Linguaphile – a lover of languages and words
(Logophile, however, is strictly a word lover)
As a self-described linguaphile, I enjoy finding out new and interesting words and their origins, a propensity which carries over to the Portuguese language. While once I had the idea to write an e-book on the origins of words in Brazilian Portuguese, I’ve since discovered Brazilian sites that have encouraged me away from such an endeavor. The principal three are listed below for you.
Describes itself for “Articles and consultations on the origins of words, for those who are in a good mood and have a thirst for knowledge.” As for who they are, I can’t seem to locate that information but searching around the site, it can be seen that they have been active since December of 2004.
Describes itself simply as a “Brazilian dictionary for word origins”, and is a little more of a straight forward, search-and-read, type site.
A slightly more robust search site. In its own words, it’s a “repository of meanings, concepts and definitions about the most varied of subjects. We explain what it is and what it means.” (Interestingly, their site’s description differentiates between ”o que significa” and “o que quer dizer cada coisa”, which I take to mean the literal meaning as well as its popular meaning).
During the writing of this article, I also came across an interesting concept called “popular etymology”, that refers to folk origins given to words and phrases by regular people, where they often mix and confuse things that aren’t actually related. I’ll list a few words below.
Kit-net (correctly written as kitchenette, or quitinete)
A studio apartment in Brazil, as it’s known and sometimes written. It doesn’t have anything to do with being a starter’s kit to getting online (though, between me and you, I’ve never heard anyone thinking it was actually such a kit).
X-búrguer (also written X-burger)
Meaning a cheeseburger, where ‘cheese’ is substituted with the letter ‘X’ from the Portuguese alphabet (making the sound ‘sheez’).
Meaning (video/tape) cassete. The letter ‘K’, or “kaw”, joins the number ‘sete’, making kaw-sete, or cassete.
Bonus: A map of Brazilian states by their literal names.
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