Wiktionary:Tea room

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Tea house party in Japan (not tea ceremony)-J. M. W. Silver.jpg

A place to ask for help on finding quotations, etymologies, or other information about particular words. The Tea room is named to accompany the Beer parlour.

For questions about the general Wiktionary policies, use the Beer parlour; for technical questions, use the Grease pit. For questions about specific content, you're in the right place.

Tea room archives edit

Please do not edit section titles as this breaks links on talk pages and in other discussion fora.

Oldest tagged RFTs

September 2021


Sense 2 (film) might not pass CFI, at least in lower case. It seems to be a trademark that uses capital D and perhaps S. Equinox 17:48, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Use of en-dash versus hyphen in entry titlesEdit

We have a long-standing habit of reducing the en dash to a hyphen - in entry titles, so (for example) we have Bose-Einstein statistics whereas Wikipedia has Bose–Einstein statistics. In such simple cases, some authorities favour a hyphen anyhow. But there are other cases where the en dash actually resolves ambiguity, e.g. the principal–agent problem involves a principal and an agent, not a principal agent; and a theory of Mr Jones and Ms Hughes-Richards might be called the "Jones–Hughes-Richards theory", clearly two people and not three. Should we (or do we) have policy on this en dash? Equinox 18:55, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Yes, we should ignore all of that and use hyphens everywhere. DTLHS (talk) 18:59, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Why? Equinox 19:03, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Because entry titles should be used for convenience rather than for slavish adherence to printed material. This could be represented in the headword line. DTLHS (talk) 19:10, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]
My 2p / 2c (I am surprised those are both redlinks) is that I'd prefer to have entries at the readily-typeable titles with redirects from (and, if necessary, head= to display) the dashes, somewhat like with how we use straight quotes in entry titles, not curly quotes. To some extent this heads off the interminable debates that happen on Wikipedia over whether something is a compound name that should use a hyphen or a double-barrelled name that should use a dash (or a compound name where one element uses a dash but is joined to the other element by a hyphen)... - -sche (discuss) 19:59, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Try  --Lambiam 13:56, 2 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Or tuppence or tuppence worth, but strangely not at twopence, and I think I have heard people recently say "my two pee's worth" rather than pronouncing it "twopence/tuppence"; I don't recall ever hearing "my two dee's worth" in my youth -- I think the added need to differentiate p from d in the late '60s has brought a slight permanent change of language. Normally, I'd go and add a few redirects, but no time now unfortunately. --Enginear 20:38, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]

An additional comment: most mainstream and print dictionaries do make the distinction at headword level. I should have said "headword" when I said "entry title". The suggestion of using the head template parameter is reasonable. Equinox 22:26, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Should we treat 2c/2¢ in the same way? If even an editor can't find it (and I wouldn't have either) some redirection seems appropriate. $ & £ are well-known, but I had forgotten ¢ used a modified character too. --Enginear 20:53, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]


I just corrected the second definition, which had been "A person of three-quarters Aboriginal descent and one quarter Caucasian descent; a person of one quarter Aboriginal descent." The part before the semicolon, if real, is a different sense mutually exclusive with the part after the semicolon; AFAICT, only the "one-quarter Aboriginal" sense is real. However, this raises a question: both sense 1 (about partial African descent) and sense 2 (about Aborigines) seem to be examples of one underlying sense, "A person of three-quarters white and one quarter Black descent", since Aborigines are or were considered Black. So should the senses we merged? (If not, the adjective section needs a second definition mirroring the noun.) - -sche (discuss) 20:47, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]

OED has: "A person who is by descent three-quarters white and one-quarter black; a person with one black grandparent. Formerly also: a person with one black great-grandparent (obsolete rare)." Equinox 21:19, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]

bosom: merge two senses?Edit

These seem to overlap somewhat:

  • The protected interior or inner part of something; the area enclosed as by an embrace.
  • Any thing or place resembling the breast; a supporting surface; an inner recess; the interior.

Equinox 22:38, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]

  • The first part of the second line is sort of like an umbrella description of the rest, with the differences between the senses arising from different concepts of what the breast is: the metaphorical innermost part closest to the heart into which things are drawn by an embrace vs. the physical object consisting of the front of the upper torso. The first concept is represented by the first line and the third and fourth parts of the second line, which are redundant to it. The other concept is represent by the second part of the second line.
If we rearrange the parts, it becomes clearer:
  • Any thing or place resembling the breast:
  • The protected interior or inner part of something; an inner recess; the interior.
  • A supporting surface
Chuck Entz (talk) 03:37, 2 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't see why a "supporting surface" particularly resembles the breast. But this might work. Equinox 22:27, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]
That part of the definition immediately reminds me of Cornershop’s line: “Everybody needs a bosom for a pillow”. (though I think this refers to an actual breast, not something resembling one of them. It’s hard to be sure as the lyrics are a bit strange and disconnected to each other). Overlordnat1 (talk) 10:11, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]

lippen verb sense 2Edit

"To trust; to expect; to depend or rely (on)". This seems to be at least three different things! Split sense? Equinox 23:56, 1 September 2021 (UTC)[]


On the subject of parts of speech not matching definitions (discussed last month with the matter), texas is defined as a Norwegian noun meaning "crazy, wild". It seems like either the POS should be changed to "adjective" or the definition should be changed to match it being a noun ("craziness, madness"). - -sche (discuss) 09:33, 2 September 2021 (UTC)[]

The Norwegian Wiktionary has this as a singular noun, glossed as meaning “lawless states/conditions”. I see it occurring as the first compound of Texas-tilstander, usually capitalized, so comparable with the attributive use of the proper noun Texas in English, but with the metaphorical semantics of Wild West.  --Lambiam 13:44, 2 September 2021 (UTC)[]


In the list of descendants of Latin sturnus, Arabic and Hebrew are united under the caption “Mozarabic”. Does this make sense? Are these perhaps meant to represent the same Mozarabic term in different scripts? Is there evidence for this/these descendant(s)?  --Lambiam 20:41, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Yes, it makes perfect sense: Mozarabic in two different scripts. Now, whether it's attested is an entirely different question; I don't know the relevant sources. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 21:36, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I see. These labels are misleading; elsewhere the labels “Arabic script” and “Hebrew script” are used (e.g. at canis § Descendants).  --Lambiam 11:08, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Added by IP instead of the usual suspect Romandalusí (talkcontribs). Looks like a meme. Who would start a word, in any language at that time, with a hamza on space (ء(ʾ)) followed by an alif? And who would have written the o in the syllable tor as ה‎? Fay Freak (talk) 23:29, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Is there a mechanism for asking for verification? My searches only lead to our entry.  --Lambiam 11:08, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
@Lambiam: This particular word, as a bird-name, may be in the published poetry. Maybe in S.M. Stern’s Chansons mozarabes which uses to be quoted and is said to contain on its 63 pages all known texts of the genre known in his time. Many a thing found under the headword aljamía may be Mozarabic, however the Spanish article on its Mozarabic part is devoid of sources. It does not look like many have actually cared to read this literature in the internet age, it is only talked about much to show off to university students and for completion, actually avoiding the Arabic and Hebrew script. These Les chansons mozarabes are not held by libraries in NRW except in Bonn and I could only let it be sent to me from the UK for 40 € upwards but this is wet. You seem to be in a good position to get this though, to teach all them Romanists. Fay Freak (talk) 13:50, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Anyway, I would suggest making the script labels display as "Arabic script" and "Hebrew script" to avoid confusion with the language names. We also have this issue with "Latin" (script) Serbo-Croatian. - -sche (discuss) 22:01, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  • I have removed it, because I can't find any evidence for the spellings used. As FF said, they raise a great deal of suspicion, and after doing a bit of reading, I see no support for orthography this bizarre ever having been used. It also strains credulity that such an obscure word is attested in two scripts. It is much more parsimonious to conclude that the anon made this up, at least in the spellings given on the page. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 22:36, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  • My guess is that they found it as a transliterated mention somewhere and "backliterated" it. Chuck Entz (talk) 00:53, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Wiktionary:Language flagsEdit

(Following up a discussion on Discord) This page is a bit silly to say the least. The "Represents" column is particularly terrible. Translingual "represents Earth" sounds like a joke. And apparently English is a slashed diagonal UK/US flag, which "represents" "the United States and the United Kingdom" (because we hate Australia, Jamaica, and expats). The whole thing is appalling. Equinox 23:11, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]

The constructive comment (since some people find this visually useful): Microsoft iconifies languages by putting the ISO code in white on blue, so you might see "en" or "en-US". But the purpose of icons is to visually distinguish things so this would not be very helpful. I do think we could perhaps use colours in some way, instead of the political irrelevance of flags. (But it does raise issues around colour-blindness.) Equinox 23:20, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]
On your comment about colours: There is a custom among some languages' communities to distinguish a language group or family by a colour (in inflection tables) which I personally like very much and would support being made more official. To give an example: All Finnic languages use purple inflection tables. Or maybe I've just been seeing patterns that aren't there; It's still a good idea IMHO. Thadh (talk) 00:48, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Trying to attach flags to languages is stupidly political and naive. Thank goodness this isn't on by default.
Cantonese, post-1997 Hong Kong SAR (what about literal Canton, China, not to mention those who don't like the PRC); Mandarin: PRC (not ROC?); Min Nan: ROC (not PRC?);
Vietnamese: (former North) Vietnam (disregarding the incredible size of the diaspora that still identifies with the South Vietnamese flag); Korea: South Korea; Okinawan: Japan (instead of Okinawa, former Kingdom of Ryukyu), Spanish: Spain and Mexico (*gesturing wildly at w:Hispanophone#Countries*) … —Suzukaze-c (talk) 23:45, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[]
On one hand, meh, I don't mind it as an opt-in gadget, it seems like a tolerable visual shorthand. OTOH, who is going to be unaware of what an obscure language is but recognize its obscure flag? It seems like the flags would mostly be useful/recognizable in . . . cases where the person probably also recognizes the language name! I would suggest : leave the gadget available as an opt-in gadget for people who want it, but move it to someone's userspace (even just some "sandbox account" like Wikipedia uses to create "Do Not Archive Until" signatures) so it's not a Wiktionary-official thing. Btw, this edit was undone over on Wikipedia (as being mistaken about the flag being fake) if we also want to undo it here. - -sche (discuss) 21:58, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Ventanuco: not especifically pejorativeEdit

"Ventanuco" is not especially pejorative. Most of the times it just means "small window", often with a deep sill.-- 19:01, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Interesting, the creator initially defined it as a mere diminutive before changing it. - -sche (discuss) 21:46, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Were I a Spanish window, I wouldn't feel offended by this term. I've reworded it MooreDoor (talk) 10:13, 8 September 2021 (UTC)[]
What an appropriate username for a comment about a small window, perhaps a feature of Moorish architecture too! --Enginear 21:18, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Defined as "to "appreciate ball (games) in a civilised manner" as uttered by commentators (with "balls" being intentionally misconstrued as "breasts")". So, is the actual semantic value "to appreciate breasts", or what? I feel like the definition could be clearer or benefit from usage notes explaining how/when it's used. - -sche (discuss) 21:45, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Also, is this phrase uttered as such by commentators, or does it refer to the “civilized” terminology used by commentators to refer to ball games? There seems to be a joke hiding in the “uncivilized” use of 觀球 instead of 球類, and I suspect this entry is then a SOP of 文明 +‎ 觀球. If by itself has a slang meaning “(woman’s) breast”, it should be listed. Otherwise, the reference to “breasts” is a mystery .  --Lambiam 09:19, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I'd be sending it to RFD for 1) SoP and 2) lack of durable citation. --Frigoris (talk) 09:41, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
It's a mistake to send it to RFD in my opinion. It's not SoP, how would someone understand that the second meaning has been developed without this entry? Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 09:45, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
It's not just SoP, but also likely a poor-quality entry bordering on gibberish. The RFD is a request based on its poor quality. If the problems can be addressed in the RFD process, the request will fail and we'll end up with a better entry. --Frigoris (talk) 09:48, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]

of all placesEdit


  1. (idiomatic, often used as a sentence adverb) Surprisingly.

I had to undo an IP's attempt to add a translation table with the gloss "in a way that causes surprise because it is unexpected, or unusual". The problem is that the definition misses the nuance that a place is always mentioned. I can't imagine someone saying "Yesterday I ran into Betty, of all places". I'm not sure exactly how to phrase it, but we need to change this, somehow. Chuck Entz (talk) 01:30, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]

What about
  1. (idiomatic, often used as a sentence adverb, referring to a particular location) Surprisingly.
?  --Lambiam 09:30, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Compare of all people, of all things. PUC – 09:39, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
[] or "of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world she walks into mine." IMO, main entries should be at of all the and/or of all, with redirects from all of the longer collocations. DCDuring (talk) 18:04, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
That seems reasonable, but requires the addition of an entirely new sense for of all, for which I can’t think of an acceptable PoS assignment.  --Lambiam 10:34, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Me neither. "Phrase", even though it isn't a constituent and therefore not a phrase, s.s.. DCDuring (talk) 13:32, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The existing sense of of all that is exemplified by "the comeback of all comebacks" is not a constituent either, IMO. I fail to see how this is an "adverb" as claimed. I see "all comebacks" as a phrase, this being the object of preposition "of". Mihia (talk) 21:12, 9 September 2021 (UTC)[]


I am new around here so I will try to walk on egg shells. I am assuming a reference to a historical written text or document is required to definitely say something is an etymological root.

For instance it would be easy to logically assume that the Galli were related to or influential in the following cultures or geographic regions.

Gallus Gaels Gauls Gaelic Gaeil Galacia (Iberian Peninsula) Galilee (Holy Land) Galatia (Roman) Galatia in Spain Galatia in Turkey

But even more logical to assume that Cybele is the root of or at a minimum in the trail of the etymological roots of Celibate and Celibacy.

So multipart question, first are logical connections a good or bad place to begin an investigation into etymology, and number 2 are there logical connections that cannot be made because no supporting historical documentation exists, and number 3 in what way do you assemble supporting documentation if necessary.

Thank you, I've been through so many forums over the years and reactions can run the whole spectrum. I humbly request your forgiveness if I have done anything in error, or needed to read something that I did not, or offended any person, entity, or awareness through my ignorance.—⁠This unsigned comment was added by Gnochragalli (talkcontribs) at 21:48 5 September 2021 (UTC).

While it's sometimes okay to add obvious etymologies if one knows what one is doing, it's obvious that you don't. While it's true that many of the names in your list are derived from the names of Celtic peoples who lived in or invaded various territories during the time of the ancient Greek and Roman civilizations, Galilee is strictly of Hebrew origin and has nothing to do with the name of anything. As for Cybele, "y"s and "i"s are of generally of very different origin in Latin, and there's really no plausible connection between Latin words for unmarried people and a foreign goddess. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:52, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Rather, ⟨y⟩s and ⟨ae⟩s – the adjective comes from Latin caelibātus[1] – are of generally very different origin. Note also the metathesis ⟨b⟩↔⟨l⟩. Connections that seem plausible (rather than “logical”) generally deserve investigation. To deserve more than a mention in the style of “perhaps related to ...”, more evidence than plausibility is desirable. This one does not appear plausible. Note that the historical sound changes follow certain patterns, which etymologists know; see the Wikipedia category Sound laws. Changes that fall outside these patterns are highly suspect.  --Lambiam 13:10, 6 September 2021 (UTC)[]


I don't think this entry does a very good job of covering the military-related sense(s), like "the commandos were killed while on a mission to assassinate the rebel leader" or "the airman was shot down during a resupply mission". Perhaps the issue is that sense 1 is very broad. Other dictionaries seem to consistently have specific senses or subsenses for the military-related sense. - -sche (discuss) 23:16, 5 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Don't forget space missions. Where does an unmanned mission to Mars fit in "an assignment set by an employer, or by oneself"? We need to go back to the etymology: Latin missiō refers to sending; you don't send someone on "a series of tasks", but people and various types of vessels/crafts are sent on missions all the time. Chuck Entz (talk) 00:08, 6 September 2021 (UTC)[]


(Following up on this 2020 discussion about Wu-ch'ia) In the case of this Central Asian geographical term, I have found its use in six situations shown at Citations:Koxtag. However, only one of those situations is a traditional sentence from a traditional durably archived source. I don't want to overextend my understanding of how far Wiktionary can go, so I'd like to get any feedback on whether this word has been attested to Wiktionary standards or not. I believe that it has, and I will proceed on that assumption unless you have any comments or qualifiers for me. This is not a question for the RFV board because that board "is for requests for attestation of a term or a sense," and I'm not requesting attestations (although they are welcome): I am requesting an assessment of the existing attestation situation. If only there were a board on this website to request verification of the validity of given citations (not verification of the word, but of the citations). Please ping me. --Geographyinitiative (talk) 19:29, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[]

The first two (entries in atlases) looks like mentions to me. The WT:CFI can be read as excluding them as attestations for WT:WDL because they may not satisfy the "conveying meaning" criterion. --Frigoris (talk) 17:06, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]


Hey guys, hopefully there's an architect around... What's the term for this thing, called a cajillo in Spanish? It might be a ceiling island or a dropped ceiling box, both of which look kinda similar to me. Any ideas? MooreDoor (talk) 13:53, 8 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Plain old "recessed ceiling"? Ultimateria (talk) 22:23, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Turkish kalınEdit

An old dictionary translates the phonetic sense of Turkish kalın as velar. Wiktionary translates as back. Is one of these more correct? I have seen kalın contrasted with ince (translated here as front). Vox Sciurorum (talk) 19:43, 9 September 2021 (UTC)[]

In Turkish phonology the letter has two realizations: a “light” [l] and a velarized or “dark” [ɫ], sometimes referred to as a “thick” ℓ, kalın in Turkish. It is heard in adjacency to back vowels, the word kalın itself offering an example: [kɑˈɫɯn]. I suppose that the translation “velar” refers specifically to this thick . The phonological term of art for “velar” in Turkish is artdamaksıl.  --Lambiam 14:51, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I read it in the context of consonants ({{R:tr:OTK}} p. 19). Should we have a second sense applicable to consonants? Vox Sciurorum (talk) 22:36, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Tea roomEdit

I'm putting this here in case Wiktionary_talk:Tea_room has little traffic. At the top of Wiktionary:Tea room, it says "For questions about the technical operation of Wiktionary use the Beer parlour". I thought the place for questions about "technical operation" was the Grease Pit? Mihia (talk) 20:09, 9 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Good point, I've revised the wording. Please revise further if necessary. - -sche (discuss) 16:59, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks (I can't actually edit that page myself). Mihia (talk) 17:37, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]


On fi-wiktionary, a user made the following claims about the English word luft (fi:luft):

  1. As a noun, it means 'air', also 'impression', 'essence',
  2. There is an idiom "full of hot luft" meaning 'nonsense, trash', as well as an idiom "put on luft" meaning 'to pretend to be something; to act like a snob'.
  3. As a verb, it means something like 'to broadcast' as well as 'bleed (to remove air from hydraulic system)' as well as 'to air, ventilate, fan'.

After that, I edited the page so that it says the same things as the enwikt page (on its English section) but the user reverted my edit saying "the word 'luft' is commonly used in English instead of 'air'; in some places luft is even more common than air"

Are any of these claims true (except for that it sometimes can mean 'air')? How complete is the enwikt definition of luft? Based on googling, clearly no such idioms as full of hot luft or put on luft exist. Mölli-Möllerö (talk) 12:43, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]

I might as well add that the user earlier today also claimed that the English word "air pressure" is spelled together as airpressure, which also does not seem to be true according to what I found on Google. Mölli-Möllerö (talk) 12:46, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't believe the definition. Send it to RFV. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 15:04, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Which definition, on fiwikt or on enwikt? The chess-related definition seems correct ([2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]). Mölli-Möllerö (talk) 15:46, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I've RfVed the "air" def. DCDuring (talk) 17:13, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]
As a US native English speaker who has never seen or heard luft used in English in 60+ years, I'm confident that person is wrong. There may be some limited use as a loanword or code-switching in dialects influenced by German or Yiddish, but that's probably it. Chuck Entz (talk) 18:44, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I would add that Google currently returns no results for "full of hot luft" or "put on luft" Chuck Entz (talk) 18:50, 10 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Unlike for “full of hot luſt”.  --Lambiam 14:16, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Based partly on this, I've edited the Finnish entry so that it says 'sky, atmosphere, upper air' in the Scots section and '(chess) flight squares given for a king to avoid a backrank mate' in the English section. I will be following the request for verification discussion and edit the English section of the Finnish entry accordingly if needed. Mölli-Möllerö (talk) 10:06, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]


Why is the phonemic transcription /komˈmiɡo/ instead of /konˈmiɡo/ ? Dngweh2s (talk) 01:52, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Because that is how the word is pronounced. The /n/ is changed to /m/ by anticipatory assimilation to the labial consonant that follows it. Compare the pronunciations of, for example, conminado, conmoción, conmover and conmutar. The same process can be seen at work in Spanish inbox, pronounced /ˈimboks/.  --Lambiam 14:07, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The point that they may be alluding to is: why would that not count as /n/ phonemically, with assimilation represented at the allophonic level instead?
One answer would be that the sound in question never surfaces, in that word, as anything other than a bilabial, so it might as well be represented by /m/ on the phonemic transcription.
On the other hand, Spanish neutralizes the /n/ ~ /m/ opposition before consonants. Since it is the following consonant that determines the realization of the proceding nasal, one could argue for a phonemic /N/ in that position (read as just 'nasal consonant') and a phonetic [m], [n], or [ŋ] depending on what follows.
A morphophonemic transcription of the prefix con-, however, would have to be ⫽kon⫽, in light of how the last element is realized as alveolar nasal when followed by a vowel (as in conocer) and hence not subject to point-of-articulation assimilation. I do not think that it would be terribly unreasonable to carry that into the phonemic transcription and mark conmigo as beginning with /kon/.
All of this though is rather abstract and unnecessary for practical purposes. The Nicodene (talk) 17:55, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]


Derived terms in English are split between noun and adjective. Some NPs with silver as the head are list under the adjective heading, which is clearly wrong. But, more importantly, how is one supposed to distinguish between the use of a noun and of an adjective in attributive use in what are supposed to be inclusion-worthy terms?

