Tuesday, May 3, 2016


Yesterday's post about the etymology of "walk" made me wonder about "talk." Seems reasonable to think this rhyming pair might have something in common historically.

Nope. Here's etymonline.com again:

c. 1200, talken, probably a diminutive or frequentative form related to Middle English tale "story," and ultimately from the same source as tale, with rare English formative -k (compare hark from hear, stalk from steal, smirk from smile) and replacing that word as a verb. 
Well, talk being related to tale makes a lot more sense to my modern ear than walk being related to fulling.

But stalk comes from steal! How cool is that? And smirk directly from smile.

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