Many English words come from other languages, but this list highlights some of our favorites from non-Romance languages - i.e. they don't trace back to Latin - that sound almost the same in the original.
Language of Origin:
About the Word:
Karaoke, the beloved/hated entertainment that involves non-professional singers performing without live bands, has a poetic-sounding origin: "empty orchestra."
It comes from the Japanese kara ("empty") + ōke, short for ōkesutora ("orchestra").
That same kara also appears in karate: "empty" + te ("hand").
Karaoke became popular in Japan among businessmen in the late 1970s, and gained widespread popularity in the U.S. in the late 1980s.