Reading makes a full man,

conference a ready man,

writing an exact man.

·王稚登 《立冬》: 秋风吹尽旧庭柯, 黄叶丹枫客里过。 一点禅灯半轮月, 今宵寒较昨宵多。


发表时间:2021/2/24 22:20:18  来源  作者:Thomas Tsoi  浏览次数:1497  
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Years ago I read a post on the Internet, saying that -ese is a derogatory ending used only on those countries that the western world thought to be inferior, so we have adjectives like Chinese, Vietnamese and Burmese. After all, many of the Asian countries do form their adjectives in -ese. But I had doubts, don't the westerners just love Japanese stuff? And why Korean, Indian, Malaysian and Indonesian then? So I decided to look for the answer myself.
多年前我在网上看到一个帖子,说"-ese"是一个贬义词尾,只用于那些西方世界认为低劣的国家,所以我们有Chinese、Vietnamese和Burmese这样的形容词。毕竟,许多亚洲国家的形容词确实是用-ese构成的。但我有疑虑,西方人不就是喜欢日本的东西吗?那为什么有Korean、Indian、Malaysian和 Indonesian呢?所以我决定自己去寻找答案。
Let us now turn to the controversial suffix -ese. Countries using -ese are scattered everywhere in Asia, Africa, South America, and we also have Portugal in Europe! But my attention turns to Italian when I give this suffix some more thought.
现在让我们来看看有争议的后缀-ese。使用-ese的国家散布在亚洲、非洲、南美洲的各个地方,我们在欧洲也有葡萄牙(Portugese)! 但是,当我对这个后缀进行深入思考时,我的注意力转向了意大利语。
In Italian, -ese is a much more common suffix of nationality than in English. Words that use -ese in Italian but not in English include danese (Danish), finlandese (Finnish), francese (French), inglese (English) and islandese (Icelandic). In fact, -ese (from Latin -ēnsis) is the next most common suffix after the Latin triplet -ian/-ean/-an.
在意大利语中,-ese是一个比英语中更常见的国籍后缀。在意大利语中使用-ese但在英语中不使用的词包括danese (Danish)、finlandese (Finnish),、francese (French)、inglese (English)和islandese (Icelandic)。事实上,-ese(来自拉丁语-ēnsis)是仅次于拉丁语三联体-ian/-ean/-an的最常见后缀。
It turns out that words ending in -ese in English actually come from Italian. Recalling that Marco Polo and other Italian traders were the first Europeans to reach the Far East, it is therefore no surprise that many Asian countries use -ese. In addition, the countries using -ese in South America are all very close to where Christopher Columbus, himself an Italian, first landed on the continent. But of course, why some countries in Africa and the Americas use the Italian suffix, while others use French or Spanish suffixes is a result of their long and complicated colonial histories.


I think we should be reasonably convinced that the choice of suffix is not entirely a matter of chance or taste. Instead, there are historical and linguistic factors which determine why one suffix is used for a certain nationality but another suffix for a second one.
But before English had gone global and applied its suffix to other nationalities, it was influenced by Latin and French. The default suffix of nationality used in the language was replaced by the Latinate -ian/-ean/-an, so more recently coined nationalities made use of them instead. Later, the contact between Italy and the Far East, together with the European colonization of Africa and South America, brought in some nationalities ending in -ese.




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