Hello. Welcome to my talk page. If there is something that you wish to discuss, please feel free to do so. However, I ask that you remain civil and cordial if you can. I can sometimes be a little hotheaded, but please don't let that get to you.

cancel, travelEdit

Hi, I reverted your most recent edits as too controversial to be done without any prior discussion. What evidence do you have? I recommend a WT:TR thread as the most appropriate forum to discuss this. Mglovesfun (talk) 18:11, 14 June 2012 (UTC)


First off, I did not see your comments before I reverted twice. Second, I did not mean my sign-off message as being offensive. Third, while it's fine to mark them differently than I had, I hardly believe my edits to be worthy of a block.

You have (essentially) blocked constructive edits from my account. I would appreciate if my edits could be changed to the way -sche marked them. Tharthan (talk) 19:08, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

The whole point of discussion is waiting for someone's comments before continuing to edit war. If your message was not meant to be offensive, then I don't understand why you would be bringing up something so unrelated (and G-d is a touchy subject). Finally, I think that there is a weak case against you as far as POV-pushing goes, but the block was justified by your edit warring and attacking attitude (essentially calling Ruakh's edits vandalism). --Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:23, 14 August 2012 (UTC)


None of your new German entries have headwords. See the format of existing German nouns and verbs for help, or preferably, read Wiktionary:About German. SemperBlotto (talk) 15:49, 13 August 2013 (UTC)

Section editing.Edit

If you click the 'edit' link next to a section header, you'll end up with a more-useful edit summary that links to the specific section you're editing. This is especially useful in cases like your recent comment at Wiktionary:Tea room: the whole purpose of your comment was to try to get people to see and reply to your discussion, but because you didn't use section-editing, your edit summary didn't contain a link to the discussion, making it needlessly difficult for people to do so. —RuakhTALK 07:39, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. I was unaware of that. Tharthan (talk) 11:07, 2 October 2013 (UTC)


I questioned your etymology of ‎Tauber in Wiktionary:Etymology scriptorium#Tauber, your input over there would be appreciated. -- 01:36, 25 October 2013 (UTC)


Who exactly pronounces lad as /lʌd/? It's certainly not the majority of New England. Is it a Rhode Island thing? Is it a Virginia thing? Or is it just you? --WikiTiki89 20:22, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

After reviewing the page, I have come to the conclusion that there is a slight mislabelling to that audio file. It would be more accurate to say that it is an unstressed pronunciation. I do hear it around my area, but I'm not particularly conserved with its timeless "archiving" on Wiktionary or anything like that. In fact, I'd like the pronunciation to die off personally; only having recorded it for accuracy purposes. I'd take no issue if you just listed /lʌd/ as an unstressed dialectal pronunciation and removed my audio file entirely. Tharthan (talk) 22:31, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Ok. Do you think it would be wrong to transcribe it as /ləd/? Also, can you give me an example sentence in which you would pronounce it that way? --WikiTiki89 22:34, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Nope, /ləd/ actually seems more accurate per situatio.

"He's a tough young lad /læd/ with strong ambitions, but /bət/ lads /ləds/ are /ɚ/ lads /ləds/, and /n̩/ there's /ðɛɚz/ only so much he /i:/ can /kn̩/ do." Tharthan (talk) 22:46, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

Interesting. Did you mean /lədz/? --WikiTiki89 22:53, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Yes. Tharthan (talk) 00:24, 4 February 2014 (UTC)


Regarding the reversion of the changes I made, the definition specifically mentions an "ancestor language". This agrees with the term as used in historical linguistics. A cognate specifically refers to something related through ancestry, not borrowing. Old Norse is not an ancestor language to English, just one that was a source of many borrowings. Thus, skirt—though related to shirt—is not cognate with it. —Leftmostcat (talk) 05:30, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

You seem to have an incorrect understanding of etymology. The two terms are cognate because they both are derived from the same Proto-Germanic etymon. This is common knowledge amongst even many non-linguists. Tharthan (talk) 11:18, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm well aware of the related etymologies, but linguistic usage of cognate refers specifically to words which have a direct ancestral link. Thus, Old Norse skyrta is cognate with shirt (and so, it would seem, is the Icelandic), but skirt is a borrowing. The following definition from Lyle Campbell's Historical Linguistics is illustrative:
Cognate: a word (or morpheme) which is related to a word (morpheme) in sister languages by reason of these forms having been inherited by these sister languages from a common word (morpheme) of the proto-language from which the sister languages descend.
Note that skirt does not fit this definition. English does not inherit it from Proto-Germanic but borrows it from Old Norse. As a side note, your statement that I "seem to have an incorrect understanding of etymology" comes across as confrontational. Though I'm certain this isn't what you meant, it may be worth keeping in mind. —Leftmostcat (talk) 21:08, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
If one considers the possibility of the word being borrowed into late Old English from Old Norse (which is, as I'm sure you can concede, at least possible), then perhaps the word could have been conflated with northern dialectal forms of the word "shirt" (for instance, the dialects that were then spoken in Northumbria and Scotland, which are known to have often reverted /ʃ/ to /sk/) In that case, the word would be at least partially derived from Old English scyrte, which is inherited from Proto-Germanic *skurtijǭ, and would thus be cognate to Modern English shirt by the definition you gave.
And my apologies for my questionable wording of that sentence; 'Twas not my intention to seem hostile.
On a side note, the definition of the word cognate that you presented seems to be implying that doublets, etymological twins and loanwords of any kind cannot be cognate to any other words within that language, even if the word that they were derived from would. That seems quite far-fetched to my ears. I'm relatively certain that the word "cognate" isn't so starkly restrained that it would exclude doublets. Tharthan (talk) 22:43, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Revert at feyEdit

