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  1. #1
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    Correct Pronunciation

    For years, I have always said El Jins, even though it has a G in it.
    I picked up on the pronunciation when I saw The Temptations movie, where they wanted to be called after the Wristwatch company, Elgin, also pronounced with a soft G.

    recently a radio station played ‘Heaven…’ by the Elgins, and said it with a hard G, triggering a response from a listener telling him he’d pronounced it wrongly!
    His response was that He said he’d introduced them on stage, and asked them how to say it, and according to him they ‘poo poo’d’ saying it with a soft G.
    Now, I’ve done some research, first asking David Ruffin Jr how it was pronounced, I figured as his dad was in that original outfit wanting to call themselves after the watch, he would know.
    I then asked a long standing friend who is a bit of an authority to say the least, on things soul and Motown, and he told me they were introduced on an American TV show in 1966 as The El Jins!.

    I obviously put this forward on the forum where I first posted about the pronunciation, but no one would take my word!

    This is hopefully where you can help!
    is it said El Jins
    or El Gins [[with a hard G?

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
    Always the ElJins, as in the pronunciation a 'Gin' [& Tonic] for me Craig, and that's how the huge majority of people pronounce it.

    Of course, there are always exceptions, as you mentioned who use a hard G as in the word 'Good'.

    Cheers

    Paul
    Last edited by bradburger; 08-15-2021 at 05:44 PM.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Craig Strong View Post
    For years, I have always said El Jins, even though it has a G in it.
    I picked up on the pronunciation when I saw The Temptations movie, where they wanted to be called after the Wristwatch company, Elgin, also pronounced with a soft G.

    recently a radio station played ‘Heaven…’ by the Elgins, and said it with a hard G, triggering a response from a listener telling him he’d pronounced it wrongly!
    His response was that He said he’d introduced them on stage, and asked them how to say it, and according to him they ‘poo poo’d’ saying it with a soft G.
    Now, I’ve done some research, first asking David Ruffin Jr how it was pronounced, I figured as his dad was in that original outfit wanting to call themselves after the watch, he would know.
    I then asked a long standing friend who is a bit of an authority to say the least, on things soul and Motown, and he told me they were introduced on an American TV show in 1966 as The El Jins!.

    I obviously put this forward on the forum where I first posted about the pronunciation, but no one would take my word!

    This is hopefully where you can help!
    is it said El Jins
    or El Gins [[with a hard G?

    Thanks for your help!
    It's been brought up a lot of times here and from what I understand, it boils down to this: in the U.S. we have a city, a suburb of Chicago, named Elgin- pronounced EL-Jin. I live about an hour away from the city.

    There is a famous watch company that was founded there, The Elgin National Watch Company. The brand name was pronounced EL-Jin. I believe it was the watch company the early version of The Temptations planned to name themselves after; the name was synonymous with style, elegance and precision.

    The issue of pronunciation boils down to this being a specifically U.S. city and company with a specific pronunciation. It's never been pronounced with a hard "G" here.

    I guess it's a bit like our wanting to say SKedule in the States while I guess SHedule is how it is/was said in England. [[Now if that analogy is pretty shaky-and I KNOW it is- you get the gist [[Jist) of where I'm GoinG).
    Last edited by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance; 08-15-2021 at 05:32 PM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Craig Strong View Post
    For years, I have always said El Jins, even though it has a G in it.
    I picked up on the pronunciation when I saw The Temptations movie, where they wanted to be called after the Wristwatch company, Elgin, also pronounced with a soft G.

    recently a radio station played ‘Heaven…’ by the Elgins, and said it with a hard G, triggering a response from a listener telling him he’d pronounced it wrongly!
    His response was that He said he’d introduced them on stage, and asked them how to say it, and according to him they ‘poo poo’d’ saying it with a soft G.
    Now, I’ve done some research, first asking David Ruffin Jr how it was pronounced, I figured as his dad was in that original outfit wanting to call themselves after the watch, he would know.
    I then asked a long standing friend who is a bit of an authority to say the least, on things soul and Motown, and he told me they were introduced on an American TV show in 1966 as The El Jins!.

    I obviously put this forward on the forum where I first posted about the pronunciation, but no one would take my word!

    This is hopefully where you can help!
    is it said El Jins
    or El Gins [[with a hard G?

    Thanks for your help!
    I just realized I repeated a lot of what you said about the watch company. At any rate, the fact of being named after the watch company alone would dictate the correct pronunciation. It's not an either/or as nobody who lives in the States would ever get away with casually calling the town or watch company EL-Gin with a hard "G".

  5. #5
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    You know,for years i have wondered is it...ti-mex or timex or ro-lex or roll-ex...my brain is hurting!!

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    On the Christmas greetings, they say, "Merry Christmas!" and then Saundra Edwards says, "From the El-Jins." So... who knows what that DJ was talking about. The lead singer pronounced it the way most of us thought it was supposed to be pronounced.

  7. #7
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    From the booklet for the The Elgins two disc "The Motown Anthology":

    "Johnny Dawson came up with the name The Elgins which the Temptations had used, albeit briefly, prior to recording for Gordy's Miracle label. According to Johnny, the name, which is pronounced El-jins [and not with a hard 'g'], was adopted from his favourite brand of wristwatch".

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradburger View Post
    Always the ElJins, as in the pronunciation a 'Gin' [& Tonic] for me Craig, and that's how the huge majority of people pronounce it.

    Of course, there are always exceptions, as you mentioned who use a hard G as in the word 'Good'.

    Cheers

    Paul
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    I suppose there were people who pronounced The Minneapolis/Los Angeles Laker Hall-of-Fame basketball player, Elgin Baylor, "Elggin", with a hard "G". But that doesn't make it right. There are lots of people mispronouncing old-fashioned words incorrectly, as they read them in print, but almost no one with whom these young people have contact knows how to pronounce them correctly. The English and Dutch of my youth are both almost gone. I hear lots of people with videos on YouTube mispronouncing lots of words. What I can't figure out is how does someone who uses the antiquated word, "hence", at the same time, NOT know how to pronounce "hegemony", and says different THEN something, and doesn't know the difference between two, too, and to???? They jumped onto ONE antiquated word that they think makes them sound learned and sophisticated, but don't bother to develop a real vocabulary for daily use, and draw more negative attention to themselves by the incongruity of using an ancient word along with demonstrating that they, as an adult, haven't yet mastered the simple grammar in their native and only language.

    As Canada's own, Art Linkletter, said many times, "People Are Funny!"

