Monday, November 12, 2018

Eng. -age ~ Sp. -aje, Part 8: Some common, older words in Eng. -age and Sp. -aje

[This entry comes from Chapter 18, "Eng. language and Sp. lenguaje: words ending in Eng. -age and Sp. -aje", of Part II of the open-source textbook Spanish-English Cognates: An Unconventional Introduction to Spanish Linguistics.]


Some common, older words in Eng. -age and Sp. -aje

In Table 165 below, we can see a few common and very old words in ‑age in English along with cognate French and Spanish words, where available. These are old words that for the most part can be traced back to Vulgar Latin nouns with the ‑ātĭcum suffix. In some cases, however, they developed in Old French at a later time following the same pattern.

As we will see later on, English got most of its words ending in ‑age from French, but others, such as luggage, it created by analogy. Spanish also got most of the words in ‑aje from either (Northern) French, Occitan, or Catalan. A few, however, were created in Spanish, such as the recent creation esquirolaje ‘strike-breaking, scabbing’, derived from the noun esquirol ‘strike-breaker, scab’, a loanword from Catalan. 

These are words that are in many cases easily recognized as cognates by their form and meaning. In some cases, however, they are false friends, since the meanings may not have remained unchanged in one or the other language since they were borrowed. In some cases, one of the languages does not have the word (cognate) in question.

Latin word
Derived Late Latin
Mod. French
VIA ‘road’
VIATICUM ‘trip, etc.’
voyage ‘trip’
voyage ‘ocean trip’
viaje ‘trip, travel’ (from Catalan viatge)
COR ‘heart’
coraje ‘courage; anger’ < Old French corage
FOLIA ‘leaf’
feuillage [fœ.ˈjaʒ]
foliage [ˈfoʊ̯.lɪ.ɪʤ]
SILVA ‘forest, grove, woods’
salvaje ‘wild’ (from Catalan salvatge)
SALVUS ‘safe’
(salvamento, rescate)
HOMO (acc. HOMINEM) ‘man’
HOMINATICUM ‘service of a vassal; homage’
homage [ˈ(h)ɒmɪʤ] < O. Fr. homage
homenaje ‘tribute, homage’[2]
CARRUS ‘four-wheeled baggage wagon’ < CARRUCA type of cart
carriage < Old North. French cariage < carier ‘to carry’
carruaje < Cat. carruatge[3]
*POTTUS (Vulgar Latin) ‘vessel, pot, container’ (origin unknown but not related to Latin POTUS ‘drinking cup’)
potage ‘soup’
pottage, potage ‘thick creamy soup’ (archaic?)
potaje ‘vegetable and pulse stew’
DAMNUM ‘damage, injury’ (cf. Sp. daño)
dommage [dɔ.ˈmaʒ] < O.Fr. damage
damage < O. Fr. 12c
MARĪTUS ‘husband’ (cf. Sp. marido)
mariage ‘marriage; wedding’
Old. Sp. maridaje adapted from O. Fr. mariage
PERSONA ‘character in drama; person’ < ‘mask’
cf. Old French persone ‘human being, anyone, person’
*PERSONATICUM ‘important person’
personage ‘a character in a literary work; important person’ < Old Fr.
personage (rare) ‘a character in a literary work; important person’ < Old Fr.
personaje ‘a character in a literary work; important person’ < Old Fr.
ORPHANUS (Late Latin) ‘parentless child’
(orphelinat) Old Fr. orphanage was a collective noun)
orphanage ‘home for orphans’, originally ‘orphans collectively’
(orfanato, orfelinato)
MISSUS ‘sent; a dispatching’ (past participle of MITTERE ‘to send’)
mensaje < Old Occ. messatge
ABANTE < ab ‘of, from, by’ (reinforcement) + ante ‘before’
avantage (cf. avant ‘before’)
advantage < O. Fr. avantage (the d is a mistake)
ventaja ‘advantage, benefit’ < O. Fr. (was aventage, aventaja)
Table 165: Some English words in ‑age, and Spanish words in ‑aje,
which may come from Latin words with the suffix ‑ATICUM

