Threshold (door)

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A worn-out wooden threshold NMP 1780s House interior Door Sill.JPG
A worn-out wooden threshold

A threshold is the sill of a door. Some cultures attach special symbolism to a threshold. It is called a door saddle in British English and in New England.

Sill plate bottom horizontal member of a wall or building to which vertical members are attached

A sill plate or sole plate in construction and architecture is the bottom horizontal member of a wall or building to which vertical members are attached. The word plate is typically omitted in America and carpenters speak simply of the "sill". Other names are ground plate, ground sill, groundsel, and midnight sill. Sill plates are usually composed of lumber but can be any material. The timber at the top of a wall is often called a top plate, pole plate, wall plate or simply "the plate".

Door movable structure used to open and close an entrance

A door is a panel that covers an opening in a building, room or vehicle. Doors are usually made of a hard, semi-permeable, and hard-to-break substance, but sometimes consisting of a hard frame into which windows or screens have been fitted. Doors are often attached by hinges to a frame. Doors make ingress into or egress from a building, room, or vehicle easier to manage. The panel may be moved in various ways to allow or prevent ingress or egress. In most cases, a door's interior matches its exterior side. But in other cases the two sides are radically different.

British English is the standard dialect of English language as spoken and written in the United Kingdom. Variations exist in formal, written English in the United Kingdom. For example, the adjective wee is almost exclusively used in parts of Scotland and Ireland, and occasionally Yorkshire, whereas little is predominant elsewhere. Nevertheless, there is a meaningful degree of uniformity in written English within the United Kingdom, and this could be described by the term British English. The forms of spoken English, however, vary considerably more than in most other areas of the world where English is spoken, so a uniform concept of British English is more difficult to apply to the spoken language. According to Tom McArthur in the Oxford Guide to World English, British English shares "all the ambiguities and tensions in the word 'British' and as a result can be used and interpreted in two ways, more broadly or more narrowly, within a range of blurring and ambiguity".

Contents

Etymology

Various popular folk etymologies of this word exist, some of which were even recorded by dictionaries in the past and even created by early linguists before linguistics became a strictly scientific field. Some of these folk etymologies date from the time of Old English or even earlier.

Folk etymology or reanalysis – sometimes called pseudo-etymology, popular etymology, analogical reformation, or etymological reinterpretation – is a change in a word or phrase resulting from the replacement of an unfamiliar form by a more familiar one. The form or the meaning of an archaic, foreign, or otherwise unfamiliar word is reanalyzed as resembling more familiar words or morphemes. Rebracketing is a form of folk etymology in which a word is broken down or "bracketed" into a new set of supposed elements. Back-formation, creating a new word by removing or changing parts of an existing word, is often based on folk etymology.

Old English, or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages. It was brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers probably in the mid-5th century, and the first Old English literary works date from the mid-7th century. After the Norman conquest of 1066, English was replaced, for a time, as the language of the upper classes by Anglo-Norman, a relative of French. This is regarded as marking the end of the Old English era, as during this period the English language was heavily influenced by Anglo-Norman, developing into a phase known now as Middle English.

Many different forms of this word are attested in Old English, which shows that the original meaning of this word and especially of its latter half was already obscure at the time and that most or all of the different Old English spellings were the result of folk etymologies. [1] Although modern dictionaries do not yet record the results of the latest etymological research on this word, they do record the results of older research that shows that the second half is not related to the modern word hold. According to the linguist Anatoly Liberman, the most likely etymology is that the term referred to a threshing area that was originally not part of the doorway but was later associated with it:

Anatoly Liberman is a linguist, medievalist, etymologist, poet, translator of poetry, and literary critic.

At one time, it appears, the threshold was not part of a doorway. The word’s original form became obscure quite early and produced a whole bouquet of folk etymological doublets. Old High German driscubli stands especially close to the sought-after etymon. Most probably, the threshold was a place where corn was threshed (a threshing floor). The word contained a root and a suffix. That suffix has undergone numerous changes, for people tried to identify it with some word that could make sense to them. What remains unclear is not this process but the semantic leap. We are missing the moment at which the threshing floor, however primitive, began to denote the entrance to the room. [1]

Old High German earliest stage of the German language, spoken from 500/750 to 1050 AD

Old High German is the earliest stage of the German language, conventionally covering the period from around 750 to 1050. There is no standardised or supra-regional form of German at this period, and Old High German is an umbrella term for the group of continental West Germanic dialects which underwent the set of consonantal changes called the Second Sound Shift.

Cultural symbolism

In many cultures it has a special symbolism: for instance, in Poland, Ukraine and Russia it is considered bad luck to shake hands or kiss across the threshold when meeting somebody. [2] [3] In many countries it is considered good luck for a bridegroom to carry the bride over the threshold to their new home. [4]

Poland Republic in Central Europe

Poland, officially the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 administrative subdivisions, covering an area of 312,696 square kilometres (120,733 sq mi), and has a largely temperate seasonal climate. With a population of approximately 38.5 million people, Poland is the sixth most populous member state of the European Union. Poland's capital and largest metropolis is Warsaw. Other major cities include Kraków, Łódź, Wrocław, Poznań, Gdańsk, and Szczecin.

Ukraine Sovereign state in Eastern Europe

Ukraine, sometimes called the Ukraine, is a country in Eastern Europe. Excluding Crimea, Ukraine has a population of about 42.5 million, making it the 32nd most populous country in the world. Its capital and largest city is Kiev. Ukrainian is the official language and its alphabet is Cyrillic. The dominant religions in the country are Eastern Orthodoxy and Greek Catholicism. Ukraine is currently in a territorial dispute with Russia over the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014. Including Crimea, Ukraine has an area of 603,628 km2 (233,062 sq mi), making it the largest country entirely within Europe and the 46th largest country in the world.

Russia transcontinental country in Eastern Europe and Northern Asia

Russia, or the Russian Federation, is a transcontinental country in Eastern Europe and North Asia. At 17,125,200 square kilometres (6,612,100 sq mi), Russia is by a considerable margin the largest country in the world by area, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area, and the ninth most populous, with about 146.79 million people as of 2019, including Crimea. About 77% of the population live in the western, European part of the country. Russia's capital, Moscow, is one of the largest cities in the world and the second largest city in Europe; other major cities include Saint Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg and Nizhny Novgorod. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a wide range of environments and landforms. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares land borders with Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia and North Korea. It shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk and the U.S. state of Alaska across the Bering Strait. However, Russia recognises two more countries that border it, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, both of which are internationally recognized as parts of Georgia.

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References

  1. 1 2 "Our habitat: the etymology of 'threshold'". OUPblog. 2015-02-11. Retrieved 2018-09-04.
  2. "Polish Superstitions". Polish Language.org. Retrieved May 13, 2012.
  3. "Russian Superstition". Russian language for lovers. Retrieved May 13, 2012.
  4. "Carrying the Bride: Exactly Why?". How Stuff Works. Retrieved May 13, 2012.