Basque and other relationships

Michael Mccafferty mmccaffe at
Tue Jun 6 20:30:25 UTC 2000

> The Basque speakers have been ruled by Indo-European speakers for so
> long that many loanwords are likely to have got in, even for family
> relationships. Compare: English is Germanic, but "uncle" comes from
> Latin "avunculus".
> > ... the influence of Mongolian on at least one Uralic language, namely
> > Hungarian: it comes to the mind the word *bátor* meaning *brave* which
> > apart from being  a fairly common word in Hungarian enters in the very
> > name of the capital city of Mongolia (Ulaan Baator, I think). 
> The Mongols under Batu Khan (he was Genghis's son, I think) overran
> Hungary. It is no wonder a stray loanword got across. The word also got
> into Hindi as "bahadur".

Loan words are a source of mystery. Consider Miami-Illinois, a Great Lakes
Algonquian language, in which the word for "eight" is a borrowing from
Siouan Tutelo. How in the devil that happened is anybody's guess.


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