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CONLANG  January 2004, Week 4

CONLANG January 2004, Week 4

Subject:

Re: What is a woman ?

From:

John Cowan <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Constructed Languages List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 23 Jan 2004 09:21:53 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (18 lines)

Pavel Iosad scripsit:

>
> > Could somebody here please explain me the etymology of
> > the english word "woman"?
>
> OE wifman, i.e. wife-man.

True but misleading. _Wif_ meant "woman" in OE, not "wife", and _man_ was
ambiguous between "adult male" and "human being" in OE as in ModE.
So it's a transparent compound meaning "female human being".

--
It was impossible to inveigle John Cowan <[log in to unmask]>
Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
Into offering the slightest apology http://www.reutershealth.com
For his Phenomenology. --W. H. Auden, from "People" (1953)

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