User talk:Benwing

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Hi Benwing,

thanks for getting involved in editing Germanic philology. Your material is good, and I'm glad to have it, but it would be good if you would check what has been done already before starting something new. For example, after a long debate we had agreed to use the word "umlaut" for i-mutation and merely note in passing that some linguists also use it for other kinds of vowel harmony. Your material on a-mutation is fine, but it belongs in an article under that title - which is where I have moved it. The point is, there are lots of kinds of vowel harmony, and lots of words that can be used for them. So the more precise usage which makes distinctions is preferable to one which says "umlaut" and other related terms are all vague words for any kind of vowel harmony. Very few linguists talk about "a-umlaut", the word umlaut was invented to describe vowel FRONTING, and there seems nothing to be gained about broadening the word to mean anything we like. Of course, variant use needs to be noted, which is why the umlaut article already contained a reference to "a-umlaut" as another possible terminology. But let's leave it at that. Besides, a-mutation can be more fully discussed in an article of it's own. Perhaps you can work that up in detail.

In a similar vein, your new article on i-mutation looks great, but it is unclear how it relates to the existing article on umlaut. Again, it looks a bit like you set to work without finding out what had already been done. We do need to think about related articles work together. --Doric Loon 20:35, 29 Apr 2005 (UTC)


I'd like to thank you for your improvements of the Old English language article. An anonymous user (203.164.184.111) deleted all of your additional information on the pronunciations of <c> and <g>, and when I asked him why, his reply was that "I deleted that information because it was confusing and I did not agree with what it said." I have no idea what he's talking about, but I did ask for clarification on his talk page, despite the fact that he's an anonymous user.

Take care. --Whimemsz 21:27, Apr 30, 2005 (UTC)

Just so you know: Talk:Old_English_language#Revert_wars...(the anon user, although using a slightly different IP, reverted the changes again, but they did give reasons on the talk page). --Whimemsz 21:14, May 9, 2005 (UTC)

Welcome to Wikipedia! Good to see more linguists around. - Mustafaa 23:34, 11 July 2005 (UTC)

Contents

Sabra and Shatila massacre[edit]

You might be interested in this edit: [1] I've requested further explanation on the Talk: page. Jayjg (talk) 16:47, 15 July 2005 (UTC)

UT[edit]

Hey, thanks for your good work on linguistics articles! I didn't realize you were studying linguistics at UT! I was a linguistics major there when I was an undergrad, 1986-90. How do you like Austin? --Angr/tɔk tə mi 05:13, 22 July 2005 (UTC)

Austin is a good place. It's getting a little too hot here but that's to be expected :) But I like cities and there's lots of activity here. What did you study for your Ph.D.? Benwing 06:18, 24 July 2005 (UTC)
My Ph.D. is in linguistics, but it's from Cornell, not U.T. By the way, if you want to change the title of a page (like changing Anglo-Frisian nasal spirant law to Ingvaeonic nasal spirant law) the best way to do it is to click on the "move" tab. Cutting and pasting isn't so good because it doesn't preserve the history. --Angr/tɔk tə mi 05:21, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for pointing that out; I didn't even realize it existed. BTW what I meant was, what was your focus within linguistics? Benwing 05:40, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
Well, for my Master's at Yale and then my first two years at Cornell my focus was on Indo-European linguistics; then I switched to phonology. My dissertation is on the prosodic phonology of the Goidelic languages. --Angr/tɔk tə mi 06:41, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Standardize article title spellings[edit]

re: Wikipedia:Standardize article title spellings: As the vote at Wikipedia:Standardize spellings clearly shows, there is pretty strong sentiment against any form of standardization of spelling on the Wikipedia, especially if it involves using the American English version of English spelling. Once your proposal is publicized, I have no doubt that it will not get anything close to a consensus vote, although it might not go down in flames in the same way that the Wikipedia:Standardize spellings proposal did. My personal opinion is that it would be much better to turn your proposal into a project for identifying missing redirects and duplicate articles, rather than rehash the issue. There are some nice tools that are already in use for some of the various maintenance projects that should make that task fairly easy to do. BlankVerse 08:55, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

Yes, I can see now that the tone of that proposal turned out the knee-jerk "I wil deefend my rite to spel inkoncistently too the deth" lobby, so I´ve removed any reference to adopting any particular spelling, since that is not the main point of my proposal. Benwing 04:04, 26 July 2005 (UTC)

Changing terminology[edit]

Benwig, I've just answered your notes on my talk page and on Talk:West Germanic strong verb. Now I see you have also moved Anglo-Frisian nasal spirant law. This is beginning to look like a re-naming frenzy, and while I don't object to these per se, I would suggest you slow down a bit. As far as the Nasal-spirant law is concerned, I have the strong impression that the term Ingvaeonic is badly out of fashion; we don't have a Wiki article on Ingvaeonic languages, for example, and every other possible variant of Germanic languages is in there. Can you point me to a RECENT authoritative source (last 30 years) which calls the law this? If so, fine. But if you DO make such a change, be sure to give credit to the previous terminology as an alternative (i.e. you should add "also called Anglo-Frisian..." to the opening sentence).--Doric Loon 07:52, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

One other thing: if you are going to change the title of an article, it is your job to fix all the links (including interwikis to other language articles). All the links to Anglo-Frisian nasal spirant law are still in place, so that's a job half-done. But most important: if you are going to move an article, you have to declare a reason on the talk page, and it is etiquette to do so first and wait for discussion before you make the move. --Doric Loon 18:47, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

"renaming frenzy" is probably a bit out of hand, since we're talking about only two or three articles. i'll add comments on the appropriate page; but does wikipedia policy really require that i change all links going in? can you point me to where it says this? Benwing 21:00, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

Sure, "frenzy" was meant jokingly. It just had the feel of an awful lot at once: it was actually four articles you wanted to relocate all at once, which is quite a disruption in a relatively small field. The main thing is, when you want to make a significant change to an article that other people are working on, seek consensus first. As far as changing links are concerned, yes, I think that is the policy; at any rate I've seen enough people being flamed for not doing it. Obviously, it has to be done, and if you take it on yourself to move the page, who else is going to tidy up afterwards? --Doric Loon 10:05, 28 July 2005 (UTC)

But having said all that, I don't want to dampen your enthusiasm. You did seek consensus on Wandel, for example, and I agree with you, and as no-one else has worked on this so far, that means you have a green light there. Same goes (with reservations) for West Germanic strong verb - but don't underestimate how much work you will have to do if you start on that one! It's a giant. Can you write about Gothic and Norse? --Doric Loon 10:41, 28 July 2005 (UTC)

I can write about Gothic and Norse, if you need. i also have various of the classic books on old english with me, which have historical info on where the various conjugations (probably) came from. Benwing 01:28, 29 July 2005 (UTC)

Your Greek edits[edit]

Please explain these to me: in your Proto-Greek language edits, why did you include sound changes in "most or all later dialects"? Surely changes that involve most but not all later dialects do not belong in a Proto-Greek article, do they? For example, you state: "loss of /n/ before /s/, with compensatory lengthening of the preceding vowel". This is not true in Aeolic: παντ-ς > παν-ς (every) > Attic πας (long α), Aeolic παις (diphthong). You have also done some edits in Greek language which, while not wrong per se, are less than 100% right: for example you have stated that the Dative is lost. This is true in Demotic, but not in Standard Modern Greek (a subtle but important distinction). Your participation in the respective talk pages will be most welcome. There is an ongoing project to rewrite and integrate all Greek-language related articles, and I'm sure your contributions will be most appreciated. Cheers. Chronographos 06:32, 29 July 2005 (UTC)

I'll contribute to the talk pages as soon as I have time, probably tomorrow; right now I'm right at my bed time. I was under the impression that Katharevousa added some complex noun forms and such, but didn't realize it still had the dative. Presumably "Standard Modern Greek" is some artificial language that tries to keep some of the older forms of Greek? How often is it used? I thought the government decision from the 1970's or so was to use dhimotiki, and that katharevousa is pretty much dead now.

So maybe we should just have this whole article on dhimotiki greek, with a separate section describing katharevousa and "standard modern greek" and other such forms rather than interleaving this data. but i don't know for sure; i'm sure you are more familiar with the greek language situation. Benwing 07:57, 29 July 2005 (UTC)

Sorry. I hope I didn't wake you up! :-) It's a little bit complicated really: what students are now being taught in compulsory schooling (ages 6-15) is modified (or standardized) Demotic (with some atrocious "standardizations" IMO!). Students do not have to learn anything else. In the Lyceum however, where most students actually go to so that they qualify for college, they are taught some Ancient Greek (or more, if they intend to sit for certain University admission exams), and the assumption is that a student who has graduated from the Lyceum (age 18) is free and sufficiently knowledgeable to incorporate elements of Katharevousa in their speech if they so wish. It's not an artificial construct, rather it is a flexible attempt to familiarize students with the whole spectrum of Greek language and literature, and let the language evolve according to its users' actual choices, and without artificial barriers. The attempt is far from perfect, but IMO it's altogether in the right direction. Indeed it is quite obvious that once Katharevousa was "abolished", the linguistic trend has been towards it rather than away from it. Feel free to participate in the talk pages whenever and to whatever extent you feel like. There is no rush and deadlines: we intend to be reforming the relevant articles gradually, and I'm sure your contributions will be valuable and most welcome. Oftentimes non-native speakers can offer better perspectives than native ones, as they may see the forest instead of the trees. Chronographos 08:51, 29 July 2005 (UTC)

Template:Book Reference[edit]

Hi, i've reverted the changes you make to the abovementioned template because

1. You failed to consult anyone regarding the change. Please note that changes made to template have wide impacts. Consultation is almost always necessary.
2. i presume you failed even to test out the template after you changed it. As a result, it is not displaying as you'd like it to be.
3. Even if it works as you want it to, i'm personally against making the year of publication a link. It serves no purpose and overloads the page with links. Linking the ISBN would suffice.

If you believe your changes are necessary, however, please discuss it at the template discussion page or some other appropriate venues (such as the Village Pump). Thanks. --Plastictv 08:15, 30 July 2005 (UTC)

OK, no problem. I certainly thought I tested the changes. I'd definitely never on purpose not do so. What may have happened is that I tested on the new things i created, Chapter Reference and such, and they have identical coding for the 'year' section, and so maybe I just assumed that it would work the same for the basic Book Reference. I looked at the old stuff I did and I still can't see what didn't go right and what I should have done -- can you explain it?

BTW I realize that you were within your rights to get angry, but you didn't, so major kudos to you. I greatly appreciate this. Benwing 08:13, 31 July 2005 (UTC)

I'm still confused about your point in #2 about it not working right. In fact, I just did a little test; I took the version that you rejected and put it back as the Book Reference template, and the year link works exactly like I wanted it to work -- the year was highlighted and clicking the link brings you to a page about the year. So what's the deal with point 2? If there's something else I messed up on, I'd really like to know, because my familiarity with these Templates is not great. Benwing 09:11, 31 July 2005 (UTC)

Instead of appearing as a link to the year, say 2001, it would appear as a link to Year. Funny though, when i just tested it worked as you'd have it to. Anyway personally i'm still against linking to the year of publication (or to the author and publisher, if you haven't conceived that idea yet). It might make everything look messy. If you do believe in it, do discuss beforehand. You can also test templates using the template sandboxes X1, X2 or X3 to save you the trouble of reverting your changes. :) --Plastictv 14:40, 31 July 2005 (UTC)

"Confusing terminology: perfective vs. perfect"[edit]

Hi, while I didn't (and don't) oppose your addition of the "Confusing terminology: perfective vs. perfect" section to Grammatical aspect, I don't much like how you've gone everywhere and added text about it to various other articles and linked back to Grammatical aspect#Confusing terminology: perfective vs. perfect. For example, I really dislike paragraph you added about it to Perfect aspect:

The aspectual nature of the English simple past is often called the aorist aspect or the perfective aspect. Note that, in this usage, "perfective aspect" is completely different from perfect aspect; unfortunately, there are usages where the two are the same. In general, there is a great deal of confusion over the term "perfective aspect"; see Grammatical aspect#Confusing terminology: perfective vs. perfect.

There are a few reasons I dislike it:

  • It's not relevant. The article is about the perfect aspect, and doesn't once mention the perfective aspect; why does it need to discuss the confusion surrounding the term "perfective aspect"?
  • It's confusing. This is partly because of its irrelevance: the reader asks himself "How does this fit in?" and does not find an apparent answer.
  • It seems non-NPOV. Why is it unfortunate that "perfective" is sometimes used as a synonym for "perfect"? Maybe the unfortunate thing is that some people try to draw a distinction between the two synonyms. (I'm actually inclined to agree with your presentation, but it violates Wikipedia style.)
  • It seems strained. Why is "completely different" in bold text? You sound like you're trying to convince the reader as much as inform him; and besides, bold text has a special meaning in Wikipedia, in that it's used to mark an article's names when they first appear in the text.
  • This is a minor thing, but "perfect aspect" shouldn't be linked in that paragraph, because it makes it bold rather than a link (since it's the current article), which looks confusing.

I plan to modify the text at perfect aspect, but I've noticed that you've added similar text elsewhere, and would ask that you modify it yourself. One suggestion: perhaps rather than regarding the complication as being the confusion between "perfect" and "perfective," you should regard the complication as being the multiple meanings of "perfective"? I think that that could be explained much more easily.

Thanks for reading,
- Ruakh 16:06, 7 August 2005 (UTC)

Proto-Germanic[edit]

Thanks for clarifying your point of view. I think the text is acceptable now.--Wiglaf 08:59, 15 August 2005 (UTC)

Pronunciation[edit]

Hi Benwing. Seeing as you are a linguistics scholar, and a significant contributor to matters Greek, I was hoping that you could help me out. My user name, Xiphon, is very close to an Ancient Greek word, as I understand it. But how does one pronounce it? Bearing in mind that I am unskilled in the phonetic alphabet that is. Would it be akin to the "z" in english, followed by the pronoun "I"? As in zIfon? Thanks--Xiphon 07:02, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

TfD nomination of Template:Chapter reference[edit]

Template:Chapter reference has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at Wikipedia:Templates for deletion#Template:Chapter reference. Thank you. Phil | Talk 10:14, 8 November 2005 (UTC)

TfD nomination of Template:Chapter reference link[edit]

Template:Chapter reference link has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at Wikipedia:Templates for deletion#Template:Chapter reference link. Thank you. Phil | Talk 10:14, 8 November 2005 (UTC)

Ancient Greek phonology[edit]

Hello, I see that you are interested in Ancient Greek and that you are a professional linguist. Do you think you could give us a hand in improving the article Ancient Greek phonology? One editor, Thrax, poromotes the idea that Ancient Greek (5th century BC) was pronounced the same like modern Greek, and that beta was pronounced [v] even in Homeric Greek. Although all other editors disagree with Thrax, none of us has enough expertise to do a thorough job in editing the article. Thanks, Andreas 15:53, 27 November 2005 (UTC)

Iran naming dispute[edit]

Please explain why you added in the dispute tags in the article's talk page. AucamanTalk 20:53, 27 January 2006 (UTC)

Old French[edit]

Just a note of thanks for your helpful additions to that article. Smerdis of Tlön 15:06, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

Old English weak verbs[edit]

Hi Benwing, you're a bit of an expert on Old English, aren't you? Any chance you could look at the article Germanic weak verb and do some work on the section "historical conjugations"? I would think Old English can stand here as exemplary for all the early Germanic languages, so we wouldn't need a full description of Old High German and all the others, but at least one medieval language does need to be described properly. --Doric Loon 21:25, 19 May 2006 (UTC)

_______________

Hello Benwing. I was reading the article on Germanic strong verbs, and I think I found a very small error. It is in the section on English, under the heading "Great Vowel Shift". I thought you would know whether the following sentence: "Elimination of almost all verb inflection in strong verbs, except for the third-person singular present ending -s (and the second-person ending "-(e)st", when used)," should really say "Elimination of almost all verb inflection in weak verbs, except for the third-person singular present ending -s (and the second-person ending "-(e)st", when used)." I am pretty sure "there was a simple mis-typing, when this sentence was written. Thank you. Janice Vian, Ph.D. (talk) 17:50, 18 February 2014 (UTC)

South Arabian[edit]

Are you sure regarding their phonology? Consonant-wise, perhaps to a degree (wrt to lateral fricatives, yes, at least), but I've generally seen very divergent phonologies from MSA as compared to the rest of Semitic. Note that South Semitic (both Ge'ez and the various dialects of Old SA) preserved lateral fricatives, too, yet were generally more conservative on vowels (and to a degree consonants, though interdentals & ghayin were lost in Ge'ez). — ዮም | (Yom) | TalkcontribsEthiopia 07:32, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

that was fast! no, i suspect you are right. it's been awhile since i looked at any references on MSA and i don't have any handy. i remembered a quote about this ("The World's Major Languages", p. 665), but i just looked it up and it refers to Epigraphic South Arabian, not the modern dialects. however, i've certainly read in various places that the modern South Arabian dialects are *overall* considered more conservative than the old ones. i suggest you rewrite this and add some more info, since it sounds like you have more experience here than i do.

