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French Loan Words in Eastern European Languages
Thread poster: Taylor Kirk

Taylor Kirk  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:25
Portuguese to English
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May 5, 2008

Hi everyone,

I am looking for examples of French loan words in Eastern European languages for part of a thesis. I was wondering if native speakers of the languages below (and any other languages I may have forgotten) might provide examples. I'm trying to track where/when/why certain French words began to be used, and which languages have the least/most French loan words. Many thanks in advance!

Taylor Kirk

Russian
Polish
Czech
Slovak
Lithuanian
Estonian
Hungarian
Latvian
Romanian
Serbo-Croatian
Belarussian
Slovenian
Ukrainian
Bosnian


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Michał Szcześniewski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 11:25
English to Polish
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Polish May 5, 2008

Some examples in Polish:

amant, awangarda, batalia, fryzjer, gorset, kokietka, mariaż, peruka, rendez-vous, vis-à-vis, à propos, déjà vu, adres, biżuteria, parasol.


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Alicja Weikop  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:25
English to Polish
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French Loan Words in Polish May 5, 2008

Hi Taylor,

Polish acquired quite a few French loan words, especially during the period from mid-18th century until WW2. This was due to the pro-French politics and the influences of French fashion on Polish society.

Some examples:
- apartament (apartment, suite)
- bagaż (baggage)
- basen (swimming pool)
- krem (cream)
- awans (promotion)
- balon (baloon)
- felieton (feature article)
- depesza (telegram)
- awantura (row)
- bandaż (bandage)
- kariera (career)
- pasaż (passageway)

Good luck with your research!

Alicja


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Magda Dziadosz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 11:25
Member (2004)
English to Polish
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Polish May 5, 2008

Hi Taylor,
You will find many French loan words in Polish, examples which pop up to my mind:
ekran, szansa, szef, szarża, parasol, ekipa, mur, bagietka, bilet, krem, awans, bukiet...

I guess the highest "intake" of French words has happened in 17-18th century and the words came together with French wifes of Polish kings. Actually, French was a language of the court back then and remained a first foreign language for many until the beginning of 20th century.

You will find the answers to your "when" and "why" questions studying the history of Poland. Search for Jan Chryzostom Pasek and his memoirs and for the king Jan III Sobieski and his wife Marie who probably can be made responsible for many French loan words in Polish

HTH,
Magda


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Taylor Kirk  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:25
Portuguese to English
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TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! May 5, 2008

This is incredibly helpful!

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TranslateThis  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:25
Spanish to English
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useful link (Polish) May 5, 2008

What an interesting topic!

I just wanted to share the link below; it contains a few more examples and might be of help:
http://www.polishforums.com/polish_words_shared_french-17_15513_0.html

You may also want to contact Professor Anna Bochnak who teaches Systematic Study of French Loan Words in Polish:
https://www.usosweb.uj.edu.pl/kontroler.php?_action=actionx:katalog2/osoby/pokazOsobe(os_id:50763)&lang=2

I am really curious to read about the other Eastern European languages!


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IwonaASzymaniak  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:25
English to Polish
+ ...
Some more examples in Polish and other useful links May 6, 2008

I tried to avoid repetitions:
afisz, aleja, apaszka, armia, atelier, balkon, batalion, bilateralny, beret, beszamel, beza, bransoleta, brylować, dama, etykieta, falbany, fotel, gabinet, galanteria, garderoba, garsonka, intryga, kadet, kategoryczny, kokieteria, kostium, krawat, makijaż, magazyn, maniery, perfumy, restauracja, salon, szal, szosa, tiul, toaleta, wazon, żorżeta, and many, many more.

They may be categorized by areas of life:
court life: dama, etykieta, intryga
military: szarża, armia
art: afisz, atelier
fashion: garsonka, tiul. żorżeta
beauty: perfumy, fryzjer
jewelry: biżuteria, bransoletka
architecture and furniture: salon, fotel, pasaż
cuisine: beszamel, beza
diplomacy: attache, charge d'affaires, depesza

Some more expressions used in their original French form without phonetic or spelling changes (any changes are due to the fact I do not French fonts ): au courante, carte blanche, en face, faux pas, par excellence, savoir vivre

(please let me know if the meaning of these words is not clear to you).

