As I continue to self-study German by reading the German press, I keep encountering in newspapers more and more German words that look similar to and have the same meaning as English words. Some of the recent examples are:
koordinieren, explodieren, das Meeting, das Dokument, kriminell
coordinate, explode, the meeting, the document, criminal
So, I wonder if it is possible to approximate the percentage of such words in German (regardless of origin, be it English, Latin or other).
- The corpus should be journalistic texts, not literature, spoken language, scientific or technical texts. COSMAS2 mostly consists of such, but one would have to exclude, e.g., Goethe’s works, Grimm’s fairytales and anything with Belletristik in the name of the corpus.
- All types of words count except for high-frequency closed-class particles (e.g. in) and names, i.e. mostly verbs, adjectives and nouns.
- We’re interested in lexemes that occur at all in the corpus (occurrence) and not how often they do (relative or absolute frequency). The ratio is based on lemmas, not inflected word forms.
- Common Germanic origins do not count if the words were affected by the High German consonant shift (e.g. foot vs. Fuß/Pfote). No difference is made between Germanic, Romance, Greek or non-Indoeuropean etymology.
- False friends do not count, but a slightly different meaning of cognates is okay as long as there’s overlap and they may be the less common synonym.