10 episodes

Radio Omniglot is a podcast about language and linguistics, brought to you by Simon Ager, the man behind Omniglot.com, the online encyclopedia of writing systems and languages.

Radio Omniglot Simon Ager

    • Education
    • 4.7 • 3 Ratings

Radio Omniglot is a podcast about language and linguistics, brought to you by Simon Ager, the man behind Omniglot.com, the online encyclopedia of writing systems and languages.

    Omniglot News (25/02/24)

    Omniglot News (25/02/24)

    Here’s the latest news from the world of Omniglot.

    There are new language pages about:



    * Kwaio, a Southeast Solomonic language spoken on Malaita Island in Malaita Province of the Solomon Islands.

    * Gela (Nggela), a Southeast Solomonic language spoken in the Nggela (Florida) Islands in the Central Province of the Solomon Islands.

    * Arosi, a Southeast Solomonic language spoken on Makira Island in Makira-Ulawa Province in the east of the Solomon Islands.

    * Touo, a Central Solomonic language spoken in the south of Rendova Island in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands.



    New constructed script: Thieṛian Hieroglyphs, which were invented by Kitsune Sobo as a script for the constructed language Thieṛian.



    New adapted script: Tengwar Persian, a way to write the Persian (Farsi) language with Tolkien’s Tengwar script devised by Daniyal Motamedi (دانیال معتمدی نیا).



    New phrases page: Duala (Duálá), a Bantu language spoken in Cameroon in West Africa.

    New numbers pages:



    * Duala (Duálá), a Bantu language spoken in Cameroon in West Africa.

    * Kikuyu (Gĩkũyũ), a Bantu language spoken mainly in the Central Province of Kenya.

    * Gela (Nggela), a Southeast Solomonic language spoken in the Nggela (Florida) Islands in the Central Province of the Solomon Islands.

    * Arosi, a Southeast Solomonic language spoken on Makira Island in Makira-Ulawa Province in the east of the Solomon Islands.



    There’s a new Omniglot blog post entitled Various Verses about words for the world beyond your screen, and there’s the usual Language Quiz. See if you can guess what language this is:

    Here’s a clue: this language is spoken in southern China but isn’t related to Chinese.

    The mystery language in last week’s language quiz was Deg Xinag (Degexit’an), a Northern Athabaskan language spoken along the lower Yukon River in Alaska in the USA



    In this week’s Adventure in Etymology, we look into the origins of the word Guide.



    On the Celtiadur blog there’s a new post entitled A Bit of Bitterness about words for bitter, sour and related things, and I made improvements to the post about words for Honey, Sweet and related things.

    I also made improvements to the Duala language page.

    For more Omniglot News, see:

    https://www.omniglot.com/news/

    https://twitter.com/Omniglossia

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/omniglot/

    https://www.

    • 2 min
    Adventures in Etymology - Guide

    Adventures in Etymology - Guide

    In this Adventure in Etymology we’re looking into the origins of the word guide.



    Guide [ɡaɪd] means:



    * Someone who guides, especially someone hired to show people around a place or an institution and offer information and explanation, or to lead them through dangerous terrain.

    * A document or book that offers information or instruction; guidebook.



    It comes from Middle English gīde / gidde / guide (guide, pilot, helmsman), from Old French guide (guide) from Old Occitan guida (guide), from guidar (to guide, lead), from Frankish *wītan (to show the way, lead), from Proto-Germanic *wītaną (to see, know, go, depart), from PIE *weyd- (to see, know) [source].

    Words from the same roots include druid, history, idea, vision, wise and wit in English, gwybod (to know) in Welsh, fios (knowledge, information) in Irish and veta (to know) in Swedish [source].

    The English word guide has been borrowed into various other languages, including Japanese: ガイド (gaido – guide, tour guide, conductor, guiding, leading, guidebook) [source], and Korean: 가이드 (gaideu – tour guide, guidebook, user’s manual) [source].

    By the way, there’s an episode of the Celtic Pathways podcast about the word druid, and there’s a post on my Celtiadur blog about words related to knowledge in Celtic languages.

    You can also listen to this podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, TuneIn, Podchaser,

    • 1 min
    Omniglot News (18/02/24)

    Omniglot News (18/02/24)

    Here’s the latest news from the world of Omniglot.

    There are new language pages about:



    * Mono-Alu, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken on Mono, Alu and Fauro islands in the Solomon Islands.

    * Marovo, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken mainly in Marovo Lagoon in the Solomon Islands.

    * Nduke, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken on Kolombangara Island in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands.

    * Babatana, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken on Choiseul Island in the north of the Solomon Islands.



    New numbers pages:



    * Nduke, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken on Kolombangara Island in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands.

    * Babatana, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken on Choiseul Island in the north of the Solomon Islands.

    * Hoava, a Northwest Solomonic language spoken mainly in New Georgia Island in the Solomon Islands.

    * Nishi (Nyishi / न्यिसि), a Western Tani language spoken in Arunachal Pradesh and Assam in the northeast of India.



    There’s a new Omniglot blog post entitled Fictile Dairymaids about the shared origins of the words fictile, dairy and lady, and there’s the usual Language Quiz. See if you can guess what language this is:

    Here’s a clue: this language is spoken along the Yukon River in Alaska in the USA.

    The mystery language in last week’s language quiz was Santa / Dongxiang (Sarta kelen / لھجکءاءل), a Mongolic language spoken in Gansu and Xinjiang provinces in the northwest of China.



    In this week’s Celtic Pathways podcast, Needles and Scythes, we discover some Romance scythes in a heap of Celtic pins and needles.



    On the Celtiadur blog there are new posts entitled Pins & Needles and Muddy Mires, and I made improvements to the posts about words for Red and Blue / Black / Dark.



