Débil, Spanish for “weak,” comes from the same root as the English word debilitating: the Latin debilitas, meaning the same. This is another “obvious once you know” etymology.
Curiously, debilitas itself comes from the prefix de- (“away from”) and the Proto-Indo-European root *bel-, meaning “strong.” From the same root we get, via other routes, the strong men of the Bolsheviks. Yes, it’s the same b-l root there too!
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: [email protected]