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June 16[edit]


looking for antonyms of "control" (talk) 04:52, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

You've been provided links to thesaurus websites in your prior questions about antonyms. Are these sites not giving you the answers you want? ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 07:39, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

Louis Pierre Vossion[edit]

Recueil. Îles Hawaï. I. Histoire. Documents iconographiques rassemblés par Louis Pierre Vossion, Vue 62.jpg

Can someone help me translate the handwritten texts in this image? Please place in the image description as well. Is Louis Pierre Vossion in the assembled group?--AlohaKavebear (talk) 06:24, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

- Îles Hawaï - Mgr Gulstan Ropert, des Sacrés-Coeurs de Picpus, est depuis 37 ans dans les îles. Il fut l'ami du R.P. Damien, martyr. - L'évêque catholique d'Honolulu - le doyen des Missionnaires (58 ans dans les îles). Le chef de la Division Navale du Pacifique et l'Etat-Major du Croiseur Français Duguay-Trouin, Nov. 1898 - (L. Vossion (?) Consul de France (?). Akseli9 (talk) 06:49, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Wrong ship - must be French cruiser Duguay-Trouin (1873) for which we have no article. Rmhermen (talk) 12:01, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
No, Louis Vossion is not on the picture. Perhaps he's the one who took the picture? Akseli9 (talk) 06:54, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
The name of the file is "Documents iconographiques rassemblés par Louis Pierre Vossion", i.e."pictorial documents assembled by Louis Pierre Vossion". So, the picture may simply have come into his possession in his role as French consul. --Xuxl (talk) 12:35, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

"centralized" antonym[edit]

i often hear "decentralized" computing etc. but isnt there an antonym to "centralized" without using a prefix? (talk) 10:48, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

"Distributed"? Fut.Perf. 10:54, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
"Dis-" is a prefix. Rojomoke (talk) 11:53, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Not in its English usage. Distribute comes from the Latin distribuere, where the dis- is a prefix (meaning "asunder"). But in English you can't knock off the prefix and have a sensible verb - to tribute, anyone? Phil Holmes (talk) 14:54, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
How about "localized"? ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 12:39, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Or regionalized. SemanticMantis (talk) 14:33, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
See: Distributed computing2606:A000:4C0C:E200:8C81:A23:E9F2:E55E (talk) 15:42, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

Pronunciation of "eighth"[edit]

In everyday speech, we simply say it to rhyme with faith. However, a few Wikipedia articles say that this word is property pronounced with a t+th. Any sources saying that this is still the standard pronunciation?? Georgia guy (talk) 18:59, 16 June 2017 (UTC)