I'm not sure if your edit comment was completely correct: a lot of the "magical, otherworldy" senses could have developed from the "fated to die" meaning- the semantic change isn't that great. Either way, you don't address that kind of issue by deleting huge chunks of content.

If you think they're separate, then change the current etymology to Etymology 1, and create another Etymology 2 for the other meaning. Distribute the content between the two etymologies, duplicating any headers so that splitting a section won't leave one half without a header. Change level 3 headers (with "===") to level 4 headers (with "===="), etc. so that they all nest under the etymology sections. Anything such as pronunciation that's common to both can be moved ahead of the first etymology section.

See WT:ELE for more details.

Thanks! Chuck Entz (talk) 22:30, 29 June 2014 (UTC)


Look at the German entry for the German word. The pronunciation is not the "German" one you claim. Equinox 20:38, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

Correct, hence why it says "imitating the German". If you would like to add the literal German pronunciation to that list, that's fine. I've already placed three other pronunciations. /ˈjuːbə/ or /ˈɪuːbə/ seem to be the most common ones that I have heard, but I have indeed heard /ˈyːbə/ as well. I've never heard a literal /ˈyːbɐ/ or /ˈʏbɐ/ though. Tharthan (talk) 21:58, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
Where have you heard this? --WikiTiki89 23:29, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
On the Web, mostly. I've heard /ˈɪuːbə/ in public though. It's sort of like the deal with "pwn" I think. There are several pronunciations due to it being primarily a "word of the web" in English. Tharthan (talk) 00:21, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
You mean in online videos? I hear it more often in person than online and I have only heard /uːbɚ/. --WikiTiki89 00:25, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I don't hear it offline much, but when I do, it's usually /ˈjuːbə/ (or /ˈɪuːbə/). I've heard /uːbɚ/ as well, but more so years ago, in the early 2000s. I dunno. Like I said, I've personally never heard people pronounce "pwn" as /piˈoʊn/ or /pɔːn/, but I don't doubt that people do. Tharthan (talk) 00:40, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I always hear "pwn" as /poʊn/. I also don't necessarily think that /ˈjuːbə/ is due to mimicking German. It could more easily be just reading the word as it is spelled. --WikiTiki89 00:48, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I have only really heard /pwoʊn/ or /poʊn/, though I've heard some of the others on perhaps a few occasions.

Maybe, or maybe not. My dialect doesn't read "u" as /ju/ in those ambiguous words. It tends to read it as /u/ in those words. And the people I am referring to tend to speak rhotically. Plus, that still doesn't explain /ˈɪuːbə/ Tharthan (talk) 01:29, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

I don't think that how you read u- has anything to do with dialect. As for /ˈɪuːbə/, can you link me to a video or something that has this pronunciation? --WikiTiki89 01:33, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
My dialect has a sort of /ɪu/-/u/ distinction in words. "u" is /u/, "ue" and "ew" are /ɪu/. /ju/ is neither of those. The word isn't spelt u-ber, either, so they couldn't be looking at it like that. And, like I said, their speech is rhotic. Hence why I'm pretty sure they're imitating the German when they say it that way. Tharthan (talk) 01:43, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
How would you pronounce use? When I say /juː/, I am referring to whatever pronunciation you have for the u in use. --WikiTiki89 01:54, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I would pronounce "use" with /juː/, but not (say) "ube" if that were a word. It's hard to explain, it's like... "avenue" is /ævɛnɪu/, not /ævɛnu/ or /ævɛnju/. I guess words that are already particularly well established with /ju/ would use /ju/, but not words that are not. That's probably the best way I can explain it. Tharthan (talk) 02:01, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
How sure are you that you don't also pronounce noon as /nɪun/? --WikiTiki89 02:04, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
100%. No question. I say /nu:n/. But I pronounce "new" /nɪu/. Tharthan (talk) 02:07, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
Ok, because I pronounce both with a /ɪu/-like sound. The other thing is that this sound in your dialect only exists after coronal consonants, so it is hard to say how it can be used at the beginning of uber. --WikiTiki89 02:08, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

re: Somewhat random, but...Edit

My mind keeps reading your name as "Colonel MacKenzie", which makes me always read your statements in my head with the voice of an military veteran. I just wanted to mention this, because my mind has been doing this for years. Tharthan (talk) 21:36, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

