Help with English

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Saint, Aug 24, 2011.

  1. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    You know that's literally the definition of cockamamie if you Google it, right?

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  3. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Sorry, that may have been too vague. Here you go:

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  5. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    origin of word?
     
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  7. geordief Valued Senior Member

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    Last edited: Dec 23, 2019
  8. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 70 years old Valued Senior Member

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    Not scientific enough and
    • not carbon dated
    • found in the correct layer of mud

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  9. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    apparition is ghost?
    is it an uncommon word?
     
  10. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

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    Or a ghost-like image.
    That depends on what you consider "uncommon" to mean.
    It's certainly used, but what it means tends to limit its use.
    I mean, it's not every day one talks of ghosts, or ghost-like appearances.
     
  11. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    The murderer was still at large.

    Why "at large"?
     
  12. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    An old meaning of “large” use to be “free from restraining influence”, e.g. not in prison. So a murderer, who should be ideally be behind bars, would be considered “at large” if they had not yet been caught.
    I think this phrase “at large” is probably the only time you’ll likely see this old meaning still used.
     
  13. geordief Valued Senior Member

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    In the back of my mind I have a meaning of "the large" as the high seas but I can't track it down ,so maybe it doesn't exist.

    There is "the main" and perhaps I am confusing it with that.
     
  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    "By and large" - meaning "in general".

    By and large is originally a sailing term meaning "alternately close-hauled and not close-hauled." A ship that is sailing "close-hauled" is sailing as directly into the wind as possible (typically within about 45 degrees of the wind). The "by" part of the phrase means "close-hauled." (This "by" also appears in the term full and by, meaning "sailing with all sails full and close to the wind as possible.") "Large," by contrast, refers to a point of sail in which the wind is hitting the boat "abaft the beam," or behind the boat's widest point. A 1669 example of a variant spelling of "by and large" gives us a sense of the range implied: "Thus you see the ship handled in fair weather and foul, by and learge" (S. Sturmy, Mariners Magazine). The suggestion of a wide range carries over into the term's "in general" sense.
    - https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/by and large
     
  15. geordief Valued Senior Member

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    This explains my confusion
    https://en.m.wiktionary.org/wiki/au_large

    "large" does mean "the high seas ",but in French.

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  16. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    If it helps, in French largeur means width. Compare: the wide world, wide open spaces, etc.
     
  17. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    Fiance and Fiancee same pronunciation?
     
  18. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    You forgot the accent over the first "e", but yes, they seem to be pronounced the same. At least in English. There may be some difference in French.
     
  19. geordief Valued Senior Member

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    Same in French (not sure btw whether the French are doing away with accents;there has been some talk recently)

    I would be surprised if many English speakers knew about one "e" or two...
     
  20. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    Similarly with née. The word né exists but is not used in English.
     
  21. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    That's because it's so painful.


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  22. geordief Valued Senior Member

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    Nay, brother.
     
  23. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    en bloc = all together
    Why need to use french word while English has its word?
     

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