    EVERY time I heard The Elgins announced, a "soft G" was used, even for The L.A. R&B group that sang "Uncle Sam's Man", and also for The New York group as well. I remember Elgin Watches, and their factory in Elgin, Illinois.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    I suppose there were people who pronounced The Minneapolis/Los Angeles Laker Hall-of-Fame basketball player, Elgin Baylor, "Elggin", with a hard "G". But that doesn't make it right. There are lots of people mispronouncing old-fashioned words incorrectly, as they read them in print, but almost no one with whom these young people have contact knows how to pronounce them correctly. The English and Dutch of my youth are both almost gone. I hear lots of people with videos on YouTube mispronouncing lots of words. What I can't figure out is how does someone who uses the antiquated word, "hence", at the same time, NOT know how to pronounce "hegemony", and says different THEN something, and doesn't know the difference between two, too, and to???? They jumped onto ONE antiquated word that they think makes them sound learned and sophisticated, but don't bother to develop a real vocabulary for daily use, and draw more negative attention to themselves by the incongruity of using an ancient word along with demonstrating that they, as an adult, haven't yet mastered the simple grammar in their native and only language.

    As Canada's own, Art Linkletter, said many times, "People Are Funny!"

    EVERY time I heard The Elgins announced, a "soft G" was used, even for The L.A. R&B group that sang "Uncle Sam's Man", and also for The New York group as well. I remember Elgin Watches, and their factory in Elgin, Illinois.
    All of which to say, there IS a correct pronunciation for Elgins, be it the city, the watch maker or the group.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    There are lots of people mispronouncing old-fashioned words incorrectly, as they read them in print, but almost no one with whom these young people have contact knows how to pronounce them correctly. The English and Dutch of my youth are both almost gone. I hear lots of people with videos on YouTube mispronouncing lots of words. What I can't figure out is how does someone who uses the antiquated word, "hence", at the same time, NOT know how to pronounce "hegemony", and says different THEN something, and doesn't know the difference between two, too, and to???? They jumped onto ONE antiquated word that they think makes them sound learned and sophisticated, but don't bother to develop a real vocabulary for daily use, and draw more negative attention to themselves by the incongruity of using an ancient word along with demonstrating that they, as an adult, haven't yet mastered the simple grammar in their native and only language.
    I believe this has been going on for decades, but it's been a gradual thing. The advent of texting seemed to greatly erode people's ability to spell, use the right word or even master basic syntax. Too. To. Two. Then. Than. They're. There. Their. Hardly anyone knows which is which anymore, nor does anyone care. I gotta learn to leave that alone. But, BUT, when I get an email or text that is so badly constructed it looks like gibberish, that's when I lose it.

    Old Man Rant #1,348,980 is over.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    I believe this has been going on for decades, but it's been a gradual thing. The advent of texting seemed to greatly erode people's ability to spell, use the right word or even master basic syntax. Too. To. Two. Then. Than. They're. There. Their. Hardly anyone knows which is which anymore, nor does anyone care. I gotta learn to leave that alone. But, BUT, when I get an email or text that is so badly constructed it looks like gibberish, that's when I lose it.

    Old Man Rant #1,348,980 is over.
    Decades is right.

    Even back in the 1960s, English school teachers were starting to favour self-expression over proper spelling and grammar.

    I appear to have some aptitude for languages, however, and so I ended up learning a lot about grammar during French classes instead. It's weird and shameful that I got be taught [taut, torte] French grammar but not the grammar of my first language.

    And now we are lucky if someone even knows that "th" doesn't sound like an "f" or "v". So now we get to play that smash hit by Len Barry entitled "One, Two, Free", and that old Tommy Roe hit, "Evva Unney".

    Sad, really.

    Old Man Rant #1,348,981 is over.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Sotosound View Post
    Decades is right.

    Even back in the 1960s, English school teachers were starting to favour self-expression over proper spelling and grammar.

    I appear to have some aptitude for languages, however, and so I ended up learning a lot about grammar during French classes instead. It's weird and shameful that I got be taught [taut, torte] French grammar but not the grammar of my first language.

    And now we are lucky if someone even knows that "th" doesn't sound like an "f" or "v". So now we get to play that smash hit by Len Barry entitled "One, Two, Free", and that old Tommy Roe hit, "Evva Unney".

    Sad, really.

    Old Man Rant #1,348,981 is over.
    "Ain't It A Sad Thing," Sotosound? Wait. Didn't R. Dean Taylor sing that?

  13. #13
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    I always pronounced it El Jins. Isn't some of this geographical or territorial pronunciations and spellings? For instance, in a post above, I noticed the word "favour" which is the way Canadians and British spell favor.

    And in NYC, we call Houston Street "How-stun Street" but we call the city of Houston , "Hue-stun"
    Go figure

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    Quote Originally Posted by milven View Post
    ...And in NYC, we call Houston Street "How-stun Street" but we call the city of Houston , "Hue-stun"
    Go figure
    Well, I always wondered why New Yorkers Houston differently when referring to the NYC Street and so I looked it up and found this:


    Why do New Yorkers pronounce Houston wrong?
    Houston St. in New York is pronounced houseton because it's named for William Houstoun. The street was spelled 'Houstoun' as well, but was changed at some point. Houston, the city in Texas that was named after Sam Houston, is still pronounced hyooston in New York.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    "Ain't It A Sad Thing," Sotosound? Wait. Didn't R. Dean Taylor sing that?
    He certainly did. Lol.

  16. #16
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    As Danman wrote above, Saundra says El-jins in her Christmas message [on Ultimate Motown Christmas] and she would know!

    I always thought it was pronounced El-jins though I can't even say why. For a long time I think I only saw the group's name written but never heard anyone say it.

    I can understand some uncertainty, especially for people outside the US. Elgin is pronounced El-gin [with a hard g] with regards to Lord Elgin and the Elgin Marbles, as in this BBC documentary. [I have also heard them called the El-jin Marbles but maybe that was by an American anchor reading a teleprompter on CNN?]



    There's a town in Scotland called Elgin, pronounced El-gin with a hard g. A Chicago Tribune article cites a historian who says that the city of Elgin, Illinois [mentioned in posts above] was named after [a song about] this town in Scotland.

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/...121-story.html

    Last edited by calvin; 08-16-2021 at 06:02 PM.

  17. #17
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    I never knew there was a dispute....

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    As Danman wrote above, Saundra says El-jins in her Christmas message [on Ultimate Motown Christmas] and she would know!

    I always thought it was pronounced El-jins though I can't even say why. For a long time I think I only saw the group's name written but never heard anyone say it.

    I can understand some uncertainty, especially for people outside the US. Elgin is pronounced El-gin [with a hard g] with regards to Lord Elgin and the Elgin Marbles, as in this BBC documentary. [I have also heard them called the El-jin Marbles but maybe that was by an American anchor reading a teleprompter on CNN?]