I am indeed a veteran, but USN not army. If it helps at all; when you see my name try thinking of "O'Connel" or even better..."Oh! Connel!" Hope this helps. --Connel MacKenzie (talk) 22:33, 30 September 2014 (UTC)


Hello. Most of the US pronounces "aunt" as IPA(key): [ɛənt] based upon æ-tensing occurring universally before an alveolar nasal. I gave the narrower transcription to demonstrate more accurately how Americans actually pronounce the word, aligning also with audio example. 15:14, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
Such tensing does not occur universally across the country. Furthermore, I have absolute naught concern for how the Midwest (read: place that I do not care about) and the West coast (read: place that I care about even less) pronounce things. The Midwest and West coast, particularly the latter, are the most linguistically unconservative dialects in the country, and (myself being a speaker of the exact opposite type of dialect, one of the most linguistically conservative dialects in the country) I hold nothing but scorn and loathing for those over-highlighted in the media, over-spoken in society and over-hyped dialectal dregs.
Ehem... pardon my rambling. It's just that I have a bitter hatred of those particular dialects (save New York's, Minnesota's and a small few others' subdialects). The West Coast's dialect in particular reminds me of the wretched Cockney dialect of England, which over the past half decade has been befouling the idiolects of more-or-less every single youngster in the whole of the British Isles (and even partially so in Australia amongst the very young males). Utterly detestable, and should have their media presences completely taken away from them. Tharthan (talk) 02:23, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
[Urrgh..nrghh..aaghrrh..] Sorry, I'm from the Los Angeles area (my mom was from Iowa), and I was forgetting to speak one of your approved dialects for a second... Seriously, though, to my West Coast ears, IPA(key): [ɛənt] sounds somewhat rural / Southern-influenced, not standard at all. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:29, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, sorry about the rage rant above. I don't actually have a problem with people speaking any of those dialects (dialects exist for a reason, and people should be proud of who they are and where they come from, ideally), I just wish that they would stop engaging in dialectal creep like they have been. Heck, when I first joined Wiktionary years ago, there was a clearly tipped scale (systematic bias?) towards coverage of West Coast & Midwestern terms and pronunciations, with little if any on New England pronunciation or terminology (the latter had a good several entries, but the former basically had nothing at all).
From what I am aware, the only standard pronunciations of aunt are /ɑ(ː)nt/, which is the standard in the Received Pronunciation of the UK; in Australia; in New England and Virginia, as well as sporadically elsewhere in the United States, and /ænt/, which is the standard in the northern UK; in Canada; and in much of the United States save New England and Virginia and the occasional sporadic occurrence.
So I have absolutely no clue as to what the IP is on about. Tharthan (talk) 05:13, 9 February 2015 (UTC)

Bad audio filesEdit

When you run across a bad audio file added by DerbethBot (e.g. at whilst), removing it doesn't do much good, since DerbethBot will just add it again (and again, and again, and again...). To really get rid of it, you have to go to Commons and go through the process to get rid of it there. Chuck Entz (talk) 23:08, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

Ah, I see. Thanks for the heads-up. Tharthan (talk) 23:37, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

How to format etymologiesEdit

Please note the changes I made here and copy this kind of formatting (with {{etyl}} and {{m}}) for your other etymologies; it facilitates linking and categorisation, as befits a multilingual dictionary. Thank you! —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 00:43, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

I shall try my best. I have never been good with formatting etymologies. Nevertheless, I shall try my best. Tharthan (talk)


Don’t forget to turn off your censor when editing Wiktionary! — Ungoliant (falai) 18:24, 19 June 2015 (UTC)

Whoops! Did I do it again?
Where was it this time? Tharthan (talk) 18:25, 19 June 2015 (UTC)
Oh, I see. I made the edit again with the filter turned off. Thanks for the heads-up!


Please refrain from editorializing, as you did at kiln- especially in concise sections such as "Pronunciation". The fact that the "n" was once pronounced is an interesting piece of historical trivia, but irrelevant to modern English. The fact is, the n was long gone, so modern occurences really are spelling pronunciation and not a resurrection of ancient usage. It's the same with the AAVE pronunciation of ask as "aks": yes, Old English had acsian, but modern occurences are due to metathesis, not to African Americans suddenly remembering forms from a thousand years ago. Chuck Entz (talk) 14:00, 29 July 2015 (UTC)

