I believe this is one of many examples of Latin vowel reduction in word-internal syllables. The basic pattern is that short vowels in word-internal syllables were reduced: the resulting vowel in Classical Latin varies depending on the phonological context, and sometimes on the vowel. In inermis, the vowel is in a closed syllable, which is a context where a ...
I'll try to answer my own question, if I may. After a bit of research I discovered that no more than 300 years ago the meaning of Spanish actual was actually the same as English actual, as seen by this definition found in a Spanish dictionary from 1726:
ACTUAL. Lo que real y verdaderamente existe al tiempo que se dice, ò enuncia.
Translated: "what is ...
The next time you get into that dream, use a plain est.
Here is an example from Caesar:
Flumen est Arar, quod per fines Haeduorum et Sequanorum in Rhodanum influit…
(Commentarii de bello Gallico I.12)
There is a river called the Saone, which flows through the territories of the Aedui and Sequani into the Rhone…
(W. A. McDevitte and ...
Another partial answer.
Tl;dr: kissing had a social role in Judaism that was inherited into Christianity (as osculum in the Vulgate), where it even had/acquired a ceremonial role (not sure if this one existed among Jews). Maybe—and this is pure speculation—this ceremonial role was what later made the word osculum a matter of respect and created ...
I cannot provide a complete answer either, but perhaps a few points one the subject of kissing, and the semantics of the words for it. I cannot, unfortunately, provide immediate literature references for these,
The elder word for the kiss is osculum, attested in the earliest writing, and with a very transparent meaning (“little mouth”). Romans had a ...
You are correct to say that this is not a 'literal' translation. Turba is a feminine singular noun, and exultet is rightly singular. I'm not sure coro is the right word, though. Interestingly, turba made it into Spanish, but apparently with a decidedly negative connotation. In Classical Latin, turba also meant "mob", but could be used more neutrally, such as ...
According to the Italian Wiktionary entry for the Italian word lunatico, lunaticus is actually a Late Latin expression and, in particular, a calque of the Greek σεληνιακός, seleniakos, and σεληνόβλητος, selenobletos, "epileptic, mad due to the influence of the moon", from σελήνη seléne "moon". This agrees with the description given by the Treccani vocabulary,...
This book suggests:
SALARY, salaire, F. From salarium, L. a stated
allowance of provisions given to a soldier, of which (sal)
salt was a necessary part; and hence the term came to signify pay or salary.
This other book suggests:
SALARY. Of or belonging to salt. Money given
to the soldiers for salt. (L. salarium.) (A. L.) [Andrew's Latin Lexicon]
Per Lewis & Short:
actŭālis , e, adj. id.,
I. active, practical, Macr. Somn. Scip. 2, 17.—Adv.: ac-tŭālĭter , actively, Myth. Vatic. vol. 3, p. 181 ed. Bod.
So it wasn't particularly close to either the English or the Spanish word actual.
As an aside, the Oxford English Dictionary records usage of actual in English in the sense of (modern) actual ...
I'm not sure this covers all relevant ideas, so any addition/clarification is appreciated.
Four ideas that can help you:
Regarding logics as to certain types of nouns being predictably neuter by semantics alone, the main rule is... genders are arbitrary.
It is not completely random: women are feminine and men are masculine, but I'd trust grammar and ...
Smith's Copious & Critical English-Latin Dictionary (p. 430) in longish articles is good on this, giving suavium as the "most suitable word for ordinary use", osculor as "the term most suitable for the highest composition" (cf. the original question) and so on.
In his arch, Victorian way, Smith cites basium as "esp. an amorous or lewd kiss" and, in fact,...
Here's counter-evidence for you, from Ovid Amores (2,5).
inproba tum vero iungentes oscula vidi—
illa mihi lingua nexa fuisse liquet—
qualia non fratri tulerit germana severo,
sed tulerit cupido mollis amica viro;
qualia credibile est non Phoebo ferre Dianam,
sed Venerem Marti saepe tulisse suo.
or here's an excerpt from Platus Mercator (744-...
In French, this proverb exists in the form: Aide-toi et le ciel t’aidera.
This comes from a fable of La Fontaine, Le Chartier embourbé. So there is the possibility to read the Latin and Greek fables that gave him inspiration.
Æsopus, Βοηλάτης καὶ Ἡρακλῆς
Well it’s Greek, but I just mention it.
(…) τοῖς θεοῖς δ᾿ εὔχου,
ὅταν τι ποιῇς καὐτός· μὴ μάτην ...
In philosophy and theology there is a core distinction between potentiality and actuality. This distinction is originally from Greek philosophy, but can also found in medieval Christian theology (e.g. in Aquinas). The Latin terms are actus et potentia. Actus, in this philosophical position, refers to actual being, in immediate opposition to potentia, which ...
They not only had the same meaning in Latin, they were the same suffix.
In Latin, the suffix -āli- (the -s at the end is the nominative ending, so not part of the suffix) formed adjectives from nouns. But when there was an l in the stem of the noun it was attached to, the suffix became -āri- by dissimilation: e.g. familia - familiāris. This is why Spanish ...