A simple solution would be to combine derived terms appearing under different PoS headers and place the result near the bottom of the language/etymology section where the original derived terms sections appeared. The same would probably make sense for related terms.

If I am correct about this, it seems likely to be a problem for derived and related terms in many similar English entries. DCDuring (talk) 14:15, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]

@DCDuring: It shouldn't matter what part of speech a term in those sections is, but the part of speech of the sense they're derived from or related to. A silver dollar is made from silver (the noun), regardless of its actual color. A silver fir is silver (the adjective), regardless of what material it's made of. Chuck Entz (talk) 16:06, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree with your first sentence. The question of whether "silver" used attributively to mean "made of/from silver" is a noun or adjective in any particular case is potentially tricky IMO, and this goes for many similar "substance" modifiers, some of which have come up before (https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Talk:brick#RFD_discussion:_August%E2%80%93November_2018 is one that I remember; that survived as adj. [sorry, in fact it didn't survive but was deleted here]). All dictionaries that I checked list a "made of/from silver" adjectival sense. Some of the "derived terms" are IMO clearly in the wrong place: for example "silver fluoride" and "antimonial silver" are clearly IMO noun uses not adjective uses as presently implied. On a separate point, according to Wiktionary:Entry_layout#Derived_terms, "derived terms" are "morphological derivatives". This is widely not adhered to within Wiktionary; indeed, in general, there is no consistent approach whatsoever to the contents of sections such as "derived terms" and "related terms". Mihia (talk) 17:59, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Looking at the derived terms in this entry, we do not seem to have the ability to maintain the distinction well.
Taking every tenth item from the noun section: silver alert (A), silver ash(A), silver bass (A), silver book(?), silver city (N), silverfish (A), silver grass (A), silver leaf (N), silver medalist (N), silver point (?), silver screen (A), silver thatch (A), silver wormwood (A), we find that 8/13 are adjectives misplaced (by my lights) as nouns, 2/13 with PoS I can't determine, and 3/13 correctly placed.
Taking every tenth item from the adjective section: every cloud has a silver lining (N?), red silver (N), silver bar (N?), silverbill (A), silver certificate (N), Silver Creek (N), silvereye (A), silver-fork (?), silver-grey (A?), silver-hilted (N), silverite (N), silver-leaved (A+N?), silver medalist (N), silver paper (A?), silver-pointed (?), silver salmon (A), silversmith (N), Silver Star (N), silver table (N?), silver-tongued (N), silver wedding (N), silver wreck (N?), we find 5/22 that seem correctly derived from adjective, 2/22 with PoS I can't determine, 14/22 apparently incorrectly assigned to adjective derivaton, and one that might belong under both adjective and noun.
Considering both, I find 23/35 misclassified, 4/35 I can't determine, 1 that perhaps should be both, and 8/35 correctly assigned. That's only about 23% correct. Note also how many red-linked items there are, some of which are not readily assigned to a PoS if they indeed are not SoP.
In addition Long John Silver should probably appear in the missing proper noun section.
Can we find someone to sort it out according to what you suggest? Frankly I doubt that we will and I also doubt that there are not ambiguities and duplicates, eg silver perch. Further, I expect that items will continue to be added without regard to the appropriate PoS section. DCDuring (talk) 18:04, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]
In the absence of any easy to apply criteria, I would simply move everything to the noun. DTLHS (talk) 01:01, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't think that's a good idea, since some (e.g. the colour ones, such as "sliver fir") are surely adjectival? If we are to lump them all together then I think it should be under an "all PoS" heading as we have done in certain other articles, e.g. behind. By the way, at least one that I noticed, silverer, should go under the verb, if we want to keep them separate. Mihia (talk) 08:56, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]


Please add it. I'm disappointed that this is on Wikipedia, but not on Wiktionary. 23:17, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]

  Done It seems there was previously an entry but it was deleted as a protologism; however, a glance at Google Books suggests to me that this could pass. Equinox 23:22, 11 September 2021 (UTC)[]


The term cred (credibility) is labeled "urban", any idea what this is this meant to mean and if it is accurate? The label was present in the first revision from 2005 so I am somewhat suspicious of it. —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 01:20, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]

It must mean street slang, as in street cred. Equinox 01:21, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Is it anything other than informal now? DCDuring (talk) 02:06, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Probably? I am not so skilled in differentiating between slang and informal terms. All I'm thinking is that I definitely hear people it from people who I wouldn't consider inner-city, poor, or speakers of AAVE (what I understand "urban" to mean here). —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 15:32, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The Grey Lady uses street cred unapologetically, so this term escaped its urban confines. But in her pages I also find uses like Brooklyn cred, cool-girl cred, coral reef cred, design cred, Green cred, hip-hop cred, indie-film cred, New York City cred, publishing cred, rock cred, style cred, theater cred, underground horror-movie cred, mostly but not only in headlines, and unqualified uses (“Schlesinger brings some serious cred to this chow-down.”[8]; “Contrarian remains true to his cred.”[9]; “Nothing is more lethal to cred than a sellout.”[10]). If this be slang, it has society cred.  --Lambiam 22:22, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I think this started out as part of street cred, and followed a familiar progression from inner-city slang to youth culture to mainstream, "edgy" cleverness to cliché. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:43, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]

化 in Chinese inorganic nomenclatureEdit

@Justinrleung, Suzukaze-c, Frigoris, 沈澄心 In my opinion, 二氧化碳 (èryǎnghuàtàn) should not be segmented as 二+氧化+碳 because the name does not suggest oxidation. According to 中国化学会无机化学命名原则 (1980), 化 in inorganic nomenclature "表示简单和化合。如氯原子(Cl)与钠原子(Na)化合而成的NaCl就叫氯化钠,又如氢氧基(HO—)与钾原子(K)化合而成的KOH就叫氢氧化钾。", and is listed alongside 合, 代 and 聚 under the section 1.2 化学介词. If 硫代硫酸 isn't 硫代+硫酸 and 五水合硫酸銅 isn't 五+水合+硫酸銅, then 二氧化碳 isn't 二+氧化+碳.

In fact, 二氧化碳 is more like 二氧+化+碳. Analysing 五氧化二磷 as 五+氧化+二磷 would break the symmetry of the name as it should be 五氧+化+二磷. Any thoughts? RcAlex36 (talk) 04:16, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]

@RcAlex36: I agree. The (huà) is simply an infix in word formation. --Frigoris (talk) 08:52, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
@RcAlex36: Agree. We would need to change the |type= in {{zh-forms}} in all the entries with 化 and remove derived terms from 氧化 (yǎnghuà), 氯化 (lǜhuà), etc. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 15:41, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

sprake van zijnEdit

@Thadh, Rua, Mnemosientje, Morgengave, Alexis Jazz, Appolodorus1, DrJos A messy entry, but more fundamentally I'd say the page name is wrong. Van always introduces an argument, with one exception. So I think a good solution would be to move it to sprake zijn van. Then a separate entry can be created for geen sprake van; this is unusual in having neither an inflected verb nor an argument. ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 15:44, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Isn’t the interjection Geen sprake van elliptic for the sentence Daar kan geen sprake van zijn, which has both a finite verb and an object of van?  --Lambiam 21:59, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I think moving the page is a good idea. Thadh (talk) 16:09, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
See my edit and its summary; The entry doesn't look like quite the mess it was before... Thadh (talk) 16:24, 12 September 2021 (UTC) []
Lingo Bingo Dingo, and what about "sprake zijn over", like "Minstens is er geen sprake over in de processen-verbaal", is that an alternative form? And "Dit is alles, wat van de overzeesche bezittingen gezegd wordt; geen woord over het muntwezen"? Alexis Jazz (talk) 17:50, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I think the semantics is different. In the latter two cases, some issue is not addressed, possibly because it was unimportant or unknown. In sprake van / geen sprake van, some fact is / is not stated because it is known or assumed to be true / false.  --Lambiam 21:59, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]


This was created in 2010 by an IP with poorly-formatted, TMI personal content. It was fixed up shortly afterward by @Nbarth with a quite different definition, one that entirely missed the sexual-orientation overtones provided by the word "queer" and strongly implied in the original version of the entry. Now someone is asking about it on the talk page. Can someone who knows more about LGBTQ usage than I do fix it for real this time? Chuck Entz (talk) 21:35, 12 September 2021 (UTC)[]

@Chuck Entz: I've overhauled the entry. I do find a lot of positive or affectionate ribbing usage as discussed on the talk page. I'm not sure if such use is exclusive though. The Rice University Neologisms Database seems to claim another sense is out there (see [11]), but I'm doubtful. —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 16:52, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]


A Simpsons coinage that appears attestable from Google Books. It says the entry failed RFV but I cannot find the discussion; where is it? Equinox 13:43, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]

@Equinox: I searched “crisitunity” in the Wiktionary namespace and found a link to the discussion at Wiktionary:Previously deleted entries/C. J3133 (talk) 14:42, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  Done Recreated with citations. Equinox 12:52, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Lisa Simpson says Did you know that the Chinese use the same word for "crisis" as they do for "opportunity". I assume she's correct, so what Chinese word would that be??? Roger the Rodger (talk) 15:34, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
@Roger the Rodger: See Wikipedia:Chinese word for "crisis". J3133 (talk) 15:42, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
As Master Qiūjí'ěr teaches, Never let a good opportunity go to waste.  --Lambiam 21:13, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Mozarabic entriesEdit

(Pinging @Ser be etre shi and @Koszmonaut as users potentially interested in the topic.)

In light of the above discussion on Mozarabic, perhaps it is time to bring up the matter of the numerous uncited Mozarabic words (all provided, without exception, in both Hebrew and Arabic scripts) added by the user Romandalusí under the 'descendants' section of various Latin words (examples: 1 2 3). It is suspicious that a Google search for the forms in question turns up not a single scholarly source discussing Mozarabic; for the last word, there are in fact zero results on the Internet except for the Wiktionary entry itself- and that is far from an exceptional case.

Does anyone have the time and means to dig through the Mozarabic words and verify or reject them individually, or should there perhaps be a blanket removal of uncited ones added by the person in question? The Nicodene (talk) 18:16, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Google is not the omniscient, this particular field is surely insufficiently scanned, so it does not arouse my suspicion at all; in fact my experience—and the editor’s impression is most relevant for any digital dictionary project of such scale of course—is that it is not quite difficult to afford Arabic or Persian terms or variants not findable via web searches though still existing without reasonable doubt; surely even easier it must be for Romanian by reason that there is awe-inspiring coverage of variants on DEXonline without that they can be tracked down though generally they be from somewhere and not fictitious. No, nobody has the time or means or disposition towards this language.
Because it is neither without suspicion when somebody without time or means or clue removes things, it is best to ignore them. The likelihood that errors in this field damage Wiktionary’s reputation is zero since nobody has a clue and in the unlikely case that somebody is a scholar in it and devotes his time to expose Wiktionary’s Mozarabic ghost words it is understood that nobody has a clue here even, though in other languages editors very much have, so by all likelihoods in the world it could not be avoided. Fay Freak (talk) 01:19, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
As it turns out, an excellent work titled Romance kharjas in Andalusian Arabic Muwaššaḥ poetry: A palaeographical analysis is available on LibGen. It includes, in full, all of the Kharjas written in Arabic script that Dr. Allen Jones judges to contain Romance vocabulary, along with a useful index of such words on pages 302–304.
Since user Romandalusí provided a version in Arabic script of every single word that he added, the above source provides the means to detect any words that were made up.
If nobody has objections, the long clean-up process can begin. The Nicodene (talk) 20:59, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Great. That title, seemingly considered in an 2021 synopsis of jarchas romances (now there by Anne Cenname’s 25 € work we can know what the literature on Mozarabic is ❗ – apparently not only obscure but also limited) still standard, is even better than Les chansons mozarabes and the other books of Emilio García Gómez, which, as I read in Alan Jones, contained many blunders and ballparks and are still employed by Romanists because them man are too indolent for foreign scripts, however Jones has apparently made some separate editions still so his Romance kharjas in Andalusian Arabic Muwaššaḥ poetry is a satisfying but not sufficient corpus?!
Should we have “romanization” entries for Mozarabic like we have for Gothic or Sumerian? Meseems no because there is to great a possible variation. Fay Freak (talk) 22:20, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

stop the pressesEdit

This is occasionally used as a regular verb would be (but rarely); you can see the verb forms listed ("stopped the press", "stopping the press", etc.). However how would we define that verb form? I always thought "stopping the press" was something like "to delay, in favor of another option"; this has only been my presupposition as far as I've heard the term, however, and I actually have no idea how to define it. PseudoSkull (talk) 18:58, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Can we find examples where it doesn’t actually mean printing presses? This is also a problem with the translations, that some only exist literally (apart from translations from English which have not caught on outside those translations). Fay Freak (talk) 01:29, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I have heard it used sarcastically in situations where someone has announced something as if it were either news and either important or non-obvious when the speaker did not think so. I have thought it to be allusion to US movies (c. 1930-50) which involved, say, fictional crime reported in newspapers. DCDuring (talk) 16:09, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
As a figurative interjection, it is (I think) the first part of an originally longer phrase, each of whose parts is often used stand-alone: Stop the presses – this just in.[12] The sense as an exclamation is just as described in the ngd: “Hey guys, here is some news that will interest you.” To see how we should define it as a regular verb, we need to see how it is used.
It should be changed to an interjection only. The verb sense is a sum of parts. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 22:32, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Etymology of Persian عشق (ešğ)Edit

According to Wiktionary, it's an Arabic loanword. According to Mina Parsaei on Quora, it's «of Indo-European Iranic origin, derived from either Ishkâ (ایشکا, with ish meaning wanting or wishing in Avestan) or Ashâk (اشاک, with ashâ meaning truth, correctness, love or affection in Pahlavi)». Who is right? Could it be that those Iranian words were morphed into ešğ under influence of Arabic? MGorrone (talk) 20:34, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Here's a tip: most answers on Quora are wrong. Anyone who knows the slightest bit of Persian and isn't blinded by nationalism can tell that our etymology is correct. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 21:52, 13 September 2021 (UTC)[]

go-ed ?Edit

I keep hearing young British people online saying "(something) is /ˈɡəʊ.ɛd/" - I've heard it among Northerners and Southern speakers alike. Apparently it is used to mean "good, excellent, passable, adequate" - but it's not necessarily how they pronounce the word 'good' which they pronounce normally, so it is certainly distinct from 'good'. Does anyone have a clue what it is they're saying ? Leasnam (talk) 01:23, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Never encountered this. And I have heard and read way too much British people only chatting. Not used in MLE? What kind/strata of “young”? Fay Freak (talk) 01:36, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Under 25, white. If you ever watch reactions, I've heard it by both Beesley and LavLuka. I can recall one specific instance where Beesley says McDonald's fries are /ˈɡəʊ.ɛd/ - I even commented for the meaning, but I never saw a reply. Based on his accent, he sounds like someone from S. Yorkshire/Sheffield, but I'm not sure. I simply forgot about it, but then I heard it again from LavLuka just the other day, and it rekindled my curiosity, as LavLuka is in/around Norwich. Leasnam (talk) 18:29, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
How about gold? Chuck Entz (talk) 05:59, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Is it possible for you to link to any examples that we can listen to? Mihia (talk) 08:57, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Never heard of it. Equinox 12:52, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Ah, gold might be it. But it's still unusual because it clearly has 2 very distinct syllables: /ˈɡəʊ.ɛd/ and even as /ˈɡəʊ.wɛd/, and I would imagine 'gold' would merely be /ɡəʊld/. If I can find a link to the example I'll add it. Leasnam (talk) 18:24, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Here's the link: [[13]]. If you start it at 0:27, you'll hear Lav say "Internet Historian is /ˈɡəʊ.wɛd/..." - it's clearly not 'gold' that he's saying imo Leasnam (talk) 18:45, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Do you know if he speaks any other languages? DTLHS (talk) 19:03, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Could it be a pronunciation influenced from Scots guid? DTLHS (talk) 19:14, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Hmm, highly doubtful. As mentioned above, Beesley, who now lives in Jersey, but is obviously got a Yorkshire dialect, also uses the same word, same pronunciation, same meaning (whatever that precisely may be). I think I've heard it from one other YouTuber who I think might be from around Birmingham - same pronunciation, same strata, etc. It's a pickle, innit ? Leasnam (talk) 19:24, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Well anyway, this seems like the kind of thing the OED likes, and would have more resources to investigate. DTLHS (talk) 19:46, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
This man to me too appears influenced by Yorkshire accent, although I note some MLE features. For it one formulates: “If a close vowel precedes /l/, a schwa may be inserted”. So it is probably gold. Other schwa anaptyxes are shown for the Sheffield dialect. Fay Freak (talk) 20:15, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Based on the accent (which I can comprehend perfectly) I don't think he is saying "gold". I suspect some Internet meme, e.g. a funny pronunciation by a gamer that got adopted by others. As WF says, you'll have to ask. (Could it be a funny form of "good", like "doge" for "dog"?) Equinox 20:42, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
With all due respect, I feel like we're running down a wrong rabbit hole with trying to make this a dialectal pronunciation of some common phrase - I listen to these blokes every day, and this is the only term that has thrown me after several years of listening. It's not a pronunciation peculiarity. Rather, my gut instinct is telling me this is a new slang term that is yet unknown to us, but is common among young Brits. Leasnam (talk) 20:31, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Well, a dialectal pronunciation of some common phrase that has an additional connotation or become a meme. Ask around though. If it is moderately common among young Brits one will afford an answer. Fay Freak (talk) 20:44, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
FWIW, which is not a lot, I would have no idea what he said or meant there at 0:27 by "go-ed". I don't detect any Yorkshire influence in his accent as someone suggested. To my ear he has a southern or south-eastern England accent with a faint trace of some kind of black/Caribbean influence, e.g. when he says "yeah man", possibly deliberate/affected, I don't know. Mihia (talk)
I agree, it’s not Yorkshire, most likely London (oops, just realised we’re both talking about the Norwich YouTuber, the other youth is indeed probably from South Yorkshire). I don’t have a scooby about ‘go-ed’ though. Overlordnat1 (talk) 22:55, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The closed captioning – which is too ɡʊːɪd to be auto-generated – renders it as "good", which gives a semantically good fit (“if the historian is good I'm not going to skip his ad if he has one”).  --Lambiam 08:56, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I also checked the CC, which reads 'good', as I believe it did also with Beesley, as a type of nearest approximation (I don't know who actually enters the text, if it's the YouTuber or someone else working for YouTube) but I don't find CC to be necessarily accurate all of the time. I've encountered a lot of discrepancies with it. Leasnam (talk) 10:50, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The only YouTube captions I can get on this video are labelled "auto-generated". I haven't checked much of it, but just before the 0:27 moment there is "i enjoyed the owl on ones" for "I enjoyed the hour-long ones" which does not seem like an error that a human would make (a bit of an 'owler in fact, ha-ha). Even so, I also noticed that the 0:27 word is captioned as "good", which is slightly surprising as it is nothing like any pronunciation of "good" that I have ever heard. Perhaps even so it is the nearest match. Mihia (talk) 17:26, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Okay - I've found the Beesley (the Yorkshire guy) clip here: [[14]]. If you start at 2:42 you'll hear him say "McDonald's fries are 'go-ed', absolutely 'go-wed'"...(?--or is it 'go-ward' he's saying perhaps ?). He then says it again at 3:03 ("McDonald's fries are absolutely 'go-wed'"), and again at 4:13 ("Maybe your fries aren't as 'go-wed' as ours."), and again at 4:54 ("Wow, somehow I'm going to have to get some American chips. And I need to test this, 'cuz UK chips are 'go-wed', man. I need to test the American ones."), and again at 6:10 ("Again, McDonald's Coke, 'go-wed'."). Leasnam (talk) 11:08, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Checking the CC on Beesley above, I was actually mistaken when I said they transcribe it as "good"...they don't, they simply leave out the word entirely as though they couldn't comprehend it either. However, I did check on one other, the one at 4:54, and they transcribe it as "goated" :| Leasnam (talk) 11:17, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I also want to point out this is not the way he pronounces the word 'good'. I've heard him say 'good' many times and it's clearly the word 'good'. You can hear him say 'good' at 2:58, where he says "good idea" Leasnam (talk) 11:22, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Hello, I think this mystery word is goated (GOAT (Greatest of All Time) + -ed). I am from southern Wales and have never personally encountered this, but some googling confirms that goated exists as a (informal) way of saying something is of exceptional quality, and this fits the contexts you have cited quite well. At GOAT the usage as "Greatest of All Time" is labelled as US, but I have seen that GOAT is becoming more common among younger speakers in England, which certainly fits the speakers in these videos. ShellfaceTheStrange (talk) 16:11, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
(e/c) The idea that it started with someone mispronouncing a word like good (whether inadvertently or intentionally for comic effect or emphasis) and other people in their milieu copying it (for comic effect or emphasis) seems like the simplest explanation to me, ETA although if TheStrange is right GOATed might also work if these speakers generally reduce other ts.
I've heard a couple YouTubers (e.g. Modest Pelican, who is Australian) say "/wæmɪn/ gamers", despite pronouncing women regularly in other phrases, which again seems like just a jocular mispronunciation spreading memetically. (Modest Pelican also uses some other uncommon slang, like /mə.læk.ə(ɹ)/ / Citations:malaka/Talk:malaka, and /lɛɹ.ɪ.kən/.) A few years ago, I both heard in speech and saw in writing a few British people using nip as an insult like idiot or knob, but no-one here had heard it; I don't know if that was a misrendering of nit or knob or something else (on the subject of obscure slang people are always coming up with). - -sche (discuss) 16:17, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I think Shellface is correct: the word is "goated". Mihia (talk) 17:34, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The only issue I have with it being 'GOATed' is that it just doesn't sound like the way a Brit would say 'GOATed' or 'goated'. It's clearly /ˈɡəʊ.(w)ɛd/ not /ˈɡəʊʔɪd/ - there's a clear 'w' glide in there and the 'ɛd' is very clearly enunciated. But all other things seem to point to 'GOATed' as being the best fit. It's possible that it began as /ˈɡəʊʔɪd/ and over time hearing the word second and third hand distanced the end-hearers from the true origin, as they likely picked it up in speech rather than in writing, and it morphed into /ˈɡəʊ.(w)ɛd/. I dunno (?) Leasnam (talk) 17:38, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
To my ear, once one is aware that the word could be "goated", it is fairly clear and within "normal" parameters. Unfortunately, this kind of excruciatingly slovenly pronunciation is now almost becoming the norm amongst British (especially English) people. Mihia (talk) 21:01, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I am convinced it's "GOATed" now; this is a (recent?) slang word I didn't know. Also agree that the /w/ instead of /ʔ/ is plausible. Equinox 23:32, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks everyone for helping me figure this out ! Sense has been added to goated. Leasnam (talk) 00:43, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I think it would be helpful to add this particular pronunciation to the entry, since it's not intuitive. I suspect that the typical pronunciation, or at least the American one, would be /ɡoʊtəd/, however. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 20:39, 18 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The kind of ear-hurting pronunciation heard in these videos is in no way limited to the word "goated" but is an increasingly sorry feature of British English speech generally, and could apply equally to "voted", "coated", "boated", etc. Mihia (talk) 22:35, 18 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Interesting. Nonetheless, it should be added to entries, at least in phonetic form. If it's a pronunciation that people use, it's helpful to know that, and helpful to know what dialects/accents it is a feature of. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 03:56, 19 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Even if this is derived from G.O.A.T., this in turn is very likely a wordplay on good and goat (as symbol of evil incarnate) for a dramaturgical oxymoron. Everyone picked it up and self labeled as GOAT so that's where we are. I doubt it was organically grown.
It would have been my first guess here too, but I missed that the T would glottalize and thought it's from a spelling pronounciation although t shouldn't become voiced. So, kudos to theStranger, but between this and that I think GOATed maybe was hypercorrected from GOAT, maybe in jest. Either way it doesn't make too much sense as participle, so I could care less. ApisAzuli (talk) 03:41, 19 September 2021 (UTC)[]


