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-   -   Foreign words with a twist (https://www.mersenneforum.org/showthread.php?t=26395)

Nick 2021-01-12 16:18

Foreign words with a twist
 
This is a thread about words taken from one language and used with a related but distinct meaning in another language.

A typical way in which this occurs is that common nouns in local languages become proper nouns in other languages.
For example:
[LIST][*]Bantu was the Bantu people's word for "people";[*]Chechen is the Chechen word for "people";[*]Nile was (disputedly) the local word for "river".[/LIST]You can imagine an outsider arriving, asking "what's that?" and being told "it's the river" (using the local word),
then thinking "apparently they call it the Nile".

xilman 2021-01-12 18:57

"Deutsch" or "Dutch" originally meant "people".

Avon (as in Stratford-on Avon) is Celtic for "river". There are quite a few "River Avon"s in the UK.

The best example in my experience is a village called Brill in Buckinghamshire, a couple of km from where I used to live. It is located at the top of a prominent hill and is often called Brill-on-the-hill. Brill itself was registered in the Domesday book as Brunhelle. The -helle part is obviously the Ænglisc [I]hyll[/I], modern English [I]hill[/I]. The first part is from the Brythonic Celtic [I]breg[/I], also meaning [I]hill[/I] (c.f. Lallans [I]brae[/I] for [I]hillside[/I] or [I]brow of a hill[/I]).

So, a place called Hill-hill-on-the-hill.

Nick 2021-01-31 10:30

Be there or be ... plaza?
 
The English word "square" has a chequered history.
Even in geometry, its definition is not standardized
(are the interior points part of the square, like a disc, or just the outline, like a circle?)

Figuratively, it was once a positive word, as in a "square meal" (wholesome) or "fair and square",
but later it acquired a negative connotation, as in "be there or be square" (not cool).
Perhaps to escape this, shopping squares and suchlike now prefer the Spanish word "plaza".
Thus, in Spanish, it means a public town square but, in English, it is more usually a private one
to which the public are invited to spend their money.

rudy235 2021-01-31 11:28

ONCE
 
In English once is only one time.

In Spanish "once" is eleven times more than "[I]once[/I]".

pinhodecarlos 2021-01-31 11:43

Let’s go further. If you read “Pay day” very fast is the same as “I farted”/“peidei” in Portuguese.

Uncwilly 2021-01-31 15:33

[QUOTE=pinhodecarlos;570561]Let’s go further. If you read “Pay day” very fast is the same as “I farted”/“peidei” in Portuguese.[/QUOTE] I saw a cautionary road sign a while back in Norway that said (to the best of my recollection) "Pass Farten" or "Passe Farten". I was told by a local that it means "Watch the Speed". I did not get a picture of it at the time. I have been unable to find a picture of that specific sign. Those who have done some running training might know about "Fertlek" training. That is Swedish for "Speed Play".

Dr Sardonicus 2021-02-01 02:38

[QUOTE=Nick;570559]The English word "square" has a chequered history.
Even in geometry, its definition is not standardized
(are the interior points part of the square, like a disc, or just the outline, like a circle?)

Figuratively, it was once a positive word, as in a "square meal" (wholesome) or "fair and square",
but later it acquired a negative connotation, as in "be there or be square" (not cool).
Perhaps to escape this, shopping squares and suchlike now prefer the Spanish word "plaza".
Thus, in Spanish, it means a public town square but, in English, it is more usually a private one
to which the public are invited to spend their money.[/QUOTE]In the good ol' USA, the expression "the public square" is still in current use. In Chicago, Washington Square Park used to be an open-air forum which acquired the nickname "Bughouse Square." The Bughouse Square Debates are still an annual event.

"Square" still has a number of positive connotations and meanings:

In addition to "square meal" (a full or satisfying meal) and "fair and square" (of unquestionable legitimacy) there is

"square deal" meaning an honest or fair deal or trade (President Theodore Roosevelt called his domestic program "the Square Deal")

"square(s) with," to agree or be consistent with;

"square (it or things) with someone" means possibly to make amends with them, and/or to obtain their consent or permission;

"squarely" (directly, forthrightly);

"On the square" is not common these days, but it and "on the level" and "level with" are from Freemasonry, the reference to things used in masonry; they mean fair and honest dealing.