    There's a town in Scotland called Elgin, pronounced El-gin with a hard g. A Chicago Tribune article cites a historian who says that the city of Elgin, Illinois [mentioned in posts above] was named after [a song about] this town in Scotland.

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/...121-story.html

    You would be an EXCELLENT journalist. For real. I didn't know about Lord Elgin, The Elgin Marbles or even the town in Scotland. So I wonder if the States "imported" the name and we've been saying it wrong the entire time. It's not such a stretch considering all the other names we've butchered over the centuries.

    Celtics. In the US everybody pronounces it SELL- tics. Only in the last few years did I find it's actually pronounced with a hard C.

    Trevor. Isn't this a British name? This is my first name but for the longest time in grade school, some would pronounce it TREE-vur. And that was coming from the ADULTS. In fact, there is a town near where I live named Trevor. Trevor, Wisconsin. They pronounce it TREE-vur. I can never go there.

    So this is intriguing. Could it be that we in the US have been pronouncing Elgin wrong all this time as with the word Celtic?

    Hey and around and around it goes...
    Last edited by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance; 08-16-2021 at 09:32 PM.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    So I wonder if the States "imported" the name...
    According to the City of Elgin [IL] website, the city was named after a Scottish hymn called "The Song of Elgin", which is about the Scottish town. No one is sure today how that town was named, but websites on its history say it’s believed to be named after Helgy, a Norwegian general who overran the area early in the 10th century and may have founded a settlement at the site. Helgy, I guess, was named by his parents [LOL], it’s a first name that meant “holy” in their version of Old Norse, and that word came from somewhere...

    So it seems The Elgins took over an earlier name of The Temptations, who had named their group after the watchmaker, which was named after a city in Illinois, which was named after a song about a town in Scotland, which may have been named after a Viking general.

    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    Could it be that we in the US have been pronouncing Elgin wrong all this time...?
    It's common [usual?] for g to be pronounced like j when it starts a syllable and is followed by an i, e, or y. That's true for "gin" so I think it feels “natural” to pronounce it El-jin. Perhaps the Illinois city was first pronounced with a hard g by its Scottish settlers, but everyone else kept calling it El-jin so they just gave up and went with the flow? A lot of immigrants to the US accepted and adopted such changes to their own surnames rather than insisting on the “correct” pronunciation. In any case, saying El-jin for the Illinois city is right because people agree on it.

    It's not always the Americans who changed something where there are differences. In the 18th century, “gotten” was the past participle of get in both Britain and the US [get / got / gotten]. Today, “gotten” is still correct in the US but it’s “got” in Britain [get / got / got]. This change caught on in 19th century Britain and became standard. This can be true for some pronunciations as well, there have been huge changes in British pronunciation since the American Revolution.

    Language is changing all the time and some things that are considered “wrong” are later accepted as “right.”

    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    Celtics. In the US everybody pronounces it SELL- tics. Only in the last few years did I find it's actually pronounced with a hard C.
    It used to be pronounced with a soft C in English but academics changed it because they wanted it to sound more like the original Greek word than a French word [many wanted to change the spelling to Kelt as well]. The wide acceptance of this change is fairly recent - I found this quote from Fowler's 1926 Dictionary of Modern English Usage on "Celt[ic]": "The spelling C-, & the pronunciation s-, are the established ones, & no useful purpose seems to be served by the substitution of k-."

    The football club in Glasgow is still called SELL-tic. The club's founding [1887] predates wide acceptance of the change in pronunciation.

    The bottom line is, for a lot of words/names in English, you have to hear what’s correct [or see it written phonetically] before you can know.

    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    Trevor. Isn't this a British name? This is my first name but for the longest time in grade school, some would pronounce it TREE-vur. And that was coming from the ADULTS. In fact, there is a town near where I live named Trevor. Trevor, Wisconsin. They pronounce it TREE-vur. I can never go there.
    LOL, don't go with the flow on that one - TREE-vur sounds ridiculous.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-18-2021 at 05:55 AM.

  20. #20
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    In the Uk, always with the hard 'g', coz we'd never heard of the the El Jin watch. We had the Elgin [[hard g) marbles and the Scottish city of Elgin [[hard g), so it was obvious the way we were going to go

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    Surely, Elgins is pronounced:
    Downbeats....

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    Quote Originally Posted by soulwally View Post
    In the Uk, always with the hard 'g', coz we'd never heard of the the El Jin watch. We had the Elgin [[hard g) marbles and the Scottish city of Elgin [[hard g), so it was obvious the way we were going to go
    And we all did.

    Language does evolve, but I will probably never accept Vee Undispu'ed Troof, or "You're Ver First, Ver Last, My Everyfing", or "Fink" by Areefa Franklin.

    Great fred, viss!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by snakepit View Post
    Surely, Elgins is pronounced:
    Downbeats....
    I don’t think The Downbeats was a good name and they were right to want to change it, but they could have come up with something better than The Elgins.

    When I first saw the name The Elgins, I thought it might be a family name, like The Jacksons. When I saw that it wasn't I didn't think about it much, I figured it was just some name they came up with [like Vandellas]. It didn’t occur to me that they had named themselves after a brand of wristwatch!

    The Temptations mini series makes fun of that name in the scene where the group goes to Hitsville to meet BG. First David Ruffin [“Elgins? Like the wristwatch?” ... pause, David and Jimmy Ruffin look at each other like 'wtf', then ... “Cool”], then Martha Reeves ["Huh like the watch?"], and finally Otis comes out and tells the others that he was told to "wait outside and come up with a new name.”

    That scene starts at 33:00, I don’t know how to embed the video to make it start at that point.

    Last edited by calvin; 08-18-2021 at 09:08 AM.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    According to the City of Elgin [IL] website, the city was named after a Scottish hymn called "The Song of Elgin", which is about the Scottish town. No one is sure today how that town was named, but websites on its history say it’s believed to be named after Helgy, a Norwegian general who overran the area early in the 10th century and may have founded a settlement at the site. Helgy, I guess, was named by his parents [LOL], it’s a first name that meant “holy” in their version of Old Norse, and that word came from somewhere...

    So it seems The Elgins took over an earlier name of The Temptations, who had named their group after the watchmaker, which was named after a city in Illinois, which was named after a song about a town in Scotland, which may have been named after a Viking general.



    It's common [usual?] for g to be pronounced like j when it starts a syllable and is followed by an i, e, or y. That's true for "gin" so I think it feels “natural” to pronounce it El-jin. Perhaps the Illinois city was first pronounced with a hard g by its Scottish settlers, but everyone else kept calling it El-jin so they just gave up and went with the flow? A lot of immigrants to the US accepted and adopted such changes to their own surnames rather than insisting on the “correct” pronounciation. In any case, saying El-jin for the Illinois city is right because people agree on it.

