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BS: Etymology, Semantics

Peace 05 Mar 06 - 08:13 PM
Rapparee 05 Mar 06 - 08:21 PM
Gurney 05 Mar 06 - 08:24 PM
Azizi 05 Mar 06 - 09:09 PM
Azizi 05 Mar 06 - 10:23 PM
Azizi 05 Mar 06 - 10:26 PM
Windsinger 06 Mar 06 - 02:38 AM
Liz the Squeak 06 Mar 06 - 03:45 AM
Jeanie 06 Mar 06 - 04:25 AM
Windsinger 06 Mar 06 - 07:06 AM
Purple Foxx 06 Mar 06 - 07:40 AM
Windsinger 06 Mar 06 - 08:15 AM
freda underhill 06 Mar 06 - 08:18 AM
Azizi 06 Mar 06 - 10:01 AM
Purple Foxx 06 Mar 06 - 10:15 AM
Peace 06 Mar 06 - 11:02 AM
Splott Man 06 Mar 06 - 11:31 AM
Bert 06 Mar 06 - 12:36 PM
GUEST 06 Mar 06 - 12:46 PM
Bill D 06 Mar 06 - 01:07 PM
Richard Bridge 06 Mar 06 - 01:39 PM
Bill D 06 Mar 06 - 01:57 PM
Purple Foxx 06 Mar 06 - 02:58 PM
Peace 06 Mar 06 - 03:04 PM
Bill D 06 Mar 06 - 03:04 PM
Richard Bridge 06 Mar 06 - 03:07 PM
Bill D 06 Mar 06 - 03:18 PM
Purple Foxx 06 Mar 06 - 03:19 PM
Peace 06 Mar 06 - 03:33 PM
Mrrzy 06 Mar 06 - 03:44 PM
Purple Foxx 06 Mar 06 - 04:27 PM
Windsinger 06 Mar 06 - 05:06 PM
Azizi 06 Mar 06 - 05:58 PM
Azizi 06 Mar 06 - 06:02 PM
Amos 06 Mar 06 - 06:03 PM
Richard Bridge 06 Mar 06 - 06:15 PM
Azizi 06 Mar 06 - 06:24 PM
Amos 06 Mar 06 - 07:30 PM
Peace 06 Mar 06 - 07:31 PM
Purple Foxx 07 Mar 06 - 03:19 AM
Windsinger 07 Mar 06 - 12:34 PM
Cluin 07 Mar 06 - 08:44 PM
Peace 07 Mar 06 - 08:54 PM
Peace 07 Mar 06 - 08:58 PM
Cluin 07 Mar 06 - 10:03 PM
GUEST 07 Mar 06 - 10:11 PM
GUEST 07 Mar 06 - 10:16 PM
Dave the Gnome 08 Mar 06 - 07:03 AM
Windsinger 08 Mar 06 - 07:36 AM
McGrath of Harlow 08 Mar 06 - 03:40 PM
Cluin 08 Mar 06 - 03:46 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 06 - 05:03 PM
McGrath of Harlow 08 Mar 06 - 05:15 PM
GUEST 08 Mar 06 - 05:18 PM
Cluin 08 Mar 06 - 05:24 PM
GUEST 08 Mar 06 - 05:29 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 06 - 06:54 PM
bobad 08 Mar 06 - 07:01 PM
GUEST, Topsie 09 Mar 06 - 05:56 AM
Windsinger 09 Mar 06 - 07:58 AM
Peace 09 Mar 06 - 10:14 AM
Windsinger 09 Mar 06 - 10:43 AM
Peace 09 Mar 06 - 11:29 AM
McGrath of Harlow 09 Mar 06 - 11:55 AM
Peace 09 Mar 06 - 12:16 PM
Windsinger 09 Mar 06 - 12:56 PM
Arne 09 Mar 06 - 02:02 PM
McGrath of Harlow 09 Mar 06 - 02:18 PM
Windsinger 09 Mar 06 - 02:28 PM
McGrath of Harlow 09 Mar 06 - 03:14 PM
Cluin 10 Mar 06 - 04:41 AM
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Purple Foxx 10 Mar 06 - 12:02 PM

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Subject: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 08:13 PM

I am reading a book entitled "Sussex as She Was Spoke". In a rhmye, the author has quoted a verb formation like this: "He do know wot ee's about" (or something similar).

