American Languages, and Why We Should Study Them

Published: 1885
Language: English
Wordcount: 8,588 / 32 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 58.2
LoC Category: P
Downloads: 7,678
Added to site: 2010.05.27
mnybks.net#: 27914
Genre: Language
Buy new from: Amazon or Barnes & Noble
Find it used: eBay or AbeBooks
Get as AudioBook: Audible or AudioBooks.com
Advertisement
Excerpt

an active animate verb, and means "I beat, or strike, somebody." To the rude minds of the framers of that tongue, ownership meant the right to beat what one owned.

We might hope this sense was confined to the lower animals; but not so. Change the accent from the first to the second syllable, ni´hillan, to nihil´lan, and you have the animate active verb with an intensive force, which signifies "to beat to death," "to kill some person;" and from this, by another suffix, you have nihil´lowen, to murder, and nihil´lowet, murderer. The bad sense of the root is here pushed to its uttermost.

But the root also developed in a nobler direction. Add to ni´hillan the termination ape, which means a male, and you have nihillape, literally, "I, it is true, a man," which, as an adjective, means free, independent, one's own master, "I am my own man." From this are derived the noun, nihillapewit, a freeman; the v

Cover image for

Download


show mobile phone QR code

Donate a small amount via Paypal below or read about some other ways that you can support ManyBooks.