grandchild, grandparent

Welsh_Sion

New Member
Welsh - Northern
I recently had to translate the above into my mother tongue of Welsh. We don't have these terms so I had to refer to the equivalent of grandson/grand-daughter' and 'grandmother/grandfather.' Similarly for 'grandchildren' they would be 'grandsons and grand-daughters' and 'grandparents' who are 'grandmothers and 'grandfathers'. Is it only English which has the special non-sex related terms '-child' and '-parent' in this case?

(Incidentally, North Welsh uses different terms for 'grandfather' ('taid') and 'grandmother' ('nain') from Southern Welsh. These being 'tad-cu' and 'mam-gu' respectively in the South.)

Thanks for any comments.
 
  • apmoy70

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Greek does have sex-related terms for the grandparents, and the grandchildren (since Greek is one of the languages in the IE family that has the nouns endings change accoring to gender, it's almost impossible to have non-gender related nouns):
    Grandparents: «Παππούδες» [paˈpu.ðes] (masc. nom. pl.) --> lit. grandfathers (if a group has mixed gender, the masculine form is used for the collective plural, since antiquity), for its etymology check further below.
    Grandchildren: «Εγγόνια» [eŋˈgɔ.ɲa] (neut. nom. pl.), or «εγγονοί» [eŋ.gɔˈni] (masc. nom. pl.), for its etymology check below.
    Grandfather: «Παππούς» [paˈpus] (masc.) < Byz.Gr. masc. noun «πάππους» páppous (idem) < Classical masc. noun «πάππος» pắppŏs (masc.) --> grandfather, ancestor, which is onomatopoeic, a reduplicated nursery word.
    Grandmother: «Γιαγιά» [ʝaˈʝa] (fem.) which is a reduplicated nursery word (dialectal variants «νόννη» [ˈnɔ.ni] (fem.), «νόνα» [ˈnɔ.na] (fem.), «λαλά» [laˈla] (fem.), «μάμμη» [ˈma.mi] (fem.) etc).
    In ancient Greek it was «μάμμη» mắmmē a nursery word, from reduplicated «μάμμα» mắmmă (fem.) and hyporistic «μαμμίᾱ» mămmíā (fem.) --> mother, mother's breast.
    Grandson: «Εγγονός» [eŋ.gɔˈnɔs] (masc.) < Classical masc. noun «ἔγγονος» éngŏnŏs (idem), which is the compound of the prefix & preposition «ἐκ» ĕk + masc./fem. «γόνος» gónŏs with assimilation; «ἔκγονος/ἔγγονος» literally means offspring.
    Grand-daughter: «Εγγονή» [eŋ.gɔˈni] (fem.) which is the modern feminine form of «εγγονός».
    In ancient Greek both grandson and grand-daughter were «ἔγγονος» éngŏnŏs as it's a noun of the 2nd declension, which means it has identical masculine & feminine forms.

    Edit: Adding parents:
    Parent(s): «Γονέας» [ɣɔˈne.as] (masc. nom. sing.), «γονείς» [ɣɔˈnis] (masc. nom. pl.) < Classical 3rd declension deverbative noun «γονεύς» gŏneú̯s (masc. nom. sing.), «γονέως» gŏnéōs (masc. gen. sing.), «γονῆς/γονεῖς» gŏnês or gŏneî̯s (masc. nom. pl.) < Classical deponent v. «γίγνομαι» gígnŏmai̯.
     
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    Yendred

    Senior Member
    Français - France
    In French:

    grandparents:
    le grand-parent, les grands-parents
    le grand-père, les grands-pères
    la grand-mère, les grand(s)-mères
    (but not les grandes-mères :cross: )

    grandchildren:
    le petit-enfant(*), les petits-enfants
    le petit-fils, les petits-fils
    la petite-fille, les petites-filles


    (*) The singular, although correct, is not so common, as it can be easily confused with "petit enfant" (without hyphen) = little child.
    For singular, we prefer to use petit-fils and/or petite-fille.
     
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    Welsh_Sion

    New Member
    Welsh - Northern
    So … Greek doesn't have 'grandparent' or 'grandchild' (like Welsh) and French is identical to English (with the proviso that 'petit-enfant' is rare).

    Correct?

    Thanks for the help so far.
     

