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Q&A

General Q&A about specific languages, language in general, and linguistics.

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What is "Charter change bill" in English?

I have read this headline in a news website which think is being primarily written in Australian English: Government's charter change bill sails through 3rd reading How should this be underst...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 2y ago by mcalex‭

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scilicet: How did 'it is permitted to know' semantically shift to signify 'that is to say, namely'?

How did signification 1 beneath semantically shift to 2? I'm befuddled by the relevant of licit, because what does "permitted" here signify? Why would a Roman require permission to know so...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Which phrase is correct? (Is using plural form for singular object make sense?) (Does using plural form for singular object make sense?)

Replying to the last edit (#4)... Since it language related site hence I am asking the question by creating new Q rather than commenting there. The earlier title was Is using plural form for sin...

3 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 2y ago by deleted user

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What language is this (cursive) sample?

A recent post on Language Log includes this sample of an unidentified language: The article says this about the source: This is from RG 84, General Correspondence of the American consulate in...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Monica Cellio‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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What should I use instead of `have` in present perfect tense?

As we know have is verb and auxiliary also. What should I say when I have to use have in present perfect tense (sentence). Usually, what came to my mind that is Have you have it? (completely wro...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 2y ago by Cereal Nommer‭

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Does using plural form for singular object make sense?

Some people use they/them if they can't identity gender/sex (gender and sex isn't same). But when mentioning a single person should we use plural pronoun? We know that "they/them" is plural form. ...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

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What is the difference between a guild and a lodge?

What is the difference between a guild and a lodge? The context to this question is pretty much Freemasonry terminology but please feel free to answer with a general English context.

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 2y ago by gmcgath‭

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How did "re" + "join" semantically compound to mean "riposte"?

In French, « joindre » means "to join". What semantic notions underlie « joindre » with the 2020 English "rejoin", which means to riposte? How did rejoindre shift to signify the 2020 English "rej...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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How did “-able” semantically shift to mean “requiring”?

Etymonline on "-able" doesn't expound the origin of "requiring". -able common termination and word-forming element of English adjectives (typically based on verbs) and generally adding a notion...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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How does "drive out" shift to signify "weigh out"?

I boldened the relevant parts of the quotations, so that you don't have to read all of the quotations. I'm untrained at metaphors! How did "drive out" develop the metaphor of "weigh out"? exact ...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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Linguistics of categorization

I think that in most languages, when people define sets of data in general and when people create taxonomy for website webpages in particular (webpage categorization), they would mostly name catego...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 2y ago by deleted user

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What's the semantic field of "putare"?

What SINGLE bigger picture and base meaning relates, bestrides, and underlies all 9 of putare's superficially UNrelated, but multitudinous, meanings below? Oxford Latin Dictionary (2012 2 ed), ...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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How did 'repraesentāre' semantically shift to signify 'standing in the place of another'?

To wit, how does "present again, bring back" (in repraesentāre) semantically appertain to the notion of 'standing in the place of another'? represent [14] English borrowed represent from Latin...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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How did 'folding back' semantically shift to mean 'reply'?

To wit, how does the notion of "folding back" semantically appertain to "respond"? reply [14] Etymologically, reply means ‘fold back’. It comes ultimately from Latin replicāre ‘fold back, unf...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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How's “drag” (tractāre) semantically related to “handle, deal with, discuss”?

How exactly did tractāre branch out "metaphorically to ‘handle, deal with, discuss’"? How does "dragging" semantically appertain to ‘handle, deal with, discuss’? Dragging connotes phy...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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How did 'in-' + 'putare' compound to mean 'to attribute, credit to'?

I quote Etymonline on impute (v.): early 15c., from Old French imputer, emputer (14c.) and directly from Latin imputare "to reckon, make account of, charge, ascribe," from assimilated form of ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Human general communication languages with generally no plurality

I inquire about Languages or language families in which, in general / in flowing conversion there is no plural ; from a bit of read I understand that both Mandarin and Japanese are such language; t...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

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Malay languages or Indonesian languages --- which is more close to Philippine languages?