Briefly,
• French influences onto the Polish language started with a brief episode in Henry's III of France life as Henry of Valois, king of Poland or rather of the the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (3 months 1573-1574).
• Growth of political position of France in Europe
• France oriented politics of the Polish court
• Marriages: Marie Louise Gonzaga de Nevers (known as Maria Ludwika), queen consort to two Polish kings: Władysław IV (1645 ), and Jan II Kazimierz (1649), and Marie Casimire Louise de la Grange d'Arquien (known as Maria Kazimiera) who became a lady-in-waiting to the first at the age of 5. She married Jan Sobieski in 1665 who was elected the King of Poland in 1672
• the rule of the Wettins of Saxony in Poland and their French sympathies (architecture, painting, fashion)
• Napoleonic Era and wars (Polish Legions serving in the French army from 1790 to 1810, and afterwards The Great Emigration mainly to France: emigration of political elites from Poland from 1831–1870. Since the end of the 18th century, a major role in Polish political life was played by people who carried out their activities outside the country as émigré. To name a few: Chopin, Mickiewcz, Słowacki, Krasiński (Polish poets), Lelewel (historian), Joseph Conrad, Maria Curie.

Useful links:
Porayski-Pomsta, Józef;
Lexical borrowings from French in contemporary Polish. Structural-semantic characteristics
available from: The Linguistic Guide (05/2007)
http://www.ceeol.com/aspx/authordetails.aspx?authorid=f66520c3-bd77-4ce9-8f60-fa8c6f4a0792

The article offers a presentiation of the capacity of lexical borrowings from French mentioned in "PWN Universal Polish Dictionary" edited by Stanisław Dubisz as well as their assimilation in Polish language system.

Porayski-Pomsta, Józef
Vocabulary of Foreign Origin in the Universal Dictionary of Polish Language ed. by S. Dubisz
availbale from: The Linguistic Guide (04/2006)
http://www.ceeol.com/aspx/authordetails.aspx?authorid=f66520c3-bd77-4ce9-8f60-fa8c6f4a0792
This article deals with other languages too but gives useful information and comparisons. It analyzes lexis of foreign origin and the way it is presented in the Universal Dictionary of Polish Language ed. by Stanisław Dubisz. The first part of the article shows how the dictionary in question differs from other 20th century dictionaries in the way foreign lexis is presented. S. Dubisz’s one provides us with accurate etymology, which, according to the author of the article, better meets didactic and cognitive needs.The dictionary contains 13,888 entries (of 100,000 altogether) of foreign origin: French (3,827), Latin (2,765), German (2,595), English (1,820), Greek (1,262), which is 88.31% of all entries in the book. There are lexical borrowings from 54 languages. Apparently, among lexical borrowings in standard Polish, chronologically older ones are predominant, of Greek, Latin, German and French origin. Little influence of Russian on Polish lexis can be explained by geo-political reasons, which caused reluctance to the language. Language minorities also had a low impact on Polish, which is due to the predominant role of our language in the country. Distant relationships between the Polish and the Jews resulted in scarce traces of Jewish language in Polish. In conclusion, the author expresses his doubts concerning the common opinion about a great impact of English on Polish language, although it only refers to standard variation of Polish.

Both articles are quite recent and available at a fee of € 2.5 (quite cheap, I would say) but perhaps your university have access to these resources through Athens or similar mechanism.

There is a lot of material about the topic of your interest as it refres to Polish, starting with "Historia języka polskiego" (The History of The Polish Language) by Zenon Klemensiewicz (1999). Most of them are in Polish though.

But some resources are in French:
La langue française en Pologne, Revue des Etude Slaves XIV (1934) by Witold Doroszewski

You may also contact Polish universities.

