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Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:49 pm
by Gawdzilla Sama
Gord wrote:I memorised the dictionary in Grade 1, I don't need no more lessons no more.

I think I mentioned that I spent several months in bed when I was 12, and a large dictionary was my primary reading material.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:28 am
by TJrandom
I like large dictionaries - they make good doorstops.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:51 am
by Gord
Full disclosure: My dictionary only went up to M. We couldn't afford the second half.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:09 pm
by Subaru7
'
The English language has quickly become a world-wide commercial jargon. This is apparently a point of pride to some people, but not to me; the price has been too high. English has lost its soul, and works of high literary merit are all but impossible in the pidgin English of the modern era.

Good English is like a fine brandy: it must be aged and carefully tended.

In the King James English Bible, the distinctions between "thou" and "thee", "ye" and "you" are scrupulously observed. Shakespeare also does a pretty good job, though in his usage we see that the rot has already set in. I find it very grating when he uses "you" as the subject of a verb, rather than "ye". I would maintain the distinction in my own speech, but too many people already think me odd, so there is no point in throwing more stumbling blocks in their way. But I do feel like a traitor to the English language when I say something like, "You must go to bed," rather than, "Ye must go to bed." It is like saying, "Him must go to bed." (But then, "him" is originally a dative form and not the accusative, so really, all one can do is tear one's hair and give up)

Early modern English is full of nuances which have disappeared in modern common speech. In the famous scene between Hamlet and his mother, there is a rich interplay between thou and you forms.

When the Queen first speaks to Hamlet in the bedroom scene, she uses the affectionate and familiar thou:

Hamlet, thou hast thy Father much offended.

But Hamlet is angry with her, and comes back with:

Mother, you have my Father much offended.

The Queen now puts her back up and responds with:

Come, come, you answer with an idle tongue.

Later, when she fears for her life, she bursts out with the thou of strong emotion:

What wilt thou do? Thou wilt not murder me?

Happily, French and German have maintained these distinctions which English, with a reprehensible lack of filial piety, has shucked off.
.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 4:45 am
by Gord
"Honour thy mother and thy father, you idiots." -- God

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:12 pm
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
Subaru7 wrote:'English has lost its soul, and works of high literary merit are all but impossible in the pidgin English of the modern era.

Hooey.

..............I say: HOOEY!!!!!!

If you can't express what you mean to say: buy a better dictionary. Ye can't go wrong.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 4:37 pm
by Poodle
Subaru7 wrote:English has lost its soul, and works of high literary merit are all but impossible in the pidgin English of the modern era. Good English is like a fine brandy: it must be aged and carefully tended.

Although I understand your stance, you are wrong as can be on both counts. There are now many varieties of English on offer, all of them fulfilling a purpose. All varieties of pidgin, for instance, had and still have purposes (I refer you to the OED). English has certainly moved on in the last couple of centuries but it is still a truism that the catalogue of good literature written in English will continue to grow. Harking back to earlier forms (often mistaken for 'more correct' forms) is the one sure way of stifling any future literary effort. All languages (except, pointedly. dead languages) evolve, as it should be. Freezing linguistic development is the one action GUARANTEED to kill off literary effort.
Like a fine brandy indeed - and every generation lays down a bit more for maturation.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 4:46 pm
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
Harking should be outlawed. It's too French.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 5:26 pm
by Poodle
May we.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:32 pm
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
Well, I only said French to be snarky, but turns out its "Middle English: of Germanic origin; related to German horchen, also to hearken" with two main branches: hark = to listen, and Harken = to double back on as hunting dogs do.

I love words………..snark too.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:25 pm
by Poodle
... but a good example to use. Beowulf was written in Old English, the Canterbury Tales were written in Middle English, Shakespeare wrote in Early Modern English and Ray Bradbury's Dandelion Wine (a beautifully written novel) was written in Modern English of the American persuasion as opposed to pidgin. The soul is still all there, although some homework may be necessary to understand the earlier versions of the language.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 8:06 am
by Gord
Poodle wrote:May we.