The verb conjugations from "to be" seems to have interesting variations in the third person singular. It brought to memory a scene from "The Alamo" (with John Wayne--I know) in which one of the characters (Widmark playing Jim Bowie) is dying. He's asked if it hurts. He replys, "It do."

I have heard similar in Newfoundland (although not just in the third person): How bes you? I bes fine!

Do any of you notice that type of things where you live?


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Rapparee
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 08:21 PM

Yes. I'll give examples when they come to mind.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Gurney
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 08:24 PM

The classic antipodean phrase is 'She'll be right, mate!"

= (Whatever) will turn out acceptably, pal.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 09:09 PM

I consider myself to be bilingual in that I usually speak and write in standard [American]English, but can use Ebonics {African American Vernacular English} when I want to.

When people talk about how African languages have influenced American English, they usually focus on the presence of African vocabulary words in English such as "jazz", "dig", and "goober" {as in goober peas}.

But the grammar of traditional West African & Central African languages such as Wolof {Senegal & The Gambia}; Akan {Ghana &
The Ivory Coast}, Yoruba {Nigeria} and Lingala {The Congos} are said to have much more influence upon English than the vocabulary of those traditional African languages.

In other words, there are reasons for ao-called "Black English". Talkin that talk didn't just come out of nowhere, but has its roots in Mother Africa.

Click this link for more information on African American Vernacular English


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 10:23 PM

An "standard" aspect of African American Vernacular English is the double negative: {for example, I ain't got nothin to do."

See this excerpt from an online article on the use of double negatives:

"In Standard English using a double-negative violates the rules of syntax. In Black English Vernacular, however, double-negatives are frequently employed. Below are two responses to the question "did you break the glass?" Can you pick out the double-negative?


I didn't do it.

I didn't do nothing.

Many observers over the years have wrongly thought that Black English Vernacular resulted from a poor command of English. That is, that it was riddled with mistakes. This prejudice led to a court case in 1979, when a school system in Ann Arbor Michigan refused to recognize Black English Vernacular as a bona fide language, and refused to use it as a foundation from which to teach Black elementary students Standard English.

Based on the testimony from sociolinguist William Labov, the court ruled that Black English Vernacular comprises a linguistic system with its own phonology, semantics and rules of grammar. By simply looking at Black English Vernacular as a series of mistakes, teachers failed to understand its logic and structures, and this proved to be a barrier to teaching students Standard English. The court did not rule that children had to be taught in Black English Vernacular, but that teachers had to develop a strategy for teaching Standard English to students who enter school speaking Black English Vernacular (Ferraro 1995:124-125)"

-snip-

Source: Black English Vernacular

****

BTW, "Ebonics" is coined from the a clip of the word "Ebony" and the and added to the word "phonics."

Since it's essential that people in the USA know how to speak and write [standard] English, I'm not a supporter of the use of Black English in public school's curriculum. I believe that there is a time and place for speaking Black English. And-imo-that time is not during formal classroom sessions. However, teachers should recognize that some students regularly use this language, and need to learn standard English grammar and vocabulary. To constantly correct a child's oral and written language may eventually result in that child learning mainstream English, but may also foster in that child a distaste for formal learning.

And we shouldn't want that since "a mind is a terrible thing to waste".


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 10:26 PM

Ugh!! I made a mistake with the first word of a sentence about standard English. "an" is supposed to be "a"

[See, I knew that.]


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 02:38 AM

Double negatives used to be perfectly acceptable standard English. Chaucer and Shakespeare are riddled with them.

It's only in more recent centuries that they became unfashionable and "wrong."

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:45 AM

The language of my youth was full of things like 'He do be' for 'he is' and 'he bain't' for 'he isn't'. Seems the double positive was just as common as the double negative.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Jeanie
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 04:25 AM

"Do any of you notice that type of thing where you live ?"
Yes, Peace. In East London, and spreading out into the county of Essex, it's very common to hear "done" in place of "did" throughout the whole conjugation of the past tense of "to do", e.g. "I done that; he done it; she never done that !" etc.