I don't have sources to hand, but I can certainly report that I pronounce it /eɪtθ/ even in fast speech. --Trovatore (talk) 19:12, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Ditto on pronunciation. I checked four dictionaries, all giving /eɪtθ/, none giving /eɪθ/. I'm not sure I've ever heard /eɪθ/. -- Elphion (talk) 19:33, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
(added) American Heritage gives both pronunciations. -- Elphion (talk) 19:39, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Wiktionary gives both for the US but not for Britain. Loraof (talk) 20:14, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
The only pronunciation I have commonly heard in England has the t+th sound. If I heard it as ryming with faith, I would assume that someone with a lisp was trying to say "ace" Wymspen (talk) 20:01, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
  • Must be a regional thing. I only pronounce it to rhyme with faith. (I grew up in upstate New York and upstate South Carolina.) Loraof (talk) 20:14, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
The only pronunciation I have ever heard in America has the t+th sound (U.S. south central, southwest, midwest, west). —Stephen (talk) 20:20, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Here in the UK, only /eɪtθ/ is correct (per OED). No-one would rhyme it with faith unless they had a speech impediment or possibly were speaking very quickly. Dbfirs 20:46, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
(Detroit) I also pronounce it the "t+th" way. However, note that it may not be easy to hear the diff, so that if somebody hears it in childhood as just "th", they may start to say it that way, especially before they see how it's spelled. Same with similar words, like "heighth" (although "height" is more formal). StuRat (talk) 21:54, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
There is no such word as "heighth". Height is not simply formal, it's the only version. Unless you're an American, and then anything goes. Akld guy (talk) 22:24, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Actually, some Cockneys say ""heighth" - it's used in A Clockwork Orange (the book): "dressed in the very heighth of fashion" [1]. But you're correct, it's incorrect. Alansplodge (talk) 01:04, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Being from Detroit, that would make me a 'merkin. :-) StuRat (talk) 22:50, 16 June 2017 (UTC)
Do you even comprehend what you were attempting to do? That is, mislead the unwitting reader not proficient in English that "heighth" is merely an alternative to the correct "height". You are either an uncaring idiot or one of those Americans bent on perverting everything in the rest of the world to the American way. I strongly suspect you are not an idiot. So stop with the misleading. There are rules in English. Your localized perversion used by a tiny fraction of the world's population is no substitute for what the rules of English say. Akld guy (talk) 03:14, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
So Americans may make up a small percentage of the world's population — but something close to two thirds of native English speakers. That said, "heighth" is not standard in American English either, so even if we did want to make the world speak AmE, it wouldn't include "heigth". --Trovatore (talk) 07:42, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
I did not include all Americans in "tiny fraction of the world's population". Did you take the time to read what I wrote and ponder it for a moment or two, or just jump to a kneejerk defensive reaction? Akld guy (talk) 00:15, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
It may not be standard in the UK these days, but the OED gives it a British history going back to the 13th century:
c1290 S. Eng. Leg. I. 266/190 Fram þe eorþe heo was op i-houe þe heiȝþe of fet þreo.
Later examples cited:
1667 Milton Paradise Lost viii. 413 To attaine The highth and depth of thy Eternal wayes.
1673 J. Ray Observ. Journey Low-countries 76 Stakes or Poles of about a mans highth.
1809 J. Roland Amateur of Fencing 22 It depends on the person's heighth.
1890 J. D. Robertson Gloss. Words County of Gloucester Hecth, height.
--Antiquary (talk) 09:05, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
And on checking the British Newspaper Archive I find they break down the number of hits for heighth like this:
1700-1749: 58
1750-1799: 685
1800-1849: 1101
1850-1899: 1310
1900-1949: 610
1950-1999: 23
Difficult to draw statistically meaningful results from that without knowing how many newspapers they looked at in each period, but at any rate it looks like heighth was not too uncommon in British English up to the early 20th century. --Antiquary (talk) 09:40, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
And I find over 5 million Ghits for heighth. Far less than height, but still rather significant usage. That, along with the historic usage, would seem to qualify it as a "variant, now chiefly AmE". StuRat (talk) 12:26, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
Am I correct in saying this is the only English word where "th" is pronounced /tθ/? -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 01:48, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Don't know, but no counterexample comes to mind. Actually I can't even think of another example of the /tθ/ cluster, with any spelling. Seems like it ought to be spelled eigtth. --Trovatore (talk) 02:22, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
If you mean with minimal departure from current standard spelling conventions, it should be "eightth"... AnonMoos (talk) 02:54, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Whoops, right. I thought something looked funny but couldn't find it. --Trovatore (talk) 03:23, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Naughth?--Wikimedes (talk) 15:01, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
While the words width and breadth are spelt with -dth, I think the pronunciation is /tθ/. —Stephen (talk) 22:25, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Where I come from, the "d" in those words is enunciated. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:28, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Agreed, who says "with" and "breath" for those words ? StuRat (talk) 12:23, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
Probably the same ones who say "strenth" instead of "strength". ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 14:31, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
Regardless, even if these words were spoken that way (which they're not), this would not be a counter-example for my question. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 20:53, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
True. For that matter, how many English words end in "hth"? ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 21:01, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
The answer appears to be 13, with 9 of them being words ending in "eighth" and the other 4 being non-standard spellings as discussed earlier.[2]Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 21:10, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
Joining the chorus: We do not rhyme it with faith in Western Canada, either. t-th is it. Mingmingla (talk) 02:10, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Midwest: we say eight-th, although we've heard eigh-th in some regions. We also sometimes hear height-th rather than height, but that's considered a hick expression. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 13:40, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
  • I, an AMERICKAN, and say eight-th, but I have heard eith. 14:57, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

By the way, "eighth" is pronounced as if spelled "eightth", while "Matthew" is pronounced as if spelled "Mathew"... SFriendly.gif -- AnonMoos (talk) 09:53, 20 June 2017 (UTC)

