Tag Archives: Latin

Random beer-related thoughts (highlights of a FB conversation)

In a thought process totally unrelated to the Mets being 1-6 since the all star break I am spending some time trying to answer the question “why is Spain (and Portugal) the only country in Europe that doesn’t call beer “beer” or its Slavic cousin “Pivo”?

I had originally thought it was an Arabic word, but since Islam forbids alcohol I was confused, and now I find that it’s actually from Latin – which changes “why does Spanish NOT use “beer”” into “Why do all these other European languages USE the word “beer””

  • from my friend Mary: Fun linguistic fact: thegeorgian word for beer is “ludi.” But the word “ludi” in Russian means “people.” Weeeeeird!

  • Dann Russo the word “ludi” in Latin means “games”

supposedly “cerveza” comes from “grain strength” too

so if the Egyptians called it “hqt” and the Greeks called it “zuthos” the only place “beer” can come from is the verb “to drink” which means that beer was something “to drink”?
why, then is the GERMAN word “bier”? shouldn’t it be something else? or is it lazy German, like getting “Kaiser” from “Ceasar”?
My Friend Virginia: “why not from Latin bibere? Or from an ancient drunken german guy? I blame Pliny.”