EP words of the week (#70): banda desenhada / Mónica

Comic strips as a form of cultural entertainment for the masses are relatively new; they accompanied the rise of the mass-produced newspapers of the late 19th century – and eventually evolved into

The EP word for comics as an art form is [a] banda desenhada, which means “drawn-on strip” (desenhado/a is the past participle of the verb desenhar, to draw, here used as an adjective). In BP, they’re known as [os] quadrinhos (lit. “little panels“).

Foto tirada no Museu Belga da Banda Desenhada. Photo taken at the Belgian Comic Strip Museum.

Portugal doesn’t have a big tradition on traditional comics, but the influence of Japanese anime/manga and American animation/superhero fare (and the freedom afforded to young people to actually go to college and study arts and design, coupled with a stronger market in those fields which allows them to build a career) has seen the emergence of a burgeoning comics/manga scene, with many creators using social media platforms such as DeviantArt and Tumblr to share their creations with the world.

In Brazil, one of the most famous and long-running comics is A Turma da Mônica (“Monica’s gang”), which was also quite popular on this side of the Atlantic a few years ago (I distinctly remember my middle school library having a number of small issues of the series next to Disney comics and the Adventures of Tintin).

One big difference was in the title of the comics (or at least the way we pronounce it) – girls named Monica are known as Mónica here; EP has an open stressed syllable (here, o) when the next syllable starts with m or n while BP keeps it closed; this is the exact same rule/language phenomenon that yields Polóniaténis, Andrómeda, Vénus in EP but Polônia, tênis, Andrômeda, and Vênus in BP.

4 thoughts on “EP words of the week (#70): banda desenhada / Mónica

  1. João Duarte November 3, 2016 / 12:37 pm

    And in the musical world, filarmónica/filarmônica (philharmonic)… :)


    • luisdomingos November 3, 2016 / 8:24 pm

      Exactly! Also harmónica/harmónica (harmonica, the instrument), supersónico/a / supersônico/a (supersonic); [escala] pentatónica/pentatônica (pentatonic [scale]) :D The list goes on (as you know so well!)


  2. Patricia Eckmeier November 24, 2016 / 3:36 pm

    That’s really interesting and good to know! Do you also have “afónico” and “dodecafónico” in Portuguese?


    • luisdomingos November 24, 2016 / 7:13 pm

      Yes, that’s right :) “Afónico/a” in the sense of “having the lost the power to speak” is a quite common word (for example, if you lose your speach temporarily because of a throat infection, you could say “estou afónico/a”).

      “Dodecafónico” is obviously more of a specialized term within the field of musical theory and teaching, but still perfect EP.

      If, regarding the first example, you’re thinking about atonal music, the adjective used would be “atonal” or “pós-tonal” (again, both specialized term within this specific field).

      Thanks for your feedback, and good luck with your studies :)


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