Benwing 07:38, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

btw the quote reads "Arabic preserves Proto-Semitic phonology almost perfectly (Epigraphic South Arabian is even more conservative), except for Proto-Semitic *p > f and Proto-Semitic *ś > s."

Benwing 07:41, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

actually ... please see these links:

[2] [3]

it is claimed here that MSA has identical phonology to Proto-Semitic except for p > f.

Benwing 08:15, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

note that the above quote about "Proto-Semitic *ś > s" is wrong, so i wouldn't trust the quote in its entirety.

Benwing 08:19, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

West Australian Lakes[edit]

If you assume anything, you're lost! Check the wars on the subject of the word Java as a disambigatuation issue on wiki, and either weep at the xenophobia and "-centrism" of some of your fellow country persons (and limited geographic knowledge) or maybe smile instead  :)  ??? Lake Carnegie like many of the "mapped" lakes shows up on some maps of Western Australia, despite its ephemeral nature. The issue of whether one place or item in the us is better known than one in another country can bring out some particularly virulent responses so take care!  :) SatuSuro 12:07, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

And looking at your linguistic prowess, "insha allah" you dont offend local knowledge in other cultures or times as well ! :) SatuSuro 12:11, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

i don't think i was being xenophobic or ethnocentric; my judgment was based on the length of the respective articles, on the # of people in the vicinity of these two places, and on the ephemeral nature of the australian lake.

also, be careful heaping blame on americans for lack of foreign knowledge; this is a common stereotype but in my experience, people from other countries are just as bad. Benwing 02:46, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

(A) I wasnt accusing you specifically of being either xenophobic or ethnocentric - I was pointing to the way the Java debate was conducted by some who didnt even know where it was - the island that is. - you clearly were weighing experience of being a citizen of the us comparing a location in another country - that could be a problematic distinction - not necessarily connected to anything to do with being xeno or ethno (mind you Austin and Dallas have issues don't they?)
(B) Hey meant in good humour :)  ? wikipedia seems to be full of a very large number of xenophobes from all countries on the planet :) - some with more of a sense of the ridiculous :)
As for following up on Java - the disamgig war was conducted very much on individuals own limitations of experience and knowledge, and determining relevance/notoriety/popularity against the subjective limitations to me reminds me how we cannot really claim any one section of local knowledge against another... I have happened to live in Tasmania and Java - and the issues from having lived in those places became more acute Australian regional rivalries - Best Wishes SatuSuro 04:06, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

no worries. Benwing 04:23, 30 July 2006 (UTC) thanks and sorry for being so verbose, some poor friends have to archive quickly :) SatuSuro 04:33, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

Romanization, etc.[edit]

The piece on romanization in Standard Mandarin is now revised (anything that was in the "Romanization" section that was not incorrect, has been included in the revision). Also, on the basis of the ease of reading and the simplicity of writing it was better to deal with the "non-Chinese" before the "Chinese" in the two parts. Best to you. Lindsay658 07:59, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

Vulgar Latin[edit]

Hi, this is FA Review, on the verge of going into FARC. We wonder whether you're able to help reference the text. Tony 08:06, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

Strong pass[edit]

Thanks for the Strong pass article! I tweaked it a bit, but it was a great start. I assume you discovered Wikiproject Contract Bridge so if you wish to join, you're warmly welcome. Regards, Duja 08:20, 5 September 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for the heads up. I didn't actually know about the project. It's been a long time since I played bridge, but I definitely have a weak spot for forcing pass systems :) ... they make life much more interesting. Benwing 02:17, 6 September 2006 (UTC)

South Arabian -> South Arabic[edit]

You left a response on the Old South Arabian talk page 2 months ago in which you said that all sources you have seen say South Arabian, not South Arabic. But you didn't list any sources, which I would like for you to do. You also said you cannot view the Encarta entry. I have Encarta and searched for both terms and South Arabic has a lot more hits, while most of the hits for South Arabian do not refer to the language.

The following is from the Encarta article on Semitic languages "The South Peripheral group consists of the South Arabic dialects, now spoken in parts of the southern Arabian Peninsula (and in ancient times by peoples such as the Minaeans and Sabaeans)"...

Here are other sources [4][5] [6][7][8][9]--Inahet 00:57, 18 September 2006 (UTC)

African Languages: An Introduction (Heine and Nurse) p. 79 "South Semitic comprises South Arabian and Ethio-Semitic"

A Guide to the World's Languages (Ruhlen) p. 90 "the Southern group has two (South Arabian, Ethiopic)"

An Introduction to the Languages of the World (Lyovin) p. 188 "In addition, the so-called South Arabian languages (not the same as Arabic!) also belong to this subbranch"

The World's Major Languages (Comrie) p. 655 "(i) Epigraphic South Arabian ... is known only from short inscriptions written in a consonantal script. ... (ii) Modern South Arabian, a group of non-Arabic languages ..."

The Arabic Language (Versteegh) p. 10 "Epigraphic South Arabian was the language of the Sabaean, Minaean and Qatabanian inscriptions ... The modern South Arabian dialects, such as Mehri, probably go back to spoken varieties of these languages ..."

Every one of these is a modern book written by a linguist (rather than encyclopedia articles and non-technical articles, as you've quoted). Benwing 05:37, 19 September 2006 (UTC)

Bene Gesserit OR removal[edit]

I'm glad someone finally had the gumption needed to take care of that!

I had a look at some of your other pages; noticed & removed some vandalism to Injunctive mood.

Cheers! --SandChigger 15:49, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

Lancet surveys of mortality...[edit]

I've noticed your concern in the talkpage for this article; somehow, the user Timeshifter has been able to keep his, possibly, biased or flawed information; one user has even been blocked, while trying to correct his edits. Perhaps it's none of my business, but if biased, POV info is on the article, it should be promptly removed. I will try to help, if all possible, and I beseech you so you could, perhaps, do the same, if you wish. BishopTutu 16:51, 7 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes, I agree. he shows a strong tendency towards edit warring and "wikilawyering" (using the established rules to intimidate others into accepting his POV). he seems not to understand or be willing to accept the NPOV rules or established principles concerning encyclopedic style. unfortunately he also has more willingness to invest energy in POV'ing than i do in correcting his POV. i'm going to see if i can find another editor who is more willing to fight him. Benwing 00:05, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

Lancet surveys of mortality before and after the 2003 invasion of Iraq[edit]

I don't understand why this is an encyclopedia article at all; an article about two Lancet surveys? Jayjg (talk) 03:19, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

Well, these surveys are quoted very often in the media. the media focuses quite intensively (maybe even obsessively) on the number of us casualties, and the estimates of iraqi casualties often go alongside. usually either these surveys or the reports of the Iraq Body Count group, or both, are given. the difficulty here is that these two sources differ by more than a factor of ten in their claims. that said, i do think the entries are far too long; but i found it impossible to shorten them. Benwing 03:28, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
btw i don't know the proper protocol for these discussions; whose page does it take place on, or does it ping-pong back and forth? Benwing 03:30, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

They can ping-pong back and forth. I don't really know what to do about it either, I just think a lengthy article about two surveys is ridiculous. Jayjg (talk) 17:48, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

Survey concerning Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam lead sentence.[edit]

Talk:Cat_Stevens#Survey: Ordering_of_names_within_lead_sentence

As an active editor at Cat Stevens, your input is requested for the purpose of establishing consensus. Italiavivi 00:44, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

ArabDIN characters[edit]

I noticed that you have added a number of ArabDIN characters to the Arabic grammar page. My browser refuses to display either the alif or the 'ain characters (as transliterated into Latin letters). It's MS Internet Explorer 6.0. Any ideas? I'd like to fix it, if possible, and write an appropriate box or template or whatever so that others with this problem can fix their browsers. Thanks. Cbdorsett 12:14, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

I dunno. I'm using MS IE 6 as well and it looks OK to me. what do you see instead? do you see square boxes? does it occur *everywhere* on the page or only in the places that i added something? i did add some fonts at one point, which made some unusual characters (e.g. Ethiopic) display better, but it should work without these. Try using the IPA or Unicode templates. Benwing 00:47, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

Timeshifter again[edit]

Hi Benwing, I note your discussion above with BishopTutu. I have tried editing these pages and have run afoul of Timeshifter before. He does pretty much what you describe, selectively conscripting (and imv distorting) wiki guidelines to intimidate me and muddy the waters for anyone else readign the talk pages. In the past I have not had an account, and my IP changes from time to time by itself. He's now begun using this to describe me as a "vandal" for not going along with his control and censorship of these pages, using the IP as his excuse. So I've created an account here so he can't do that. It's a shame that editors should be pressured into these things because of fraudulent accusations of "vandalism" but that's another story.

The latest 'edit war' initiated by Timeshifter began here: (cur) (last) 23:13, 16 January 2007 74.73.39.219 (Talk) (lancet letters about graph)

That was me adding new information from letters published in the Lancet journal which indicate that the main graph that has been sitting atop the Lancet page for many months is inaccurate and misleading. I've added this information, along with links to the articles in the Lancet. Timeshifter then suddenly deletes the whole graph (which has been there for months), along with my new sourced information about its errors. I put it back. He deletes. Etc. Etc. His reasoning has shifted several times. First he says he deleted it because the graph is now known to be erroneous, and because the Lancet authors have conceded these errors it has to be removed. But it's only know because of MY edit! How will anyone know of these errors if he keeps censoring it? But that's the point isn't it? He doesn't want people to know. Next he claimed he had to remove it because it violated WP:RS, on the grounds that the Lancet website requires an account to access the articles. That was bogus. Then he just keeps shifting the excuses and keeps deleting it.

Now he's accusing me of "vandalism" and threatening to have me blocked for 3RR violations, for the crime of putting back sourced material he keeps censoring. From the comments above I can see that you seem to know exactly what's going on here with this Timeshifter, so I'm wondering if you can step in here.Seigfried4220 14:33, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

Style guidelines for sound pages[edit]

Hello, Benwing. Recently CyborgTosser and I discussed and came up with proposed style guidelines for all the individual consonant and vowel pages wherein the Occurrence section would have a table rather than a bulleted list. You can see the discussion here. So far nobody else has commented on the proposed guidelines and I believe it's safer to get a solid consensus before undergoing the work to change so many pages. If you could comment on what has been proposed, even if it's a simple yay or nay, this would help us out quite a bit. Thank you very much. Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɻɛ̃ⁿdˡi] 06:43, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Hey Ben,[edit]

I'm not chasing you outside of that talk or anything, but I really felt insulted by your coments (three times now) there. Look, let's start on the right foot, if possible: You ask many questions, I'll try to respond to the basic: Time (as you know better) is not always proportional to abstand. Greek, Koine Greek, Ancient Greek (and most probably XMK too), are mutually intelligible to the extent that Britannica says: no other language has been documented to have such continuity, and that Pericles' Greek to mine, are "recognizably one and the same". Now, according to the three theories for XMK, it was rather close to Greek. Furthermore, it was later absorbed within the language I now speak (the one the Bible was written in for the first time).

Now there are numerous examples I can give you, where Macedonian (S) irredentists/pseudoscientists etc claim that their language descends from XMK (also cited by Danforth in the article), which is absolutely malakies per all linguists. Feel free to give a browse to Macedonia (terminology), which includes the same 2 sentences with the same sources, and has become WP:FA. I'm the main contributor there, but that part, wasn't written by me, or by any other Greek; plus it passed a storm of hundreds of objections in the WP:FAC (here. So, this all, is scrutinized to the last detail, and if not relevant for the "dispute" article, then I really don't know where it would be more relevant. That's why I removed your tag. NikoSilver 01:02, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

In case you were wondering which comments of yours enraged me, I copy them below:

  • someone ignorant of linguistics (but probably having a pov to push) put this claim in without understanding the reality
  • unlike you, i have no axe to grind or pov to push
  • btw it seems you really have an axe to grind.

I'm really sorry you feel that way, but even if I did, that's definitely WP:NPA, so let's be WP:CIVIL. OK? NikoSilver 01:18, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Seigfried4220 (74.73.39.219) deleted your material from template.[edit]

Hi Benwing. You added some good info to this template: Template:Summary of casualties of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. See this revision difference.

Seigfried4220 (74.73.39.219) just deleted some of it with this edit summary: "deleted opinionated assertion about what the differences reflect". Here is the revision difference.

The sentence he deleted was this one: "The differences reflect differing methodologies as well as differing definitions of the types of death counted."

I like that sentence which is why I left it in when you first put it in. It is a good, simple, NPOV, and necessary introduction to complex casualty stats. I have deleted other info of yours, so I am not kissing your butt. Just pointing out how Seigfried4220 operates. --Timeshifter 06:00, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

I deleted this sentence because it is an opinion that that is all the differences reflect. They could reflect quite a few other things, and could even have very little to do with differing methodologies or different definitions or types of deaths. For example, if you look at the criticisms section of the Lancet study page, many believe most of the difference between the Lancet study and all others is that the Lancet study is wrong. I think opinions about what the differences reflect should be left up to readers. If you want a statement saying these studies use differing methodologies and include different types of deaths, that would be fine. But implying that this explains the *difference* in the figures is an opinion.Seigfried4220 06:08, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
So we get to the root of the problem. Seigfried4220 wrote: "many believe most of the difference between the Lancet study and all others is that the Lancet study is wrong." And? So what does that have to do with Benwing's sentence? It is a big stretch to read as much as you read into Benwing's sentence. You screwed up, because you thought I wrote the sentence. LOL. Then you write: "If you want a statement saying these studies use differing methodologies and include different types of deaths, that would be fine." That is exactly what Benwing's sentence said. --Timeshifter 06:18, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
My reasoning above stands regardless of who wrote the sentence. There is debate about what the difference reflects. Saying the studies use different methods is not the same as saying that is what the difference in their figures reflects. I doubt Benwing wants you and me taking up space on his talk page with more bickering so I'll not respond to you here anymore.Seigfried4220 07:00, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Sorry to embarrass you further, but Benwing's sentence is still innocuous. --Timeshifter 07:24, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Hey guys. Seigfried, i see your point. my intention was that "differing methodologies" could include the possibility that the way the lancet authors collected their data was flawed. but i see now that this isn't quite the right word here; maybe "different methods of collecting the data" or something more general would be better. i think it might be useful to mention that the methodologies are different -- the fact that one is based on counting and the other on extrapolation could be useful for someone to form their opinion about the validity of one or the other study. but i'm not attached to this particular sentence. Timeshifter, if you want the sentence in then maybe you should reword it so it addresses Seigfried's concerns. (however, looking at the current template i see that it's already stated that the methodologies and types of deaths counted are different.) Benwing 23:56, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

"highly disputed" could be added. It is a common phrase on wikipedia pages. The sentence being discussed is not essential since some of the differing methodologies and types of deaths counted are mentioned in the template already. --Timeshifter 01:07, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

incorrect?[edit]

What is it you're saying is incorrect, in this edit? Each member of family of continuous uniform distributions is the uniform distribution on some interval [ab]. As a and b vary, the distribution changes. Are you suggesting that family of distributions, parameterized by the two numbers a, b, is an exponential family? Michael Hardy 00:12, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

OK, I've replied to your comments at talk:exponential family. You've missed the point with amazing completeness. Michael Hardy 00:20, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

from learnportuguese[edit]

Hi! :) I'm really interested in the Portuguese language. I found your page through the talk page of an article on Brazilian Portuguese. Just put a watch on my user page and talk page if you want. I am American, by the way. Um, if i get this right, Quero aprender Português porque quero ser jornalista (for radio). :) learnportuguese 23:07, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

AfD nomination of World's largest universities[edit]

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An article that you have been involved in editing, World's largest universities, has been listed for deletion. If you are interested in the deletion discussion, please participate by adding your comments at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/World's largest universities. Thank you. GreenJoe 00:25, 3 October 2007 (UTC)

Speedy deletion of Template:Book reference link[edit]

A tag has been placed on Template:Book reference link requesting that it be speedily deleted from Wikipedia. This has been done under section T3 of the criteria for speedy deletion, because it is a deprecated or orphaned template. After seven days, if it is still unused and the speedy deletion tag has not been removed, the template will be deleted.

