Learning Spanish & Etymology Pattern-Matching for Nerds

Árbol and Herb

Árbol, Spanish for “tree” comes from the Latin arbor, for the same. We can see the Latin to Spanish evolution easily recognizing the common r-to-l swap, where the “r” and “l” sounds in many languages are often interchanged.

From the same Latin root, we get a variety of related English words, such as herb and arbor, as in Ann Arbor, home of the great University of Michigan. We also get some other Spanish words, such as hierba, meaning “grass”.

The pattern is easy to spot in the vowel-r-b root: a-r-b for árbol and e-r-b for herb.

what is the etymological way to learn spanish?

Nerds love to pattern-match, to find commonalities among everything. Our approach to learning languages revolves (the same -volve- that is in “volver”, to “return”) around connecting the Spanish words to the related English words via their common etymologies – to find the linguistic patterns, because these patterns become easy triggers to remember what words mean. Want to know more? Email us and ask:

patterns to help us learn spanish:

Buy the Book!

For Nerds Learning Spanish via Etymologies