If a Tree Fell And There Was No One…


By Jirair Tutunjian, Toronto, 21 February 2015

The English language, which has a vocabulary stockpile of more than one million, is the richest language by far. However, there are still countless life and human experiences for which other languages have words for but English language doesn’t.

Sobemesa is the word Spaniards use to describe after-lunch conversation around the table.

Meraki (Greek) means the essence of yourself you put into your work.

Verschlimmbessern (German, naturally) means to make something worse when trying to improve it.

Abbrocco (Italian) is drowsiness one feels after a big meal.

Everyone knows the German schadenfreude which means the pleasure one derives from the failure of others.

Incredible as it may sound, some deniers of the Armenian Genocide say there was no genocide of Armenians because there was no such word in 1915. It may have been a massacre or some blood-letting for which most languages had a word for in 1915. If there was no word, then it didn’t happen, incredibly assert Turkish dissemblers. If we were to follow the mendacious Turkish  logic no human being, other than an Italian, can feel abbrocco after a big meal; no non-Greek puts his/her essence into his/her work; and no one other than a German feels pleased at the failure of others.

One wonders whether Turkish, which has borrowed so many words from Armenian, has a word for “amot” (shame in Armenian).

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