We list three senses: the "mystical obligation" sense from Irish mythology, "a mystical compulsion"—the cites for which do kinda seem to support something distinct from "an obligation"—and "a curse". Is "curse" really a distinct sense, or is it just saying that having a magical obligation placed on you is a curse? I doubt RFV would be productive, because someone will just supply citations like I've already supplied, which speak of "a curse or geas" or call putting a geas on someone "cursing" them, but my point is that these could still be sense 1, no? Is geas ever used for a curse that's not a mystical obligation? For example, there's a cite calling Cassandra's compulsion that she must prophesy a geas, but would anyone call the curse that other people don't believe her a geas (curse) on her? (I don't think so.) - -sche (discuss) 16:02, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]


Hi, the Wiktionary entry for these words says:

   IPA: [ˈsuʐɨvət͡sə]
   IPA: [ˈsʔuʐɨvət͡sə]
   IPA: [ˈsuzʲɪt͡sə]
   IPA: [ˈsʔuzʲɪt͡sə]

The pronunciations on Forvo do not show glottal stops after the /s/. Can anyone confirm the viability of the pronunciation with a glottal stop? 20:37, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Both pronunciations exist, I personally have used and heard both. Thadh (talk) 20:39, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]
+. Fay Freak (talk) 20:41, 14 September 2021 (UTC)[]

High hamzaEdit

For Malay terms in Jawi spelling, we are used to use superscript tag over normal hamza <sup>ء</sup> to represent high hamza. Now, Unicode 14.0 is added more information in their chart: "0674 ARABIC LETTER HIGH HAMZA • Kazakh, Jawi • forms digraphs", that we have to use U+0674 as real high hamza instead of we currently used. (Malay terms do not use normal hamza.) I hope your guys ignore what your system font presents and help to replace it everywhere to the end. (BabelMap will help you select the right character.) --Octahedron80 (talk) 00:12, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]

This looks like a bot job to me. It is not immediately clear to me how this high hamza is to be used; current باءيق should become what? باٴيق?  --Lambiam 16:28, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I had to dump the Unicode sequence to understand what you meant. On the Mac I am using now, using Firefox, your example باٴيق renders the same as بأيق (where I typed U+0623 Alef with hamza above in place of your U+0627 Alef, U+0674 High hamza). If I cut and paste into a Terminal window, your example gives a separated high hamza. If I cut and paste into an emacs window the high hamza becomes invisible. In the TextEdit application and in Safari, alef followed by high hamza renders almost the same as alef with hamza above, except the hamza is shifted left by about the width of the vertical stroke of the alef. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 16:43, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I simply meant to ask what باءيق‎ should become. This is obviously not obvious. I suggest that we do not cavalierly “ignore what your system font presents” but wait till we know (a) how the change should look in Unicode, (b) how it should like in a browser, and (c) it actually does look like that in commonly used browsers.  --Lambiam 16:27, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
With Segoe UI & Noto (any) Arabic fonts, the high hamza is just put next to the letter, so how the appearance we see is the particular font issue. You will see this باٴيق (I put the fonts on it). In the logic of data storing/mining, it should use the right character (for right binary value) rather than how it looks. In other words, the HTML tag is not a part of the data. The U+0674 ARABIC LETTER HIGH HAMZA is the normal letter per Unicode's general category; it is not a [diacritical] mark like U+0654 ARABIC HAMZA ABOVE. The أ U+0623 ARABIC LETTER ALEF WITH HAMZA ABOVE is equal to the sequence U+0627 U+0654 but not equal to the sequence U+0627 U+0674. In Malay, we use the ک U+06A9 ARABIC LETTER KEHEH contrary to the normal ك U+0643 ARABIC LETTER KAF. Why don't we apply the high hamza either? --Octahedron80 (talk) 01:00, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
How it should look: “It is also important to remember the high hamza takes up horizontal space.” “the user should also add a high hamza () in front of the whole character string, at the same time, all the forms are the same as U+0649 (ى). This is the reason why we need to encode a spacing high hamza ().”
Some Far East discussion. They didn’t know that in Arabic and Ottoman manuscript one also put a hamza on yāʾ, which then had the two dots below it; currently not encodable, only undotted yāʾ with hamza above is encodable]. Now there is a problematic canonical decomposition of undotted yāʾ with hamza above to dotted yāʾ with combining hamza above instead of alif maqṣūra with combining hamza above. So you really see the sign encoded here should be “just put next to the letter” and does not look wrong like that, the Unicode overlords willed it so, and it was always for this and not something different. Fay Freak (talk) 00:52, 18 September 2021 (UTC)[]


Hello. I noticed there are no etymology page for Russian suffix ending -ара. Because it's pretty productive suffix: волчара, бычара, зайчара, слоняра, рыбяра, лосяра etc. almost all of them are from roots of animals. Though there are few exceptions: лошара(from лох), очередняра, сучара. I didn't find it in old dictionaries so i guess it's recent thing. Any ideas about etymology? —⁠This unsigned comment was added by Kutkar (talkcontribs) at 14:00, 15 September 2021 (UTC).[]


The term fetch-and-carry is a noun derived from the verb fetch and carry. Is the noun a gerund, or is a word only considered a gerund if it is formed from a verb by the addition of the suffix -ing? — SGconlaw (talk) 17:29, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Only an -ing-form can be a gerund in English. DCDuring (talk) 18:17, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]
OK, thanks. — SGconlaw (talk) 18:28, 15 September 2021 (UTC)[]

cop - slang or informalEdit

We show cop (police officer) as being slang, but is it really slang or is it just informal ? At least here in the US, everyone knows and uses the word cop, so it's not associated with any particular group or subset of people. Here it's just a synonym for the more formal term 'police officer' right ? I would say it began as slang (shortened from copper), but it has elevated itself over time and is now almost a standard term. Thoughts ? Leasnam (talk) 11:25, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]

You'd never see a job advertisement recruiting "cops". Equinox 14:23, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I'm not so sure about that. See here [[15]], [[16]], [[17]]. Sure, one may look like an acronym (COPS or C.O.P.S.), but nowhere could I find out what it stood for. Also, this one is hard to spot on the page, but it's under 'Street Cop Training' (best to do a Search/Find) [[18]]. Lastly [[19]] uses 'cop' in a way incongruent with what we think of as slang. It's a synonym of 'police officer' and used in an intelligent manner. Leasnam (talk) 17:02, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I did a little digging and found that our word cop may be in part derived from Constable On Patrol, or at least the acronym COP may be derived from that. In any event, we would need to reconcile FIRE for a firefighter as being an acronym too, but I'd say disregard that particular link. It really doesn't matter all that much, just because it's not used in formal job postings and requisitions doesn't make it slang. Leasnam (talk) 17:14, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Cop is less respectful, but I wouldn't call it slang. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 17:11, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
According to our Appendix definition slang is particular to a group, and this word isn’t, so it is not slang. Though it perhaps once was. Fay Freak (talk) 19:10, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Yeah, it's not [[slang]], because it's not "outside of conventional usage", "unique to a particular profession or subject" or "specialized [to] a social group", it's found across the board. Even police use it—yes, even in recruitment, the Phoenix PD's recruitment phone number is 534-COPS. Here's a Philadelphia police captain talking about a "cops vs kids" sports game, the NYPD talking about one, and a Rhode Island PD; here's North Yorkshire (UK) police talking about "cops vs kids" esports. It's less formal, but news media use it, from Fox to PBS to the NYT (Miami Herald, etc), and academic journals of sociology ("consequences if officers reported another cop's misconduct"), law, mathematics, etc. (These books even suggest the situation is a little more complex than police officer being more respectful, although that's the gist for most people.) Perhaps usage notes would allow for more explanation than a label? - -sche (discuss) 19:52, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
It must have been slang at least originally. (Hotten's 1873 slang dictionary led me to create copt the other day!) Perhaps it has become "normalised". How do we use our lb gloss template to show change in gloss over time? Equinox 20:45, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree it was definitely slang at one time. For the time being, until we resolve a Usage note, I'll correct the labelling. Leasnam (talk) 21:54, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Maybe something like "Originally a slang term, but now in general use, including by journalists and police. Terms like police officer are generally considered more respectful." ? Ngrams has "cop" / "cops" overtaking "police officer(s)" in commonness about twenty years ago. - -sche (discuss) 22:33, 16 September 2021 (UTC)[]
That seems like an appropriate usage note. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 00:06, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
If a clipping of copper, it definitely began its monosyllabic life as a slang term. Derivation from Constable On Patrol quacks and waddles like a backronym.  --Lambiam 10:52, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]

pussy “slang”Edit

But @Equinox, one reads a lot of advertisements offering and seeking pussies. Following your reasoning, pussy is not slang. And you have to have a reasoning, as if we use a label this widely then it has a definable meaning. If you can’t tell why it is slang then you disappoint us much. As I have checked, none of the definitions in slang apply, in agreement with our appendix definitions. Either the label or our definitions of it are pork pies.

My reasonable guess is that you are old. Why are twat and quim labelled slang while fanny and cunt are not? It must be just a deference for the ages of the latter words. As they are about equally well understood. Slang can’t be just your gut-feel like the apperception of a twang but has to be put into terms, and for this basic a body part there needs has developed a ladder, with a middle ground between sought obscure terms and technical terms: what is the go-to term, if overly medical and overly vulgar terminology is avoided? If you ask me it is first choice in relaxed speech on the internet. It must have become so because a dichotomy between slangs’ rarities and complicated circumscriptions is unstable. The breakthrough of the term into non-slang has been occasioned by the new medial configuration.

What are you even telling the reader with the label? I also reckoned the labels noisy more than helpful. This is only confirmed by the definition being disputed. Notably equivalents in other languages have not been labelled so. You would probably mark German Möse, Russian манда́ (mandá) and Arabic كُس(kus) with the same label but the foreign-language editors found no use for it. This is also an indication that the slang label was only an unfounded feeling, as people look more distanced at things when they deal with multiple languages. Fay Freak (talk) 00:42, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

FWIW, German Muschi is labelled 'slang'. –Austronesier (talk) 10:36, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Austronesier: I was aware. Surely it took over the label from the English entry by analogy. That’s what editors do. ☺️ However the label for Russian ки́ска (kíska) is appropriate, it having been invented in the internet age as an oblique mode of reference and still being rare. So you see that as we label Russian ки́ска (kíska) as slang and English pussy as slang their great usage difference is blurred. Fay Freak (talk) 13:25, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Fay Freak: Remove it then in the German lemma? The term seems to be old (but really as old as is claimed here[20]?): here is a 1965 source for my own local dialect[21]. –Austronesier

transpire 'proscribed by whom' in the sense of 'happen'?Edit

New here. I was reverted; talk page referred me here. Usage in question notoriously proscribed by some. This will suffice for now:

  • 'The notorious misuse of this word consists in making it mean happen or turn out or go on […] [It is a] wrong meaning […]' – Fowler. Usage. 2nd ed., s.v.
  • '[L]anguage critics have condemned it for more than one hundred years as both pretentious and unconnected to the word's original meaning […]' – The Free Dictionary, s.v.
    The actual source is American Heritage Dictionary whose panel of old men is often behind the curve. DCDuring (talk) 16:00, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  • 'It is often maintained that transpire should not be used to mean happen or occur, as in the event transpired late in the evening, and that the word is properly used to mean become known, as in it transpired later that the thief had been caught. The word is, however, widely used in the former sense, esp in spoken English' – Collins English Dictionary, s.v.
  • 'This loose sense […] is often criticized as jargon, an unnecessarily long word used where occur or happen would do just as well' – Lexico, s.v.

Contribber (talk) 01:45, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Hi. The sources are interesting, although (as much as I love Fowler) I wouldn't place too much stock in century-old guidebooks that were based more on someone's opinion than on actually studying the usage even of the time. I do think it might merit a usage note (we have a standard way to add a "usage notes" section on entries here). However, you'd probably be hard pushed to find any authority today that would see this as a serious error (even your Collins link says "still regarded by some as a loose usage", suggesting that the criticism is on the way out). Equinox 01:58, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
nah, I gathered some quick examples and meant F. only as illustration. Every other dictionary makes some mention of this. The stress is on 'sometimes'. Contribber (talk) 02:03, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Wiktionary does not have to mirror what other dictionaries out there are saying – actual usage is always more important. I second Equinox, maybe we should add a usage notes section, but labelling it as "sometimes proscribed" is counterintuitive IMO. --Robbie SWE (talk) 07:29, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
So 'counterintuitive in your opinion'. But more is needed in the way of counterargument if it shouldn't be reinserted on the basis roughly outlined. It's not true that it is not sometimes proscribed; so the argument must address why such a conditional proscription itself wouldn't be as significant as is apparent from citations I much could multiply.
It clearly wasn't argued or implied dictionaries should be 'mirrored', I'm sorry; the significance of sources was indicated. Nor could any of this entail not documenting actual usage. I then have to remind that you reverted the edit asking 'By whom?', indicating ignorance to begin with. And while the question is getting answered, the goalposts are for some reason moved.
Both here haven't been on-point or concrete enough.
The essence: A sufficient number regard the usage as ultimately 'affected' or 'dubious', as reflected in contemporary style guides, dictionaries and other sources. Thus not merely 'loose'. This is just a fact to be recognised. The reader has now the advantage of being educated. The advantage consists, among several things, in the possibility of the informed choice: Shall I venture this use to the specific audience now before me, knowing whom it could distract? A basic dictionary matter.
So I added a usage note. Absent any sourced or adequate non-speculative reasons against, I think I'll add back 'sometimes proscribed'. It's true and unambiguous. Contribber (talk) 06:45, 18 September 2021 (UTC)[]
That usage note is so editorialized (and your absolute loathing of that sense shines through just from it) that I wouldn't be surprised if other people would change it the first moment they see it. Indeed, there's been an edit war on that very entry now. — surjection??⟩ 08:37, 19 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Now (10:42, 20 September 2021 (UTC)) it leans the other way; I can’t help reading “some critics” as meaning “some schoolmarmy prescriptionist pedants”.  --Lambiam 10:42, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
You're entirely mistaken about my personal attitude to it, because I don't care about it directly. I'm primarily interested in the stylistic usage questions for other reasons. Besides, it's not 'editoralised' at all. What specifically makes you claim that? Maybe your own feelings are shining through. Objectively, though, I think it should indicate there is also more weight to the opinion of the critics than is implied presently. The question seems still a matter of dispute, and many contemporary style guides even unconditionally proscribe it. Contribber (talk) 13:22, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
To quote from Garner's Modern American Usage (2009):
"transpire. The traditionally correct meaning of this word is "to pass through a surface; come to light; become known by degrees." But that sense is now beyond redemption, though writers should be aware of it. Today, of course, the popular use of transpire is as a FORMAL WORD equivalent to happen, occur, or take place. But when used in that way, transpire is a mere pomposity displacing an everyday word []
"Another loose usage occurs [] when transpire is used for pass or elapse []
"All in all, transpire fits the definition of a SKUNKED TERM: careful writers should avoid it altogether simply to avoid distracting any readers, whether traditionalists (who dislike the modern usage) or others (who may not understand the traditional usage.
transpire for happen or occur: Stage 4 ["Ubiquitous but [] ")"
And this purports only to reflect US usage, not UK, Canada, India, ANZ, etc.
I don't think we have sufficient interest in developing and maintaining fact-based usage notes that do not violate copyright. In any event our primary mission is to help normal users to understand how terms are being and have been used, not to help "careful writers" in nuanced word selection. We don't even have the ability to reliably determine the relative frequency of use of words in the various definitions we provide. DCDuring (talk) 16:45, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks. Though not necessarily only, I primarily meant such ad-hoc style guides (and admonitions in general) as people are required to follow in real life, like in work, officially, in newspapers, by copy editors, in journals, etc., where this is often practically encountered. The Economist and the US Department of Defense are prominent examples surfacing at once in search engines. You'll find a lot of such examples.
Usage reference works of the general kind like Garner, if they don't circumspectly avoid the subject, mostly uncommittedly advise 'care', exceptions being Modern Fowler, which in effect really recommends against it, and conversely Webster, saying it has become idiomatic (not without justification, in my opinion), with Cambridge and a couple of others then just adopting or quoting Webster.
Maybe the usage note is sufficient; I've become more willing to consider it for reasons of simplicity, but am still not really convinced. (I'm not going to headbutt a consensus but appreciate the discussion.) It seems conspicuous that there isn't at least some slight caveat. Unquestionably, many avoid the phrase as an informed choice. Responses then often ascribe this to a mere 'dislike', which is unfair and silly, and base their understanding of validity on mere prevalence; in this way it will probably remain a point of contention indefinitely.
So you have the case where a certain usage is frequently both observed and avoided, making it difficult to argue, 'Used five million times, therefore OK', as at the same time it might have been avoided just as frequently, which there would be no way to prove.
Maybe there's a more adequate term than 'sometimes proscribed'. Any ideas? Contribber (talk) 23:00, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
“Sometimes fulminated against”?  --Lambiam 23:13, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Regretfully, Fowler often fails to stem the tide, but hopefully the Usage Note essays for other (in some cases ex-)skunked-word formulations he has fulminated against [I love these phrases] may help in writing one here.--Enginear 22:32, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]

If a verb takes the genitive case, is it transitive?Edit

I came across the page ieškoti which claims that the verb is transitive. The verb has to be used with the genitive of the noun phrase rather than the accusative, e.g. "he is looking for his dog" would be "ieško savo šuns" and not *"ieško savo šunį", where šuns is the genitive form of šuo. (It can also take the infinitive of a verb, e.g. "ieškau pirkti..." - "I'm looking to buy".) For the purpose of Wiktionary, does "transitive" just mean that it takes any object, or does it have to be a direct accusative object? Is there a good way to indicate this information in the entry? 08:20, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]

For languages like English and French with helper prepositions we have {{indtr}}. In the absence of advice from Lithuanian editors I suggest {{lb|lt|transitive|with|genitive}}. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 12:53, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  Done 23:23, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Fun. This week a grammar guru blogged that not all transitive verbs are equally transitive. In my view transitive verbs are also those that can only be construed with prepositions, because transitive is property of semantic relatability. But yes, grammars aren’t explicit about this question. Fay Freak (talk) 23:59, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]

nabe#English is also short for nabemono#EnglishEdit

"Nabe" should also appear in English as a short form for "nabemono#English" -- 15:12, 17 September 2021 (UTC)[]

¿? -- 14:30, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Talaing: Obsolete?Edit

@RichardW57 I was recently a witness to the discussion of Talaing, which appears to be an English language equivalent of an offensive term. Per my understanding of 'obsolete', as used in the Wiktionary context, that's just not the right word here since I've got like four or five quotations from the 20th and 21st century where the term is used, and I don't think those are oddities because we have about four English dictionaries listed in 'Further reading' that bring up the term. To me, a word like Xensi is an 'obsolete' term because it is literally just not used at all, and hasn't been for a century or more. I bring this here rather than making the change to the page myself because the term seems contentious and also I have little grasp of Mon or Burma culture. --Geographyinitiative (talk) 23:31, 17 September 2021 (UTC) (modified)[]

@Geographyinitiative: It's the English descendant of an allegedly offensive term. It came into English as an ordinary ethnonym, and I don't believe there's anything offensive about the Thai cognate either, at least not beyond the automatic implication of not being British / not being Thai, and therefore being of a lesser breed. There does seem to be much more recent usage of the English word than I had expected, and I will not oppose the removal of the tag 'obsolete'. --RichardW57 (talk) 00:08, 18 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Per this discussion I preliminarily removed "lb|en|obsolete"; it may need to be replaced with a more appropriate qualifier. Appendix:Glossary#obsolete currently says: "No longer in use, and (of a term) no longer likely to be understood. Obsolete is a stronger term than archaic, and a much stronger term than dated." I want to emphasize that Wiktionary includes offensive terms and they need appropriate documentation and qualification. --Geographyinitiative (talk) 22:57, 18 September 2021 (UTC)[]

scapegoat (verb)Edit

  1. To punish someone for the error or errors of someone else; to make a scapegoat of.
  2. To blame something for the problems of a given society without evidence to back up the claim.