Whilst I do not personally like the pronunciation of "ask" as "aks", in its case, actually, it is possible that the pronunciation was retained from acsian, as African American vernacular English got that pronunciation from local Southern dialects that may well have preserved that pronunciation (as Chaucer had in Middle English times). Note the British dialects that use "waps" for "wasp" like in Old and Middle English dialectal forms.
In kiln's case, it is highly unlikely that it was retained. My point was that the pronunciation with the "n" is not "incorrect" or "uneducated", and is actually quite the contrary. Also, mind you, I have never run into anyone pronounce "kiln" as "kill" at any point during my life, so it's not like that pronunciation (the one that follows the spelling) is stigmatised or anything like that (at least, not outside of specific areas maybe). Tharthan (talk) 14:10, 29 July 2015 (UTC)


Hi Tharthan. I’ve created the entry. As for whether the etymology is the obvious guy + man, yes and no! — Ungoliant (falai) 17:04, 24 December 2015 (UTC)

So if I understand right, it comes from Nigerian Pidgin English, but is semantically equivalent to guy + man. Is that right? Tharthan (talk) 18:53, 24 December 2015 (UTC)
I was unable to find the etymology of the pidgin word, but I’m 90% sure it’s from English guy + man. The reason that I’m not 100% sure is that there is a book glossing “guyman dibia” as “a stylish wizard” (without mentioning the language). — Ungoliant (falai) 19:14, 24 December 2015 (UTC)


Hey. You've improved a lot since joining us all these years ago. Would you like to be given administrator duties? --Stubborn Pen (talk) 00:07, 9 January 2016 (UTC)

Wow, err... I would be honoured to. I use Wiktionary a lot; every day pretty much, and I already revert vandalism plenty too. Tharthan (talk) 00:18, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
Alright then. Ask someone to nominate you, in that case. I would do it, but I'm a historical Wiktionary vandal. And I'm a little drunk right now. --Stubborn Pen (talk) 00:24, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
I, err... see. But then why were you a sysop five times? Tharthan (talk) 01:21, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
  • Haha, don't mind him, Tharthan. But this does remind me that you ought to be whitelisted, so there's that. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 02:42, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
(edit conflict) His first account was a legitimate adminship, but then he abused it and was banned. Since then, he's made a game of pretending to be someone else, and several times fooled people long enough to get elected as an admin. Since then, people have gotten better at spotting him, and he's not as focused on that kind of thing as he used to be, so we have a kind of working relationship. It still is a good idea not to trust him completely.
As for adminship, you do a lot of good work, I trust you, but I don't think you're ready to be an admin yet. For that matter, you still haven't been whitelisted yet, which means no one has decided you're reliable enough to exclude your account when we check new edits. That's not bad in itself- there are lots of regular contributors who aren't whitelisted. It's just a sign that you may not yet be to a level where you can judge other people's edits. Still, that's just my assessment- it's a community decision, not mine. Chuck Entz (talk) 02:59, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
Ah, I see. Thank you for your compliments. I try my best to improve Wiktionary so that it can be the greatest and most reliable dictionary out there! Tharthan (talk) 03:21, 9 January 2016 (UTC)


Dear Tharthan, Thank you for your message. I shall follow your advice. Andrew H. Gray 09:04, 23 January 2016 (UTC)Andrew

SQUARE vowelEdit

Mary doesn't have /ɛɚ/ in Mary/merry distinguishing accents (not that GenAm is one), because there is no difference whatsoever between /ɛɚ/ and /ɛɹ/. Those two transcriptions are functionally identical. In accents where Mary is not a homophone of merry, Mary has either a longer vowel (/mɛːɹi/) or a centering diphthong (/mɛəɹi/), and in those accents, if they're rhotic, square is /skwɛːɹ/ or /skwɛəɹ/. However, GenAm is a merging accent in which Mary is /mɛɹi/ and square is /skwɛɹ/. If you want to add /kəmˈpɛːɹ/ or /kəmˈpɛəɹ/ as a pronunciation at compare, that's fine, but don't label it GenAm, because it isn't. Label it Northeastern US or something. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 15:27, 9 February 2016 (UTC)

And don't pretend there's a distinction between /ɛɹ/ and /ɛɚ/ in any accent at all, because there isn't. The two are as identical to each other as /aɪ/ and /aj/ are. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 15:28, 9 February 2016 (UTC)

"Mary doesn't have /ɛɚ/ in Mary/merry distinguishing accents (not that GenAm is one), because there is no difference whatsoever between /ɛɚ/ and /ɛɹ/."