Greetings,

Iwonka



[Zmieniono 2008-05-06 06:06]

[Zmieniono 2008-05-07 04:40]

[Zmieniono 2008-05-07 04:44]


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Zamira*****  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
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Member (2006)
English to Uzbek
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French loan words in Russian - there are so many May 6, 2008

багаж, витраж, макияж, пляж, визаж, мезальянс, альянс, бигуди, картон, типаж,фасон, коллаж,этаж, бель-этаж, антураж, экипаж, резюме,шезлонг, бульвар, корсет, суфле, суфлер, жалюзи, букле, кабинет, шарлатан, шедевр,балет, ложа, маскарад, паркет, педант, жилет, журналист, кулисы, мораль, портрет, профиль, туалет, пижон, манто, жабо, кашне, кашпо, абажур, парашют, жюри, гран-при, абордаж, абонемент, авангард, витрина, виртуоз, балет, дебют,жонглёр, дезодорант, одеколон, каламбур, калька, камуфляж, манёвр, жаргон, жетон, бибилиотека, маразм, маньяк, неглиже, драже, плиссе, гляссе, ноктюрн, саквояж, саботаж, салон, фарс, бульон, оливье, шевелюра, волан, сортир.

I have looked up most of them here:

http://www.infrance.ru/forum/showthread.php?t=12358

Incredible to find on that thread that "шаромыжник" is of French origin too:

А также французского происхождения слово "шаромыжник" (попрошайка, прихлебатель). Когда наполеоновская армия бежала из России, то солдаты обращались к русским крестьянам с протянутой рукой, начиная свою просьбу словами "Cher ami"



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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 12:25
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
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Estonian does not belong to this group May 6, 2008

taylorreigne wrote:

Russian
Polish
Czech
Slovak
Lithuanian
Estonian
Hungarian
Latvian
Romanian
Serbo-Croatian
Belarussian
Slovenian
Ukrainian
Bosnian


Nor do Latvian or Lithuanian.
Estonian and Finnish are not related to Polish, Russian etc.
Anyway, they have got most of their loan-words via German and Russian.

[Bearbeitet am 2008-05-06 06:52]


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Andrew Levine  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:25
Member (2007)
French to English
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not just Slavic May 6, 2008

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

Estonian does not belong to this group

Nor do Latvian or Lithuanian.
Estonian and Finnish are not related to Polish, Russian etc.


So why don't they belong to the group? The original poster asked for loanwords in Eastern European languages, not just in Slavic languages.


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Barbara Wiegel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:25
English to German
+ ...
Not to be left out - entract (антракт) May 6, 2008

Zamira wrote:

багаж, витраж, макияж, пляж, визаж, мезальянс, альянс, бигуди, картон, типаж,фасон, коллаж,этаж, бель-этаж, антураж, экипаж, резюме,шезлонг, бульвар, корсет, суфле, суфлер, жалюзи, букле, кабинет, шарлатан, шедевр,балет, ложа, маскарад, паркет, педант, жилет, журналист, кулисы, мораль, портрет, профиль, туалет, пижон, манто, жабо, кашне, кашпо, абажур, парашют, жюри, гран-при, абордаж, абонемент, авангард, витрина, виртуоз, балет, дебют,жонглёр, дезодорант, одеколон, каламбур, калька, камуфляж, манёвр, жаргон, жетон, бибилиотека, маразм, маньяк, неглиже, драже, плиссе, гляссе, ноктюрн, саквояж, саботаж, салон, фарс, бульон, оливье, шевелюра, волан, сортир.



The Russian word for "intermission" (theater, opera etc.) is also borrowed from French and one of my favourites... - антракт.

Another one - and a delicious one for that matter - is жульен (Julienne), one of my favourite Russian appetizers.

Best,
Barbara


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Csaba Ban  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 11:25
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
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a few ideas May 6, 2008

I think you should consult etymological dictionaries of each of these languages to find out when a particular loan word was first used.

You may have to count with the fact that some French loan words may be now outdated (either replaced by English loan words or internal developments, or the entire concept may now be obsolete).

Certain languages tend to be more open loan words than others. Czech, for example, hardly uses any, except for recent loan words, mostly from English. Hungarian vocabulary is an interesting mixture, and we also use probably a few hundred words from French (some of them via German though).

