Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Latin Errors

A dear friend now residing in New Zealand closed off an e to us with the phrase "Ka Kite Ano" remarking that's a common phrase there.

Because it had "ano" in it and I had two years of high school Latin, I deduced that she was writing "Happy New Year."  As both NZ and Australia are commonly referred to as "Down Under" I just assumed they were on a different timetable and that Jan. 23rd was as nothing to them for best wishes.

But to make sure I was right, I Googled the phrase and ... drum roll ... it means "See you later" in Maori. 

Now teased by why ano there isn't year here, I turned to faithful Google. 

Back-up for my assumption:
Spanish:  Feliz Ano Nuevo
French:  Bonne Annee

Okay, dissecting further.  Maybe "ano" for later is a reference to "year" and if you didn't plan to see whomever you were addressing for a year or more, it was appropriate to use "year" for "later."

Still puzzled, but damned glad anyhow for two years of Latin.  Erred though I did.  Off to restore my amour-propre (self respect) with a few pages of Winnie Ille Pu (Winnie the Pooh, Latin edition.)

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