    Yendred

    Senior Member
    Français - France
    and French is identical to English (with the proviso that 'petit-enfant' is rare).
    and "a grandchild" is not "un grand-enfant" :cross: but "un petit-enfant",
    although "a grandparent" is indeed "un grand-parent" ;)

    By the way, about English and French, I don't know where these words (with grand or petit prefixes) come from, as Latin words have nothing to do with them (avus/avia, nepos/neptis).
    Spanish is closer to Latin (abuelo/a, nieto/a), I guess Italian must be as well.
    What about German?
     
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    apmoy70

    Senior Member
    Greek
    So … Greek doesn't have 'grandparent' or 'grandchild' (like Welsh) and French is identical to English (with the proviso that 'petit-enfant' is rare).

    Correct?

    Thanks for the help so far.
    Greek doesn't have 'grandparent', it does have 'grandchild' well it's not grandchild per se, it's 'offspring'. The word for grandchild/-children is different from the person's offspring (if you know what I mean :rolleyes: no pun intended)

    Edit: Ah, I see what you mean, yes the word for grandchild is either grandson or grand-daughter, you're right
     

    Yendred

    Senior Member
    Français - France
    Grandson: «Εγγονός» [eŋ.gɔˈnɔs] (masc.) < Classical masc. noun «ἔγγονος» éngŏnŏs
    This word is cognate with French engendrer (to breed), through Latin ingenerare.
    γόνος, gene, gonade, generation, and equivalent cognates seem to all come from an Indo-European root: gen (= to bear)
     
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    AndrasBP

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    Is it only English which has the special non-sex related terms '-child' and '-parent' in this case?
    Hungarian, although completely unrelated, is like English in this respect:
    we use the word "nagyszülő" for "grandparent" (nagy = big/great, szülő = parent, from the verb "szül" = to give birth) and
    unoka (a Slavic loanword) for "grandchild".
     

    Welsh_Sion

    New Member
    Welsh - Northern
    Yendred,

    Thanks for your commentary. I hope you didn't misunderstand me when I rather lazily used the words 'identical to English'. What I meant was, that like English, there is an equivalent for 'grandchild' (= 'petit-enfant') and an equivalent for 'grandparent' ( = 'grand-parent'). However, we are also agreed that 'petit-enfant' is actually rare in French.

    Welsh words for the 'grand-(+ family member)' and the French 'petit(e)-(+ family member)' also are standalones in the way Spanish and Latin are (i.e. no prefixes). You have already met 'taid/tad-cu' for 'grandfather' and 'nain/mam-gu' for 'grandmother'. Now meet, 'Grandson' who is '[FONT=Times New Roman, serif]ŵyr' and 'Grand-daughter' who is 'wyres'.

    Again
    , there is no 'common' plural (i.e. 'grand-children'): 'wyrion' (if all 'grandsons'), 'wyresau' (if all 'grand-daughters') and 'wyrion a wyresau' (for 'grandchildren' of both sexes).[/FONT]

    [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]As for 'gen' to bear, no need to go into exhaustive detail for English, but 'geni' is Welsh for 'to be born' and our passive construction is:

    'Cefais fy ngeni' - Received-I my birthing = I was born.[/FONT]
     

    symposium

    Senior Member
    Italian - Italy
    Italian is the only language that I know that makes no difference between grandchildren and nephews/nieces. We only have the word nipote/nipoti for all of them. Of course, this can often lead to confusion, or at least uncertainty; in that case, we have to specify "nipote di nonno (grandfather's nipote = grandchild)" or "nipote di zio (uncle's nipote = nephew/niece)". Sometimes we say "She's his nipote" and of course they may ask "Is he her grand-dad or her uncle?" to which we answer accordingly...
     

    Dymn

    Senior Member
    As far as I know, there are no (colloquial) genderless family terms in either Catalan or Spanish. As with all other things in Romance languages, the masculine gender is used as a default:

    Catalan
    grandparents: avi (m), àvia (f), avis (pl)
    parents: pare (m), mare (f), pares (pl)
    children: fill (m), filla (f), fills (pl)
    grandchildren: nét (m), néta (f), néts (pl)
    siblings: germà (m), germana (f), germans (pl)
    cousins: cosí (m), cosina (f), cosins (pl)
    etc.

    Spanish
    grandparents: abuelo (m), abuela (f), abuelos (pl)
    parents: padre (m), madre (f), padres (pl)
    children: hijo (m), hija (f), hijos (pl)
    grandchildren: nieto (m), nieta (f), nietos (pl)
    siblings: hermano (m), hermana (f), hermanos (pl)
    cousins: primo (m), prima (f), primos (pl)
    etc.
     
