Jim Dulhunty (s3159706@student.anu.edu.au)
Fri, 25 Aug 2000 12:23:35 -0800

Awhile ago (actually quite awhile ago) somebody on the list tried to derive
the name of the Geara Doga from French, with the meaning of 'war dog'. I'm
pretty sure I remember it being shot down, but for some reason the linguist
within me was thinking about this earlier in the week, and I think I've got
a theory that works. Well, here it is:

Geara Doga means 'war duke', not 'war dog'.

First of all, why not 'war dog'? Well, a fair case can be made for 'geara'
being a cognate of 'guerre' (war), but a similar argument for 'doga' being
a cognate of 'chien' (dog) is not really supportable. 'Dog' is a good old
Engilsh word with a Germanic root. You could argue then that Geara Doga is
a mixture of French and German, a 'Euromash', but then you would end up
with 'Geara Hund', 'hund' being the German word for 'dog'; the German
cognate for 'dog' refers to a specific type of dog - Old & Middle English
did some wierd semantic narrowings and widdenings, particularly with animal
terms. BTW, the German for 'war dog' would be 'krieghund', which would be
a pretty cool name for a mech.

Second, why 'war duke'? I'm agreeing that 'geara' and 'guerre' are
cognates, but I have to look outside French for a cognate for 'doga'.
Modern 'duke' derives from the Latin 'dux', and has reflexes in all the
Romance languages as well as English; French 'duc', Spanish 'duque',
Italian 'duce' and Venetian 'doge'.

It is this Venetian reflex of 'dux' that the argument relies on. This
leads to two questions. First, what is Venetian? Looking at the Summer
Institute of Languages Ethnologue
(http://www.sil.org/ethnologue/countries/Ital.html) we get:

VENETIAN [VEC] 2,109,502 in Italy (1976); 100,000 in Croatia and Slovenia
(1994 Tapani Salminen). Venetia, northern Italy. Indo-European, Italic,
Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: ISTRIAN, TRETINE, VENETIAN
Very different from Standard Italian. Vigorous language use. Speakers may
all be bilingual in Standard Italian. Bible portions 1859. Survey needed.

The second question it raises is what is the Venetian word for 'duke'?
NFI, I'm afraid.

All of this is threatened once we turn to the Jagd Doga. Jagd is very much
a German word, meaning to chase, hunt, pursue, etc. Aha! you say, got 'im
now!. But I do have a way of accounting for this - Euromash.

Euromash is a European creole, It doesn't actually exist, there isn't
actually a name for it, but it is considered to be a real 'threat' by
language purist across Europe. Euromash can be used to explain the Geara
Doga ('war duke', ultimately from 'dux bellorum') and the Jagd Doga ('duke
of the hunt?').

What about the other Neo-Zeon MS/MA? Sazabi is so Japanese in phonology
that it doesn't fall within a Euromash context, and Alpha Aziel, I think,
has more Biblical origins.

So, there you are. Whay have I done this? GOD knows, just had an urge...


Gundam Mailing List Archives are available at http://gundam.aeug.org/

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.0b3 on Fri Aug 25 2000 - 11:17:03 JST