Likewise with the verb "to be": "Where was you ?". "We was going down the club." "They was wearin their new gear what they got off the market."

Likewise the double negative: "I didn't do nuffink, Miss, I swear !"

I recently moved from just outside Greater London in Essex further north into Essex and closer to the Suffolk border. It's less than an hour's drive further out, but into a totally different linguistic world. Some of the children being brought up here make the East London-type regional "non-grammaticisms", (and with East London vowels !) but a much larger proportion do not.

I suppose the area I now live in is "on the cusp" : some are people whose families moved out from the East End to Essex, but still close to London, a couple of generations ago, and have now moved further out again, still retaining at least a little of the East London accent, alongside others who come from generations who have lived in this area, and have quite a marked rural "burr". It makes for a very interesting mix of overheard accents in the town.

When talking about English regionalisms (accent and grammar), dare I mention the subject of Class ? Social class and level of education still play a great part in the presence or absence of these regionalisms in England, probably more so than in any other part of the English-speaking world.

- jeanie


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 07:06 AM

The problem is that English (for hundreds of years) routinely used double -- even triple negatives in Chaucer's case! -- to state that something was not just in the negative, but emphatically in the negative.

Then some lout decided that these expressions were not "mathematically" correct and should not be used anymore.

Class may have kicked in there; if it began as some posh fad, country folk would be the last to hear of, or adhere to, it.

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 07:40 AM

"He never yet no vileynye ne sayde. In al his lyf unto no maner wight"
Chaucer
"He never said nothing bad in all his life to nobody."
Modern English (my transliteration)
You are almost certainly correct on the class factor of this Fionn.
I have always been fond of , what I believe to be ,the Black American phrase "It don't make no never mind."


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 08:15 AM

"It don't make no never mind."

This one may actually be Southern or Appalachian in origin; my maternal family uses it all the time.

While continental Africanisms may have trickled down into modern Ebonics, Southern country-dialect definately had an impact as well.
Good example: "ax" / "ask". This is something rural English speakers would get dinged for all the time, in America AND England (ex: Tolkien uses the phrase in a snippet of Samwise's poetry, just to make him sound really country-fried.)

It is, in fact, an Old English word: acsian, that was used commonly alongside ascian. Both were recognized dialectal variants for the word "ask".

(Around Shakespeare's day the "sk" form of the word beat out the "ks" one, and became more or less standard.)

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: freda underhill
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 08:18 AM

This is a link to an interesting site about Australian Aboriginal English .

This page of the site examines a different way of using language - for example, in many varieties of Aboriginal English, questions are often not used to seek important information. People use more indirect ways of finding things out, using hinting or triggering statements. Silence is also important to many Aboriginal interactions, and unlike the use of silence in many Western interactions, it is not seen to be an indication that communication has broken down.

My brother is a linguist and has studied a couple of Aboriginal languages in Western Australia. he told me that one dialect has some Portuguese words in it, and that linguists consider there may have been a shipwreck at some time before European settlement, and that the sailors stayed and integrated with the locals, bringing some of their words into the language.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 10:01 AM

"While continental Africanisms may have trickled down into modern Ebonics, Southern country-dialect definately had an impact as well."

I agree.

****

"Fixin" is another word that appears to be a Southern {American} thing regardless of race. Example: "I'm fixin to go to the store".

And what about "tote"= "carry"? That's also a Southern {American} word that I believe transcends race/ethnicity. I have a book on African words that are found in American English. That book documents this word as being from the same Wolof {Senegal & The Gambia} language that gave us "dig" {meaning "to understand" or "to like"}.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 10:15 AM

"Ax" is Still in common usage in parts of the North East of England as a synonym for ask.
I,ve often wondered about "Fixin'" which is not used in Britain in this sense.
Tote is retained in tote bag (a small shopping bag)but rarely heard otherwise.
Bill Bryson whilst primarily famous as a travel writer is very readable on this subject.
I would particularly recommend "Made in America."


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 11:02 AM

'I am reading a book entitled "Sussex as She Was Spoke".'