These senses are similar enough to merge, right? Ultimateria (talk) 18:26, 19 September 2021 (UTC)[]

I agree. — SGconlaw (talk) 20:07, 19 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Merge them. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 20:21, 19 September 2021 (UTC)[]
And leave out the allusion to a putative absence of evidence.  --Lambiam 10:23, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Okay, I've merged them, but I think we should also remove "errors" in the definition. You can be the scapegoat for e.g. a natural disaster or failing crops. I can't figure out how to word it though. Collins has "blame ... for something bad that has happened". Ultimateria (talk) 17:07, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I've expanded the definition and usex to cover natural disasters. This could still be improved (shortened). - -sche (discuss) 20:11, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Reply tool for everyoneEdit

Hello, all. I have good news about the mw:Talk pages project.

The Reply tool puts the [reply] button on talk pages. Next week, everyone will have the Reply tool turned on. You will be able to turn it off in Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-editing-discussion. You can read more about it at mw:Help:DiscussionTools.

You can try it out now by turning on "Discussion tools" in Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-betafeatures. (That will add some other features, too. Only the Reply tool will be turned on for everyone. The other Discussion tools are still being tested.)

Please let me know if you have any questions. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 20:01, 20 September 2021 (UTC)[]

This is   Done! Please let me know if you run into any problems. There is some technical information at mw:Help:DiscussionTools/Why can't I reply to this comment? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 17:07, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]
@Whatamidoing (WMF): For future reference, you're posting this on the wrong forum. General news goes in WT:BP. If you added this comment based on a list somewhere, please update it; if you added this comment manually, please read forum descriptions before posting. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 17:27, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Oh, thanks. I usually look for the place that I posted in most recently, which isn't always the right one.
BTW, this was   Done this morning. I hope that it works out. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 20:02, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]

reactor scramEdit

Is this not sum of parts? See scram, noun sense regarding reactors. And are the three senses truly distinct? Equinox 23:58, 21 September 2021 (UTC)[]

  • Delete as SoP. — SGconlaw (talk) 07:50, 22 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Was mono ever the word for monk in Spanish?Edit

I wonder if this is just a false memory, because even rae.es doesnt have it, but .... I remember our teacher in high school Spanish pointing out that mono was the Spanish word for monk, after we had already learned that it was the word for monkey, and saying something like, "that makes sense, right?" And I'd always assumed that words like monastery were just transparently derived from the mono word in Spanish and in other Romance languages. But it seems it's not so. I know my old paper Spanish dictionary (which I no longer have) was old-fashioned even when it was first published, and included some localisms like ñaño~ñaña, which I swore by because I'd actually heard them growing up even in America. That's why I'm not entirely convinced I was wrong .... but still, the word for monk is less likely to have a colloquialism than a word for brother or sister. Does anyone else here think there's a chance I am pulling on some extremely old alternate usage that may have somehow made it into the dictionary but which even rae.es no longer includes? Thanks, Soap 18:00, 22 September 2021 (UTC)[]

I've never heard it. The Real Academia usually errs on the side of including obsolete/archaic terms... The association could come from English monk-monkey or even different senses of capuchin. Ultimateria (talk) 03:05, 24 September 2021 (UTC)[]
@Soap: Or perhaps an imagined similar-sounding cognate of French moine [mwan].--Ser be être 是talk/stalk 04:37, 24 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Was your teacher a native Spanish speaker? Roger the Rodger (talk) 17:46, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I dont know .... because to be honest, if Im remembering the lesson this badly, Im not sure I trust myself to remember which teacher it was either. I had quite a few of them over the years. Im pretty sure this is just a false memory, since for this to be real it'd have to either be an irregular shortening of the longer word or a direct reborrowing from Greek μόνος .... which, from what I can tell, never means monk even in religious contexts. Soap 22:30, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]


For this word Wiktionary says "Alternative spelling of tsarevich"; but Wikipedia says "not to be confused with Tsarevich"; "Usage: It is often confused with "tsarevich", which is a distinct word with a different meaning ..."
Milkunderwood (talk) 04:57, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[]

  • Link title term; also, at tsarevich, "tsesarevich" is similarly given as an alternative form, which per Wikipedia is wrong. Milkunderwood (talk) 05:28, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't know a lot about Russian or Russian history, so I can't say much about the issue at hand, but I will point out that these terms are from Russian царевич (carevič) and цесаревич (cesarevič), which are derived from царь (carʹ) and цесарь (cesarʹ), respectively. Etymologically, the components of these words all go back to the same ancestral forms, so, in a sense, these could be described as alternative spellings of the same word. In fact, it looks to me like Peter the Great took a minor variant and made a separate word out of it so he could define it the way he wanted to. Chuck Entz (talk) 06:25, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't know any Russian at all, and am not familiar with Wiktionary's policies on questions like this -- just pointing out the disagreement here with the distinction made at Wikipedia between the two words (or forms of the word). I guess if the distinction stands up to scrutiny, personally I would not describe them as being simply "alternative spellings", since they have different meanings -- regardless of whether Peter may have coined a new word. An "alternative spelling" assumes the meanings remain identical. Milkunderwood (talk) 07:41, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  • They are romanizations of two different Russian words, which have different articles (Царевич and Цесаревич) on the Russian Wikipedia. The latter article states that it is unfortunate that both terms are often rendered as tsarevich in Western European languages; the historical uses and senses are different.  --Lambiam 08:52, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Glad you verified this. Can you make corrections to both entries then? I'm just a bystander here. Milkunderwood (talk) 01:53, 24 September 2021 (UTC)[]
  Done.  --Lambiam 12:49, 24 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Excellent explanation - thanks very much for your help. Looking back at tsarevich, I now notice what seems to be a related problem, where it gives three different sets of translations, for 1) a son of a tsar, a prince; 2) the firstborn son of a tsar; and 3) the crown prince. These distinctions are more or less the same as what you just explained, but the three sets of translations are identical, other than excluding one or another language. My impression is that the latter two translation sets should be removed - or at least one of them; normally the firstborn [living] son would be the crown prince, so this seems like a distinction without a difference. In any event, with perhaps two exceptions, these are all simply respellings from the Russian rather than real translations. Is it useful to have any of these at all for such an obscure and obsolete term? Milkunderwood (talk) 21:08, 25 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I try to avoid dealing with translations, unless the target language is one I'm familiar with. The way the translation tables are handled now is not robust; they are too sensitive to changes in the definitions, which will often throw them out of sync. But tsarevich used in the sense of цесаревич is hardly an obscure and obsolete term; it is commonly found in contemporary sources (novels, films, works of history) that deal with the Russian Empire. I cannot guess, though, whether a Japanese translator would mimic the English abuse of term by using ツァレーヴィチ, or rather choose to use the historically more accurate ツェサレーヴィチ.  --Lambiam 23:09, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
That's my point -- the three separate sets are identical. I'll remove the 2nd and 3rd sets, and see if anyone wants to put them back. Milkunderwood (talk) 03:02, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

"you yoho"Edit

===Etymology 2===
Corruption of {{m|en|yahoo}}.


# {{lb|en|rare|slang|derogatory}} {{synonym of|en|yahoo}}; [[yokel]], [[lout]]

(above is the entry I drafted)

In this clip from a now infamous Michigan court case, from May 2021, which has now gained a bit of media attention and has become somewhat of an Internet meme, the judge calls the man with the vulgar username a "yoho". I could have absolutely sworn this was common slang in English (pretty sure I've heard it before!) and expected to find it here on Wiktionary. Unfortunately it wasn't, and when I look in Google Books etc., there appears to be very little if any usage of the term outside of news sources referencing to this court case. I find this extremely strange, and maybe I'm suffering from the Mandela effect, and what I was remembering maybe was just yahoo. I believe the judge's chosen word here was at least a corruption of the word yahoo. Can anyone else find valid attestation for this, after I've tried and failed?

Yoho is also the name of a British Columbia national park, a lake in New Brunswick, and a town in Hong Kong, and from digging through Books I believe it may even be a name given to an Indian tribe or something (you'll find what I'm talking about when you search "yohos"). So while those probably also need definitions here at Yoho, be mindful of those if searching for this slang word. PseudoSkull (talk) 05:44, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[]

नौ, "boat"Edit

In the Ṛgveda verse 2.39.4 there is nāvéva (first word of the verse) = nāvā́ + इव (iva), "like two boats". This is about the only attestation of the form nāvā́ as the nominative/accusative dual, I think. The ending for nom./acc./voc. dual also matches the regular declension pattern in the older Sanskrit of the most archaic part of the Vedas.

So is there a way to add this form nāvā́ to the declension table currently at the page नौ (nau)? I tried using the {{sa-decl-noun-f}} but the underlying module currently can't recognize the stem. The page now uses a workaround with {{sa-decl}} with manually populated cells, but that template can't seem to take multiple forms for a single cell (and lacks support for accents, I think). --Frigoris (talk) 08:14, 24 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Well, I did find a partial workaround. --Frigoris (talk) 07:49, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Swedish word risEdit

Currently the gender information is not given. I think it should be neuter but I'm only a learner so I'll leave the editing to more versed people. --Betty (talk) 03:54, 25 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Judging from uses, the word appears to be neuter in all three senses: [22], [23], [24].  --Lambiam 14:29, 25 September 2021 (UTC)[]
It is indeed neuter in all senses (see also "ris" at svenska.se). I've edited the entry accordingly. Voltaigne (talk) 22:56, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

the definition of ‘yclept’Edit

I have an old Merriam Webster Dictionary that gives the definition of ‘clept’ or ‘cleped’ as to speak, call, ring or knock. The past participle still in use, an adj. that means called, as in named. Would it be possible to

show the early usage as the participle form as having shades of to ring or to knock? I don’t use the OED anymore, the scholars’ version for extensive etymology. It would seem ‘yclept’ could be aptly archaic and retain 

The meanings of named, called, rung and knocked. What do you think? —⁠This unsigned comment was added by (talk) at 20:45, 25 September 2021 (UTC).[]

I think we should stick with the current etymology. It is basically an alternative spelling of Middle English ycleped, a past participle of the verb clepen (to speak, to cry). I’d need to see evidence for a sense “to knock”, which might suggest cognacy with Old Dutch *cloppōn, Old High German clophōn.  --Lambiam 12:01, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]


A Googler with a pet; most likely a blend of dog (a type of pet) + Googler (source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDd5w3kmhHM&t=80s). Can it be added as another entry in the dictionary? Because Idk how to make Wiktionary entries myself. 21:24, 25 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Unless it is used outside of Google marketing videos, no it cannot be added. DTLHS (talk) 23:55, 25 September 2021 (UTC)[]
We do have Noogler, Xoogler, Gaygler, but I'm not sure this one has really "made it" yet. Equinox 03:04, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

ask for someone's hand in marriageEdit

I've just created this, but I have several questions:

In any case, regardless of what this expression means, I don't think we should use it to gloss propose to someone, as we currently do: aside from its ambiguity, I find the expression grammatically baffling. We should go for something simpler and unambiguous, such as "to ask someone if they want to become one's spouse", "to ask someone to get married to you" (Macmillan), or something like that.

(By the way, the same ambiguity applies to demander en mariage, imo, and I will have to look into it.)

PUC – 12:28, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]

  • Too long. You can simply ask for her hand. I think a definition at hand is sufficient, or the existing usage note there. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 12:37, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
    What is too long? The entry title, or my post? If you read it you might learn something. PUC – 12:39, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
    The entry title. One can also seek her hand. The symbolic hand is all that matters. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 12:59, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
    Sorry for my caustic reply. Mh... It wouldn't be desirable to create entries for all the possible collocations, but the entry for hand seems lacking to me, especially as we currently don't even have a sense for this - only the usage note you've pointed me to. Also, I think having a separate entry would be more convenient for gathering translations into other languages. And as I said, I find the turn "ask for someone's hand in marriage" a bit baffling from a grammatical standpoint (we don't say this in French, we only say demander la main de quelqu'un or demander quelqu'un en mariage). PUC – 13:43, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
    Usage examples under the appropriate sense of hand#Noun would seem a good way to include these. The same approach would apply to many other SoP expressions. DCDuring (talk) 20:09, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[]
    @DCDuring: Though I currently don't see an appropriate sense at hand, if someone adds it I could live with all the relevant information being moved/added there and with seeing the entry I've created being RFD'ed. But aside from that, what's your take on the rest of my initial post? Do you agree that the quotations I've linked to point to two different senses ("ask someone for the permission to marry someone else" vs. "ask someone if they want to marry one"), and that in light of this ambiguity it would be a good idea to change the gloss at propose? PUC – 06:26, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]
    I'm not entirely sure. It is clear whose hand it has been traditionally: a prospective female spouse. The identity of the person being asked is the same as the person who owns the hand. In days of yore, especially for a young woman, it would be a male head of the family. More recently, the owner is the person whose nervous system (typically) controls the (literal) hand, still typically, but not necessarily, female. If one takes a sufficiently general approach one can include everything under hand#Noun, but the definition is likely to be quite stilted, as in sentences 2-4 above.
    To avoid such stilted wording, I suppose that we could have meaningful entries at hand#Noun, ask for someone's hand, and ask someone for their hand. I think including in marriage in the headwords makes the expression too close to transparent (ie, SoP), though perhaps we could have them as redirects to the corresponding entries. I would also use the word "typical(ly)" if words like "father", "female", and "young" are used in the definition to allow for all the other possibilities without making the definition too abstract or cumbersome.
    I don't think OneLook dictionaries have entries for the longer expressions. MWOnline has a definition (one of nearly 30 at hand):
    "a pledge especially of betrothal or bestowal in marriage"
    He asked for her hand in marriage.
    That seems to me to handle it adequately, but others may not think so. We could redirect all of these proposed multi-word headwords to the appropriate sense of hand using {{senseid}}. HTH. DCDuring (talk) 17:42, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

decryptify, decryptificationEdit

We just define these as decryption, but they seem to be used only in reference to genetics, based on a Google Books search. Equinox 06:26, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

work or -workEdit

e.g. metalwork has the etymology given as a compound, but has been manually added to the "suffixed with -work" category. And what about copperwork, bonework, goldwork and so on? Equinox 07:13, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Why not simply replace {{compound|en|metal|work}}  by  {{suffix|en|metal|work}}?  --Lambiam 17:15, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

By my faith!Edit

Sense 4 of faith is defined as, “An obligation of loyalty or fidelity and the observance of such an obligation.” We see this sense in the first component of faithful and in the expressions good faith and bad faith. Does this sense survive to this day by itself, other than in these set phrases? If not, I think it should be marked obsolete or archaic.  --Lambiam 09:04, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

paternal auntEdit

We keep having edit wars with IPs because the wording is confusing:

  1. the sister or sister-in-law of one's father

The most obvious "sister-in-law of one's father" is one's mother's sister- a maternal aunt. The legitimate one for this entry is one's father's brother's wife. We need to make the distinction clearer. Chuck Entz (talk) 13:15, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Turkish uses different terms for these two senses, so I recommend giving each their own definition:
  1. A sister of someone’s father.
  2. The wife of a sibling of someone’s father.
(Note the substitution of “someone’s” for “one’s”, as this is not reflexive, and the LGBTQI+-friendly use of “sibling” instead of “brother”.)  --Lambiam 17:09, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

twin (verb)Edit

I just added two senses: (A) "(transitive) To be, or be like, a twin to (someone else); to match in some way." and (B) "(intransitive) To be, or be like, a pair of twins (for example, to dress identically)." B was an expansion of a sense which had been present, "(intransitive) To be paired or suited". B also seems to be just A with "each other" omitted; this means it technically is intransitive, but if someone wants to think of a way of combining them, that could work. But I have questions about the last sense in the section:

  • (C) (intransitive, obsolete) To be born at the same birth.
    • c. 1605–1608, William Shakespeare, “The Life of Tymon of Athens”, [...], [Act I, scene iii]:
      Twinn'd brothers of one womb

Does C exist separate from B? I'm having a hard time telling, because the cite doesn't look like a intransitive verb in the first place, it looks transitive (or possibly adjectival). The definition (not the cite) seems like it's the same thing as B, the most literal way of being a pair of twins (unlike the now-common loose use for if you're just wearing the same outfit as someone). - -sche (discuss) 20:18, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[]

It appears to me that (C) is a use of the adjective twinned, seen here in a modern text, so perhaps not quite obsolete.  --Lambiam 13:08, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I've folded C into B and moved the Shakespeare citation to twinned. - -sche (discuss) 02:16, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Johnny on the spot: not dated?Edit

It has a dated label, I'm not sure I'd confer with this. I did notice Oxford dict also had the same label but I hear the phrase quite often —⁠This unsigned comment was added by (talk) at 02:46, 28 September 2021 (UTC).[]

I think we can only consult a broad base of opinion about whether something is "dated". The opinions of both the old and the young would have to be discounted: of the young because they often do not yet have sufficient breadth of exposure and humility; of the old because they often fail to notice that some of their expressions have fallen into disuse by younger speakers. DCDuring (talk) 15:51, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
In this case it would be interesting to see whether the term is much used in media more frequented by the young. I suspect it is not. DCDuring (talk) 15:53, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]

conservative estimateEdit

Right now def 3 of conservative is "based on pessimistic assumptions" and gives "conservative estimate" as a usex, but this ought to be wrong - we can have a "conservative estimate" on the number of deaths caused by some event and that is not the worst case (on the high end), but rather on the low end. — surjection??⟩ 12:18, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Indeed. “A conservative estimate of the cost that would have been incurred”[25] is an optimistic estimate. I think this sense is only used for expectations, such as estimates and predictions.[26][27][28] The sense is basically the same as sense 1, “cautious”, applied to expectations, which is similar to “moderate”, “restrained”.  --Lambiam 13:28, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
(edit conflict) The usex of def 3 actually illustrates def 1 "cautious", i.e. only based on assumptions with a high level of certainty, and not including bold and less certain assumptions. "Based on pessimistic assumptions" is wrong, or rather only applies to positive predictions. Conservative estimates about the extent of global warming, inflation rates, mortality, etc. are less "pessimistic" than bolder claims that include controversial worst case scenarios. –Austronesier (talk) 13:30, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
In argumentation, a "conservative" estimate is one that is claimed to be relatively favorable to the opposing point of view. I don't think that is in any of the definitions we have. Could that be the intent of definition 3? DCDuring (talk) 15:40, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
But this is again one of the nuances which is meant by "cautious". "Conservative" only means "cautious" (and similar things mentioned above) in connection with "estimate" and similar terms. We don't say 'Be conservative when you cross the street!' or 'Be conservative when talking to a mob that is willing to kill because of heated rhetoric!'. –Austronesier (talk) 15:52, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't see how "this is again one of the nuances which is meant by "cautious"", unless one is stretching the meaning of cautious a great deal.
Most words have somewhat different (sometimes very different, even opposing) meanings according to the words they used with or the situations/contexts in which they are used. I don't see the point of your comment for the matter under discussion. DCDuring (talk) 16:05, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
The point: merge def 1 & 3, specify context (as done by Lexico, def 3 or MW, def 2b). –Austronesier (talk) 16:11, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
OK, but I still don't see how def. 2 or any normal definition of cautious or moderate includes the use in argumentation. DCDuring (talk) 16:31, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Also, that discussion belongs in RfD or RfM. DCDuring (talk) 17:30, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]


There is a fairly rare use of this word in the industry not for a tool in the common sense but for molds, models and other intermediary products that are worked to produce or vice-versa produced to work with? See for the Job definition of "Werkzeugmechaniker" at [example https://berufenet.arbeitsagentur.de/berufenet/faces/index?path=null/kurzbeschreibung&dkz=29051&such=Werkzeugmechaniker%2Fin BerufeNET], where it contrasts with Werkstück.