Now, that is an interesting observation. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 11:24, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
The origin of Matthew/Mathew may help.[3]Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 15:30, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
"Here in the UK, only /eɪtθ/ is correct (per OED)", says somebody above. I don't think that the OED is designed to be, or should be, used in this way. The OED doesn't purport to be a guide to how all non-trivial British groups of L1 English speakers say words both deliberately and rapidly. I think I say /eɪtθ/ but I wouldn't be at all surprised if an analysis of my actual output revealed that I sometimes said /eɪθ/. As for other words with the /tθ/ cluster, I suspect that my commonest pronunciation of "width" is /wɪtθ/. I'm not even sure that a true [wɪdθ] is possible for monoglot L1 English speakers; but the distinction (if any) between relevant allomorphs of /t/ and /d/ can be problematic. More.coffy (talk) 05:04, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
The OED gives the standard pronunciation. If there was a widespread alternative, it would be stated there. I agree that there are wide regional variations in pronunciation of many words, and that consonants might often be omitted in rapid speech, but the OED is generally considered to be the authority for those who wish to use standard English. I don't use OED pronunciations for my local dialect, but I do for more formal speech. Like you, I struggle to pronounce width as /wɪdθ/ (though I do try). The OED does allow /wɪtθ/ as an alternative for those of us who tend to unvoice the plosive. Dbfirs 08:21, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

June 18[edit]

"pendejera" (Venezuelan slang?)[edit]

  1. 2017 June 16, “Parecemos, pero no somos, y si fuimos, no somos más”, in El Nacional[4]:
    Así se hace cómplice necesario y responsable del intento desesperado para engañar, confiando en que esos millones de ciudadanos hambreados, maltratados, gaseados, apaleados y reprimidos, incluidos los pocos maduristas que reverencian sin cavilar, síntoma clarísimo de pendejera vocacional, van a tragarse semejante fábula retorcida sin aviso ni protesto.

What does this mean? "Pendejera" is the name of the plant Solanum torvum according to es.wikipedia but that doesn't seem to be the meaning here. DTLHS (talk) 02:07, 18 June 2017 (UTC)

This source translates "pendejera" as: cowardice, unmanliness ... lack of character, namby-pambiness2606:A000:4C0C:E200:8C81:A23:E9F2:E55E (talk) 03:20, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
I wonder whether that source applies to Venezuelan colloquial Spanish though. Obviously, pendejera is derived from "pendejo". That Wiktionary entry lists various meanings, and "coward" is attributed to various countries, but not to Venezuela which is specifically listed for only one meaning there: "dickhead (stupid person)". Similarly, Spanish Wiktionary only mentions Venezuela for the meaning "falto de inteligencia, entendimiento o astucia".[5] In this Chilean article the Venezuelan linguist Maylen Sosa explains the Venezuelan connotations of "pendejo", "a mild insult to disqualify someone". Perhaps I'd translate "pendejera vocacional" as "vocational stupidity" or "vocational dickheadery", but not "vocational cowardice" ---Sluzzelin talk 09:34, 18 June 2017 (UTC)

Pendejo (m) and "pendeja" (f) are the more common slang terms (the word for slang in Spanish is "jerga" by the way), and is a catch-all term meaning dumbass, idiot, moron, spineless, etc. I'm not Venezuelan but the addition of the ending '-era' would literally translate to 'one who does' (and if it was a male, it'd end in '-ero'. I'd take it to mean "one who commits stupid acts." The Spanish language is very fluid in Latin America so it's very common to have some slang be very regionalized and other slang very wide spread. UltravioletAlien (talk) 05:55, 24 June 2017 (UTC)

German translation of a Kennedy quote[edit]

Could somebody give me a good German translation of the following phrase from this speech by Kennedy: "yet both racing to alter that uncertain balance of terror that stays the hand mankind's final war" — What would be the most literal equivalent to hand here?--Erdic (talk) 19:23, 18 June 2017 (UTC)