Malay languages or Indonesian languages --- which is more close to Philippine languages? I don't know much about any so I would not make any assumptions.

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Is there any country in South America in which Spanish and/or Portuguese aren't dominant (excluding the Caribbean's)? [closed]

Is there any country in South America in which Spanish and/or Portuguese aren't dominant? (excluding the Caribbean's but not excluding any other island around South America).

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  closed 2y ago by Moshi‭

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How to use the soft sign (Ь)?

I can read Russian, and the character that interests me most is Ь. In other words, the soft sign as it's called. I know other languages also has this but I got this from Russian so I'll focus on th...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by General Sebast1an‭

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How tan pronounced?

I noticed whenever I say tan it sounds like ten. I guess, it is not understandable all the time. So, how tan pronounced? I know little bit of phonetic. So, that will be OK for me also.

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Is it correct to use `Had I had it?`

Past participle of have is had. I asked a question What should I use instead of have in present perfect tense?. I was recently thinking of past perfect. Had I had it? (While had is past particip...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user

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What is "phoolon" in Hindi?

What does "phoolon" mean in Hindi? Google translate said that it means flower. But, I know that "ful" means flower. phoolon word is new to me. I guess, it is not usable nowadays,is it?

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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What does "po" mean in Filipino?

What does "po" mean in Filipino?

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by General Sebast1an‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by General Sebast1an‭

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How does the original meaning of “but” (“outside”) relate to its current 2021 meanings?

How do the principal 2021 meanings of "but" relate, if any, to its original meaning of "outside"? E.g. how does "no more than; only" appertain to "outside"? CONJUNCTION Used to introduce ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Why didn't the same one (ancestor) language preponderate over China, Japan, Korea?

Don't hesitate to revise my post, particularly if you want to add maps. I'm basically extending this question on Reddit to Chinese. Unquestionably China, Korea, Japan are much closer to each other...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by TextKit‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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A possible common confusion between electronic, digital and virtual

Over the years I have noticed a common confusion between the terms: Electronic Digital (something can be electronic but analogue instead of digital) Virtual (something can be defined as virtua...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

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Why did David Ricardo coin "rent", to signify income from a factor of production that exceeds the minimum amount necessary (to beget that factor of production)?

At the time that Ricardo (1772-1823) coined "rent", did "rent" already signify Modern English's lay meaning of 'rent' (tenant's regular payment to a landlord for the use of property or land)? ...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

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How did "as" amass all its confusing "broad and vague meanings"?

as. Do not use the conjunction as when you mean “since,” “because,” “when,” or “while.” Its broad and vague meanings can create confusion. For example, As a potential work stoppage threatened to ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by PSTH‭

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What sound did the letter ℵ encode in ancient Hebrew, and why did it morph into the greek vowel Α?

Here are two claims I've often heard or read: The Hebrew language originally did not write down vowels. The Greek (and subsequently the Latin) alphabet developed from the Hebrew alphabet....

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by celtschk‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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How did 'forfeit' shift to signify ‘penalty imposed for committing such a misdeed'?

I don't understand this semantic shift, because a misdeed differs from a penalty or "something to which the right is lost through a misdeed". Can someone please fill in the gap? forfeit [13] ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Is any theory according to which Yiddish is Turkic or Khazar-based supported by any serious evidence?

I never understood a bit of Yiddish until I started to understand a bit of German. In my understanding Yiddish is a German language seasoned with words and sentences in Hebrew, Aramaic and possibl...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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The Thai words for "definition" and its derivates

I understand that in Thai language there are two ways to say "definition". กำหนัด == gam-hno(a^)d นิยาม == Ni-yam If I understand correct, the first one is used to describe how a person defi...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 3y ago by deleted user

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Why do only certain letters have an ending form in Hebrew? [duplicate]

There's a list of certain letters in Hebrew that have a different form if they're at the end of a word - much like capital letters at the beginning of a sentence in English, but only for specific l...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Mithical‭  ·  edited 3y ago by msh210‭

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How did 'solicit' semantically shift to signify ‘manage affairs’?