Sorry. That should read "Sussex as She Wus Spoke". And thanks all for the input.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Splott Man
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 11:31 AM

In Caardiff (my spelling), verbs tend to be conjugated... I does, you does, he, she or it does. And there is the verb that's becoming pretty universal... "I never" for "I didn't".


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bert
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 12:36 PM

Loved your post Azizi.

When English is spoken by people with other languages there is a tendency to use English words with their native grammar. This sounds wrong in English but if you know the grammar of the other language then it usually makes good sense. The verb 'to be' is a very cobbled up verb in English so it's often very different in other languages.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 12:46 PM

For example: it's funny how many Gaelic grammar-patterns made it into the Irish dialects of English. :)

(Sometimes I've thought of sitting down to compile a list of them all, but usually find something better to do. lol)

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 01:07 PM

Vernacular and 'localized' dialects can be useful, fun and important in establishing an identity and emphasizing one's heritage. The difficulty arises when having only that form interferes with one's ability to communicate outside a narrow area, look for a job, or do modern things like establishing a web site.

Unfortunately, there are way too many folks who cannot switch into the 'standard' form of a language in order to compete when necessary.

"The boy turn around and say to his mother" is fine at home, but is not how to compose a paper in a college English course. (This is an exact quote from the paper of a star football player when I was in college).

I am not sure how to approach this problem, as there is, in many ethnic groups, a strong aversion to even be heard "talking like the man".

   When demographic isolation implicitly led to regional & ethnic language diversity, it all made sense....but the with modern travel and internet situation, I'd love to see people retain their ethnic 'identity' while still being able to converse in what the Germans call "Die Umgangsprache", or the basic form of the language you'd hear on the evening TV news.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 01:39 PM

Now I know,
Cos MG tells me so
We all anti-semantic here!


Otherwise AAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHH! God save the Queen's English.

And incidentally, one of the main reasons for Chaucer to write in "English" was to cock a snook at the predominant use of other languages (mainly french, but also latin) as the written languages of the ruling classes of England in that period. So there is every reason to imagine that he would have written as he would have imagined bumpkins to speak. His usages, particularly in rendered speech, are likely to reflect the obverse of the correct grammar of the period. He of course was risen from the upper middle class very much into the nobility.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 01:57 PM

"cock a snook"??? *grin*...is that Chaucer, the Queen's English, 'bumpkin speech', or just local vernacular where you are, Richard?

I suppose I can interpret it in the context, but I confess, I never heard it before.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 02:58 PM

Place your hand open palmed in front of your face touch your nose with your thumb whilst waggling your fingers.
That's cocking a snook.
Incidentally Bill check out any posting by Geordie Porgie for an authentic flavour of the Dialect of my own area.
I can & often do talk like that.
However (though you'd never know it from my typing) I spent a long time in postgraduate education & am capable of communicating in terms appropriate to that environment as well.
I say this not to boast but to serve as an example of the duality you suggest.
I think in time this will become a more & more commonplace occurence.
Here's hoping.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:04 PM

"I think in time this will become a more & more commonplace occurence."

A friend of mine mentioned that much dialect is getting lost because many small towns are being used as bedroom communities for larger centers (centres) and as a result the local speech is being 'standardized'. Anyone else seen this happening?


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:04 PM

oh...well, we in the colonies simply call that "thumbing your nose". I must say, your nomenclature is more colorful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:07 PM

"Cock a snook" is quite old fashioned. But so, on many matters of language (but not, as you will see, always the punctuation of conjunctions) am I.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:18 PM

Peace...yes, of course there is gradual standardization of some language elements. What I see most, however, is rapid spread of current slang & vernacular rather than adoption of "Die Umgangsprache". In some areas the whole point is to BE different.