I fail to find a suitable translation, but I have not found a synonym in google to specify the search, though BerufeNET helpfully defines Vorrichtung.

This is well mirrored by tool in software, where you might use a tool to bring text into a legible form, but maybe use an application to view it, while there is no hard and fast distinction.

Is this covered by tool? ApisAzuli (talk) 20:24, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]

The definition given by BerufeNET is strangely specific and limited. The Duden defines the term as jemand, der Werkzeuge, Vorrichtungen, Lehren o. Ä. fertigt, montiert, überprüft, wartet und repariert (someone who manufactures, assembles, checks, maintains and repairs tools, devices, gauges, etc.). I doubt that the range is essentially different from that of jobs as a tool mechanic.[29][30][31]  --Lambiam 22:56, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
@Lambiam: That's just my point, it is oddly specific jargon on account of the contrast with Werkstück which is not available from the generic definition.
Two of the three links talk about repairing machinery, electrics, etc. The other one [bmwgroup.jobs] fits the bill but the background suggest a denglisch translation (not to say mistranslation) and rather supports my lacking a good translation.
The Duden definition may be economical in glossing over minor details, but if you want to go down that road you might as well call Werkzeug a Sum of Parts on account of the most general definitions under Werk and Zeug (stuff). However, the Werkzeugbauer I know reportedly needs to explain it usually.
The given contrast basicly implies that it's diametrical opposed (like negative in modeling) or orthogonal to the generic definition of tool where it concerns the end-user. Another point is that the tools of a handy man may also go as Rüstzeug according to de.WP and in my own experience.
That said, if the finished product could be another Werkzeug, for lack of a better word, it would be a paradox to me. Not sure how that's resolved in practice. ApisAzuli (talk) 08:10, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
If that is just your point, I have failed and still fail to understand it, something I must confess pertains to many of your contributions. I do not see a paradox. Tools are made using tools, and a machine shop can produce machines. One day self-replicating machines will be commonplace if humanity does not succeed in extinguishing itself before then. In English, the term tool can refer in a narrow sense to a piece of hardware equipment, such as a screwdriver or a wrench, but also more broadly, and not only in connection with software, to anything that is used as a means to achieve an aim. I think this holds equally for German Werkzeug: “Rumkowski war nur ein Werkzeug in den Händen der Henker”;[32] “meine Werkzeuge sind meine Finger”.[33] If an intermediary product itself is referred to as a Werkzeug (I’d need to see citations, something like “wir verwenden diese Gussform als Werkzeug, um die Stecker herzustellen”), then surely it is a use of the broad sense.  --Lambiam 09:50, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

snakey? serpenty?Edit

Is there an English equivalent to the Spanish heraldry term gringolado? It means "containing snake heads" Roger the Rodger (talk) 22:17, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]

snakeheaded ? ending in a snake's head ? Leasnam (talk) 22:59, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Normally, X-ed can mean “carrying Xes”, but I’d interpret snakeheaded as “having a head like that of a snake” (“the woman will give birth to a snakeheaded monster”[34]). The escutcheon of Erec, one of the Knights of the Round Table, was said to have been charged with three snake heads.  --Lambiam 23:22, 28 September 2021 (UTC)[]


The wording in the definition seems needlessly loaded: “A pseudoscientific nationalist movement that proclaims ethnic and cultural unity for disparate people supposed to have a common ancestral origin in Central Asia, using the Iranian term Turan as the designation for this place.”

I know Turanism and the Turanian language family are BS but we can do better than rubbing it in our readers’ face like this. Also the information in the second half could be moved to the etymology. Thoughts? — Ungoliant (falai) 00:35, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

That reflects a popularity bias in public discourse and Wikipedia. Pages like Pan-Slavism do not look like that.
The trueness of views of nations subsumed under common denominations to facts may of course highly vary, and they vary highly whether in whether they are ethical (just demands more than being blind to disparateness), ontological (actually positing certain relations in controversial manners) or methodological (thought experiments), or just memes, like ethical solipsism, metaphysical solipsism, methodological solipsism, and Stirnerposting on the internet.
So that confused wording was of course as bluepilled as can be, and everyone who took the Turanpill was not as bad a thinker as the one one needed to produce that definition.
I have rewritten it, well-known for being skilled in unloaded and uninflammatory phrasing. Fay Freak (talk) 01:18, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Pan-Slavism was a purely political movement, not relying on bogus tenets. In contrast, Turanists may hold that such disparate groups as the Finnish, Japanese and Turkish peoples are ethnically and linguistically related.  --Lambiam 10:15, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Yeah, because the people Turanists claim are ethnically and linguistically related are not generally accepted to be related, the use of supposed in the definition was appropriate (I restored it). (As for the other bolded words: the movement is known for pseudoscientific claims, but whether we actually need to spell that out in a dictionary definition, meh.) - -sche (discuss) 20:16, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
No, because commonality does not imply relation. So you can lay emphasis on it even if it is of diverse causation. Like in universal grammar, I don’t if that is claimed to be caused by “relation” – relatedness is not even relevant at some point. Necessarily one finds some commonality and there is no point to deny it, so it is not completely “supposed” either. Fay Freak (talk) 22:03, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Image for "girdle"Edit

Currently, this image is located at our entry for girdle, presumably for the sense "A belt or elasticated corset; especially, a belt, sash, or article of dress encircling the body usually at the waist, often used to support stockings or hosiery." Does anyone recgonize the object in the photo as a girdle? If so, I think we're missing a sense that refers to the lower garment featured in this photo, which is what I'm more familiar with. —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 02:42, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

@The Editor's Apprentice, the definition probably needs to be split, I think. This word can mean a belt (that may or may not be underwear), or a kind of underwear that doesn't necessarily look like a belt (as in the 2nd photo). --Frigoris (talk) 07:59, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Wikipedia has separate articles for Girdle (“a belt ... worn as part of Christian liturgical vestments, or in certain historical, literary or sports contexts”) and Girdle (undergarment) (“a form-fitting foundation garment ... worn often to shape or for support”). The object in the picture is neither, but it does fit the meaning of cognate German Gürtel, a not entirely true friend.  --Lambiam 13:43, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Alright. Based on y'all's responses and my own understanding I have modified the entry. Let me know if you have any feedback. —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 22:13, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]


If you click on the quotes you will find an audio box without any audio. You can find the audio by clicking on (archived from) "the original", but this is by no means clear. Is there any good way of indicating this, like a note? DonnanZ (talk) 17:44, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

This seems to be an issue with the interaction between the quotation collapser and {{audio}}. If you load the page with quotations displayed, the button appears normal. — Ungoliant (falai) 21:17, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
I got it to work in the end, thanks. DonnanZ (talk) 22:38, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

hey all, is this a clipping of y'allEdit

"All" in vocatives like "hey all, just a quick note..." is listed as a clipping of y'all. I think this is in error; I think it occurs even in dialects that don't use y'all, and I would not have thought it derived from y'all. It seems like an extension of the sense "everyone", and it can indeed be replaced by "everyone" ("hey everyone, just a quick note..."). Should it be merged into the sense "# Everyone." (because vocative use does not seem particularly "special" and many other words can be used vocatively, like "hey folks, just a quick note", "hey guys,...", "hey Wiktionary community,...", etc)? Or should it be kept as a separate "# Used as a vocative." sense (but dropping the claim that it's from y'all)? Or would anyone like to defend it really being a clipping of y'all? - -sche (discuss) 20:10, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]

I'm sure it's not from "y'all". (Is "hello all" from "wall"?) Equinox 20:16, 29 September 2021 (UTC)[]
Ok, I've removed it (moving the citation under the "everyone" sense). - -sche (discuss) 14:34, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]

Obsolete meanings of Edit

What exacted does read & mean in s:zh:重修吳季子廟記 and s:zh:命皇太子即位制, or are these errors? I also found s:ko:페이지:医學語彙(假題).djvu/7, where 氕 means 氣. Crowley666 (talk) 12:22, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]

@Crowley666, If you see something suspicious in classical texts over at zh-wikisource, it's most likely an error (bad OCR, electronic text of questionable provenance, mass Hans->Hant transformation out of context, etc.). The case with the last link is much more convincing because at least we have a manuscript. --Frigoris (talk) 08:24, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Frigoris, yes, they were copied from ctext.org by Liangent-bot. I've fixed the first one. Anyway, 氕 is used as 氣 multiple times in 医學語彙(假題), but I can't find it elsewhere. I have to find a Chinese source to put it in the Chinese section. Crowley666 (talk) 14:15, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Crowley666, is that book a Sino-Korean glossary book? If so, you can definitely base any Chinese entry content on its Chinese part, if that meets the CFI. The reason you can't find it elsewhere is that the form is almost certainly a scribe's own hand. The CHISE somehow links the form to the Shuowen though, without explanation. --Frigoris (talk) 15:30, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]
ayy s:ko:의학어휘 is my transcription project. 医學語彙 occasionally has Japanese glosses. Google web searches for some of the hanja terms (運傷寒, 二日瘧) return mostly Korean pages. The author is unknown. 氕 also appears in s:ja:日鮮日常會話. —Suzukaze-c (talk) 05:00, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Definition is pretty lame as right feeling. Meh Roger the Rodger (talk) 14:59, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[]


This word also means "willing" right? ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:47, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]

October 2021

jack and blue boyEdit

According to the lyrics to Cockney Translation by Smiley Culture (1984), Cockneys say ‘Jack’s’ for what Jamaicans would call ‘a Blue Boy’, genius.com says that ‘Jack’s’ is cockney for £5 (sterling) and ‘a Blue Boy’ is Jamaican slang for J£5 [35] which is consistent with ‘Jack’s alive’ and ‘Jackson Five’ being rhyming slang for a fiver according to the Cockney rhyming slang dictionary [36] but as Jamaica went from pounds to dollars in 1969 and changed from a five dollar note to a five dollar coin in 1994, perhaps the actual truth is that ‘a Blue Boy’ was slang for five Jamaican dollars at some point between these two dates, including 1984? Any thoughts on this or further evidence for it? Overlordnat1 (talk) 22:03, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Portuguese man-of-warEdit

The Alternative forms section is a mass of redlinks to a number of minor variations in capitalization, hyphenation and presence or absence of apostrophes. Do we really need all of that? Chuck Entz (talk) 01:19, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I don't see why not, but it should be collapsed and put after the definitions. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 03:50, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
As long as they are attested, it's fine (WT:EL, WT:CFI). --Myrelia (talk) 11:21, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Meh... some seem unlikely to be standard ("Man-O'War"?), and should be labelled if they're rare, uncommon, etc, but I wouldn't bother to remove such links if someone has added them, though I agree with Andrew that they should be collapsed and/or moved below the definitions. I do think it's useful to link to all alt forms (and all inflected forms of verbs, etc), for findability and because linking increases the odds that someone will notice if multiple spellings are hosting (potentially out-of-sync) definitions. Sometimes people do just put a note like "any of these, but with 'X' capitalized", though, like someone put on idle hands are the devil's workshop, or like I put on devil's beating his wife, rather than repeat the entire list of alt forms But Capitalized Differently This Time. - -sche (discuss) 12:07, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I would call any uncommon ones rare misspellings, not to be included. Or compare them to the randomly capitalized nouns in older English writing, which we also don't include even if a Noun was written that way three times. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 13:59, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I reduced the alternative forms to those differing in letters and apostrophe. A search of any of the former alternate forms should end up in the right place. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 19:24, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Which of the 25 noun definitions of float is this entry using? Not like a رَمَث(ramaṯ)? I needed to go via two links to the German Wikipedia to understand what the talk is about, where under “Aufbau des Tieres” they directly tell us what is structurally remarkable with the animal. The “large, gas-filled structure” English Wikipedia mentions under “Anatomy and physiology” could only strengthen the notion that lifeboats are meant. Fay Freak (talk) 20:59, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I must also confess to being confused about what ‘float’ means in this context. English Wikipedia seems to refer to this float as a pneumatophore[37] but on searching for pneumatophore in Wikipedia, I was redirected to another article where ‘pneumatophore’ is used with a different meaning [38]. Lexico, the free dictionary and Merriam Webster define a float as being the gas-filled sac, bag or body of a siphonophore (of which the man-of-war is the most well-known example) though, which is hinted at in our siphonophore entry.Overlordnat1 (talk) 09:13, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I’ve just added a new definition for float to account for this usage. Overlordnat1 (talk) 09:28, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Does anyone pronounce TEFL as /tiː.iː.ɛf.ɛl/ or is it always /ˈtɛf(ə)l/? I'm not familiar with this initialism. — SGconlaw (talk) 12:25, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I’ve heard/said it as /ˈtɛf(ə)l/, I don’t think I’ve ever heard /tiː.iː.ɛf.ɛl/ but then it’s not a word I say or hear an awful lot, so the other way may be possible I suppose. Overlordnat1 (talk) 14:02, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I found some YouTube videos where it is pronounced /ˈtɛf(ə)l/, but am wondering if that is the only way it is pronounced. — SGconlaw (talk) 14:06, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
In any case, it’s better not to do guesswork. ·~ dictátor·mundꟾ 17:13, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
We should certainly minimise the amount of guesswork that we do but unless we ask all 7 billion or so people on Earth how they say the word, we can’t be sure no one says /tiː.iː.ɛf.ɛl/. I think there’s only one pronunciation, as with AWOL; not two, as with ASAP. Overlordnat1 (talk) 22:18, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I was always under the impression that it was pronounced /ˈtif(ə)l/, which means I must have heard someone pronounce it that way sometime over the last several decades. I doubt that I've heard it more than once, and I certainly have never used it myself. Chuck Entz (talk) 23:56, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Personally always heard /ˈtɛf(ə)l/, though I haven't heard it enormously often. Equinox 21:19, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I regularly heard it pronounced both ways when I was in the business R∴W∴Bro∴ Froggo Zijgeb 18° (talk) 00:15, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

English cheroot pronunciationEdit

I have edited it. I am surprised that the common pronunciation with /ʃ/ was missing, and instead the one with /t͡ʃ/ was given. I am not at all sure if the latter is still valid, but based on evidence from the loanwords in Indian languages, it looks as though that is the older pronunciation. And I see Merriam-Webster lists both pronunciations. More input? ·~ dictátor·mundꟾ 17:06, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]

The old Century Dictionary notates the pronunciation as she-rötˈ, which means the first syllable is the same as chenille or shebeen, and the second syllable is root. (If /tʃ-/ had been the main pronunciation in the past, I'd've expected them to list it.) On the other hand, searching YouTube, I find several cigar reviewers, all of whom say /tʃ-/: this review (0:08) says /tʃəˈɹuːt/ (same reviewer, 0:20), this one (0:17, 0:33, 0:38) says /tʃ-/ but with a more ambiguous vowel, and this one (1:57) outright says "chair roots" as does this reviewer (0:21, "chair oots"). (In this video, around 1:00, someone in Myanmar seems likee they might be saying it with /tʃ-/ as well.) - -sche (discuss) 22:34, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
It looks like a case of the historically-correct spelling losing out to a spelling pronunciation as the word fell from common use and people were more likely to first encounter the word without hearing it pronounced. If you didn't know it was pronounced with /ʃ/, the obvious guess would be /tʃ/. After all, the only common source of /ʃ/ spelled as "ch" is unadapted French loanwords, and "-oot" doesn't look anything like French. Chuck Entz (talk) 02:15, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I suppose if the people who use and review the product pronounce it "chair roots", that is a pronunciation, hah.
I did finally find a reviewer who says /ʃəˈɹuːt/, at 6:44. (What I've linked is all I've found.) - -sche (discuss) 20:18, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[]


I can't seem to find this word in Merriam-Webster's, Cambridge's or in Oxford's. Does it even exist? —⁠This unsigned comment was added by (talk).

By our standards, yes, it does, though it's far from common. I can find one use on Google Books dating to 1918, though most examples are from the last 50 years or so. It's even in the US Federal Communications Commission's section of the Code of Federal Regulations. Chuck Entz (talk) 19:34, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Is our definition right? I'd have expected "One who is shared" or "that which is shared". I suppose that it comes from a dynamic sense of share ("give a partial interest in"), whereas my expectation is that comes from a more stative sense. DCDuring (talk) 20:07, 2 October 2021 (UTC)[]

whatever etymologyEdit

Is it right: what + -ever? We have no such suffix entry. Equinox 03:44, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Not that I am aware of. I have fixed it for the time being. Leasnam (talk) 07:44, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Well, it should be notable if ever was ever reanalysed as suffix and generalized about wh-words. This is rather likely. That would better belong in the ES, but I don't expect clarity beyond the uncertain etymology we alread have. If the e- is cognate with aye and je, etc. Grimm has a lot to say about the impossibility of distinguishing it from ja, which is littered all over the place in colloquialisms, not to mention that je- combines variously, similar to al- and any-. Thus it seems likely that different phrases were common and fosilized on occasion, as German comparisons offer at least three options other than feorh.
  • The later internal comparison to any- is of interest because, for one, expressions to the effect of any are quite versatile with quisquis or xejn for example. I'd argue that Ger. ein jeder (Mann) was a reinterpretation of *ei(n)j-eder from the hey-days of articelization, therefore maintaining the original semivowel of *Hey-, thus the surface anlysis a(n)- be in part accounted for by homonymy that is also apparent in the paradoxical meanings of any per-se (far away from Ger. einig), and anyhow as synonym in that sense, whatever. We also see once with a temporal semantics which is rather reminiscent of yonder, as well as the root glossed PIE "beyond" > and, or farther--which might be due to equivalent morpho-syntax, viz. -n- and comparative degrees (Ger. einst, the superlativ is not original)--while erst (first) appears related to *Hey- two. The interjection as discourse marker does work as conjunction, too. However(!), it's clear that a phrase equivalent to meh or bud'umh doesn't need much of an etymology, as it's more or less explicit nonsense, possibly a thought terminating cliche by itself.
  • I keep singing my song that the formation of was auch immer, was aber auch immer is inherently related, as is was ja (aber) sein kann. I would consider the *f in the root of aber a problem, however, that'd also count for feorh as it stands, afaics. This "aber" may itself have various roots, that shouldn't matter. I am not sure what the ending is and can't exclude coincidence. On the other hand, we derive Old English ǣċe, ēċe from the same root via *h₂oyu-gʷih₃- with an original meaning of "ever-living"; which matches "auch" sufficiently well (true cognate eke), see also sarcastic ach so (whatever, whatsoever).
  • Another reading that is half way possible could go for a verbal phrase, que sera, either with b lenited or from *wezan through a route that lenites /w/ > /v/, like Danish, or related to the uncertain etymology of are. There are two tangents: 1. The equivalent of What if? goes Was wäre wenn? or Als ob (freely translated, rather corresponding to "as if"). In the latter case, ob is akin to if, but *jabai reconstructed on account of Gothic does also mimic ja-aber, which may rather sound as **j'abą under lenition (cp. also idiomatic wenn aber "but if"). 2. was ja sein kann and Jenseits show a subjunctive aspect, if not irrealis, closer to sera << *Hs-.
  • Same as for *wezan, if unrounded /v/ < /w/ had an explanation, it might also work for the model of quisquis, ubiubi.
Over all it would be surprising, though it should not be unexpected, if it is an irregular reflex of *aiwaz*. The collocation with for should imply something as well. Nevertheless, the premise of *Hey- could be mistaken, if, just for example, possible reflexes of *-kʷe "and" are uncertain (and, incidently, involving contraction with *ain-); In fact, it's also trivially obvious that the wh-part was (also) from *-kʷe, usw., cp. etcetera, En. /eksetera/ as if *equecetra. This cannot be completely explained from the post-position. ApisAzuli (talk) 00:42, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[]

in my opinion - in one's opinionEdit

We're currently inconsistent in the way we treat these, and the translations are all over the place too. What should be done?