Question: is /ɛ/ the vowel of "bet"? If not, then what is the vowel of bet? If so, then [ɛɹ] is ehhr. /ɛɚ/, however (which is actually a broad transcription for what actually ranges from /ɛɚ/ to /eɚ/ to /eɹ/) is, by definition, ehh-er, which, if nothing else, at least has a small difference in pronunciation. /eɚ/ (eh-err) and /eɹ/ (ehr/eyr), which are other ways of transcribing the vowel, are fairly encompassed under the /ɛɚ/ transcription. (talk) 15:29, 9 February 2016 (UTC)

The vowel of bet followed by /ɹ/ is exactly how I and around 60% of Americans pronounce this sound. The fact that you don't say it that way merely proves that you're not a speaker of General American. At any rate, the pronunciation section of compare is not the place for this discussion, because if Wiktionary's established transcription of the SQUARE vowel is to be changed, it will affect all the words at Rhymes:English/ɛə(ɹ) and a great many not on that page, not just compare. If you want to change Appendix:English pronunciation, it needs to be discussed at the Beer Parlor, and probably (unfortunately) put up for a vote. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 15:37, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
That's odd, because when I demonstrated such a pronunciation to you with the word "affair", you seemed to find the pronunciation sounding odd. So I don't think that you actually pronounce it the way that you think that you do. The other reason why I doubt your claim is that I have never, whether it be in movies, on television or elsewhere, heard a literal [ɛɹ] pronunciation used for those words, and believe you me, I have sharp ears. Also, General American is not a merging accent because it is a sociolect continuum, first off, which can be (and is spoken by) people in any part of the country. So, in truth, if the person has the merger when they go to speak General American, they keep it, and if they don't (unless they are so self conscious as to try and modify their speech to sound as if they are literally a Midwesterner) then they don't have it when they speak General American. Tharthan (talk) 16:02, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
Your pronunciation was artificial and represented at best one possible phonetic realization of the phoneme /ɛɹ/, which, like all phonemic representations, has more than one possible surface realization. Whether or not the phonetic realization is best transcribed as [ɛɹ] is utterly irrelevant; the phoneme is transcribed as /ɛɹ/ by all major dictionaries that use IPA to transliterate American English (which, granted, is not a huge number), including Wiktionary. If you want to change the status quo here, fine, take it to the Beer Parlor, but stop edit-warring to introduce nonstandard, redundant, and misleading transliterations in one single entry. By the way, General American is defined as American English without any of the regionalisms characteristic of the South and the Northeast. Any American who distinguishes Mary/merry (which is a regionalism of the South and Northeast) is simply not using General American, however many other regionalisms they've eliminated from their speech. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 16:10, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
That's utter draff and you know it. If that were true then that would mean that General American is just a slightly more conservative form of Midwestern dialect, which is full of its own regionalisms, and it would have no purpose being "first and foremost" in this dictionary. Early Midwestern dialect itself was derived from Western New England speech, and (although less conservative than it) still resembles it to this day. General American isn't a "region free" dialect. It is a sociolect continuum which can sound several different ways depending upon who is speaking it. Tharthan (talk) 16:13, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
Who are these 60% of Americans who speak General American, and where can I meet one? --WikiTiki89 16:37, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
Yeah (or is it "yehh"? *eyeroll*), no kidding. I hear this claim a lot about General American (or is that "Uhmurricun"?). The fact is, in truth, that the presence or lack thereof of the merry, Mary, marry merger is irrelevant to whether a speaker speaks General American, because, as I said earlier, General American is a sociolect continuum; which means that there is variation in how some things are pronounced. Tharthan (talk) 16:59, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
Yeah, it's not monolithic. General American includes both cot/caught mergers and cot/caught distinguishers. It includes both whine/wine mergers and whine/wine distinguishers. But it does not include any Mary/merry/marry distinguishers. The presence of the Mary/merry/marry distinction in a person's speech excludes that speech from being a variety of GenAm, just like nonrhoticity does, and just like making the father/bother distinction does. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 17:31, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
That makes no sense to me. Who decides what is GenAm and what isn't? --WikiTiki89 17:48, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
Clearly the great and powerful, Angr, the creator of General American, does. He must be if he's coming up with this hogwash! Angr: you are incorrect about the presence of the merry, Mary, marry merger having anything to do with whether a speaker speaks General American or not. It simply is not true. Tharthan (talk) 17:54, 9 February 2016 (UTC)

Yet another Mary-marry-merry AND GenAm dispute? Why don't we use the already-established convention of having a separate pronunciation line to deal with the merger, and another line for the mergerless ones? It worked neatly with marry and co, why not apply it further?

