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Vandalon Loanwords
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Why some words of Greek/Latin origin do find their way into Vandalon
This public article was written by [Deactivated User], and last updated on 10 Jan 2024, 11:06.

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 Vandalon Loanwords

At the very early stage, I decided to avoid borrowing words of Greek and Latin origin into Vandalon. I figured, it'd be too simple otherwise. Sources of inspiration here were languages like Czech, Finnish and Icelandic - and to lesser extent Russian as well as German and French themselves - which went great lengths at creating native neologisms for such words.

This is the reason why the current version of  Vandalon is much more suited for something more medieval than modern - it's always a pain to fancy a word for something like 'oxygen' or 'radio'.

Anyways, the prohibition does not spread onto those Greek and Latin words, that themselves (possibly) are loans from Pre-Indo-European languages. The rationale here is - it's just fun. I further back it up in my (still extremely vague) conworld by assuming that Pre-Indo-European cultures managed to withstand the Indo-European cultural onslaught, so it were Minoan rather than Greek speaking colonists repelling the Etruscan rather than Latin-speaking invasion of predominantly Shekelet-speaking Sicilia in the Antiquity.

I remain extremely reluctant to borrowing from other Indo-European languages, like Celtic, Baltic, Slavic or even Iranian. The reason is that I have no clue how Celtic languages work, while Baltic and Slavic were way too much influenced by the Germanic. No conworld backing for that behaviour as of now, though. I do have a number of Semitic and even a few Turkic words - the idea here being that the forebearers of  Vandalon used to live as nomads in what is now Ukraine steppes, just like Visigoths did, and borrowed a bit of nomadic terms.

For reasons I can't quite understand myself, I try to avoid words borrowed from Native American languages.


Below is an incomplete list of  Vandalon loanwords. If not explicitly stated, each word is identical in spelling and meaning to its French counterpart.