    It's not always the Americans who changed something where there are differences. In the 18th century, “gotten” was the past participle of get in both Britain and the US [get / got / gotten]. Today, “gotten” is still correct in the US but it’s “got” in Britain [get / got / got]. This change caught on in 19th century Britain and became standard. This can be true for some pronounciations as well, there have been huge changes in British pronounciation since the American Revolution.

    Language is changing all the time and some things that are considered “wrong” are later accepted as “right.”



    It used to be pronounced with a soft C in English but academics changed it because they wanted it to sound more like the original Greek word than a French word [many wanted to change the spelling to Kelt as well]. The wide acceptance of this change is fairly recent - I found this quote from Fowler's 1926 Dictionary of Modern English Usage on "Celt[ic]": "The spelling C-, & the pronunciation s-, are the established ones, & no useful purpose seems to be served by the substitution of k-."

    The football club in Glasgow is still called SELL-tic. The club's founding [1887] predates wide acceptance of the change in pronounciation.

    The bottom line is, for a lot of words/names in English, you have to hear what’s correct [or see it written phonetically] before you can know.



    LOL, don't go with the flow on that one - TREE-vur sounds ridiculous.
    You are really "bringing it home" with this thread, Calvin. I don't know if you're a history buff, educator, writer or all of the above but I'm learning very much here. This thread has taken a very interesting turn. This subject has been discussed here before but this time around seems a lot more interesting. I'm definitely watching the videos you attached.

    Never thought a Motown group's name would bring such enlightenment!

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    Last night, I was watching a science documentary on YouTube, on which one of the reporters was an American in his twenties. He pronounced the English word "abode" [[meaning, of course, "place of residence"), as: "ahh-bo-Daayyyy". That demonstrates very well how The English language is degrading in utility, by losing vocabulary. Maybe he got it confused with the adopted Spanish word "adobe". An American who probably finished all 12 years of public school, and likely finished 4 years of undergraduate university, and as a narrator on a history documentary, probably also has a masters degree, never heard of "a silent "E"?????? I understand that a LOT of people HATE the idea of learning rules of grammar. But, someone who narrates academic documentary films???? And how does someone reside in USA for more than a few weeks and not learn the difference in meaning between the word "to" and "too"???? - Especially when it's ones own native language and he's attended 14-16 years of education there, and never been anywhere else with a different language to confuse him? It's IMPOSSIBLE!

    Similarly, I've noticed several American narrators on history documentaries pronouncing the word "hegemony" as "Hedj-ehh-Mohnneee" [[Upper case letters indicate the stressed accent points). In the 1940s and 1950s in Canada, we pronounced that word as "hedj-EHH-monee", and I would swear that Americans did as well. I'm not positive about The Brits at that time, because they often use weird pronunciation [[weird to us, but I concede that it was THEIR language first-so who are WE to correct them). About half The Brits on YouTube history documentaries use the incorrect North American pronunciation, and the other half use the standard North American pronunciation. My official [[British) Oxford Universal Dictionary of The English Language from 1932 says that the official way to pronounce the word coined in 1567, based on the Greek word, Hegemon, is hegg-ehh-Monee [[using a hard "G", and stress on the "M" 2nd to last syllable). But, I contend that it is ridiculous for a 24 year old Ohioan to use an incorrect British pronunciation, rather than the official US pronunciation, especially when all THE OTHER 4,000 of the words that person uses are NOT pronounced The British way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    You are really "bringing it home" with this thread, Calvin. I don't know if you're a history buff, educator, writer or all of the above but I'm learning very much here. This thread has taken a very interesting turn. This subject has been discussed here before but this time around seems a lot more interesting. I'm definitely watching the videos you attached.


    Never thought a Motown group's name would bring such enlightenment!
    Well I'm glad you appreciated the posts. I knew something about several of the things I mentioned but of course I looked stuff up as well [like the town of Elgin possibly being named after a Viking named Helgy]. I knew about the change in pronunciation of Celtic but I had to look up details on why and when that happened. I wanted to answer with more than just saying people still use a soft c when referring to the football club.

    A bit more detail on that last point - what I found was that some academics began using a hard c in Celt in the 18th century to bring the word back to its Latin/Greek root and it became common in academia during the 19th century. Over time, more and more people heard it that way and it's believed that it gradually caught on because people thought it was the "educated" way to say it. I suppose for the Celtic football club fans still saying it with a soft c, it's about tradition - and I guess they would use a hard c except when referring to their club.

    By the way, I posted the video on the town of Elgin just so one could hear a local pronouncing the name of the town. I only watched the beginning of it, it's explaining some planned changes in the town's infrastructure and such - mainly of interest to those who live there.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-19-2021 at 06:47 AM.

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    Pronounciation? Isn't it pronunciation?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sotosound View Post
    Pronounciation? Isn't it pronunciation?
    Yes you're right and I did that 5 times! Thanks for pointing it out, I've gone back and corrected it. Apparently it's not only the young who are letting the English language go down the drain!

    Since spell checkers became common, I’ve had some cases where I’ve really misspelled a word, ie it was not just a typo [but there was no spell checker here to save me]. I wonder in these cases if I’ve been spelling the word incorrectly my entire life or if I forgot the correct spelling because I haven't written the word for ages.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-19-2021 at 04:45 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    Last night, I was watching a science documentary on YouTube, on which one of the reporters was an American in his twenties. He pronounced the English word "abode" [[meaning, of course, "place of residence"), as: "ahh-bo-Daayyyy". That demonstrates very well how The English language is degrading in utility, by losing vocabulary. Maybe he got it confused with the adopted Spanish word "adobe". An American who probably finished all 12 years of public school, and likely finished 4 years of undergraduate university, and as a narrator on a history documentary, probably also has a masters degree, never heard of "a silent "E"?????? I understand that a LOT of people HATE the idea of learning rules of grammar. But, someone who narrates academic documentary films???? And how does someone reside in USA for more than a few weeks and not learn the difference in meaning between the word "to" and "too"???? - Especially when it's ones own native language and he's attended 14-16 years of education there, and never been anywhere else with a different language to confuse him? It's IMPOSSIBLE!