There are several french-speaking communities in Manitoba. In at least one of them, they pronounce "oui" the same way english-speakers pronounce "why". So, when they're agreeing with me, I think they're demanding an explanation instead. It can be very confusing.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 10:12 am
by Poodle
Gord wrote:
Poodle wrote:May we.

There are several french-speaking communities in Manitoba. In at least one of them, they pronounce "oui" the same way english-speakers pronounce "why". So, when they're agreeing with me, I think they're demanding an explanation instead. It can be very confusing.

That brings up the question of whether or not there is such a dialect pronunciation in France itself. It could explain why the EU exit negotiations are so difficult. :banghead:

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 3:22 am
by Gord
Dord: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dord

"Dord" was in the dictionary for a few years, beginning in 1934, because of an editing error. It was supposed to be an addition to the abbreviation "d", which in chemistry can be used to mean "density". You can use it as either capitalised or lower-case: "D" or "d". And that's why someone wrote "D or d: cont/ density" on a 3"x5" card. But the person editing things read "D or d" as "Dord", and a new word was born!

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:26 pm
by TJrandom
Noun - a person who comments - a commenter, or is it a commentator? Is there a difference? Which do you use?

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 3:11 pm
by Poodle
Different roots from different times, TJ - but both correct, although commentator is usually reserved for someone looking at a live event. There are hundreds of such apparently illogical things in English. Take a look at 'cleave', especially, which has two meanings which are direct opposites (stick together and split apart).

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:15 am
by Poodle

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:43 pm
by Gord
People make me crazy when they say things like this:

...centrifugal acceleration is more than 280 times smaller than the gravitational acceleration....

What does it mean to be "280 times smaller" than something else?

Let me give you a specific example so you'll know what I'm saying.

Imagine a rock that is 1 foot in diameter. Now imagine a rock that is 280 times smaller.

1 x 280 = 280 feet

Therefore the second rock is 280 feet smaller in diameter than the first rock, and therefore is -279 feet in diameter.

But that's not what they meant!

There's a similar problem when people say something is, for example, 10 times larger.

Imagine a rock that is 1 foot in diameter. Now imagine a rock that is 10 times larger.

1 x 10 = 10 feet.

Therefore the second rock is 10 feet in diameter larger than the first rock, and therefore is 11 feet in diameter.

But often that's not what they meant! Often they just mean the second rock is 10 feet in diameter! That's not 10 times larger, that's 10 times the size!

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 9:30 pm
by TJrandom
But 10 times larger does work for a sphere if the assumed answer is in volume.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:18 pm
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
Gord wrote: Imagine a rock that is 1 foot in diameter. Now imagine a rock that is 10 times larger.

1 x 10 = 10 feet.

Therefore the second rock is 10 feet in diameter larger than the first rock, and therefore is 11 feet in diameter.


I wager most people would say a 10 foot diameter rock is 10 times larger (in diameter) than is a 1 foot diameter rock. The ambiguity if you want one is that you only add 9 feet to the one foot to get 10 times bigger/larger/longer. Heh, heh.....I wonder if it works for other numbers???????

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:57 am
by Gord
bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:
Gord wrote: Imagine a rock that is 1 foot in diameter. Now imagine a rock that is 10 times larger.

1 x 10 = 10 feet.

Therefore the second rock is 10 feet in diameter larger than the first rock, and therefore is 11 feet in diameter.

I wager most people would say a 10 foot diameter rock is 10 times larger (in diameter) than is a 1 foot diameter rock. The ambiguity if you want one is that you only add 9 feet to the one foot to get 10 times bigger/larger/longer. Heh, heh.....I wonder if it works for other numbers???????

See, this is exactly what I'm talking about. If it's ten times the size, then it's only nine times larger. If it's twenty times the size, then it's only 19 times larger.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 5:21 am
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
Yeah....if the second rock is the same one foot large then the first foot is not larger...only the largeness after the equal one foot is actually larger......and there are only 9 other equal sized rocks........ So, I get it.

But thats not the convention.....and thats all that language is. The agreed upon convention.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 7:17 am
by Gord
I DON'T AGREE! And neither did any of my science professors, thirty years ago.

I mean, the words are literally incorrect -- the WORST KIND of incorrect!