"We're square" means neither owes the other money; it can also mean some other matter is now mutually agreed to be settled.

"Squared away" means arranged, in order, or taken care of.

A couple of long running negative "square" terms:

A "square peg in a round hole" is an idiom for a nonconformist or someone who is out of place. (Ironically, square pegs [i]are[/i] often driven into round holes.)

"Square the/that circle" is used to mean something difficult or impossible, and "circle-squarer" to mean someone who attempts - and often claims to have achieved - something impossible.

LaurV 2021-02-01 10:08

I always dream to [URL="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gztHJ5avro"]square marden[/URL]...

Bolero 2021-02-01 16:37

[QUOTE=Nick;569065]
You can imagine an outsider arriving, asking "what's that?" and being told "it's the river" (using the local word),
then thinking "apparently they call it the Nile".[/QUOTE]
Same with [URL="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sahara"]Sahara[/URL], which basically means "desert" in Arabic.

xilman 2021-02-01 17:04

Somewhat related, but only somewhat because the terms are not in common use, we have semi-adopted a couple of farm cats at our place in La Palma.

One has been called "Cake" and the other "Torte". The reason is left as an exercise for the reader.

LaurV 2021-02-02 09:45

[QUOTE=xilman;570667]
One has been called "Cake" and the other "Torte". The reason is left as an exercise for the reader.[/QUOTE]
One only speaks English, the other one only speaks Spanish.
What's my prize? :razz:

Edit: if the one which speaks Spanish also likes Cola, will you call it "Torticollis"?

xilman 2021-02-02 10:43

[QUOTE=LaurV;570711]One only speaks English, the other one only speaks Spanish.
What's my prize? :razz:

Edit: if the one which speaks Spanish also likes Cola, will you call it "Torticollis"?[/QUOTE]Nope.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-02-02 13:18

[QUOTE=xilman;570667]Somewhat related, but only somewhat because the terms are not in common use, we have semi-adopted a couple of farm cats at our place in La Palma.

One has been called "Cake" and the other "Torte". The reason is left as an exercise for the reader.[/QUOTE]Because those are their names. :rolleyes:

xilman 2021-02-02 13:55

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;570721]Because those are their names. :rolleyes:[/QUOTE]True by definition. There is a more interesting reason.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-02-02 14:55

[QUOTE=xilman;570727][QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;570721]Because those are their names. :rolleyes:[/QUOTE]True by definition. There is a more interesting reason.[/QUOTE]If you mean, why they were originally [i]given[/i] the names "cake" and "torte," I have no idea what the story is. Perhaps there is an amusing or interesting anecdote. But if you would rather make a guessing game of it than tell the story, oh, well...

Once upon a time, long long ago, a friend of the family had a cat she named Bubbles, after it tried to walk on top of her bubble bath.

A bit less long ago, my sister had neighbors who had named their cat Adolf. Adolf had a mostly white face, with a rectangular black patch that looked [i]just[/i] like a "toothbrush mustache." The name stuck, even after Adolf had a litter of kittens.

kruoli 2021-02-02 15:04

Solution: [SPOILER]"Torte" is the German word for "cake".[/SPOILER]

xilman 2021-02-02 16:29

[QUOTE=kruoli;570731]Solution[/QUOTE]Very close.

kruoli 2021-02-02 16:43

Then I guess it is about the "strict" meaning. [SPOILER]At least in our family, we use "Kuchen" as a broader term for "Torte", but strictly speaking, a Kuchen is never a Torte and vice versa. A Kuchen is a cake and a Torte is pie (I'm not sure about the English translation here).[/SPOILER]

ATH 2021-02-02 18:05

The word "slut" in danish and swedish means: end / ending / finish / exhausted

The word "pick" in swedish means: dick / cock (called "pik" in danish but pronounced the same)

The word "bag" in danish means: behind. Both in the sense of "behind something" but also as a nice slang word for ass like: bottom / behind

xilman 2021-02-02 18:11

[QUOTE=kruoli;570739]Then I guess it is about the "strict" meaning. [SPOILER]At least in our family, we use "Kuchen" as a broader term for "Torte", but strictly speaking, a Kuchen is never a Torte and vice versa. A Kuchen is a cake and a Torte is pie (I'm not sure about the English translation here).[/SPOILER][/QUOTE]He could well have been called Kuchen, but wasn't.

