FRIDAY means it’s the week-end !!!!!!
We often glide away from work feeling free, seeking friends, and… shall we dare say it…
seeking LOVE !!!
The crazy thing is that, etymologically-speaking, friday actually reflects all 3 of these meanings- freedom, friendship, love. It’s true, but don’t take my word for it. Discover here for yourself—- to do so, we’ll have to set off on another journée in language to trace the etymology of friday back age by age, and language by language. Today is special, though, because we’ve talked about the ancient Indo-European language family on this blog many times before, but this Friday, we’ll finally get to India
First, we’ll just take a quick detour to Scandanavia to better understand the origins of the Fri in Friday. As we learned here, Wednesday comes from Woden’s day or Odin’s day (The Nordic deity). Well, Odin, despite his divinity, felt a certain need for companionship in heaven, so he found himself a diva by the name of Frigg.
Friday is Frigg’s day. Frīgedaeg (friday in Old English) shows a bit more Frigg and gets us closer to the roots of the feeling behind friday as well. In Old English the word for “free” was frēo, and a cognate (or shared root) in Old High German was Frīa, the OHG way of saying— Odin’s wife, Frigg.
Say the last three words “outloud”. Freo Fria Frigg
Remarkably close sounds, right?
From Old english, Frēo becomes “fre” in middle english, and is spoken as FREE in 2012. BUT, what’s interesting is not moving forwards in time with “free”, but moving backwards. Frēo is a derivative of the root frī in Old Frisian, Old Saxon, Old High and Middle German.
Old norse frithr means ”love” or “peace”
And in Old English frithu meant “love” or “peace”
OHG fridu, peace,
In Gothic frijōn, to love
and finally in SANSKRIT !!!!
Priyás means beloved, or used as a verb, prīyate, he loves.
Say it to yourself real quick— ”pree” “free”.
Sounds are acutally pretty close, aren’t they?
(this P-F change is actually called Grimm’s law; it represents a fundamental shift in pronunciation among germanic languages (among many other tongues) in the medieval days… more here and read “The Unfolding of Language” as suggested by Mike in the comments below for the full story!)
Wikipedia gives its own slight twist here:
“Old Norse Frigg (genitive Friggjar), Old Saxon Fri, and Old English Frig are derived from Common Germanic Frijjō. Frigg is cognate with Sanskrit prīyā́ which means “wife.” The root also appears in Old Saxon fri which means “beloved lady”, in Swedish as fria (“to propose for marriage”) and in Icelandic as frjá which means “to love.”
Well… it doesn’t stop there, either.
Friend = Modern English
Frend = Middle English
Frēond = Old English
WHICH is the present participle (or gerund) of frēon… a contracted form of
frēogan, the Old Engish verb for “to love”
OK, OK, OK… hold up. Let’s get this straight, sweet and simple. What we’re sayin is that a nordic goddess, love, peace, friend, freedom, the freemasons, and Friday are all tied together linguistically ???
… considering the freemasons, there’s a certain feel of conspiracy in it all, isn’t there ! ? !
What’s most important to retain?
Language is a reflection of our view of the world. All of these FRI words have a very similar feeling, and really do reflect a similar meaning. Don’t you love your friends? If in love, isn’t that person often also your best friend? Don’t you feel freedom and peace when you are with these wonderful people?
It is FRIDAY
so re-lax (or “lax again”)
and let go (of what? …LOL)
and before we take leave, I’ll throw out two last plays on words:
The trick about love, in the end, is finding freedom in engagement, or being in balance with what seems like opposites… which is what “being in balance” means.
SO, I hope you all find friends, freedom, love, and peace on Friday cuz that’s what it’s meant for, and that’s what it means too!
commons credit for happy chihuahua to “neitherfanboy” here etymological inspiration for 10 years now from here