02023-06-29 | Language | 0 comments

I like the word Lush. To me, the word sounds like its meaning. Translations of lush are üppig (German), luxuriante (French), and exuberante (Portuguese) – all quite different. Then it occurred to me, that the word might have developed from the opposite meaning. I learned that this is a common linguistic occurrence.

Lasch is a German word that means weak. Lascher Kaffee = weak coffee. The German Lasch is pronounced almost identically to the English lush. Lasch is lax in English, relâché in French, and relaxado in Portuguese. 

Then I realized that there is an English word, luscious, borrowed from the French language, and I think that’s where lush came from. The English language has a long tradition of shortening everything, so luscious became lush

I looked up lush in the Oxford Dictionary, to see whether I was close, and they write that lush is an alteration of lax by association with luscious.


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