    I also made improvements to the Mundari Bani script page.

    In other news, my current streak on Duolingo reached 2,400 days this week, and I finished all the Scottish Gaelic lessons. I’m currently studying Japanese, Spanish and Irish, and sometimes dipping into other languages, particularly Dutch.

    For more Omniglot News, see:

    https://www.omniglot.com/news/

    https://twitter.com/Omniglossia

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/omniglot/

    https://www.facebook.com/Omniglot-100430558332117



    You can also listen to this podcast on: a href="https://podcas...

    • 2 min
    Celtic Pathways – Needles and Scythes

    Celtic Pathways – Needles and Scythes

    In this episode we discover Romance scythes in a stack of Celtic pins and needles.



    The Proto-Celtic word *delgos means pin or needle. It comes from Proto-Indo-European *dʰelg- (sting) [source].

    Related words in the modern Celtic languages include:



    * dealg [ˈdʲal̪ˠəɡ] = thorn, prickle, spine, spike, pin, peg or brooch in Irish

    * dealg [dʲal̪ˠag] = pin, skewer or knitting needle in Scottish Gaelic

    * jialg = needle, prick, quill, thorn or pin in Manx

    * dala [ˈdala] = sting or bite in Welsh



    Words from the same Proto-Celtic roots, via Gaulish *dalgis (scythe) and Latin *daculum (scythe) , possibly include dall (mowing, billhook) in Catalan, dalle (scythe) in Spanish, and dalha (scythe) in Occitan (Languedoc) [source].

    The English word dagger, and related words in other languages, such as daga (dagger) in Spanish, and Degen (rapier, épée) in German, might come from the same Celtic roots [source].

    Words from the same PIE root include dálkur (spine of a fish, knife, dagger, newspaper column) in Icelandic, dilgus (prickly) in Lithuanian, falce (scythe, sickle) in Italian, and falcate (shaped like a sickle) and falcifer (sickle-bearing, holding a scythe) in English [source].

    More about words for Pins and Needles in Celtic languages.

    You can find more connections between Celtic languages on the Celtiadur blog. I also write about words, etymology and other language-related topics on the Omniglot Blog.

    Radio Omniglot podcasts are brought to you in association with Blubrry Podcast Hosting, a great place to host your podcasts. Get your first month free with the promo code omniglot.

    • 2 min
    Omniglot News (11/02/24)

    Omniglot News (11/02/24)

    Here’s the latest news from the world of Omniglot.

    There are new language pages about:



    * Iranun, a Danao language spoken mainly in the southwest of Mindanao island in the south of the Philippines.

    * Onhan (Inonhan​), a Western Bisayan language spoken mainly in the Province of Romblon in the Mimaropa region of the Philippines.

    * Southern Sorsogon, a Central Bisayan language spoken in the south of Sorsogon Province in the Bicol Region of the Philippines.



    New numbers pages:



    * Onhan (Inonhan​), a Western Bisayan language spoken mainly in the Province of Romblon in the Mimaropa region of the Philippines.

    * Shompen, a Nicobarese language spoken in Great Nicobar Island, part of the Indian union territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.



    New phrases page: Gallo (galo), a Romance language spoken in parts of Brittany and Normandy in the northwest of France.

    There’s a new Omniglot blog post entitled Mud Glorious Mud, which is about some mud-related words such as lutarious (of, pertaining to, or like, mud; living in mud), and there’s the usual Language Quiz. See if you can guess what language this is:

    Here’s a clue: this language is spoken in the northwest of China.

    The mystery language in last week’s language quiz was Murrinh-Patha, an Australian Aboriginal language spoken on the west coast of Australia’s Northern Territory.



    In this week’s Adventure in Etymology, we look into the marshy origins of the word Quagmire.



    On the Celtiadur blog there are new posts entitled Through and Through and Betwixt and Between, and I made improvements to the Green & Verdant and Blue / Green / Grey posts.



    For more Omniglot News, see:

    https://www.omniglot.com/news/

    https://twitter.com/Omniglossia

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/omniglot/

    https://www.facebook.com/Omniglot-100430558332117

    You can also listen to this podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, Stitcher, TuneIn, Podchaser, PlayerFM or podtail.

    If you would like to support this podcast, you can make a donation via a href="https://w...

    • 2 min
    Adventures in Etymology - Quagmire

    Adventures in Etymology - Quagmire

    In this Adventure in Etymology we’re looking into the origins of the word quagmire.



    A quagmire [ˈkwɒɡ.maɪər/ˈkwæɡ.maɪr] is:



    * A swampy, soggy area of ground.

    * A perilous, mixed up and troubled situation; a hopeless tangle.

    * To embroil (a person, etc.) in complexity or difficulty.



    The quag part is an obsolete English word meaning quagmire, marsh or bog, from Middle English quabbe (marsh, bog), from Old English cwabba (that which shakes or trembles, something soft and flabby) [source].

    The mire part comes from Middle English mire (marshy or swampy land), from Old Norse mýrr (moor, swamp, bog), from Proto-Germanic *miuzijō (bog, swamp, moor), from PIE *mews-yeh₂, from *mews- (moss) [source].

    The English word quaggy/quoggy (marshy, soft, flabby) is related to quag, and the Dutch words kwab (a weak, blubbery mass), kwebbelen (to chatter) come and kwebbelkous (chatterbox) from the same roots [source].

    Words from the same roots as mire include moss and mousse and moist in English, mos (moss, lichen) in Dutch, Moos (moss, bog, fen, marsh) in German, and mýri (marsh, swamp, bog) in Icelandic [source].

    You can also listen to this podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, TuneIn, Podchaser,

    • 1 min

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