German and Spanish
01 Dec '17 — two distinct words that are the same in other languages
”…we needed to relax a bit. That’s when we first learned the double meaning of mañana. It can mean two things: it can mean ‘tomorrow,’ or it can mean, ‘Yeah, later, like tomorrow or something.’ When you’re told, ‘Mañana, mañana,’ you’re actually going to get it tomorrow morning.” - Hartwood: Between the Land and the Sea
While in Berlin, I was perplexed by how tomorrow and morning were the same word. Morgen, when capitalized, means morning. The capitalization differentiates the word from morgen, which is the word for tomorrow.
When speaking, how can anyone tell whether morgen is capitalized or not? It’s easily identified by the prepositions, but still, from looking at vocabulary flashcards, it seems nuts that tomorrow and morning are the same words.
When describing tomorrow morning, German doesn’t follow Spanish in repeating the two words. Morgen früh is German’s ‘mañana, mañana.’
Perhaps both cultures treat tomorrow and morning the same way. Can’t get everything finished today? It’s ok. There’s tomorrow. Or one could equally say, there’s the morning, assuming you’re conversing no earlier than the morning of the current day.
Just relax. The sun will come up tomorrow.