First, I don't think one's is correct; if we follow our usual lemmatization rules, it should be someone's. Second, I realise that most of these are used chiefly (exclusively?) in the first person (and it's often true for translations too), but is that a reason to use I / my in the entry title and end up with duplicates? I think we could lemmatize everything at someone's, redirect the I / my versions there, add a usage note when an expression is used chiefly or only in the first person, and use two translation tables: one for the one's form, and one for the I / my form.

my one's / someone's
in my opinion in one's opinion / in someone's opinion
in my book in one's book / in someone's book
to my knowledge to one's knowledge / to someone's knowledge
to the best of my knowledge (redirect) to the best of one's knowledge / to the best of someone's knowledge
as far as I know (redirect) as far as one knows / as far as someone knows
by my lights (redirect) by one's lights / by someone's lights
to my mind (redirect) to one's mind / to someone's mind
to my way of thinking (redirect) to one's way of thinking / to someone's way of thinking
in my view in one's view / in someone's view
not that I know of not that one knows of / not that someone knows of
according to my understanding according to one's understanding / according to someone's understanding

PUC – 11:42, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]

For purpose of standardisation, all of these should be redirected to the forms with one’s, because we tend to treat the form with one’s as the standard lemma, and as such someone’s is clutteringly unwieldy. ·~ dictátor·mundꟾ 11:53, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I'm not resolutely opposed to it, but that's not our usual practice: we normally use one as a placeholder for a pronoun that refers to the subject of the sentence. But in a sentence such as "John will be starting his new job next Monday, to my knowledge", my doesn't refer to John. PUC – 11:57, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Interesting, this highlights an unclarity in our guidelines, because my understanding has been different, that "one's" is used when a phrase mostly refers to the subject of the entry-worthy phrase, who may not be subject of the sentence. In "John starts his new job next Monday, which I turn up my nose at, but which he is excited about", I take it we have "turn up one's nose" because one is the person turning up the nose (me) even when this isn't the subject of the sentence (John). But WT:AEN#Phrases only directly addresses verb phrases: "in verb phrases, “one(’s)” and “oneself” are used to indicate that the referent is usually the same as the subject of the (reflexive) verb and “someone(’s)” is used to indicate that the referent is often different". I see how different people would make different assumptions about how to generalize this to verbless phrases — you take it to mean one should be subject of the overall sentence, while I take it to mean one should still be the person the (shorter) phrase we're making an entry for is about. In practice, we seem to use one's more:
- -sche (discuss) 15:26, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@-sche: Sorry for the confusion: "sentence" wasn't the right word, "clause" would have been more accurate. So let me rephrase my initial statement: we use one('s) as a placeholder when the subject of the clause and the pronoun/determiner are coreferential. That's the case with your example: in the subordinate relative clause "which I turn up my nose at", the person is turning their own nose up, not someone else's. It indeed makes no matter that the subject of the main clause (that is of the sentence, you might say) is different.
What I'm bothered by are examples such as "John will be starting his new job next Monday, to my knowledge". "to my knowledge" isn't a clause in itself, is it? It's simply a phrase that's part of the main clause, imo (or is it a sentence adverb?); that means that the subject of that clause and the pronoun/determiner of that phrase aren't coreferential, and that consequently we should use someone('s), not one('s).
Maybe that's my mistake, though: perhaps I shouldn't work at the level of clauses, but of phrases, as you do? But if one does this, it only makes sense to draw a distinction between someone('s) and one('s) when there are several arguments, which may or may not be coreferential (otherwise the distinction loses its meaning): that's the case with turn up one's nose, where there are two arguments (the subject of the verb, and the determiner of nose); but not with in one's opinion, where there's only one argument (the determiner of opinion).
I don't know if I'm making sense? PUC – 17:29, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I would generally prefer that someone's be used rather than one's. But I believe it to be true that most (all?) of the expressions in PUC's list are much more commonly used with my. In all(?) uses the idea is to express epistemic uncertainty or qualification. But when I use it with my (or our), it is "polite", whereas using it with you verges on rude. I suppose all this could be handled with usage notes at the "someone's" entries. And most of the entries should contain the my version of the expression in usage examples. DCDuring (talk) 20:56, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@PUC: Yeah, I'm not entirely sure what's right or best here. FWIW, at OneLook, no dictionary has "to someone's knowledge" or "in someone's book", but both Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com (as run-in entries under "knowledge" and "book") join us in having "to one's knowledge" and "in one's book". (For comparison, no dictionary has "in one's shoes", but Dictionary.com joins us in having "in someone's shoes".) - -sche (discuss) 21:29, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Is there any difference between dowel and wall plug? Wikipedia treats them as different things and here we understand them as more or less synonymous. Hromi duabh (talk) 13:41, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]

A dowel is a generic material. The non-electrical UK sense of wall plug might typically use a dowel. Dowels are or, at least, have been commonly used in furniture joinery. DCDuring (talk) 21:36, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
The construction sense at dowel is also more general than wall plug. One could have a dowel in that sense in, for example, a metal or other column or masonry not part of a wall. DCDuring (talk) 21:42, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I have been involved as an engineer in the UK building industry for 50 years, and have never heard anyone using wall plug or dowel in any way that one could be mistaken for the other (although I was not a carpenter or joiner, so there might be some usage I missed).
In the usage I have heard, dowel has always meant a (relatively) small solid cylindrical object (min approx 10 mm dia) which is used (in the construction industry) to strengthen a joint between pieces of wood ranging in size between (in previous eras) large baulks forming major columns, beams, etc, down to small items of furniture. In the engineering industry it refers to a (relatively) small solid cylindrical object which sits in holes drilled into two pieces of metal, to locate them exactly when they are fitted together, since the bolts used to hold them together would otherwise allow some sideways movement leaving them not fully aligned. For example, most cylinder heads are dowelled to the cylinder blocks. The WP article appears to say much the same. Actually, there is one other use which it misses. w:John Smeaton, who had to reinvent mortar that would set underwater, also located the huge stone blocks from which he built the first robust modern lighthouse (Eddystone lighthouse) with marble dowels, so that breaking waves would not slowly displace them.
None of these uses could really be attributed to wall plugs, which traditionally were for fastening items to brick walls, but also to stone and concrete. I can't remember how the Romans did that, but after they left the UK, there were centuries where such construction was very rare. Once bricks came back into widespread use, the Georgians, Victorians and whoever else used them, would chisel out recesses in the soft lime mortar they used, and hammer in slightly-wedge-shaped plugs, split off from planks of wood, and often of cross-section about 25 x 12 mm, into which nails, or occasionally screws, could be driven. Hand-held electric drills only came into common use in the 1930s, so a "plugging chisel" was used to cut into the soft mortar. Then, an electrical contractor by the name of Rawlings realised that time could be saved by using what he called a "Rawldrill", effectively a small circular chisel, to hammer out a small diameter hole and tap in a "Rawlplug", a small (say 5 mm) diameter plug made of fibre with a small hole down the middle, and then screw a screw into it, which would expand it into the surrounding brick and provide a good fixing, without the need to replaster round a big plug hole. This was the only time when a wall plug was remotely like a dowel, but differed by being a smaller diameter, having a hole down the middle, and being for a different purpose.
After WWI there was a labour shortage, due to the millions killed in the war and the further millions killed by the Spanish flu coronavirus. Mr Rawlings' company, now called Rawlplug, was very successful due to his labour-saving inventions. And once, in the 1930s IIRC, builders started to use harder bricks and much-harder cement mortar, the old system of large plugs was no longer practicable, and his was the only alternative. Post-WW2, Black and Decker, and others, made the hand-held electric drill ubiquitous, and then added a hammer facility, which meant that Rawldrills were no longer the only means of drilling hard plaster, hard brick and hard mortar. Rawlplug started to invent or buy in improved products. They produced expanding bolts for really-heavy loads, still made today. Rawlplugs had never been wonderful in old crumbly brickwork, so they marketed a fibrous dust which, if you spat on it, you could roll between your fingers and tamp in to fill a hole. It worked really well, but unfortunately had to be taken off the market quickly in the 70s, when it became common knowledge that rubbing white asbestos between your fingers was unwise. About the same time, plastic wall plugs came into fashion, being easier to use in most situations, and ever-more-wonderful fixings were invented for drywall and other types of construction, though I'm not sure those should really be called plugs. Again, the WP article certainly corresponds to UK professional uses of the term, and I have never noticed any confusion when speaking to people outside those industries, but perhaps practice in other countries differs. --Enginear 02:08, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

galoshe and galoshEdit

Is there any reason not to merge galoshe and galosh? I'm asking because the senses recorded don't seem to match perfectly. Thanks in advanced and take care. —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 23:58, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I believe they are the same word; Dictionary.com explicitly lists galoshe and golosh as mere alternative spellings of galosh. (Webster's adds galoche as another spelling, and the meaning "clog", but this meaning may not have survived into modern English.) I've centralized the content on galosh. - -sche (discuss) 02:05, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
A related question is: is there actually a distinction in US vs UK usage or could the "US" and "UK" senses be merged? - -sche (discuss) 02:08, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks for doing the work of merging the entries. I think there is actually a distinction. The word galosh isn't in my active vocabulary, but my understanding of the term as a person who acquired English in the US is that a galosh is basically a rainboot. That means that it is the only footwear, other than say a sock, that a person has on. My understanding of what is marked as the UK sense is that it describes a second layer of footwear over another. —The Editor's Apprentice (talk) 17:11, 5 October 2021 (UTC) (edited)[]
Overshoes are (in my personal experience, anyway) uncommon in the US, but even so, when I first learned this word in the late 1970s in the central east coast area of the US, I learned it as meaning "waterproof overshoe". I later learned the "rainboot" sense. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 16:13, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Yes, the only person I ever knew to have galoshes was my dad (UK, but had lived a year in the US), and they were water-resistant overshoes. The only similarity between them and his Wellington rainboots was that they were both made of rubber. --Enginear 02:28, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Kost und LogisEdit

What is the gender of "freie" in "freie Kost und Logis"? --Espoo (talk) 06:25, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Feminine, from Kost f. – Jberkel 07:58, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
It's not clear what you are asking because, surel, you have checked Kost before the post.
I don't think it has been shown that the etymology of the phrase was certain enough to allow the given inference. The context very much implies coinage in the language contact situation that the word itself came to be, where its gender was ambiguous. One can point to freie Kost und Logie (sic!) but this is not unambiguous. Basicly, set noun phrases like this have no gender marker. Even though prescriptivist language puritans will insist that Rohkost is feminine that's not the case when elliptic from Rohkost-Salat, as the adverbial attribute carries no gender.
After careful considerstion, regardless of historical evidence, I conclude it was akin to continental breakfast (metathesis after second consonant shift; besides the loss of s in one Latin word derived from sto) or costa (cf. fr.WP "A small stand or tray", see analoguous boarding school with board as "table or tray" supoosedly suggesting "meal", but not "bread") or stable, akin to constable (because your horses need lodging and a batman, or chamberlain, cp. Küster, from custos), or canister (loss of intervocalic n seems more likely than not; in that case either a can, viz. toilet, or something made of reeds) or all of the above. Although two Latin etyma spell costa and suggest female gender, their etymologies do not instill any confidence. Finally, the German forms in kiesen, küren would go well with frei (free + choice), to say the least, see also buffet or à la carte.
If you know more about that, please add to the discussion. ApisAzuli (talk) 16:36, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[]


I have three questions about this alien[1] word:

  • Is it possible to add an English translation, such as 'to put in alphabetical order'?
  • Does it encompass putting Thai words[2] or Chinese characters[3] in alphabetical order?
  • Would it encompass phonetically aware sorting orders, e.g. to put Llanberis before Llangollen (which does not contain the letter 'ng', so both are 8-letter words) in a Welsh list of Welsh place names.

I am assuming that, unlike Frenchmen, Quebeckers can consistently alphabetize sets of French words. --RichardW57m (talk) 13:55, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]


  1. ^ The questioner is British.
  2. ^ Thai words need some minor reordering of their letters (sensu lato) before one can use a lexicographic sort
  3. ^ Chinese characters can be sorted by radical and then stroke count.

norther defined as "south wind"Edit

Are we sure that sense exists? The only citation is a mention which expresses confusion at it, and that confusion could well have to do with how a word like "northerly", used to describe most things, would mean "going north" ("a northerly voyage from Rome to Berlin"), but when describing wind means "going south, from the north". (I.e., the citation may not actually be claiming "norther" means [[south wind]], it may just be claiming it means a [[wind]] that's blowing towards the [[south]], which is sense 1, "north wind".). Is the sense just a misunderstanding / error? If not, do similarly contranymic senses exist for easter, wester, souther? - -sche (discuss) 18:28, 5 October 2021 (UTC) edited - -sche (discuss) 04:03, 6 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Definitely confusion. Rather than defining them as merely "north wind", etc, we should specify which direction they blow in. Every mariner knows that you name a wind based on where it comes from, and a current based on where it goes — but most people don't! —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:00, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I clarified the definitions of norther, souther, easter and wester. (I RFVed the "south wind" sense.) Another issue: the verb senses of souther etc ("to move toward the south") need to be clarified: if a wind southers, does that mean its source moves toward the south (blowing north), or it moves the wind itself (the air) towards the south (i.e. it blows from the north)? Whereas, if a wind southers your course, is it moving you towards the south? It's not clear from the present wording, which probably needs to be split based on transitivity, if not also based on the wind-vs-current distinction. - -sche (discuss) 15:05, 6 October 2021 (UTC)[]
It would be difficult for a storm system containing winds blowing northward to be simultaneously moving southward. I guess I wouldnt write it off completely, but I'd think it'd be if anything confined to rapidly rotating storms, whose winds wouldnt be moving in a single compass direction, but rather in all of them at once. Soap 22:05, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Hm? I'm not asking about a storm moving one way or winds another, I'm asking which one it is: if wind southers, which we define as "move toward the south", does the source of the wind move towards the south (so that the wind is blowing from the south, towards the north)? or does the wind (and e.g. a leaf carried aloft in it) move, that is to say blow or transport air, towards the south (i.e. blow from the north)? If the wind southers a ship's voyage, does that mean it pushes the ship further south? (Is the verb thus as contranymic as the adjective? In that case it needs to be split.) - -sche (discuss) 05:14, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I may have misunderstood .... do you mean that the wind would rotate instead? So that a west wind becomes a south wind? That could happen, but I think it's still rare enough that i've never heard that term used in meteorology before .... if the a wind direction is changing there's almost certainly something else going on too that would make the change of wind direction just a secondary detail. Even so, you have a point .... I guess Im just being picky about details here, because it's certainly possible for the wind to blow from the north one minute, and from the south the next .... it just wouldnt be the same airmass that you were feeling. From a layman's perspective, I can see how one would say that the wind has changed, as if it were all coming from a single source. But, that said, you wouldnt find a term like that in a weather report since its technically incorrect. I hope this helps, Soap 02:58, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Like -sche said, he's not talking about wind moving. He's wondering if "southering" means blowing something southward or from the south. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 07:55, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
old reply here Well I think this is an issue of transitivity. We have two senses at play here .... one means, from the perspective of someone on the ground, that a wind blowing from some compaass direction transitions into a wind blowing from the south, and yes I am sure that it is a progressive verb and not a static one, but i dont want to cause a distraction. The other sense is that a wind is progressively blowing something towards the south. I think this is essentially the same sense, but with the difference of transitive vs instransitive.
Put another way, if there were a verb southen, made up of south + -en, it would likely also have two meanings, one transitive and one intransitive. I would think that those two meanings would correspond perfectly well to the two meanings we have attested here in the four quotations on the page. They are 1) to move oneeslf towards the south, and 2) to move something towards the south. The only difference here is that the term is nearly always confined to talking about wind (though one of the four quotes still isnt). i hope this helps more concisely explain what i see going on here than the words i wrote above. Soap 01:01, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I found a passage that describes the wind as "southering" and also gives wind directions. I'm not great at nautical terminology, but if I understand it correctly, "southering" is applied to the change from a north of east wind to a south of east wind. That would make sense if we assume -er to be the comparative ending: a southering wind is becoming more of a south wind: blowing more from the south than it was.
A ship being "southered", then, would become more south than it was, i.e. moving toward the south. Thus, a north wind that was southering the ship would decrease the southering effect on the ship the more the wind southered, until finally the wind would be from the south and northering the ship.
By the way: when you talk about "the wind", you're not talking about different winds blowing from different directions, but rather the overall direction of air movement at a given location. In a coastal area, the daily change in relative density of the air over the sea and land caused by the greater change in temperature of the land than the sea causes the wind to blow in opposite directions at different times of the day and night. You have two different air masses pushing against each other, but you talk about "the wind" blowing onshore, then offshore- whatever the direction, it's still "the wind". Chuck Entz (talk) 05:20, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
FWIW, if you zoom out far enough on a meteorological chart, you will see that all storm systems (and also anticyclones) consist of winds blowing round in a circle as the centre of the storm moves (fairly) steadily in one general direction. --Enginear 02:44, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Adverb senses:

  1. In or to the front; in advance; onward.
    The island was directly ahead.
  2. In the direction one is facing or moving.
    Just ahead you can see the cliffs.

I am struggling to see how these usage examples demonstrate separate senses. I can see a distinction between a static sense, such as in "the island was directly ahead" and a dynamic sense, such as in "move ahead", but that doesn't properly fit what we have. Can anyone see what the intention is here?

Furthermore, the usual PoS issue arises in e.g. "the island was directly ahead" and the like. We have apparently decided not to call it a preposition, so this apparently leaves adjective or adverb, neither of which seem very satisfactory to me. Any opinions welcome. Mihia (talk) 17:31, 6 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Ex. 1. carries a temporal aspect that the sense of immediacy in the second one doesn't need. If that's dynamic I'd gloss it as before, but it does not have a head attached (pun intended) and feels like it needs an indirect object, The island was directly before / in front of (us).
In a spacial sense it might rather refer to the orientation of the direct object, eg. enemy ships in a maneuver, cp. head-on? ApisAzuli (talk) 23:08, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree that the first example may have faintly more sense of immediacy and progress than the second, but to me this seems far too hair-splitting to be a basis for separate definitions (more so even than the distinction with e.g. "move ahead"). In your last comment, are you suggesting for instance that one can say that a ship is "ahead" to mean that it is "head on"? I have never heard of such a sense. Mihia (talk) 16:50, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[]
No, that's just speculation to illustrate what I meant by "orientation". Now, comparing Kopf an Kopf (neck to neck), as in Kopf-an-Kopf-Rennen, it occured to me that ahead usually implies movement in one same direction.
Anyway, before has separate defs for temporal and spatial so I don't understand your disagreement. The examples don't really show it, but the definitions don't contradict but rather support the notion, afaict. ApisAzuli (talk) 15:58, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
ahead also has separate definitions for temporal and spatial. The temporal definitions are presently 3 through 6. I do not believe that either of the senses 1 or 2 is intended to be temporal (except in the very indirect sense that it takes time to progress from where you are now to a location "ahead"). I believe that both 1 and 2 are intended to be spatial definitions. The only sense distinction that I can think would apply here is the static/dynamic one that I mentioned at the outset, but the present entries and examples do not illustrate this clearly. For example, there is no clear distinction between "onward" and "in the direction one is moving" or between "to the front" and "in the direction one is facing". Mihia (talk) 17:37, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Re: "We have apparently decided not to call it a preposition".
Etymologically ahead, is derived from a#Preposition (To do with position or direction; In, on, at, by, towards, onto.) + head. Thus it would be a reasonable hypothesis that it would behave like an English prepositional phrase, which would mean it would sometime behave like an adjective and sometimes an adverb. It certainly doesn't behave like a preposition in the standard definition of English preposition. DCDuring (talk) 17:40, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
No, for sure it is not a traditional preposition. I think that irrespective of the specific etymology here, exactly the same issues arise when ahead is the complement of the "be" verb as do with a host of other words, such as in "she is upstairs", "he was away but now he's back", "the meeting is tomorrow", etc. IMO it is a word usage that does not fit any traditional class, though some people are happy that these are adverbs (arguing e.g. that "upstairs" has exactly the same grammar function in "she is upstairs" as in "she ran upstairs", which we presumably agree is an adverb), while others, as I understand it, want to call at least some of these cases prepositions. Mihia (talk) 17:54, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
In my very early education copulas were not modified by adverbs. So all the spatiotemporal terms that followed forms of be could only be adjectives. Now, I read of some of these advarbs being called intransitive prepositions. DCDuring (talk) 19:05, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
For me, adjective classification is a problem too. For example, would you say that the function of "outside" is the same in "an outside toilet" (adj.) and "the toilet is outside" (???). I would say no, it isn't. Mihia (talk) 19:43, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

historical present and literary presentEdit

Currently we say that the historical present is the use of the present tense:

1. when referring to real past events
2. when writing a fictional narrative

and that the literary present is present tense as used:

1. to describe events in fictional works, such as when explaining the plot of a book or film
2. to describe an action of speaking or writing that lives on through written works or record

(I just recently added the entry for literary present and also one of the senses at historical present.)

