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Лекція 2. Etymological analysis of the English vocabulary

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1. Words of native origin and their characteristics.

2. Borrowings.

2.1. Classification of borrowings according to the borrowed aspect.

2.2. Classification of borrowings according to the degree of assimilation.

2.3. Classification of borrowings according to the language from which they were borrowed.

3. Etymological doublets.

4. International words.

 

Words of native origin and their characteristics.

Etymologically the vocabulary of the English language consists of two layers the native stock of words and borrowed stock of words. Native words comprise only 30% of the total number of words in the English vocabulary.

A native word is a word which belongs to the origin English stock, as known from the earliest available manuscripts of the Old English period.

The native words are subdivided into those of the Indo-European stock and those of Common Germanic origin i.e. of words having parallels in German, Norwegian and Dutch.

The words having the cognates (words of the same etymological root, of common origin) in the vocabularies of different Indo-European languages from the oldest layer which readily falls into definite semantic groups:

  1. Family relations: father, mother, brother, son, daughter (cf. Ukr. Мати, брат, син).
  2. Parts of the human body: foot ( cf. Rus. пядь), nose (cf. Ukr. ніс), lip, heart.
  3. Animals: cow, swine, goose.
  4. Plants: tree, birch (cf. Rus. береза), corn ( cf. Rus. зерно).
  5. Time of day: day, night.
  6. Heavenly bodies: sun, moon, star.
  7. Numerous adjectives: red, ( cf. Ukr. Рудий, Rus. рыжий), new, glad ( cf. Rus. гладкий), sad (cf. Rus. сыт).
  8. The numerals from one to a hundred.
  9. Pronouns: personal (except they which is a Scandinavian borrowing); demonstrative.
  10. Numerous verbs: be ( cf. Rus. стоять), sit (cf. Rus. Сидеть), eat (cf. Rus.есть), know (cf.Rus.знать, знаю).

Some of the most frequent verbs are also of Indo-Europuean common stock: bear, come, sit, stand and others. The adjectives of this group denote concrete physical properties: hard, quick, slow, red, white. Most numerals also belong here.

The Germanic element represents words of roots common to all or most Germanic languages. Some of the main groups of Germanic words are the same as in the Indo-European element.




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