Where did Spanish and Portuguese get the word “comer”

From Your Digest
Ian MacKinnell
Ian MacKinnell, Specially interested in the history of Romance and Germanic languages for 50 yrs

Where did Spanish and Portuguese get the word “comer” (“to eat”)? The Latin was “manducare,” and most other Romance languages use a descendant word (French “manger,” Italian “mangiare,” Romanian “a mânca,” Catalan “menjer,” etc).

comedere (to eat up entirely, consume, eat) is a well-attested verb in classical Latin — see Glossa: a Latin dictionary. It was derived from com+edere. It survived in Iberian Romance.

The normal Latin verb for eating was edere (to eat: Glossa: a Latin dictionary). This did not survive in Romance.

Edere had a number of synonyms in Latin: “comedo, vescor, pascor, devoro, haurio, mando, ceno, epulor”, and mando itself (to chew) had the synonym manduco. Manduco survived in Romance outside Iberia.

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