araignée [a.ʁɛ.ɲe] ~ Ancient Greek ἀράχνη, of Pre-Greek origin.
autumne [o.tɔn] - autumn, fall, ~ Latin autumnus, possibly from Etruscan 𐌀𐌕𐌖𐌍𐌄 (atume), though opposite direction is also proposed; cf. French automne.
barge [baʁʒ] - barge, ~ Late Latin barca ← Greek βᾶρις /ˈβa.ris/ ← Egyptian bꜣjr; cf. French barge.
barque [baʁk] - small boat, s. barge; cf. French barque.
baudrier [bɔ.dʁi.je(.ʁ)] - sword belt, baldric; via PG *baltijaz ~ Latin balteus ← Etruscan 𐌁𐌀𐌋𐌕𐌄𐌀 (baltea); cf. French baudrier.
bésicles [be.zikl] - glasses, spectacles, via. beryl, wich is of Dravivian origin.
bête [bet] - beast, ~ Latin bestia, of ucertain origin; cf. French bête.
boîte [bwat] - ~ Ancient Greek πυξίς /pykˈsis/, of substrate origin, cf. cf. French boîte.
carte [kɑʁt] - card, chart, map; ~ Greek χάρτης /ˈxar.tis/ presumably a Semitic loan; cf. French carte.
carton [kɑʁ.tɔ̃(.n)] - cardboard, cartoon see carte; cf. French carton.
chameau MMasculine gender (gender)
masculine or male
[ʃa.mo] / chamelle FFeminine gender (gender)
feminine or female
[ʃa.mɛl] - camel ← Proto-(West)-Semitic *gamal-; cf. French chameau / chamelle.
chanvre [ʃɑ̃vʁ] - hemp, ~ Ancient Greek κάνναβις, perhaps Scythian or Thracian.
charte [ʃaʁt] - charter; see carte; cf. French charte.
chemin - road, ~ Vulgar Latin camminus ← Gaulish *kamman ← PCelt *kanxsman
cheminée [ʃə.mi.ne] - chimney, ~ Gk κάμῑνος, of unknown origin with possible relation to Proto-Slavic *kamy: 'stone'; cf. French cheminée
cerise [sə.ʁiz] - cherry fruit, ~ Greek κέρᾰσος /ce.raˈsos/, of Anatolian origin; cf. French cerise
cigale [si.gal] - cicada, ~ Latin cicada, perhaps of substrate origin, ultimately onomatopoetic; cf. French cigale.
cigare [si.gaʁ] - cigar, perhaps form cigale, or Yukatek siyar "smoke tobacco leaves"; cf. French cigare.
crayon [kʁɛˈjɔ̃(.n)] - pencil, ~ Latin creta, of uncertain origin.
denier [də.nje] - money. While denier by extension may mean money in modern French, it is given a fictitious Turkic origin, cf. Old-Turkic teŋe- - 'compare, measure', Kazakh national currency теңге (teñge), Turkish 'denge' - 'measure, balance', Russuan 'деньги' /deñgi/ - 'money'.
diamant [dja.mɑ̃(.t)] - diamond, ultimately Gk ἀδάμας, which seems to be of Semitic origin.
électricité [e.lɛk.tʁi.si.te] - electricity, ~ Gk ἠλέκτωρ, uncertain.
élément [e.le.mɑ̃] - element, L elementum, probably of Semitic origin.
éléphant [e.le.fɑ̃] - elephant, unknown with (possible) cognates in Hittite, Egyptian, Berber, Sanskrit and Mycenean Greek.
éponge [e.pɔ̃ʒ] - sponge, ~ Gk σφόγγος, of Pontic substrate language with cognates in various languages around Mediterranean and Black Seas.
femme pfam] - woman. Actually L. femina is now considered IE, but the origin was disputed. So I just kept it this way. Totally forgot that it now has a Germanic pseudo-etymology, from PG faimô - 'maiden, virgin'.
fenêtre [fe.netʁ] - window, L fenestra, of Etruscan origin.
fer [fɛʁ] - iron, L ferrum, unknown, perhaps Semitic via Etruscan.
fiole [fjol] - vial, ~ Ancient Greek φιάλη, which is of substrate origin.
fonge [fɔ̃ʒ] - mushroom, fungus, id. in Middle French, from L fungus ~ Ancient Greek σφόγγος, see éponge
huile [ɥil] - oil, ~ P-Gk *ἐλαίϝα, possibly IE.
ivoire [i.wvaʁ] - ivory, Egyptian ꜣbw - 'elephant'
lion [ljɔ̃(.n)] - lion, ~ Greek λέων, either from Semitic cf. Proto-Semitic *labiʾ- or common substrate source.
litre [litʁ] - litre, medium measure of volume, Gk λίτρα, a Mediterranean (Sicilian?) substrate word.
livre [livʁ] - pound, medium measure of weight, L libra, see litre.
machine [ma.ʃin] - machine, ~ Gk μηχανή, Doric μᾱχᾰνᾱ́, unknown.
marché [maʁ.ʃe] - market, L merx, perhaps Etruscan; cf. Mercurius, with several proposed IE reconstructions.
métal [me.tal] - metal, ~ Gk μέταλλον, of Pre-Greek origin.
nappe [nap] - tablecloth, ~ L mappa, of Semitic origin.
natte [nat] - plait, mat, ~ L matta, of Semitic origin.
papier [pa.pje] - paper, ~ Gk πᾰ́πῡρος of Egyptian origin, perhaps p3-n-pr-ˁ3 - 'of the Pharaoh'
peuple [pœpl] - people, population; via L populus from Etruscan.
personne [pɛʁ.sɔn] - person, ~ L persona from Etruscan.
pierre [pjɛʁ] - stone, rock, ~ Gk πέτρα, unknown origin.
poêle [pwal], [pwɑl],[pwɛl] - frying pan, ultimately from Gk πᾰτᾰ́νη, of Pre-Greek origin.
pomme [pɔm] - fruit, apple; ~ Latin pomum, from unknown Mediterranean substrate from Proto-Italic *poomos, lit. 'taken off'. While Italic languages died off in the conworld, they still did exist, so this is a rare case of Italic substrate in  Vandalon; cf. French pomme.
poire [pwaʁ] - pear; L pirum, from unknown Mediterranean substrate.
prune [pʁyn] - plum, ~ Gk προῦμνον, from Asia Minor.
raisin [ʁɛ.zɛ̃(.n)] - raisin, of substrate origin(?), cf. racemus, ῥάξ /raks/, رز‎ /raz/; cf. French raisin
siréne [si.ʁɛn] - siren, ~ Ancient Greek Σειρήν, possibly of pre-Greek origin.
socque [sɔk] - clog (wooden shoe), ~ L soccus, Gk σύκχος, cf. E sock, from Asia Minor substrate.
souvache [su.vaʃ] - crocodile. A  Vandalon neologism, not identic with French crocodile, from Egypitan sbk - crocodile, cf. L -suchus
titre [titʁ] - title, L titulis, perhaps of Etruscan origin.
tombe [tɔ̃b] - tomb, ~ Gk τύμβος, uncertain origin.
torgue [tɔʁg] - trade. A  Vandalon neologism, cf. Proto-Slavic tъrgъ, which is of uncertain origin.
tortue [tɔʁ.ty] - turtle; ultimately from Gk. Τάρταρος, which is of unknown origin.
tour [tuʁ] - tower, ~ Gk τύρρις, unknown origin.
vin [vɛ̃(.n)] - wine, ~ Gk ὑιήν, apparently substrate.
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