User talk:CapnPrep

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The expression "conditional mood" in English grammar?[edit]

"In English, the conditional mood is a compound verb form consisting of the modal auxiliary verb would (or could, might, should) and the infinitive form of the main verb."

Isn't this suggestion that there is a conditional mood in English somewhat contrary to modern grammatical analyses? The various grammars I use (Quirk and several pedagogical texts) do not introduce such an expression. Furthermore, the first line of the article seems to imply that conditional mood and conditional tense are one and the same. Again, grammars do not show a conditional tense in their verb conjugations. Would it not be better and more accurate to say that in English in a clause expressing a condition the verb group takes a particular form involving a modal auxiliary.

That is more or less fine with me — go ahead and edit the article! (And start a discussion on the talk page over there.) "Conditional tense" was definitely not my idea. And in English, whatever you want to call this compound verb form, it is mostly used in the clause expressing the result, not the condition. CapnPrep 00:51, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

help needed[edit]

Hi. I'm looking for a linguist to add some rational input on Wikipedia:Categories_for_deletion/Log/2006_November_1#Category:Finland-Swedish. More specifically, i'm hoping you can help prevent someone who's either a hyphen fetishist or perhaps just loves debating from making WP disregard established usage among English-speaking linguists. Thanks! --Espoo 16:20, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

Hmm, I'm kind-of a hyphen-fetishist myself… Actually, I do agree with you about dropping the hyphen here, but it looks like this particular debate has gone beyond the "rational input" stage. CapnPrep 15:14, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
Well, we can't have the category spelled differently than the article, so either one has to be changed. Would you be willing to add a comment saying that as a linguist you would use what apparently almost all your colleagues who are native English speakers use to designate this language, namely "Finland Swedish" without a hyphen? In fact, as the links i provided show, English-speaking linguists don't use a hyphen even in "Finland Swedish dialects".
Am i correct in believing that most double-barreled language names never get "language" glued on? --Espoo 17:29, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
I actually know one Swedish-speaking Finn who is also a linguist who works on the languages of Finland, so this would be the person to listen to. And it turns out that they feel exactly the same way about it as I do: "I don't know! And, as you know, I really really don't care! I guess I would write it without the hyphen, maybe." And having looked more closely at the discussion, I would tempted to vote for the "Category:Finland-Swedish language" proposal (sorry). I would prefer it without the hyphen, but what can you do. It's a good compromise. And as you all have noticed, there is no coherent naming policy for these categories on WP, but there is a definite tendency to include "language" systematically (and as for double-barreled names, I know of at least Category:Scottish Gaelic language and Category:Old English language). CapnPrep 21:58, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
I can understand that many linguists don't really care about spelling issues due to the modern professional attitude towards language variation and prefer to leave those discussions to less scientific and more dogmatic minds, but i'm quite sure that this does not normally extend to the technical terms linguists use because these are professional tools, and all professionals want to standardise these. (In addition, linguists in many countries have realised their social responsibility in helping to update many languages' hopelessly outdated spelling "systems" that have been naively sanctified due to linguistic misconceptions and cause incredible amounts of personal suffering and social injustice.) It's senseless to repeatedly spend time on thinking about how to spell basic terms in one's profession, and the problems caused by databases and lists not being consistent (in many languages, entries are listed differently depending on hyphenation!) adds to the nuisance.
In addition, as i pointed out in the discussion and hinted at above, the spellings "Finland-Swedish" and "Finland-Swedish dialects" seem to occur only in texts by linguists who are not native English speakers, so i'm quite sure that their English spelling habits are influenced by language interference. Nevertheless, i'm sure that none of them would add a hyphen to terms like "UK English", "US English", or "Quebec French" that they have not seen spelled as often or more often by non-native speakers (as is the case with the many texts by Finnish and Swedish linguists on this topic).
Generally speaking, i'm all for compromises, but i don't think it's a good idea adding "language" to double-barreled language names unless necessary. In fact, i believe that the addition should be made even to single-noun names only where necessary. I believe that the misnomers "Swedish language" and "Scottish Gaelic language" were caused by illogical reference to "English", which can mean more than the language. It seems that "Swedish" as a noun cannot mean anything except the language since the people are called "Swedes" by all native English speakers. It would seem that the same is true of "Gaelic", but i haven't studied that situation yet. It would seem best to take "language" off of the article and category Swedish language and all other language articles that only seemingly correspond to "English" and its ambivalence. Due to the clumsiness of names with many parts, this is especially true in the case of double-barreled language names that are not ambivalent. Do you know any triple-barreled language names? --Espoo 06:16, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Wiktionary POS discussion[edit]

