There's no need to post this identical message in more than one place on the forum. Since you seem to favor posting both here and to your blog, I'll do the same...
Modern dictionaries usually say that an English word is derived from a Latin one and they stop there. They do not examine or analyze the etymon of the Latin word.
That's because the only step back from Latin usually leads to Indo-European reconstructions. Where the Latin word is a borrowing
from Greek, most dictionaries I've seen will then give the Greek, as for example, poet
, or your recent govern
That is the reason why I delve into older dictionaries like the following two (Both of them are freely available by google-books):
1. English Etymology; or, a derivative Dictionary of the English Language. By George William Lemon (London, M.DCC.LXXXIII).
2. Etymological Dictionary of the Latin Language by F.E.J. Valpy (London, 1828).
This is really a problem. Both of these books are far too old to be taken seriously as etymological authorities. Doubtless there will be a few exceptions, but for the most part no linguist believes Latin is derived from Greek. They are siblings.
(I was going to say one more thing on your blog, but I forgot, so I'll mention it here â€” familiarize yourself with the principles of the Neogrammarian Hypothesis to learn exactly what's wrong with the ad-hoc etymologies you're getting from these old books.)
The best and most thorough introduction to modern Indo-European historical linguistics is Benjamin W. Fortson's, Indo-European Language and Culture: an Introduction
, Blackwell Publishing, 2004. Unfortunately it's a bit expensive, but it will give you the background that I, other people on Textkit, and nearly every modern student of Historical linguistics are working from.
As I said last week on the Textkit forum, posts comparing cognates in Latin, Greek and English are interesting and would be welcome. But your insistence on claiming Latin derives from, rather than is related to, Greek is going to irritate people every time you post. It just isn't true, and we don't want beginners getting bad information.