    Similarly, I've noticed several American narrators on history documentaries pronouncing the word "hegemony" as "Hedj-ehh-Mohnneee" [[Upper case letters indicate the stressed accent points). In the 1940s and 1950s in Canada, we pronounced that word as "hedj-EHH-monee", and I would swear that Americans did as well. I'm not positive about The Brits at that time, because they often use weird pronunciation [[weird to us, but I concede that it was THEIR language first-so who are WE to correct them). About half The Brits on YouTube history documentaries use the incorrect North American pronunciation, and the other half use the standard North American pronunciation. My official [[British) Oxford Universal Dictionary of The English Language from 1932 says that the official way to pronounce the word coined in 1567, based on the Greek word, Hegemon, is hegg-ehh-Monee [[using a hard "G", and stress on the "M" 2nd to last syllable). But, I contend that it is ridiculous for a 24 year old Ohioan to use an incorrect British pronunciation, rather than the official US pronunciation, especially when all THE OTHER 4,000 of the words that person uses are NOT pronounced The British way.
    I think you are probably right that he confused abode with adobe. Saying it as "ahh-bo-Daayyyy" is bad to the point that many might not even understand what he meant.

    When I was 20 [a long time ago, I don't know why I even remember this], a friend of mine the same age said a word that sounded like “all-bite.” I didn't understand but I didn't ask about it. After he said it a second time I thought, from the context, that he meant "albeit" - I asked and, sure enough, he spelled "albeit." He knew the word - how to use it and how to spell it - but he didn’t know how to pronounce it. It happens, it's not new and I’ve probably done the same. Perhaps it's more prevalent today, I don't know.

    We learn a lot of words from reading, understanding their meaning from context. Many of these words are seldom used in everyday speech so we might not hear them. When I was young I [sometimes] looked up such words in a dictionary to see how they should be pronounced. Today one can hear them online.

    Regarding hegemony, you can hear it with a soft and hard g here:
    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hegemony

    I think the g is soft in the US and hard in the UK. Both sound good to me. They give a third pronunciation that they haven't recorded: ˈhe-jə-ˌmō-nē, with a long o. I think that one is included in this video, it sounds a bit strange to me:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QrfQ7Z8Qkm8

    The second one here is yet another variation, it also sounds a bit strange to me:
    https://www.macmillandictionary.com/...itish/hegemony

    I think people would understand any of these, which is the main thing.

    To be honest, I’m not consistent in sticking with US or British English pronunciations. I’ve lived in both the US and UK and in two non-English-speaking countries. My accent is American because I grew up there but, as I currently live in the UK and I’m a citizen of this country, I’ve adopted some - but only some - of the British pronunciations without trying to change my accent. I guess I might be most likely to hear a word like “hegemony” in a tv documentary, say about WW2, and that documentary could be American, British, Canadian, etc. How I heard that word pronounced most often or perhaps most recently could decide how I would say it - I would just say it without really thinking whether I was saying it the American or British way.

    In some other cases I would say a word differently depending on where I am, for example aluminium/aluminum.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-18-2021 at 03:49 PM.

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    I would always say "aluminium" to be consistent with all the other metals that end in -ium.
    I see that "sulphur" is now spelled [or should that be spelt?] "sulfur".

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    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    I would always say "aluminium" to be consistent with all the other metals that end in -ium.
    I see that "sulphur" is now spelled [or should that be spelt?] "sulfur".
    Then why not say "platinium", pla-TIN-ee-um? I know there are many more ending in -ium, but there are a few ending in -num as well. It seems arbitrary to me so I can go either way on it. Of course for most of the world it's aluminium, but in the US or Canada I wouldn't want to have to explain that after saying it.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-19-2021 at 06:45 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    Then why not say "platinium", pla-TIN-ee-um? I know there are many more ending in -ium, but there are a few ending in -num as well. It seems arbitrary to me so I can go either way on it. Of course for most of the world it's aluminium, but in the US or Canada I wouldn't want to have to explain that after saying it.
    Do you know I forgot all about platinum...not that I've ever bought any.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    I would always say "aluminium" to be consistent with all the other metals that end in -ium.
    I see that "sulphur" is now spelled [or should that be spelt?] "sulfur".
    It should be spelled "s-p-e-l-t", because it is the past participle of the verb "to spell". But, that has been dropped by recent and current Americans. But, the rest of The World still uses it, and it was used correctly by Americans when I was in my younger days. And yes, sulphur was also the correct spelling in Canada, when I was young. The Americans have been slowly but relentlessly making changes to The English language over the last 400 years, and because of their cultural media dominance, the rest of The World have[[in rest of World) has [[in USA) been slowly adopting those changes, one by one, in different places, at different times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
    It should be spelled "s-p-e-l-t", because it is the past participle of the verb "to spell". But, that has been dropped by recent and current Americans. But, the rest of The World still uses it, and it was used correctly by Americans when I was in my younger days. And yes, sulphur was also the correct spelling in Canada, when I was young. The Americans have been slowly but relentlessly making changes to The English language over the last 400 years, and because of their cultural media dominance, the rest of The World have[[in rest of World) has [[in USA) been slowly adopting those changes, one by one, in different places, at different times.
    While I agree with you that American influence is advancing relentlessly [as British influence once was, in a different way], the specific details of your examples are more complicated.

    There are many cases where British English changed after the American Revolution and the Americans kept an old form, for example "get / got / gotten" vs "get / got / got". [But it’s still forget / forgot / forgotten in the UK]. Did the Brits damage the language by making that and other changes?

    The 19th century was a time of major change in British pronunciation and there were spelling changes as well. Many linguists will tell you that pronunciation in British English has changed more than in American English since the Revolution. Where there are differences, you can't blame Americans for changes that the British made.

    Some of the differences did, of course, originate in the US. Noah Webster changed some spellings deliberately in his books on the language, for example dropping the "u" in colour, favour, etc. He did that to differentiate between the sounds of those words and the "ower" sound in words like hour and sour, which he left unchanged. These changes were adopted in the US so they are correct there.

    “Spelled” is not an American change. Both “spelled” and “spelt” were used in Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries and it was in the 19th century that “spelt” became more popular. Both were used in the US but Americans finally settled on “spelled." “Spelled” is widely used in the UK today, including by the BBC. Maybe that's due to American influence [I don't know] but Americans didn't change it and then force that change onto the UK.

    The root of "sulfur" is the Latin sulpur, but at some point an “h” was added in the mistaken belief that its origin was Greek. Some British academics pushed for it to become sulfur before the American Revolution and by that time both forms were common in Britain. It was standardised to “sulphur” in 19th century Britain but Americans eventually settled on "sulfur."

    We know about many of the pronunciation changes that later became standard because British scholars described them in writing - often complaining about them!

    Going further back, it’s known that in Shakespeare’s time Brits pronounced the “r” at the end of words [as in “fire”] and before a consonant [as in “hard”]. Pronunciation of this “r” gradually weakened and then disappeared in southern England by the early 19th century but held out in other parts of Britain until the second half of that century.

