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jayles

Joined: August 12, 2010
Comments posted: 733
Votes received: 94

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Questions Submitted

Five eggs is too many

July 1, 2013

Recent Comments

In the meantime there seem to be lots more hits on google for phrases like "she texted yesterday" than "she text yesterday"; so at the moment "texted" seems more common.

jayles the unlord May 24, 2014, 5:40pm

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http://english.stackexchange.com/questions/3503...

It is indeed true that some verbs have changed from the "ablaut" (vowel-change) sytem to the common "regular" inflection system, and a few have gone the other way. So technically there's no reason why "text" shouldn't one day become the standard past form. Stick around a few decades and we'll see.

jayles the unlord May 24, 2014, 5:33pm

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Well the Latin plural of innuendo might be innuendis; but really best avoided; hints would be a better word-choice.

jayles the unmighty May 24, 2014, 1:57pm

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"advocating for" as a phrase has upticked dramatically since 1980 in google books, especially in US English. Whether this is use or misuse, or a shift in the language is debatable.

jayles the unmighty May 23, 2014, 12:16am

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Or alternatively one could join the Quakers who might accommodate your thou-ward leanings

jayles the unmighty May 21, 2014, 8:13pm

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Until at least WWI, thou was widespread across a large expanse of Northern England.
It was still used withing the family in Derbyshire in 1970's. For instance, "astha put 'bike in't ginnel?" I think if you went there today and talked to older people you would find it still alive and well. "Art thou" sounds like "artha".
Check out D H Lawrence:
http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/parade/abj76/...

jayles the unmighty May 21, 2014, 8:06pm

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@WW "Slough is a rather characterless town"
Surely the train station, the mixed bus/pedestrian high street, the Mars factory, the linked traffic lights, a selection of excellent brothels, and a helpful branch of Samaritans, lend it a certain je ne sais quoi. If you go there, please keep an eye out for my virginity.

jayles the unmighty May 21, 2014, 3:39am

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wikipedia.org/wiki/Debate_on_traditional_and_simplified_Chinese_characters#Pro-Simplified_characters_2
see the section on literacy rates - basically simplification has not improved literacy.

The real catch with English is we have about 11 basic vowels but only aeiou and y on our keyboard so some agreed sistem would b kneaded if truely hole-sale change was the goal. One needs to address bakwards compatibility and word-reference books and the whole issue of ASCII/UTF-8/sort-sequence if one includes extra chars.

I do agrree that alternative spellings of -ough words are well worth thinking about.
<a href="theguardian.com/education/2006/nov/01/schools.wordsandlanguage" >

theguardian.com/education/2006/nov/01/schools.wordsandlanguage

jayles the unmighty May 20, 2014, 8:13pm

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books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=My+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2CMy+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=My+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2CMy+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 8:12pm

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Ngram must be a very blunt instrument indeed as I still can't get "My family are" to top "My family is" , just lots of "noise" on the former and seemingly rare true instances of family with a plural verb.

/books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=My+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2CMy+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 8:10pm

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@WW thank you ; that just about wraps it up as far as I'm concerned.
Not surprised results for "Each family are" are spurious ; I really expected zero when I keyed it in.

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 3:22pm

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Perhaps the bit about sports commentators was not clear: I meant that just because one can point to a few examples or a particular usage does not prove that it is normal or standard; one needs to establish that the usage is common, widespread, and substantial.

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 3:17pm

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I'm really only interested in what is acceptable in formal writing; specifically for IELTS academic purposes.

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 6:19am

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Well I haven't seen a transatlantic split in usage yet: all I seem to get is a minumum 3:1 ratio in favor of collective noun+singular verb.

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 3:50am

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books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=this+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthis+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthis+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2Cthis+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1920&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Cthis family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bthis Family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 3:47am

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books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=each+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2Ceach+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012%2Ceach+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2Ceach+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1920&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Ceach family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Beach family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEach family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ceach family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Ceach family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Beach family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEach family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ceach family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 3:43am

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Just looking at the results for "pair of * is,pair of * are" and "pair of * was, pair of * were" on ngrams and there doesn't seem to be a preponderance of either singular or plural, or any marked us/gb split. Does this mean that prima facie they don't "naturally" take a plural?
"the couple is" also outnumbers "the couple are" 2:1, which suggests that a plural verb may be less than automatic.

books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=each+couple+is%2Ceach+couple+are%2Cthis+couple+is%2C+this+couple+are%2C+every+couple+is%2Cevery+couple+are&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1920&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Ceach couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Beach couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEach couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ceach couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cevery couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bevery couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEvery couple is%3B%2Cc0

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 3:39am

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"the crowd goes wild" outnumbers "the crowd go wild" 9:1


books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=the+crowd+goes+wild%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthe+crowd+go+wild%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthe+crowd+goes+wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%2Cthe+crowd+go+wild%3Aeng_gb_2012&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Cthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bthe Crowd Goes Wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cthe crowd go wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 12:36am

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@HS you are so right!
Often it's a question of what is "standard" or "normally used" in business, professional, academic, published writing, although some magazines are deliberately written for a teenage market in a more conversational style. Publishers' in-house style guides give an insight.
The fact that a couple of sports commentators are using it does not make it suddenly normal or standard, though in a sense part of their job is to create new and exciting language, so it's not automatically "wrong" either.
The ABs will deal to "the English" down your way and later at Twickenham.

jayles the unmighty May 19, 2014, 12:16am

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@Jasper Not really, but one could consider the way one uses "the Court" when addressing the judge, could one not? We tend to do it with length :
A) "I was just wondering if you could possibly pass the salt for just one moment?"
B) "Oh were you."

jayles the unmighty May 18, 2014, 7:52pm

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