First thought: I do not think it will be done with just translating "hand" here....the whole sentence would be something like "stay your hand, knave" e.g....with the meaning of "am Handeln gehindert sein, werden". Lectonar (talk) 19:32, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
One translation found in several books [6] has "das den Ausbruch des letzten Krieges der Menschheit noch hemmt" (for "that stays the hand of mankind's final war"). This seems a fairly decent translation. What makes the phrase difficult to understand (to German non-native speakers of English) is maybe not so much the meaning of "hand", but the transitive use of stay in the sense of "keep sth. back". Fut.Perf. 20:18, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
I found it difficult to understand too, but the JFK Library confirms that you've lost an "of" in that quote; "stays the hand of mankind's final war" makes more sense. Alansplodge (talk) 20:30, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you all very much — now I do see the sense! Best--Erdic (talk) 19:11, 20 June 2017 (UTC)

June 19[edit]

Job descriptions[edit]

In the last century, the Surveyor of the Fabric of Westminster Abbey was Doctor Donald Buttress, while the Archbishop of Manila was Cardinal Sin. Do people's surnames influence their choice of occupation? (talk) 09:53, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

See Nominative determinism. Rojomoke (talk) 23:31, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

Translation from Arabic - 'sabih'[edit]

What does it 'sabih' (or something like that) mean? I don't know how it's written in Arabic. I know it can be a given name, but it should also have meaning as a word. -- (talk) 11:20, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

Probably Sabeeh. HOTmag (talk) 14:39, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
This wikt:صبيح.--Lüboslóv Yęzýkin (talk) 17:23, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

Danish or Norwegian?[edit]

I have a citation as follows:

Indberetning om en stipendierejse til England for at studere Gouins metode for undervisning i sprog (Quousque Tandem No. = Norske univ. og skoleannaler, 1894

Google guesses the the first part to be Danish, and the second ("Norske univ. og skoleannaler,") to be Norwegian. Assuming the question makes sense for an 1894 text, which language are these really? Thanks, HenryFlower 12:58, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

I'm Danish. "Quousque Tandem" is Latin. "No." is not a Danish abbreviation but may in some contexts be used instead of "nr." (number, Danish: nummer). Everything else including "Norske univ. og skoleannaler" is valid current Danish (univ. must be short for universitets). I don't think it's valid current Norwegian but I don't know about 1894. Norway was Danish for centuries until 1814 and the languages are very similar. See Languages of Norway#Norwegian language struggle. "Norske" means Norwegian which may be why Google guesses Norwegian. PrimeHunter (talk) 14:16, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
No. may not be a Danish abbreviation, but it is a perfectly good Latin one for numero, which makes sense as part of the Latin phrase. Wymspen (talk) 14:30, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
Also see Numero sign. Lectonar (talk) 14:33, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
Thanks all (especially PrimeHunter) -- that's very helpful. :) HenryFlower 15:45, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
  • @Henry Flower: It's actually both Danish and Norwegian, since written Norwegian Bokmål is very close to written Danish (the two languages differ mainly in pronounciation), and was even closer to Danish during the later part of the 19th Century (see Riksmål). In modern Norwegian Bokmål the word "stipendierejse" would be spelt "stipendiereise", but in 1894, when the text appears to have been written, the former, i.e. pure Danish, spelling would probably have been used. Which means that I, because of the "Norske univ. og skoleannaler", would classify the text as being in Norwegian. - Tom | Thomas.W talk 18:57, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
A bit off-topic, but see A language is a dialect with an army and navy. Danish, Norwegian and Swedish are classified as separate languages, and not a common Scandinavian language as it once was (see Old Norse), for political reasons, but actually differ less from each other than a number of dialects of the German language differ from each other, with Norwegian often being described as an intermediate stage between Danish and Swedish, by using Danish words (and orthography) but pronouncing the words the way a Swedish-speaker would... - Tom | Thomas.W talk 19:21, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

what's the rule?[edit]

Do you say

Do the same things that the parents do.


Do the same things as the parents do? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:42, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

Both those expressions are valid but both are rather clumsy. It is not necessary to repeat "do". It would be better to say "Do the same as the parents". Also "the parents" sounds rather odd as it is not clear whose parents are being referred to. It would be more usual to hear "Do the same as your (his, her) parents".--Mrs Wibble-Wobble (talk) 18:25, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
This is a matter of opinion; I prefer the original versions. I don't have a source for this, but I have the impression that British people are more likely to prefer the shorter versions. -- (talk) 22:02, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
I don't agree with your last comment. Check: The grandparents "do the same as the parents". HOTmag (talk) 21:46, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
I think you are trying to combine two phrases, each of which is quite clear, and thereby causing some grammatical confusion. Either say "Do the things that your parents do" or "do the same as your parents do" - you don't actually need to say "the same things" Wymspen (talk) 07:50, 20 June 2017 (UTC)

How to pronounce the word "Jesuism"[edit]

I was just reading the Wikipedia article called "Jesuism" but can't seem to find out in any of my searches how that word is pronounced. Just wondering if that info could be included, please. Or, would you happen to know of any other site where the pronunciation is given?

