The term "false cognate" is sometimes used incorrectly for "false friend". False cognates are a pair of words in the same or different languages that are similar in form and meaning but have different roots. That is, they appear to be or are sometimes considered cognates when in fact they are not.
Friday, April 1, 2011
Sometimes new fields and specializations take existent terms that are related to a complete different field and assign them a new meaning. This was the case on the Internet with the "icons" (medieval art term) and now, with the horror of the tsunami in Japan with the term "Sarcophagus". The Sarcophagus in ancient ages defined the place were (usually royalty) were buried, but on the latest news, you will find it relating to the burying place of nuclear waste. Sorts out that nuclear waste, after being used for generating energy, has to be buried, and the place where the radioactive residuals are placed is called "Sarcophagus". During the terrible tragedy of the tsunami in Fokushima, the sarcophagus of the nuclear plant was damaged (as well as in Chernobyl) and will need to be reconstructed in order to make sure there are no leaks. I must say that the similarities with the precious ancient object that was specially designed for royalty and the horrible huge cement monsters that bury inside all the fears of the modern world have only one factor in common: the CURSE that will fell on the heads of all those attempting to break them apart...