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Parca

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Parca

Postby Ilka » Thu May 12, 2005 4:30 pm

Hi everybody,

I've been learning Spanish for years -- without spending much time on it and therefore without much progress -- but anyway, today I came across Parca, a name used to signify "death".

Does anyone know the origins of this name? I thought perhaps from mythology or literature.

Thanks.

Ilka
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Postby tcward » Thu May 12, 2005 5:23 pm

Hiya, Ilka!

I've heard a lot of Spanish, but this is a new one to me. I'll have to defer to B-D or Apo...

Don't be a stranger! ;)

-Tim
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Postby uncronopio » Thu May 12, 2005 9:08 pm

Hi Ilka,

The 'Diccionario de la Real Academia' provides the following explanation:
parca.
(Del lat. parca).
1. f. Mit. Cada una de las tres deidades hermanas, Cloto, Láquesis y Átropos, con figura de viejas, de las cuales la primera hilaba, la segunda devanaba y la tercera cortaba el hilo de la vida del hombre.
2. f. poét. muerte (ǁ cesación de la vida).


In Greek mythology the three fates (Clotho, Lachesis, and Atropos) were called the Moirae, while in Roman mythology they were called Parcae. Thus, I assume that the common use of Parca derives from the actions of the fates that result in death.
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Postby tcward » Thu May 12, 2005 9:59 pm

Fascinating, uncronopio!

There's no connection to English park or parchment, by the way. I couldn't help but check...

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Postby Apoclima » Fri May 13, 2005 1:01 am

CÓMO CAMBIAN LOS TIEMPOS!

(Vital Aza 1815-1912)
La fatalidad, el sino,
el hado, la parca fiera,
el arroyo cristalino
y la tórtola parlera...


Apo
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Postby Apoclima » Fri May 13, 2005 1:18 am

RETIRO DE QUIEN EXPERIMENTA CONTRARIA LA SUERTE, YA PROFESANDO VIRTUDES, Y YA VICIOS

El son de la tijera que se afila
oyen alegres mis desdichas sumas;
corta a su vuelo la ambición las plumas,
pues ya la Parca corta lo que hila


Francisco de Quevedo y Villegas

Apo
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Postby Brazilian dude » Fri May 13, 2005 10:41 am

I didn't know Parca referred to death. What I did know is that parca is the feminine form of parco, which means laconic, frugal, or meager, as in -no- fue su parca respuesta (no, he replied laconically/tersely); es muy parco con el dinero (he is very frugal/thrifty with his money); and cobra un sueldo parco (he earns a meager salary.

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Postby Stargzer » Fri May 13, 2005 6:25 pm

uncronopio wrote:Hi Ilka,

The 'Diccionario de la Real Academia' provides the following explanation:
parca.
(Del lat. parca).
1. f. Mit. Cada una de las tres deidades hermanas, Cloto, Láquesis y Átropos, con figura de viejas, de las cuales la primera hilaba, la segunda devanaba y la tercera cortaba el hilo de la vida del hombre.
2. f. poét. muerte (ǁ cesación de la vida).

. . .


For those of us not conversant in Spanish, courtesy of SYSTRANet (found on the AlphaDictionary home page under Services/Translations/Online Electronic Translation (for rough drafts only)) :

(Of lat. sparing). 1, f. Mit. Each one of the three deities sisters, Cloto, Láquesis and Átropos, with figure of old, of which first it spun, second wound and third it cut the thread of the life of the man.

2, f. poét. death (cessation of the life).


As Uncronopio said, the Three Fates.
Regards//Larry

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Postby Stargzer » Fri May 13, 2005 6:39 pm

Apoclima wrote:CÓMO CAMBIAN LOS TIEMPOS!

(Vital Aza 1815-1912)
La fatalidad, el sino,
el hado, la parca fiera,
el arroyo cristalino
y la tórtola parlera...


Apo


HOW THEY CHANGE THE TIMES!

