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Words to mean Friend

Posted: 05 Oct 2018 16:37
by holbuzvala
Hi all,

I’m thinking about possibly ways to derive the word for ‘friend’ in Asvolai. I’m not keen to have it stand as its own root, but rather come from a verb or adjective. It seems to be that the French ‘ami’ has something to do with love; and the Arabic (MSA) is sadiiq, which has to do with trust. My ideas thus far for ‘friend’ are paltry:

1. The object of ‘to trust’
2. The subject of ‘accompany’
3. The subject of ‘near/close’
4. Some word relating to ‘sharing’

I’m open to ideas. How do your natlangs and conlangs express words for friends and friendship?

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 05 Oct 2018 17:38
by Salmoneus
holbuzvala wrote:
05 Oct 2018 16:37
Hi all,

I’m thinking about possibly ways to derive the word for ‘friend’ in Asvolai. I’m not keen to have it stand as its own root, but rather come from a verb or adjective. It seems to be that the French ‘ami’ has something to do with love; and the Arabic (MSA) is sadiiq, which has to do with trust. My ideas thus far for ‘friend’ are paltry:

1. The object of ‘to trust’
2. The subject of ‘accompany’
3. The subject of ‘near/close’
4. Some word relating to ‘sharing’

I’m open to ideas. How do your natlangs and conlangs express words for friends and friendship?
English 'friend' literally translates of course as 'lover'.

But I'd begin by questioning the assumption: before asking what word is used for the concept of a friend, ask whether there's a concept of a friend, and if so what that concept is.

For instance, if your friend word is prototypically used of sexual partners, perhaps a some sexual term might provide it; if it's used prototypically of comrades in battle, a different set of terms might be used; likewise if it's prototypically concerned with drinking buddies, or with business associates, or with in-laws, or with age-groups.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 05 Oct 2018 17:56
by Pabappa
Poswa and Pabappa derive all of these from the same root: friend, respect, love, cooperation, influence, neighbor. The bare root didn't survive so none of these words is more basic than any other, but this may give you some ideas. There are also compound words for friends derived from the verbs for smiling, being happy, hugging, and cuddling.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 05 Oct 2018 18:31
by Creyeditor
Omlueuet words uses a word that means also 'cousin' to mean 'colleague'. This is similar to some varities of Indonesian 'saudara' which means 'brother' (it's a Sanskrit loanword actually) but also is used for some kind of friends.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 06 Oct 2018 00:02
by Reyzadren
In my conlang, friend is its own word by itself, underived.

:con: griuskant (without the conscript)

stens. stenson.
/'stəns. 'stənsɔn/
friend. friend-EB-PASS
Friend. Friendship.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 06 Oct 2018 00:41
by Dormouse559
holbuzvala wrote:
05 Oct 2018 16:37
It seems to be that the French ‘ami’ has something to do with love
Yes, most Romance languages have a descendant of Latin amicus, which derives from amo, "to love".

Salmoneus' mention of drinking buddies reminds me of companion, "one with whom one shares bread". Words for siblings or other family members could work, bro. If in the conlang's culture, friends are supposed to come from the same, or a particular other, social group, I could imagine using the name for that group.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 06 Oct 2018 13:08
by Salmoneus
Dormouse559 wrote:
06 Oct 2018 00:41
holbuzvala wrote:
05 Oct 2018 16:37
It seems to be that the French ‘ami’ has something to do with love
Yes, most Romance languages have a descendant of Latin amicus, which derives from amo, "to love".

Salmoneus' mention of drinking buddies reminds me of companion, "one with whom one shares bread".
Ooh, I never thought about that.

But along those lines, sleeping arrangements may be relevant, if this is a culture in which same-gender age-cohorts sleep in barracks (as many cultures are). In which case you could have a parallel to English comrade "one related to the bedroom". Along similar lines we have concubine "one with whom one lies" (the original meaning would have been 'recline' or 'sleep', but by euphemism it became 'have sex with').

