Why are Romance languages like Spanish are so weird?

CID   Sun Apr 19, 2009 10:49 pm GMT
Languages with genders assigned for common nouns are not that unusual. It's not as though gender-assignment was a result of evolution of the language, but rather a carry-over from pre-historic times when a substantive often had a form in all three genders.

Just to byspell, if PIE had a word for "computer", *komputer-, it might appear in masc. (*komputeros), feminine (*komputera) or neut. forms (*komputerom) depending on circumstance.

Now, as languages evolved from PIE, it wasn't always necessary to maintain all three forms of the word--often, only ONE form overlived. This is sometimes the reason why PIE cognates of the same word show different suffixes/genders in daughter languages (cf. Old English w√¶ter (neut.) Russian вода (fem.), Irish uisce (masc.))

Lastly, it's that way just because it is.
PARISIEN   Mon Apr 20, 2009 10:21 am GMT
<< Lastly, it's that way just because it is. >>

C'est toujours la meilleure approche !
szepinho   Mon Apr 20, 2009 12:20 pm GMT
Look at the gender noun in two similar languages: Italian and Spanish

il miele (masculine) It. (honey)
la miel (feminine) Sp.

il sale (masculine) it. (salt)
la sal (feminine) Sp.

il pepe (masculine) it pepper
la pimienta (feminine) Sp.

il fiele (masculine) it. (bile)
la fiel (feminine) sp.

la fine/ il fine (different meaning) (masculine/feminine) it. (end, objective)
el fin (masculine) sp.

l'uccello (masculine) it. (bird)
el ave (feminine) sp.

il letto (masculine) it. (bed)
la cama (feminine( sp.

il tavolo (masculine) it. table
la mesa (feminine) sp.
and many other examples....
utilisateur   Mon Apr 20, 2009 4:02 pm GMT
<< In Latin there were no definite article like in Romance and Germanic languages, only the noun ending indicated the gender. How did the Romance definite articles evolve from Latin? >>

It's important to remember, Classical Latin was never at any time spoken by the ordinary masses.
Guest   Mon Apr 20, 2009 4:45 pm GMT
<<It's important to remember, Classical Latin was never at any time spoken by the ordinary masses. >>

Even early forms of Romance do not show use of definite articles either.
utilisateur   Mon Apr 20, 2009 5:27 pm GMT
Which were the earliest recorded forms for each respective romance language?
Guest   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:02 pm GMT
<<el ave (feminine) sp. >>


El ave is masculine.
matko   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:09 pm GMT
lol
eu   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:09 pm GMT
El ave is masculine

El ave es feminino, bobo!
Guest   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:34 pm GMT
El is masculine and la is feminine. You have no clue.
Guest   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:35 pm GMT
<< la fiel (feminine) sp. >>

It's el fiel, not la fiel.
Leasnam   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:41 pm GMT
Who cares about facts?
lael   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:54 pm GMT
<<El is masculine and la is feminine. You have no clue. >>

Isn't "el" both feminine and masculine in Spanish?
Guest   Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:57 pm GMT
It's transgender.
hrabisham   Mon Apr 20, 2009 7:00 pm GMT
<<It's transgender. >>

I thought that was "lo".