Philip Newton (pne) wrote,
Philip Newton

Foreign morphology

Today I got a postcard with Ferapontov Monastery on it.

I looked it up on Wikipedia and had a look at the Interwiki links, and saw that the Romance languages (Spanish, French, and Italian) called it “Monastery of Ferapontov”.

But AFAIK, the -ov ending in the original is simply a bit of derivational morphology that turns a noun into a possessive adjective, so it’s “Ferapont’s Monastery” or “The Monastery of Ferapont”.

On the other hand, not everyone can be expected to know that and to undo the possessive derivation when applying their own language’s :-)

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