I don't understand the semantic shift from sollicitāre ‘disturb, agitate’ to the meaning of "manage affairs", probably because "disturb, agitate" pejoratively connotes discontentment and upheaval, ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Why “chose” in action? Why not “right/droit” in action?

Chose (in action) this can be translated as ‘thing in action’. It is an intangible right which is essentially a right to sue. JC Smith's The Law of Contract 2021 3 ed, p 476. Law French us...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 3y ago by PSTH‭

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Why is the word here "HaNofelet" and not "HaNofalet" when there's a grammatical pause?

When reading this section of Amos on Saturday, something struck me about this verse (Amos 9:11): :בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא אָקִ֛ים אֶת־סֻכַּ֥ת דָּוִ֖יד הַנֹּפֶ֑לֶת וְגָדַרְתִּ֣י אֶת־פִּרְצֵיהֶ֗ן וַהֲרִ...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Mithical‭  ·  edited 3y ago by msh210‭

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Why do the most spoken human languages in 2021 greet with words related to health or peace?

Why do most Asian, Middle Eastern and European languages greet with words anent health or peace? I know that "salutation" itself meant "health". salute [14] Salute goes back ultimately to ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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How did “negotiable” mean “a good or security whose ownership is easily transferable”?

I knew merely the first most popular meaning of negotiate. I never knew this second legal meaning A document of an amount of money, or a title, which is readily transferable to another. Diff...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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What is the most dominant Arabic dialect in Horn of Africa region?

What is the most dominant Arabic dialect in Horn of Africa region? Egyptian Arabic dialect? Sudanic Arabic dialect? Somali Arabic dialect? Some other Arabic dialect?

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 3y ago by deleted user

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Are Sudanic Arabic and Yemeni Arabic similar?

Are Sudanic Arabic and Yemeni Arabic similar? By means of the very nuances of the two Arabic dialects.

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by deleted user

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What spoken human languages in 2021 don't salute with words related to health or peace?

What are the exceptions to the fact that most Asian, Middle Eastern and European languages greet with words anent health or peace? I know that "salutation" itself meant "health". Why don'...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭

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How did "join issue" mean ‘jointly submit a disputed matter to the decision of the court’?

Kindly see the embolded phrase below. Etymonline is written too abstrusely. issue [13] The words issue and exit are closely related etymologically. Both go back ultimately to the Latin v...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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How did "put under" shift to signify "cause to take the place of", then "enough"?

How did "put under" shift to signify "cause to take the place of"? Then how did "cause to take the place of" shift to signify "enough"? sufficient [14] _Sufficient _originated ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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How did 'quibus?' shift to mean 'evasion of a point at issue'?

quibble [17] _Quibble _probably originated as a rather ponderous learned joke-word. It is derived from an earlier and now obsolete _quib _‘pun’, which appears to have been based on quibus...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Please expound and simplify the semantic progression behind "reduce"?

I don't understand the "semantic progression" that I emboldened below. The steps in the "semantic progression" feel too farfetched and unconnected. Can someone please fill in, and expound, the ste...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭

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How did kúklos ("circular") shift to signify "general"?

encyclopedia [16] Etymologically, encyclopedia means ‘general education’. It is a medieval formation, based on the Greek phrase egkúklios paideíā (egkúklios, a compound adjective formed ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Why are service or maintenance contracts called 'warranties', when they aren't Legal Warranties?

The term 'warranty' is used to distinguish between a term (warranty) and a mere representation, and also to distinguish between terms that give no right to termination upon breach (warranties) an...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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How can "lemma" be translated as "rede-ship" with merely Germanic etymons?

Attempts to fashion a purer form of literary English can be seen in the poetry of Edmund Spenser in the 16th century and William Barnes in the 19th century. Barnes’ arguments against borrowing ...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 3y ago by PSTH‭

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Vietnamese lệnh and Thai เลย

If I understand correctly both Vietnamese lệnh ("ley") and Thai เลย ("l'ey") are vague in both languages in the sense that they can have various meanings which depend on context but generally used ...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 3y ago by Jirka Hanika‭