Is Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte a kind of pie? I didn't know that.

xilman 2021-02-02 18:16

[QUOTE=ATH;570747]The word "slut" in danish and swedish means: end / ending / finish / exhausted

The word "pick" in swedish means: dick / cock (called "pik" in danish but pronounced the same)

The word "bag" in danish means: behind. Both in the sense of "behind something" but also as a nice slang word for ass like: bottom / behind[/QUOTE]Right, if we are being salacious, I raise you the English terms C[SUB]4[/SUB]H[SUB]4[/SUB]AsH and 1- (2″-hydroxyl cyclohexyl)-3′-[aminopropyl]-4- [3′-aminopropyl]piperazine

Dr Sardonicus 2021-02-02 20:02

The only tortes I've had were cake. [i]Chocolate[/i] cake. The kind of thing that's so rich, you gain weight just by [i]looking[/i] at it, so you might as well eat it.

Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte. Huh. I've never had Kirsch or Kirschwasser, which is a kind of brandy distilled from a type of sour cherry. Hmm, rich chocolate cake infused with Kirsch. I've read that in the Schwarzwald there are tours which feature samples of the local products along the trail. I wonder how many tourists have to be carried out.

There was a puzzler on the radio ages ago which depended on the fact that "sachertorte" (an Austrian invention) is an anagram of "orchestrate."

pinhodecarlos 2021-02-02 20:45

Legal in Brazilian Portuguese means cool, nice.

Nick 2021-03-27 22:30

From a report by an American for the BBC on US president Biden's first press conference:

[I]"Biden's performance was ... akin to a cautious walk across a not-quite-frozen lake.[/I]
[I] Every step was careful and calculated, lest an unexpected crack led to a dark, icy fate."[/I]

What stands out here is that English appears to be missing a word.
In Dutch, we call it a "wak": a natural hole or weak spot in the ice.
It's such a basic concept that it's a big surprise to find no English equivalent!

a1call 2021-03-28 00:15

A single word seems to be missing even from languages associated with cold climates such as Russian and Norwegian. Corrections are welcome. However in English two words have a very similar meaning:
Thin-Ice
[url]https://www.wordhippo.com/what-is/another-word-for/thin_ice.html[/url]

Dr Sardonicus 2021-03-28 01:09

[QUOTE=a1call;574640]A single word seems to be missing even from languages associated with cold climates such as Russian and Norwegian. Corrections are welcome. However in English two words have a very similar meaning:
Thin-Ice
[url]https://www.wordhippo.com/what-is/another-word-for/thin_ice.html[/url][/QUOTE]Here in the good ol' USA, "on thin ice" means doing something decidedly risky or possibly foolhardy, such as the President giving a coherent answer to a question about the Senate filibuster rule. There are snappier ways to avoid a question than appearing to lose your train of thought and waving the question away, though. A common approach is to change the subject.

[quote]It wasn't exactly a bravura performance, but conservatives have set the bar so low for Biden's coherence, that as in the presidential debates, Biden was able to surpass most expectations.[/quote]"Set the bar so low for Biden's coherence" means that a lot of his detractors insist he has dementia (e.g. Alzheimer's).

Amusingly, here in the good ol' USA, one of the first basic questions that is asked of a (usually elderly) patient in order to determine whether they are "oriented" is, "Who is the President of the United States?" It might be amusing to ask some of his detractors that question, to see whether they answer correctly...

Batalov 2021-03-28 03:17

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;574645]Here in the good ol' USA, "on thin ice" means doing something decidedly risky or possibly foolhardy, such as ...[/QUOTE]
This just happened - [URL="https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2021/03/26/zvuki-mu-founder-alexander-lipnitsky-dies-at-age-68-a73375"]a person was skiing on thin ice and drowned[/URL]. He was 68 and fairly well known in narrow circles.

