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Tue Oct 13, 2015, 02:00 PM

'hijastro' & 'filiaster'

Both words mean 'stepson', and the Spanish is derived from the Latin. But why '-aster'? What does a star have to do with the meaning of 'step-' in English?

I asked this question to a classics professor at Cal State Long Beach. He replied that 'filiaster' has nothing to do with the noun 'aster', that the -er is just a masculine marker, and that the -ast- must be a bound Latin morpheme meaning 'step-'.

I wonder if anyone here agrees or disagrees with my friend the classics professor.

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Reply 'hijastro' & 'filiaster' (Original post)
Lionel Mandrake Oct 2015 OP
CaliforniaPeggy Oct 2015 #1

Response to Lionel Mandrake (Original post)

Tue Oct 13, 2015, 02:06 PM

1. As usual, I have no idea, my dear Lionel Mandrake...

But it sure is an interesting question!

Linguistics has always fascinated me. Thanks for your intriguing post.

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