This study traces the steps that led to the lexicon-semantic change for the indication of "left" and "right" from Latin to modern Romance languages. With the partial exception of Italian, starting from the Middle Ages, the main Romance languages begin to come up beside the words derived from the Latin etymology SINISTRA with other terms that designate the same meaning, but which have non-Latin origin and similar semantic root (idea of what is curved and imperfect). The cause lies in a complex phenomenon of tabooistic interdiction, which leads to the progressive disappearance of the previous forms and the generation of new ones. The change in the way of expressing the "left" would also seem to determine by analogy a new mode of expression of the "right" in most of the Romance area, no longer derived from the Latin ethymon DEXTRA, but from the Latin DIRECTA.

"Sinistra" nelle lingue romanze: storia di un'interdizione tabuistica

Fabrizio Costantini
2019

Abstract

This study traces the steps that led to the lexicon-semantic change for the indication of "left" and "right" from Latin to modern Romance languages. With the partial exception of Italian, starting from the Middle Ages, the main Romance languages begin to come up beside the words derived from the Latin etymology SINISTRA with other terms that designate the same meaning, but which have non-Latin origin and similar semantic root (idea of what is curved and imperfect). The cause lies in a complex phenomenon of tabooistic interdiction, which leads to the progressive disappearance of the previous forms and the generation of new ones. The change in the way of expressing the "left" would also seem to determine by analogy a new mode of expression of the "right" in most of the Romance area, no longer derived from the Latin ethymon DEXTRA, but from the Latin DIRECTA.
Romance Linguistics; Romance Languages; lexical change; Tabooism; Medieval Literature; right and lef
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/302581
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