Over on Wiktionary, there is a discussion about "part of speech" headings/categories. Your assistance in explaining things would be appreciated.--BrettR 00:56, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

Hi, I am not familiar with Wiktionary, but I had a look and the treatment of these substantivized adjectives is indeed wildly inconsistent across languages (and sometimes simply incorrect: e.g. for English, undead is listed as an uncountable noun). But everyone involved in the discussion seems to be on the same page, so I don't see what things need explaining? CapnPrep 17:17, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

Adposition[edit]

This article is great. --Kooky (talk) 00:17, 12 January 2007 (UTC)

I can't take all the credit, but thank you! Drop by anytime! CapnPrep 00:43, 12 January 2007 (UTC)
The article you came up with has been thoroughly criticized by many users at Talk:Adposition, and for good reasons. I have scanned the article and I found at least two grammatically incorrect examples of Chinese and Japanese, and some of the examples actually seem somewhat dubious (though I don't know enough of the topic to feel I should put a fact-tag up). But most importantly, it's so convoluted and tries to say so much in such an unstructured form that it's hopeless for most readers to get through even part of it.
And please note that I'm a lingonerd myself and currently a student of linguistics at Stockholm university, so it's not just a problem for non-aficionados.
Peter Isotalo 12:40, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
Feel free to do whatever you like with the page, obviously. Good luck with your studies. CapnPrep 19:27, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Determiners[edit]

I've split the determiner page into one for the word class and one for the function in phrase structure. Any thoughts you might have on it would be welcome.--BrettR 18:24, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

It seems to me like one article was enough, mostly devoted to the syntactic category, and pointing to discussion of determiner function that could be located in the existing stubs Noun phrase and/or Determiner phrase. And "(class)" and "(function)" don't adhere to any established conventions for bracketed article names, do they? CapnPrep 13:18, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

aggression, agression[edit]

The French word "non-agression" that appears in Liaison (French) is spelled correctly, and should not be changed to (English) "non-aggression". If this is a problem, I can just replace it with another example or delete it (it's actually commented out at the moment, so it wouldn't make much difference). CapnPrep 21:08, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Sorry for that. I didn't look closely enough at the context and assumed it was meant to be English. I've made a note of it so I won't miscorrect it again. Cheers, CmdrObot 22:07, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

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Maundy Thursday - German word "Gründonnerstag"[edit]

Thank you for accomodating my changes (IP 217.233.42.121) to english language - I'm german and not so familiar with it. But there is one small thing I would like to change: There is no evidence for the existance of green vestments on maundy thursday, so it's just a hypothesis as another name for Gründonnerstag is white thursday - this does derive from the mass vestments - and observance/custom was quite regional in older Germany. FZiegler 10:50, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

Gender in English[edit]

Thanks for the references. You cut and pasted them from JStor? How? So quickly? Not typed? Thanks again. Alastair Haines 22:31, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

redirects[edit]

FUI. When creating/editing a redirect it is often makes sense to leave the edit summary empty. Then the history will show the default text, eg. "redirected to Coordination (linguistics)", see eg history of Subordination (linguistics). And while I am at this, I'd like to ask you to write a real article for Subordination (linguistics).