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    Awwal12

    Senior Member
    Russian
    I recently had to translate the above into my mother tongue of Welsh. We don't have these terms so I had to refer to the equivalent of grandson/grand-daughter' and 'grandmother/grandfather.' Similarly for 'grandchildren' they would be 'grandsons and grand-daughters' and 'grandparents' who are 'grandmothers and 'grandfathers'. Is it only English which has the special non-sex related terms '-child' and '-parent' in this case?

    (Incidentally, North Welsh uses different terms for 'grandfather' ('taid') and 'grandmother' ('nain') from Southern Welsh. These being 'tad-cu' and 'mam-gu' respectively in the South.)

    Thanks for any comments.
    Russian generically uses "grandsons" (pl. внуки - vnúki) for "grandchildren" (as long as their gender doesn't matter), and has no non-descriptive word for grandparents at all (прародители - prarodíteli - actually means just "ancestors", and it's a rather bookish word).
     

    jazyk

    Senior Member
    Brazílie, portugalština
    Portuguese:
    grandparents: avô (m), avó (f), avós (pl)
    parents: pai (m), mãe (f), pais (pl)
    children: filho (m), filha (f), filhos (pl)
    grandchildren: neto (m), neta (f), netos (pl)
    siblings: irmão (m), irmã (f), irmãos (pl)
    cousins: primo (m), prima (f), primos (pl)
    etc.

    The cool thing is that os avôs, os being the masculine plural definite article, means the grandfathers, whereas os avós refers to the grandparents. If you say as avós, with the feminine plural definite article, it is the grandmothers.
     

    Sardokan1.0

    Senior Member
    Sardu / Italianu
    Italian
    grandparents: nonno (m), nonna (f), nonni (pl)
    parents: padre (m), madre (f), padri/madri (pl)
    children: figlio (m), figlia (f), figli (pl)
    grandchildren: nipote (m), nipote (f), nipoti (pl)
    siblings: fratello (m), sorella (f), fratelli (pl)
    cousins: cugino (m), cugina (f), cugini (pl)


    Sardinian
    grandparents: yàyu (m), yàya (f), yàyos (pl) (many people use "nonnu or nonna", from Italian, while in Sardinian they mean "godfather, godmother", from Greek "νονός nonós")
    parents: babbu (m), mama (f), babbos/mamas (pl)
    children: fizu (m), fiza (f), fizos (pl)
    grandchildren: nepode (m), netta (f), nepodes/nettas (pl)
    siblings: frade (m), sorre (f), frades/sorres (pl)
    cousins: fradíle (m), sorrasta (f), fradíles/sorrastas (pl) (we also use to say "hermane primarzu" = first/primary cousin; clearly derived from Spanish)
     

    Welsh_Sion

    New Member
    Welsh - Northern
    Спасибо, Awwal12.

    I'm not here to moderate this, but interesting as all the other terms are, and I'm sure we are learning a lot from the posts, my initial question was quite limited in scope.
     

    Zareza

    Senior Member
    Romanian
    Romanian
    1.
    bunici = grandparents
    bunic, bunici = grandfather, grandfathers (M sg., pl.) - doi bunici tineri= two young grandfathers
    bunică, bunici = grandmother, grandmothers (F sg., pl.) - două bunici tinere= two young grandmothers

    (< bun (= good) + -ic / -ică = diminutive suffix with affective-appreciative nuance)

    2.
    tata-mare (father-big) = (familiar) grandfather
    mama-mare (mother-big) = (familiar) grandmother

    3.
    tataia = (familiar) grandfather
    mamaia = (familiar) grandmother

    4.
    tata-moșu' / moșu' (father-old man / old man) = grandfather

    2., 3. & 4. are used mostly in the rural area. The plural is not in use, in fact it barely exists in dictionaries.

    Italian is the only language that I know that makes no difference between grandchildren and nephews/nieces.
    It is the same in Romanian.

    nepot, nepoți (M sg., pl.)
    nepoată, nepoate (F sg., pl.)
     
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    bibax

    Senior Member
    Czech (Prague)
    Czech uses the prefix pra- (prapra-, praprapra-, ..., praprapraprapraprapraprapra- :) , etc.), cf. Russian прародители /prarodíteli/.

    rodiče (masc.) = parents, Rus. родители /rodíteli/;
    prarodiče = grandparents (děd + bába = grandfather + grandmother);
    praprarodiče = great-grandparents (praděd + prabába = great-grandfather + great-grandmother);
    prapraprarodiče = great-great-grandparents (prapraděd + praprabába);
    ...
    Note: unlike in English the number of pra-'s does not correspond :(;

    As for grandchildren, we use generally vnuci (= grandsons, like in Russian), pravnuci = great-grandsons, etc.
    We rarely say praděti (= grandchildren, děti = children), it's probably a calque.
     