Many thanks! ~ Coleyna — Preceding unsigned comment added by Coleyna (talkcontribs) 22:14, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

A non-IPA representation might be written as "JEZ-you-izm". Wictionary's entry lacks a pronunciation, and the word isn't in my (paper) copy of the OED. Anyone? {The poster formerly known as} (talk) 00:32, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
If "Jesuism" refers to the "Jesuits", the corresponding pronunciation should be "JEZ-oo-ism". ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 15:27, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
... but it doesn't. That would be Jesuitism, pronounced /ˈdʒɛzjuːɪˌtɪz(ə)m/ according to the OED. Dbfirs 15:42, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
So "Jeez-u-ism" after the pronunciation of Jesus? That doesn't sound right to me. DTLHS (talk) 16:50, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
Note that this is a word that could be eligible for Trisyllabic laxing, so it would not be surprising if the first syllable were /dʒɛz/. However, there are exceptions to that rule, so it could also be /dʒi:z/, or both pronunciations may exist in free variation.
In the UK, "JEZ-you-izm" is normal, but given the American tendancy for yod dropping, "JEZ-oo-ism" might be acceptable over there. Alansplodge (talk) 11:05, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
But very unlikely to be "JEEZ-you-ism". ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 15:13, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Indeed, I've never heard of that one. Alansplodge (talk) 20:55, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

June 20[edit]

"Spare oneself sth"[edit]

Hello, would you say "You could have spared [or saved?] yourself that!" or rather "You could have spared that yourself!"? Best--Erdic (talk) 19:14, 20 June 2017 (UTC)

In the sense that you need not have put yourself through some difficulty, you would say "You could have spared yourself that." The other phrase is perfectly correct grammar - but means something quite different: you have something that you don't need and could have done without it when it was needed, but chose to hang on to it rather than letting it be used. Wymspen (talk) 19:31, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you, Wymspen! But wouldn't you then rather leave out "yourself" for the second meaning?--Erdic (talk) 19:43, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
Yes; in that context yourself more likely means ‘you rather than (or as well as) someone else’, rather than a reflexive sense. —Tamfang (talk) 20:26, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
You could leave out the "yourself" in the second example - but it perhaps serves to emphasise the selfishness. It seems to imply not just that you could have provided what was required, but that you required someone else to provide it even though you could have done it yourself. I accept that the distinctions are rather subtle - as a well educated Englishman I accept that I may read things into a text that not everyone would spot, or even intend in writing it. Wymspen (talk) 21:36, 20 June 2017 (UTC)
Many thanks for your clarification! Kind regards--Erdic (talk) 08:56, 21 June 2017 (UTC)
Erdic, when a ditransitive verb is followed by two arguments without a preposition, the first is the indirect argument (recipient, or beneficiary) and the second the object; so "spare that yourself" cannot have the required meaning, as Wymspen says, Usually there is an alternative form with a preposition and the arguments reversed ("give me the book" = "give the book to me"), but ditransitive "spare" doesn't have this alternative: there is no *"spare that to/from/for yourself" --ColinFine (talk) 11:06, 21 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you very much, too!--Erdic (talk) 14:48, 21 June 2017 (UTC)

June 21[edit]

Translation from German needed[edit]

Hello everybody! Since I am admittedly a bit stuck here with my recent investigation, I would like to give it a try and ask you for a nice translation of the sentence "lass dich von seinem Gerede auf keinen Fall zu irgendeinem Unsinn hinreißen!". I marked the parts that matter to me most. Hoping for your kind support,--Erdic (talk) 09:23, 21 June 2017 (UTC)

PS: Please feel free to also correct my enquiry as such if you find any mistakes. Thanks a lot in advance!--Erdic (talk) 09:25, 21 June 2017 (UTC)

