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vagitus

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vagitus

Postby M. Henri Day » Tue Oct 25, 2005 8:18 am

No, this word, which is hardly current (only three of the 922 dictionaries to which alphadictionary.com provides access list an entry), and which one is most likely to hear on an obstetric/neonatal ward, does not mean what you think it does ! But inspired by wordsmith's A.Word.A.Day, I thought I'd suggest it as GWotD, despite the possibilities for misunderstanding....

Henri

vagitus (vuh-JI-tuhs) noun

The cry of a newborn.

[From Latin vagire (to wail).]
曾记否,到中流击水,浪遏飞舟?
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Postby Brazilian dude » Tue Oct 25, 2005 9:20 am

Yes, I thought of what you thought I had thought of, but then I remembered this Portuguese word vagido, which, besides having the sense you pointed to, also means lamentation, whining, complaint, in Portuguese (2nd definition).

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Postby M. Henri Day » Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:26 am

Garzanti provides a definition of the Italian verb «vagire» similar to the one for the English noun above, but interestingly enough a second definition as well, which is metaphorical and refers not to the wailing but to the time at which it takes place :

v. intr. [io vagisco, tu vagisci ecc. ; aus. avere]
1 piangere, detto di neonati
2 (fig. lett.) essere agli inizi, ai primordi, detto di un'arte, una civiltà e sim.


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Postby Flaminius » Tue Oct 25, 2005 12:40 pm

I remember reading a book that suggested Vaticanus is related to vagitus. "Va" (/wa:/) seems to be a cross cultural onomatopoeia for vagitus voice.
Last edited by Flaminius on Wed Oct 26, 2005 1:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Tue Oct 25, 2005 12:59 pm

but interestingly enough a second definition as well, which is metaphorical and refers not to the wailing but to the time at which it takes place :

La ringrazio tanto, Signor Henri, non n'ero proprio conscio.

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I love vagitus

Postby Dr. Goodword » Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:48 pm

I love words that wakeup the dirty-minded only to turn out to be positively antiseptic. There is little in dictionaries (other than medical dictionaries) on the word, so if you know of any cognates in other languages, like the Portuguese and Italian ones already mentioned, I would be obliged.
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Postby Stargzer » Thu Nov 03, 2005 7:10 pm

Brazilian dude wrote:
but interestingly enough a second definition as well, which is metaphorical and refers not to the wailing but to the time at which it takes place :

La ringrazio tanto, Signor Henri, non n'ero proprio conscio.

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Postby Brazilian dude » Thu Nov 03, 2005 9:43 pm

Spanish: vagido
s.m. Voz o llanto característicos del recién nacido
ETIMOLOGÍA: Del latín vagitus, y este de vagire (gritar, lanzar un vagido).
ORTOGRAFÍA: Dist. de vahído.
http://clave.librosvivos.net/

French: Vagir - Pousser de faibles cris. Vagissant, ante - Qui vagit. Vagissement n.m. - Cri de l'enfant nouveau-né; Cri plaintif et faible (de quelques animaux)
Le Robert Micro Poche

Catalan: vagit
[s. XX; del ll. vagitus 'crit, crit de dolor']
m Gemec, plor, de l'infant acabat de néixer.
http://www.grec.net/cgibin/lexicx.pgm?GECART=0140144

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