Peninsulas

Here’s an example of language difference affecting thought.

Latin gave 2 words to make English’s peninsula:

paene + insula

Paene means “almost”, and insula is “island, so our peninsulas are almost islands, almost cut off from the rest of the world on its eogcentric “main”lands.

But in Chinese, the sense of the word has been cut down to:

半岛

半 is “half”, and 岛 “island”. A peninsula is geographically surrounded on 3 sides by water, but in Chinese only half-liberated.

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