Svengelska bloggen

Svengelska bloggen

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I aim to use this blog to keep up my English and maybe give others some insights in Swedish language. It's not a diary - well not quite...

Öl

Teknik/TechnologyPosted by Gunvor 2012-04-17 00:28:51

Öl is ’beer’, but also a communal party often combining work with food and entertainment, as in ystöl ‘cheesemaking party’ (where the guests brought milk from their own cows), taklagsöl ‘party when the framework of the roof of a new house is ready’, slåtteröl ‘haymaking party’, flyttöl ‘house-moving party’, or gravöl ‘funeral feast’.

Swedish öl and English ale ‘pale beer’ come from a common Germanic word *aluth with the same meaning, origin obscure but could be an Indoeuropean root *alus, probably meaning' bitter', from which comes Latin alumen 'alum', Swedish alun.

There is one English word where ale means party: bridal is now often used as an adjective in e.g. bridal gown, but originally it is 'bride-ale', ‘wedding party’.

The origin of English beer, German Bier etc. is also disputed. Probably it is a loan from Vulgar Latin biber, drink’ from Latin bibere ‘to drink’, but it could instead be a Germanic word related to barley (bjugg in Swedish). Bir in Swedish vernacular is a loan from German, and so is Italian birra.