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    #1

    English words borrowed

    I was musing about those English words that are used in French. Loan-words which have( for some of them) lost their original meanings :Guess what they mean or try to explain their change of construction:

    Un parking:
    un baby-foot
    un talkie-Walkie ( vice walkie-talkiein English) your explanation?
    Un flipper
    flipper ( verb)
    tennisman
    recordman
    un brushing
    motocross

  1. Soup's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: English words borrowed

    [quote=CHOMAT;209350]I was musing about those English words that are used in French. Loan-words which have( for some of them) lost their original meanings :Guess what they mean or try to explain their change of construction:

    Un parking: parking space?
    un baby-foot: small step?
    un talkie-Walkie: cell phone?
    Un flipper: spatula?
    flipper ( verb): to flip something?
    tennisman: ? good-looking guy?
    recordman: ?
    un brushing: ?
    motocross = road?

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    #3

    Re: English words borrowed

    This proves that those loan-words are no more transparent.
    your first guess is nearly good un parking is a car park
    flipper the verb means to be in a blue funk
    a flipper is a game, an electronic game apinball machine ?
    tennisman a tennis player
    un baby-foot a soccer-game a table with small figurines moved by handles .. I can't be more precise
    a recordman someone who has a record in a field (sport)
    un brushing a special hairdress
    motocross= country running motocycles .the name of the discipline
    talkie-walkie is Walkie-talkie in English but why this inversion?

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    #4

    Re: English words borrowed

    "un parking is a car park."
    I actually know that one.

    "flipper the verb means to be in a blue funk."
    What does that mean? (When I was young--I grew up in Montreal--we francophones called the spatula a flipper. )

    "a flipper is a game, an electronic game a pinball machine?"
    Yes, I actually knew that one too, just didn't remember it until now.

    "tennisman a tennis player."
    Oh! What a give-away; so easy. I thought it meant that but chose to think laterally.

    "un baby-foot a soccer-game a table with small figurines moved by handles .. I can't be more precise." Cool.

    "a recordman someone who has a record in a field (sport)."
    Now that stands to reason, well, at least given my memory of having grown up in a French speaking family--when I was young(er).

    "un brushing a special hairdress."
    Yes! I thought it might be something like that, but, you know, it just seemed to easy.

    "motocross= country running motocycles .the name of the discipline. "
    OK. Now I am just embarrassed. It's the same in English.

    "talkie-walkie is Walkie-talkie in English but why this inversion."
    Ah! Now that's a good question, and I don't know the answer, but in the history of language, when a community splits into two--usually over a dispute of some sort, the group that favors separation, the separatists no pun intended, change the language. A case in point, an aboriginal language I documented in grad school. The northern dialect has low tone on words where the southern dialect has high tone. The elders of the community speculated that their ancestors modified the tone puposely, as a way of distinguishing their band from the other band; however, my advisor at the time said that it probably wasn't cause. (He called the phenomenon "tonal flip-flop".) At any rate, whatever the cause, our example talkie-walkie has definitely flip-flopped.

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