Not a native speaker, so someone may correct me, but a translation would be something like "Don't under any circumstances let his gossip draw you into doing something stupid". --Xuxl (talk) 12:56, 21 June 2017 (UTC)
Native speaker: The above suggestion is perfectly valid. My version would be: 'Don´t let yourself (or: don´t allow yourself to) be tricked into some nonsense by his verbiage. Depending on the context there may be better alternatives. Clearly, this is direct speech in a fairly colloquial mode where vocabulary & semantics are both subjective and fuzzy. --Cookatoo.ergo.ZooM (talk) 14:38, 21 June 2017 (UTC)
@Xuxl and Cookatoo.ergo.ZooM: Many thanks for your answers! In the meantime, I found these suggestions. Would you say all of them are idiomatic, too?--Erdic (talk) 01:26, 24 June 2017 (UTC)

German–American-English online dictionary?[edit]

Hello, I have a somewhat fundamental question: Is there any German–American-English [online] dictionary on the market? What do professional American translators use? I'm asking here because up to now, I couldn't manage to find anything of that kind yet. Best--Erdic (talk) 22:56, 21 June 2017 (UTC)

American translators use specialist dictionaries almost exclusively. Which ones depends on your specialty; medical, aerospace, chemical, legal, financial, business, petroleum exploitation, mechanical engineering, and so on. I have always used print dictionaries, and occasionally research some difficult words online. I don't know of any good online technical dictionaries. The only ones I find online are small technical vocabularies. —Stephen (talk) 07:02, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
You could try an online forum, for example this one: [7]. (talk) 08:30, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Try the Collins German Dictionary online. It has both US and UK English definitions indicated. (e.g. "tap" EN>DE). I use the Collins German Concise Dictionary dico, 3rd Edition (treeware), for independent study as it provides much idiomatic context. There are a number of online DE dicos. Our Austrian interns like which is crowdsourced. I prefer leo online, especially for its usage forum. As for the AE vs BE aspect - if you aren't entirely fluent in one or the other version of English, just check the suggested translation in your preferred English-language dictionary. I (= professional Hebrew>English translator) use Merriam-Webster's online for my native US English. For British I used to use a CD version of MS Encarta's dico that came bundled with the treeware World English Dictionary, otherwise I don't know what online options are available. Hope this helps. -- 15:32, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
@Stephen G. Brown: Very interesting, thanks a lot for this insight! I really wouldn't have thought that, but that may indeed explain the lack I revealed here. Best--Erdic (talk) 01:03, 24 June 2017 (UTC)
@Deborahjay: Thank you very much for your kind response! Of course, I already knew all of the dictionaries you mentioned since I've been in search of the issue in question for quite some time now. What I for my part can highly recommend besides Collins, which I also use frequently, is PONS online, since they have a very professional editorial staff with native speakers and they do quite a good job with a very comprehensive and differentiated dictionary that considers also very specific varieties (f. i. Australian or South African English) apart from BE and AE. However, it is still a German and not an American product... And then there's also Langenscheidt, the most and longest-established German dictionary for English, also with professional editors, but their translations are occasionally somewhat stiff or unidiomatic if you ask me. Yet this is also a very extensive dictionary – in many cases even more detailed than PONS. and are of course not professional projects, which mainly consist of mostly undifferentiated word lists, and thus, I admittedly have quite some reservations about them. But thank you anyway for your friendly advice! Best wishes--Erdic (talk) 01:03, 24 June 2017 (UTC)

June 22[edit]

V NP = V P NP[edit]

Either (A) "The strike lasted two weeks" means the same as "The strike lasted for two weeks" or (B) the difference in meaning is so subtle that I'm not consciously aware of it.

For can't always be used with LAST: "Those shoes should last for till you're 50", for example, is ungrammatical. But most of the time, for seems optional.

It's hard to come up with verb-plus-preposition combinations* where the preposition is similarly unnecessary. FORGET about is one. (When I skimread examples of "forget about" at COCA and mentally remove the "about", the resulting sentences are good and mean the same; similarly, when I skimread COCA's examples of "forget the" and mentally insert "about", the resulting sentences are good and mean the same.)

I can't think of any reason why anyone would compile a list of verb plus preposition sequences in which the preposition is, usually, entirely optional. So there probably is no such list. But does anyone here know of one, or can anyone think of a way in which I could generate such a list without laborious introspection?