Uncwilly 2021-03-28 03:41

1 Attachment(s)
This is my favourite bilingual pun to demonstrate to friends that are bilingual. It works best out loud, not written, that is the key.

a1call 2021-03-28 04:06

[QUOTE]

A last example: a lexicon of sea ice terminology in Nunavik (Appendix A of the collective work Siku: Knowing Our Ice, 2010) includes no fewer than 93 different words. These include general appellations such as siku, but also terms as specialized as qautsaulittuq, ice that breaks after its strength has been tested with a harpoon; kiviniq, a depression in shore ice caused by the weight of the water that passed over and accumulated on its surface during the tide; and iniruvik, ice that cracked because of tide changes and that the cold weather refroze.
[/QUOTE]


[url]https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/inuktitut-words-for-snow-and-ice[/url]

LaurV 2021-03-28 08:08

In Thai there are many words which would have different (sometimes funny) meaning in English or Romanian. Like for example, the Thai word for "boy" or "man", as pronounced in northern region, would mean something like "owner of a small dick" in Romanian, a term which may be used to call very young boys (like toddlers). I guess they both have some Sanskrit, common origin. Contrary to popular beliefs, there are many "common" words in Thai and European languages, if you "listen for gist". And I do not talk about neologisms, or technical things that was almost always borrowed from English, German, French, or Spanish, but about very old words, with common origin, whose origin deviated a bit, but still can be "traced". Like for example, the word "hand", which in Romanian is "mână", from Latin "mana" (common in Italian, Spanish, etc), well, you would not be surprised to see that in Thai, there is the word "mân", which means "ten thousands". See any connection? (hint: fingers). In fact, they split the numbers in groups of 6 digits (not in threes, like Europeans/Americans, and this is not as uncommon as it would appear, for example Chinese may split them in groups of 4, having a name for what we call "ten thousands"), and therefore, what we call "tens, hundreds, thousands" they call "sip, roi, pan", but they won't start again with "tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands", but continue with "mân, saen, laan". Laan is a million. See any similarity between the "saen" (pronounced with an open a/e sound, "sen" like in "sand" or "senator"), which means "a hundred thousands", and the words "cent", "century"? (albeit in Latin, as in Romanian, that would have been pronounced with "tche" sound like in "check").

Anyhow, why I posted, I may have told this story around, when our daughter was like 3 years old, she was very funny, and fluffy like a doughnut, and curly like Shirley Temple, all smiling face, and running around like a minion, doing naughty things. Now you see her, now you don't. Any time we went shopping in supermarkets, we had to keep her in the trolley, otherwise she would get lost between the shelves, then either start crying for us from some far corner of the hall, or start making a mess somewhere.

Thais are very found of babies in general, they are very nice and patient people, who love small children. So, they always tolerate her, give her small presents, touch her curly, light colored hair (Thai babies have dark, straight hair), and ask us, with a hand on her head, or with a finger pointing at her, but with the face turned to us, and looking into our eyes: "How old ARE YOU?"

This was always sooo funny. Especially for my wife, even she was never sensitive when asked about her age. Thai people mean the baby, nobody was interested in the age of some farang lady, or some mid-aged ugly farang guy.

But in Thai, "a-yu" means "age". Like in "what's you age?" (textually, "age, how much?", "a-yu tao rai?", where "tao rai" means "how much", everybody who bargained for prices in Thai bazaars knows that :smile:). This "a-yu" is pronounced exactly the same like English "are you". So, asking a Thai how old is his baby, you would just say the baby or its name, then "a-yu tao rai". Baby, age, how much? This "how old are you" is a very confusing sentence, even for Thais that can handle English very well. They always associate the "a-yu" with the "are you" in "how old are you?", and the rest "how old" means "tao rai", i.e. "how much". Unless he/she experienced the similar situation in the past and learned from it, even the most proficient English speaker will do this mistake, asking "how old are you", when he/she refers to a third party person (i.e. instead of "how old is he/she/baby/etc").

About touching the head, Thai (in general Buddhist) people won't touch other people's children heads, unless mandatory, like kicking out a spider or something, haha, or unless they are family, close relatives, teachers, or monks, because in their religion, the head is considered as being the most [URL="http://www.responsiblethailand.co.uk/green-tourism/7-dos-and-don-ts-of-thai-cultural-etiquette/"]sacred part of the body[/URL] (as opposite to the feet, which are the dirtiest, because they walk in the dirt and dust). So, if you (Thai or farang) just go around touching people's heads, you may get beaten by some angry mob sooner or later. Well, I guess the way I said it, that could happen anywhere in the world, haha, but you got the idea.