While our definitions seem consistent with many sources, there are others that use the term "historical present" in our "literary present" sense, and/or say that the two mean the same thing. For example:

"Use the present tense to describe fictional events that occur in the text: (This use of present tense is referred to as 'the historical present.')" [39]
"Most textual analysis and commentary is written in the form of the present tense called the historical present (or literary present)." [40]
Wikipedia redirects "literary present" to "historical present" and explains that "Summaries of the narratives (plots) of works of fiction are conventionally presented using the present tense" at the latter article.

Does anyone have a view as to whether we should list this as a valid sense of "historical present", or as a mistaken use, or not at all?

Generally, opinions about whether our definitions of these terms are complete and accurate are welcome, as this seems to have the potential to be a bit of a minefield. Mihia (talk) 16:52, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I would be surprised if all users maintained a distinction between HP="Use of the present tense when writing a fictional narrative" (a book saying "Alice lives in a cottage") and LP="Use of the present tense by convention to describe events in fictional works" (a review saying "in the book, Alice lives in a cottage"), especially since it seems logical to call the use of the present tense in the first instance (in literature) the literary present. However, google books:"literary present" "when writing" suggests most people really do just use it for writing reviews of fiction and not for writing original fiction. Well! If there are nonetheless references saying the present tense in fiction is also the literary present, or examples of it being used this way, that seems like a basis for a usage note; in any event it might be helpful to have a usage note in each entry explaining that the use of the present tense in fiction is HP while the use of the same present tense when saying the same things in a review of fiction is LP.
google books:"historical present" "when writing" finds people who do use historical present to refer to the present tense that's used "when writing about subjects in literature, film, and art", so perhaps it would make sense to have {{synonym of|en|literary present|the present tense, used when describing events in fictional works}} as a sense of historical present; the first two references above also seem to support this. - -sche (discuss) 20:48, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks, yes, I can certainly add the cross-uses, but I guess I am a little concerned that they may just be wrong (I'm not sure). If people are getting mixed up and using the terms incorrectly, even in published works, then we wouldn't want to perpetuate this in our definitions, or we would at least need a health warning. Mihia (talk) 08:19, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I have added some citations to [[historical present]] (def. 2). Usage examples should be illustrating the usage of the term historical present, not be providing examples of the historical present. We have {{examples}} for that. Confusingly, {{example}} redirects to {{ux}}.
Many of the grammarians, literary critics, et al. who use the terms historical present and literary present define the terms, but in ways that make it difficult to write a single definition that encompasses all and has the specifics of our definitions. It is very much as if both terms were SoP. DCDuring (talk) 18:12, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I've added a usage note and also moved the examples to examples boxes. Mihia (talk) 09:13, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[]

tastes pronunciationEdit

/teɪs/ is listed as an alternative pronunciation, but is it correct? ·~ dictátor·mundꟾ 18:39, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I'm sure it exists in some nonstandard speech (I find tas' in written in representations of old African American speech, for example), but AFAIK it's not standard so it's misleading as currently presented. (Whether it should be listed in tastes at all, vs moved to tas', is questionable.) - -sche (discuss) 19:15, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree with -sche. /teɪs/ for tastes would only be found in nonstandard speech.
I chose to be bold and removed it. If someone has a good justification for keeping it, they can say so here. Tharthan (talk) 19:19, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I'm fairly sure I've heard this often in casual speech. It's more of a general pattern with the consonant cluster /sts/ than a particularity of this word, though. Another example I've heard is /pris/ (maybe with an elongated S) for "priests". Andrew Sheedy (talk) 20:54, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]
It can definitely sound like that in fast casual speech but then words like ‘desks’ and ‘crisps’ as well as ‘tastes/priests/texts’ can display the same phenomenon and sound a bit like ‘des’ and ‘cris’ with a longer ‘s’ than normal, usually the ‘k’ and ‘p’ sound is reduced but still present though. As I don’t think it’s consistently said like that in any dialect, it may not be worth mentioning in the entry. Overlordnat1 (talk) 23:07, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[]


The usage examples under etymology 1, sense 3, seem a little odd to me. (The definition, "Used to form gerunds, a type of verbal nouns, from verbs", is also ungrammatical.) The examples are:

  • After having forged the sword, he was tired.
  • He likes eating chocolate.
  • She has a habit of sleeping late.

I'm not particularly knowledgeable about linguistics. I thought a gerund use of a verb form was when it is used like a noun, such as those under sense 1 ("The learning of Latin is necessary to be a teacher"; "I bring you glad tidings of great joy"). Could someone enlighten me? — SGconlaw (talk) 14:28, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Where a phrase such as "eating chocolate" behaves as a noun, as in the above example, it is called a gerund phrase, and I believe it is fairly standard practice to consider the "-ing" word itself a gerund, even though it has an object. Nevertheless, it would be clearer to include at least some objectless examples under sense 3. When a verb-derived "-ing" word achieves sufficient individual status as a noun, such that it no longer clearly refers solely to someone doing that action, it ceases to be a gerund IMO. This can be a blurry line, but I think e.g. "meeting" in "I attended the meeting" would be an acceptable example. However, some of the examples at sense 1, such as the "learning of Latin" example, seem poorly chosen to demonstrate any contrast with gerunds. The ety at tiding shows that it is not originally derived from a verb "tide" at all, so it seems altogether misplaced. Mihia (talk) 19:34, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[]
For Latin itself the gerunds can also take direct objects. (And they can be replaced by gerundives, the definitions at the page gerundive are odd.) In Arabic the verbal nouns can take direct objects and they have sometimes been called, and are still called, gerunds, though now other books say “gerunds do not exist in Arabic”, in the end still admitting their likeness to English gerunds. You aren't even telling us what a gerund would be in opposition to a verbal noun which is not gerund. Fay Freak (talk) 19:50, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Mihia: thanks. In the case of sense 1 ("Used to form nouns from verbs denoting the act of doing something, an action, or the embodiment of an action"), is that not a gerund as well? If so, then it seems to me that that should be pointed out. Feel free to tidy up the entry, by the way. I think you're more qualified than I am to do so. — SGconlaw (talk) 20:13, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree that sense 1 is not at the moment adequately differentiated from sense 3, either in the definition or in the examples, but I'm not 100% certain what the intended difference is or was -- whether it is along the lines of my suggestion that e.g. "meeting" is not a gerund in "I attended the meeting", or whether it is in fact something else. I wonder if anyone else might have a view on this. On another point, I must say also that I always assumed gerunds to be derived from, or even one could say uses of, the present participle, but our article has them under different etymologies. I think I'll raise that at the ety forum just to check that this is definitely correct. Mihia (talk)
See Wiktionary:Etymology_scriptorium/2021/October#-ing. Mihia (talk) 21:06, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Mihia: OK, thanks. — SGconlaw (talk) 21:57, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I dispute that "After having forged the sword, he was tired." is a gerund. (I also agree that senses 1 and 3 are not clearly distinguished at the moment, although Lexico has the very same division of senses.) - -sche (discuss) 01:53, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Why would it not be a gerund? Isn't it similar in structure and meaning to "After forging the sword", and that similar to "After the forging of the sword"? If not a gerund, it would presumably have to be a present participle, but participles are supposed to behave similarly to adjectives, and I don't think we can use adjectives after "after" (but we can use noun phrases). That said, "Having forged the sword, he went to sleep" seems a clearly participial usage, so I guess it seems a bit odd that using "after" changes the category of the word.--Urszag (talk) 03:49, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Terminology in this area is often confused at worst, or variable between sources at best, so "gerund" is not a very communicatively useful term if not explicitly defined. As you say, the basic gist of "gerund" is a verb "used like a noun". In examples like "The learning of Latin" and "glad tidings of great joy", the -ing word is often considered to be an outright noun (compare e.g "destruction"), and therefore not a gerund (in some terminological systems) because "gerund" is defined as a verb used as a noun, not a noun derived from a verb. In those terminological systems, the derived -ing noun can be called a "gerundial noun", "verbal noun", or "deverbal noun". Compare the difference between a present participle, such as "eating" in "the child eating cake", and a derived adjective with the form of a present participle, such as "exciting" in "a very exciting discovery".--Urszag (talk) 03:49, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Urszag: oh dear, if that is the case that is highly confusing. I struggle to see why learning in the example above isn’t a gerund since it is a verb (present participle of learn) used as a noun. I am asking as I found the definitions at -ing unclear, and want to be sure that I am using {{gerund of}} and stating things in etymology sections correctly. — SGconlaw (talk) 04:32, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
The issue is whether "learning" in that example is a verb, or just a noun that is related to and has the same form as a verb. For comparison, "love" is used as a noun (in phrases like "the love of money"), and it has the same form as the verb "to love", but the noun and verb typically aren't considered to be the same word. Nouns related to verbs often have some verbal properties, while lacking other properties that may be considered characteristic of actual verbs. For example, in a sentence like "Learning Latin is easy", the word "learning" can take a direct object ("Latin"): this is considered to be grammatical behavior characteristic of a verb, and "learning" in this kind of context would be called a gerund by pretty much anyone who uses the term "gerund". But when the word 'learning" is used with an article (like "the") before it, you can't put a direct object after it (you can't say *"the learning Latin")--you have to use a prepositional phrase like of Latin. (Ignoring certain rare usages.) This difference can be interpreted as evidence that these are actually two different constructions, involving two different words with the same form ("learning") but with different parts of speech (verb and noun).--Urszag (talk) 05:34, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
If sense 1 is indeed supposed to be for "outright nouns" as opposed to gerunds, I think we should delete the "learning of Latin" example as too confusing/debatable. Also we should delete the misplaced "tidings" example, and as necessary come up with replacement examples that we think very clearly are not gerunds. Also I wonder whether in fact #1 and #3 should both be subsenses of a definition along the lines of present def #1 ("Used to form nouns [...]"). I think it rather depends on the historical or etymological basis of this distinction between "outright nouns" and gerunds, which I am not knowledgeable about. I guess I could raise this at the ety section too. But if not, definition #1 definitely needs clarifying as to how it is distinct from gerund because it is presently too confusing for ordinary readers. Mihia (talk) 08:58, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Mihia: might I also suggest that we add under etymology 2 a sense indicating that the present participal of verbs are often used as adjectives (compare Lexico)? We are missing this frequently encountered sense. — SGconlaw (talk) 09:05, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Sgconlaw: The definition at ety 2 links to present participle, where the various uses of present participles, including adjectival, are explained. My feeling is that it is not necessary to repeat this information at the -ing article, and there is also already a relevant usage example. Mihia (talk) 19:37, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
A present participle cannot function as the subject or object of a verb. It has an implied subject that is usually easily identified. For example, take the sentence, It was the grace of God meeting the starving scholar.[41] The subject of the first one is the grace of God, of the second the scholar. In the phrase, learning Latin doesn't have to be arduous,[42] the subject is not Latin; here learning Latin is the subject of the sentence, and its sense is clearly “the process required to learn Latin”, a noun phrase. So this is a gerund. Although we can readily identify a candidate subject in the sentence, He is eager to draw because he likes drawing,[43] we should compare this to, perhaps he finds that he likes drawing and literature.[44] The coordination with literature, unambiguously a noun, makes clear this is a gerund, the object of likes.  --Lambiam 09:28, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Here are the three in one example: "Didn't you get the email? We're meeting in the staff room in 5 minutes. Don't miss it- the new employee will be at the meeting, and I know you like meeting new people." I'm a little unclear on examples like "the meeting of the two tunnels was an important milestone in the project." It seems like the verb is still "live" in that sense, as opposed to just being part of the etymology. Another example: "Our meeting at the meeting was a pleasant surprise- we're meeting again at lunch." Chuck Entz (talk) 14:47, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't think that I would call anything pluralisable a gerund. The word "meeting" in your "tunnels" example seems pluralisable in principle (even if actual examples may be a bit strained). Mihia (talk) 17:17, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Editors here have engaged in the view that that gerunds must be verbs and not nouns (“an outright noun […] therefore not a gerund”), but I always thought that gerunds are always nouns. So the Latin gerunds are even declined by case. With Latin and even more obviously with Arabic as the talk is of verbal nouns, you may doubt that direct objects presuppose verbs. But the truth is probably that the concepts of a verb and a noun are not mutually exclusive and there is an intersection of the sets. So we can understand Wikipedia, coming from object (grammar) to argument (linguistics), with the claim that an argument completes a predicate (grammar). German Wikipedia at least acknowledges clearly that there are different traditions for the concept of Prädikat (Grammatik). It says “Meistens dienen Verben dazu, das Prädikat des Satzes zu bilden, dies ist jedoch nicht in allen Sprachen zwingend.” (“mostly verbs are predicates of a sentence but this is not a must in all languages.”)
To bad that the dictionary is strictly organized after “parts of speech”. Fay Freak (talk) 14:30, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
An English gerund is a verb acting as a noun. Chuck Entz (talk) 15:00, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Personally I think that this is not an ideal (or complete) characterisation if (and no one has disagreed) cases such as "I like eating chocolate" are gerunds. While "eating chocolate" can be understood as a noun phrase, I don't see how "eating", which takes an object, can be seen as "acting as a noun". Mihia (talk) 17:25, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
  • I have made a first attempt at reworking this section. Anyone please feel free to make further changes that you think are needed. Mihia (talk) 17:57, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]
    @Mihia: thanks. As someone not particularly knowledgeable about linguistics, this is clearer. Do add something under etymology 2 about the use of the suffix to form adjectives as well. — SGconlaw (talk) 05:35, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
    Please see my reply about this above. Mihia (talk) 08:18, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
    I should also check if I’m using {{gerund of}} correctly – are the uses at childing and uprushing all right? — SGconlaw (talk) 05:38, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
My own feeling is that it is not necessary to trouble readers with the g-word in definitions of "-ing" words along the lines of "action/process of ~", even if these are indeed gerunds. The etymology section can give "verb + -ing", and anyone interested can look at "-ing", or if thought important enough the g-word can be mentioned in the etymology (as indeed is the case at childing). Mihia (talk) 08:30, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Mihia: it adds the entry to the category “Category:English gerunds”, though. I thought that was one of the main reasons for using {{gerund of}}. — SGconlaw (talk) 15:06, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I suppose the category can also be added manually if necessary? However, the present extreme random sparsity of that category, given that it could in principle include entries for almost every single English verb, does also rather highlight the question of when and why we would include predictable "gerund of ~" entries anyway (distinguished from "-ing" words that have attained "true noun" status). If, notwithstanding that they apparently had different origins way back, we now consider gerunds to be present participles used as nouns, as indeed present participle says, then there is arguably no need for predictable "gerund of ~" entries in addition to "present participle of ~" entries, just as arguably there is no need for separate entries for predictable "adjectival" use of present participles that have not attained "true adjective" status, saying e.g. essentially e.g. "hesitating = that hesitates", or whatever. I don't know whether we have fixed policies on these things. If not, it might be worth opening a general discussion. Mihia (talk) 15:57, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]

vasectomy and 结扎Edit

Should 結紮结扎 (jiézā) be the Chinese translation for vasectomy? It's not clear to me whether they are precisely the same. (A Chinese friend was relaying news and/or rumor about restrictions on 结扎 for men, and didn't know the English word.) Vox Sciurorum (talk) 14:42, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]

they sayEdit

This is used in a usage example of the pronoun sense 3, but this screams set phrase to me. No one ever says "they ask", "they wonder", "they exclaim" in the same sense as this. I think they say has a rather specific meaning—that is "people, in general, say", "most people say", or "(an unspecified large amount of) people say". In my experience, "they say" is usually followed by some proverb. Your thoughts? PseudoSkull (talk) 18:40, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]

In the usage example it seems run-of-the-mill, but I agree that in the example in the usage notes it has a specific meaning. Some more examples:
They say that a man who represents himself in court has a fool for a client.[45]
They say that home is where the heart is.[46]
They say that when a man is tired of London, then he is tired of life.[47]
The meaning is: “there is a saying ...”. This is distinct from the use as an unidentifiable attribution seen in “The Democrats, a lot of it had to do, they say, with Ukraine.”[48]  --Lambiam 05:15, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
It exists on a continuum from "a common saying is"-type use to more general use, and there seem to be other ways of saying it (people say, it is said; Merriam-Webster has you know what they say, "used to introduce a common saying", which should be a redirect if we add they say), but there does seem to be lemming support for it. Cambridge has they say ("to say something") with the example "they say the house is haunted" (common local belief even if not a more broadly-known proverb); Lexico has it defined as "it is rumored", "they say he's ruthless and unscrupulous" (common knowledge of those who know of the guy). Longman has they say/think ("used to state what people in general say or think") with examples ranging from "they say it's bad luck to spill salt" (common belief) to "Black children from middle-class or affluent families, they say, are more apt to adopt [Black slang]" (which seems more like "unidentifiable attribution"). - -sche (discuss) 17:04, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
On the subject of vague they: is the use of they to allude to a nebulous cabal covered by sense 3 (it does seem to exist on a continuum with non-cabal-y usexes like "they should do something about this"), or is it specific enough that it should be a separate sense? (Would that be playing into their hands, doing just what they want us to do? "That's what they want you to think." Etc.) - -sche (discuss) 17:04, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Could be. French and German would use the indefinite pronoun, as I'm sure you know, Ger. wie man so sagt, Fr. on-dit (communément que), where man is akin to, y'know, the man, the gentry establishment, the dictatorship, or the monarchy (where noble "they" is quite topical). I do not think either that anyone is consciously using it like that, nor that the origin could be traced in sufficien detail. Anatoli Liberman finds that idioms before the 13th century are unlikely, so that sense can't be too old, although there are of course sagas.
Mind, I doubt the masculinist etymology of the pronoun and the theist etymology of the noun, but that's for a different meal. ApisAzuli (talk) 15:48, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I created an entry, please revise as needed. I see so they say and you know what they say already existed as entries. - -sche (discuss) 19:14, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I don't think that these expressions are limited to the present tense as the current entries seem to imply. E.g. "They said man would never fly" or "They used to say that the Moon was made of cheese". Mihia (talk) 19:52, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
"so they said" can be past tense, too. I suppose we could add these to the headwords. (Maybe not "...used to...", since we don't give that form for verbs in general.) I couldn't find any examples of "(so) they're saying" in this sense, but I didn't search exhaustively. There is Citations:so they had said, and probably also "they had said" but sifting through the many irrelevant hits is tedious. I reclassified "so they say" from "adverb" to "phrase" to match the others and better handle the inflections. - -sche (discuss) 20:20, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I don’t think we should have these entries. One does this with any verb. E.g.: “They hate me because I told them the truth.” “They might kill you for it.” “(((They))) don’t want you to know this.” You can likewise create (((they))) and define it as “the Jews” (whoever that is). Or define “situation” as SARS-CoV-2. Note also that in Russian the 3rd person plural present form of a verb is the usual way to express “one, you, man”, the situation with other Slavic languages is similar. Just the frequency differs between languages. You can argue it is SOP because it is covered by they but I believe it is not dictionary-content for being too much an issue of grammar rather than the meaning of any word; i.e. the meanings are not provided by the parts but by pragmatics (which may be language-specific, then also part of language-specific grammar education). Fay Freak (talk) 20:23, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I do somewhat agree with your first sentence. Other examples might be "They thought that man would never fly", "Next they'll be inventing smell-o-rama smartphones", or whatever. Really it seems to me to be a sense that can be, and indeed largely is, covered at "they". Mihia (talk) 21:05, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I do think it appears idiomatic enough with the lemming support, but they say (collocated with determiner similar to the man) should suffice to make the other entries really SoP. I find it is similar to ... as she is spoke, which is more clearly figurative, exusively refering to English, for what' s practically an anthropomorphism although I'mm not sure where that came from (I suspect accidental convergence cp. Ger. hier ~ hie ("here") and En. she << OE hēo, hīo, hīe or less likely from sēo, sīo, sīe).
Given impersonal expressions, "as is usually said", the added pronoun almost looks like a dummy pronoun, by the way. ApisAzuli (talk) 04:16, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

is a parent also a gossip / godsibEdit

w:Gossip says gossip denoted a godparent or parent, from the other's POV (a parent would be, to a godparent, equally sib (kin) in God). We define gossip/godsib as only a godparent, which matches most uses. But at least one work (Huaylas) seems to use godsib and gossip in a way that includes a parent from a godparent's POV. Is broad use (including the parent) attested enough that we should broaden the def or add a usage note? Also: the OED has separate senses for a gossip to a child (who godparents it), vs a google books:"gossip to the parents" (who does not godparent the parents! but co-sponsors a child with them); do we need to revise/split our def to cover the latter better? - -sche (discuss) 20:49, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]

scope of godsibling vs godbrotherEdit

Until recently, we defined godsibling only as "child of one's godparent" or "godchild of one's parent". However, there are cites that use it for "fellow godchild of one's godparent", so I broadened the first def, but now I wonder if the other sense should be rolled in to one combined sense? AFAICT the term is basically used for "sibling, except the kinship tie partially or entirely involves godparentage rather than blood-parentage". Relatedly, godbrother (and m.m. godsister) is defined only as "son of one's godparent", not "fellow godson of a godparent" (the only(!) sense the old OED seems to cover, with one cite), nor as "godson of one's parent". Do these meanings, which exist for godsibling, not also exist for the gendered terms? - -sche (discuss) 20:49, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I expanded godbrother and godsister. I also added god- as a prefix for the copious godfamily terms (godaunts, godkids, godgrandfathers, etc), although i anyone thinks we should insist consider alllll of these to be compounds with god or blends with other, earlier god... terms, let's discuss that... - -sche (discuss) 21:18, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]

rear its ugly headEdit

Also redirected from rear one's ugly head. I think the adjective ugly should be removed as this term is also used without it or any other adjective. I have added a reference and a quote that prove this point. Any adjective could be included in usexes or quotes - I'm not denying "rear its ugly head" is used. At present there is no entry for rear its head or rear one's head. DonnanZ (talk) 19:01, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Moved to rear one's head. PUC – 22:00, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Would it be better to have the main entry at rear its head (presently a redirect)? In my experience this phrase is more often used of issues, problems etc. than of people. Also, the usage notes presently are written as if the entry is "rear its head". Mihia (talk) 08:57, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I was just looking at that. It appears the original sense is a person raising their head (sense just added). I am 50% in agreement with you, but on the whole it may be better to leave rear its head as an essential redirect. DonnanZ (talk) 09:43, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Latin deglutissentEdit

Psalm 123 in the Vulgate contains a word deglutissent which is degluttissent but spelled with only one t instead of two. Here: http://vulsearch.sourceforge.net/html/Ps.html#x123_3 I think that's the only place in the Vulgate that that word appears, but I'm not sure.

