#2352. 「動物とその肉を表す英単語」の神話 (2)[french][lexicology][loan_word][language_myth][lexical_stratification]


 「#331. 動物とその肉を表す英単語」 ([2010-03-24-1]),「#332. 「動物とその肉を表す英単語」の神話」 ([2010-03-25-1]),「#1583. swine vs pork の社会言語学的意義」 ([2013-08-27-1]) の記事で,有名な語彙の対立 calf/veal, deer/venison, fowl/poultry, sheep/mutton, swine (pig)/pork (bacon), ox/beef について,この話題のウラを考えた.Denison and Hogg (16) も,別の角度から「ウラ」を指摘している.

. . . the introduction of French loans for food, such as beef, pork and mutton, is sometimes held to demonstrate a considerable degree of bilingualism. This view owes a great deal to Scott's Ivanhoe, which claims that animals on the hoof were called by their English names, but by French names when cooked. The initial reaction is to believe that; it is only when we recall terms such as English lamb (alongside mutton) or Anglo-Norman cattle alongside English cow that its plausibility diminishes. It is more likely, although less romantically appealing, to suggest that French loans were most probable in administration and learning, and that by and large 'ordinary' words were only borrowed in the few areas where there was constant interaction between English and French speakers. This neither demonstrates extensive bilingualism nor even that there was extensive borrowing beyond a few specific areas.

 なるほど,確かに lamb は,「#146. child の複数形が children なわけ」 ([2009-09-20-1]) で古英語での特殊な屈折として触れたように,ゲルマン系の本来語である.この語は,現在,動物としての仔羊も表すのみならず,仔羊肉も表わす.本来語が肉の意味で用いられるということは,「定番」から外れているということである.なお,OED によると,lamb の仔羊肉の意味は17世紀になって初めて発達したとあるが,MED によると,a1399 の「肉」の語義での用例が確かにある.
 また,cattle も,「#95. まだある! Norman French と Central French の二重語」 ([2009-07-31-1]) で触れた通り,Norman French 由来の単語に違いないが,こちらは生きた家畜の意味のみであり,フランス借用語としてふさわしいはずの肉の意味はない.

 ・ Denison, David and Richard Hogg. "Overview." Chapter 1 of A History of the English Language. Ed. Richard Hogg and David Denison. Cambridge: CUP, 2006. 1--42.

Referrer (Inside): [2018-07-23-1] [2016-03-05-1]

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