If the template is intended to be substituted, please feel free to remove the speedy deletion tag and please consider putting a note on the template's page indicating that it is substituted so as to avoid any future mistakes (<noinclude>{{transclusionless}}</noinclude>).

Thanks. --MZMcBride (talk) 02:18, 22 February 2008 (UTC)


Rathole tunnel[edit]

Nuvola apps important yellow.svg

A proposed deletion template has been added to the article Rathole tunnel, suggesting that it be deleted according to the proposed deletion process. All contributions are appreciated, but this article may not satisfy Wikipedia's criteria for inclusion, and the deletion notice should explain why (see also "What Wikipedia is not" and Wikipedia's deletion policy). You may prevent the proposed deletion by removing the {{dated prod}} notice, but please explain why you disagree with the proposed deletion in your edit summary or on its talk page. Also, please consider improving the article to address the issues raised. Even though removing the deletion notice will prevent deletion through the proposed deletion process, the article may still be deleted if it matches any of the speedy deletion criteria or it can be sent to Articles for Deletion, where it may be deleted if consensus to delete is reached. If you agree with the deletion of the article, and you are the only person who has made substantial edits to the page, please add {{db-author}} to the top of Rathole tunnel. neonwhite user page talk 19:30, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

Albanian pronunciation[edit]

Here is a little response to your question on the Albanian Talk Page: First, the letter is ç not ch. For some dialects ç and q have merged and xh and gj have merged. Some dialects of Albanian as well have a slight aspiration to the voiceless stops. Honestly, the palatal stops do not sound that much different from the postalveolar affricates anyway. I could barely tell the difference. Also, the r (single r) in Albanian varies a bit by dialect and depending on its position and following vowel. It isn't always a strict alveolar flap. Regards. Azalea pomp (talk) 08:51, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Name change for "Iraqi Health Ministry casualty survey" page[edit]

I was hoping you could take a look at a point i've made on the discussion page here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Iraqi_Health_Ministry_casualty_survey

Changing a title of a page seems like a big deal so I was hoping to get others to agree first. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Stradov (talkcontribs) 23:56, 5 March 2009 (UTC)


Thanks for changing it Benwing. I've tried to add some material actually on the study rather than just a bunch of criticisms which is basically all it had before. Hopefully it doesn't all get butchered by you-know-who.Stradov (talk) 10:07, 7 March 2009 (UTC)


I agree with you[edit]

Hello Benwing, I just wanted to let you know that I agree with all of the points you made on Talk:Israel_and_the_apartheid_analogy#undue_weight_and_plans_to_fix_it. I am in favor of all of the changes that you have suggested.WackoJackO 23:57, 10 March 2009 (UTC)

Hi[edit]

Thanks for XEmacs and wow you speak a lot of languages.--75.2.19.152 (talk) 12:40, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

You're welcome. Benwing (talk) 06:13, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

Shanghainese tone[edit]

BW, we don't write something, then say it's wrong with a "see below" for the correct description. We certainly don't edit war over it when someone catches it; accusing them of edit warring over a single edit shows that you're not to be taken seriously.

As for Shanghainese, it simple tone system is not due to the lack of the MC tone split. That's true of Wu in general, but Shanghainese is simple in comparison to Wu. What makes it simple is the partial merger of the 3 tones of MC, and the development of word rather than syllable tone. The articles cover that; your "more accurate" addition misses the mark. kwami (talk) 01:44, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

PIE nouns[edit]

Thank for your tremendous work with the declension tables! Does Ringe (2006) really call *mḗh₁n̥s a "Narten root noun"? Sounds logical, but I've never heard "Narten" applied to nouns, only to the type of present tense. --ἀνυπόδητος (talk) 15:08, 1 May 2010 (UTC)

Re: Verb tables[edit]

You have new message/s Hello. You have a new message at Anypodetos's talk page.

I took the liberty of changing "is pronounced as" to "becomes" because we don't really know what anything was pronounced in PIE. Feel free to change it back if I got you wrong. --ἀνυπόδητος (talk) 08:31, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Nomination for deletion of Template:Section:Chapter reference after author[edit]

Ambox warning pn.svgTemplate:Section:Chapter reference after author has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for discussion page. Thank you. -— Gadget850 (Ed) talk 23:11, 25 May 2010 (UTC)

Nomination for deletion of Template:Section:Book reference after author[edit]

Ambox warning pn.svgTemplate:Section:Book reference after author has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for discussion page. Thank you. -— Gadget850 (Ed) talk 23:12, 25 May 2010 (UTC)

You are now a Reviewer[edit]

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Hello. Your account has been granted the "reviewer" userright, allowing you to review other users' edits on certain flagged pages. Pending changes, also known as flagged protection, is currently undergoing a two-month trial scheduled to end 15 August 2010.

Reviewers can review edits made by users who are not autoconfirmed to articles placed under pending changes. Pending changes is applied to only a small number of articles, similarly to how semi-protection is applied but in a more controlled way for the trial. The list of articles with pending changes awaiting review is located at Special:OldReviewedPages.

For the guideline on reviewing, see Wikipedia:Reviewing. Being granted reviewer rights doesn't change how you can edit articles even with pending changes. The general help page on pending changes can be found here, and the general policy for the trial can be found here.

If you do not want this userright, you may ask any administrator to remove it for you at any time. —DoRD (talk) 22:44, 11 July 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for expanding the article on Egyptian Arabic significantly![edit]

I'm just sending you this message to show my appreciation for your efforts in expanding the article on Egyptian Arabic. I remember reading it a couple of years ago, and your and Mahmudmasri's contributions have surprised me. Continue your great work! :D I'll be adding new stuff as well and help finding references to the article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Neqitan (talkcontribs) 03:02, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

Nomination for deletion of Template:Section:Author link and year[edit]

Ambox warning pn.svgTemplate:Section:Author link and year has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for discussion page. Thank you. -— Gadget850 (Ed) talk 22:07, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

Nomination for deletion of Template:Section:Author link[edit]

Ambox warning pn.svgTemplate:Section:Author link has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for discussion page. Thank you. -— Gadget850 (Ed) talk 22:08, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

Your recent edits to Gibbs sampling[edit]

Nice work! Quantling (talk) 13:25, 22 September 2010 (UTC)

I modified your edits to the Gibbs Sampling article section on variations to more sterilely discuss benefits and costs. If you think I've done it wrong, please further edit. —Quantling (talk | contribs) 18:14, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Hidden Markov model[edit]

Your latest edits to Hidden Markov model are very professional looking. If it's an original write up by you, then very good! However, if it is more or less verbatim from some source, then unfortunately it has to go. (Perhaps you already know the Wikipedia:Non-free content rule, but I would be remiss if I didn't double check.) Thanks again for your quality changes to this and other articles. Quantling (talk) 12:31, 28 September 2010 (UTC)

Some things are inherently plural[edit]

This is worse than moving The Beatles to The Beatle. One can use the noun "Beatle" in the singular, as when one says Paul McCartney is a former Beatle. But there can be no such thing as just one exchangeable random variable. Michael Hardy (talk) 04:37, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Your comment about "exchangeable random variable" doesn't make much sense to me. Logically, if you can have a "sequence of X's", then you can have an "X" which is sensibly defined as "one of a sequence of X's". Certainly, whether or not you think singular "exchangeable random variable" is incorrect, you understand what is meant, and if you do a search on "exchangeable random variable" you will see plenty of examples in the singular with exactly the semantics I just described. In other words, whether or not you prescriptively think such usage is "incorrect", descriptively speaking it obviously exists and is well defined, so there seems little point to me in insisting that the Wikipedia article be named according to the plural when the standard practice is to use the singular whenever it exists. Benwing (talk) 05:33, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Looking at the first several google hits, I'm failing to find what you say is there. Can you point to one or more specific pages on which you find that usage? Your comment that starts with "logically" is specious. Two say two or more random variables are exchangeable is to assert that a certain relationship among them exists. How can that apply to just one random variable in a way that's not vacuous? Michael Hardy (talk) 17:32, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Newish article[edit]

Please see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Statistics#rich get richer which relates to the article you started at The rich get richer (statistics). Melcombe (talk) 09:21, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Normal distribution[edit]

Hi Benwing, sorry for my earlier criticism of your edits in the Normal distribution article. I see that the lead now became better owing to you.

As for the article itself, it has been one year now since I've been editing and watching it; ever since there was a suggestion (see Archive 3) to push it towards the GA status. The article went a long way since then, and is now much closer than it used to be. Currently it is lacking thorough referencing, and maybe in the quality of prose (something I’m not good at fixing, not being a native speaker) — particularly the “Occurrence” section is not as clean as it should be. I wonder if you feel up to the challenge to help with these issues? It would be nice to have a GA article on a topic which is actually important (not the stupid ∞ monkey theorem). // stpasha » 23:48, 11 October 2010 (UTC)

Bayesian stats[edit]

Hi, you appear to think that I'm trying to remove information about Bayesian statistics from the confidence interval page because of some philosophical belief. This is not the case. My general view is that Bayesian statistics is correct and frequentist statistics is a good fallback plan when the Bayesian statistics are too hard to calculate or are strongly influenced by the prior despite the desire for an uninformative prior.

What I am trying to do is remove statements that are incorrect or misleading. My point on the talk page is that you can not use bayesian statistics to make statements like, "the probability that the Rangers will win the 2010 ALCS is 0.6". You are very careful and do a great job of not saying this on the talk page. On the article some of your edits imply that you can make statements like this. An example:

In the above poll, for example, one common-sense interpretation might be that we are 95% confident that the actual number of voters intending to vote for the party in question is between 36% to 44%. Although this interpretation may be a reasonable point of departure in understanding confidence intervals, it is technically incorrect (note, however, that it is similar to the type of reasoning that can be employed with Bayesian credible intervals)

I'm sure you know what you mean, but a reader might be excused form thinking that Bayesian statistics allows you to make a statement like, "There is a 95% probability that between 36% and 44% of the voters want to vote for the party in question." But the actual statement that you can make is, "conditional on agreeing that without the poll we would think that [blah blah blah] and on the data in this poll, the probability [blah blah blah]." It is as important a distinction as the point being made about the confidence interval at that exact part of the article, so I think it only makes sense to compare the two on equal footing.

Your recent edit was much better, but still washes too much away in the "introduces its own subtleties." text. While I realize that you know what is meant by it adding an element of subjectivity, that doesn't mean that the reader will.

But to get into the subtlety of Bayesian statistics right there in the middle of the middle of this article that isn't about Bayesian statistics seems inappropriate and unfocused. I just don't see how to do it. If you can find a way (and I'm open to that, you are a very good writer) I'm fine with it. Otherwise, I think it makes more sense lower down in the article or in its own article. 018 (talk) 15:19, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

I was actually just trying to explain that I'm not pushing some Bayesian or freqnetist POV, I'm just trying to make the article clear. Please don't accuse me of pushing a POV, if you do you are wasting time and just plain wrong.
The point is that we are really being very precise with what some might view as a downfalls in the freqentist perspective, so I think it doesn't make sense to be any less precise in the downfalls in our writing about the Bayesian view. You wrote on my talk, "Rather than constantly reverting my changes because you find some small fault in them, please try to be constructive and figure out how better to express the basic issue!" I actually trying to address exactly this point above--I don't see how you can include the Bayesian thoroughly (which I think is essential) and keep the article clear and on topic. So I'm saying that it is fundamentally something that just can't go there in a good article (that I see). The only way I see to make it work is to have a seperate section--but that is already there. If you want to include it in that section, I'd suggest you start an RFC. I'd be very interested to see where it goes. 018 (talk) 15:27, 20 October 2010 (UTC)
I'm saying that when you present Pr(A|B,C) you had better make sure that the B and C are in the statement. Your suggestion that they are implied is the error in Bayesian statistics akin to thinking that you can reverse probabilities in freqentist statistics (i.e. go from Pr(A|B) to Pr(B|A) as you can in Bayesian statistics). I don't understand why you would want to make one error when pointing out that you shouldn't make the other. 018 (talk) 03:22, 21 October 2010 (UTC)
First, thank you for continuing to talk. I appreciate that if you have a strong prior, Bayesian statistics makes a lot more sense than frequentist statistics (having been there before). However, I can't make any sense of the comment you made about frequentist statistics having a particular prior. There are not priors in frequentist statistics. Also, if we are going to talk about the article specifically (rather than how we are editing or our biases) can we move it back to the article space? I'd move the part of your comment that is relevant there myself but I've noticed that many editors find that jarring. Would you like to repurpose your text on the page (perhaps in a blockquote)? I will tell you my two objections now though. (1) It is WAY too long to be an aside in the middle of a paragraph who's topic sentence doesn't say anything about Bayesian in it, (2) I don't understand why having the two sections that compare/contrast to Bayesian don't give a sufficient amount of information. Generally, I like the current version where the fact of an alternative with different assumptions and conclusions is mentioned without getting into the long amount of text required for a compare/contrast outside of the sections used for compare/contrast. 018 (talk) 15:36, 21 October 2010 (UTC)
Again, I'd rather talk about specific edits on the talk page. However, you brought up many other issues. One is, why not be Bayesian all the time and use non-informative priors? The answer is two fold. In the case of the poll, the usual non-informative prior is a beta(1,1) But This prior is actually (slightly) informative and there are cases where it matters (usually low n) and can even mater a lot. (as in people get red in the face arguing about (1,1) vs (0+delta,0+delta) which looks bizarre as a prior but the posteriors look very different than when it is (1,1) and n is small.) If you model something that could be poisson distributed with a beta, then the number of successes could be very small even with n is large and, again, the prior matters. Then you start to think about what the prior should say... lots of chin scratching. In the mean time the frequentist down the hall has got an answer that doesn't involve a five page description of priors, the choices involved, the meaning of those choices, and a sensitivity analysis. What's worse, he has about the same answer as you, and he didn't have 3 pages describing the calculus of the posterior.
Now imagine a regulatory environment for, say cars, where the regulator has to be sure too many fatal accidents don't happen. So the regulator forces designers to test their cars and meet some threshold. Here, the frequentist view is totally fine, it has to do with repetition of the experiment and the many manufactures do the same experiment for every car, every model year--so the regulator is totally fine using some large n approximation and a frequentist approach.
Finally, I'll point out that voice recognition software that I've interacted with is bad to almost minimally functional and Bayesian assumptions may be getting in the way i.e. if you assume markovity of words then the words that have low probability communicate the most to the listener because they have the highest information content, but are also the ones that the classifier is most likely to get wrong... so is the Bayesian analysis helping or hurting? Maybe getting lots of the words wrong but the really important words right would be better than getting the low information words right and the high information words wrong. In an extreme case, imagine a classifier for spoken words that puts text an air traffic controller says on an airplane pilots display. Almost always the controller will be saying, "everything is fine." so the prior of that will be really high. But, say, sometimes they issue a dire warning to East traveling aircraft to dive (and the opposite to the West traveling aircraft), so that will have a low prior. You can imagine that is a bad situation. Now, say the East traveling aircraft is too low to the ground and a controller says, for the first time ever, that an East traveling aircraft should climb... all of a sudden everything hangs on the prior that somebody threw in there 20 years ago and thought was "uninformative." In addition, you already know that if my bank can't understand me saying numbers into a phone (uniform prior) that there is no way this locution gets translated correctly and the pilot who is too low to the ground is told to dive. Again, if the programer thought to include "altitude relative to the ground" in the posterior, then this might work out okay, but if they didn't then you will assign a (subjective) probability that is absolutely wrong. 018 (talk) 15:41, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, I thought I said before, I'd rather talk about the article on the article talk page. I also think I agree with Melcombe, so convincing the two of us together should be about as easy as convincing just one of us.
Part of the problem is that I think our conflict is irreducible. I don't want lots of yamering OR anything that doesn't give enough detail about alternatives in the middle of a section that doesn't regard Bayesian statistics in the first place. The intersection of those two is either a wikilink or the empty set. You appear disappointed with a wikilink, and I think Melcombe and I agree that it isn't the best solution. I also disagree that Bayesian statistics make up so much of the article that it deserves a paragraph in the lead. The lead should be a definition and a short summary of the article. Including something that is just not a big part of the article doesn't make sense.
If you really want to push the point (which I think would just be a waste of time given the outcome Melcombe already mentioned at statistical inference) I think you should do an RFC. 018 (talk) 23:31, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
I didn't say our conflict is irreducible. I said "I think our conflict is irreducible." I basically made this same point when this started but I'll point out (in the language of this discussion) that just because a subjective probability is almost one doesn't mean that an even in the complement of the event won't happen. In particular, I think you are a very good writer and so you could surprise me.
However, when two editors agree that an edit your are proposing isn't a good one, then there is no consensus to include it (again, I'm open to the possibility that you might make some great suggestion. I'll add there is also the possibility that other editors show up and agree with you, or that we have misread Melcombe). That is how consensus editing work--sometime the consensus is against you and you just have to move on (I am familiar with this because this happens to me often). If you can't move on and think that you could get consensus if more editors joined the discussion, you can explicitly ask more editors to join the discussion via an WP:RFC. 018 (talk) 17:14, 23 October 2010 (UTC)

