Do the Spanish words alabar and alabanza have an Arabic origin?

  • Nomeamas

    New Member
    English - USA
    ¿Tienen las palabras "alabar" y "alabanzas" un origen o una influencia del arabe? / Do the Spanish words "alabar" and "alabanzas" have an Arabic origin or influence?
     

    Nomeamas

    New Member
    English - USA
    Thanks. This seems like a solid answer. I still find it unusual that no other modern Romance languages use a word this close to "Alá" as the most frequent word for "praise", but instead something closer to "laud", though I guess "applaud" or "aplaudir" are related to "laud", and these seem to be related to "alabar." Do you suppose long exposure to Arabic could have influenced the development of the words, or at least their frequency, even if they have an attested Latin origin?
     

    Penyafort

    Senior Member
    Catalan (Catalonia), Spanish (Spain)
    The 'pan-Romance' one is the verb coming from Latin laudare: French louer, Italian lodare, Portuguese louvar, Romanian lauda, Catalan lloar, etc.

    Spanish itself has loar, even if the usage is more restricted. So alabar looks like a loanword or an evolution of a meaning unique to Spanish.

    Loanwords from Arabic are almost always nouns, sometimes adjectives, but verbs and other categories of the language are very rare.

    The word looks like a natural evolution from the Latin alapari. The only problem comes with the explanation of the change in meaning. But I'd say it's a quite plausible origin.
     

    fdb

    Senior Member
    French (France)
    In Latin alapo is a lexical ghost-word. The entry in the linked Spanish etymological dictionary is full of nonsense.
     
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    AndrasBP

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    The entry in the linked Spanish etymological dictionary is full of nonsense.
    Thanks for pointing this out. I guess I should have been more suspicious. Do you mean the part about the ritual punch to a slave?
    The two links in #3 and #6 are in fact the same.
     

    fdb

    Senior Member
    French (France)
    The noun alapa “slap in the face” occurs in classical Latin texts. The verbs alapizo and alapor “to slap someone” occur in post-classical texts. (The phrase nil alapari cited in some dictionaries from Plautus, Truc. 928 is an old scholarly conjecture, not accepted by modern editors. There are no references for alapor in classical Latin). The active verb alapo occurs only in a Latin-Greek glossary. (It is quoted in Georges, but not in Lewis/Short). Even if we accept it as a genuine Latin word it is very difficult to fathom the semantic shift from “slap in the face” to “praise”.

    alapator “braggart” also occurs only in glossaries. Here too the proposed semantic shift seems difficult.
     

    danielstan

    Senior Member
    Romanian - Romania
    There is a nuance in the Latin alapa (noun, feminine), i.e. one of its meaning is: "blow with the open hand" or "slap in the face/cheek with the palm/open hand"

    From this meaning Romanian has aripă (with old variants like: areapă, arapă), which means "wing" ("bird's wing", in its most common usage).
    See: dexonline

    Aromanian has arapitâ ("wing"), too

    I found these other Romance descendants of alapa: alapa - Wiktionary
     
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    Sefardirico

    New Member
    Spanish & English
    The word “alabar” comes from the Latin word “alapari” which means “to boast”.
    Now the word “alabanza“ most likely comes from the same place although you could say it could come from “الله بنذة” or “Allahu bandha“ which
    roughly translates to “God is a blessing” although highly unlikely
     
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