Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with a passion. Learn More

Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with a passion. Learn More



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June 19, 2011

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Native English speaker. Conversant in German, Russian, Spanish, and Anglo-Saxon.

Ferþu Hal!

I hav a pilot's license (SEL certificate); I'm a certified diver (NAUI); I'v skydived and was qualified as a paratrooper in the Army (Airborne!); I was a soldier (MI, Armor, Engineer).

I workt for a corporation, was a law enforcement officer, and a business owner.

Bachelor's in Finance; minor in Economics
Masters of Aeronautical Sciences

Strong backer of English spelling reform.


Now I'v written my first novel [ ] and I'm working on others.

Latest Comments


  • September 6, 2013, 1:11pm

@Jayles ... I'v stumble'd over an answer to frain you put a long time ago ... another word for "person". It's Brit slang but it works most of the time: bod


  • August 30, 2013, 2:38pm

@jayles ... How about, "open working hours". The boss is unbending/set/unyielding/hard/stubborn when it comes to pay raises".


I know that I keep beating this drum, but the OED's stand on Old English is only an outgrowth of the slant for Latin and French. While I understand why the OED stops at ME for words that it puts into its unshortend wordbook (I don't yeasay it but I understand it), it has led to bad etyms for many, many words.

One must keep in mind, that these etyms hav been done over many years by many folks. All these folks hav been steept in Latin and French but it is eathseen that only a few hav had a good knowledg of OE. This has led to unsteddiness when it comes to etyms. For byspel, dot is from OE dott … dott is found only once in OE yet OE gets the mark for the etym but OE scrutnung (scrutiny) is overlookt even tho we say ˈskro͞otn-ē rather than scru-ti-nee … and OE has scrudnere/scrutnere … a scrutineer.

Service is markt as first showing up in OE … but I can only find it as part of a kenning 'syrfe-treow' – serv(ice)-tree (the OE word for a sorbus). That's ok but then 'cover' is overlookt in Coferflod (Cover-water, the OE name for the Sea of Galilee). It misses many Latinates that first show up in OE and insted puts them down as ME (often thru French).

Often the OED can't hold back from needlessly kowtowing to French. For byspel, false "from OE fals … from Latin falsum … reinforced or re-formed in Middle English from Old French fals …". Now tell me why it was "re-formed" from OF fals rather from OE fals?

Many words are likely, at worst, a blend of OE and either OF or Latin words but nothing is said of any likely OE root. Tally - from Anglo-Norman French tallie, from Latin talea ‘twig, cutting’. What about OE tælian, talian - to count, calculate, reckon, account, consider, think, esteem, value, impute?

And what of the root of the A-N tallie? Is it truly from Latin talea? Is there not a Frankish word along the lines of OFrs. talia? The lack of knowledg of Frankish words and the sheer dearth of known Frankish words greatly hinders the kenseek (research).

Then there words like 'chine' [1]: "from Old French eschine, based on a blend of Latin spina ‘spine’ and a Germanic word meaning ‘narrow piece’, related to shin." … Shin itself is "related to German Schiene ‘thin plate’ and Dutch scheen." Sooo … it seems that 'eschine' truly a Teutonish word that inholds the meaning of the Latin spina. But the true frain is whether or not that meaning came from spina or was alreddy inheld in Frankish word. Liken OE cinu (whence chine [2]) meaning a 'cleft, chink'. Is not a backbone a string of 'clefts' in the back? So now we come full ring … is chine [1] truly from OF eschine or only another meaning from OE cinu? If one is steept in OE, one might say the latter … if one doesn't know OE but knows Latin and French, one might say the former … and thus the conundrum we hav with many words.

Withal there were the "spelling reforms" of the 16th hundyear. Secure is nothing more than the switch to a more Latin spelling of OE sicor (from Latin securus) found in ME also as sikur, yet the OED says nothing of the OE or ME words and only dates it back to the mid 16th hundyear.

Here's one that I found only the other night: 'superhumeral' ... Scrýde bine mid superhumerale and mid alban and stolan and handline and planétan, þ is godwebben cappe, MS. Land 482, f. 48 a.

So now we see the forefast super- show'd up in OE on a Latinate that was thrown in as if others would know what a superhumeral is (over the shoulder vestment).

We hav OE 'pihment' from Latin pigment but the OED says ME not OE (and note the -ment afterfast).

Then there is OE weoþ-mynd ... ME worthmint ... -mint is not a misspelling of Latin -ment!


  • July 26, 2013, 9:10am

Should You Angle for Anglo-Saxon, or Enlighten with Latin?
by Mark Nichol

Pled versus pleaded

  • July 25, 2013, 6:34pm

@WW ... Yes, I think "spot on" is more British but I did hav a British neighbor for a while so maybe I pick'd it up from him.

There are many reasons why some verbs that one might think should be strong (stem change) rather than weak (-ed).

