False Friends

GermanFrench   Thu Feb 26, 2009 8:01 am GMT
German Haut-skin,French haut-high.
German rein-purely,French rein-kidney.
German Land-country (or land),French lande-moor.
German Stadt-city,French stade-stage.
German hart-hard , French hart-binder.
Geile Sau   Thu Feb 26, 2009 8:54 am GMT
>>German: Geil - cool, great whatever
Dutch: Geil - Horny <<

The meaning of 'geil' in German is not only 'cool', but also 'horny'.
Leasnam   Sun Mar 01, 2009 7:30 pm GMT
German & English: "also" (words from combination of same words ['all' + 'so'], but different meanings); French & English: "also" & "aussi" (same meaning and similar form, yet totally unrelated [Fr < Lat 'aliud' + 'sic'])
Longinus   Mon Mar 02, 2009 5:50 pm GMT
Latin "amare" - to love
French "amarre" - marine rope

Latin "est" - "he/she/it is"
French "est" - East
Royman   Thu Mar 05, 2009 4:15 pm GMT
She was a slut, and she got herself pregnant.

Now she's embarassed (embarasada).

She sould be embarassed. And ashamed. Fuckin slut.
Guest   Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:32 am GMT
Embarazoso = embarrasing (maybe English embarrased comes from this)
Embarazada = pregnant
Serg   Tue Mar 10, 2009 8:03 pm GMT
English - accurate, adj (correct, precise, true in every detail)
Russian - аккуратный, adj (tidy and carefully arranged, neat; when applied to a person, means that the person likes to keep things tidy)
Leasnam   Tue Mar 10, 2009 10:11 pm GMT
English 'gain' ==(< OE. 'gain', 'gein', 'gayhen', "gain, advantage", of Scand. origin akin to Icel. gagn; akin to Sw. gagn, Dan. gavn, cf. Goth. gageigan to gain)


French 'gain' ==(< MF, contr. of OF gaaing, n. deriv of gaaignier to till, earn, win < Gmc; cf. OHG weidanōn to hunt, forage for food, O.E. wāð pursuit)

For a long time I believed the English word was from the French, but it was clearly already in use in Old English before the Norman Conquest in the sense of "return [on investment]", "increase", "profit" from the same source as '-gain' in "again/against" meaning "back/in return" and has cognates in Scandinavian languages from which its presence in OE is certainly attributed.

Although the French word has the selfsame form and meaning, and undoubtedly increased the strength and frequency of the Old English word, they are not really one and the same.
La madre   Wed Mar 11, 2009 12:04 am GMT
put English
puta Spanish
Joel   Wed Mar 11, 2009 12:23 am GMT
Finnish, Sweedish:

kurva (curve)

Spanish, Italian:

Curva (curve)

Any Slavic Language, plus several bordering languages (Hungarian, Albanian...):

Kurva (whore)
furrykef   Tue Mar 17, 2009 9:30 am GMT
<< Latin "est" - "he/she/it is"
French "est" - East >>

Except the French word for Latin "est" is... "est". So while it may still technically be a false friend, I don't think it has the potential for confusion that is normally associated with false friends. The only case that would cause problems is a French speaker writing "est" for "east" in Latin, which I don't think is that likely (although not impossible).

Here's a classic:

Spanish: preservativos
Looks like: preservatives
Actually means: condoms ["preservatives" is "conservantes"]

I've also heard of several instances of English speakers trying to translate "cake" as "gato" (because they knew the French word "gateau"). Why on Earth they expect that to work is beyond me.

- Kef
rere   Tue Mar 17, 2009 9:52 am GMT
gay - English = happy, cheerful; homosexual
gay - Spanish = homosexual

ie, Spanish only has the raunchy meaning.
Guest   Tue Mar 17, 2009 3:33 pm GMT
No , en español gay en un principio tenía otro significado, principalmente relacionado con el arte provenzal, pero hoy día ha sido totalmente aniquilado y eclipsado por gay = homosexual.

"Arte de los trovadores en lengua provenzal, practicantes del Gay Saber"(F. Lázaro Carreter)

Arte de la poesía, especialmente trovadoresca, de origen provenzal, imitada en España en el S. XV. / Gay Saber. "Modo de cantar a las damas, regulado por las Leys d'amors" (F. Lázaro Carreter)
Guest   Tue Mar 17, 2009 3:39 pm GMT
Es paradójico que gaya ciencia significara el arte de cantar a las damas y actualmente gay signifique el "arte" de hacer el amor con hombres.
guarro   Tue Mar 17, 2009 3:53 pm GMT
ya por aquel entonces solian cantar a las damas pero preferian hacer el amor con hombres :-)