On the other hand, they are kind persons, and they love children, they are eager to touch them, especially if the children are curly and blond (both rare for their babies), and they are curious too, like the [URL="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prelude_to_Foundation"]Mycogenians[/URL] in Asimov's books (those were people without hair, who were curious and eager to touch other people's hair, and get sexual arousal from it, even if their social norm considered that a perversion, and it was punished as a crime). Thais also know that we, farangs, and in general non-Buddhist people, don't mind, we don't get angry if somebody touches our children's head, with compassion, or love, etc., and asking somebody about his/her baby's age is always appreciated, a nice starting point of a conversation, and a door opener, therefore they will ALWAYS take [U]plenty of advantage[/U] of the opportunity :lol:.

If you are farang in Thai and carry a cute toddler with you in a supermarket, there will be at least a Thai person or couple who will touch/pat the child's head, look directly into your eyes, smile, and ask "[U]How old a-yu?[/U]".

Always!

xilman 2021-03-28 13:01

[QUOTE=Uncwilly;574654]This is my favourite bilingual pun to demonstrate to friends that are bilingual. It works best out loud, not written, that is the key.[/QUOTE]Nice one.

Do you know the motto of the French Navy?

A l'eau, c'est le heure.

xilman 2021-03-28 13:20

[QUOTE=LaurV;574659]and the words "cent", "century"? (albeit in Latin, as in Romanian, that would have been pronounced with "tche" sound like in "check").[/QUOTE]

It is now very well established that Classical Latin always pronounced the letter C hard, as in the English K and the Greek Κ. The conclusive evidence is that where a Latin word is found in contemporary Greek the latter invariably uses a kappa and not a sigma. It is most convincingly seen in bilingual place names and personal names such as Cerberus / Κερβερος and Berenice / Βερενίκη and, for that matter, 𓊸𓂋𓈖𓇌𓇯𓅬𓆇𓏏 in Egyptian the final pronounced consonant is a /k/ The final 𓏏 was a silent feminine marker in classical times. In much earlier Egyptian it was pronounced /t/ --- c.f. Arabic "bint" and the character remained /t/ in words where it was pronounced.

The "s" and "tche" pronunciations came much later with Vulgar Latin and its descendants such as Romanian and French.

LaurV 2021-03-28 18:00

Well, opinions still vary. We had this argument once. Latins pronounced c as k every time, except when followed by e or i, which were pronounced "tche", and "tchi", like in "check" and "chimp". That is why the alphabet is "aa, be, tche, de" and not "aa, be, ke, de" (and you have "abecedary" or "abecedarium" in English, and not "abekedary", etc). When they wanted to avoid pronouncing it so, they inserted and "a" in between. Words like "kaizer" were written "caesar", and not "cesar", and kerberos is a borrowed word from greek, therefore irrelevant (yes, they were pronouncing it "tcherberos"), as well as place names (see how most of the world used to call for decades "Pekin", "Beijing"). The "ae" group was always pronounced like open "e" (like in english "bet"), there are many plurals of feminine words (which ended in "a") formed like that, for example "silva/silvae" (forest, forests), pronounced "silve".

Batalov 2021-03-29 05:43

a bilingual illiterate - origin
 
[QUOTE=Uncwilly;574654]This is my favourite bilingual pun to demonstrate to friends that are bilingual. It works best out loud, not written, that is the key.[/QUOTE]
Here is an interesting bilingual joke - Now, everyone who watched MTV as a child probably thought that it was Pet Shop Boys' but I suspect that the real author is Steven Wright.
[QUOTE]She was a bilingual illiterate… she couldn’t read in two different languages.

Steven Wright[/QUOTE]
[QUOTE=][URL="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wDe60CbIagg"]Chris Lowe [/URL]: Where are you from?

Neil Tennant : Yes where are you from?

Priest: I'm glad you asked me twice. You see I'm a bilingual. A bilingual illiterate - I can't read in two languages.
(In fact, in [URL="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vReiAo5t4k"]the movie from which the MTV clip is chopped[/URL] , Joss Ackland says 3+ more Steven's oneliners in a row!) (!!)[/QUOTE]

To everyone doesn't know Steven - while you might have not seen him in your life, you most likely [I]heard [/I]him: his is the voice on the radio in both Reservoir Dogs and in Pulp Fiction.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-03-29 15:43

Molly Ivins said of George W. Bush that his efforts at speaking Spanish showed he was not bilingual, but bi-ignorant. The descriptor had previously been used by others, e.g.Jim Hightower, in reference to other Texas politicians trying to learn Spanish.