(Google has made it a point to spell check searches and offer 'suggestions' if a term is spelled with a non-standard variation. This helps with dyslexic typists like me, but does very little to encourage learning the accepted spellings.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:19 PM

Peace,during the Seventies & Eighties I lived in what had been a rural village but had become a dormitory suburb.
It was Home to people who had come from amongst other places Kent,Lancashire,Essex,Yorkshire, Ireland & in one case the U.S.
All of these people eventually to a greater or lesser extent ended up adopting the local variant of geordie.
I think local speech is more resilient than we sometimes give it credit for.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:33 PM

That is something I am glad to hear. I think it's a thing for great sorrow when languages die out. One that comes to mind is Manx which has been gone for over 60(?) years now. Much besides the language is lost when they die.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Mrrzy
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 03:44 PM

My kids are bilingual in standard English and whatever they talk at school - ebonics, I think.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 04:27 PM

Pennsylvania Dutch is an excellent example of a language that has adapted and survived in Linguistic isolation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 05:06 PM

Charming article here, pertaining to the WV-Elizabethan connection: The Dialect of The Appalachian People "

The "Lincoln Co." to which the author keeps referring to is my mother's birthplace. Some of these expressions I remember pretty vividly, some are altogether new. (I have a feeling there are even dialectal variations from one valley to the next!)

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 05:58 PM

I'm not sure if the term Ebonics is the correct reference for what I speak or what others {Black or non-Black such as Mrrzy's children] speak.

I know that sometimes I purposely use "downhome" {i.e. American Southern} language styles to 'color' my speech, making it hipper, "fresher", more informal, and [I think} more ethnic.

I sprinkle some "old school" rhyming sayings in my speech and writing {such as "My name is Bess and I ain't in this mess".{directed to a person or group that asks your opinion about something or want you to involve yourself in a problem or "situation" that has nothing to do with you}.

I also like non-rhyming but clipped sayings that have a recognizable pattern-such as "Don't start none, won't be none" {meaning, if you don't start trouble, there won't be any trouble}.

But I also like the way the hip-hop culture plays with words and phrases. This is "new school" as opposed to "old school". I think that [predominately African American] hip-hop language pratices can be credited with keeping American English fresh. Actually I think Black speech and culture has served this role throughout in the USA since at least the 19th century.

Words & phrases such as "My bad" {"I'm sorry"},"chillin" {relaxing}, and "off the chain" & "the bomb" {very good}, are American slang terms that were popularized {if not created} by hip hop rappers and others associated with that culture. I think that these words and phrases are what most Black Americans and non-Black Americans mean when they say they speak "Ebonics". Many of these words and phrases are updated versions of now retired slang terms. For instance, "chillin" comes from "chill" which comes from "cool" but it is no longer cool to use "cool".

Click Hip Hop Talk for discussion of hip-hop words and sayings.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 06:02 PM

I would also like to add that African Americans are not a homogeneous people. In addition to regional differences among African Americans, there are many different ethnicities {including African Americans with known Caribbean ancestry; African Americans with known continental African ancestry; African Americans with known European ancestry; African Americans with Native American ancestry; and African Americans with known Asian and Pacific Islander ancestry. For example, my mother was born in this country, but her mother & father, and most of her siblings were born in Barbados. My father was adopted {or raised in a foster home in Michigan from an early age} so I don't know his ancestry. Consequently, I have no known Southern relatives {well, anyway I didn't until my sister and other relatives moved "down South".

One sub-set of African Americans are the Gullah {or Geechee} people of South Carolina and the Sea Isles of Georgia. For those who don't know that culture {like me} the Gullah accent sounds very much like an African or a West Indian accent.

If interested, you can click on this website for
Examples of Gullah speech


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Amos
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 06:03 PM

Azizi:

Did you catch Mafia 3-6 ( I think that was the name) doing their Oscar winning song "Sometimes it's hard out here for a Pimp" last night. Talk about fresh! I liked it.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 06:15 PM

Change may be, but is not always, beneficial. This is as true in language as in music. It is not always true in music.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Azizi
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 06:24 PM

Hi Amos. Sorry I don't know that song.

I rarely watch tv.. and I'm glad that "Sometimes it's hard out here for a Pimp". {no pun intended}.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Amos
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 07:30 PM

It was performed on the Oscars and was chosen for an Oscar shortly thereafter; an amazing choreographed right-down street scene with music.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 06 - 07:31 PM

I read that the lyrics were 'cleaned up' for the show, however.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 03:19 AM

Interesting article , Fionn I notice the writer acknowledges Northumbrian roots for some words & phrases, some of which are still in use in present day Northumbria. These include the "Ungrammatical" use of "Them","Deef" & the characteristically blunter "Colder than a witch's Tit"


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 12:34 PM

Not to mention "bile" for boil, "pizen" for poison...