    Some people who left England for the American colonies and then returned after the Revolution were surprised at how much the language had changed in the years they had been away, the continued dropping of the “r” being one example.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-21-2021 at 08:51 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    While I agree with you that American influence is advancing relentlessly [as British influence once was, in a different way, including giving birth to the US], when you talk about specific changes it’s often more complicated.

    There are many cases where British English changed after the American Revolution and the Americans kept an old form.
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    Yes, I understand that languages are living entities, and change as they are spoken. My problem is not so much languages changing over the decades, but mainly being changed it ways that makes them less understandable, or less useful in communication from one person to another. I am all for US, Canadian, and UK English changing their official spellings every so often [[75 to 100 years or so), as we have done during my lifetime in The Netherlands and Denmark. English is still using spellings that match pronunciations as old as from The Old English period from 800-1050. Luckily for me, I understand Dutch and Frisian, so I understand why "enough" is spelt the way it is and from where a lot of other ancient spellings come. But, it would be simpler and nicer for English learners, if enough could be spelt thusly: "enuff", and there wouldn't be 8 different sounds resulting from the amalgam of the letters, "ough". And the sound, "ow" as in the word, cow, would ALWAYS be spelt: "ow", except when it would need to be stressed more. Then we would add another "w". Spanish is so user -friendly, because the rules are such that once the learner learns those phonetics, he or she can spell almost any word despite never having seen it. Dutch [[thanks to the changes introduced soon after WWII, and the more recent ones [[changing "sch" to "s" when the old sound has dropped out of the word), is also extremely user-friendly as far as spelling goes.

    I just don't like having lots of adjectives dropping out of use, making it more difficult to describe gradations of degree of qualities, or phrases changing in meaning to the exact opposite of their original, logical meaning, and spitting in the eye of logic, such as "I COULD care less!", "instead of I couldn't care less!", just because a lot more people are lazy, and don't want to have to pronounce one more one-syllable word, or they are too ignorant to know that it makes no sense logically, or they HATED having to learn grammar in school, and are deliberately saying it incorrectly, to act rebelliously against the society that forced that unnecessary work upon them, or because they just feel that speaking the phrase correctly is not important to The World's existence or Mankind's history [[and, of course they are correct in that belief).

    But, I believe there are wayyyyyy too many misunderstandings between people that lead to strife; and degrading language as a communication tool just enhances that problem.

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    Yes I get you. I was living in Germany when they had the 1996 spelling reform [agreed upon by Austria, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein as well], meant to simplify spelling. I guess you are familiar with it as you also lived in Germany. It was the reform that, among other things, called for the use of -ss after a short vowel instead of -ß, so "daß" became "dass".

    English spelling really is a mess, I think because of the different foreign influences and the resulting lack of consistent spelling rules.

    I mentioned Webster above, he wanted to take small steps - but only small else they wouldn’t be accepted [and some of his changes weren’t] - in simplifying spelling and making it more consistent. You mentioned -ough, one of his changes was “plough” to “plow." Still, he could have done more with all those -ough words!

    Webster's making spelling a bit easier to learn was not a bad thing, especially considering how common illiteracy was back then. Even today, it wouldn’t be bad if English [and American, etc] kids didn’t have to spend so much time simply learning how to spell words, something that is so much easier in languages like German or Spanish.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-19-2021 at 09:54 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    Yes I get you. I was living in Germany when they had the 1996 spelling reform [agreed upon by Austria, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein as well], meant to simplify spelling. I guess you are familiar with it as you also lived in Germany. It was the reform that, among other things, called for the use of -ss after a short vowel instead of -ß, so "daß" became "dass".

    English spelling really is a mess, I think because of the different foreign influences and the resulting lack of consistent spelling rules.

    I mentioned Webster above, he wanted to take small steps - but only small else they wouldn’t be accepted [and some of his changes weren’t] - in simplifying spelling and making it more consistent. You mentioned -ough, one of his changes was “plough” to “plow." Still, he could have done more with all those -ough words!

    Webster's making spelling a bit easier to learn was not a bad thing, especially considering how common illiteracy was back then. Even today, it wouldn’t be bad if English [and American, etc] kids didn’t have to spend so much time simply learning how to spell words, something that is so much easier in languages like German or Spanish.
    Plough was spelt as I just typed it when I was growing up in Canada. I'm not sure what the official spelling is now, but I never heard that they changed it.

    But I go mainly by what I learned as a youngster. And Canadian spellings are a good compromise for someone who writes English for a continental European audience, Americans, Canadians, British and Australian readers. For Danish Disney we need to write the scripts in English for English language versions to be sold in India [[India's Lingua Franca), The German English reading programme, and so the script can be translated into all the other European, African, and Asian languages because no one working in those countries' Disney franchise publishing offices can understand Danish. Almost all of the English taught in all those countries is British English, rather than American.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
    Plough was spelt as I just typed it when I was growing up in Canada. I'm not sure what the official spelling is now, but I never heard that they changed it.
    As I wrote, it was Webster who changed it to “plow” in the US. His changes were not generally adopted in Canada, which was a British possession. A few other changes he made in the US:

    color for colour, favor for favour, etc [leaving -our for the sound in hour, sour]
    center for centre, theater for theatre
    mold for mould [like old, bold, cold, ...]
    draft for draught [like raft or craft, leaving -aught for the sound in caught, taught]
    magic for magick [because "magical" had no "k"]

    He is also given credit [or you can blame him if you like] for “jail” instead of “gaol.” Both existed in English but “gaol” was the accepted spelling, Webster went with “jail” [like fail, nail]. It caught on quickly in the US and gradually elsewhere.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-21-2021 at 10:31 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
    It should be spelled "s-p-e-l-t", because it is the past participle of the verb "to spell". But, that has been dropped by recent and current Americans. But, the rest of The World still uses it, and it was used correctly by Americans when I was in my younger days.
    If "spell" can only be an irregular verb [spell / spelt / spelt], shouldn't that be:

    "It should be spelt 's-p-e-l-t' ..." ?

    One wouldn't write or say, "It should be builded..."

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    As a UK member, it is, and always will be Elgins with a hard G as in the Scottish town and the Elgin Marbles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    If "spell" can only be an irregular verb [spell / spelt / spelt], shouldn't that be:

    "It should be spelt 's-p-e-l-t' ..." ?

    One wouldn't write or say, "It should be builded..."
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    I agree. But, isn't straight past tense for "to build", was built? So what is your point?

    To my memory, when I grew up in Manitoba, we were taught that the past participle of the verb to spell [[a word, using alphabetical characters) was "s-p-e-l-t", whereas the past participle of the verb "to spell" [[meaning to relieve someone of a duty or job shift)
    was "s-p-e-l-l-e-d" - same as the straight past.

