Questions tagged [english]

A Germanic language, which originated from England, and is considered the leading language in international communication.

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4
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1answer
168 views

Why do French words tend to become so much more intense in English?

My knowledge of French is very rudimentary, but one common theme I noticed in English words borrowed from French is that their meaning becomes so much more intense. To give just a few examples, ...
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1answer
156 views

ɔθɛntɪket translating from IPA to English [closed]

Having trouble translating this word into English if anyone can help it would be greatly appreciated.
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1answer
130 views

Can we parse the hell out of this construction?

John only had the Ferrari for three months, but while he had it, he drove the hell out of it. I'm pretty sure I aced the hell out of that test. That last stuff you got us, we smoked the hell out of it....
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*through* vs. *tough*: ME*-ough* /uːx/ > –? How are the sound shifts from ME -ough explained?

How is it explained that the sound sequence /uːx/ -ough has developed so differently in different words? Not-dipthongized in through, shortened and unrounded and retained fricative in tough, lowered ...
2
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2answers
218 views

Why is the English name for Bruges the same as the French despite that it's a Flemish city?

My question is about the name of Bruges, Belgium. In Flemish, Bruges is called "Brugge", and in French, it's called "Bruges". Despite the city being part of the Flemish-speaking region of Belgium, we ...
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3answers
558 views

Why are English and German West Germanic languages while Scandinavian Germanic languages are an own branch

The Germanic languages are according to Wikipedia subdivided into North Germanic languages and West Germanic languages (historically, there also existed East Germanic languages). The most important (...
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1answer
117 views

Why “were” for subjunctive?

Is the subjunctive (what I learned in school as "Konjunktiv 2") Ger. "wäre" ("Ich wäre gern ..." - I'd like to be ...) cognate to "were" even for singular person ("*als ob ich sicher wäre " - as if I ...
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2answers
141 views

Are the English “Woe” and the German “Wo” related?

Is the English "Woe" and the German "Wo" related? I just heard a colleague say, "Wo ist mein ..." and I thought of the band Woe is me. Are these words just false cognates... or is there some common ...
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1answer
99 views

What is the etymology of the word, “own.” [closed]

Dictionaries offer no etymogy on the word, "own." A search for etymogy of the word comes up wanting. Does anyone know the etymology of "own"?
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3answers
315 views

Morphophonology of changing adjectives to nouns

I’m a freshman who is taking Introduction to Language classes at my college. I’m struggling to answer a question but my mind gets confused. My question is: When the word “secret” becomes another word ...
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1answer
71 views

Classification of -s added to English words

I'm trying top work out what the correct terms are to use in the below scenarios. I've heard of clitics and affixes, but I'm not clear on the difference. cat - cats (noun, plural -s) cat - cat'...
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How should the `y` in `Hornby` be pronounced [closed]

How should the y in [Hornby][1] be pronounced, as the I in I'm, or as the ee in honey-bee? What is the English rule that governs the above?
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162 views

Is there any dialect of English with clusivity?

What it says on the tin. The closest thing that I'm aware of is in Tok Pisin, a creole language which involved English in its creation, which distinguishes “we without you” (mipela) from “we with you” ...
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2answers
186 views

Is “indirect object” syntactically definable or useful, in English or generally?

In traditional English grammar, we're taught that phrases like those boldfaced below are "indirect objects": I gave the book to Ted. I gave Ted the book. But this appears to be based on semantics (...
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1answer
261 views

Is there a General European English Accent?

I have noticed my former trainer from Estonia, fellow students from Poland and Italy, even Khabib from UFC who comes from Dagestan speak with this accent. Here is a video of khabib from remote ...
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1answer
77 views

Does “tetrahedrization” make sense?

I am deciding on a spelling of "tessellation composed of tetrahedra" to use in my thesis. There are four choices I know of Tetrahedralization with 3,530 results on Google Scholar and 25,800 on ...
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1answer
341 views

“We was” and other dialectical variants

According to the British Library site, the use of nonstandard forms of past tense expressions like “we was” are common in some English dialects The verb 'to be' has two simple past forms in ...
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1answer
101 views

Does English have syllabic fricatives (allophonically)?