And about GenAm, can both sides please give some citations on whether Mary-marry-merry should be counted as GenAm? Hillcrest98 (talk) 00:46, 10 February 2016 (UTC)

General American is already known to have both wine/whine distinguishers and cot/caught distinguishers. Whether someone has the merry, Mary, marry merger or not is irrelevant to whether they speak General American. In fact, considering the wine/whine merger is considered a dialectal feature of certain areas, generally, I am appalled that a claim is being made that the merry, Mary, marry merger would "disqualify" someone from speaking General American. But, nevertheless, there is nothing to be cited here. Tharthan (talk) 01:01, 10 February 2016 (UTC)
It's Angr's turn to provide proof about his claim about GenAm and Mary-marry-merry. Hillcrest98 (talk) 01:41, 10 February 2016 (UTC)
In my opinion, GenAm should either be a standard and thus have only one pronunciation without any variation, or it should be a generalization of prestigious varieties of American English and thus include all of the variation. Based on what Angr has said above, it seems to be neither of those, which makes me very confused about what it actually is. --WikiTiki89 06:08, 10 February 2016 (UTC)
General American is just a more conservative version of the Midwestern accent. The Midwestern accent, in turn, was historically derived from the Western New England accent, to which it still resembles to this day. Tharthan (talk) 13:52, 10 February 2016 (UTC)
You answered where it came from, not what it is. --WikiTiki89 23:25, 10 February 2016 (UTC)
J.C. Wells in Accents of English defines GenAm as "that majority of American accents which do not show marked eastern or southern characteristics, including both those deriving basically from the northern speech of the Hudson Valley and upstate New York and those deriving from the midland speech of Pennsylvania" (p. 470). He also (p. 485) makes it clear that GenAm merges the following vowels before /ɹ/: near/spirit; fairy/ferry/marry; bar/sorry; war/bore/orange; you're/poor; current/furry. That doesn't mean unmerged accents don't occur in the U.S., but it does mean that accents that fail to make those mergers are not GenAm. The cot-caught merger, on the other hand, is not a necessary part of GenAm. We do not get to define GenAm however we choose; it's been defined for us by specialists. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 22:12, 4 March 2016 (UTC)
In other words, the Minnesota accent counts as GenAm...? It doesn't make sense to single out two specific regions as not belonging to GenAm and count everything else. --WikiTiki89 23:04, 4 March 2016 (UTC)
Ooh, yah! We're General American too, dontchaknow. Oof dah! *eyeroll* 23:45, 4 March 2016 (UTC)
Anyhow, the lack of the merry, Mary, marry merger does not make a dialect General American. That's bogus and I'm ignoring it as such. Tharthan (talk) 23:46, 4 March 2016 (UTC)
Are you trying reverse psychology, or was that a thinko? All Angr said was that the lack of the merry, Mary, marry merger excluded a dialect from being GenAm. Its presence wouldn't make a dialect Gen Am- it's just one of many things needed in order to do so. Chuck Entz (talk) 00:26, 5 March 2016 (UTC)
That was a typo. Tharthan (talk) 00:33, 5 March 2016 (UTC)


FYI, their and there were edited similarly. I have no strong opinion on whether the "misspelling" sections should stay or go.I think that, when one word is mistaken for another, it has been the or a usual practice to handle that with usage notes advising against confusing them, rather than with {{misspelling of}}. - -sche (discuss) 01:14, 9 April 2016 (UTC)

Thanks for the heads up, -sche. Tharthan (talk) 13:19, 9 April 2016 (UTC)

Pennsylvania GermanEdit

If you don't know the spelling, you should look it up. You shouldn't add any information to the dictionary that you're not sure of yourself. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 00:25, 15 December 2016 (UTC)

How would one look up the spelling of a Pennsylvania German word? There are few dictionaries that use a quasi-standard spelling system for Pennsylvania German. Tharthan (talk) 00:28, 15 December 2016 (UTC)
I don't edit the language, so I don't know if we have standards. If we don't, just choose some dictionary that has consistent spellings that at least try to match what speakers actually use, and follow their lead. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 00:30, 15 December 2016 (UTC)
Well here's the situation: Wiktionary kind of uses a standard for Pennsylvania German, but it's more of a quasi-standard based off of standard High German spelling. However, the (quite large) dictionary which I found uses a spelling system which roughly mimics English spelling. So I'm having to take the time to check multiple sources to compare word spellings and also check standard High German cognates so that I can convert the dictionary's words' spellings into our spelling system for Pennsylvania German. I'm trying my best to stick to the (quasi-)standard that we have. Tharthan (talk) 01:00, 15 December 2016 (UTC)

Pennsylvania GermanEdit

Stop adding etymology notes that are inaccurate. If you don't actually possess the knowledge/expertise, stop trying to add to the etymology notes. On more than one word, you've added the etymology note that words in PA German that begin with 'd' were "probably influenced by English." This is incorrect. If you look across PA German vocabulary, you will see that almost all words that begin with an intitial 't' in Standard German are devoiced to an initial 'd' in PA German. This is reflected in the dialects in the Palatinate region of Germany today that do the same thing. If you don't know what you're talking about, quit fiddling around with the pages. Steapenhyll (talk) 13:43, 28 November 2017 (UTC)

Excuse me, but there is no need for hostility or rudeness. I created a whole bunch of Pennsylvania German entries here because I genuinely took an interest in the Pennsylvania German language. I have always found it quite interesting and likeable. If I have added something inaccurate to the etymology section of some Pennsylvania German entries, please feel free to remove it. I would greatly appreciate, though, if you would not come to my talk page and start haranguing me for an honest mistake. Tharthan (talk) 15:54, 28 November 2017 (UTC)

