Sacud­ir and Per­cus­sion, Dis­cus­sion, Con­cus­sion

Sacud­ir, Span­ish for “to shake” comes from the Latin for the same, quatere.

From that same root, we get a bunch of Eng­lish -cus­sion words, in­clud­ing:

  • Dis­cus­sion — that’s when you shake up what you’re talk­ing about!
  • Con­cus­sion — that’s when you shake some­one so hard, they get hurt!
  • Per­cus­sion — that’s when you shake the drums a lot!

You can see the s‑c in re­verse in the Span­ish sacud­ir and the -cus­sion words.

Eje and Axle

The Span­ish eje for “axle” comes from the Latin for the same, ax­is. The Eng­lish axle comes from the same com­mon an­ces­tor as the Latin ax­is, the pro­to-in­do-eu­ro­pean root *aks- al­so mean­ing the same.

The Span­ish eje is easy to un­der­stand if we re­mem­ber that most of the x/sh/ch sounds in Latin and the an­cient lan­guages be­came the throat-clear­ing ‑j- sound in Span­ish. Thus, the e‑j of eje maps to the a‑x of axle pret­ty clear­ly.

It’s in­ter­est­ing how such a sim­ple word has re­mained most­ly un­changed for tens of thou­sands of years. Per­haps, the axle is one of the most fun­da­men­tal dis­cov­er­ies in hu­man his­to­ry. It is, af­ter all, what led to the wheel, which led to… civ­i­liza­tion.

Temor and Tim­o­thy

Temor (Span­ish for “fear”) comes from the Latin for the same, tim­or.

From this root, we al­so get the Eng­lish name… Tim­o­thy. The ‑thy end­ing comes from the Greek theo-, mean­ing, “God” — so Tim­o­thy is lit­er­al­ly, one who is scared of God.

From the same root, we al­so get the less com­mon… temer­i­ty, which just means “bold­ness”: and what is be­ing bold if not, not hav­ing any fear?

Lig­ar and Al­le­giance

Al­le­giance is a very Ro­man idea: strong loy­al­ty to your team, your em­pire.

So it’s not sur­pris­ing that the word it­self comes from the Latin, lig­are — to bind. Your al­le­giance is what binds you or ties you to your team.

From the Latin lig­are, we get the Span­ish… lig­ar, mean­ing the same, ty­ing or bind­ing!

Thus, the l‑g root is clear­ly vis­i­ble in both ver­sions.

Co­brar and Re­cu­per­ate

The Span­ish co­brar (“to charge”; in the sense of, to charge a fee or col­lect a pay­ment) comes from the old­er Span­ish re­co­brar (mean­ing, “to re­cu­per­ate”) — which it­self comes from the Latin re­cu­per­are for the same “to re­cu­per­ate.”

We can see the c‑b-r map­ping to the c‑p-r clear­ly, since the ‑c- and ‑p- are of­ten in­ter­changed.

Les­son: charg­ing for some­thing is re­al­ly just re­cu­per­at­ing mon­ey that is owed to you any­way!


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