The fatality, but, the destiny, sparing the fierce one, the
crystalline stream and the parlera tórtola...


I found tórtola means "turtledove" at WordReference.com but didn't find parlera.
Regards//Larry

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Postby Stargzer » Fri May 13, 2005 6:48 pm

Apoclima wrote:RETIRO DE QUIEN EXPERIMENTA CONTRARIA LA SUERTE, YA PROFESANDO VIRTUDES, Y YA VICIOS

El son de la tijera que se afila
oyen alegres mis desdichas sumas;
corta a su vuelo la ambición las plumas,
pues ya la Parca corta lo que hila


Francisco de Quevedo y Villegas

Apo


RETIREMENT OF THAT OPPOSITE EXPERIENCES The LUCK, EITHER PROFESSING VIRTUES, And OR VICES

They are of the scissors that sharpen hear glad my extreme
misfortunes; it cuts to its flight the ambition the pens, because already Sparing the short one what spins


I think the machine lost something in the translation there! I'll have to tough it out later.
Regards//Larry

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Postby Brazilian dude » Fri May 13, 2005 9:45 pm

Parlera, feminine from parlero:

parlero, ra.

1. adj. Que habla mucho.
2. adj. Que lleva chismes o cuentos de una parte a otra, o dice lo que debiera callar.
3. adj. Dicho de un ave: cantora.
4. adj. Dicho de una cosa: Que de alguna manera da a entender los afectos del ánimo o descubre lo que se ignoraba. Ojos parleros.
5. adj. Que hace ruido armonioso. Fuente parlera. Arroyo parlero.


In other words, someone who talks too much or talking about a bird, a singing/cooing bird.

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Postby Apoclima » Fri May 13, 2005 11:40 pm

How Times Change

Fortune, fate,
Destiny, the cruel death,
The crystalline stream
And the garrulous turtledove

The other one is much harder:

Retirement Of One Who Experiences Contrary Luck, Now Professing Virtues, And Then Vices

The sound of the scissor that is sharpened
My immense misfortunes hear happy;
Upon its flight ambition clips its own wings,
Since already Death Herself cuts that which she spins

Well, that will have to do!

Apo
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Postby Ilka » Sat May 14, 2005 5:41 am

uncronopio wrote:...the three fates (Clotho, Lachesis, and Atropos) ...in Roman mythology... were called Parcae

Thanks Uncronopio. Of course, your answer just shifted the question to another language. What is the origin of parcae?

Here's a possible answer from The Encyclopedia Mythica:
Originally there was only one of them, Parca, a goddess of birth. Her name is derived from parere ("create, give birth") but later it was associated with pars (Greek: moira, "part") and thus analogous with the three Greek Moirae.

However, Wikipediaclaims parcae means "the sparing ones" in Latin, which is related to parsimonious.

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Postby Ilka » Sat May 14, 2005 5:45 am

Parca occurs in the lyrics of a song we read in Spanish class by Joan Manuel Serrat called Mediterráneo:

Ay, si un día para mi mal
viene a buscarme la parca.
Empujad al mar mi barca
con un levante otoñal
y dejad que el temporal
desguace sus alas blancas.


Apoclima, perhaps you'd like to translate?

Ilka[/i]
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Postby Ilka » Sat May 14, 2005 6:12 am

I took a look to see if Shakespeare didn't use Parca. No, it seems not, not directly anyway. But remember the three Weird Sisters in Macbeth?

Well, not only did the Greeks and the Romans have three figures of fate that weave the course of our lives, so did the Norse. They called them the Norns -- Urd or Urth, who held the past; Verthandi, the present; and Skuld, who wove the future. Urth was variously considered the mother of the other two, or an embodiment of all three. Her name gave us the word weird, which in Old English was a noun meaning "fate". The Norns were also known as the Weird Sisters -- those who have the power to control another's fate. By the time Shakespeare wrote Macbeth around 1600, weird had come to mean "witch" in Scotland.

Ilka

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