Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Similarity of Romanian and Spanish to Latin

Romanian and Spanish are both Romance languages. They are descended from Latin and show a number of similarities to Latin and to one another. Here is a list of ten words with the Latin, Spanish and Romanian equivalents:

chair sella silla scaun
cloud nubes nube nor
flower flos flor floare
fruit fructus fruta fruct
gold aurum oro aur
milk lactis leche lapte
sun solis sol soare
table mensa mesa masa
time tempus tiempo timp
tooth dente diente dinte

Most of the words on the list are very similar. The exceptions are the Romanian words scaun and nor. With the exception of the Spanish word oro, all the words begin with the same letter. A few Spanish and Romanian words are almost identical- they include mesa/masa (table), tiempo/timp (time), diente/dinte (tooth) and fruta/fruct (fruit).

The Spanish words for chair, cloud and sun show more similarity to Latin than do the Romanian words. The Romanian word for gold reflects greater similarity to Latin than does the Spanish word. With the remaining six words, both languages have words similar to Latin.

Romanian has word-final consonant clusters which do not occur in Spanish. These clusters occur in fruct and timp. Nine of the Spanish words end in a vowel, but only four of the Romanian words do.

The vocabulary list shows that Spanish and Romanian are descendants of Latin. The three languages share many similar words. In contrast to Spanish, Romanian permits word-final consonant clusters.

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