P.S. OK I concocted it myself. Please check for blunders (in particluar, whether Subordinator (grammar) is proper redirect). Me ain't no none expert. `'mikka 21:32, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Some related rant: I wasted,like, 12 hours, to nail down disambig issues with "coordination" (and not finished yet), and I am surprized to see that "subordination" seems to have far less mess. `'mikka 19:22, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for spending so much time on this. I'll have a look at the new Subordination (linguistics) page. CapnPrep 22:28, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Grammatical gender[edit]

You were quite right about that sentence. Thanks for having the patience to explain why. FilipeS 17:42, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

You're welcome. Looking forward to continued collaboration. CapnPrep 18:48, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

You deserve this[edit]

Rosetta Barnstar.png The Rosetta Barnstar
For your exceptionally fine contributions in the field of linguistics, and particularly your work on the Dual (grammatical number) article.
Duja 09:54, 7 May 2007 (UTC)
Oh wow, I have tears in (both) my eyes… Thank you! CapnPrep 13:46, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

Lorraine (province)[edit]

You had previously commented on the idea of merging Duchy of Lorraine there. Please check out a draft I made of what that would look like. Tocharianne 16:07, 14 July 2007 (UTC)

Old french[edit]

Sorry guy, I was wrong; all my apologizes Saintongese (talk) 13:31, 23 February 2008 (UTC)

Question for you[edit]

Hi, I was wondering about the warning that you left for an IP address earlier today. It seems that who ever had that IP address this morning had the same one I have now. (witch isn't suprising seeing that I'm at a college) My question is can IP's really be banned? I ask as I couldn't even get to wikipedia's site until a few minutes ago.

I just want to say again that vandal was not me, I just got that you have a new message tag before I logged in and saw it. Thanks! Ayls (talk) 20:11, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

Yes, IPs can be blocked. But as I understand it, this only means you can't edit pages; you should still be able to access the site. And if you log in as a registered user from that IP address, you can still make edits (unless of course your username is also blocked). Have fun. CapnPrep (talk) 20:18, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

User:CapnPrep#topics[edit]

Could you turn your topics into links??? Peter Horn 00:26, 10 March 2008 (UTC)

I could. Should I? CapnPrep (talk) 05:57, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

Deletion of Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique[edit]

OK, will do, hope will be correct, am a new user. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jessika Folkerts (talkcontribs) 08:22, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

Transwiki complete[edit]

I've just completed the transwiki of CRFL (CaReFuL mnemonic) to b:Transwiki:CRFL (CaReFuL mnemonic). Thanks. --Swift (talk) 06:05, 15 February 2009 (UTC)

roots and stems[edit]

Hi -- sorry it took me a while to respond to your remark about roots and stems -- here's my response. Joriki (talk) 13:31, 22 March 2009 (UTC)

use of the term "stem"[edit]

Hi CapnPrep -- you participated in a discussion at Talk:Affix#stem or root -- I added a comment on a change I've made to the article on word stem; your feedback would be much appreciated. Joriki (talk) 21:37, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

unaccusative[edit]

Could you please have a look at unaccusative verb? Thank you. --Austrian (talk) 09:08, 12 August 2009 (UTC)

Discuss Canal du midi w/ Nancy?[edit]

I just started this discussion with Nancy and thought you might be interested? User_talk:Nancy#Another_Canal_du_Midi_page GloverEpp (talk) 14:47, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

Thanks. I'll have a look, but I'm not actively involved in that topic; I was just doing some orphan-wlinking. It looks like the article is is good hands now. CapnPrep (talk) 14:56, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

Minor edits[edit]

OK. I think you'll find I give reasons for most of them, unless my finger slips on the key. I move along so fast I scarcely notice. Most of the articles I work on need major edits. I avoid working on good articles. One spends more time on the ones that need help. I can make more of an effort not to use the "quick" key. Thanks.Dave (talk) 23:41, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

Romanism[edit]

The political term wqould also appear to be a dicdef - a word, not a subject. Really the painters are the only subject associated with the term, and should have the plain title, with a hatnote to the political stuff, moved into some appropriate article like Anti-Catholicism. Johnbod (talk) 02:30, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

I agree with you, but I'd rather leave the moving and merging to someone who is familiar with those articles. I only landed on this page by accident, and noticed it was a mess. CapnPrep (talk) 03:40, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
Ok, I'll copy these to the talk, & maybe do it some time. Johnbod (talk) 04:51, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

French alphabet[edit]

Thanx for your help. The table was not clear, now it's better. Wiktionary link are better in footnote too. But i didn't undertstand : "unnecessary remark about stylistic ligatures". Did you need a reference ? What do you think about speaking of the ſ in the article ? Cdlt, VIGNERON * discut. 10:30, 14 January 2010 (UTC)

