Presley.   Sat Oct 28, 2006 8:21 pm GMT
Does the English word "thou" come from the Latin "Tu"? My dictionary isn't telling me anything.
Guest   Sat Oct 28, 2006 10:37 pm GMT
Nope, but I think they're probably related. Remeber English isn't based on Latin--it just has lots of words derived from Latin. Therefore the core vocabulary is completely from Anglo-Saxon.

English Latin or French based word
swine pork
house mansion


the fancier terms are from Latin and French, but just regular words, especially core words come from Anglo-Saxon.

In Anglo-Saxon (English as it was spoken 1000 years ago), the word thou was: þu. We lost the þ letter so it is now written 'th', and because of the French influence the "u" sound was written "ou" instead of just "u", and in the 1500s all the "u" vowels in English shifted to "ow" so that's how we get "thou"
Guest   Sat Oct 28, 2006 10:42 pm GMT
It comes from the Proto-Indo-European language word *tu-.

Proto-Indo-European is the parent language of both English and Latin. It's about 6000 years old, I think.

All the "t" sounds in the Proto-Germanic language shifted to [þ] (th). English is derived from Proto-Germanic, which in turn is derived from Proto-Indo-European.

Other examples: the "p" sound shifted to "f" in Proto-Germanic. (whereas in other languages derived from Proto-Indo-European, such as Latin did not participate in this shift)
that's why it's pater in Latin, and father in English (notice also the t->th)
and "fish" (originally "fisc") in English, and pisc- in Latin and other languages that did not shift p.
Lazar   Sun Oct 29, 2006 1:32 am GMT
Guest is right. English "thou", German "du", Latin and Romance "tu", Russian "ты", etc. all share a common origin in Proto-Indo-European.
Cow   Sun Oct 29, 2006 2:32 pm GMT
Some linguists even believe that Korean tal "moon" and Japanese teru "shine" may be distant cognates of the various Indo-European words for "star" e.g. Greek aster, Latin stella, Swedish stjarna, German Stern, Welsh seren, Persian sitareh etc. (Ruhlen). <<

Rubbish. Pure coincidence. Did you know the Nahuatl word for "well" is "huel"? They must be related...not! The "some linguists" to which you are referring are known as "fringe linguists"
Bart   Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:47 am GMT
Don't have a cow man!