Cognates: The window to understanding connections between languages



Language learners may not realize how their nativelanguage and the one they are studying are connected historically.  Understanding these connections canfacilitate the development of a greater vocabulary base without the necessityof learning individual words. While there are exceptions, many words have theexact same spelling with the exception of the suffix. The list of suffix'sbelow provides some examples of common words between English and Portuguese.There are about 3,000 cognates between English and Portuguese.

Word Endings / Suffixs

English                      Portuguese

Al                                al                                                         (animal/animal)

Ance                            ancia                                                 (fragāncia/fragrance)

Ism                              ismo                                                   (tourismo/tourism)

Ous                              oso                                                    (fabuloso/fabulous)

Tion                             cao                                                    (emocao/emotion)

Ty                                dade                                                  (cidade/city)


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