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:35 am
by Poodle
Whoah!!! Largeness is not a linear function. Get the word 'cubic' in there, somewhere, please. Or go metric.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:53 pm
by Gord
Poodle wrote:Whoah!!! Largeness is not a linear function. Get the word 'cubic' in there, somewhere, please. Or go metric.

I don't diagree, I'm just picking one fight at a time.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sat Jul 21, 2018 12:11 pm
by Gord
During the early Middle Ages, people who weren't doing heavy labour tended to not eat an early meal. They preferred to have their first meal of the day around midafternoon. In England this meal was called "dinner", which came from the Old French word "disner", meaning "breakfast".

So, they ate breakfast at lunch and called it dinner.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sat Jul 21, 2018 5:13 pm
by landrew
I don't eat much for breakfast either. You can't get much work done with a big meal sitting in your gut.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 22, 2018 8:05 am
by Io
Gord wrote:During the early Middle Ages, people who weren't doing heavy labour tended to not eat an early meal. They preferred to have their first meal of the day around midafternoon. In England this meal was called "dinner", which came from the Old French word "disner", meaning "breakfast".

So, they ate breakfast at lunch and called it dinner.


And we still do. To add to the confusion we often call that same meal in the late afternoon 'tea'. And sometimes lunch is at midday and dinner is that same meal at 'tea time'. Some folks still have 'elevenses'. We just like to keep foreigners on their toes.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:08 am
by Matthew Ellard
May I remind everyone of the word we are all saying in English .

We "Break the Fast" as in our first meal of the day. If you come from a subsistence culture, this sentence becomes a lot more clearer in its original meaning

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/breakfast

My parents, from 1959 to 1965, gave us (4 kinder) cereal followed by meat patties, toast and orange juice at 6.30 AM, as kinder, so I'm not a good example of the last 200 years.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:24 pm
by landrew
Call it dinner, call it breakfast, call it brunch or whatever...
just make sure to call me when its ready.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:58 am
by Gord
landrew wrote:Call it dinner, call it breakfast, call it brunch or whatever...
just make sure to call me when its ready.

it's

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:29 am
by Poodle
Of course, when medieval people broke their fast, they had to drink too, but you drank the water at your peril - so ale was the normal stuff. Very civilised, these medievals.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:17 am
by TJrandom
Why are streetcars called streetcars, and aren`t all cars street cars? Unless they are cable cars... which can be streetcars too. Velly confusing...

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:09 am
by Matthew Ellard
TJrandom wrote:Why are streetcars called streetcars, and aren`t all cars street cars? Unless they are cable cars... which can be streetcars too. Velly confusing...


Gord is the etymologist, but I assume all things that "carry" are cars. ( Cable cars, boxcars on trains and so on) :D

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:52 am
by TJrandom
Matthew Ellard wrote:
TJrandom wrote:Why are streetcars called streetcars, and aren`t all cars street cars? Unless they are cable cars... which can be streetcars too. Velly confusing...


Gord is the etymologist, but I assume all things that "carry" are cars. ( Cable cars, boxcars on trains and so on) :D


Shussssh... But yes - I looked it up. Seems it comes from caries - tooth decay from using the mouth to pull great loads. :?

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:34 pm
by Monster
TJrandom wrote:Why are streetcars called streetcars, and aren`t all cars street cars? Unless they are cable cars... which can be streetcars too. Velly confusing...

English is such a mess. I had to explain these two meanings of "leave" to my students last night.

Leave a tip.
I'm leaving now.

The former means "the tip stays". The latter means "the person exits". Opposite meanings. :wah:

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 2:24 pm
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
https://www.etymonline.com/word/leave
Does have different root meanings. Quite the slippery one.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 2:52 pm
by JO 753
Sample from the Steve Wilcos show:
"how coud he do that to a 6 month yir old baby?"

I'v herd the superfluous 'yir' about a dozen timez on daytime trash TV lately.

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:29 pm
by bobbo_the_Pragmatist
That's a lot of daytime trash TV. "you know whad I'me sayin?"

Re: English multitopic

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:33 pm
by landrew
English is not the best language, but it's the only one I understand.