þriðjudagur, nóvember 09, 2004

ransacking old words

My new favorite is the verb að rannsaka which means to research in modern Icelandic, but it comes from "to ransack".

How about that crazy að rannsaka business? Turns out, according to Webster's, that rann = house and saka = search in Old Norse. I had no idea that "ransack" was that old. I would have guessed it was some 19th-century robber baron/ Grand Age of Steam Locomotion kind of concept. I never would have guessed that Viking farmers would rannsaka their turf hovels, looking for the lost high-seat pillars.

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