Yet more

Recently been looking at “Laŭ”, a word I think I might have mentioned liking the sound of before (edit: indeed I have! Here). It means “According to/following/along”. I’ve been trying to find or think of uses in word building, because it has such a useful meaning, but is such a neat and tiny word.

So here are some that I’ve found:

  • laŭleĝa = legitimate, legal (leĝ0 = law, leĝa = legal, so lit. “according to law”)
  • laŭe = accordingly, according to that, conforming to that
  • laŭvorte = verbatim, word-for-word (vorto = word, so lit. “according to words”)
  • laŭiri = to go along (iri = to go)
  • laŭnature = according to nature (naturo = nature, nature = naturally, so lit.”by naturally, along naturally”)
  • laŭcela = adequate (cela = goal,aim,purpose, so lit. “according to purpose”)
  • laŭplane = according to plan (plano = plan)

I love the sound of “laŭe”. I think I am indeed hooked on the “aŭe” sound.

I also feel like these words really neatly express the concepts identified. Sentences like:

  • Mi laboras laŭplane = I am working according to plan
So neat!

8 thoughts on “Yet more

  1. Is there like some way to know if a word like laŭ should be used like the compact noun examples, or as a separate word in a phrase?
    For example, if I didn’t know better, and I was trying to figure out how to say ‘according to plan’ in my head, I might be tempted to say…
    laŭ plani, instead of, laŭplane.


    • In that case “plani” means “to plan,planning”. So putting it with “laŭ” is kinda like “According to to plan”, or more Englishy “According to planning” perhaps? A slightly weird thing to say, and not what you want to say.

      The separate word version might be something like “laŭ plano” = “according to (a) plan”.

      So either:

      Mi laboras laŭplane. Or
      Mi laboras laŭ plano.

      These are mostly equivalent as far as I’m aware. Mostly style differences.

      Mi laboras laŭ la plano

      This could be slightly different, since the “la” suggests a very certain plan. But the “laŭplane” example could still be used about a definite plan, it’s just not drawing as much attention to it.

      Often the difference between combining words or using separate, is a matter of style, or minor emphasis.


      laŭ la leĝo = according to the law
      laŭleĝa = legitimate, legal

      Notice the second example is kinda like “according to law”, but by fitting the words together, it gives it it’s own specific meaning (legitimate) rather than just the collection of its parts.

      Also see a couple of short previous posts on issues to do with when to glob words together or not:


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