xilman 2021-09-14 19:13

[QUOTE=Uncwilly;574654]This is my favourite bilingual pun to demonstrate to friends that are bilingual. It works best out loud, not written, that is the key.[/QUOTE]Frappe frappe.
Qui est là?
Loste.
Loste qui?
Oui.

xilman 2021-09-14 19:22

[QUOTE=LaurV;574689]Well, opinions still vary. We had this argument once. Latins pronounced c as k every time, except when followed by e or i, which were pronounced "tche", and "tchi", like in "check" and "chimp". That is why the alphabet is "aa, be, tche, de" and not "aa, be, ke, de" (and you have "abecedary" or "abecedarium" in English, and not "abekedary", etc). When they wanted to avoid pronouncing it so, they inserted and "a" in between. Words like "kaizer" were written "caesar", and not "cesar", and kerberos is a borrowed word from greek, therefore irrelevant (yes, they were pronouncing it "tcherberos"), as well as place names (see how most of the world used to call for decades "Pekin", "Beijing"). The "ae" group was always pronounced like open "e" (like in english "bet"), there are many plurals of feminine words (which ended in "a") formed like that, for example "silva/silvae" (forest, forests), pronounced "silve".[/QUOTE]You describe a later form of Latin, Vulgar Latin, from perhaps the 4th century onwards.

Essentially all scholars now believe that Classical Latin was pronounced in the time of Brutus and Julius Caesar as I have describe it.

See [url]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latin_phonology_and_orthography[/url] for a comprehensive treatment. In particular

"
⟨c⟩, ⟨k⟩ [k] Always hard as k in sky, never soft as in cellar, cello, or social. ⟨k⟩ is a letter coming from Greek, but seldom used and generally replaced by c.
⟨ch⟩ [kʰ] As ch in chemistry, and aspirated; never as in challenge or change (mostly used in Greek loanwords). Transliteration of Greek ⟨χ⟩.
"

Compare English: "red" was pronounced the same as "read" not so long ago, and "enough" had an aspirated-g as still exists in modern Dutch "Van Gogh". There is absolutely no doubt that "Cerberos" was pronounced very similar to English Kerberos and Greek Κέρβερος. Many other bi-lingual examples exist, some from Latin paired with another ancient language and others from Latin and a modern language. I have already provided Caesar and Kaiser.

Pronounciation changes.

Uncwilly 2021-09-14 20:31

[QUOTE=xilman;587867]Pronounciation changes.[/QUOTE]Thus "The great bowel shift".

xilman 2021-09-14 20:54

[QUOTE=Uncwilly;574654]This is my favourite bilingual pun to demonstrate to friends that are bilingual. It works best out loud, not written, that is the key.[/QUOTE] A cat of our acquaintance is called "Cake" by us. We have since learned that the people across the road with whom he spends most of his time call him Garfield. Cake came by for a chat and a bite to eat about an hour ago and then left.

His name is a trilingual pun. That should be a big enough clue if you know that we presently live in La Palma, a Canarian island which is part of Spain.

xilman 2021-09-14 20:55

[QUOTE=Uncwilly;587874]Thus "The great bowel shift".[/QUOTE]:poop: happens.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-09-15 13:29

I have long been familiar with the term "quack" meaning a medical charlatan. I had never bothered looking up the etymology.

I have now done so. And what to my wondering eyes should appear, but the Dutch word [i]quacksalver[/i] (modern spelling [i]kwakzalver[/i]), a Dutch word for a seller of nostrums - pills, potions, ointments etc often claimed to have secret or exotic ingredients, sure to cure what ails you. Thus arose the related US term, "snake oil salesman."

In recent times, "quack" has usually meant somebody without actual medical knowledge or training, who sells pretended treatments or "cures" for ailments.

We are currently witnessing a twist on the notion of medical quackery: Trained physicians, with current medical licenses, are spouting falsehoods about nonexistent "dangers" of preventative vaccines, and in their place offering nostrums they claim with no evidence prevent or cure COVID-19 - vitamin and mineral supplements, antibiotics, hydroxychloroquine, and ivermectin. Pay me some dough, I'll write you a scrip. In other words, doctors are turning their backs on their medical training, and on medical ethics, and are practicing quackery.


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