runenklinge (runenklinge) wrote in linguaphiles,

Etymology: Fan & Tifoso

Hello linguaphiles!
I'm writing a paper with a short, little chapter on the etymology of the word "fan".
For that, I've been using several dictionaries in Latin, German, English and Italian with variyng degrees of success.

1) I remembered that in Italian, we learned that the translation of english "fan" is italian "tifoso"; but I have looked it up and tifoso was almost exclusively used for "sports fan; fan of one particular player or sports team/parteggiare con soverchio calore per un gioccatore o una squadra"; only one dictionary mentioned that tifoso could be used for "fan of a famous person". And another dictionary (but just one) did have the word "fan" as an Italian word, a borrowed term.

So, does tifoso mean exclusively sports fan or can it refer to things like actors, singers, movies etc?

Do people use "fan" in Italian?

What would I say if I wanted to say that I was a fan of, for example Harry Potter?
Faccio il tifo per Harry Potter.
Sono un fan di Harry Potter.
Something else?

2) The first meaning of tifoso was always typhus;
Are tifoso-fan and tifoso-typhus the same word or homonyms? I've read that tifoso-fan actually comes from a milanese expression (fare lo svenevole.....not that I really get this one)....and also that it is related to tifoso-typhus, meaning a "fever for sports"

I've come across both...I think, my Italian's not as good as I wished it were

3) So far, the etymology of fan as I could reconstruct it is english fan> english fanatic > latin fanaticus/a/um > latin fanum (temple) > latin fas (divine law/right)
But I've only seen "fas" mentioned once; most etymologies stopn with "fanum"; does anyone know if "fas" is indeed related to "fanum"?


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