* Such a description of course doesn't reflect the structure (PP versus simple NP), but I'm trying to avoid technicalities that aren't needed here. More.coffy (talk) 05:39, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

I think it's fairly common with certain time expressions: "I did it Tuesday" vs. "I did it on Tuesday".
"Forget" (transitive) and "forget about" do not always mean exactly the same thing. "I forgot the coffee" has a fairly strong implication that you forgot to bring the coffee with you, while "I forgot about the coffee" doesn't. AnonMoos (talk) 09:44, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
One thing which puzzles me is that when Americans say "through Thursday" they mean "up to" and possibly "including Thursday" while the British use this expression to mean "during the course of Thursday". They would say "through to Thursday" to express the first idea. So why do Americans omit the preposition, and how would they translate the British expression "through Thursday" into American English? (talk) 10:11, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
I don't recognise this as a British expression. Do you have an example? HenryFlower 15:07, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for the ideas, AnonMoos. But I think my idiolect differs a little from yours. Arriving back from shopping: "Here you are: bacon, coriander, avocados, beer, pineapple juice, soy milk." / "Ah good. But the coffee?" / "Damn, I forgot (about) the coffee." Either would sound perfectly idiomatic to me. However, I do detect differences elsewhere. Wondering whether to make a return visit to a particular restaurant: "The meal was superb, remember? The antipasti, the risotto.... Even the house wine was excellent." / "Well, yes, but what they called 'espresso' was pretty awful." / "Ah yes, I'd forgotten (about) the coffee." Here, omission of "about" might sound slightly strange to me. More.coffy (talk) 11:49, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
I've heard 'should last for till' but it does sound clunky and unnecessary. Dmcq (talk) 12:18, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Neither "last for till" nor "lasted for till" appears in COCA. Merely a performance error, perhaps? More.coffy (talk) 22:29, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Or just speech compared to writing, for instance how often do people use 'till' in writing compared to 'until'? Dmcq (talk) 09:03, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
Reference: see this book, found on google scholar, for a detailed discussion. Don't know if a single-sourced article is permissible, but this might be a good starting point for an article on optional prepositions. Some of the factors in play are cognitive complexity, tense, rhythm, and the involvement of time expressions or causality. (talk) 15:00, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Would it be reasonable to say that "forget about" something means "to forget the existence or relevance of something", whereas "forget" something means either to forget to bring something, or to forget the details of something. Compare for example "I forgot my password" vs. "I forgot about my password". Iapetus (talk) 15:13, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your pointer to Google Books, Mr/Ms Not-logged-in. Unfortunately Google Books won't serve this up to me, but maybe I can find a PDF somewhere. More.coffy (talk) 22:29, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
I suspect that your suggested difference is too simple, Iapetus. However, I can't immediately come up with anything better, and your example is very good: certainly the version with "about" would sound very odd to me. More.coffy (talk) 22:29, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Couple more examples in Zero-marking_in_English#Zero_prepositions. (talk) 15:06, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
The "about" version could make sense if for example I told someone to use my computer for some purpose, but had forgotten that they would have needed a password to do so. Iapetus (talk) 11:23, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you ... but Wikipedia's treatment of "zero prepositions" is horrible! It starts
In Northern Britain some speakers omit the prepositions to or of in sentences with two objects.
"So, she won't give us it." (She won't give it to us.)
There are so many confusions (or misunderstandings) within this. More.coffy (talk) 22:29, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
That doesn't have much to do with "omitting prepositions". "Give me the coffee" and "Give the coffee to me" are variants in English, and these dialects extend the first construction to cases when the direct object is pronominal... AnonMoos (talk) 08:37, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
I can think of the example of opening times. A Briton would say "9 to 5, Monday to Friday". An American would say "9 through 5, Monday to Friday. In some cases (as discussed above) prepositions are added unnecessarily. The station announcer yesterday morning said "The London, King's Cross train is now arriving into platform 2". The normal phrase is "arriving at", with "arriving on" also heard. This may be the same announcer who recently informed passengers "Your next King's Cross train will arrive at and depart from platform 2". Superfluous speech was the subject of a recent question:

Gilding the lily[edit]

What is the origin of this phrase? On 3 January 2015 an unnamed Daily Telegraph journalist wrote:

Unfortunately this year the almost-full waxing gibbous moon will obscure the display.

