Words that just won't stick

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-06-20, 20:57

linguoboy wrote:For some reason, I've had a hell of time remembering that it's (es)mapache "raccoon" and (es-MX)tambache "pile", not *mapuche and *tambuche. In the first instance, I can blame interference from Mapuche, but why should I have problems with tambache?


I don't know if you use mnemonics a lot when learning vocabulary, I do. I'd try to think of a racoon holding a map ((es) mapa) and for the second one, it's a bit trickier but maybe think of a pile of "H's" ((es) Hache).

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby linguoboy » 2019-07-19, 16:09

I'm going to post a few from my Spanish reading in the hopes of making them stick:

carcajada guffaw
carey tortoiseshell
ladrillo brick
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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-08-11, 6:30

English (en) bundobust, Urdu (ur) بند و بست‎, etc. (other Indian languages have this term, too)

Does anyone even use this term anymore in any language? How the fuck do you remember that something about tying means organization?
Vlürch wrote:
voron wrote:Rüya is actually originally Arabic

Ohhh, welp. Goes to show once again that assuming etymologies is never a good idea. :P It probably entered Turkish through Persian, though, right?

Yes.

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby ReachingOut » 2019-08-11, 7:58

In Romanian, there are a lot of words of Slavic origin beginning with zdr- or zb- which sound a bit similar and for some reason won't stick, or are harder to learn. Zdrobi, for example, to crush or defeat. I find it a lot easier to learn such words when I write them down, or create a mental image from the word which I then associate with the word and its sound.

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-08-16, 0:00

Catalan (ca) llavors - then

I recently noticed that I remembered aleshores but not this. It's one of those things where the problem used to be the opposite, and now I've spent so much effort trying to remember one term that I forgot the term I always remembered. :lol: I also just learned how this is supposed to be pronounced.

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Osias » 2019-08-17, 17:17

vijayjohn wrote:Catalan (ca) llavors - then


Ara estic amb aquesta cançó al cap:

https://youtu.be/vxXbdqh4h7k
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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Vlürch » 2019-08-25, 14:29

Japanese (ja) 響き (hibiki) - echo

Whenever I hear this, I incorrectly remember that it refers to some kind of a flower, mostly because hibiscus is a flower. That doesn't happen if I see it written, though, or with the verb 響く (hibiku) because it wouldn't make sense for a flower to be used as a verb; I might still misremember what it means, though, but I can't remember right now what some of the things I've misremembered it meaning as a verb are.

I mean, it's also in part due to how, to my ears, /hibiki/ just doesn't sound like it means "echo". Like, obviously a lot of words don't sound like they mean what they mean and objectively there probably isn't such a correspondence as "sound = meaning" at all, but all three syllables are so soft and it's such a cute word that matching how it sounds to its meaning is literally impossible for me. It sounds like it should mean a beautiful flower, so the fact that it doesn't...

English (en) chartreuse

I know it's common for people to think this refers to some kind of red, but personally I always remember it referring to a kind of brown, like this:
Image
...when really, it refers to a kind of yellow-green, like this:
Image
It's just impossible for me to get it in my head, probably again because of some kind of misguided sound symbolism shit that's out of my control. :para:

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-08-25, 20:09

linguoboy wrote:I'm going to post a few from my Spanish reading in the hopes of making them stick:

carcajada guffaw


Interesting. This looks like a cognate of (pt-br) gargalhada (with the same meaning). The <j> to <lh> change is well known to me from many other examples ("espejo" vs "espelho", "ojo" vs "olho" etc.) but while /k/ to /g/ is a totally normal, run-of-the-mill sound change in general, I don't remember seeing it a lot between Spanish and Portuguese. Basically, I'd have expected "gargajada" in Spanish given the Portuguese (also because I always assumed it was related somehow to "garganta" which is the same in both languages).

linguoboy wrote:ladrillo brick


Oh, I'm taking this for the True false friends thread!

