The Latin word umbra, meaning "shadow", has had a surprisingly large influence on our language. You might immediately recognize it as the source of the diminutized word umbrella, which literally translates to "little shadow". We also have the words umbrage, meaning "darkness", and umbrageous, meaning "shady" - those were borrowed from French in the sixteenth century. The color umber, describing the earthy brown pigment, comes from Italian ombra. Then we can also tack on the Latin word paene, meaning "almost", to form the word penumbra, referring to the "shadow cast by a celestial body during an eclipse". And (my personal favorite) add the prefix sub-, meaning "under", throw it through a couple centuries of French, and you also get the word somber.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic. This year, I graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Government and Linguistics. There, I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society and wrote a thesis on Serbo-Croatian language policy, magna cum laude. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy philosophy, trivia, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.