Almost everyone has the feeling that the Latin word is just better than an English word.
Latin came to English always through the superior (conquering races). Latin words enhoy
a privileged place in the English language.
The English and the Franks (French)
- when France took over England, French language was of the elite.
- Franchise – Etymological meaning is to make something involving the French
- Modern meaning – you don‟t own the company, but you have complete rights in a
geographical region. To treat someone like they‟re French and the French are free.
- To infranchise someone- a person is now treated like they are French and have
rights (to own land, vote etc.) because only the French had rights.
- People started changing names to Francine, Francis, Franklin
- Frank – to be honest with you, up front. Not to be English, to be upper class.
- Frankincense – French incense – really expensive incense.
French and Latin vs. English
-cordial reception vs. hearty welcome
-baker, fisherman, shepherd, weaver (all English words, low class professions)
-carpenter, painter, tailor, mason (takes something and turns it into something, a skilled
profession, French words because they‟re respectable. Want to be known by French title)
-breakfast (English), dinner (Latin and French), supper (Latin and French). The meals
where you have your friends over and make it something elegant (dinner and supper) you
refer to French. Breakfast isn‟t really a hosting event, so it‟s an English word.
-Town, House, Home (all English words)
-City, Mansion, Palace (all French words equivalent to the English words above, sounds
nicer and upper class)
-cow, beef (The animal is English, but the cut of meat that you cook into a fancy meal is
the French Word)
- pig/pork, calk/veal, deer/venison
-boil, broil, fry, grill, roast, toast (All these are French words, because they‟re nice
sounding and sounds appetizing)
Attempt to correct English words that were derived from French words to become more
related to original Latin spelling. During the Renaissance, the great thinkers realized
French is good, but Latin must be betterm so they started going back to Latin and getting
the word directly from there to get words that are closer to the original Latin spelling.
-Parfit, replaces by perfect
-peinture, replaced by picture
-vittles, replaced by victuals Sometimes the made a wrong change, but they thought it was right, and changes had
nothing to do with one another. Just an accident. Done on a mistaken assumption that if
they look alike, they must be the same.
-iland, replaced by island
-inkhorn is a little pot and special writing device preferred by people who did a lot