As we have discussed, Spanish has borrowed ‑āticum words from other languages and when they were borrowed, Spanish eventually adjusted the spelling from ‑age to ‑aje. One of these is the word garaje [ɡa.ˈɾa.xe], which is the equivalent of French garage [ɡa.ˈʀaʒ] and English garage [ɡə.ˈɹɑʤ] (British Eng. [ˈɡæ.ɹɪʤ]), with the same meaning. This is a very recent loanword in both English and Spanish, from the early 20th century, from French garage ‘shelter for a vehicle’. Spanish and English speakers would not think of these words as containing a suffix, since they do not know the meaning of the root gar‑, but a French speaker immediately recognizes the connection between garage and gare ‘station’ and the verb garer ‘to park’. In other words, the structure of the word garage is transparent to a French speaker, but not to an English or Spanish speaker (cf. Part I, Chapter 5).

Some cognate English ‑age words and Spanish ‑aje words are partially false friends or semi-false friends, since sometimes, though not always, they mean the same thing. We can see examples of this in Table 165. Eng. courage and Sp. coraje, for example, do not always mean the same thing, though they did at one point, since both words were borrowed from Old French, probably sometime in the late 13th century. They came from Old French corage, which came from Vulgar Latin *corāticum, a noun formed from Latin (nom. and acc.) cor ‘heart’ and the suffix ‑aticum.

Eng. courage is said to have one single sense, namely ‘the state or quality of mind or spirit that enables one to face danger, fear, or vicissitudes with self-possession, confidence, and resolution; bravery’ (AHD), which is pretty much like the original one. If we look for the meaning of Spanish coraje, we are told that it has two meanings, one of which is like the one we just saw for English courage.[i] The other one is variously defined as ‘rage, anger, or violent irritation’ (GDLE, Sp. rabia, enfado or irritación violenta), or ‘irritation, rage’ (DRAE, Sp. irritación, ira). One dictionary’s definition of this sense points to a connection between the two senses when it defines coraje as ‘rage, anger or displeasure, especially that caused by not having been able to avoid an adverse situation or event’ (DUEAE).[ii]

It would seem that this second sense of the word courage may be the primary one in Modern Spanish, which would cause the two words to be close to false friends. Thus, English courage translates best as valor or valentía, not coraje, which would be ambiguous. Also, perhaps because of the two very different, conflicted meanings of the word, it seems that the word coraje is not used very much in Modern Spanish. Rather, synonyms for each of the two meanings of Sp. coraje seem be preferred.

In the remainder of this chapter, first we are going to look in great detail at a pair of cognates that contain these endings, namely the cognates Sp. viaje ~ Eng. voyage, as well as cognate words that contain the same root as these words (§18.4). Then, finally, in the last section of this chapter, we will look at the most common remaining Spanish words in ‑aje, looking for their source and their English cognates, when they exist (§18.5).

[1] From around the year 1600. From either Catalan fullatge, Modern Occitan fouiage, or French feuillage.
[2] First attested in El Cid (c. 1204). From either Old. Occitan omenatge or Cat. homenatge.
[3] First attested in the mid-16th century. From Old Catalan carriatge, from Old French charriage.

[i] ‘Actitud valiente, decidida y apasionada ante el enemigo o ante un peligro o dificultad’ (synonyms: arrojo, decisión, valor’ (GDLE). ‘Valor, decisión y apasionamiento con se acomete una acción, especialmente con que se acomete al enemigo o se afronta un peligro o una dificultad’ (DUEAE). ‘Impetuosa decisión y esfuerzo del ánimo, valor’ (DRAE).
[ii] One of the senses of Sp. coraje is ‘Rabia, enfado o disgusto, especialmente el que causa no haber podido evitar una situación o suceso adversos’ (DEUEA). The other sense is ‘Valor, decisión y apasionamiento con se acomete una acción, especialmente con que se acomete al enemigo o se afronta un peligro o una dificultad’.

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