You'd swearm there's parts of the dialect that never got touched by the Great Vowel Shift.

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Cluin
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 08:44 PM

Somebody told me recently that the expression "no word of a lie" was a local one here. But I disagreed. I'm sure I've heard it elsewhere.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 08:54 PM

Sounds like something that would be said by a disgruntled golfer.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 08:58 PM

I work mostly in the London area travelling to and from Norfolk every day. Without no word of a lie unless I talk slowly no-one understands a word I say.
The number of people I have come up to me in the course of a week and say "Where are you actually from?" is no one's guess. `Norfolk` is not just a dialect it is a Way Of Life. When I am standing in the middle of London it's a great feeling to be able to take Norfolk with you and say to yourself, "Blarst Me, oi watta be gittin on hum soon!"

That is from here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Cluin
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 10:03 PM

I told the guy he was fulla shit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 10:11 PM

"fulla shit" a local expression deriving from the Linlithgow area of Scotland.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Mar 06 - 10:16 PM

The myth has it that Lord Ochiltree boasted he had the finest abundance of crops in the region due to the nature of the rich manure produced by his Clydesdale horses. The locals scoffed that Lord Ochiltree was full shit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 07:03 AM

Double negatives, and split infinitives for that matter, did not make sense in classical Latin. The more scholarly people in times gone all learnt Latin and therefore tried to be 'better' than the 'ordinary' people by not using such devices. There is no reason at all to not add extra negatives, or split infinitives, in standard English.

By making sure we don't not lapse into that there furrin tripe we can all boldy go where no language has gone before..;-)

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 07:36 AM

...and then, there's rhyming Cockney street-slang, which is enough to make anyone but a geezer's head explode. :)

Just for fun:

Here's a 'bot (kind of like the Google Language Tools from the "Mangled Song Lyrics" thread) for translating standard English into Cockney.

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 03:40 PM

One Gaelicism that has come down into Irish English is a tendency to avoid Yes and No in answers. "Did you do that?" "I did", "Are you coming?" "I am" and so forth.

It sometimes gets misunderstood as being a bit evasive.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Cluin
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 03:46 PM

And the emphatically affirmative "Fuckin' ay!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 05:03 PM

Cluin...that's a new variation on that expression...at least the spelling is....tell me, how do you pronounce it>


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 05:15 PM

That's emhatic, but it's essentially English. There are no words "Yes" and "No" in Irish, anymore than there are in Latin. Ways of saying it, but no single words.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 05:18 PM

"Fuckin' ay!" This also derives from a Scottish saying. Well, it can be argued that it may be Irish as it comes from a myth off of Rathlin Island, which lies between Ireland and the Mull of Kintyre. It may surprise you that it has no derogratory meaning. The story goes that there once lived a dark swarthy character, a sailor who originally arrived from England by the name of Timothy Fawkin. He never warmed up to the local population and as time went on rumours spread that he had the evil eye. Thus, is the origin of 'Fuckin ay'.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Cluin
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 05:24 PM

Ay as in hay. Not aye as in aye.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 05:29 PM

Exactly, the local dialect on Rathlin Island prononces it as Hay. It gets rather cold and windy there and they tend to cut short any expressive, excessive verbage from their words. I mean, wouldn't you if you lived there?


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 06:54 PM

hmmm...I have mused and posted on "fuckin' ***" before... I first heard it in about 1969 as 'aye'...meaning "absolutely yes" ...and a web search will get you many of that usage, as well as plenty of the other. I am guessing that 'aye' is the origin, as aye=yes, but that someone saw it in print, did not know how to pronounce 'aye'...said 'ay' or, as it usually shows up in print "Fuckin A!"...and off we went!

Stuff often changes like that...as in Mondegreens.

