivalent for
syskon/søsken/sibling[s] -- it just slipped through the net, and _brothar_
and _setstar_ would be used. However, the word _siba_ exists, meaning
"relation, kin" as a noun, and "related, kin" as an adjective. [Source: Old
Frisian sibbe; cf. arch. English sib, High German Sippe "clan, kin". OE
sibling meant "relative".]
Thought: is English "kin" related to _syskon_/_søsken_?
firstname.lastname@example.org James Campbell Zeugma--Our Life Is Design www.zolid.com
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