    AS I remember, both the straight past and past participles of the verb, "to build" were "built".

    I can't tell you why they differed. We learned what our teachers taught us, and when we asked about logical inconsistencies in the language they didn't know the answers, so they said, "because those are the rules", just the way parents answer their little child when they don't know the answer, or don't want the child to know the real answer.

    As you pointed out above, a language is a lot more related to how the bulk of its speakers use it than it is to official national rules for its use. So, there were always some people using the same word in different ways, or spelling the same word differently.

    As far as I can understand your comment about the verb "to build", is that its past straight past form and its past participle are the same, [[built), where as the verb "to spell [[a word) doesn't vary between those 2 forms, having "spelled" for both usages in USA. And is your point that the two words should behave the same way, having both forms be the same - so the past participle should also be "spelled" in Canada and Britain?

    Or did I use the past participle incorrectly for the tense in the sentence "It should be spelt 's-p-e-l-t' ..." ? Is that "the imperative"? And should it use the form, "spelled"?
    Last edited by robb_k; 08-20-2021 at 12:44 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    I agree. But, isn't straight past tense for "to build", was built? So what is your point?

    I'm confused about what you are trying to get across.
    Please don't take it the wrong way, I'm just pointing out that at the same time that you wrote that the participle must be "spelt" [ie it's irregular], you used the participle for "spell" as a regular verb. I could of course be wrong but I think this is passive with a modal verb, so using the participle.

    Basically, if "to spell" [used with this meaning, not the other you mentioned] were always irregular, there would be no "spelled" [with that meaning] just as there is no "builded" - it would be "it should be spelt...", just as it's "it should be built..."

    "To spell" as an irregular verb is [spell / spelt / spelt], as a regular verb it's [spell / spelled / spelled].
    Last edited by calvin; 08-20-2021 at 03:20 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    Please don't take it the wrong way, I'm just pointing out that at the same time that you said that the participle must be spelt [ie it's irregular], you used the participle for "spell" as a regular verb. I could of course be wrong but I think this is passive with a modal verb, so using the participle.
    I'm no expert on grammar. I can't remember all the rules. I only remember how I am used to writing and speaking. We take in what we learn hearing people speak and from reading, and internalise it. Some people are exposed to, and/or learn the rules more solidly than others. So, as you seem to know more about the rules pertaining to regular vs. irregular verbs, I'll defer to your knowledge. I, probably like most people, just go with what I instinctively "remember" as being what I've always been saying or writing. But I am in my mid 70s, and my memory is clouded, and more and more I am being shocked, that truths that I THINK I thought all my life have been changed behind my back, when I wasn't looking. But, it could possibly be that I made incorrect assumptions and/or learned those points incorrectly, in the first place.

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    Well, I misspelled "pronunciation" repeatedly above. I wonder if I've been misspelling that word for my entire life or if I just forgot it, slipped up, or whatever. I don't know. [Not that it's a word I've written often, at least not before this thread!] Funny too, the thread is titled "Correct Pronunciation", so how did I miss that?
    Last edited by calvin; 08-20-2021 at 01:30 PM.

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    Somehow, because I've been hearing the sentence in my head, I can see that you are correct. I ALWAYS write, "It should be SPELLED, thusly." So, why would the usage change when the word "thusly" is added? Now, "It should be spelt, sounds very wrong. Maybe I was influenced by the "s-p-e-l-t" being adjacent to it?

    I also notice that things I thought were one way all my life are now different. But maybe that is just neurons misfiring?

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    In UK, the BBC has decided in its arrogant wisdom the plural of certain latin words adopted directly into English that end in "um" shall no longer end in "a" but in "s"

    Thus

    Stadiums instead of Stadia

    And to think that we Brits are threatened with a criminal record if we fail to pay the BBC Licence Fee which is essentially a non avoidable impost.

    They are even threatening 90 year olds with prison for not paying!

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    Quote Originally Posted by fatmaninthethirdrow View Post
    In UK, the BBC has decided in its arrogant wisdom the plural of certain latin words adopted directly into English that end in "um" shall no longer end in "a" but in "s"

    Thus

    Stadiums instead of Stadia

    And to think that we Brits are threatened with a criminal record if we fail to pay the BBC Licence Fee which is essentially a non avoidable impost.

    They are even threatening 90 year olds with prison for not paying!
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    That's a bit extreme in my book.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    As you pointed out above, a language is a lot more related to how the bulk of its speakers use it than it is to official national rules for its use. So, there were always some people using the same word in different ways, or spelling the same word differently.
    Yes after all this, that's really my point.

    Some languages, or countries, have official bodies that set the standards - such as de Nederlandse Taalunie for Dutch in the Netherlands and Belgium, which I’m sure you know well. I’m pretty sure that their standards are taught in the schools and used by, for example, news organisations, but how closely does spoken Dutch follow their standards? [Or, first of all, do they set standards for pronunciaton or only grammar and spelling?] How different is spoken Dutch in Belgium from Dutch in the Netherlands, for example - is it just a different accent or quite different pronunciations?

    The English language doesn’t have anything like this, not even just for the UK or US [don’t know about Canada, Australia, ...]. One usually refers to a source, such as a certain dictionary or grammar book, or perhaps an organisation such as the BBC that sets its own guidelines, as here:
    Quote Originally Posted by fatmaninthethirdrow View Post
    In UK, the BBC has decided in its arrogant wisdom the plural of certain latin words adopted directly into English that end in "um" shall no longer end in "a" but in "s"
    So in many cases, there is not just one “correct” way of spelling/pronouncing a word, different versions can be considered correct [if only regionally] or at least acceptable. As we see with “to spell”, we can even have a verb that is accepted as both regular and irregular [it can be either in the UK, but it’s only regular in the US]. I’m not sure if they always use it this way, but here’s one example I found immediately where the BBC uses it as a regular verb:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-englan...shire-56563610

    Additionally, the language is always changing. In many cases, changes which became standard were considered incorrect when they first appeared, but people continued with the usage despite that and they caught on more widely.

    Of course, as you wrote above, some things are just wrong - for example confusing “to”, “too”, and “two”.
    Last edited by calvin; 08-21-2021 at 04:03 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    Yes after all this, that's really my point.

    Some languages, or countries, have official bodies that set the standards - such as de Nederlandse Taalunie for Dutch in the Netherlands and Belgium, which I’m sure you know well. I’m pretty sure that their standards are taught in the schools and used by, for example, news organisations, but how closely does spoken Dutch follow their standards? [Or, first of all, do they set standards for pronunciaton or only grammar and spelling?] How different is spoken Dutch in Belgium from Dutch in the Netherlands, for example - is it just a different accent or quite different pronunciations?

