A Conversation for Ask h2g2

LessUsed Facts

Post 9821

Baron Grim

Similarly, the color orange was named after the fruit.

It entered English from Spanish 'naranja', from Arabic 'naranj', from Persian 'naranj', from Sanskrit 'naranga', which likely meant simply "orange tree" or 'fragrant tree'. The first 'n' may have been dropped due to the similar sound of "a norange" and "an orange".


On a side note, I've been told Glenmorangie rhymes with 'orange-y'.


LessUsed Facts

Post 9822

Cheerful Dragon

A norange -> an orange

It's a process called metanalysis. Other examples are napron, napricot and otch (we got the word 'oche' from Old French and changed 'an oche' to 'a notch'.)


LessUsed Facts

Post 9823

ITIWBS

...yup, just that its easier to make the glottal stop after a consonant than after a vowel...


LessUsed Facts

Post 9824

Mr. Dreadful - Je suis Marxiste, tendance Groucho.

"A norange -> an orange

It's a process called metanalysis"

And is a really good thing to mention when the grammar pedants are getting to excited. smiley - evilgrin


LessUsed Facts

Post 9825

Dmitri Gheorgheni

That explanation is a bit misleading, though, I think - the 'a/an' metanalysis business seems to have taken place in the Romance languages. 'Cause we got 'orange' from Middle French, if I read it right. 'une narange/une orange'.

It's still a fun phenomenon. smiley - smiley One way to tell it happened is to compare languages. In Germany, there's a snake called a 'Natter'...

Btw, the Greeks name the fruit from the country. The word 'portokali' means 'orange' (and also 'Portuguese'). smiley - apple


LessUsed Facts

Post 9826

Cheerful Dragon

The 'natter' is definitely another one. A nadder became an adder.


LessUsed Facts

Post 9827

Baron Grim

Y'all might enjoy how the North American bird known as the turkey got named after the region formerly known as the Ottoman Empire.

http://blog.dictionary.com/turkey/


LessUsed Facts

Post 9828

Dmitri Gheorgheni

Obviously these people never heard guinea fowl. Very noisy birds. smiley - winkeye

When I got to 'Dutch chicken', I cracked up. smiley - rofl


LessUsed Facts

Post 9829

Baron Grim

Me too. smiley - laugh


LessUsed Facts

Post 9830

Mr. Dreadful - Je suis Marxiste, tendance Groucho.

There are over 10,000 Catholic saints. smiley - angel


LessUsed Facts

Post 9831

Baron Grim

I'm reminded of Robert Heinlein's description of saints getting on public transport in Heaven with their "halos the size of bath tubs". smiley - angelsmiley - laugh


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