metalingüística

We’ve taken to using Greek meta, which meant ‘beside, after,’ as a prefix meaning ‘beyond, transcending.’ For example, metafísica/metaphysics deals with things that go beyond the realm of physics and the other natural sciences. In another life—that phrase makes it seem as if I’m going to keep talking about metaphysics, but I’m not—in another life, I say, I taught mathematics, and from time to time I pointed out to my students things that could be called metamatemáticas/metamathematical. For instance, if a multiple-choice question on a test includes an answer with the word always or never in it, that is probably not the right choice, because few things are as absolute as a word like always or never implies. Notice that this goes beyond mathematics: a teacher of English or history could give the same advice about multiple-choice tests in those subjects.

The field of metalingüística/metalinguistics goes beyond the study of language per se and deals with the way language affects culture. Today, after 127 postings, I’ve decided to take a metalinguistic look at this blog (and the math teacher can’t help noticing that 127 is the sum of a perfect square and a perfect cube, 10 squared plus 3 cubed). In particular, I thought I’d list some of the search phrases that have brought people here over the five months that I’ve been writing these entries. As you read through those phrases, I think you’ll be impressed at the way search-engine algorithms were able to make sense of typos and misspellings, e.g. spainish (Spanish), siffix (suffix), barrowed (borrowed), twon (two), and sabeth (Sabbath). I also think you’ll find some of these search phrases funny or strange, like “line on top of i in the spanish word ir,” when of course there is no line or macron or accent mark on top of the i in Spanish ir.

Out of curiosity, I’ve tried some of these phrases on Google, and they haven’t always brought up this blog as a hit. If any of the words strike your fancy and you’re curious what I’ve written about them, remember that in addition to using external search engines, you can search within all the postings of this blog by entering a word or phrase in the search box near the upper right corner of the page.

So that’s the gist of posting number 128 (and the math teacher can’t help pointing out that not only are 1, 2 and 8 all powers of 2, but 128 itself is 2 to the 7th power). Without further ado I’ll say adieu, and here is the promised list of search phrases:

word connections

English word connections

English doublets

every english word in spanish form

what happens when a person eats crazy weed

where did pigritude come from

what does vaiven mean in English

what are the uncommon verbs in barrowed words

verdi quete

rhyming Spanish idioms

line on top of i in the spanish word ir

resemblance of hipopotamo with horse

french pear flower

hackberry butterfly

oct means eight why isnt october the eighth month of the year

verdugo last name negative

what is the spelling the word large in trhe following languages:spanish, french, italian

refudiate etymology

llevo spainish

latin english norman spanish vocabulary recognize

who sung te quiero verde in spanish

spanish capicua origins

mythology characters that were sang froid at a time of danger

spanish word for little feat

a group encounter defiled wordreference

modern altar

muerto moriras john donne

hoah ya quiro tu muertos spanish

a spanish word that means twon things

what is bronco to spanish

is fiesta a cognate or borrowed word

spanish words that have a r in the middle

avenience latin

what words enidng in y that means harsh, unpleasant sound?

white one abalorio

spanish words of middle parts

spanish matching sound words

children’s books 1930s with spanish words

the word sabado and sabeth

is almendra an spanish name?

wordconnections.wordpress.com houman rights

abd in romance linguistics

2 words used english come from spanish [It sounds like someone was trying to get an answer to a homework assignment.]

descargas de diccionario español ingles

half a duck

this is the forest primeval

don afido [Does Spanish ever call an áfido/aphid a don?]

uncommon verb words

the word in engand and the word in english

what latin preposition means “on the outside”?

whats the idiom mistress mary,quite contrary

word English

what is a subibaja

Spanish diminutive científicos

words that begin with aage

ranunculus spoon [I think the person was trying for Edward Lear’s runcible spoon.]

primeval latin

how today december in spanish

rana spanish animal to English

when a man calls you dama in Spanish

significado de la palabra siffix

did latin verbum mean verb

dame una querida meaning in English

buttercup latin name?

latin contralateral

what is a common expression in spanish which is equivilant to “the dog ate my homework”

© 2011 Steven Schwartzman

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kami
    Jan 26, 2011 @ 01:35:44

    jajajajajaja
    Me he reído mucho con tu post. Realmente frases raras 😄

    Reply

  2. wordconnections
    Jan 26, 2011 @ 01:56:23

    Thanks, Kami. I’m glad you had a good time with it. I certainly had fun putting it together.

    Reply

  3. lexiekahn
    Jan 26, 2011 @ 05:15:46

    ¡Qué blog tan interestante! Y ¡qué trabajador publicar todos los días!
    Thanks for your comments on my site.

    Reply

  4. wordconnections
    Jan 26, 2011 @ 09:15:17

    Gracias, Judith. Tiene razón que es mucho trabajo publicar todos los días. I’ve heard that Guatemalan weavers purposely put a wrong stitch into each piece soon after they start it to keep from feeling that they have to be perfect. Following their example, not too long after I began this blog I purposely skipped a day to keep from feeling obligated to post something every single day. Once I purposely skipped two days. I’ve been averaging about six posts a week.

    Los dos tenemos un apellido que termina en -man.

    Reply

  5. Trackback: A note for subscribers to Spanish-English Word Connections « Spanish-English Word Connections
  6. Trackback: Some fun with search criteria « Portraits of Wildflowers

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If you encounter an unfamiliar technical term in any of these postings, check the Glossary in the bar across the top of the page.
©2011–2016 Steven Schwartzman
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