Pronunciation of Leibniz[edit]

I've responded to your comments on Talk:Gottfried Leibniz#Pronunciation. I should have done a better job explaining in the first place, since it seems to be a common mistake by English speakers with some knowledge of German pronunciation to assume that it is pronounced [ˈlaɪpnɪts]. In fact, perhaps counterintuitively, the actual German pronunciation is [ˈlaɪbnɪts]. By the way, the only reference I can find showing the pronunciation with /p/ is Merriam-Webster, which I don't consider to be a reliable source for German pronunciation. --Iceager (talk) 14:45, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Albanian numerals[edit]

You can find a summary of different authors on Albanian numerals here. Aigest (talk) 08:31, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Pronunciation of Mozart[edit]

Hi, I responded to your comment on the Mozart talk page. Opus33 (talk) 17:16, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Albanian verbs[edit]

I'll try to find some works on that. Bests Aigest (talk) 08:09, 7 December 2010 (UTC)

  1. Albanian grammar by Victor Friedman Linguist
  2. Albanian grammar by Xhevat LLOSHI, Prof. Doctor of Linguistics
  3. Albanian verbs by Geoff Husić

These are online sources regarding Albanian verbs. Are they useful? Aigest (talk) 09:14, 8 December 2010 (UTC)

Hebrew[edit]

Benwing, can you look at the article Dukus Horant and help me with the Hebrew characters? I have three problems. For some reason I can't get the colon right in the fourth line, so the lines are all indented to the same place. If possible, of course, it would be better to have them right justified instead of left justified, but I can't see how to do that either. And then, the three dots which I have put in (also in the translation) should not be there - we actually want a protected space, so the two stichs of each line are clearly separate, and ideally the the second stichs should be tabbed to the same place. If you look here: http://homepages-nw.uni-regensburg.de/~dug22463/Transitions.pdf on page 34 (of the PDF - 78 of the article) you will see what I am trying to copy. --Doric Loon (talk) 13:17, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Thanks for your message - I answered on my own page. --Doric Loon (talk) 11:17, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Irish[edit]

While I'm neutral to whether your recent additions to Irish phonology ought to be present in the article or placed elsewhere, it would be helpful if you provided a fuller citation than "Sihler (1995)." Thanks. — Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɛ̃ɾ̃ˡi] 05:27, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

Okay[edit]

I understand that you hold the opinion that the Choctaw etymology is incorrect. But being false or a minority view doesn't make something Original Research. Original Research is adding the unreferenced view or speculation of an editor. The Choctaw etymology is widely reported and well referenced whatever its validity. That is why I and others have restored the material. I suggest you find a published statement saying that the etymology is no longer taken seriously and add that comment with a reference to support it. μηδείς (talk) 22:41, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

Please take care with what you say about others.[edit]

Hi, thank you for your thoughtful comments at my talk page. But I need to warn you, in particular, that you must not cast aspersions on others or make personal attacks against them, such as by calling them "a horrible POV warrior who seems to have no interest in reforming", without at the same time providing evidence for your assertions in the form of diffs. Thanks,  Sandstein  11:00, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

Hi Benwing. I would add that you've implied that I was sanctioned for POV (and/or described me as a "POV warrior"), and for "watch my back", when neither is true. I also don't really edit in this topic area. Would you mind just removing any references to me from your comment to Sandstein? Thanks. Jayjg (talk) 02:07, 6 March 2011 (UTC)

Hello and very sorry to take so long to respond. I was out of the country and it turned out there was no Internet access anywhere near where I was staying; I've been very busy catching up since I returned and only just now have gotten back to Wikipedia. I'm aware you're no longer much involved in editing contentious I/P articles, and I think your behavior since being sanctioned has been unusual and extremely admirable; most editors in similar situations, it seems, have just quit Wikipedia in disgust. Instead, you continued working on other areas of WP and made a genuine attempt to follow the suggested path towards having the topic ban removed (e.g. working on improving the quality of important articles to move them towards Featured Article status). You also were willing to admit that you may have gone too far in your editing behavior.

My mention of your "watch my back" comment was not to suggest that you were sanctioned specifically because of this. What does seem to be the case is that your comment triggered a great deal of heat and helped push many people towards the opinion that you needed to be sanctioned. Similar thing goes for the other "offenses" I mentioned. As I said in my comment, I think the focus on "actionable offenses" is misplaced. I've thought somewhat about this and it seems to me that the problem is that people keep making an analogy between Wikipedia and a democratic society. In such a society, individual rights (e.g. self-expression) are defended for their own sake, and are weighed against (and often, justifiably so, considered more important than) overall societal goals. (You might say something similar about a university, where professors (in theory at least) have specific academic freedom to pursue research without political interference from the university, even if the university thinks it is embarrassing or detrimental to their bottom line.) I think a better analogy is with an organization such as a corporation or army. The overall goals of a society are diffuse and often hard to quantify, whereas corporations and armies have specific, measurable goals (maximize profits, control territory). Similarly Wikipedia has the specific goal of producing high-quality, well-sourced, unbiased articles. In a corporation, e.g., no one has an intrinsic "right" to work on any particular project or have any particular idea of theirs be investigated. If someone's participation in a project is harming that project, or the company's overall interests, they will be reassigned or even let go of, whether or not this harm is their "fault"; the company's benefit needs to take priority over the individual's benefit. I see Wikipedia topic bans as something similar, necessary sometimes for the benefit of an overall article quality.

As for potentially referring to you as a POV warrior, perhaps there is a less emotionally-charged or more euphemistic term that could be used instead of "POV warring", e.g. "agenda-focused editing" or something. Essentially what I'm referring to is an editing pattern that seems to involve edits that consistently favor one side or another (especially when it's not obvious that such edits are needed to fix bias in the other direction), along with aggressive patrolling of the articles in question and a general willingness to get one's way by outlasting contrary editors in a "war of attrition". IMO these last two behaviors are the most problematic, as in practice they drive away all but a hard core of editors willing to engage in similar behaviors. I haven't reviewed your contributions at the time in detail to see whether they fit this pattern. All I can say is that a number of people seem to have made accusations of a similar sort, and you were sanctioned for behavior that appears to be of the sort that I'm mentioning.

However, the reason I mentioned your name in this context is specifically to indicate someone who has changed their behavior and moved away from this sort of tendentious editing; in other words to indicate that topic bans don't necessarily drive away the "good" editors that we want to keep, who have lots of good things to contribute and are willing to learn from their mistakes. I think this is an important point to make, and offhand I don't know of anyone else has come back from such a severe topic ban.

(Whether an indefinite topic ban was warranted in the first place is another issue. I think these should really be last-resort options; much better to use temporary bans of increasing severity, only of a few days at first, to impose a "cooling-off" period and allow the involved party/parties to reflect on their behavior and its results. I have no idea about the prior history of any sanctions against you, and I don't see any obvious way to figure this out other than a lot of digging through old discussion pages and such. There isn't even any mention of you on WP:ARBPIA that I can see.)

Benwing (talk) 00:57, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

Hi Benwing. I appreciate your thoughtful response, which did help clarify and ameliorate some of what you said. However, my point was that a) I don't think that specific parts of your comments were accurate, particularly as stated, and b) in any event, no-one wants to be talked about when they're not around and not involved in an issue, particularly when it's a public conversation. Can I request that, if you won't remove any references to me (which is still my preference), could you at least commit to not commenting about me again in situations in which I'm not involved? That would seem to be a minimal sort of common courtesy. Oh, and if you don't mind, I prefer to keep discussions in one place, so I'll keep an eye out here for any response. Jayjg (talk) 02:14, 17 March 2011 (UTC)
Hi, sorry to be late in responding, somehow the "new message" notice didn't appear (or disappeared before I noticed it). I completely understand your concerns about being mentioned. The reason I don't want to remove your mentions is that it sets a potentially very constraining precedent -- naturally, no one really wants their name mentioned in a controversial context, and what is to prevent everyone from making a similar request? We're talking about an issue that is definitely related to behavior by a specific set of people, and if I can't mention those people specifically I don't see how I can make a coherent point. At least one of the two mentions of you is in a context where I was specifically talking about potential long-term effects of topic bans. In a context like this there's no way to avoid mentioning past topic bans. What I do promise is that I'll think carefully before mentioning you in the future and make sure that it's necessary and truly relevant to the situation in hand. I'll also notify you if I mention you. In any case it's unlikely I'll be wading into this issue in the near future. As I mentioned before, I don't have the time or stomach to fight against POV-pushing editors and there doesn't appear to be the administrative will to stop them. As long as this continues I don't think my future editing attempts are going to be any less painful than before; better to just stay away. Benwing (talk) 03:59, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Your page moves[edit]

Hello! Recently you moved/renamed 'Olekha, Nyenkha, Chocangacakha, and Lakha. I was wondering if you'd reconsider these moves because -kha means "language" (the new titles are redundant and may not be real terms) and there is no ethnic group with an identical name. For example, Dzongkha, Standard Hindi, and Urdu do not have "language" after them. The Wikipedia:Naming conventions (languages), first line, indicates no suffix is necessary. What do you think? JFHJr () 04:48, 22 April 2011 (UTC)

Template language[edit]

I happened to find your post at [10] when searching to see if anyone had done what you propose. I'm a former computer science academic who has also recently started template 'programming'. It is indeed an appalling language. In the area that interests me (WP:PLANTS) there are 'taxobox' templates which are known to have odd behaviours, if not errors, but which have simply defied debugging to date. Even if you can only produce a separately mounted tool which converts a more sensible syntax to Wikimedia template code, this would be really useful. Ideally it would be two-way. I've found a template with 11 successive occurrences of "}"! Peter coxhead (talk) 09:20, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

History of Old Norse and Icelandic vowels[edit]

Hello, Benwing. Thank you for your much-needed recent contributions to Old Norse#Vowels, and in particular you nicely resolved the dependency of the height of a, ę and ǫ on the construction used. However, I have a couple concerns about the new table I'd like to discuss. Firstly, I think the orthographic information should be left to Old Norse orthography (which has gaps), so that any changes will not have to maintained in multiple articles. Secondly, I think that the table should be split (annoying, I know) for the following reasons:

  • The Proto-Germanic -> North(west) Germanic information is more relevant to Proto-Norse, which itself is relatively deprived of content.
  • The Old Icelandic information is more relevant under Old Norse#Old Icelandic or History of Icelandic, except the 1st grammarian-era column because of its similarity to the general vowel system of the time.
  • There is a tendency to bias the article towards Old Icelandic which has taken work to offset.
  • Having a thinner table will allow us to double up the columns on each half-table, saving vertical space.

So, I propose a PGmc->PNorse table for Proto-Norse, a PNorse->Primitive Old Norse->12th C. Old Icelandic table for Old Norse#Vowels, and a Later->Modern Icelandic table for Old Norse#Old Icelandic or 12C->Later->Modern Icelandic table for History of Icelandic. If the table proves otherwise useful as-is, it could be recovered from history. ᛭ LokiClock (talk) 12:58, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Usually I like tables that take a long historical view, as it makes it easier to see the change over time. If you strictly split tables, it makes it hard to cross-correlate. However, I'm not opposed to a two-way split Proto-Germanic -> Old Norse and Old Norse->Modern Icelandic. Even in a split like this, though, I think it's better to include significant overlap in the tables, even though that makes maintenance more difficult. In this case, this would mean that the Proto-Germanic -> Old Norse table would look more or less like the current table, sorted by Proto-Germanic vowels, while the Old Norse -> modern table would be sorted by Old Norse vowels and show the outcomes in various modern languages, including ideally Swedish/Danish/Norwegian/Faroese as well as Icelandic. The Old Norse table would have a column on the left indicating the Proto-Germanic sources of different Old Norse vowels, e.g. for y, u (+i-mut), i (+w-mut). I actually went ahead and created these two tables (a lot of work esp. to get the outcomes for Faroese and Swedish in place!). The modern-outcome table should have all of Swedish, as well as Danish and Norwegian, but I don't have good references on hand to easily

add these. Benwing (talk) 10:15, 17 May 2011 (UTC)

I agree that a long historical track is useful, but it's a little over the scope. It could go in North Germanic#History, though, and leave each article to document its history. That would lend the separate histories to descriptions in terms of mass shifts and their dates, the content not suited for a table but redundant if the table already exists. ᛭ LokiClock (talk) 20:25, 19 May 2011 (UTC)
But there's still the problem Old Norse has of not addressing early Old Norse, which means at least not addressing the transcriptions of any runestone article. So it's probably better as you have it. ᛭ LokiClock (talk) 14:33, 21 May 2011 (UTC)

templates[edit]

Hi Ben,

We used to have a language template like the one you just created. However, it was deleted due to problems with server loads. I don't know exactly what the problems were, but I thought it best to delete your template until it can be clarified. It might no longer be a problem, but it might still be. — kwami (talk) 11:39, 21 May 2011 (UTC)

laterals[edit]

Actually, laterals aren't a manner of articulation at all, let alone sonorants. They're only on that table because they're so commonly listed on the y axis of inventory charts along with manners of articulation, much as VOT and different airstreams often are, though if you look at languages with lots of laterals, you'll often find that they're given a column rather than a row, as if they were a place of articulation. (E.g. at Halkomelem.)