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-08-25, 22:24

Malayalam (ml) തകരപ്പെട്ടി [t̪əˈgəɾəpɛʈi] 'steel trunk'
തകര [t̪əˈgəɾa] 'can' (as in a tin can)

Also:
vijayjohn wrote:കിഴുത്ത [kiˈɻut̪a] 'hole'

I always forget whether the last consonant is supposed to be "silent" or not (if it was, then it would be pronounced [kiˈɻut̪ɯ] in isolation and before a consonant and [kiˈɻut̪] before a vowel).

I think I'm starting to find that I have this problem every time I've been out of practice for a long time (i.e. when I've spent too much time in an environment that doesn't give me any opportunities to speak Malayalam).
Vlürch wrote:I mean, it's also in part due to how, to my ears, /hibiki/ just doesn't sound like it means "echo".

Maybe the /bi/ is an echo of the /hi/. :P

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Osias » 2019-09-27, 13:52

(it) adesso
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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-10-06, 4:04

German (de) auf jemanden einreden (less often also auf jemanden einsprechen) - to talk insistently to someone
der Vorwurf - reproach, accusation
die Ermahnung - admonition
überarbeiten - to edit to improve or until almost completely rewritten

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Linguaphile » 2019-10-19, 16:01

Maybe if I write these out here, I'll solve the problem of not remember the meaning of these words.

(et) auahne = ambitious
I think the issue here is that I think of the English word as having a generally positive connotation, and the Estonian one has having a generally negative connotation (cf. ahne = greedy, voracious, avaricious), and somehow this throws me off when I encounter the word - even though the Estonian word auahne can be used with just as positive connotation as in English.

(et) kius = stubborn effort, malicious stubbornness, obstinacy, defiance, spite
(et) kiusama = to annoy, to harass
(et) kiusatus = temptation
But I don't have problems with this one, which is related: (et) kiuste = despite, in spite of

For kius/kiuste/kiusama/kiusatus it's the relationship between these words that causes me confusion, I think. To be honest I have the same confusion over the relationship between the meanings of "spite" in English (the verb to spite and the phrase in spite of and the word despite.) In English it never causes me any problems with understanding what the words mean, it's just the shift in the English meanings that seems etymologically unexpected to me (i.e. the shift in meaning from "to despise, have contempt or malice for" to "regardless of, notwithstanding" in English).
It therefore surprised me (and somehow confuses me) to find such a similar shift in meaning in Estonian (kius = spite, obstinacy, defiance; kiuste = despite, in spite of), and then to go beyond that to kiusama to annoy and kiusatus temptation. I can see how they are all somewhat related and come from the same root, but mixing them up with each other causes significant misunderstanding, and somehow I tend not to remember their meanings correctly.
(I don't mean that I mix up the nouns with verbs and so on. I mean that I come across a word like kiusatus and think it should have something to do with "annoyance" or "harassment" rather than "temptation", etc. Basically, for affixed words I get the meaning of the root wrong. I think it's due to not finding an adequately concrete commonality among the divergent meanings; I've mentally attached the root to a meaning of *annoyance when it's actually quite a bit broader than that.)

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby linguoboy » 2019-10-21, 20:21

(es) cata tasting (e.g. cata de vinos "wine-tasting")
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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Linguaphile » 2019-10-22, 3:31

linguoboy wrote:(es) cata tasting (e.g. cata de vinos "wine-tasting")

Not sure if this would help, but:
Cata
can be any small portion of something eaten for the purpose of tasting it, like the bite-sized food samples they sometimes give out in some stores to taste while you shop, or if someone offers you a bite of something they've made just so that you can taste it (a spoonful of soup from the pot, etc). It doesn't have to be a formal event like a wine tasting (although that's the most common use) - it can be any sort of "porción de algo que se prueba" - portion of something that you have a taste of.
From the verb catar which means "to try, taste, sample the flavor of" (probar, gustar algo para examinar su sabor o sazón) which in turn comes from Latin captāre "seek, seize, grasp, catch". So, you grasp/catch a little bit of something to see how well you like it.

