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  1. #1
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    Default Native English roots

    I'm writing a term paper this year about native English roots and the ratio between native words and adopted. I've read that only 30% of Eglish words are native.
    As a practical work I'd like to analise a part of Ivenhoe in the view of ratio between native roots and adopted ones.
    But I wonder what is the best way to do it? I can't just check up the ethymology of every word, there are too many of them in the Ivenhoe=). What to do with the derivatives of foreign roots? Are they consideres to be Enlish or adopted?

    Could you give some advice or useful links?

    Thank you in advance!

  2. #2
    Koka's Avatar
    Koka is offline Junior Member
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    Post Re: Native English roots

    Hi
    If I am understanding right I think I can help you In part of it . I have seen before in one book about this point the author said part of English words are Arabic words and the number too but it changed. So you looking for any references and I aml going to tell you what the book name ..

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Native English roots

    It realy depends on the definition of native roots- how far back are you going to go as your starting point. If you go right back to Anglo-Saxon times, then French and Latin words would be imports. If a word is adopted, then the forms stemming from it would also be adopted.

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    Default Re: Native English roots

    Thanks for your comments, they are really useful. But I still wonder wether it's necessary to make the analyses word by word through all the novel. If there is any special computer programs suitable for such a tasks, I wonder?

  5. #5
    Dr. Jamshid Ibrahim is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Native English roots

    You have to know English is genetically Germanic but due to various invasions especially the Norman invasion, English lost part of its Germanic character such as the case endings. The only ending which is left is the s third person singular. as a result the English word order became a frozen and rigid SPO(subject - Predicate "verb" - object) In addition, lots of French words were borrowed. Germanic heritage is the natural informal register, words of everyday life like: sun, moon, bread, water. These words are usually short and full of energy in comparison with longer (multi-syllabic), quieter and more formal words of Romance origin like: convenient, beautiful. Therefore and as Tdol mentioned the question of what is native English is not easy to answer. Words of Arabic origin are realtively few and restricted to nouns which refer to oriental phenomena apart from a few words which are of both Arabic, Indian and Persian origin such as coffee, tulip, sugar
    Regards
    Jamshid

  6. #6
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    Post Re: Native English roots

    ALLAHS SONNE UBER
    DEM ABENDLAND
    UNSER ARABISCHES ERBE
    Dr.. SIGRID HUNKE

    I think we need a Germany translator..

    good luck.

  7. #7
    Dr. Jamshid Ibrahim is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Native English roots

    This is not a scientific book (by Sigrid Hunke). I speak German and I know the book. You have to see the difference between a book meant for general use and a scientific book based on research. Most of the words labelled of Arab origin could be traced to all other Oriental languages like Persian, Indian, Turkish, Kurdish or even to some Afican languages.... Only a few words are of Arab origin. The author is not a linguist. In addion it is full of Folk etymology. Go to any scientific etymological dictionary to find out.

  8. #8
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    Post Re: Native English roots

    I know my language And I know what the author talking about .she talking about Arabic language and some words from Persian. I donít think you have read this book because it very recognize Ö
    and any scientific etymological dictionary to find out and scientific book based on research I donít have to do it ...
    also you have to know Arabic is the roots for the Turkish and Kurdish because that countries were an Arabic areas. and about Indian, or African languages that sooo far . Only a few words are of Arab origin. I know and I said before a part not all or most of it.

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    Default Re: Native English roots

    By the way, lets come back to the English roots=)
    I've read many times that English language contents about 30% of native roots (or words?), while others are adopted. How it has been calculated, I wonder? Do Linguists just took the dictionary and counted the words, or is it possible to use statistics?

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Native English roots

    Quote Originally Posted by Koka
    also you have to know Arabic is the roots for the Turkish and Kurdish because that countries were an Arabic areas. and about Indian, or African languages that sooo far.
    Koka, every language is influenced by the other languages. Similarly, societies are under the effect of others. That's the law of nature. However, making generalizations without a scientific base is nothing but fallacy. I neither know that book nor speak German, but if you read Ibrahim's answer carefully you can see his point.
    Besides, before you talk about origins of languages I would strongly recommend you do some research. For example, Turkish belongs to the language group called "Ural-Altay". The antecedents of Turks lived in the far east of Asia, an area surrounded by Khingan mountains in the east, Siberia in the north, Hazar sea in the west and Himalaya mountains in the south. The Great Wall of China, for instance, was built to stop Hun invasions. Hun Empire was one of the great Turk empires. So by no means, Arabic language can be the root for Turkish language. There were no geographical connections.
    On the other hand, during the reign of Ottoman Empire, middle east, east of Red sea, north africa and the area up to Vienna was under the control of them, not vice versa. Of course, with the effect of the religion, many words from Arabic and Persian entered the language mixing with Turkish and forming a mixed-language called Ottoman language, which is no longer used, only exists in old literature, and documents. But there are many many words in Turkish now which come from French, English, Greek and even Italian. But that does not mean that these languages are the root of Turkish.
    Why am I telling all these? Not to give a history lesson of course. You can learn history by reading yourself. And there is nothing wrong with one's love for his/her mother tongue. However, when we make assumptions, we must at least find a scietific base to verify the information.
    Last edited by light; 06-Apr-2006 at 07:45.

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