I mean that things like fi and st are not really part of the alphabet, but part of typographic practice. As far as I know, they are not mentioned in English alphabet or other articles in this category. The article also doesn't (and shouldn't) cover French handwriting styles, for example.
Similarly, I think ſ is a matter of typography, but if you have some sources about its use, I guess I would find it more relevant (along with discussion of "u"/"v" and "i"/"j", and the development of the accents). But I think some of this historical information may be more appropriately added to French orthography. CapnPrep (talk) 18:38, 14 January 2010 (UTC)
Ok, I understand your point of view. But I'm not really agree, the typograpic information seems better too me in French alphabet than French orthography. I don't speak about orthotypogray (like the "lettre ramiste") but pure typography (the existence and the history of a letter) like ſ.
As you can see, I don't speak english very well and don't know some vocabulary. How did you say "lettre ramiste" in English ? Is there a word like orthotypograhy in English ? Cdlt, VIGNERON * discut. 09:54, 15 January 2010 (UTC)
Je vois que tu parles français, ça sera plus simple pour moi. Moi par contre, je ne parle pas bien l'anglais, sorry.
Je veux bien mettre le s long dans French orthography mais je ne vois pas dans quelle section en parler. Idem pour les ligatures esthétiques.
Pour moi, ces glyphes semblent être des lettres de l'alphabet à part entière (avec leur propre plomb et maintenant leur propre code Unicode).
Cdlt, VIGNERON * discut. 09:50, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

You are now a reviewer[edit]

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Talk:Old French#Adjective[edit]

Please review this, thanks. Mglovesfun (talk) 17:37, 14 February 2011 (UTC)

OK, I'll have a look. CapnPrep (talk) 23:40, 14 February 2011 (UTC)

Speedy deletion converted to PROD: English Alphabet meanings[edit]

Hello CapnPrep. I am just letting you know that I have converted the speedy deletion tag that you placed on English Alphabet meanings to a proposed deletion tag, because I do not believe CSD applies to the page in question. Thank you. — Malik Shabazz Talk/Stalk 03:11, 13 April 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for attending to this. I hesitated between CSD and PROD for OR, so I defer to your judgment. Would you mind having a look at Special:Contributions/Goldendirt to see if any further action might be called for? In particular, I think that their user talk page should be unredirected (but I don't want to mess around in someone else's user space myself), and I have been watching this user's 30+ consecutive edits to Talk:Preposition and postposition with some unease (but I don't what, if anything, to do about it). CapnPrep (talk) 03:55, 13 April 2012 (UTC)
Wow. I undid the changes to Talk:Preposition and postposition. I replaced the redirect on the user's Talk page with the PROD notification. We'll see how things progress. Definitely an editor to keep an eye on. Face-smile.svg — Malik Shabazz Talk/Stalk 04:19, 13 April 2012 (UTC)

sourcing Germanic table[edit]

[regarding the removal of content from Germanic languages]

If I have "never responded appropriately" in the past it's because I haven't noticed such tags. I don't have a lot of time to review all my past changes; I'd appreciate it in general if you leave a message rather than just deleting stuff.

What kind of sources do you want and how do you want them described? The table is based on lots of different sources, primarily the various language-specific books describing the outcomes of Gothic, OE, OHG, etc. There's no single source with such a table in it. There usually aren't even single sources with a particular row or column in them, since the sources mostly describe the sound changes in textual form. In some cases I've used my judgment as to what to stick in; some sound changes in specific languages are too complicated to be reduced to the three basic contexts of "beginning, middle, end", and so I had to choose either to simplify or omit them, since trying to put everything in would make the table intolerably complicated. Do you want every single cell sourced? That's going to be ugly as hell. If not, are column-by-column sources enough? Also, the table uses IPA rather than written notation so as to make things more consistent and easily interpretable for people who aren't familiar with the spelling intricacies of each language -- but at the same time there are disputes in some cases concerning pronunciation. For example, I render the OE spelling of ‹ie› as /iy/ in accordance with Roger Lass, but others dispute this. Another issue is with the various Gothic sounds written ‹au› and ‹ai›. It's probably the case, for example, that in Wulfila's time the spelling of ‹ai› exclusively represented the two sounds /ɛ/ and /ɛː/, but less than a hundred years prior had represented the three sounds /aj/, /ɛ/ and /ɛː/, and since Gothicists tend to separate the three (as ‹ái›, ‹aí› and ‹ai›, respectively), I use the "pre-Gothic" pronunciations. Same for ‹au›. Benwing (talk) 04:05, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