When speaking rapidly, it doesn't seem that I make a schwa at all when saying a phrase like, say, "the bus." It seems like I'm saying [ð̩.bʌs]. Is this a documented phenomenon?
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2answers
153 views

Language where negation is the default

I was wondering how in English we say "I can" and "I can not" the negative is the longer one, in terms of morphemes, but is there any language where the negative is the default and the positive is ...
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1answer
255 views

Are the English word “charm” and Russian word “чары” etymologically related?

Do "charm" and "чары" share a common etymological root? (NB: "чары" is a Russian plural noun meaning "magic" or "charm." Also note that the English noun "charms" has historically meant magic or ...
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1answer
133 views

The rule of location of stress in English verbs

There are three sets of verbs to point out the location of stress, which are: (Bold implies stress) A => exit B => exist C => improve, surprise C - consonant / V - Vowel According to this data, ...
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1answer
183 views

Which dialect/accent of English has the most/least sounds?

My accent is from New York City, yet I wonder which area has the most or least sounds in their phonemic inventory. While one may have the most vowels and another the most consonants, I would like to ...
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1answer
240 views

What is the full distinction between creoles and other natural languages?

English being a great mess of multiple languages such as French and Old Norse, would it be safe to consider the language that came about a creole? Obviously, most would not consider English a Germanic/...
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0answers
72 views

“Peter sang a song to Julie”, Is “to Julie” is an adjunct or complement?

Peter sang a song to Julie. It seems that the verb "sang" selects the preposition, but to Julie is optional. And if we apply it to an X' Schema, how shall we do it? To Julie is the dependent of sang ...
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2answers
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“there” and “everything” in linguistics is a “pronoun” or “noun”?

Regarding to drawing a syntax tree, "there" and "everything" in linguistics is a "pronoun" or "noun"? For example, 1. There is an apple. 2. It is not everything.
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171 views

Why do swear words mean the same thing in both English and Spanish (possibly more languages)

Earlier today, I was talking about swearing in other languages with some friends (this is a serious question, bear with me), so I decided to look up some lists of Spanish swear words for fun. This ...
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1answer
160 views

proper terms for tipper and dipper S articulation

I just learned for the first time from a WIRED video about movie accents (at 4:30) that American English has multiple possible places of articulation for the "S" sound. I was able to find terms for ...
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1answer
161 views

Is it a causative morpheme or a modal morpheme?

Let us take the verb 'get', we can say both: 1- Someone gets to take something 2- Someone gets someone to take something In the 1st sentence, 'get' is a modal morpheme, but in the other sentence '...
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50 views

Different ways to interpret stressed words in a sentence

I'm reading an introductory book on syntax and one of the exercises says to discuss the interpretations which the italicized expression can have in the given sentences and to give an appropriate ...
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2answers
173 views

If there is really an /ə/ between /dəɹ/ in “quandary”

In considering words with -er ending like "quandary" /ˈkwɑːn.dəɹɪ/, it seems like to me there is no difference between that IPA /ˈkwɑːn.dəɹɪ/ and /ˈkwɑːn.d.ɹɪ/, or "quand-ree". The [r] is like "rrrr" ...
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1answer
108 views

Phonetic mapping between English accents

Does anyone know if there is a resource which lists the mappings between phonemes in different English accents? e.g. a given phoneme in RP maps to this phoneme in Liverpool, that phoneme in Newcastle, ...
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2answers
110 views

Why some verbs have -tion while others don't, when being nounified

Verbs like animate become a noun animation, and others like graduate become graduation. But then there are verbs that are just straight converted into nouns, like capture the verb and a capture the ...
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3answers
340 views

Are There Any Monophthong [o] Words in English?

Whenever I look up a transcription for a word containing [o], it's either an [oɪ] diphthong or an [oʊ] diphthong. Is it not possible to pronounce [o] without gliding through [ʊ] too? Is it possible, ...
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2answers
549 views

Why English is missing some phoneme sequences (/aʊv/ or /aʊp/)

Wondering why English is missing some phoneme sequences. By that I mean, I understand English doesn't have some more typologically unusual phonemes like /χ/, but I'm wondering about sequences of ...
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142 views

Does anyone know if there are plans for a 'successor' to Huddleston and Pullum (CamGEL or CGEL)?

