Thank you, James Trimble, for creating an informative time waster combining all of my favorite travel geek interests – maps, Europe, linguistic patterns, and language evolution. As if his work on UK Data Explorer wasn’t cool enough, Trimble has created a page that allows readers to plug in any English word – including curse words – and have it translated across a map of Europe. You can fool around with the map here.
According to Trimble, “This page was inspired by the etymology maps by Bezbojnikul on reddit (which are much more informative than this map). It was built using D3, maps from Natural Earth, and the Google Translate API.”
Take the word, “sexy.” More than half of the languages represented use the same spelling and pronunciation. If I wanted to hit on someone during my European travels, the map shows me that I have to modify this adjective once I hit Iceland, where it changes to kynþokkafullur. To me, it’s easier to see a visual representation of the word I’m looking for, than carrying around individual language guides for each place.
What words were you surprised to learn about via Trimble’s map?