It's up to you to watch the pages you edit if you're interested in what happens to your edits. And after reading this exchange that you had with another editor, I'm afraid I don't see much point in leaving messages on your talk page asking you to add sources…
In this case, you say that your edits are based on lots of different sources. So you can start by citing all of these sources in a statement at the beginning of the section. But that won't be enough here, because as you have described it, the table as a whole constitutes OR. I think that most editors of linguistics articles recognize that some amount of synthesis/OR is unavoidable, and acceptable if there is consensus. You could start a Talk page discussion that explains the choices you've made about what to include and what not to include, being up front about content that is not present in any of the cited sources because it represents your own informed analysis/interpretation. Other editors can then agree/disagree and (hopefully) reach a consensus about whether the information in this table is appropriate.
I know it's more interesting to move on to the next article and expect other editors to do the grunt work to complete your edits. Your advice to another editor was "consider just adding the sources yourself, if you care so much". But no one is going to care about your content more than you do, and no one is in a better position than you are to take the necessary steps to ensure its long-term survival. And, from what I've seen, your edits are absolutely worth the extra effort. CapnPrep (talk) 15:52, 8 May 2012 (UTC)
I don't see how you gather that there's no point in contacting me to add sources based on a single exchange you cherry-picked. In this case that user is a new IP whose only contributions are drive-by deletions of others' contributions, long after the contributions had been stable. In the case that led to the exchange in question, he deleted 75% of an article that had been stable for several months. He made no attempt to contact any of the users whose text he deleted (I only found out through another user who reverted the deletion), and he consistently insulted and belittled them in the edit summaries. What I wrote was an attempt to educate him about a less confrontational way of handling the issue. Perhaps I went overboard, but this was really an extreme case -- just look at the way he responded on my own talk page. You seem to have learned exactly the wrong lesson here. The lesson to learn is that you SHOULD contact others before taking drastic action. Doing the opposite, as you've done, is just going to piss people off. (And BTW, I did add the sources to the text in question.)
As for my table, there is no OR here. If you have concluded otherwise, you've obviously misinterpreted what I was saying, and I'd like to hear your opinions why you think so. However, it would be better if these discussions happened on the talk page in question, so that consensus can obtained, as you mention. But that can't happen if the text isn't there at all -- this is why discussion is normally preferred to reversion. Benwing (talk) 01:36, 9 May 2012 (UTC)
As long as we're learning lessons here, I hope you understand that your pattern of unloading a lot of unsourced material into an article and then walking away pisses people off, too. Other editors SHOULDn't have to contact you every time; you SHOULD already know that citations are a necessary part of every substantial addition of content. And as a practical matter, it's a lot easier and faster to insert them as you go along instead of trying to track them down months later when someone finally reminds you to do it.
By all means, add your table back into the article — this time, along with your list of sources — and we can discuss it there. CapnPrep (talk) 03:39, 9 May 2012 (UTC)
You are absolutely right except that often times the info comes from memory and I'm not always sure which source I learned it from, esp. when I've read a lot of different sources, as is often the case in historical linguistics contexts. That's why I often don't add the sources; but I totally understand your annoyance. In this case I went back and raided my bookshelf to find all the sources I learned the Germanic info from, and they have been added to the table on the column level, which I re-added. If you think there are more specific statements that need sourcing, please let me know (e.g. through the talk page or by adding "citation needed" flags). Benwing (talk) 03:54, 15 May 2012 (UTC)

Do-support[edit]

Thank you for this eminently sensible response. I regret that I wasn't up to that level of clarity myself. Cnilep (talk) 01:43, 20 June 2012 (UTC)