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-10-22, 8:13

Linguaphile wrote:
linguoboy wrote:(es) cata tasting (e.g. cata de vinos "wine-tasting")

Not sure if this would help, but:
Cata
can be any small portion of something eaten for the purpose of tasting it, like the bite-sized food samples they sometimes give out in some stores to taste while you shop, or if someone offers you a bite of something they've made just so that you can taste it (a spoonful of soup from the pot, etc). It doesn't have to be a formal event like a wine tasting (although that's the most common use) - it can be any sort of "porción de algo que se prueba" - portion of something that you have a taste of.
From the verb catar which means "to try, taste, sample the flavor of" (probar, gustar algo para examinar su sabor o sazón) which in turn comes from Latin captāre "seek, seize, grasp, catch". So, you grasp/catch a little bit of something to see how well you like it.


Cool, that was my intuition when I saw the term - catar in Portuguese means "catch" as well, so it's like saying "a grab of wine" :D.

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Osias » 2019-10-23, 18:06

An example of my wife's:

(en) Jeopardize. She said it always reminds her of leopards. I told her to try to remember leopards are menacing/threatening/:?:.
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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby linguoboy » 2019-10-23, 19:08

Osias wrote:(en) Jeopardize. She said it always reminds her of leopards. I told her to try to remember leopards are menacing/threatening/:?:.

It's such an odd spelling for that sound. I never realised it was from jeu parti. (Another example of /ø/ > /ɛ/ for Ciarán!)
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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-10-23, 19:22

linguoboy wrote:
Osias wrote:(en) Jeopardize. She said it always reminds her of leopards. I told her to try to remember leopards are menacing/threatening/:?:.

It's such an odd spelling for that sound. I never realised it was from jeu parti. (Another example of /ø/ > /ɛ/ for Ciarán!)


I will pronounce this word as /ˈdʒu:pəɹdəɪz/ from now on in protest.

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby Linguaphile » 2019-10-24, 3:00

Osias wrote:An example of my wife's:

(en) Jeopardize. She said it always reminds her of leopards. I told her to try to remember leopards are menacing/threatening/:?:.

She may be happy to know she's not the only one:
Image

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Re: Words that just won't stick

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-10-24, 21:50

Jeopardy, jeopardize, etc. remind me of the TV show, of course. :P

English (en) strychnine - a type of chemical used as a pesticide (this is sort of personally important to me because my maternal grandmother's maiden name was കാഞ്ഞിരപ്പള്ളിൽ [ˈkaːɲɪɾəpəɭɭɪl], and കാഞ്ഞിരം [ˈkaːɲɪɾəm] means 'strychnine tree' in Malayalam)

Malayalam (ml) കെടുതി [kɛˈɖʊd̪i] - ruin, loss, danger, risk, disease
കവിയുക [kəˈʋijʊga] - to exceed, overflow, go beyond limits
കാഴ്ചപ്പാട് [kaːɻt͡ʃəˈpaːɖɯ] - range of vision, view, standpoint, point of view, stance
വേതനം [ˈʋeːd̪ɛnəm] - salary, wages, remuneration (this is a particularly baffling word since it sounds almost identical to the word for 'pain' :lol:)

These are all words I can sort of recognize when I see them, but I don't quite remember what they mean well enough to identify them upon seeing the English translation (for കാട്ടുക, in particular, the one meaning I remember is 'to show', and I definitely don't remember the part about shepherds...):

മതിപ്പ് [məˈd̪ipɯ] - esteem, respect, estimation, valuation, what is based on demand
പ്രോത്സാഹിപ്പിക്കുക [proːlˈsaːhipikʲʊga] - to encourage, inspire, prompt, cheer up
പരിശ്രമിക്കുക [pəɾiˈɕrəmikʲʊga] - to attempt, work hard, try to
കാട്ടുക [ˈkaːʈʊga] - (intransitive) to do, perform; (transitive) to show, disclose, point, betray
സംഘടിപ്പിക്കുക [səŋˈgʱəɖipikʲʊga] - to organize
ഘോഷയാത്ര [gʱoːʃəˈjaːt̪ra] - procession, journey to the village of shepherds (goatherds?)

Mandarin Chinese (zh) 专攻 zhuāngōng, 主修 zhǔxiū - to major
辅修 fǔxiū - to minor


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