Pretty sure this is a genuine variant spelling rather than a printing error, typo, or faulty OCR: if it is a printing error then it goes all the way back to Gutenberg's bible: https://www.bl.uk/treasures/gutenberg/pagemax.asp?Page=321r&vol=1&strCopy=G&strResize=no (first column, about half way down the page)

Anyway, I think an entry should be added so that people who happen to search for it will be able to find it more easily (as of right now, a search for "deglutissent" automatically redirects to déglutissent). But I'm not an official editor and don't know the correct way of adding a new entry. (Especially since it's a non-lemma form) Anyone who knows what he's doing, go ahead and add it if you'd like :) 19:35, 13 October 2021 (UTC)[]

It does also appear in printed Vulgates, and dictionaries give both forms: "dē-gluttĭo (deglūtĭo)", "dē-glut(t)io", "dēglūtĭō ou dēgluttĭō" (French), "dē-gluttiō en dēglūtiō" (Dutch). Compare for example with lītera vs. littera. --Myrelia (talk) 08:29, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Deglutio with one 't', and every inflected form of it that I searched for, also seems to be adequately attested, so I created an entry deglutio from which the inflected forms can be created. - -sche (discuss) 09:35, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
However, I don't see degluttissent in the conjugation table for degluttio (and degluttio doesn't show up in degluttissent's Whatlinkshere), nor deglutissent in the table for deglutio. Are our tables omitting some forms? - -sche (discuss) 09:43, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Yes, they are. Firstly, it is preposterous to assume that dēgluttiō would not have had perfect forms, secondly our tables of fourth conjugation verbs use to omit the contracted perfect forms which are particularle common in the perfect infinitive: gluttīvisse and gluttiisse are given but not gluttīsse. They definitely occur even in Republican times for metrical reasons. Only for irregular īre it was standard. Fay Freak (talk) 15:55, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
The verb is said to be defective, missing a supine stem. Interpolating the supine deglūttum, we can analyze this form as third-person plural pluperfect active subjunctive of deglūtio.  --Lambiam 16:07, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Psalm 105 in the Vulgate contains the form deglutivit, apparently the third-person singular perfect active indicative of deglūtio, also absent from our conjugation tables. This has nothing to do with supinelessness.  --Lambiam 18:59, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
(e/c) Ah, yes, I should've noticed that in the text at the very top of the table. Given that degluttissem, degluttisset, degluttissent; deglutissem, deglutisses, deglutisset, deglutissemus, deglutissent; deglutiissem, deglutiisses, deglutiisset, deglutiissent all get hits, and we already have entries for a few of them(!), would someone like to edit the tables to un-suppress them? - -sche (discuss) 19:00, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@-sche: No, because the tables (i.e. their codes in the entry) are not at issue. Module:la-verb documented at Template:la-conj would have to show them. But I am not sure it should, since, as said, they are only contractions occurring in certain environments (when īvi then there are ī forms). The full forms are all given. Although it is questionable even that we always give the ii forms, so for contrast we would expect the ī form too. Maybe @Brutal Russian wants to implement it. The issue is less with us though than with IP’s Latin teacher not informing him about the contractions, so it is really grammar that he lacked, Wiktionary can’t always give all forms (like it is disputed for Bantu and Nahuatl). Fay Freak (talk) 19:17, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]
We don’t list any īvi forms either.  --Lambiam 10:53, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
@Lambiam: I was talking about the base verb gluttiō and ī-conjugation verbs in general. About dēgluttiō I already said that its not listing perfect forms is preposterous, as they must have existed just like with the base verb.

any other familyEdit

We have a definition: "(countable) Synonym of family member (an individual who belongs to one's family). Do you have any other family?"
I don't think this is right. I mean, you wouldn't answer "yes, I have three other families: a brother, a sister, and an aunt." Isn't it just the general sense (sense 1)? You could similarly ask "do you have any other kin?", or ask a shopkeeper "do you have any other merchandise?", where we define "merchandise" only as an ucountable collective (apart from the archaic sense 3). - -sche (discuss) 21:33, 14 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I agree. Do we need any further evidence, or do the evidences of kin and merchandise suffice?  --Lambiam 10:49, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I think this is an uncountable use of family. The uncountable sense we have isn't it (and doesn't seem correctly labeled as uncountable). I could say I don't have much family in this country., but not I don't have many families in this country. with this meaning. DCDuring (talk) 11:48, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Family member isn't even substitutable into the usage example:
  • Do you have any other family member?
Do you have an other family member?
Determiners make a difference in (educated) standard English. The problems English speakers have with inflection in other languages is matched by the problem non-native speakers of English have with English determiners. DCDuring (talk) 11:56, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree with DCD. As far as can be told from the usage example, as well as the fact that present definition is wrong and this sense is otherwise missing from the article, it should be changed to uncountable, which I have now done. Mihia (talk)
  • By the way, do we need sense 11, Used attributively? Attributive use is possible with vast numbers of nouns and AFAIK we do not usually mention it separately. Is there a special reason why we should do so here? Mihia (talk) 20:29, 15 October 2021 (UTC) And there is a question also in my mind of whether the adj. senses are true adjectives, though adj senses did survive RFD/RFV a long time ago. Mihia (talk) 20:36, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
    I think the main point of including the attributive sense would be to list examples there to help illustrate the difference between it and the (alleged) examples of adjective usage. Urszag (talk) 20:46, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree with listing distinct attributive senses where these are not routinely predictable from general senses. Presently, though, we have examples "family pet", which means "pet belonging to a family" and "family characteristic", which means "characteristic of a family", and I'm unsure that either the "belonging to" or "of" relationship constitutes "not routinely predictable". To my mind, the less predictable attributive senses of the noun are those presently under "adjective" (excepting the "homosexual" sense, which I am not familiar with). Mihia (talk) 21:04, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Attributive and adjective senses sent to RFD. Mihia (talk) 12:54, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]


A question: should the definitions at Lincoln that are stuff named for Abraham Lincoln be listed at a separate etymology than the definitions that aren't? Purplebackpack89 02:55, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Personally I would say no. Lincoln's surname is the name Lincoln, with the same etymology. Equinox 04:41, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Is منطقوي really an Arabic word? It appears in the etymology for mıntakavî, which I copied from {{R:tr:OTK}} "Ar. minṭaḳavī منطقوی". But it's not in the ن ط ق(n-ṭ-q) section of {{R:ar:Wehr-3}} and a web search includes a lot of hits from Afghanistan (which I can't read). (ḳ is how the Turks spell q.) Vox Sciurorum (talk) 16:36, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]

The usual Arabic form is مَناطِقِيّ(manāṭiqiyy), but you do find Arabic uses for the variant. Look for inflected forms like المنطقوية on Google. I can't say how common it is. Moreover, it doesn't prove that it is an original Arabic formation. It could have been borrowed from Ottoman Turkish into Arabic. Derivations in -awī are particularly productive in Persian. 17:11, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I think the term mıntakavî may be labelled (dated); it is not listed in the TDK dictionary.  --Lambiam 23:02, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I put {{tlb|tr|obsolete}} after the head line. Perhaps it is not clearly visible there. I figured the word's absence from the usual references meant was uncommon even when it was in use. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 23:18, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

τ (mathematics)Edit

An IP made changes that I don't agree with. I don't think ('C') and ('r') should be written here. What's more, the whole text reads very awkwardly; first it is defined as 2π (which is fine) only to the be "defined" again without hinting at the fact that these definitions are indeed identical? If that wasn't enough, the definition goes on to give yet another equivalent definition (radians in a full turn) only to close it off with a repetition of 2π ("twice the value of pi"). My proposed wording:

(mathematics, neologism) An irrational constant with value 2π (approximately 6.283), the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its radius.

--Fytcha (talk) 20:03, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]

We don't need to mention ('C') and ('r') here. I don't personally have a problem with mentioning that 2π is "twice the value of pi", though I would move the latter next to the former, or that it is equal to the radian measure of a full turn. But if we don't link pi anywhere then we should link π (or even both). I would put π in italics according to convention. Mihia (talk) 20:49, 15 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Just thought I'd mention this: I think a note should be made that there isn't a universal consensus regarding using τ in place of 2π. I mean, it's pretty widespread... but see here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turn_(angle)#Tau_proposals Moreover, I believe that some mathematicians instead use τ for π/2. (Because of the fact that the τ symbol looks like half a π symbol.) And for all I know, some mathematicians might even use τ to mean other things. The naming convention for τ as 2π looks to be relatively recent and doesn't seem to be as universally accepted as π, at least in my opinion. Which I think is why there are groups trying to spread awareness and promote the idea, by having "tau day" on June 28th, etc.. Also, maybe add an etymology: I think τ comes from the word "turn" but I'm not entirely sure. 12:20, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Indeed, mathematicians also use   as an ordinary variable: [49], [50], [51].  --Lambiam 13:52, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Most mathematicians use LaTeX for mathematical markup. The markup <math>\pi</math> produces  . I suggest that when using   in its mathematical sense, we too use this makeup.  --Lambiam 13:52, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I agree it’s a good practice to use LaTeX for mathematical markup where appropriate, for example, at googol.SGconlaw (talk) 04:22, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Was [redacted by OP, see explanation below] (or something similar) ever used?Edit

[As the OP, I have redacted the word I asked about, because I now feel it may have been coined with a bad motive, to make fun of Germans, and I don't want web-crawlers and mirrors to plaster it everywhere when it appears to be a post-WW1 lexicographer's joke, probably never used and therefore not in our remit. It was nothing more than the gently humorous w:Henning Wehn would use, but I'll leave the stand-up to him [52]. Obviously, the word can be found by anyone interested by reading the version before this in History. --Enginear 21:58, 17 October 2021 (UTC)][]

In the early 1930s, my dad learned German at school, and kept a typical school German/English dictionary published IIRC in the 1920s. In the 1960s, I was doing some German homework and realised I had left my dictionary at school, so looked in my dad's, and spotted this long word for what would now be der Gleichrichter (and I think I have seen das Rektifier too, a few years back). It seemed a wonderful coinage, so I (sort of) remembered it, occasionally mentioning it to friends.

But by some time in the 70s, I realised that I couldn't quite remember it any more, so when visiting my parents, I went to check it, only to discover that my Dad had thrown the dictionary out -- apparently that wasn't the only archaic word in it. So all I had left was my cod-translation of back-forward current right-going putter, from which I tried to re-engineer it. I believe I checked my own ex-school G/E dictionary (probably late-50s vintage) and found that what is now called Wechselstrom was then Rückvorwärtsstrom, which was what I expected, and the other words were obvious. I think recht comes next, though it could conceivably have been gleich, I think gehen or gehend follows, and similarly, I think macher is correct even though it's not the best translation of putter.

So, I'm interested to know if there's any evidence that this word, which wonderfully describes what a rectifier does, was ever used, or whether it was just a lexicographer's dream of a word that "should" be used. I have tried books.google from time to time, and have never found any mention, but that might just be due to a few spelling errors, and I doubt if Google's corpus stretches to many German texts about electrics at the start of the 20th century. I realise this might better be addressed to de.wikt, but my German really isn't up to that any more! --Enginear 04:39, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Don't know anything about electrics, but it doesn't sound realistic. German does sometimes use very long words, but I'm sure something shorter could have been thought of here, even if it wasn't "Gleichrichter" yet. Also the formation "-gleichgehendmacher" sounds a bit childish or ad hoc. If you remember the word correctly, I would suppose that it was made up. Of course you never know... When you search for it, be sure to spell "vorwärts" with a v :-) 2A01:598:9290:214:8BD1:12D4:9B73:9850 09:59, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Aargh, whoops! I've corrected the spelling. Ta --Enginear 16:39, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Of course, the "a bit childish or ad hoc" could just be the way a 15 yr old boy (as I was then) mis-remembered it! Perhaps the original was better. --Enginear 21:58, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Wechselstrom was already the customary term in the 19th century.[53][54][55]  --Lambiam 12:00, 16 October 2021 (UTC) Gleichrichter is also a term found already in the 19th century.[56][57][58]  --Lambiam 12:09, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
No, because Handwerker are simple people who prefer not to talk much. Fay Freak (talk) 13:25, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Nicely put :-) Though if you look at the forums on the IET's website you'll find similar drawn-out discussions about the number of electrons which can dance on the head of a wire as you'll find here, with even more uses of arcane acronyms and similar occasional trolls. TBH, their predecessors probably discussed this very same topic at far greater length 60 yrs ago! --Enginear 16:39, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks Lambiam, Fay and the Anon. I agree, and it's interesting to see that even the word for alternating current was obsolete (if it ever existed) by the 70s. I think this is an example of the need to be careful not to believe everything in school textbooks...particularly if associated with a country you have recently been at war with or previously colonised. I (more or less) remembered it because I thought it was a really clever way of describing a newish item which was not yet well known, cf physics teachers speaking of Nm/s2 for a while before saying that the unit has its own name, watts.
However, it seems possible, perhaps probable, that the lexicographers' motives were less pure, "we know what a rectifier is, but the Germans need this long description", similarly to the trope in the UK boys' comics of the 60s, where Germans were shown as ridiculously rule-bound, and the British would win because they had made some error which the Germans had failed to imagine, with the last panel including an exclamation such as "Ze English, zey are zo muttling!" In case that were so, I avoided using the agglomorated word [I forget the lexicographical term] in the body of the post, and after a few more hours, I'll change the title to "...the word I previously mentioned..." in the hope of limiting the number of mirror sites which pick it up. There are enough clues for anyone else to reverse-engineer the word if they want to, or just to use History and return to the version at the time-stamp of this revision. Thanks for your input. --Enginear 16:39, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

English thenceEdit

Sometimes I hear "from thence". But at least according to Wiktionary's thence entry, the "from" would be redundant, since "thence" already means "from there". Anyone know anything about this, or think a usage note should be added? 12:24, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]

This parallels German von dannen, in spite of dannen already meaning it, likewise von hinnen. Possibly this is caused by the unwontedness of the words, by reason of which speakers attempt to clarify them (thereby diverting your attention and thus working against their goals …). Fay Freak (talk) 13:19, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
A similar case is "from whence", which is mentioned in a usage note at whence. Mihia (talk) 16:56, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[]
There's also from off! Equinox 04:25, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]
And off of. Leasnam (talk) 05:16, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Don't even get me started on "off of". Mihia (talk) 13:58, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Curious, any chance that's a Pondian difference? I'm quite accustomed to hearing constructions like "Get off of there!" in US usage. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 22:14, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

and friendsEdit

I just heard the phrase "...and there are scientific reasons why we'd like to know what colour T-Rex and friends were... - here and friends refers to other dinosaurs. I'm not finding this particular use of 'friends' at friend or friends. We have a similar collocation in and company which appears to be unfinished (missing a definition). So, is and friends worth an add ? Leasnam (talk) 11:15, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I feel we need more evidence that this isn’t a one-off use. — SGconlaw (talk) 12:50, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]
No, I don't believe it's a one-off. In colloquial English it is not too uncommon to describe or refer to someone or something and their ilk collectively as "(someone/something) and friends", when in fact they're not literal friends of (someone/something). I think it's an extension of terms we often hear like "Sesame Street and Friends", etc. that as adults we employ when we want to relate something briefly and without a lot of effort. I would also not say that it is common - I don't think I use it much (if ever) but I hear it from time to time. This time I heard it on YouTube's SciShow. Leasnam (talk) 13:27, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]
It seems as valid as other member of Category:English coordinates. DCDuring (talk) 15:27, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Without checking for strict citability, I consider this use common enough to have in the dictionary. I would add it at friends where it is more likely to be found. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 19:07, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]

troll: Etym 2 & 3Edit

I'm trying to determine why we show Etymology 2 and Etymology 3 separately at troll. Can someone please help me understand ? To me, they look like they should be merged, since they are the same term (?). Leasnam (talk) 17:01, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]

I’m inclined to agree. The MED only has one entry for trollen. — SGconlaw (talk) 11:27, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Dutch regenen dat het giet, vriezen dat het kraakt, dat het een aard heeftEdit

What is the meaning of dat in these expressions? zoveel dat? Are there other similar idiomatic expressions? PUC – 20:16, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Isn't it just "that" ? Am I missing something ? Perhaps meaning "(to the extent/degree) that" so yes, 'zoveel dat' sounds right. Leasnam (talk) 23:41, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Turkish gangava is a borrowing from a Greek word for a sponge fishing dredge or dragnet used around the Mediterranean until the mid-20th century. English and French writers also wrote gangava, while Italians had a gagova[59]. Usually it refers to a dredge or dragnet, but sometimes to a boat. What is the original Greek word? It would not be currently in widespread use because the fishing method has been banned or severely restricted in Greece since the 1950s. Vox Sciurorum (talk) 23:56, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Hostage is an adjective, change my mind. DAVilla 10:18, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

Many of the examples in the alleged "adjective" section are of the form "more/less/most/very/so hostage to ~". In all these, the modifier "more/less/most/very/so" applies to the whole of the phrase "hostage to", so these are not evidence that the word "hostage" itself is an adjective. (Let me also mention in passing that these kinds modifiers are not anyway proof of true adjectivity; consider e.g. "a very New York way of doing things", "a more New York way of dressing".)
Attributive uses such as "hostage doll/pet" are inconclusive.
The example with "hostage of" ("leaves the interviewee even more hostage of the researcher") is clearly not adjectival by any contortion. Mihia (talk) 16:56, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]
The only evidence against it being an adjective that I have is that no OneLook dictionary has an adjective entry for it. The OED almost always has an entry for attributive use of a noun, so that alone would not count. But it seems to meet the adjectivity criteria we use, which include both predicate (He is hostage to the situation., ie, no determiner) and attributive use. A definition of the word as used as predicate in this way might be something like "in the condition of a hostage or one resembling that of a hostage." I don't have any examples of hostage in attributive use that aren't really best characterized as attributive use of the noun (eg, hostage crisis, hostage situation). Those uses don't fit the definition I have offered above. DCDuring (talk) 20:31, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]
I can't accept "He is hostage to the situation" as an adjective use. I see it is an idiomatic omission of the article, blurring into idiomatic uncountable use, something like "He is party to the deception" or "She is mother to him". Mihia (talk) 21:28, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]


Are we missing a sense at Latin tragula ? Could it also mean "dragnet", a later sense evolution belonging to Late or Middle Latin ? Leasnam (talk) 11:47, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

@Leasnam: Added with 1st-century CE quote. Fay Freak (talk) 15:00, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]
Thank you ! Leasnam (talk) 15:04, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]


The noun at strange has "vagina" as the definition, however I'm not sure this is quite right. 1). 'strange' should refer to "sex outside of one's current relationship", as in "I'm feeling like getting me some strange this weekend" (strange = "heretofore unknown sex/sexual encounter", i.e. "strange love", "sex with a stranger", "sex with someone new", etc). 2). The quote there from South Park seems to be referencing a slightly different but related term taming strange from the verb to tame strange which means to "conquer, control, or subdue a prostitute (i.e. "a strange sexual partner" - see meaning above) based off of the analogy of 'taming wild horses'. I've never heard of someone's vagina being referred to as a "strange". Leasnam (talk) 13:19, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]

ScG ‘càil’Edit

Can anyone hope with the etymology of the Scottish Gaelic word ‘càil’ - ‘nothing / anything’ used with neg. phrases ? CecilWard (talk) 21:19, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[]