It may be that, whatever we decide for the apical-laminal problem, laterals may fit in with the solution. — kwami (talk) 08:26, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Also, what is your source that only alveolar sibilants are grooved? AFAIK, that tends to be a characteristic of all sibilants, at least in English. — kwami (talk) 10:41, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, I've been looking at SOWL too, but they say they don't know which sibilants are grooved, if maybe all are, or if it varies between languages. So distinguishing /s z/ as 'grooved', in contrast to all the rest, doesn't seem justified from their description. I've reworded some of the articles to say 'hollow', meaning the pit in the middle of the tongue rather than the groove in the back of the tongue. Hopefully that's accurate. — kwami (talk) 23:58, 27 May 2011 (UTC)

Postalveolar consonant[edit]

Thank you for your rewrite of the article Postalveolar consonant. I think the article now gives a better idea of what they are like without confusing different terms. Munci (talk) 21:20, 25 May 2011 (UTC)

CounterPunch[edit]

As someone who has edited the CounterPunch article in the past, you might want to comment on this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:CounterPunch#Moving_on BobFromBrockley (talk) 10:39, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

History of the English language[edit]

Thanks for working on this article. The main thing still lacking is sources. Can you add a few? WCCasey (talk) 05:21, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

Voiceless alveolar retracted sibilant[edit]

What happened to the content though, I can see tha talk page you moved but the main article is now a redlink. Akerbeltz (talk) 15:14, 18 June 2011 (UTC)

IPA symbol names changed[edit]

Hi, about the changed names in {{IPAsym}}. Could you take a look at this question? -DePiep (talk) 20:56, 22 June 2011 (UTC)

Choctaw/OK[edit]

Howdy, Benwing. If you care to join in, the Choctaw/okeh discussion is once again hotting up over at Talk:Okay. —Scheinwerfermann T·C06:55, 12 July 2011 (UTC)

You deleted verifiable evidence from the "Etymology of Okay" article that ran contrary to your favored theory. At the moment, I'm not sure I can work with you given your lack of discretion when editing. You may want to have a look at the discussion page, before I flag the page as lacking neutrality. Terms like "resurrected", incessantly belittling qualifiers for other theories, do not seem to me in keeping with the wikipedia spirit, which surprises me given your experience and evident knowledge.

I'm also not quite sure what the long parenthesis on the appearance of the Webster's dictionary, or the claims regarding the Black Panthers have to do with the question at hand... the latter seems much more like an attempt at an ad hominem argument?

My apologies. I'm a bit of a hothead, and I am annoyed that you deleted the citation from the book published in 1784, half a century prior to your earliest citation. (You did treat a few other earlier citations with the respected lexicographer Cassidy's comments, however, you did NOT treat this earliest one, verifiable at the online archive...) Perhaps this was just an oversight?

Hope we can keep this friendly. :flowers: Any further discussion should treat the earliest known citation, which is now quite logically at the beginning of the article.

Are you still at UT Austin? lovely town! (I'm in Lyons, France though some of my early linguistics training was done at LSU Baton Rouge.) SashiRolls (talk) 15:49, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

Egyptian Arabic[edit]

Thanks for discussing the subject about the transcriptions. I'll explain the reason for my edits on my talk page. --Mahmudmasri (talk) 12:37, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

Please, read my discussions at my talk page and at Egyptian Arabic talk. --Mahmudmasri (talk) 15:38, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

I have replied on my talk page regarding MSA usage in Egypt. --Mahmudmasri (talk) 06:35, 13 August 2011 (UTC)

Gallo-Italic[edit]

Can you look after Gallo-Italic? There has been a flurry of edits recently through an opinionated IP (apparently of Italian origin and ideologically motivated) removing Hull's view and changing the article to deny the mainstream view (at least outside of Italy) that Padanian is (in origin) Western Romance, not Italo-Romance, and its current hybrid "look" a result of secondary influence from the south. Also, I fail to see the relevance of German- and Italian-language sources for the question of "Gallo-Italic" vs. "Gallo-Italian". Eventually, the terminological confusion needs to be addressed, and the divergence between the page title and the intro solved. I don't think "Northern Italian languages" is an appropriate title, as the article explicitly excluded Venetian; "Northern Italian languages", if at all, only makes sense as a a term if it is used to include Venetian, in opposition to "Gallo-Italic". I was considering reverting the article wholesale to its state of June and renaming it to "Gallo-Italic", but I wanted to seek you out first, as you seem to be much better versed in the subject. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 01:32, 12 August 2011 (UTC)

Thank you for your great work. As for Hull: Personally, I like the term "Padanian" for its neutrality, even if it may have appropriated by a political movement in the meanwhile. But "Padanian" does not in itself say any more than "language varieties spoken in the Padanian plain". It takes no inherent stance on the affiliation or independence (or not) of the language variaties so named. Every other term is too loaded with specific ideas about these language varieties. More important, however, is Hull's claim that "Padanian", including Venetian, used to be less Italian-like and more Gallo-Romance-like in the past (say, the High Middle Ages), and had especially close ties to Rhaeto-Romance (in the sense of Romansh-Ladin-Friulian). Interestingly, there appear to be relic words and names that suggest strongly that the palatalisation of /k/ and /g/ to /t͡ʃ/ and /d͡ʒ/ in front of /a/, a characteristic innovation of most of Gallo-Romance and in particular, Rhaeto-Romance (Romansh-Ladin-Friulian), was shared by "Padanian" varieties at least as far south as the Po. I think this view is notable and serious because I have heard other specialists confirm this, and it should be mentioned in the article, as it used to be before the IP came along and removed all mention of Hull and his view. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 02:54, 13 August 2011 (UTC)
Could you support me at Northern Italian languages again? There's a bunch of IPs plastering tags and templates all over the lede, a behaviour which strikes me as quite trollish and childishly defiant. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 17:30, 11 September 2011 (UTC)
Your version has now been completely replaced with an older version. I'll undo the reversion. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 20:23, 11 October 2012 (UTC)

Classical Arabic interesting information[edit]

Hi Benwing. I read your added information regarding a Mecca dialect vs Classical literary dialect. It's very interesting. I was always wondering about the origin of ى pronounced /aː/ and why not write it ا. It is even more interesting to read about the re-phonemicization.

That makes Literary Arabic used today a constructed/an artificial language by all means, which is essentially Mecca dialect artificially phonemicized to Classical Arabic then artificially phonemicized again to approach some of the Modern dialects phonology traits for simplification. After all that, reciting Koran today is with a slightly different pronunciation from Literary Arabic (which even differs regionally) and absolutely different from Mecca dialect artificially phonemicized to Classical literary dialect.

Are there available web-links to read further about that? --Mahmudmasri (talk) 04:09, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

Speedy deletion nomination of Laboratory phonology[edit]

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Genetic tree of West Germanic[edit]

Hi Benwing,

I've added a section to Talk:Germanic_languages#Genetic_tree_of_West_Germanic. Could you undo the last changes you've made to the article? Making a difference between Dutch (Low Franconian) and Low German (or Low Saxon) isn't historically correct since both varieties developed from one dialect continuum not so long ago and they could still be seen as two varieties strongly connected with each other. You could even merge Dutch/Low Germand and High German as one linguistic group, and this still would be scientifically correct. However, this would lead to a lot of protests, especially from the Dutch speakers. Kind regards --Kening Aldgilles (talk) 00:50, 25 December 2011 (UTC)

aspect vs. tense paragraph[edit]

Hi Benwing,

In August 2005 you made a revision of Grammatical Aspect article, having introduced the phrase "Aspect is a somewhat difficult concept to grasp for the speakers of most modern Indo-European languages, because they tend to conflate the concept of aspect with the concept of tense."

Now this phrase which seems a very important sone, disappeared (it was deleted by someone named duoduoduo, who isn't linguist and who does not reveal his name).

I will be very thankful for telling where you got that phrase from, or if it was your own phrasing. You can reply directly to chetosco@gmail.com. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Artem Ivantsov, BA in philology, fluent in 5 languages — Preceding unsigned comment added by Chetosco (talkcontribs) 10:40, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

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Gothic strong and weak declensions[edit]

It's true that there is no inherent 'weakness' in the Gothic weak declension, in the sense that they have less distinct endings. But the terms apply not just to the inflectional patterns but also to the double declension that is used for adjectives. The terms 'strong' and 'weak' are used in this sense even when discussing Proto-Germanic, where the endings are even more distinct than they are in Gothic. The page Proto-Germanic language says this: Adjectives evolved into strong and weak declensions, originally with indefinite and definite meaning, respectively. As a result of its definite meaning, the weak form came to be used in the daughter languages in conjunction with demonstratives and definite articles. The terms "strong" and "weak" are based on the later development of these declensions in languages such as German and Old English, where the strong declensions have more distinct endings. In the proto-language, as in Gothic, such terms have no relevance. So you could call them 'indefinite' and 'definite' declensions, but strong and weak just happen to be the accepted terms in this case, and in the interest of avoiding confusion with other literature it might be better to maintain that usage, even if the motivation for using those terms doesn't apply to Gothic like it does for the later Germanic languages. CodeCat (talk) 23:28, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Diasystem[edit]

I have recently gotten into a bit of a spat with another editor, Dale Chock at Talk:Diasystem. The long and the short of it is that Dale has removed content that I think is worth keeping. It hasn't gotten disruptive, but I can see that Dale has a vested interest in portraying me as incompetent so that he can dismiss my position. The presence of a mediator doesn't seem to have an effect on this. Do you think you could help out and participate in the discussion? — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 15:28, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

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Somebody reverted your edit.[edit]

It looks like in this article, you previously blanked it. Just letting you know. Hill Crest's WikiLaser (Boom). (talk) 01:40, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

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Table of exponential family distributions[edit]

I'm glad someone else felt this page needed a table too. I haven't had time to think about this for the last few weeks so it's good you went ahead and added your version to the article directly. Your version is a lot more comprehensive than mine anyway. Nippashish (talk) 19:21, 1 April 2012 (UTC)

Smile![edit]

A Barnstar!
A smile for you

You’ve just received a random act of kindness! 66.87.7.19 (talk) 15:54, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

Marshallese phonology discussion[edit]

Are you still involved? Since you rose the dispute, it seems to make sense you should be involved in the ongoing discussion. - Gilgamesh (talk) 08:10, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

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Vietnamese B with Flourish[edit]

The letter pair is being balloted for inclusion in the UCS. -- Evertype· 21:02, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

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Categorical distribution[edit]

Hi Benwing. Thanks for all the useful content you added to the categorical distribution page. Unfortunately, user 81.98.35.149 recklessly deleted vast amounts of work on that page. I reverted that change, but then he/she immediately reverted mine. Perhaps you might like to help me establish this content with sources and such. --Headlessplatter (talk) 15:51, 28 April 2012 (UTC)

Resp: :Don't try your bombast with me. You have absolute failed to follow even the most basic Wikipedia standards of providing sources for materail contributed. I suggest you bother to read {{Wikipedia:Your first article}}. The fact that you have got away with such a lazy tactic of not bothering to provide proper citations on multiple articles is no excuse. See WP:BURDEN "The burden of evidence lies with the editor who adds or restores material. You may remove any material lacking an inline citation to a reliable source." Remember that your personal opinion is of no interest to Wikipedia readers. The fact that you have still not bothered to add any citations to the material you added to categorical distribution can only be taken as clear evidence of your unwillingness to comply with Wikipedia conventions. 81.98.35.149 (talk) 07:43, 30 April 2012 (UTC)

Matrix calculus[edit]

Hi, I think it's only fair (and would have awarded you this earlier, but have been busy, sorry... ):

CleanupBarnstar.PNG The Cleanup Barnstar
Thanks a trillion for your formidable efforts in cleaning up the Matrix calculus article, especially the tedious formatting of tabulating the large number of identities. =) F = q(E+v×B) ⇄ ∑ici 09:00, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Leonese language[edit]

Hello Benwing

  I am interested in learning Leonese language so that I can contribute to the Leonese language page in wikibook.Could You please tell me some sources for learning this language?  I have fair knowledge of Spanish language .

Sreenivas.sudarshan (talk) 16:46, 25 May 2012 (UTC)

Sreenivas.sudarshan (talk) 16:45, 25 May 2012 (UTC)

RFC over at Feedback Tool V5[edit]

Just wanted to let you know that over at Wikipedia_talk:Article_Feedback_Tool/Version_5#Broken.21_Can.27t_make_it_go_away we may have made more progress with helping you out but we'd like to know if our guess is correct. :D Jesse V. (talk) 16:09, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

Approximate versus genuine confidence intervals[edit]

Hey, Benwing:

Back in October of 2010, you made some thoughtful changes to the article on confidence intervals and added to it this text:

if confidence intervals are constructed across many separate data analyses of repeated experiments, the proportion of such intervals that contain the true value of the parameter will approximately match the confidence level

Your edit was definitely an improvement at the time, and the language remains in the article today. But I think it's not quite right on one small point. The coverage probability, i.e., the proportion of such intervals that contain the true value of the parameter, should be at least equal to the nominal confidence level for the construction to be a genuine confidence interval. One that merely approximately matches would be called an approximate confidence interval.

I plan to edit the article to change to read like this:

if confidence intervals are constructed across many separate data analyses of repeated experiments, the average proportion of such intervals that contain the true value of the parameter will at least match the confidence level

Would you be amenable to this? It might be reasonable pedagogically to omit the word average if one thinks it can be subsumed within the mild ambiguity of the word match. But I think the at least qualification is important.

--Scwarebang (talk) 09:23, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

I am more of a Bayesian and don't know the frequentist math well enough to judge the veracity of your statement about "at least equal". You might well be right. However I don't agree with your interpretation of "approximately"; this is meant in a non-technical sense, and expresses no more than the law of large numbers concerning what probabilities mean. I'm also not sure your edits are going to help the average reader; I assume they'd be more confused than enlightened. The point of my edits was to try to explain what a confidence interval is, which is tricky and doesn't match the obvious (in this case, Bayesian) interpretation of "probability that true parameter is in this region", since the confidence interval not the parameter is random. Hence the edit is trying to explain intuitively what a "random interval" means. If you want to make the point about "at least equal", it would probably better be made in a footnote that mentions "at least equal" and explains it in more detail. Benwing (talk) 22:08, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

Dalmatian vowel development?[edit]

How did the Latin vowels develop in Dalmatian? Does it have the "Italic" pattern, the Romanian, the Sardinian or something else altogether? In his Historische Grammatik des Kroatischen (2007), Holzer says in a footnote that the consensus is that Dalmatian follows the Italic pattern, probably the justification for its grouping together with Italo-Western as its closest relative (but not actually within Italian, as claimed in Romance languages#Classification and related languages – of course that depends on the definition of Italian: if the Lausberg zones are included, and if these constitute primary splits given their divergent development concerning apparently extremely early isoglosses, Italian would be identical with Romance as a whole, which would be obviously nonsensical). Does that agree with your knowledge? (I find it hard to tell from the samples given the numerous subsequent vocalic changes in Dalmatian.) --Florian Blaschke (talk) 12:19, 1 August 2012 (UTC)

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Invitation to comment at Monty Hall problem RfC[edit]

You are invited to comment on the following probability-related RfC:

Talk:Monty Hall problem#Conditional or Simple solutions for the Monty Hall problem?

