Thursday, June 16, 2011

Language and Cognates - The quick access to language

Language can be quickly learned if you understand some of the mechanics behind the language. In romance languages there are many cognates which are words that are similar to English except for the ending. In Spanish for example, words that end in idad generally convert to ity. Communidad becomes community; eternidad becomes eternity; deformidad becomes deformity. As long as you understand the ending you can immediately translate into English or Spanish. There are 5 or 6 common cognate endings in Spanish for example. Knowing the ending means knowing the meaning. Italian, French and probably German works the same way. Therefore, it is important to understand the cognates in your target language and you can increase your vocabulary tremendously.