Thank you. Robbie. I don't see a reason why this thread should be closed. Maybe they were in the wrong forum. I am just interested in some basic words, commonly used, not necessarily the whole vocabulary.
Thank you Robbi. This is very interesting. Do you feel like there are a lot of words of Slavic origin in Romanian or just some sporadic loans?
I wonder, is a distinction made between words that are originally part of the language and loanwords? For example, are "Mersi" (from French Merci) and Adorabil (from French "Adorable") counted as Romanian words of Latin origin?
Hulalessar, this article has been criticised for being strongly influenced by the political atmosphere of the 1950's which was excessively Soviet friendly.
I don't believe that in happend this way.... When it comes to basic words like a iubi "to love", the logic explanation is that the Latin verb amō was far too close to the Romanian verb a avea "to have" (< lat. hăbēre), which is declined as (eu) am. Linguists presume that many Latin words were present in early Romanian, but disappeared early on because of their propensity of being confusing. The solution was to adopt words that weren't prone to confusion, and since Romania was and still is bordered by mostly Slavic speaking people the source of these words is natural
It's possible, but it's interesting that in most of the romance languages we have the continuation of the Latin pater and not tata. On the other hand, tata, ata, atta etc. exist independently in other languages, too.... For instance: tata is derived from latin tata and only coincides with the Slavic counterpart.
Could you present the transformation chain?
By the way, the Welsh hypothese (from Welsh ‘tad’) is another possibility.
According to Wikipedia (the English version), about 14% of Romanian words are of Slavic origin and about 38% of French and Italian origin:
"Since the 19th century, many modern words were borrowed from the other Romance languages, especially from French and Italian (for example: birou "desk, office", avion "airplane", exploata "exploit"). It was estimated that about 38% of the number of words in Romanian are of French and/or Italian origin (in many cases both languages)..."
(There is also a minor number of German, Hungarian, Turkish anf Greek loan words)
I don't believe that in happend this way.
Some Slavic words may have been also entered the Romanian as "religious terms", e.g. (from the Lord's prayer):
Şi ne iartă nouă greşelile noastre, precum şi noi iertăm greşiţilor noştri; Şi nu ne duce pe noi în ispită, ci ne izbăveşte de cel rău.
(I don't know the origin of Şi, iartă, ci and rău)
In Bulgarian, one of the words for father is tatko.Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find a suitable transformation chain. However the DEX entry provides us with the Latin origin because of older forms (archaic tatâne), its presence in related languages (tato in several Italian dialects) and the declension of the word which does not coincide with the way Slavic words are declined.
The same article also estimates that between 75-85 % of modern day Romanian is directly or indirectly of Latin origin.
When it comes to basic words like "to love", the logic explanation is that the Latin verb was far too close to the Romanian verb "to have" (< lat. hăbēre), which is declined as (eu) am. Linguists presume that many Latin words were present in early Romanian, but disappeared early on because of their propensity of being confusing. The solution was to adopt words that weren't prone to confusion, and since Romania was and still is bordered by mostly Slavic speaking people the source of these words is natural.
I know very little about Romanian, so I apologise if I'm completely wrong, but even that 1st person singular present form (verbs are conjugated, by the way, not declined ) of a avea looks like it could be Slavic influence. In classical Latin the 1st person singular present indicative tense of habere is habeo, while habeam is its equivalent in the conjunctive. In fact, the only verb I can think of with -m in the ending for 1st person singular present indicative is esse ~ sum ("to be") with its derivatives, such as posse ~ possum ("to be able to"), but even this has been replaced by the regular ending in Romanian and other Romance languages. The ending -m could have been analogically taken from some other indicative and all conjunctive tenses, but as far as I know, this didn't happen in any other Romance languages or for verbs other than a avea in Romanian. In Proto-Slavic, on the other hand, the equivalent of "to have" -- iměti -- was one of the several verbs with the athematic ending -mь for the 1st person singular present: imamь.
Anyway, my conclusion is that Romance- and Slavic-speaking communities on the territory of present-day Romania must have been very close to each other and communicated frequently. I don't find it likely that the idea was "these two words are too similar, let's see what words people in neighbouring countries have".
Also worth noticing is that the meanings have changed as well. For instance grijă (< Bulgarian) had the original meaning of "dysentery" and a lovi (< Slavic) meant "to capture, to hunt".
Two observations concerning the verb amare (to love):
1. In Romanian we have a iubi, while in Spanish and Italian, the Latin "amare" continues to exist, but on the other hand we have "innovative" solutions, too: Italian ti voglio bene (I love you, lit. "I want good to you", from Lat. "velle" and "bene") and Spanish te quiero (I love you, lit. "I want you", from Lat. "quaerere").
Actually, "suto" doesn't exist: the Old Church Slavonic (10th century) has sъto, whereas reconstructed Late Common Slavic (around the 7th century) had *suta, so the Romanian word looks ideally reflecting the pre-Church Slavonic stage.Romanian: suta < slavic suto; some linguists do not agree).