    The English language doesn’t have anything like this, not even just for the UK or US [don’t know about Canada, Australia, ...]. One usually refers to a source, such as a certain dictionary or grammar book, or perhaps an organisation such as the BBC that sets its own guidelines, as here:


    So in many cases, there is not just one “correct” way of spelling/pronouncing a word, different versions can be considered correct [if only regionally] or at least acceptable. As we see with “to spell”, we can even have a verb that is accepted as both regular and irregular [it can be either in the UK, but it’s only regular in the US]. I’m not sure if they always use it this way, but here’s one example I found immediately where the BBC uses it as a regular verb:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-englan...shire-56563610

    Additionally, the language is always changing. In many cases, changes which became standard were considered incorrect when they first appeared, but people continued with the usage and it caught on despite that.

    Of course, as you wrote above, some things are just wrong - for example confusing “to”, “too”, and “two”.
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    Flemish[[basically the southern Dutch dialects) is basically a dialectical difference from Standard Dutch [[Hollands)[[derived from The Amsterdam Noord Hollands dialect). There are several different dialects within The spectrum of The entire population of Dutch speakers, and also another distinct language, Frisian [[dialect of Westfries [[West Frisian). In most of The west, we have Hollands [[although the people speak different enough in the south [[Zuid Holland), from the way they do in the north [[Noord Holland), for the educated ear to notice. West Frisian[[Westfries) in the north of the country and the northeast, Gronings in the far eastern northeast [[near Groningen)[[similar to the Plattdeutsch on The German side of the border), Limburgs [[in limburg, near the southeastern border, between Germany's Rhineland, and northeast Belgium), and the general southern area Noord Brabant speaks differently, as well something between Hollands and Flemish dialects of Zuid [[south) Brabant.

    All these areas have their own dialects from Medieval times, which a fair amount of older people speak, which have some of their own words not used anymore in Standard Dutch, as well as voicing some vowels and consonants differently from the national language, and they use several phrases unique to their dialect. And despite the dialects being different from that particular area's [[province's) way of speaking Standard Dutch, the latter sounds different from Standard Dutch spoken in other provinces, because not only do the original dialect speech patterns sneak into those speakers' voicing of the sounds, but local words, phrases, and way of expressing something show up in their version of Standard Dutch. This is similar to the differences in the Yorkshire dialect strewn with Danish words, and Northumbrian dialect strewn with Danish and Scots words and phrasing, and people from those areas speaking Standard UK English, which has a lot less of the old-fashioned and "foreign" vocabulary and phrasing, but still has some borrowings from the dialect, as well as a heavy dialectical way of pronouncing vowels and consonants [[dipthongs, glottal stops, and the like).

    Our Dutch Disney Publications has published Donald Duck comic books in Westfries language, and Limburgs Dutch Dialect, and German Disney Comic books has printed books in Hamburger [[Hamburg Area) Plattdeutsch [[Lower Saxon) Dialet, as well as Frankfürt [[Rhenish Frankish) Dialect, Bayerish [[Bavarian) Dialect, and Schweizerttüch [[Swiss German) dialect.

    Belgian Flemish has been diverging from Standard Dutch since Belgium was separated from The Northern nine provinces in The 17th Century by The Hapsburg's reconquest. But recently, academia in Belgium has been printing everything in Standard Netherlands [[Hollands) Dutch. The various Flemish accents in speaking the former Standard Flemish [[Brussels dialect) are different enough to detect which is which, and ALL of them sound very different from Standard Dutch, just as English people in Devon, Cornwall, Kent, and GLA sound very different speaking Standard UK English, from people in Northumbria, Yorkshire, Leeds, Manchester, and Liverpool.

    To me many of the Flemish accents are coarser and Gruffer, where some Dutch accents have more gutterals, but are softer in other ways. Flemish also has several common phrases Dutch speakers don't use, and sounds they don't use, and vise versa. But, reading standard Flemish was never difficult for a Dutchman. And over the last 20-30 years it has become easier, as they seem to have weeded out the Flemishisms to bring them closer together.

    Spoken Dutch doesn't always follow the official standards just as regional standard "national language" speech in ANY country differs from one region to another. I never heard of any Official Standards for pronunciation, only spelling and grammar. But, they do, like all European languages, have pronunciation guides in official dictionaries, just as The Oxford Universal Dictionary for UK and Canada, and The Webster Dictionary for USA.
    Last edited by robb_k; 08-20-2021 at 06:39 PM.

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    Interesting Robb, thanks for that.

    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    Flemish[[basically the southern Dutch dialects) is basically a dialectical difference from Standard Dutch [[Hollands)[[derived from The Amsterdam Noord Hollands dialect).
    More than 35 years ago I took a course in Dutch while living in Germany. The instructor, an elderly Dutch man, made sure that everyone understood that Flemish was not a distinct language [as many people thought, at least back then] but was the name given to the dialects of Dutch spoken in Belgium. I remember he gave us each a pamphlet from de Nederlandse Taalunie, which was still fairly new at the time, showing us that it was Dutch, not Flemish, that was an official language of Belgium. I think he said that there were slight differences in the written language between, say, newspapers in the Netherlands and Belgium, but that these differences would disappear as both countries had set up this organisation to standardise the language.

    Quote Originally Posted by calvin View Post
    I’m pretty sure that their standards are taught in the schools and used by, for example, news organisations...
    Just reading a bit about it online, though, I see that following some controversial spelling reforms about 15 years ago, the Dutch mainstream media released their own “white book” of spellings which are in some cases different than the “green book” spellings of the Taalunie that are taught in schools. So even in a case where I thought there was consensus there is still some disagreement.

    Imagine trying to get the English-speaking countries to agree on standard spellings and then reforming those spellings to make them more consistent [eg changing the spelling of words that end in -ough so that this same grouping of letters does not represent different sounds in different words]. There would be many who would refuse to accept it.

    I could only speak some rudimentary Dutch back then [and none now besides a few common phrases], knowing German and English helped with reading. I visited a friend in Utrecht shortly before a planned papal visit to the city - the pope's visit was very controversial and the main topic of the news [when the pope did come, there was a riot]. I was walking with my friend and she was showing me around the city when I saw, on a church, some graffiti that I understood and read out loud: “Geef de paus een strippenkaart.” [Probably no longer around, that was a strip of bus/tram tickets.] My friend hadn’t seen it and gave me a “wtf?” look - I then pointed to the graffiti, she couldn’t stop laughing for several minutes.

    Funny the things we remember, but those were good times...
    Last edited by calvin; 08-21-2021 at 02:52 PM.

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