All credit of this answer goes to sumelic. I just found further support for his hypothesis, of which I was not aware.
This article states:
Bader (1960: 236) remarks that words prefixed by privative in- (<
*en- < *n-) and dis- frequently show vowel reduction (cf. Pultrová
2006: 73, 102-103), such as inimīcus 'unfriendly' (vs. amīcus 'friendly')...
According to the Etimologia botanica of Alexandre de Théis, these words originally referred to two different species. On the one hand, melimelum comes from the Greek μελίμηλον, and this originally belonged to the species pyrus paradisiaca:
P. paradisiaca (pomme de paradis). Par allusion à son goût doux et
agréable. Les Grecs nommoient ce fruit, dans le ...
There's a whole range of expressions of the type (non) facio (or habeo, aestimo, etc.) + the genitive of some substantive, meaning 'I (don't) value as worth x.' (The genitive is a genitive of value.) The substantive can be something like parvi/magni, minimi/maximi, or tanti; or it can be some more concrete noun, like assis ('a small coin'), pili ('a hair'), ...
As your question implies, the * in *toccare means that the word is unattested, i.e., there is no direct written evidence that the verb actually existed.
This does not mean that there is a good argument against its existence: vulgar Latin/Proto-Romance was the language of (mostly) illiterate people. It doesn't mean either that there is no good argument for ...
Latin actualis first occurs in Macrobius (5th century AD), who uses it to mean “active, efficient”. This is also the original meaning of French actuel. The shift of meaning to “present, current” happened in French at a very late date (apparently in the 19th century) and it was borrowed in this meaning from French into other languages such as Spanish and ...
I was reading a new corpus study on gender assignment the other day - Hoffmann 2016 Gender in Latin and in language typology (in Latinitas Rationes, ed. P. Poccetti).
Based on two corpus studies, Hoffmann 2016 argues the following:
grammatical (morphological) gender assignment is predominant in Latin (71.4%), it includes gender assignment based on ...
This is from Plin. Nat. Hist. Book 15, ix, 37 —
his proxima amplitudine mala quae vocamus cotonea et Graece cydonea, e Creta insula advecta. incurvatos trahunt ramos prohibentque crescere parentem. plura eorum genera: chrysomela incisuris distincta, colore ad aurum inclinato, qui candidior nostratia cognominat, odoris praestantissimi
— which, answering the ...
This is an answer to your bonus question.
Yes, there are a number of kissing words in Latin.
Based on basium there are basiolum ("little kiss") and basiatio ("the act of kissing", also "kiss" by metonymy).
AS you recalled suavium is used, and so is the diminutive suaviolum.
In addition to osculum and words related to the ones you mentioned, there are ...
I've already commented on this, but I'll add this as (another) partial answer: ósculo is a learned borrowing from Latin from osculum, rather than having been descended from its Latin origin in popular speech, unlike the case of Sp. beso < L. basium, so it's natural that it started out (in Spanish) with a more literary feel to it than the common beso.
Very strangely, there is no entry for melimelum in (the electronic version of) L&S. I do not have the print version before me at the moment, but there are lots of good references (Pliny and others) in Gaffiot:
and in Georges:
Titivilitium of no value [Plautus]
This is a footnote to cnread's answer, an extended comment.
English does refer to 'peppercorn rent,' and 'faith as a grain of mustard seed,'and Edward Lear in the Jumblies
But we don’t care a button! we don’t care a fig!
But the phrases: 'isn't worth a fly,' 'to care not a straw for;' and even "I don't give a damn,&...
I think this entry in Du Cange's Glossarium ad Scriptores Mediae et Infimae Graecitatis is what you want. I find it a bit hard to make out the entire entry, but this excerpt in it seems relevant:
ὄρμος, τὸ μέρος τοῦ λιμένος, εἰς ὃ ἑλκόμεναι αἱ νῆες δέδενται · ὃ οἱ
κοινοὶ σκάλαν λέγουσι.
This describes an ὄρμος (whose meanings include such meanings as "...
An entry from the Greek lexicon of the Roman and Byzantine periods, from B.C. 146 to A.D. 1100. by E.A. Sophocles:
An entry from the magisterial Lexikon zur byzantinischen Gräzität:
σκάλα, ἡ (lat. scala) Leiter, Treppe: PhilogD 194,1.4. DelStyl 28,22 etc. PsElias 35,5. MaurD X 1,52. εἰληματική Wendeltreppe: DeCer I 391,17. Steigbügel: MaurD I 2,41; II 9,23....
I'm afraid *fra is not possible in Latin. Truncating words like that is probably very rare in Latin—of course excluding abbreviations in inscriptions and the like: those would be pronounced in full when read. So what you suggest seems impossible.
But doesn't English and French and German and Italian and basically everything in Europe come from Latin as well?
Not in the same way!
Essentially all European languages have borrowed a lot of vocabulary from Latin.
But for some languages the relation is much more intimate:
The so-called Romance languages evolved directly from Latin.
They were not only ...