Philip Newton (pne) wrote,
Philip Newton

Importing function words / what "warmer" means

While Amy typically keeps the languages very separate, she does occasionally import some German prepositions or other function words into German—perhaps because function words are among the most necessary to make sense of the sentence?

Some recent examples: "my tights go bis to my vest" (all the way up to it, right up to it), and "That's not a sand-pit, sondern something else" (but rather).

And interestingly Amy makes a fairly strong three-way distinction between "cold, warm, hot", which is perhaps not that surprising in itself; but she carries it to its logical conclusion by making "get warm" mean exactly that: approach the state "warm", from whichever direction.

For example, this morning while washing her hands, she said that the water was "hot" and asked me to "make it warmer". Now, for most people, "make it warmer" means "increase the temperature", but for her, it means "make it more like the temperature stereotypically referred to as warm"; in this case: "reduce the temperature"!

Or she might let some tea stand for a while before drinking it so that it can "get warm" first. (That is, so that it can cool down.)

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