--Guy Macon (talk) 17:15, 8 September 2012 (UTC)

Alveolar/Dental merges?[edit]

I wanted to make sure that you especially saw my new post at WikiProject Linguistics. I suspect you may have some helpful out-of-the-box thinking on the matter, considering your past work regarding sibilant consonants. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 23:28, 14 September 2012 (UTC)

Here's some advice[edit]

I noticed that your talk page is becoming very long. By the steps at WP:ARCHIVE, do you want to archive your talk page? Hill Crest's WikiLaser! (BOOM!) 20:19, 23 September 2012 (UTC)

Semitic languages and Proto-Semitic language[edit]

User:91.148.130.233 asks (on Talk:Proto-Semitic language) why you've resolved the redundancies between these two articles by keeping the content in Semitic languages, even though it leaves that article bloated and Proto-Semitic language stripped to skeletality. Would it not be a better fit to the nominal topics of these two to put at least 3.1 through 3.3 of the current Semitic languages back in Proto-Semitic language? 4pq1injbok (talk) 07:42, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Proto-Indo-European language reference[edit]

You inserted a reference to Huld, Martin E (1997), "Satəm, Centum, and Hokum", in Adams, Douglas Q, pp. 115–38, but it is not clear which Adams title it refers to. Please complete the reference. Lgfcd (talk) 12:18, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

Oops. Done. Benwing (talk) 05:06, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Vitruvian Barnstar Hires.png The Technical Barnstar
Outstanding work on the Variation Bayes article. Awaterl (talk) 20:49, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

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Thank you![edit]

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For your work on Proto-Slavic, which has improved it a lot! CodeCat (talk) 14:08, 22 January 2013 (UTC)

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Strange back yer[edit]

I noticed that you write ƅ, whatever that character is, whenever you really mean ъ the back yer. I'm not sure if you're aware so I'm letting you know, because you also inserted into articles a few times. CodeCat (talk) 14:36, 30 January 2013 (UTC)

Reconstructing Proto-Slavic accent and tone[edit]

I am trying to understand the relationship between tone in Slavic and in its descendants, in particular in the word *domŭ. This word could not originally have had contrastive tone, because it had no long vowels or diphthongs. So there are only really two possibilities, *dòmŭ and *domŭ̀ (> neoacute *dõmŭ I think?). Both Serbo-Croatian and Slovene have a long falling accent on this word (dȏm) and Czech also seems to have a remnant of length in dům. But Slovak and Polish seem to reflect an earlier short vowel, dom. I am wondering if you could offer me some insight about how this situation arose? CodeCat (talk) 03:20, 1 February 2013 (UTC)

About the Albanian <Gj> and [edit]

I gave you an answer on the talk page of the Albanian language(Copy paste from there: I read somewhere that Luciano Canepari called them voiced/voiceless palatal affricates, but I can't find the original source. There is the difference between gj/xh , ç/q but not the ones described in the main page. 69.136.155.232 (talk) 22:30, 31 January 2013 (UTC)). As a native speaker I can assure you there is a difference between the sounds mentioned above. However, I've often read people describing them as 'soft' (<gj> is a soft <xh>, is a soft <ç>), a description I don't agree with. Perhaps you can help. I'll give you this link where the "q" sound is repeated a lot http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Ykks0Suk2s well, the words "Shqypni, shqiptar" are repeated a lot, so the "q" sound found in them as well. I hope it's not the the same recording you used, I'll give you other links if it's necessary. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.136.155.232 (talk)

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Tone of the verb forms[edit]

I suppose you took the tones from Derksen's dictionary, but that doesn't list any of the inflected forms. Where did you find those? CodeCat (talk) 02:32, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

I worked them out from a combination of the accent class when it is given (e.g. in classes a and b the accent will generally stay the same); the listed outcomes (esp. those of Russian and Chakavian); and knowledge of the outcome in certain cases (e.g. *-ìti verbs have neoacute retraction in the present). Benwing (talk) 02:42, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
Why exactly do they have retraction in the present? The accent didn't fall on a yer in those forms, did it? Also, I have always wondered about the accent classes. A and B are always described as fixed and C as mobile, but in most examples I can find of A and B in various languages, they also seem to be mobile to some degree. Are there actual rules that allow you to determine the accent position and type of an individual verb or nominal form, if you know its accent class? A description of that would be very welcome in the grammar section! CodeCat (talk) 02:45, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
Neoacute retraction sometimes occurred in particular grammatical forms, even when not falling on a weak yer; it's unclear why. In general, A and B should indeed be fixed, except that
  • neoacute retraction interferes in the case of B;
  • there are language-specific accent movements (retraction in standard Serbo-Croatian, various retractions and advancements in Slovenian);
  • in multisyllabic endings, there may be some stickiness with "fixed" B accent in terms of which syllable it goes on;
  • sometimes there are analogical changes in certain languages (although you'd expect them to make the accent less mobile).
If you can point out some particular examples, I may be able to clarify them. Benwing (talk) 03:01, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm actually asking more about the general picture. If you look at the Proto-Slavic period before all the accent changes, are A and B indeed fixed on the same syllable in every single form?
Yes, I'm pretty sure -- or at least, in B it should consistently remain on one of the syllables of the ending if there's more than one.
And how does paradigm C "work" in terms of accent placement, since just saying "it's mobile" is rather vague. CodeCat (talk) 03:22, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
This is rather complex. Take a look at Proto-Balto-Slavic for some sample paradigms. I don't have the references handy to show exactly what the Proto-Slavic paradigms were. The following book seems to describe this stuff in super-gory detail, and around pages 166-175 there are tables showing the reconstructed mobile accent paradigms for nouns in Proto-Slavic and "Common Slavic" (= Middle Common Slavic, it seems):

http://books.google.com/books?id=n_u0RPhpOS0C

You can't see all the pages, but the tables for most of the singular cases and some of the other cases are visible.
Another place that has some tables (e.g. tables 9 and 10) is this:

http://books.google.com/books?id=J1M9DncA2iUC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

Benwing (talk) 04:43, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

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Ending of the Proto-Slavic imperative[edit]

Would you happen to know what endings the imperative had in Proto-Slavic? Supposedly, the ending was -ě after hard consonants and -i after soft ones (from original *ai). But the 2nd and 3rd person singular forms were apparently different. I also wonder what happened when the ending was attached to verbs that ended in -j-. Did -ji remain that way, or did it become -jĭ? I'm asking because Slovene has the imperative ending in -aj (for the a-verbs) which seems like it should originate from -jĭ and not -ji (which would remain -ji in Slovene wouldn't it?). OCS isn't much help here because it doesn't distinguish jĭ and ji. However, a few OCS verbs have an exceptional imperative in -jĭ which then causes iotation of the preceding consonant, so that -djĭ shows up as -ždĭ with a written yer. So clearly some of the imperatives had a form ending in a yer, so the others could have too. Do you know more? CodeCat (talk) 00:39, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

If you search for "imperative proto-slavic" in Google you'll find the section in Sussex + Cubberley, which you can read. This gives the imperative endings in Proto-Slavic for all classes and endings and says the 2sg was long -i for all verb classes.
Schenker p. 103 covers the evolution from PIE in depth. He says PIE thematic optative -o-ī- yielded -ōi-, "whose length may be inferred from its subsequent development as an acute monophthong". Kortlandt would likely disagree; since I've heard that the PIE sequence was really -o-ih1-, the acute presumably just reflects the laryngeal. In any case, after /j/ this was (according to Schenker) fronted to -ēi- and monophthongized to -ī-. Meanwhile, PIE athematic -i̯ē- (actually -i̯-eh1-: my comment, not his) was replaced by -ū̯- (??? this must be a misprint; does he mean -i̯ī-?), which was either "derived from -i̯-o-i̯-" with the "expected fronting of o" or was "analogical to -ī- (DU and PL)", e.g. "2 SG *dad'i < *dād-i̯-ī-s (OCS daždi, shortened eventually to daždĭ), 2 PL *dadite < *dād-ī-te". Make of this what you will.
The next para says that "this development made of -i- the favorite formant of the imperative" and it analogically replaced hard -ě- after the 2nd velar palatalization.
The modern developments must all be shortenings, although unclear why, but note similar shortenings in the infinitive. Benwing (talk) 01:13, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Something about that doesn't seem right. OCS has a short yer in daždĭ, so how could that have originated from long *-jī? It probably was *-jĭ rather. I'm not sure how to explain that, but it seems possible that the alternation between the stems -yeh1- and -ih1- was somehow re-formed as -yi- ~ -ih1-... or maybe that -ih1- was generalised to the singular and then the ī was reinterpreted as -jĭ?. Also, the laryngeal following -oyh1- was deleted in PIE, at least according to Ringe 2006, so the ending would have just been -oys, which then developed into -ī according to Lunt (he compares it with the masculine nominative plural, which also became *-ī < *ai). CodeCat (talk) 01:28, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
As I said, the infinitive was originally -ti but was shortened to -tĭ in many languages. Hence you have OCS -ti but Russian -t', formal Czech -ti but less formal -t, etc. There's no reason the imperative couldn't have shortened similarly -- in fact this is what Schenker explicitly says. I'm sure there are other sources discussing the imperative but you can't just put in what seems like the most likely solution to you -- that's OR. As for Ringe 2006, it's true that he says this but this rule is quite recent and I doubt it's universally accepted. Perhaps this was a regional PIE change that didn't penetrate everywhere; the claim for Ringe's rule being general in PIE is largely based on the assumed syllabification required for -oyh1-, which would be violated by the laryngeal -- but perhaps those syllabification rules aren't quite right. It seems clear, for example, that in a word tṇHuos, the Balto-Slavic outcome was tinHwos (where H is non-syllabic), which violates supposed PIE syllabification rules. Maybe the rules themselves varied from dialect to dialect -- who knows. Benwing (talk) 07:20, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
BTW Sussex and Cubberley make the same claim as Schenker regarding the athematic imperative -- look on table 5.34 page 306, which gives the full paradigms of all athematic verbs.Benwing (talk) 07:49, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

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Tamil edit[edit]

I put this on my talk page but add it to yours, which is the suggested method (not always followed by everyone as it happens.) I see you are an expert in linguistics and are active in editing. I don't see too many edits in the language area but I will leave any that I do see that are not clearly pure vandalism alone. I will trust that you or someone with more expertise will take care of them. I see so many vandalisms with respect to Tamil and India on a wide variety of topics, I suppose I assumed this was just one more. Usually I don't make assumptions because the vandalism is clear or I know the topic or I check some sources in the footnotes. Sometimes the sources are not online of course. I have reverted thousands of vandalisms over several months and made only a few mistakes, all of which were corrected promptly. I will be cutting back on recent changes patrol soon and will return almost exclusively to creating content. If several members think I should stop this activity now, I certainly will. I started it out of curiosity on another aspect of wikipedia and found there was quite a lot of vandalism. I think over time I may make a better contribution with content creation and editing. I do take your point if you mean that I should always check on the basis or sources of deletions that could be credible. As I noted, I usually do, but occasionally one can think something appears suspect but on closer look, it is valid. Donner60 (talk) 05:56, 20 February 2013 (UTC)

If you were looking at the item just above your note, that wasn't a false positive. If you look at the edit that was actually made, it was vandalism. I was being polite. The name was there but only in an unencyclopedic phrase that could only be characterized as vandalism. Donner60 (talk) 06:02, 20 February 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I'm confused what you are referring to here. Benwing (talk) 06:13, 20 February 2013 (UTC)
Not at all important. I was referring to the comment just above yours on my talk page. Now that I think about it, it may not have been from the same person who made the only partially helpful change on the article page. In any event, I add a further comment here that I also put on my talk page in response to your later comment:
That would be helpful. I have seen some control on certain chemical formulas. I wish verified versions were available on all chemical formulas and mathematical equations. I see changes to equations in math or science articles that clearly have been written some time ago and ought to be reasonably settled. I believe these changes are quite possibly invalid. I don't touch those, however, because I have no knowledge in the area and I can not be sure there was not a typo or other mistake in the existing article. Such changes often do look suspicious. It would be a shame if the work of those who contributed such high level math and science knowledge is being easily vandalized because most reviewers may be baffled by the changes. Thanks for your comments; sorry if I was a little petulant as we get into the late night hours. Donner60 (talk) 06:19, 20 February 2013 (UTC)

Voltaire Network[edit]

If you want a fringe explanation of where Voltaire Network gets their facts, you should investigate the department of disinformation at the Ministry of Intelligence and National Security (Iran) and disinformation. You were indeed on the right track. Also look into Veterans Today which republishes articles from Iran's Press TV and Mehr News Agency which is operated by Iran's MOIS intelligence agency. Redhanker (talk) 04:18, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

Albanian on Indoeuropean vocabolary[edit]

Sorry for being late but I was kinda busy. I can not verify the sources on those edits. Although the meanings (translations) are as written there, I am not sure about their linguistic connection. Bests Aigest (talk) 14:51, 8 March 2013 (UTC)

I will try to be concise on your questions:
1. Yes he is right in correcting.--mbështet--- is the correct form in standart alb.
2. The old albanian word for wolf is ulk.
3. Vajzë or varzë (old alb) has the meaning for girl, daughter, but I don't see it as a cognate for sister. Bests Aigest (talk) 19:38, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

Warning[edit]

Stop hand.svg

You made ​​a typical vandalism [11], you remove a opinion of linguistic organizations, political issue and few sources. It does not matter what the source is more important, other opinions is also important. Do not forget, general sociolinguist sources assume that whether something is a language or a dialect of the language, extralinguistic criteria to decide: users of speech or/and political decisions, not opinions of linguists which are only addendum.

