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Shared vocabulary of Italian, German, and Russian

 Language Learning Forum : Philological Room Post Reply
24 messages over 3 pages: 1 2 3  Next >>
albysky
Triglot
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 Message 1 of 24
29 May 2013 at 7:44pm | IP Logged 
Does Italian share more vocabulary with German or russian ? Could you give me a rough
percentage ?
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Serpent
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 Message 2 of 24
29 May 2013 at 9:14pm | IP Logged 
maybe 20% with German and 10% with Russian? just a guess. I'd say that with both languages, English will give you a more significant advantage than your native language.
BTW Polish has more Latin and German loans than Russian.
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Volte
Tetraglot
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Switzerland
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 Message 3 of 24
29 May 2013 at 9:14pm | IP Logged 
Italian shares more vocabulary with German. The percentage isn't particularly high with either language - most shared vocabulary is borrowed from other languages (like English, Latin, and Greek), or has shared Indo-European roots but has undergone significant sound shifts (for instance, brother/frato/bruder/брат (brat)). For the latter, I recommend "The Loom of Languages" as a good introduction.

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Марк
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 Message 4 of 24
29 May 2013 at 9:46pm | IP Logged 
Volte wrote:
Italian shares more vocabulary with German.

Why does it happen?
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hrhenry
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 Message 5 of 24
29 May 2013 at 10:26pm | IP Logged 
Марк wrote:
Volte wrote:
Italian shares more vocabulary with German.

Why does it happen?

Historically, there's been much more contact between Italy and ancient Rome and Germanic
peoples than there was between Italy and Russia. I would imagine that has a lot to do
with it.

R.
==
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Cabaire
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Germany
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 Message 6 of 24
30 May 2013 at 12:16am | IP Logged 
I think, apart from technological terminology, the overlap between Russian and Italian is quite low, especially in literature.

If I take one page from the fantasy novel, I am just reading (Night watch), there are 266 words. This novel uses a modern style, where you find more internationalisms than in a more traditional style

An Italian might understand:

- станция (well, it means station, but Italian stanza means chamber)
- амулет 3x: amuleto
- знергия: energia
- термометр: termometro
- интеллект: inteletto
- вагон 2x: vagone
- металл: metallo
- бетон: beton
- структура: struttura
- эффект: effetto
- мигрень: emicrania

13 from 266 are 5 %.

If you take a text about computers, the quota is certainly higher, but in fictional texts I guess 3%-5% is the most you will get without learning slavic vocablulary.


Edited by Cabaire on 30 May 2013 at 2:35am

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Volte
Tetraglot
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 Message 7 of 24
30 May 2013 at 12:34am | IP Logged 
I second what Cabaire says, but some high-frequency words do become obvious (at least in retrospect) once you know about sound shifts and have a bit of a feeling for etymology. A lot of family terms fit into this category; so do some numbers (due/two/zwei/два (dva), tre/three/drei/три (tri)), etc. These similarities are uncommon enough that they're not much use in predicting words, but can certainly make them easier to recognize and remember.

Марк: I don't know why, exactly. I do get the impression that there has been more cultural and intellectual contact between German and Latin (and between the Romance and Germanic languages in general) than between the Romance and/or Germanic languages and the Slavic ones. Call it an accident of history and geography, just like how Russian is closer to English than, say, Persian and Hindi are, despite the shared roots of all of them.

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Serpent
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 Message 8 of 24
30 May 2013 at 10:04am | IP Logged 
Cabaire wrote:
- станция (well, it means station, but Italian stanza means chamber)
there's also stazione :)

Edited by Serpent on 30 May 2013 at 10:05am



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