WHY “TO FOLD” CAME TO HAVE A DIFFERENT MEANING IN ROMANIAN THAN IT DOES IN PORTUGUESE. A review by Tom Chivers of LINGO by Gaston Dorren in the TLS (December 12) compares descendants in modern languages of the Latin word “plicare”, which means “to fold”. In Romanian, the descendant (“pleca”) means “to leave”. In Portuguese, the descendant (chegar”) means “to arrive”.
Why the difference? The speculation is that Romanians were nomadic. Before one left, one folded the tent. On the other hand, the Portuguese were sailors, who folded their sails when they arrived.