Whether you are a Silesian, Pole or American, opinions about Silesian between people are different, also between linguists (although I admit that the more linguists considered Silesian as a dialect - I do not hide this, however, not all linguists). Also important is the opinion of people using the language, the organizations of a given language, opinions by sociolinguist, opinions by linguist/other organizations, politicians etc. At this stage, you can not decide that Silesian is a dialect or Silesian is a language; in the current situation only neutral version is Silesian is a language or a dialect. And again, my viewpoint is "Silesian is a separate language or a dialect". I not pushing version of "Silesian is a (only) separate language"! My edits in the article of Silesian is proof. I watch, all opinions should be presented in the article, for a dialect and a language, not only dialect, because you are removing opinions about language. Also, your description of the change is typical personal attack ("add Franek's sources for Silesian pro-language activism"). If you do not ends this type of fraud (deletion of data and sources with a different opinion than yours) and if you do not ends personal attack, I will notify the administrators. Franek K. (talk) 18:03, 15 March 2013 (UTC)

Franek, please look at WP:V, an edit you disagree with is not vandalism. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 20:16, 15 March 2013 (UTC)
I look at WP:V and WP:NPOV. Opinions about Silesian between people are different, also between linguists (although I admit that the more linguists considered Silesian as a dialect - I do not hide this, however, not all linguists). Also important is the opinion of people using the language, the organizations of a given language, opinions by sociolinguist, opinions by linguist/other organizations, politicians etc. At this stage, you can not decide that Silesian is a dialect or Silesian is a language; in the current situation only neutral version is Silesian is a language or a dialect. I watch, all opinions should be presented in the article, for a dialect and a language, not only dialect, because Benwing removing opinions about language. This is typical vandalism according to the rules of Wikipedia. Sorry. Benwing will delete the data about Lach + sources, identifying it as not important and also opinions by linguistic organizations and political issue for Silesian + sources, all data that may disqualify his madness of Silesian as a dialect of Polish. Franek K. (talk) 21:42, 15 March 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I thought WP:V linked to WP:Vandalism. Vandalism is a deliberate attempt at disrupting or compromising the project. So by characterizing Benwing's edit as vandalism, you are implicitly accusing him of editing in bad faith. It looks to me like he was editing in good faith and, absent clear evidence otherwise, you should always assume good faith. I'm sure you don't think that Benwing is acting in bad faith, but the words we use are important in this regard. I hope you understand that this is more than just splitting hairs. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 23:22, 15 March 2013 (UTC)
You wrote, quote: "you are implicitly accusing him of editing in bad faith" - yes. Initially, I had a good faith for edits by Benwing but after a long discussion and edit war, I changed my mind. Benwing pushing only one POV-version, if any source have a different opinion, Benwing delete them. I've never seen such a blatant abuse. Your friend behaves like a vandal in this case. Sorry. Franek K. (talk) 23:43, 15 March 2013 (UTC)
Wow. Talk about "the pot calling the kettle black", as is sometimes said. Franek has been engaging in repeated personal attacks, accusing me multiple times of lying, vandalizing, etc. etc. Then he turns around and accuses *me* of personal attacks (simply because I said that I presume that his ethnicity is Silesian, given the way the issue at hand seems extremely personal to him). Likewise when I point out that his version fails WP:NPOV (along with the reasons why) and fails WP:V (along with the reasons why), etc., he immediately turns around and accuses me of the same problems, based on his own definitions of concepts like "neutral" and "reliable sources" and such, which aren't at all close to the actual definitions found in these pages. When I say (again) to him that, based on his idiosyncratic definitions, it appears he hasn't actually read these core-policy pages, and suggest that he read them, he accuses me of "lying" and of assuming bad faith, etc. He also turns around and accuses me of being a "POV pusher" because I'm trying to maintain a version that tracks what the actual linguistic sources say, with additional comments about political-ethnic developments -- whereas he wants a version that grossly exaggerates the level of non-Silesian support for considering Silesian as a separate language, and confuses this with NPOV because it doesn't explicitly say Silesian is either a dialect or a language (although written so as to strongly suggest the latter). It is difficult to have a fruitful discussion with someone who acts like this. Benwing (talk) 09:40, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

I should add, when an administrator posted a warning message about edit-warring at Silesian language onto Franek's talk page, one of the first things Franek did was to delete it, claiming it was a "strange message".[12] This seems like a no-no and suggests to me that Franek might not play fair. Benwing (talk) 09:46, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

RE: wikipedia's rules are not Jewish, but yeah, it's "kosher" to remove this section if you like. For more, see WP:USERTALK, specifically WP:REMOVED. Choyoołʼįįhí:Seb az86556 > haneʼ 10:53, 16 March 2013 (UTC)
IMHO, removing warnings and messages from one's talk page is like invoking the Fourth Amendment. It's not against the rules and shouldn't normally be used against you. But damn if it doesn't look shady. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 14:32, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

if you can help ...[edit]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Hebrew_language#Dating_Error_in_Intro.2C_end_of_2nd_paragraph. - thanks HammerFilmFan (talk) 14:26, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

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Barnstar for your edits to Old Irish[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
Thank you for your great contributions to Old Irish! Angr (talk) 18:32, 28 May 2013 (UTC)

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Proto-Finnic language[edit]

Hi, I just created this article. I'm not really very good with articles and it's hard to find sources on this, but I do have one source so I tried mostly to just "get the facts out" so to say. Could you review the article maybe, and see if you can improve upon it and link other articles to it? CodeCat (talk) 21:35, 30 May 2013 (UTC)

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Create Balto-Slavic accent?[edit]

I would like to create this article and move most of the material there, that is currently spread across various articles like Proto-Slavic, Proto-Balto-Slavic and History of the Slavic languages. The main reason is that this is a very complex topic in its own right, and having the information scattered the way it is now makes it hard to get a good overview. It's pretty much impossible to discuss the accent in Slavic without also understanding the accent in Balto-Slavic, so having a single chronological discussion is probably better than several split ones. What do you think? Can you help? CodeCat (talk) 20:02, 10 August 2013 (UTC)

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Question about Portuguese "deus"[edit]

I'm sceptical about the usual claim that Portuguese deus is a loan from Church Latin. I suspect it could as well be a native development from Proto-Romance. My hunch is grounded in the fact that other Romance languages such as Spanish and French have preserved the inherited form as well and that meu provides a phonological parallel. I believe that the Proto-Western-Romance forms were:

nominative accusative
dios dɛu
mios, m(i)a mɛu, m(i)a
tos, toa tou, toa
sos, soa sou, soa

For *tos and *sos, compare *dos "2". In Early French, ton and son can then have been created by analogy, presumably after the model of mes : *men > mien, itself after the model *res : *ren perhaps; but mes is itself not the regular, expected outcome from meus, and the way towards mon is not obvious. Clearly there are lots of analogies involved, but I can't figure them all out. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 16:09, 14 December 2013 (UTC)

I think the business about being a loan from Church Latin refers to the final -s. You normally never see nominative forms preserved in Spanish or Portuguese.
Note in fact one of the oldest documents written in Portuguese, which has both Deus "God" and deu "god", in the phrase Deus mi deu (I can't explain mi "my"): [13]
I also think the PWR forms should be:
nominative accusative atonic nominative atonic accusative
dɛ.us dɛ.u -- --
mɛ.us, mi.a mɛ.u, mi.a mos, ma mon, ma
to.us, tu.a to.u, tu.a tos, ta ton, ta
Old Occitan has both tonic m(i)eus, mia (nom.), m(i)eu, mia (obl.) and atonic mos, ma (nom.), mon, ma (obl.). Old Italian has (at least) atonic masc. mo (Paden, An Introduction to Old Occitan, p. 441). Old Portuguese has two-syllable pl. meos (vs. modern meus), cf. [14]. Italian mio (almost certainly from the accusative) is likewise two syllables. Reduction to one syllable occurred independently in various languages. The alternation between mɛ.us and mi.a is assured by Portuguese meu, minha (Old Portuguese mia); likewise Old Occitan m(i)ęu, mia. The form tu.a is based on Portuguese tua. Portuguese is particularly important because it doesn't diphthongize. Old Occitan likewise diphthongizes fairly rarely (often before velars, including /w/, but not usually elsewhere) and doesn't reduce triphthongs. Spanish and Italian mio is due to triphthong reduction: *mɛ.o > *miɛ.o > mi.o. Note the same change in Italian io (two syllables) < *e.o < ego and Spanish yo (one syllable).
BTW your reconstruction of *dos "two" is incorrect, cf. Portuguese dois, duas < Old Portuguese dous, duas < *do.os (do.us?), *du.as. Also, Old French deus "two" must reflect Early Old French dous. The diphthong is probably original: French does have /o/ > /ou/ > /eu/ but normally only in open syllables.
Benwing (talk) 23:15, 16 December 2013 (UTC)
But there are a couple of nominative forms preserved at least in Spanish: see here. Thus Ibero-Romance must have preserved the two-case system, only not as long as the north. Therefore the reason for assuming Church Latin influence in Portuguese deus evaporates. Correct?
Awesome, thank you for sharing your knowledge of medieval Romance forms. Shouldn't PWR nom. *-us, acc. *-u be reconstructed as nom. *-os, acc. *-u (from PR nom. *-us, acc. *)? I thought the development PR short *u > PWR *o had no exceptions. Do you know the origin of Spanish mi, tu, su? --Florian Blaschke (talk) 14:12, 25 January 2014 (UTC)
Wow, that's a truly obscure reference! Kudos for finding it. But I'm skeptical of the examples. The word "sastre" is claimed here to be a borrowing from Occitan [15], where the nominative would be more expected. The word "cardo" (presumably meaning "main street" as in Latin?) is I assume a borrowing from Latin -- this does not appear to be a common word, and in general, only third-declension nominatives of nouns referring to people were preserved in French and Occitan and I assume the same must have applied in Proto-Romance. Names seem like a special case, and I think it's hard to extrapolate from them. I suppose the argument is possible that "dios" comes from a vocative form like the name nominatives might, although this seems a small thread to hang on in that no other non-proper-name words have apparently survived in the nominative in Spanish or Portuguese. In French, where unquestionably a nom/acc declension system survived past the Proto-Romance stage, we have a number of modern words that reflect the nominative case (soeur, fils, prêtre, sire, etc.), and you'd expect the same in Spanish. Note that Spanish even has accusative-case words that reflect a synthesized accusative in the case of third-declension neuters where the accusative was the same as the nominative: hence lumbre "light" < *luminem (Latin lumen), vs. Portuguese lume < lumen. Note also the preserved nominatives in Italian uomo, moglie vs. Spanish accusative-derived hombre, mujer. Benwing (talk) 02:14, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
The accusative meum still had both the diphthong and final -m preserved in early Old French meon (Strasbourg oaths). It's interesting what this tells us: single-syllable words are the only place where final -m was preserved, so that means that it was a monosyllable with a single diphthong in the form of Vulgar Latin that gave rise to Old French, not a two-vowel sequence. CodeCat (talk) 02:24, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
I also noticed that the nominative is preserved further down as meos, but the third-person possessive appears as son < suum. So it looks like the diphthong was initially preserved in the first-person form, and then some languages levelled this out to the other persons in one way or the other: French ton, son > mon; Catalan also this but also has parallel forms with the opposite levelling, meu > teu, seu. Spanish has mio > tuyo, suyo alongside apocopated mi, tu, su. CodeCat (talk) 02:38, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
@CodeCat: I suppose meon also could be a mixture of mon (< unstressed mum) with *meo (< stressed meum). However, the derivation of Spanish mi (see below) and the Portuguese form meu both suggest a diphthong. It's possible that meos vs. son is just a random case of strong vs. weak forms; both forms were evidently preserved in French at this point, and continued into Old Occitan. Benwing (talk) 02:43, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
Apparently, Old Catalan still had mia, tua, sua for the feminine forms. These have now been analogically replaced. I think it's telling that there was a doublet of masculine meu (preserved) versus feminine mia. The situation for Old Spanish could have been much the same. Catalan kept eu as a diphthong because it occurred in many other words, but Spanish didn't allow such a diphthong. So that might have led to pressure for modifying it in some way, which then led to the change eu > disyllabic io. The same happened to dios < deus as well. Portuguese, on the other hand, does have eu as a normal diphthong, like Catalan, thus meu and deus. So I think there's a regular pan-West-Romance sound change here: e becomes i before any vowel that it can't coalesce with into a diphthong. Different languages had different diphthongs by that point, so they have different developments. CodeCat (talk) 03:09, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
I found more that supports this. The Old Catalan second and third-person forms were tou and sou, which also directly reflect the Latin forms. There is again a doublet, masculine tou and feminine tua. So I think the rule may even be more general: mid vowels become high when they come before a vowel that they can't form a diphthong with (keep in mind that Vulgar Latin short u was /o/). In Spanish this happened to the masculine as well, because Spanish didn't have an ou diphthong: *tou > tu. CodeCat (talk) 03:16, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
In answer to your other question, final short -u may have become PWR u not o. This is what I've heard. Although I can't provide a source for it.
Also, mi < older mio < *mieu < *mɛu < meum. A rule in Spanish and French (also Italian in many cases, but not in some Old French dialects or Occitan, I think) deleted the middle of three vowels in a row. tu and su similarly. This also explains yo < *io < *ieo < *ɛo < ego (the loss of g is evidently pan-Romance except some Sardinian dialects, which have forms like dego). Benwing (talk) 02:22, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
But Catalan also has jo and (in Old Catalan) mia, even though it doesn't have the e > ie change. So there was never a miea or ieo stage in Catalan. I think for Catalan it's more economical to assume a direct change e > i before a vowel that it couldn't form a diphthong with. CodeCat (talk) 05:05, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, forms like miei are actually found in Italian, and forms like mieu and ieu are found in Old Occitan. Ralph Penny's A History of the Spanish Language suggests that Spanish mío < mió < *mɛu by a regular sound change that eliminated *eu, *iu, and *oi diphthongs (cf. Portuguese respondeu "he responded" vs. Spanish respondió, Portuguese viviu [viˈviw] "he lived" vs. Spanish vivió, likewise Portuguese coiro vs. Spanish cuero). The change mió > mío is explained by analogy to mía, which is due to dissimilation, with *mɛa raised to mea (found in some Old Romance languages?) and again to mia. Same change took place in Portuguese, which has meu vs. minha, teu/seu vs. tua/sua. So evidently there's more than one phenomenon going on here. Benwing (talk) 07:32, 26 January 2014 (UTC)

Sicilian vowel system[edit]

Sicilian vowel system seems to imply that a Romance language with a Sardinian-type vowel system was spoken in Sicily (and perhaps on mainland Southern Italy) as late as the 13th century. I wonder what exactly this means. I think this could be connected to the Sardinian-type dialects of the Lausberg Zone, although it is still a mystery to me if these dialects are Italo-Romance or "Southern Romance" in origin. This "Sardo-Sicilian" could have been analogous (or it could have come about as a purely written phenomenon, through speakers of Sardinian-type dialects who attempted to write Sicilian but were influenced by their native language). The most straightforward and satisfying scenario would envision "Southern Romance" dialects resembling Sardinian in much of Southern Italy, (presumably) Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica (perhaps Northern Africa and Malta as well) by the early medieval period. These dialects could have acted as a substratum on Sicilian and other Italo-Romance dialects of Southern Italy. A substratum language with a five-vowel system would straightforwardly explain the mergers that led from a regular Italo-Romance dialect like Neapolitan to the Sicilian vowel system. This could also explain other features (such as retroflex consonants and substratum vocabulary of unclear orgin) in which Sicilian resembles Sardinian (despite being Italo-Romance itself, much like modern Corsican, presumably including Gallurese and Sassarese). Of course, it is well possible that the simple quantity merger that led to the Sardinian vowel system, which is the primary characteristic and innovation of "Southern Romance", was ultimately due to Greek influence. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 18:26, 14 December 2013 (UTC)