Revert of yeahEdit

I've noticed that you've reverted my edit to yeah without comment, when I feel there is a very good reason why I removed that content from the page, as it's basically unverifiable, unprovable speculation that I've never seen anywhere else; I've never heard of a pronunciation being preserved like this, ignoring several major remodels of a vowel system. I would say that it can very easily be explained as a dialectal result of Middle English ye (/jɛː/) or Early Modern English yea (/jeː/), with breaking of the vowel and avoidance of the Great Vowel Shift (as seen in its cognate ModE yea); some kind of convoluted explanation hinging on a phonetic coincidence isn't really necessary.

-Hazarasp (talk) 00:54, 11 April 2018 (UTC)

Well, I agree pretty much completely with you regarding Modern English father being just a regular development (save, perhaps, for the vowel [in non-Hiberno English dialects]), hence why when I undid it, I kept your removal of that. However, Old English ġēa already has a regular descendant in yea, which evolved normally. The word yeah, on the other hand, has a standard pronunciation not too far from the pronunciation of Old English ġēa, and a variant pronunciation extremely close to that of Old English ġēa. Either way, it has no real rhymes (outside of non-rhotic dialects) in standard English, and seems to have pretty much been colloquial for its lifespan up to this point. Otherwise, the argument that it was a drawling pronunciation of yes would seem just as valid (for the record, I don't believe that it developed from that, but some people obviously do). Tharthan (talk) 01:20, 11 April 2018 (UTC)
I'm not saying it's a regular descendant, but the belief that its irregular evolution from OE ġēa represents some kind of survival of the pronunciation is kind of ridiculous, when it first appears in the 1870's; such a form would have to survive off the record for 600 years. It's obviously, IMHO, a dialectal form of yea that developed a centering diphthong instead of an closing diphthong. The similarity to OE ġēa is coincidental and nothing more. -Hazarasp (talk) 04:58, 11 April 2018 (UTC)
I modified the etymology to include your position as well. Tharthan (talk) 20:38, 11 April 2018 (UTC)

Pronunciation of wearEdit

Hi. You've reverted my changes on the pronunciation of the word "wear", so I will change its pronunciation into this again "wɛɹ" because it is the right pronunciation. If you check the English pronunciation appendix(in the "ɛə" section) you will see that I am right. FanNihongo (talk) 19:46, 1 May 2018 (UTC)

No, it is not the "right" pronunciation. It is one pronunciation. The actual pronunciation varies depending on region, and as General American is actually a dialect continuum, it is unfair to only include one possible form of the word's pronunciation. However, I agree that making it a blanket /wɛəɹ/ is also unfair to those who actually do pronounce it [wɛɹ]. Therefore, I have modified the pronunciation to the neutral /wɛ(ə)ɹ/. Tharthan (talk) 20:05, 1 May 2018 (UTC)


Hi ! I'm split on how this needs to be cared for. Could you please help me out ? I'm trying to determine the best way to do this.

My dilemma: After some research, it appears that the prefix non- is really derived from Middle English nōn (not any, adjective) for nouns and nōn (not, not at all, adverb) for adjectives (cf. nōn-pertinent, nōn-voluntārī, etc.), and this is the prefix we use today when creating new English words with non-. So words that are created in Modern English using non- are not using the Latin prefix at all. The Latin prefix is only found on words borrowed pre-attached to a word, like ME non-parail, nōn-certaine or in Latin phrases like non-sequitur. This is sure to ruffle some feathers.

I was planning on splitting the etymology, like we do for -er (agent suffix vs. residency suffix) and in-, but then we would have to label the Latin prefix non-productive, and the bulk of the Usage note would need to go to the Middle English derived prefix.

However, if we say that Modern English non- is a merger of the two prefixes, then we short-change certain words, like those above, which clearly show which distinct prefix is utilised and we lose pertinent info.

Do you see a better way ? Leasnam (talk) 23:59, 4 May 2019 (UTC)

