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Make Your Own Motivational Poster


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Amazing how much difference a single word can make....  

Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

"English doesn't borrow from other languages. English follows other languages down dark alleys' date=' knocks them over, and rummages through their pockets for loose grammar."[/quote']

 

Indeed. Although we don't take that much grammar, we are notorious for word borrowing. Something like only 5% of the words that currently exist in English can draw a lineage back to Old English. The other ~95% draw their origin from other languages. Then again, that 5% is the most frequently used set of words, too.

 

La Rose.

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

And we're still accreting stuff on it' date=' like "pwned".[/quote']

 

And n00b. ;)

 

 

Although I don't know the etymology of "new" or "own", I'd imagine that they do date back to Old English since they are such basic words / concepts. If that is so, then we ca still consider even those words to be part of the 5%. ^^

 

La Rose.

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

Indeed. Although we don't take that much grammar, we are notorious for word borrowing. Something like only 5% of the words that currently exist in English can draw a lineage back to Old English. The other ~95% draw their origin from other languages. Then again, that 5% is the most frequently used set of words, too.

 

La Rose.

 

I heard it this way: "The English language came about as the result of Norman soldiers trying to pick up Saxon barmaids, and the resulting language was no more legitimate than the resulting children."

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

I heard it this way: "The English language came about as the result of Norman soldiers trying to pick up Saxon barmaids' date=' and the resulting language was no more legitimate than the resulting children."[/quote']

 

If one ever wants to give themselves a headache, I'd advise reading the OED's entry for the word "be". I've studied Linguistics - and I really do enjoy syntax and morphology but even my brain starts to hurt after reading the first couple pages worth (its about 30k words / 79pages in word doc format if one counts the quoted usage section).

 

La Rose.

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

"English doesn't borrow from other languages. English follows other languages down dark alleys' date=' knocks them over, and rummages through their pockets for loose grammar."[/quote']

 

English, the language invented by French speaking Normans trying to get dates with German speaking Saxon barmaids. - H. Beam Piper in Little Fuzzy

(on edit: crap, Pariah beat me to it.)

 

"We are the Anglo Saxon collective. Your linguisting individuality is at an end. Your words will be assimilated into our own language. Prepare to be boarded."

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

I've heard this thing about borrowing a great deal going back to a history of the English language published in the 1980s that concluded that this propensity was what made English the awesomerest language ever.

 

Which, I'm sorry. Other awesomerest things ever: my hometown; my home province; my favourite sport; my favourite fast food chain. Seeing a pattern here? It's the "my." And it doth occur to me that when native English speakers write books about the history of the English language, they're writing about their language.

 

So, not to be one of those instinctive anti-homers or anything, I'm requesting a recount of borrowings, in case it turns out that Dutch or Tagalog or Yoruba in fact turn out to be even awesomerestest than English.

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

Indeed. Although we don't take that much grammar, we are notorious for word borrowing. Something like only 5% of the words that currently exist in English can draw a lineage back to Old English. The other ~95% draw their origin from other languages. Then again, that 5% is the most frequently used set of words, too.

 

La Rose.

 

Actually we borrowed a fair amount of grammar. "Educated" individuals writing grammar primers for the new and growing middle class included a lot of Latin grammar which is why we have stupidity like so called "double negatives" being "incorrect" and "illogical" even though two of the three types of double negative are actually used regularly and considered correct...

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

Actually we borrowed a fair amount of grammar. "Educated" individuals writing grammar primers for the new and growing middle class included a lot of Latin grammar which is why we have stupidity like so called "double negatives" being "incorrect" and "illogical" even though two of the three types of double negative are actually used regularly and considered correct...

That don't make no sense.

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

Actually we borrowed a fair amount of grammar. "Educated" individuals writing grammar primers for the new and growing middle class included a lot of Latin grammar which is why we have stupidity like so called "double negatives" being "incorrect" and "illogical" even though two of the three types of double negative are actually used regularly and considered correct...

 

Yes and no. We have a lot of people with a giant stick up their backside who write "grammar guides" that purport to elucidate the "proper" rules of language who have no clue what they are talking about and come off as completely self absorbed and ethno/ego-centric arses. Things like "cannot end with a preposition" or "double negatives" aren't descriptive rules (rules that show how language is actually used) but prescriptive ones governing how someone things it should be used. Indeed, in latin, it was Impossible to end a well formed sentence with a preposition or break an infinitive AND people who thought latin was the best language saw that natural speakers of English didn't follow these descriptive rules of latin and thus said they were using ENGLISH wrong. That is the most stupid thing ever. If language is actually being used wrong - you don't have to tell the speaker - they already know.

 

That said, grammar features, just like any other features of a language, change over time for all extant languages. We went from a highly synthetic language (one that uses a lot of glob on pieces to create ever more complex single words) to a very isolated language (one where ever more words are used to convey complex meanings). This has some influence from other languages but is largely self contained in English (it is hard to point to a grammar form and go "That's French")

 

Also, this is one that annoys me: the comparison of "double negatives" to "multiplication." This appeal to similarity is how we get the "two negatives make a positive" rule. And the force of mathematics is so strong that people don't question it. But they forget to question the appeal to Multiplication in the first place. In most languages that use double negatives (including many forms of English), the comparison is more like addition. Two negative numbers added together make and even more commanding negative number. I can't get no satisfaction really means "I really and truly am not getting satisfaction".

 

La Rose.

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Re: Make Your Own Motivational Poster

 

My pet peeve with grammar is the "snob's error" - using "I" in a sentence when "me" is actually correct.

 

"That film was very amusing to Steve and I" and so on. So easy to correct (take out the other person and see if it still sounds right) but so many people do it because they think it sounds more refined.

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