The most probable Romanian version of the Latin centum would have been ciânt or țânt (analogy with: lat. ventum > rom. vânt = "wind"). Its plural form would have been cinte / ciânturi or țânte / țânturi.
The numeral "five" (Romanian: cinci) is very close as pronounciation to the above hypothetical words, so it is very probable the Romanians have imported the Slavic suto for "hundred" to avoid confusions.
These again are pre-Church Slavonic borrowings, from Late Common Slavic *balta and *dalta (cp. the Finnish taltta from the same source and the cognate of borrowed Prussian dalbtan). In short, the Late Common Slavic *a, *i, *u > Old Church Slavonic o, ь, ъ; Late Common Slavic *ā, *ī, *ū > Old Church Slavonic a, i, y. Ancient Slavic loanwords (6–8th centuries) to Greek, Romanian, Albanian and Finnic still preserve these a, i and u. The very word sclavī/Slavs vs. the attested Slavic slověne reflects this earlier a… I somehow can't find in the literature I have checked the Romanian words borrowed from the later Slavic o-neutra, only those from e-neutra: vreme, vrabie, though I agree, they had to be borrowed either as feminines with the ă-ending, or masculines with the zero-ending.Historically Romanian does not have words ending in -o (I don't remember any from the old vocabulary, while the Romanian words ending in -o that I remember are definitely neologisms).
So I guess the later Slavic sto was regarded as different than Romanian sută at that time.
The Slavic words ending in -o have been imported generally with a -ă ending (mark of feminine gender), e.g. old slavic blato > rom. baltă, old sl. dlato > rom. daltă.
That can be also compared with the enrichment of literary Bulgarian with Church Slavonic and Russian words in the 19th century accompanied with the cleansing of the standard language from the Turkish loanwords. Lithuanian had huge amounts of Slavic borrowings until the 19th century: 99% of these were thoroughly exempted from the standard language by the revivalists — what distinguishes the Lithuanian situation is that they quite successfully have managed to replace the loanwords with properly Lithuanian neologisms.P.S.
The re-latinization of Romanian was a process promoted by our intellectuals since few centuries. I think it started from 18th century by Romanian intellectuals from Transylvania (part of the Austro-Hungary at that time), as a mean in their political struggle for national awakening and for self-determination (autonomy and later separatism from Austro-Hungary).
Later the intellectuals from Wallachia and Moldova (unified as Romania since 1861) have continued the idea of re-latinization having in mind the unification of Romania with Transylvania and with Bessarabia (part of Russian Empire). France was the Western country which supported the most these territorial claims.
During communist regime there was a first phase of obedience to Moscow (1945 - 1964) where Russian was imposed in schools as almost mandatory foreign language, while after 1965 (Ceausescu's regime) Russian language was less taught and the loanwords came mostly from French and American English.
After 1989 the re-latinization has slowed down (most loanwords are coming from American English).
Last noticeable effort was made in 1993 when there was an orthographic reform:
- letter î become â inside the words (usually the Romanian words containing â have an a in their Latin version, e.g. rom. păgân < lat. paganus)
- the conjugation of the verb a fi ("to be") was changed in writing and in pronounciation as:
eu sînt > eu sunt (Latin: ego sum); noi sîntem > noi suntem; voi sînteți > voi sunteți; ei/ele sînt > ei / ele sunt
The historical version (according to the phonetic rules and attested in Medieval writings) is: eu sunt.
Today in private speech I hear and I use "eu sînt", while on TV the official speeches use "eu sunt".
I see similar linguistic processes in ex-Yugoslav countries which (after independence) reject the idea of Serbo-Croatian language with some dialects
and promote "new" languages like Bosnian or Montenegrin with archaic regional words revived and promoted as replacement for the "Serbian" words.
Macedonians too are since centuries in a process of defining a national and linguistic identity different than Bulgarian.
Since the thread here is about the origins of some Romanian words, I have a question here, too. There has been given a list with several Slavic words in Romanian. I wonder what origin is Romania, considering the old attested forms of 'rumŭněskŭ' and 'Rumunense'?
Also, is it possible for the word Romanian 'român" - 'romanus' (Latin) - 'vallach' - 'rumân' be of a Slavic origin, or is it Latin?
I agree with most of the above, but with some observations:
- the word rumân satisfies the phonetic rules applicable on its Latin source: romanus
The change om > um is also encountered in:
rom. cumnat < lat. cognatus (the Latin group gn was transformed in Romanian mn, e.g. rom. semn < lat. signum, rom. lemn < lat. lignum)
rom. Dumnezeu < lat. Domine Deus (Domine is vocative mood)
rom. a cumpăra < lat. comparare
and many other examples.
The suffix -esc could be explain by both Latin -esco and Thracian -isko. Some linguists believe it was a coincidence for the Dacian population who learnt Latin to find a suffix very similar in their native language and in Latin, so this is the reason this suffix is very productive in Romanian (and less productive in other Romance languages).
I don't think the Slavic suffix -ьskъ has influenced a trend which was already in Romanian when the Slavs arrived in Balkans.