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Knock on Wood

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Edited by Richard Walker, Thursday, 20 Aug 2020, 00:41

Knock-knock!

Who's there?

Wooden chair.

Wooden chair who?

Wooden chair like to know?

When I first visited Greece, amongst friends who did not know English, they would politely gesture to a chair and say Kathiste = be seated. The meaning was clear and intuitive. And later I learned that a cathedral is called a cathedral because it has a special seat - a cathedra - where a bishop sits in office, and it comes from the same Greek root.

But only tonight did I realise that English chair, French chaise, are from the same root. Obvious now, and probably why all those years ago I straightaway understood Kathiste.

English has borrowed from French then; but we still have stool (German for chair is Stuhl) and sit (German for sit is sitzen, Dutch is zitten). Which reminds me...

Knock-knock!

     Who's there?

Clog.

    Clog who?

Wooden shoe like to know?




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