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    nimak

    Senior Member
    Macedonian
    In Macedonian it is same or similar with Russian and Czech.

    There is a "collective" word for parents only, but not for grandparents.

    parents = родители (roditeli) lit. rodi(verb; "gave birth")-tel(deverbative nominalizing suffix)-i(suffix for plural)
    grandparents = баба и дедо (baba i dedo) "grandmother and grandfather"
    grandsons; nephews = внуци (vnuci)

    "ancestors" = прародители (praroditeli)
    great-grandparents = прабаба и прадедо (prababa i pradedo) "great-grandmother and great-grandfather"
    great-grandsons; great-nephews = правнуци (pravnuci)

    great-great-grandparents = прапрабаба и прапрадедо (praprababa i prapradedo) "great-great-grandmother and great-great-grandfather"
    great-great-grandsons; great-great-nephews = праправнуци (prapravnuci)

    The versions with пра- (pra-) can be also spelled like, for example: пра-правнуци, пра-пра-внуци etc.

    мајка (majka) "mother"; татко (tatko) "father"; баба (baba) "grandmother"; дедо (dedo) "grandfather"
     

    kaverison

    Member
    Tamil
    In Tamil, we don't have separate gender neutral word for Grandparents or Grandchildren. So, our usage is similar to Welsh in this sense.

    We have gender specific words -
    தாத்தா - thaththa = grandpa, பாட்டி - paatti = grandma,
    பேரன் - pEran = grandson, பேத்தி - pEtthi = grand daughter

    We always use thaththa, paatti = grandpa/grandma, pEran/pEththi = grandson/grand daughter to mean grandparents, grandchildren.

    ---------------------------------------

    As an aside, pEran/pEththi literally means that which bears the name (of grandpa/ma). That used to be the tradition to name a grandson with Grandfather's name and Grand Daughter with Grandma's name.

    In modern terms, we use a word பேரக் குழ்ந்தைகள்/பேரப்பசங்க - pErak kuzhandhaikaL/pErappasanga = name bearing (Grand) child to give a gender neutral meaning
    pasanga is a colloquial form for paiyankaL - boys, but as used is becoming gender neutral term.

    In Tamil, parents are referred as,

    அப்பா - appaa, தந்தை/தாதை - thanthai/thaathai = Father
    அம்மா - ammaa, ஆத்தா - aaththaa, தாய் - thaay = mother

    I think, the word for grandpa - தாத்தா - thaththa comes from thaathai thathai = father's father.
    I am still trying to figure how the word Paatti for Grandma came.

    Other forms lead to other local words for grand parents (in various dialects in Tamil)
    அம்மம்மா - ammammaa and so on - mother's mother
    அப்பம்மா, அப்பத்தா - appaththaa and so on - father's mother

    In Modern Tamil, we have a common word for parent - பெற்றோர் - petROr - those who gave birth

    மூதோர் mUthOr, மூத்தோர் mUththOr - elders
    முன்னோர் - munnOr = ancestors

    Son is (aaN - ஆண்) piLLai - பிள்ளை (colloquially பிள்ள - piLLa
    and daughter is peN - பெண் (colloquially பொண்ணு - poNNu) (sometimes referred as peN piLLai - பெண் பிள்ளை).
    So, often we use piLLai, peN (பிள்ளை, பெண்) to refer children (as in offspring)

    The more I write, I see such twin/couplet or multiple words are very common in Tamil.

    I can't stop wondering about the Romanian words.
     

    Piloto80

    New Member
    Ireland - Irish & English
    Irish also has gender neutral terms for these, Welsh_Sion.

    grandparents:
    seantuismitheoir, seantuismitheoirí (nominative single and plural respectively)
    seanathair, seanaithreacha (grandfather/grandfathers)
    seanmháthair, seanmháithreacha (grandmother/grandmothers)

    The prefix "sean-" equates to old and would be cognate with "hen" in Welsh.


    grandchildren:
    garpháiste, garpháistí (grandchild/grandchildren)
    garmhac, garmhic (grandson/grandsons)
    gariníon, gariníonacha (granddaughter/granddaughters)

    The prefix "gar-" equates to close/near.
     
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