LINGUIST List 11.2164

Fri Oct 6 2000

Qs: List of Most Common Words, Animal Names

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  1. Prof. Yaacov Choueka, most common words
  2. Robin Allott, Animal names

Message 1: most common words

Date: Tue, 03 Oct 2000 22:48:09 +0200
From: Prof. Yaacov Choueka <>
Subject: most common words

I would be grateful to anyone who can point me to the list of the 100
most common words of any of the European languages (with latin alphabet)

such as English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Norwegian, Finnish,
Swedish, Danish, Polish, Portuguese, etc. (I am interested in all of
Many thanks.

Prof. Yaacov Choueka
Head, Department of Information Retrieval and Computational Linguistics
Bar Ilan University, Ramat Gan, Israel, 59100
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Message 2: Animal names

Date: Fri, 6 Oct 2000 09:57:37 +0100
From: Robin Allott <>
Subject: Animal names

As part of a study of sound symbolism I am collecting the names in a
wide range of languages of a selection of animals, birds and one insect.

The list is:
Animals: cat cow dog donkey goat horse pig sheep wolf 
Birds: chicken cock crow duck goose hen lark owl partridge pigeon rook
sparrow turkey woodpecker
Insect: wasp
Not all the animals or birds are found in different language

To illustrate the start of the collection, there are the following

CAT: k'at'a (Georgian) macska (Hungarian) mace (Albanian) gorbe
(Persian) kissa (Finnish) kat (Dutch) kuching (Malay)gata (Greek) kot
(Russian) kutta (Arabic) chat (French) neko (Japanese) amouch (Berber)
kedi (Turkish) kakis(Latvian) mau (Egyptian) mao1 (Chinese) gatu

DOG: dzaghli (Georgian) kutya (Hungarian) qen (Albanian) sag (Persian)
koira (Finnish) hond (Dutch) anjing (Malay) kuon (Greek)pyos (Russian)
kalb (Arabic) chien (French) inu (Japanese) aydi (Berber) kopek
(Turkish) suns (Latvian) uher (Egyptian) chu'an3 (Chinese) zakur

DUCK: ikhwi (Georgian) kacsa (Hungarian) rose (Albanian) urdak (Persian)
ankka (Finnish) eend (Dutch) itek (Malay) papia (Greek) utka (Russian)
batta (Arabic) canard (French) kamo (Japanese) ordek (Turkish) aq
(Egyptian) ya2 (Chinese) ahate (Basque)

Contributions, particularly for less familiar languages, for CAT DOG or
DUCK or for other animals and birds in the list welcome and also
corrections - though there are obvious difficulties with email in
representing different orthographies.

The motor theory of language origin proposes that words have a natural,
non-arbitrary origin [ see material at or
more specifically ]
Bloomfield said that the differences between words e.g. for 'horse'
proved that word-forms are arbitrary. What in fact seems the case is
that there is a much more extensive onomatopoeia than he or Hockett were
prepared to recognise.

Robin Allott email:
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