English also has cohort, ultimately something like "with whom one shares an enclosure"? In Latin it was used for ship crews. And colleague, "one with whom one shares authority for having dispatched an ambassador", as well as conspirator "one together with whom one breathes".

English mate is almost parallel to "companion" - it's "one with whom one shares food" (cognate to "meat"). Fellow is "one together with whom one lays down property" or maybe "one together with whom one lies as regards property" or "one together with whom one is in a property-related situation" or something like that, I don't know Old Norse well enough. Buddy is of unknown origin, but may originally be "one with whom one shares plunder" (i.e. booty). These words replace the older fere, "one with whom one travels".

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 06 Oct 2018 14:00
by Gluestick
Bičiulis, one of the more rarely used words meaning friend in Lithuanian, was derrived from the word for bees. Since bees were considered to be sacred animals back in the pagan days, a person with whom you could share your bees with was considered to be extremely trustworthy, best friend for life of a sort.
Although the common neutral one, draugas, has its own root, I think.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 07 Oct 2018 13:39
by holbuzvala
Thanks all for your replies - interesting stuff. I've decided to go with a construction that might be rendered into English as 'co-singer', or 'the person with whom one sings'. Seems chummy and idiomatic.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 07 Oct 2018 14:12
by Tristan Radicz
Gluestick wrote:
06 Oct 2018 14:00
Although the common neutral one, draugas, has its own root, I think.
Balto-Slavic *dråugås must have meant something like "brother-in-arms" initially, if related to Proto-Germanic *druhtiz 'host, troop'. Alternatively, if the Slavic adjectival meaning of "other, another" is basal and not a semantic innovation, it might be ultimately a precise cognate to Old Norse draugr and Avestan draoγa 'lie, mischief'.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 09 Oct 2018 03:49
by Lambuzhao
Gluestick wrote:
06 Oct 2018 14:00
Bičiulis, one of the more rarely used words meaning friend in Lithuanian, was derrived from the word for bees. Since bees were considered to be sacred animals back in the pagan days, a person with whom you could share your bees with was considered to be extremely trustworthy, best friend for life of a sort.
Although the common neutral one, draugas, has its own root, I think.
:lit: draugas and Slavic cousin-cognates like :ukr: дру́гий (drúhyj) 'second' (obs.) 'other', ultimately come from
PIE *dʰrowgʰos [->] *dʰrewgʰ- (“to hold, hold fast, support”)
There are a lot of other cognates for this in the Germanic languages, which range from :got: gadrauhts 'warrior', to :non: dróttin 'lord', and many others in between.

A friend could therefore be a 'second' to one, or one's 'supporter'.

Reminds me of the phrase in Spanish for a very close friend, or a spouse, or other soulmatish person: mi otro yo 'my other me'
[;)]

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 09 Oct 2018 03:59
by Lambuzhao
Gluestick wrote:
06 Oct 2018 14:00
Bičiulis, one of the more rarely used words meaning friend in Lithuanian, was derived from the word for bees. Since bees were considered to be sacred animals back in the pagan days, a person with whom you could share your bees with was considered to be extremely trustworthy, best friend for life of a sort.
In the Yucatan, Maya have handed down nests of stingless bees (abejas meliponas) as family heirlooms, or treasures shared/exchanged between friends.

Amazing how, in two vastly different places of the world, bees can literally seal friendships. Kind of a sweet deal, no?
[;)]

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 09 Oct 2018 04:13
by Lambuzhao
Tristan Radicz wrote:
07 Oct 2018 14:12
Gluestick wrote:
06 Oct 2018 14:00
Although the common neutral one, draugas, has its own root, I think.
Balto-Slavic *dråugås must have meant something like "brother-in-arms" initially, if related to Proto-Germanic *druhtiz 'host, troop'. Alternatively, if the Slavic adjectival meaning of "other, another" is basal and not a semantic innovation, it might be ultimately a precise cognate to Old Norse draugr and Avestan draoγa 'lie, mischief'.
If there be a connection to the PIE homonyms *dʰrewgʰ- (deceive, mislead) and *dʰrewgʰ- (support, retain), it might be thru 'holding fast':
When one lies, one holds fast to a story that is untrue or deceptive, as if it were the truth.
When one is a friend, one holds fast to the side/aide of their comrade.