Are there any other examples of a writer repeating three times something which was perfectly obvious the first time (the word "gibbous" is superfluous here). (talk) 10:05, 31 March 2017 (UTC)

Turning stops into fricatives[edit]

When we correspond stops with fricatives, we usually go with p=f, t=th, and k=German ch. We even sometimes go with s=sh even though they are both fricatives. Naturally, however, the corresponding sounds are p=wh, t=s, and k=h in huge (a voiceless y.) If you don't believe me, try making a stop sound and try to hold it for as long as you can and then if it turns into something different, find what it turns into. Is there any reason the first 2 sentences in this paragraph are true despite the naturalness of the third sentence?? Georgia guy (talk) 22:18, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

I don't understand. Are you talking about finding which stops are made at the same places of articulation as various fricatives? What are "corresponding sounds"? In which of its various and nebulous senses are you using the word "naturally"? More.coffy (talk) 22:34, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
The first 2 sentences talk about how fricatives developed from other stops (and one fricative that's not the same as the fricative that developed from it) in the languages that formed fricatives. To understand the third sentence, try making a p, t, or k sound and hold it for a few seconds and guess what different sound it turns into. A p will turn to the wh sound in white. A t will turn into an s. A k will turn into the sound of the h in huge, which is a voiceless y. Try it if you don't believe me. Georgia guy (talk) 22:37, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

Georgia_guy -- First off, a change from a stop to a fricative at or near the corresponding place of articulation is usually called "spirantization". Second, it would be nice if you would use some system of phonetic transcription. IPA or Americanist phonetic notation or whatever, I don't care, but ordinary unmodified English orthography simply doesn't work for this particular discussion. Third, the fricative with the same place of articulation as [p] is [ɸ], not [ʍ]. The [ʍ] sound is an approximant, not a fricative. Fourth, a change from [s] to [ʃ] is usually called a "palatalization", most definitely not a "spirantization". Your "22:37" comments are quite strange, but if they have any point, it's that slightly different points of articulation are often preferred for stops and fricatives. So, for example, bilabial [p] is preferred among the stops, while among the fricatives labiodental [f] is more often found than bilabial [ɸ]. A change of spirantization affecting a [p] sound will often end up with [f] as the result for this reason... AnonMoos (talk) 08:28, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

June 23[edit]

"sports fielded"?[edit]

Considering e. g. the article Big Ten Conference, what exactly does the term "sports fielded" in the infobox refer to? I have to admit that I'm German and that I couldn't really find an appropriate translation. Best--Curc (talk) 11:21, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

How many different sports you can play there, by the looks of it. So both men and women can play 28 different sports. --TammyMoet (talk) 13:14, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
If you look in the section "Sports" you'll see the list. Note that not all sports are played by both men and women. Some are just men, some are just women. But it adds up to 28; 14 by men, 14 by women. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 14:47, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
One meaning of the verb "to field" is to put a team together to take part in a sport - so you can say that a football team fields several youth teams as well as their main team. In this context it indicates how many different sports are played, for each of which at least one team can be fielded. Wymspen (talk) 20:22, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
Thank you very much! So, the expression appears a bit tricky in this context, doesn't it?--Curc (talk) 23:53, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
Indeed. I have to say that this usage of "field" is unfamiliar to me: I'd say an organization may "field" one or more teams, but not one or more sports. Later in the article it uses the word "sponsored" instead. I think the infobox should be changed to say something like "Number of sports". In addition, the usage of "sport" is problematic, or else the numbers given are wrong. Men's basketball and women's basketball would be one sport, not two. Likewise men's lacrosse and women's lacrosse, and so on. Based on the tables in the article, it appears to me that it should say 18 sports (4 men-only, 4 women-only, 10 both sexes). If 14 men's + 14 women's = 28 is wanted, then "sports" is the wrong word for the label. -- (talk) 00:04, 24 June 2017 (UTC)
A better word than fielded in this case would be 'sponsored' perhaps. But there's no inherent problem with treating the men's and women's sports as distinct, since they do not compete together.--Jayron32 02:57, 24 June 2017 (UTC)
Of course they are distinct competitions; what they are not is distinct sports, as the label claims. -- (talk) 05:57, 24 June 2017 (UTC)
Feel free to write to the Big Ten itself and complain about their own terminology.[8]Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 11:25, 24 June 2017 (UTC)

June 24[edit]