Iberian languages

Articles in ‘Iberian languages’

Spanish food guide

October 4th, 2007

With considerable help from my partner and lending heavily on the writings of Simon Rice and Francis Barrett I’ve been putting together this Spanish food guide. A better desciption though would be “food which is eaten in Spain”.

Photo of goose barnacles  

Early days and in truth, not quite a guide yet, but a bit more than a glossary. So far it has a Catalan bias which I intend to rectify over the next few months. Any mistakes, omissions or comments please let me know. Nick

River Guadix

September 21st, 2007

The River Guadix, a sub-tributary of the Guadiana Menor, which flows through the town of the same name must lay claim to world’s most tautological geographical name.

Wikipedia claims in tautological place names:

Río Guadix, Spain (The River River RiverRío is “river” in Spanish, Guad < w?d? is “river” in Arabic and Ix is “river” in Phoenician)

Origin of escargot

September 8th, 2007

Wikipedia tells me that Catalan is the origin of the French and posh English word for snail, escargot. This would be a corruption of “es cargol – the snail”, the es being the salat definite article still used in the Balearics and parts of the Costa Brava, once more widespread in Catalan and Gascon speaking areas.

The origin of the River Ebro’s name

August 30th, 2007

The Ebro’s importance is reflected in the name of the Iberian Peninsula, which almost certainly comes from the river, first known as the Iber and Iberus and Ebro, and not the other way around. It was first used in the 6th century BC by a Greek author in reference to the Iberians, or the people who lived along the Iberus ( Ebro) river. Ultimately the word may well derive from the Basque words ibai (river) and ibar (valley), and these from ur meaning water. Linguists have noted similarities with the names of 200 other European rivers and streams (e.g. Ibar in Serbia, Ebrach and several Eberbach in Germany, Irwell in The UK) giving a tantalising clue as to a form of Basque being once spoken throughout Europe before the arrival of Indo-European tribes and languages.  More on the Ebro