Romanian is the only neo-Romance language in Eastern Europe. Romanian imported a large number of French (and, to a lesser extent, Italian) loan words in the 19th and 20th centuries. Since the language is based on Latin, it may be hard to tell whether a particular word is a product of organic development or a loan word from another neo-Romance language. As a rough guide I would think that "long" words (at least 3 syllables) tend to be loan words, while shorter ones (where the original Latin is more corrupted anyway) tend to be organic developments.

You also have to investigate the direction of lending. Most French words come from Latin. Sometimes it's hard to tell if a particular loan word in Hungarian (or any other language) comes from French, Latin or Italian (or first French then through English or German).

Another aspect worth looking at is the usage frequency of a particular loan word. Some languages may have a large number of French loan words in the most frequently used 5,000 (10,000, etc.) words, while other languages may still have quite a few French loan words which are used far less often.

Here are a few French loan words in Hungarian:

antant, apropó, budoár, delizsánsz, aperitiv, argó, azúr, zsúr, rúzs, zsurnál, ankét, enteriőr, entellektüel, brosúra, marzs, sarzsi, szüfrazsett, burgonya (potato), bürokrácia, debütál, desszert, püré, smafu (j m'en fous), intim, kokettál, kampány, bisztró (Ru-Fr-Hu), kokárda, kompót, migrén, mustár, zsáner, burzsoá, burzsoázia, kanapé, rekamié, poén, póker (Fr-En-Hu), prés, póz, rezsó (réchaud), sezlony (chaise longue), gardrób, szabotázs, zsargon, szósz, kuss, adu (atout), trikó, lila, szuvenír, retúr, vitrin, volán, vizit, zseton, zseni, zseniális, zselé, zsűri, zsakett, glasszé, fotel, szalon, manőver, etc.


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Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 12:25
Turkish to English
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Turkish May 6, 2008

This probably falls outside the geographical area you are interested in, but Turkish acquired a vast number of French loan words in the second half of the nineteenth century, at a time when the country was undergoing a process of modernisation and Westernisation, and the names of virtually all technological items along with new scientific concepts and ideas that were adopted from the West in that period are French loan words.

Just about every word describing the components of motor vehicles come from French, e.g.:

Turkish (French) - English

far (phare) - headlight
direksiyon (direction) - steering wheel
buji (bougie) - spark plug
debriyaj (debrayage) - clutch
vites (vitesse) - gear
bagaj (bagage) - boot, trunk
fren (frein) - brake


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Jan Sundström  Identity Verified
Sweden
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English to Swedish
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Lithuanian examples May 6, 2008

Hi all,

Very interesting topic!

I think it's relevant to discuss even non-slavic languages in the same topic, because they usually follow the same pattern of cultural influence.
I.e. when Poland was influenced by France, the Baltic states also got their share!

Another interesting aspect is to see the absence of new loan words during the time behind the iron curtain, and whether some more "open" countries had more opportunities to pick up foreign words (maybe Yugoslavia under Tito?).

Here are some Lithuanian examples:
http://www.google.se/search?q=pranc%20site:zodziai.lt

I'm sure I can find a bunch for Latvia and even Estonia, with a bit of googling.

/J

[Edited at 2008-05-06 15:34]


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Taylor Kirk  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:25
Portuguese to English
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TOPIC STARTER
All Eastern European Languages Belong Here May 6, 2008

I'm covering the languages of a certain region, not a family of languages, and I am only looking at French-derived words, even if there are not many in a particular language. In fact I'm tracking why certain languages have more or fewer French derived words. If someone is a native Estonian speaker and can't think of many examples in that language, I would definitely want to know that! I've only studied Polish and Russian so the Baltic languages are way out of my league.


Heinrich Pesch wrote:

taylorreigne wrote:

Russian
Polish
Czech
Slovak
Lithuanian
Estonian
Hungarian
Latvian
Romanian
Serbo-Croatian
Belarussian
Slovenian
Ukrainian
Bosnian


Nor do Latvian or Lithuanian.
Estonian and Finnish are not related to Polish, Russian etc.
Anyway, they have got most of their loan-words via German and Russian.

[Bearbeitet am 2008-05-06 06:52]


[Edited at 2008-05-06 20:39]


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French Loan Words in Eastern European Languages

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