It could be that heed, seed, and weed would sound like other word ... hed (head), sed (said), wed. Truthfully, for seed, it was a noun that became a verb so which wontedly leads to a weak verb. Need seems to also hav been a noun (neod) before becoming a verb ((ge)neodian ... shows up in Late OE).

Knead in OE was a strong verb ... past tense of "cnæd". Indeed, in some dialects it is "knodden" ...

Pled versus pleaded

  • June 14, 2013, 11:38pm

@Limey Pat ... WW is spot on. BTW, "off of" isn't an Americanism. The OED finds it as far back as ME c1450.

From Shakespeare's Henry VI, part 2, Act II: Simpcox: A fall off of a tree.

And let's not forget the Rolling Stones' "Get Off Of My Cloud"!

Think of pleaded > pled as going from goeth > goes. Things change!

Pled versus pleaded

  • May 25, 2013, 8:24am

@JusticeJim ... True ... It's time for WW, Jayles, and I to take this back to the Anglish thread if we wish to keep talking about it.


  • May 25, 2013, 8:13am

Since the net is down at my house (I'm in town right now), I'v been reading: "A Biographical History of English Literature" ... from 1873 I think (there's no date on the title page).

A few qwotes:

The Norman monks looked upon English books ("Anglo- Saxon MSS.") as "old and useless," and cleaned the writing off the parchment with pumice stone, and then used it for their own documents. … A Biographical History of English Literature, p18

Nay; so far did the Normans carry their oppression, that little boys at school were obliged to translate their Latin into French, and the mother tongue was banished from the schoolroom. p26

And it is a fact worthy of special — notice that between 1350 and 1485 the English language had changed so much that the old version of John de Trevisa was almost unintelligible. … In fact, the vocabulary of the English language was changing; it was becoming extremely Latinised, and the genuine English words of Trevisa were falling into forgetfulness. Mr.Marsh mentions that Caxton's "Game of the Chesse", contains three times as many French words as the "Morte d'Arthur" of Sir Thomas Malory.

That the sixteenth century was the time of pedantio quotation, many books being crammed with Latin quotations, often more numerous than the original matter. p93

But from the beginning of the sixteenth to the middle of the seventeenth centuries, "it is probable," says Mr. Wright, "that the great mass of the reading public were as well acquainted with Latin as with their own mother tongue." And, within the same period, *** it came to be the fashion to use Latin words in an English shape*** to an enormous extent. It was extremely easy to do this. A writer had only to take the root of a Latin word, and give an English ending and a slightly English look, and the thing was done. p117

Sir Thomas Browne ..., " We shall, within a few years, be fain ***to learn Latin to understand English***, and a work will prove of equal facility in either." p118

This use, then, of Latin words had got, not only into written, but into spoken, language; it had made its way into the Court, into the bar, and into the pulpit. It was ***practised and was understood by every one who had the slightest claim to education***. Spenser lived in the midst of all this; and, as himself a learned man and a courtier, he could not have resisted its influence. And thus Spenser could not help using Latin expressions ***where English would have done equally well***. p119

... a " Person of Quality " in the last century finds it necessary, on the contrary, to rid him of his " Saxon dialect ;" p120

And so that you'll know that the writer wasn't a Saxonist:

It will also be plain to the reader that all the poetry and prose, but more especially the poetry, of Englishmen down to the fourteenth century (with the single and brilliant exception of Laurence Minot, and he was of French origin) is dull, heavy, and only half articulate Their works read like the feeble and clumsy efforts of half-educated country people to express their thoughts. The Norman-French leaven was needed to raise them out of their infantile condition, and to produce the free and powerful speech of a Chaucer. p37

And Johnson (or wordbook gefrain) said in a foreword to his wordbook, somewhat ironically given that he was writing in a latinate hevy way:

… let them, … endeavour, with all their influence, to stop the licence of translators, whose idleness and ignorance, ***if it be suffered to proceed, will reduce us to babble a dialect of France***.


  • May 25, 2013, 7:50am

@Jayles ... You're always wondering about those Latinates in OE ... Here is a qwick and ruff list:


  • May 10, 2013, 2:19am

You can also note "bendy" for flexible ...

I hav been putting together as many words from William Barnes as I can find. It's a long list! Some of the words are clumsy but others might work.

Here's one: skyedge for horizon

The Oxford Dict. Online (OED) says this for backward(s):

usage: In US English, the adverb form is sometimes spelled backwards (the ladder fell backwards), but the adjective is almost always backward (a backward glance). Directional words using the suffix -ward tend to have no s ending in US English, although backwards is more common than afterwards, towards, or forwards. The s ending often (but not always) appears in the phrases backwards and forwards and bending over backwards. In British English, the spelling backwards is more common than backward .

I often put the 's' on backward as an adverb ... but not as an adj. I don't ever recall anyone of my teachers saying the adverb with an 's' was wrong. But it's a long time since I sat in Mrs. Lipscomb's class.

For 'forward' ... it's pretty much without the 's'. But 'towards' sounds good ... sounds like 'twards' but still has the 's'.


What can I do besides... October 8, 2011