I actually saw your post in the Tea Room earlier, but I didn't respond for some reason that I cannot recall now. It may have had something to do with confusion on how to address it, funnily enough, but I cannot say for sure.
I would be glad to give you my opinion on this, although this is bound to be quite tricky, if not a rank quagmire, and I am pretty sure that everyone is not going to be able to be satisfied with whatever solution is chosen.
First of all, the Latinate "prefix" could, in one way, be considered a cognate of the (forgive my imprecise wording) native Middle English term(s) derived from Old English nān. And, given the sheer closeness in meaning, it may be difficult, in at least a few cases (some relatively recently coined words, for instance) to completely rule out the possibility that this particular word or that particular word was not formed, or at least that the person forming the new word was believing that they were using the Latinate, with (at best) perhaps only a vague contribution of the native that you suggest may be the only one that is spelt that way that is a productive prefix. Even though you said that the Latinate could only really have been a factor in the case of words that were borrowed from Latin itself, I would ask you to consider (you most probably already have, especially based upon some of the things that you have just said) the high likelihood that there was plenty of confusion in this area at the time that it was a contemporary matter. If you disagree, please elaborate.
I don't think that we can label the Latin prefix non-productive (heh) with certainty, particularly in this day and age, as a lot of people are forming new terms (even if only nonce in nature) based upon that prefix (or at least, so they strongly believe), perhaps on the model of words that actually do trace that part of it from Latin. How can we know for certain? I know this sounds like a silly thought exercise, but in all seriousness, someone could form a new word seemingly containing the prefix that is modelled off of one of the words that is prefixed with the Latinate.
Regarding the second option that you gave: I know that it would be aggravating and time-consuming, but is it possible to split the "non-"s into two based upon the etymology, but instead of marking the Latin-derived as non-productive, create a category instead to contain the words that partially explains that the nature of this is somewhat uncertain for some words?
I would wonder if two categories could be an option, but that seems like it would complicate the matter even further.
Let us discuss this further, though, as we may be able to come to a good solution if we get on the same page. Tharthan (talk) 04:05, 5 May 2019 (UTC)

Reverts of woahEdit

From Wiktionary:Descriptivism -

"If the external sources do not agree with each other then Wiktionary is in a dilemma. It may not decide that one of the sources is more right tha[n] the other; that is not neutral even if one seems to have overwhelmingly more support. Instead we must take a step back. By looking at the issue from our more distant perspective we can now report about the information given by the sources about the word. It is perfectly neutral to mention that "Some people think that.." even when it would not be neutral to say "It is true that...". In this way of avoiding being definitive, it might seem that Wiktionary is losing some of its usefulness, [as] it is no longer proclaiming the rights and wrongs of usage. In fact the contrary is true: Wiktionary becomes more useful. By reporting that some people have one opinion, and that others may have another, Wiktionary allows the reader to decide for themselves which point of view is accurate."

You claim that "current consensus [on the talk page] is that it is a misspelling" -- that is absolutely not true. In fact, you are the only person who has argued for that position in the past 6 years there. That is not a consensus. That is one person (you) forcing your viewpoints upon all other users.Dylanvt (talk) 20:41, 13 May 2020 (UTC)

Merriam-Webster seems to agree with Tharthan, though.
Also, Wiktionary:Descriptivism is not a policy page. I personally don't endorse it: I find it wordy and not particularly informative. PUC – 20:52, 13 May 2020 (UTC)
Thanks for your input. This is not radical descriptivism, though. It is very reasonable descriptivism. I and many people I know rarely or never spell the word as 'whoa', and have always spelled it 'woah'. The data show that 'woah' is more frequent than 'whoa' (according to Google Trends, it has been since 2017). Also, the entry at 'whoah' is listed as an alternative spelling, which makes absolutely no sense; it is (again, according to Google Trends) 16 times less frequent than 'woah', which has been inexplicably singled out as a misspelling. Likewise, why is it that words like hah, hurra, huzza, mwa, ta-tah, aoogah, and yowza are all considered alternative spellings, while 'woah' is uniquely deemed to be a misspelling?
I am not proposing to get rid of misspellings entirely, and am only talking about this specific instance. And in this instance, there is absolutely no justification to call this word a misspelling, when it is the single most common spelling, and there is no consensus here or elsewhere. Doing otherwise would be forcing our (more precisely, Tharthan's) viewpoint upon the whole community.
Regarding Merriam Webster; OED has five citations with 'woah' dating back to 1790. (Meanwhile, it has zero citations with 'whoah', which we do consider an alternative spelling here on Wiktionary. Why is that?) Also, Merriam Webster doesn't have any of ahooga, ahoogah, aoogah, arooga, aroogah, awooga, or awoogah, but we have them all, and none of them are called misspellings. Dylanvt (talk) 21:36, 13 May 2020 (UTC)
To be honest with you, Dylanvt, I actually don't care much about this particular matter. Whether "woah" is marked here as an alternative spelling with "sometimes proscribed" as a qualifier, or marked as a misspelling, means little to me.
However, I find that using Twitter hashtag counts and Google Trends to attempt to discredit the notion that it is a misspelling quite weak. And when it comes to the latter, people misspell things on Twitter all of the time.
With that said, I have an alternative to the current state of the page to propose:
(with "Sandbox" in the page saying "woah", of course).
What say you? Tharthan (talk) 23:12, 13 May 2020 (UTC)
That’s unobjectionable. Dylanvt (talk) 23:26, 13 May 2020 (UTC)
I'll alter woah then to look as proposed. Tharthan (talk) 23:45, 13 May 2020 (UTC)