Search found 2999 matches

by Phil White
Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:27 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Clothes
Replies: 7
Views: 382

Re: Clothes

Pyjamas (UK) Pajamas (US) (Tony: The image — https://cbu01.alicdn.com/img/ibank/2016/780/538/3652835087_720563842.400x400.jpg — was visible yesterday. It's very odd that today it isn't being displayed in the Wordwizard embedded format.) The image will only display if the site it is stored on is ava...
by Phil White
Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:22 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: is nobody
Replies: 2
Views: 185

Re: is nobody

The versions with negative pronouns seem to me to indicate even greater surprise, urgency or desperation than the negated versions, which are already similarly loaded compared with their positive counterparts. Is anybody in the house? (neutral) Isn't anybody in the house? (mild surprise) Is nobody i...
by Phil White
Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:16 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: Motoring
Replies: 4
Views: 244

Re: Motoring

That is truly painful, Bob!
by Phil White
Wed Jul 04, 2018 2:06 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: don't remember most of them
Replies: 2
Views: 229

Re: don't remember most of them

The perceived ambiguity is only there in writing. If you stress "most", it is meaning 1. If you stress "don't", it is meaning 2. In writing, the ambiguity is only resolved by context. Having said that, meaning 2 only really arises in the context of someone having claimed that I would remember most o...
by Phil White
Wed Jul 04, 2018 2:01 pm
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: fribble and fricatrice
Replies: 3
Views: 260

Re: fribble and fricatrice

tony h wrote:
Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:21 am
Oh you credit me with more imagination than I possess.
No, merely more than you imagine...
by Phil White
Fri Jun 29, 2018 1:56 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: not six feet
Replies: 7
Views: 999

Re: not six feet

Hmmm, Here is one discussion: http://www.wordwizard.com/phpbb3/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=8426 The early part of the discussion covers a lot of ground. But, as all of our discussions in those days, it meandered off topic on the last couple of pages... And here is a comment from the original Wordwizard hims...
by Phil White
Fri Jun 29, 2018 1:42 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: not six feet
Replies: 7
Views: 999

Re: not six feet

I am certain we have talked about exactly this subject before, but I can't find the thread. As far as I am concerned, if you use the singular for any unit of measurement, you can use it for all of them. I would not bat an eyelid at "five kilometre down the road" or "three quart of ale". Whether I wo...
by Phil White
Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:33 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: not six feet
Replies: 7
Views: 999

Re: not six feet

With my natural dialect/ideolect, "six foot tall" is always acceptable. My grandfather (Bow-bells cockney) would never have said anything else. As far as the first three are concerned, we don't tend to negate an attributive adjectival phrase with "not", which is why a) sounds wrong. It would sound o...
by Phil White
Wed Jun 06, 2018 3:03 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Grammar in: "go to school" vs "go to the school"
Replies: 11
Views: 2080

Re: Grammar in: "go to school" vs "go to the school"

It's an interesting one, but it is one of the many areas of language where you will seek in vain for hard and fast rules. I think the lack of things like "go to office" and "go to factory", as already mentioned, demonstrate as clearly as anything else the arbitrary nature of the construction. And ye...
by Phil White
Tue May 29, 2018 10:34 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: Turns of a phrase
Replies: 1
Views: 479

Re: Turns of a phrase

Oh, very nice. I shall have to work a few of those in over the next few days.
by Phil White
Wed May 23, 2018 8:17 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: dangling modifier?
Replies: 6
Views: 1429

Re: dangling modifier?

"Modifier" can mean pretty well anything you want it to. In Navi's examples, it is the participle that dangles, and not anything you may find in your pyjamas. As a rule, the things that have the greatest tendency to dangle in English are participles. Prototypical examples include things like "boundi...
by Phil White
Wed May 23, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: dangling modifier?
Replies: 6
Views: 1429

Re: dangling modifier?

Strange. I was thinking about dangling modifiers for about 3 days just last week. The conclusion I came to was that they are a lot more problematic in writing than they are in speech and that native speakers have a fine awareness of when they can be misleading and when not. Generally, if there is on...
by Phil White
Wed May 23, 2018 12:57 am
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: Titanic
Replies: 0
Views: 608

Titanic

The Titanic did not sink.

It just decided to self-identify as a submarine.
by Phil White
Fri May 18, 2018 9:33 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: conservative kidney
Replies: 9
Views: 2986

Re: conservative kidney

You disappoint me, Bob. The Gower is half English! You are a mongrel!
by Phil White
Thu May 17, 2018 10:15 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: conservative kidney
Replies: 9
Views: 2986

Re: conservative kidney

Hi Eliza,

Bob, like slate and coal does not have ancestry. He was hewn from the bowels of the Welsh ground.

But he will undoubtedly tell you that when he comes back from the pit.

Welcome to the Clubhouse!