I have seen no definitive study, but I can't imagine how 'ay' or 'A' would appear first. Any other ideas would be interesting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: bobad
Date: 08 Mar 06 - 07:01 PM

I thought it was a Canadianism as in " Fuckin' A, eh!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: GUEST, Topsie
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 05:56 AM

On the presence, and meaning, of 'yes' and 'no' in a language -
I have noticed an increasing tendency for people being interviewed on radio, when asked a question, to begin their answer with "Yes no ..."


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 07:58 AM

It's interesting to see how both Gaelic (and Welsh for that matter) and Latin differ in their means of getting around the lack of having a single "yes" or "no" word.

In Classic Latin they'd use adverbs like Certe ["certainly"] or Minime ["not at all"], etc. (IIRC, Sic ["thus"] eventually started getting used in Vulgar Latin as "yes", and evolved into si and its variations in the romance dialects. Same as non [lit. "not," "un-"] for "no.")

Irish and Scots (Welsh too, for that matter) as McGraw indicates, use a different technique: they re-state the question, and throw either the positive or negative form of the verb back at you.

"Do you know that song?"
"I do not."

"Are you going to get married?"
"We are."

"Have they ever been to Cork?"
"They have not."

"Is Sioned your sister?"
"She is."

Moral of the story: best not to ask close-ended questions in any of the above languages. ;)

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 10:14 AM

Would you say that again, Fionn?


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 10:43 AM

Just fleshing out McGrath of Harlow's points a little further.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 11:29 AM

Thanks, buddy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 11:55 AM

"Will you give me a straight Yes or No to my question?"

"I will not."


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Peace
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 12:16 PM

'"Will you give me a straight Yes or No to my question?"'

Maybe . . . .


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 12:56 PM

'"Will you give me a straight Yes or No to my question?"'

"That depends on whether you'll apologize for stealing six of my best cattle last week."

"I only did that because you moved my boundary stones in the middle of the night again, you blackguard."

"I only did THAT because you eloped with my sister, you Saxon."

"That was ten years ago."

"You're right. Buy you a pint?"

"I thought you'd never ask."

THAT'S why there are no closed-ended questions. :P


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Arne
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 02:02 PM

Yes, studying insects can be pretty disgusting:

"Some ant! Icks!!"

Cheers,


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 02:18 PM

There used to be a game show on the BBC called "Yes and No". The idea was that the contestant had to avoid saying the words, and the host had to try to trap them into doing it. It was quite entertaining on its way - they'd gallantly go along answering any manner of questions - and then get tripped into letting a forbidden word slip in an aside.

But I don't think they ever tried putting that one on Radio Eireann, because it would have been extremely boring.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 02:28 PM

Wasn't that game-show referenced in a Monty Python sketch?

All roads do seem to lead to Python eventually...

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Mar 06 - 03:14 PM

It was.


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 04:41 AM

I always thought "Fuckin' ay!" was short for "Fuckin' A Right!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Windsinger
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 11:47 AM

Purple Foxx,

What I'm surprised the article doesn't mention, is how Yorkshire English in particular also influenced Appalachian -- or at least, the Lincoln Co. dialect of it. (In addition to the Scots-Irish, there was a smattering of poor farmers from northern England who relocated there. A lot of them came from the Yorkshire countryside.)

For those Yanks who don't recognize the lingo or its thick accent: it's the one used by the servants in the film "The Secret Garden." Also the Brit-com "Last Of The Summer Wine" (PBS airs it from time to time.)

Interestingly enough, it's also the native accent of Sean Bean (Boromir from "Lord of the Rings"). He rarely speaks that way when acting; so the first time I heard him talk naturally, with all those broooooad northern vowels, my jaw just about hit the floor!

Slán,

~Fionn

www.geocities.com/children_of_lir


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Subject: RE: BS: Etymology, Semantics
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 12:02 PM

Bill Bryson notes "poorly" & "right good" as Americanisms taken from Northern English dialects.
"Right good" in the form "reet good" is indeed definitively Yorkshire.
Bryson also reminds his readers that some of the Mayflower's passengers hailed from Yorkshire.
He also mentions that slightly further North in what is now County Durham you will find the towns of Washington & Franklin.
The ancestral homes of George Washington & Benjamin Franklin.


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