Actually, it is not even clear whether the mentioned thirteenth-century texts are from Sicily, the mainland, or both. It seems perfectly possible that they reflect Sardinian-type Lausberg Zone dialects from the mainland, or their indirect influence (if these dialects are strictly speaking "Southern Romance" at all), since the Sardinian-type Lausberg Zone dialects appear to me to like Southern Italo-Romance dialects with a Sardinian-type, "Southern Romance" vowel system and perhaps other characteristics of Sardinian such as the retention of word-final -t, but obviously not all characteristics of "Southern Romance" (such as the failure to palatalise the velars or metathesise word-final -or and -er), because they would simply be "Southern Romance" in that case. That said, doesn't Campidanese have the mainland palatalisation and metathesis too? This is confusing ... --Florian Blaschke (talk) 18:45, 14 December 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure what these 13th century texts look like. Normally the Sicilian vowel system is derived from the standard seven-vowel PWR system. Campidanese palatalization and metathesis was apparently due to heavy Tuscan influence, spreading out from the city of Cagliari. See here: [16] Voicing of intervocalic stops is probably due to later Catalan influence. Very early Sardinian documents indicate that the conservative Nuorese dialect (no palatalization, no intervocalic voicing) was spoken all over Sardinia (and Corsica) prior to the influence of other Romance languages.
I'd believe that Sicilian has a substratum that is shared with Sardinian and other Southern Italian dialects (some of which also have retroflex ḍḍ). Some people claim this substratum is Oscan, although Greek influence is certainly also a possibility. The origin of the Lausberg zone is unclear but it could simply reflect early settlement of "Southern Romance" speakers from elsewhere (e.g. North Africa). Possibly the development of the Sardinian and North African vowel systems were independent: Early Latin apparently pronounced its short and long vowels with the same quality (this is noted in Ringe's newest book). Only later did quality differences appear, and quite likely simply never spread to Sardinia and North Africa. Subsequent loss of vowel length can have been independent or due to general areal developments across the entire Romance-speaking area. Benwing (talk) 23:37, 16 December 2013 (UTC)
Fascinating. But this would make the split of Mainland from Southern Romance (which could easily be a paraphyletic group) quite early, right? Thus pushing back the date for Proto-Romance. How old is Proto-Romance, then? (If nom. pl. *-ās, as noted in Romance plurals#Origin of plural -s, is indeed an archaism, this would, along with the occasional appearance of specifically Mainland or Italo-/Western-Romance traits in Pompejan and other Imperial Latin inscriptions, such as Z for /j/ and the disappearance or assimilation of final /t/, make the traditional view that Romance as a whole evolved from post-classical or "Vulgar" Latin, in any case something substantially younger than Classical Latin, finally obsolete). I thought e for short i was sometimes already attested in Old Latin inscriptions, implying that the quality split (short vowel laxing/centralisation) has a considerable age.
As for the ḍḍ, I believe having read that this was originally retroflex ḷḷ, but yes, this is certainly one of the Sardinian-like traits of Sicilian I've thought of, too.
So, how should Lausberg zone dialects be classified then? Italo-Romance or not? I've read that there are not only Lausberg zone dialects with a Sardinian-type vowel system, but even some with Romanian-type mergers. How could that be explained? --Florian Blaschke (talk) 14:42, 25 January 2014 (UTC)
My proposal is simply that Sicilian is a language much like Corsican, directly descending from Italo-Romance (but a southern rather than northern/central variety) but strongly influenced by a substratum resembling Old Sardinian (and thus Nuorese), perhaps already on the mainland (and spreading to Sicily only later, in the 11th century or so). By the way, even if Old Sardinian and North African Romance evolved separately, both areas too shared some historical and linguistic aspects, such as the Punic influence, and other North African adstrata (Berber, and possibly others). --Florian Blaschke (talk) 15:10, 25 January 2014 (UTC)
There are words in Spanish that pre-date Classical Latin (cueva "cave" < Old Latin cova, cf. Classical cava), and a bunch of words in Sardinian that stem from were already obsolete in Classical times. In the Harris/Vincent "Romance languages" it's claimed that Sardinian may have split off as early as the 1st century BC. The claim that Proto-Romance cannot be derived completely from Classical Latin is common BTW.
I don't know about e for short i; perhaps you're thinking of cases like Old Latin deicō > dēcō (with a high-mid vowel, distinct from low-mid /ɛ:/ reflecting PIE *ē) > dīcō. Or cases where unstressed e hasn't yet been raised to i.
Indeed ḍḍ was almost certainly ḷḷ at one point since it stems from Latin ll. A similar change is found in certain parts of Northern Spain, and certain other phonological and lexical characteristics are also shared between this region and parts of southern Italy, suggesting a movement of colonists or something. As for Corsican, I've heard it was once almost identical to Old Sardinian but has seen extensive later influence from elsewhere. As for the Lausberg Zone, I can't say. Benwing (talk) 02:32, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
Since Classical Latin is a standardised written language and to a considerable extent artificial (one may think only of spelling pronunciations and restitutions such as of /h/), there is no question that Proto-Romance cannot be derived from it. However, the common idea is that Proto-Romance is younger than Classical Latin, possibly several centuries. And that is evidently not the case. It seems to have been more or less contemporary with Classical Latin (if not older), possibly a parallel development from Old Latin. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 03:28, 26 January 2014 (UTC)

December 2013[edit]

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Selig[edit]

Hi Benwing, you wrote on my talk page. Please note that I always respond in the same place. --Doric Loon (talk) 13:23, 21 December 2013 (UTC)

Selig[edit]

Hi Benwing, you wrote on my talk page. Please note that I always respond in the same place. --Doric Loon (talk) 13:23, 21 December 2013 (UTC)

Silesian language[edit]

Could you please help on this?--Sobiepan (talk) 01:00, 22 January 2014 (UTC)

Administrator explicitly said that you should calmly discuss, the revert in this edit-war leads to blockage account. Franek K. (talk) 01:20, 22 January 2014 (UTC)

Italian dunque and Spanish nunca[edit]

Italian dunque, per Romance plurals#Origin of vocalic plurals from PR */dunkwās/, and Spanish nunca, per Old Spanish language#Morphology and syntax from Old Spanish nunqua, besides which nunquas (interestingly parallel to the mysterious -s ending in *dunquas! Perhaps nunquas is worth a mention in Romance plurals) is attested, both represent an additional puzzle to me: why no change of PR short /u/ to PIWR /o/? Wouldn't the expected outcomes be **donque and **nonca? --Florian Blaschke (talk) 15:41, 25 January 2014 (UTC)

@Florian Blaschke: Indeed this is unexpected. Cf. Old French onques < umquam -- again with unexpected final -s. It's possible it's an effect of the [ŋ]. This had the effect of raising vowels in Latin (cf. lingua < dingua < *dengwā < *dṇghwā where *en is the expected Latin outcome of *ṇ), and this effect may have operated intermittently in some Proto-Romance dialects. Or conceivably it's assimilation to the following /w/ -- who knows?
Note that Spanish is generally more likely than other languages to manifest PWR /o/ < Latin short /u/ as /u/; often this is triggered by a following palatal consonant, which also raises other vowels. But sometimes the origin is mysterious, cf. Spanish gustar < gustāre with short /u/, where Portuguese has gostar and French goûter < (not *gûter). French almost never shows this unexpected raising of PWR /o/ or /e/. Other cases are Spanish dulce vs. Portuguese doce, French douce, Italian dolce; Spanish/Portuguese cruz vs. French croix, Italian croce (in this case cruz is thought to be a Church Latin borrowing); Spanish hígado, Portuguese fígado, Italian ficato vs. French foie, where only French has the expected vowel < Latin fĭcus + -ātum. Benwing (talk) 21:57, 25 January 2014 (UTC)

Latin regional pronunciation[edit]

Could you comment on User talk:Florian Blaschke#Latin regional pronunciation? --Florian Blaschke (talk) 15:46, 25 January 2014 (UTC)

Proto-Italic language[edit]

I started off this article. I don't know if it's sourced well enough, and it may be hard to find sources for some of it because so many sources discuss only Latin and ignore Italic in general. CodeCat (talk) 00:22, 5 February 2014 (UTC)

Apex in Middle Vietnamese[edit]

Hi Benwing, I recall that you helped to get the "B with flourish" character into the forthcoming Unicode release. The Vietnamese Wikisource community is working to digitize Alexandre de Rhodes' Dictionarium Annamiticum Lusitanum et Latinum, and your contributions toward this topic are much appreciated. Recently an editor asked me about some diacritics I had taken for breves; they turned out to be apices by de Rhodes' description. I know no Latin, but the paragraph that opens with "Tertium..." seems to emphasize that this orthography distinguishes between the acute (described in the preceding chapter) and the apex. Do you think it would be appropriate to represent apices in this text with acutes, or would a different/new Unicode character be more appropriate? – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 09:30, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

One Vietnamese translation of the dictionary calls it dấu lưỡi câu. In both the original and this translation, the diacritic is rendered much like an tildebreve rotated 30° CCW. – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 10:06, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

You might want to ask Michael Everson (User:Evertype) since he is the one who actually submitted the "B with flourish". However, from the description on the apex (diacritic) page, it sounds like the usage of this is much like the horn diacritic in modern Vietnamese on o's and u's, making them unrounded. Is there a difference in de Rhodes' book between the horn and apex diacritics? Also check out the sicilicus diacritic, which is related to the apex and has a separate representation in Unicode (although granted it doesn't look much like how you describe de Rhodes' apex). Benwing (talk) 21:30, 13 February 2014 (UTC)
It's odd that the chapter doesn't mention the horn, which also only appears on the letters O and U. But in the rest of the dictionary, the horn and apex look quite different from each other: the horn is to the right, even lower than in modern typefaces, whereas the apex sits above the vowel, where a tilde would rest. It actually looks a bit like U+1DC4 "◌᷄". Compare the headwords "thường" (horns) and "thu᷄ thúc" (apex+accute) and the word "dữ" (tilde; left column, third line from the bottom) on page 787–8 of de Rhodes' dictionary. – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 09:50, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
Adding to my confusion, the Vietnamese translation dấu lưỡi câu means "fishhook", as does the usual term for the horn, dấu móc. Yet there is a clear visual difference. – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 10:17, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
Apex on top, horn to the right

I've updated "Apex (diacritic)" with some examples showing that the apex is indeed a distinct diacritic. Here's another that shows the difference between the apex and the horn. Most likely, de Rhodes considered the horn to be merely a part of the letters Ơ and Ư, rather than a diacritic in its own right, just like the stroke in Đ or the flourish on B. – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 06:46, 17 February 2014 (UTC)

You should update the Latin text by including more of the quote. The quote by itself about it being pronounced by neither touching the lips nor the palate, in conjunction with an o or u, sounds like an unrounded vowel (although the business about the palate is odd), which is why I thought it might be the same as the horn. But the wider quote makes clear that it actually indicated nasalization. In the paragraph he says
The third sign, finally, is the apex, which in this language is entirely necessary because of a difference in the ending [i.e. of a word], which the apex makes entirely distinct from the ending that m or n makes, with a meaning entirely diverse in words in which it is employed. However, this sign, namely the apex, only affects o and u, at the end of a word, as ao "bee", ou "grandfather" or "lord". It is pronounced, however, such that neither the lips touch together nor the tongue touches the palate.
This is my literal translation, and may be wrong in spots.
Your sample texts appear to have a final -ng in some words, which suggests that Middle Vietnamese had nasal vowels distinct from final /ŋ/, but later they merged. However, it would be interesting if there are words ending in -ong or -ung in his dictionary, which would show that nasalization was actually phonemic.
I think probably your choice of the macron-acute diacritic is probably a suitable compromise and it's probably not necessary to add a diacritic simply for this one situation, but you could ask Michael Everson and see what he says. I'm not sure what the rules are for diacritics. I would guess the basic rule is that diacritics don't have pre-defined semantics and new ones need to be added primarily when either there isn't any existing diacritic that looks similar to a new one or the new one and similar existing one can both be used in the same or similar contexts with differing meanings. Benwing (talk) 02:03, 19 February 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for the translation; it makes a lot of sense now. I have yet to encounter -ong or -ung in either the dictionary or de Rhodes's other works. (He wrote many religious texts in this orthography.) The macron-acute suffices at very small sizes, but it's angled, whereas the apex is curved. I think it's unlikely de Rhodes intended it to be a macron joined to an acute. – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 10:24, 19 February 2014 (UTC)

Franco-Provençal language[edit]

Since you are so well-versed in Old French and the like, I should be justified in expecting you to be reasonably well acquainted with medieval French literature as well. Do you happen to know which of the two early rhymed works on Girart de Roussillon is in a dialect which is either midway between Old French and Old Occitan or an early form of Franco-Provençal? (By the way, my general impression of Franco-Provençal is that it is significantly closer to French than it is to Occitan. Old French and Old Occitan are clearly distinguishable, but the medieval samples of Franco-Provençal look almost identical to Old French.) --Florian Blaschke (talk) 19:43, 15 February 2014 (UTC)

Alas I don't know that much about medieval French literature; mostly I study the language itself. Can you quote any segments of the two? If so I might be able to guess what language each one is in. I don't know that much about Franco-Provençal but you're right that it looks rather like French although perhaps with northern Italian influence (the preservation of masculine -o is particularly surprising). It also looks like a mess of quite distinct dialects. But also keep in mind that some Occitan dialects e.g. Auvernhat look a lot more like French than the conservative Languedocien accent that underlies the modern standard. Some have nasal vowels, uvular r, cha in place of ca, etc. (although I don't know how much of this was already around in Old Occitan times and how much is a later dialect transfer from nearby French dialects). Benwing (talk) 02:19, 19 February 2014 (UTC)
The fact that the -o is so frequently absent (even where there is no reason to consider Standard French influence likely) and that it is most frequently found after sequences of stop + liquid, even when it is etymologically unexpected, such as in Grenoblo, dessanbro or ancro, is highly suspicious: it makes me wonder if it is not merely a development of the supporting schwa as found in Old French, rather than a retention. Phonological history of Catalan (I think the content is mostly yours) mentions the parallel phenomenon in Catalan of -o-endings that etymologically unjustified examples such as peixos reveal as probably secondary. Therefore I harbour the distinct impression that Franco-Provençal diverged from French no earlier than after the cha-type palatalisation had taken place, which even Northern Oil lacks, making Franco-Provençal appear closer to Standard French than even Northern Oil and thus itself part of the Oil branch. If so, it is merely a group of Oil dialects that went its own distinct ways. In any case, the evidence from medieval and modern Franco-Provençal dialects is no doubt highly important for the study of the development of French. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 14:03, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
As for Occitan, chantar (etc.) is apparently already attested besides cantar (etc.) in the Old Occitan period, even in Provençal I think, but that doesn't mean that this cannot be due to influence from Oil or Franco-Provençal. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 14:10, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
It's true about the -o being absent although examples like "codo" and "olyo" are suspicious for the theory that -o comes simply from a secondary supporting vowel. Benwing (talk) 08:17, 22 June 2014 (UTC)

February 2014[edit]

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Phonological history of French[edit]

Hello. I see that you are the main contributor to Phonological history of French. That article is very useful, but currently only has one source listed. Could you please add more references? (suoı̣ʇnqı̣ɹʇuoɔ · ʞlɐʇ) nɯnuı̣ɥԀ 22:59, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

The same holds for Romanian and, to a lesser degree, Catalan. Thank you. (suoı̣ʇnqı̣ɹʇuoɔ · ʞlɐʇ) nɯnuı̣ɥԀ 23:06, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

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Old English palatalisation[edit]

In the article, you wrote that it must be ordered after a-restoration. But at the same time, it's very unlikely that the change happened in the exact same way in Frisian. So the reality is more likely that the change did happen in Anglo-Frisian as a whole, but that it was still allophonically conditioned at the time a-restoration took place. Similar considerations probably apply to i-mutation as well, which likely had its seeds sown already in Northwest Germanic times. CodeCat (talk) 12:57, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Sure ... this sounds reasonable to me. Another possibility is that Anglo-Frisian had split up already by 400 AD or so, and palatalization happened c. 450 AD as the Angles passed through Frisian territory on their way to England, i.e. there were areal influences. And almost certainly i-mutation was already present in allophonic form by the time the Anglo-Saxons came to England, although it may have spread areally from the original area of the Angles (which appear to have i-mutation earliest and most completely) to the north and south. But in any case, from a historical linguistic perspective what matters is when these things became phonologized. Benwing (talk) 21:11, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
I don't think that the Anglo-Saxons could have adopted a Frisian sound change en masse as they passed through the territory. The migration could hardly have taken more than a year for any single speaker, if you assume that they were headed for Britain specifically and not just trying to settle westwards. In fact they could have easily embarked directly from their homelands and never encountered any Frisians. CodeCat (talk) 22:45, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
I don't know the exact story well but I vaguely recall other people having suggested also that some sound changes may have occurred as the Anglo-Saxons passed through Frisian territory, which suggests to me that they may have stayed awhile. It's quite possible, e.g., that there was a mass migration to Frisia and some time later (perhaps a generation or more later) another mass migration to Britain. Lots of groups followed this exact pattern. The Hungarians, for example, picked up lots of vocabulary from all manner of languages as they gradually migrated from the Ural Mountains to Hungary. In any case, this is largely speculative ... Benwing (talk) 04:09, 31 March 2014 (UTC)

March 2014[edit]

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April 2014[edit]

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Reference Errors on 4 May[edit]

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