I'm just postulating here; I don't think there's any substantial proof of a connection. [:S]

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 09 Oct 2018 14:37
by Tristan Radicz
Lambuzhao wrote:
09 Oct 2018 04:13
If there be a connection to the PIE homonyms *dʰrewgʰ- (deceive, mislead) and *dʰrewgʰ- (support, retain), it might be thru 'holding fast':
When one lies, one holds fast to a story that is untrue or deceptive, as if it were the truth.
When one is a friend, one holds fast to the side/aide of their comrade.

I'm just postulating here; I don't think there's any substantial proof of a connection. [:S]
Yes, this is another possibility - if those are not two homonymic roots as usually assumed, it may very well be that we're dealing with a root with derived forms, the semantic connexion between which was already obscured at the (late) PIE level.

Technically, a hypothetical initial meaning of "another" (or rather, "be another", since it looks like the e-grade verb as attested in Germanic was the basis of all the other forms) could reconcile all the various meanings of the different reflexes, but this meaning is a specifically Slavic thing and there's no indication it's not a late development.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 10 Oct 2018 11:04
by Iyionaku
The chinese word for friend is 朋友 (peng2you3).
It consists of the characters 朋 and 友, both mean "friend" independently (but these words are not used on their own).

The character 友 is an idiogrammic compound consisting of two hands (meeting in friendship): 又 + 又
朋 is a pictogramm of a bird that used to be pronounced identically to the word of friend, according to wiktionary.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 10 Oct 2018 15:48
by WeepingElf
The Old Albic word for 'friend', valara, is a derivative of vala 'heart'.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 10 Oct 2018 21:39
by WeepingElf
Iyionaku wrote:
10 Oct 2018 11:04
朋 is a pictogramm of a bird that used to be pronounced identically to the word of friend, according to wiktionary.
Why does that bird look like two moons?

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 10 Oct 2018 22:33
by sangi39
WeepingElf wrote:
10 Oct 2018 21:39
Iyionaku wrote:
10 Oct 2018 11:04
朋 is a pictogramm of a bird that used to be pronounced identically to the word of friend, according to wiktionary.
Why does that bird look like two moons?
Apparently... I guess the best term might be "calligraphic coincidence". Some suggest it started out as a character for two strings of cowry shells (used as currency):

Image

These were later interpreted as the wings of a Peng (a large mythological bird) or a Phoenix, which I can see making sense given the character for the latter looked like this:

Image

And in the Small Seal Script they do seem to have added a "head" to the character for "friend", presumably on that basis:

Image

And apparently this character also appears as a substitution for 鳳 (male Phoenix).

However, it appears that some scribes instead connected and simplified the smaller vertical lines (presumably at this stage being "feathers") resulting in something like this:

Image

So, yeah, something along the lines of the way characters were written changing over time led to "two strings of cowry shells" becoming more graphically similar to "two moons".

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 11 Oct 2018 21:49
by Omzinesý
I checked Finnish word ystävä. Its etymology seems to be unclear.

One explanation was:
yskä mean cough (n)
it could have something to do with 'breast'
yskätä could mean 'to hug'
and
yskättäva => ystävä could mean 'a hugged one' in the beginning

That's a cute etymology but I doesn't seem too plausible.

Re: Words to mean Friend

Posted: 17 Oct 2018 20:36
by Birdlang
In Indonesian, they also have the word teman which is sort of like a general friend, it comes from Tamil I believe. It’s the same in Malay and Sundanese (though there’s a few words for friend in this one). In Romance languages, like as mentioned French ‘ami’ and Spanish ‘amigo’, come from the Latin word for lover, amicus, and probably got lowered in meaning from there. In Hindi, they have p̱ẖraim̄d which comes from English, and another word from Sanskrit which I forgot.
In my conlangs the word for friend varies, but the original meaning means one who stays close to ones heart.