Word of the day – rhewlif

The Welsh word rhewlif was mentioned during Iolo Willams’ programme, Byd Iolo, on Radio Cymru yesterday. At first I wasn’t quite sure what he was talking about, but then I realised the word was a compound of rhew (frozen) and llif (flood) and guessed that it meant glacier. He was in Patagonia at the time, so the context helped. It’s great when you can work out what a word means without having to look it up.

Another Welsh word for glacier is afon iâ (ice river). The equivalent in Irish is oighearshruth (ice river/flow) and in Chinese it’s 冰川 (bīng chuān) – ice river.

The English word glacier comes from the France glacier, which is apparently from Savoy dialect word glacière (moving mass of ice) and is related to glace (ice).

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This entry was posted in Chinese, Irish, Language, Welsh, Words and phrases.

2 Responses to Word of the day – rhewlif

  1. Peter J. Franke says:

    In Dutch it is: “gletscher”. That’s from German I guess.

  2. Matthew Austin says:

    It’s also глетчер (gletcher) in Russian – borrowed from the German.