Huddleston and Pullum's The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language (CamGEL or CGEL) is widely considered a 'successor' to a previous 'great English grammar': Quirk, Greenbaum, Leech, and Svartvik's ...
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1answer
119 views

Language in England during 1066

For how many years after 1066 did we speak French in England? I tried looking this up on many sites, but I couldn’t find anything. I'm hoping someone knows their history and can tell me when people ...
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58 views

Transposition of words in questions

In English, the following is grammatically correct: Am I going to the cinema today? In contrast, the assertion that this is true is grammatically correct only with the first two words reversed. ...
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2answers
158 views

Why languages have the concept of “the”

Wondering why you write a sentence like this, with the word the: The person went to the store. La persona fue a la tienda. I don't understand why that extra word needs to be there. It could just ...
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Axioms in English: If we try to find the root meaning of every English word in the dictionary,which word will we land on the most [duplicate]

Assume an alien has landed on Earth and wants to learn English with the help of an English Dictionary. He looks up the meaning of "the". Meaning of "the": "denoting one or more people or things ...
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5answers
639 views

Algorithm for figuring out the pronunciation of a word

Wondering how we pronounce words. I feel like I learned this when I was a kid in school with all the language rules, but now I can't remember. I am trying to think about how we pronounce words. How ...
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1answer
207 views

Why and how do some words come to mean multiple completely unrelated things?

Take an example of the English word 'just'. While it means 'morally fair' in "a just social system", it also means 'a little' in "just less than 8%". For a myriad of colourful meanings of 'just', ...
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3answers
489 views

Does the English “Garden” come from the French “Jardin” or the German “Garten”?

I always assumed that the English word "Garden" was similar to the German "Garten" due to the Germanic roots of English. But according to Wikipedia, "Garden" in English is related to the French "...
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1answer
207 views

Why do I speak more accurately in English rather than my native language?

I have a diction/vocal issue from birth so I can not speak on the "right rhythm" of my tongue. My speech seems always slow and boring at my native language so that I have a huge difficult to verbally ...
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1answer
881 views

Apical postalveolar approximant [ɹ̺] and retroflex approximant [ɻ]: What is the difference?

English [ɹ] has two realizations: apical and bunched (aka molar). ExtIPA (extensions to the IPA) thus recommends the use of [ɹ̺] and [ɹ̈] to differentiate the two. But I also often see English /r/ ...
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1answer
312 views

How to transcribe 'courage' in IPA

I am very new to linguistics, and am trying to transcribe the word 'courage' into IPA. I have come across a few different transcriptions, but I think the correct one might be "kʌrɪdʒ". Is this correct?...
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0answers
57 views

Pattern to Prefixes and Suffixes in English

I've come across a list of English prefixes and remember learning in school about Latin and Greek being helpful for learning words in English based on prefixes/suffixes. I'm wondering though if there ...
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1answer
82 views

Minimal English: Lack Of Clarity And Redundancy

In terms of semantic useful words, Minimal English lists: Foods: corn (yams, etc.) flour meat rice salt sugar sweet wheat Technology And Transport: bicycle boat car engine phone pipe plane radio ...
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1answer
79 views

Why was the Passive Present Progressive judged vulgar compared to the Active Present Continuous? [closed]

John McWhorter PhD Linguistics (Stanford). Doing Our Own Thing (2003). pp. 16 Bottom - p. 17.   One of my favorites is that as late as the 1800s, many stewards of "good English" considered a ...
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1answer
216 views

Genocide vs. genticide [closed]

I was interested in understanding the origin and meaning of the word "genocide" and went to the Online Etymology Dictionary where it says that "The proper formation would be genticide." Why would the ...
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2answers
71 views

“In his desk(,) he kept a black book.” Is “in his desk” a preposed complement here?

The answers and comments beneath my question about the sentence “He kept a black book in his desk” seemed to agree that “in his desk” acts as a complement and not as an adjunct in that sentence. But ...

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