Words you think English should have or bring back.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby USPmastsa » Sat Dec 18, 2010 6:06 am UTC

there should be a word describing that chill you get when you're just sitting there and you twitch. Maybe like a maybe like it could be called a "twaquil". i.e., "Man, I just had a twaquil!" Or "You looked like you were twaquiling!" twaquil :arrow: FTW.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby TaintedDeity » Sat Dec 18, 2010 1:10 pm UTC

I think that's called a shiver.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:10 pm UTC

I wouldn't really call a shiver a twitch.

I would call a twitch a twitch.

What's wrong with the word "twitch?"

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Cissy » Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:19 am UTC

Its use is pretty limited, but I present to you a term for the little strands of hair that pop out of a ponytail/bun (particularly when stuck to the face with sweat): splickles.

Also, I'm going to start using overmorrow and ereyesterday in my everyday conversation.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby zyxw59 » Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:09 am UTC

I think that there should be a distinction between the different forms of possessive:
My teacher vs. my hand vs. my friend vs. my car vs. the car's wheel etc.

On the topic of 'yonder', there is also 'yon', like this or that: Yon tree (A tree that is out of sight)
I also just realized that 'beyond' has this same root in it.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Tue Dec 21, 2010 9:40 am UTC

zyxw59 wrote:I think that there should be a distinction between the different forms of possessive:
My teacher vs. my hand vs. my friend vs. my car vs. the car's wheel etc.

I've always wondered why the possessive case is used for the partitive.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Tue Dec 21, 2010 9:53 am UTC

Eebster the Great wrote:
zyxw59 wrote:I think that there should be a distinction between the different forms of possessive:
My teacher vs. my hand vs. my friend vs. my car vs. the car's wheel etc.

I've always wondered why the possessive case is used for the partitive.


I don't understand the difference between any of those five.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Tue Dec 21, 2010 9:24 pm UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:
Eebster the Great wrote:
zyxw59 wrote:I think that there should be a distinction between the different forms of possessive:
My teacher vs. my hand vs. my friend vs. my car vs. the car's wheel etc.

I've always wondered why the possessive case is used for the partitive.


I don't understand the difference between any of those five.

The five zyxw59 listed have three subtly different meanings. "My teacher" is a teacher to me, but isn't a part of me and doesn't belong to me. My hand is actually a part of me, but isn't a hand "to me" (though it does also "belong to me" unless I am a slave, I guess). "My car" is literally my possession, but it isn't a part of me or a car to me. "My friend" is similar to "my teacher" and "the car's wheel" is similar to "my hand."

The partitive is completely different but is nevertheless represented by the genetive or possessive in many languages (and is represented by the preposition of in English, along with the possessive form of pronouns, but never with the enclitic 's). Some example are "three of my socks," or "a bucket of water." It generally represents "partialness" or "composition."

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby markfiend » Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:20 pm UTC

Late to the party, but can I propose, as the opposite of dense, "loose"?

Also there was someone up-thread proposing malthoughteous -- isn't that just "malevolent"?
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby sugarhyped » Fri Dec 24, 2010 3:53 am UTC

Eebster the Great wrote:
Iulus Cofield wrote:
Eebster the Great wrote:
zyxw59 wrote:I think that there should be a distinction between the different forms of possessive:
My teacher vs. my hand vs. my friend vs. my car vs. the car's wheel etc.

I've always wondered why the possessive case is used for the partitive.


I don't understand the difference between any of those five.

The five zyxw59 listed have three subtly different meanings. "My teacher" is a teacher to me, but isn't a part of me and doesn't belong to me. My hand is actually a part of me, but isn't a hand "to me" (though it does also "belong to me" unless I am a slave, I guess). "My car" is literally my possession, but it isn't a part of me or a car to me. "My friend" is similar to "my teacher" and "the car's wheel" is similar to "my hand."

The partitive is completely different but is nevertheless represented by the genetive or possessive in many languages (and is represented by the preposition of in English, along with the possessive form of pronouns, but never with the enclitic 's). Some example are "three of my socks," or "a bucket of water." It generally represents "partialness" or "composition."


Also my friend is a reciprocative thing. I am my friends friend but not my teachers teacher.
I am not sure about the car's wheel...
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Derek » Fri Dec 24, 2010 4:52 am UTC

I think that has more to do with the nature of the relationship than the grammar. But I don't know, maybe some languages distinguish this in grammar? I wouldn't be surprised anymore.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:38 am UTC

Since you suggested several languages distinguish these grammatically, I naturally accept that there is a grammatical difference. Although I still don't really see it, like Derek said, it seems more like a distinction of the extragrammatical features of the relationship. If I was talking about "his snorfglax", I don't personally understand how I could make the distinction between those genitives until I learned what a snorfglax was. But of course, if there are grammatical forms in other languages that make those distinctions, then I could obviously make the distinction.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Derek » Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:24 am UTC

I think this is getting into Sapir-Whorf hypothesis territory. Because English does not distinguish these different uses of possession, we have trouble understanding how they are distinct concepts.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby gmalivuk » Mon Dec 27, 2010 3:50 am UTC

Except, once they've been explained, it's pretty easy to understand how they're different. S-W claims that we *can't* understand such things, when in reality we're simply less likely to think about them off the bat, because they're not things we're forced to think about every time we speak.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Monika » Wed Jan 05, 2011 6:02 pm UTC

I think there should be the word "unfluence" and it should mean "bad influence".
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Wed Jan 05, 2011 9:13 pm UTC

Inoften.

As in, I go running inoften. I tried to pass this off as a legitimate word (it is !) in a morphology class and everyone was like "lolwut?"

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby firechicago » Wed Jan 05, 2011 9:34 pm UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:Inoften.

As in, I go running inoften. I tried to pass this off as a legitimate word (it is !) in a morphology class and everyone was like "lolwut?"


Does "inoften" express any concepts that are missed by "infrequently" "occasionally" or "rarely"?

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Thu Jan 06, 2011 12:23 am UTC

Yes, it's more often than rarely, less often than occasionally, and slightly less often than infrequently.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby firechicago » Thu Jan 06, 2011 12:49 am UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:Yes, it's more often than rarely, less often than occasionally, and slightly less often than infrequently.


So roughly equivalent to "once in a while" then? :lol:

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Thu Jan 06, 2011 1:05 am UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:Yes, it's more often than rarely, less often than occasionally, and slightly less often than infrequently.

See, when I say "infrequently," I usually mean more often than "occasionally," though.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:36 am UTC

I suspect any modifier intensity continuum tends to be highly regional if not highly personal.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Thu Jan 06, 2011 6:59 am UTC

My mom often strings together the adjectives "big" and "huge" to describe "a big huge rock," etc. I do not insert the comma because that's not how she says it. I don't know where "big huge" falls on the spectrum of hugeness.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Thu Jan 06, 2011 7:46 am UTC

I suspect it is bigger than big and bigger than huge but probably not as big as ginormous.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Kewangji » Thu Jan 06, 2011 5:16 pm UTC

So, here's a list. Most of these words and phrases don't have words, just definitions. If anyone wants to give names to them, be my guest!

* [noun] A person who gives into peer pressure at the slightest verbal push. Example: Oh, that Veronica is such a *, I dared her to walk around in Tokyo, dressed as a panda and she did it.

* [adjective] the kind of color matching an utterly fashion-blind, or regular blind, person would make. Example: Ew, that * shirt-hat-combination makes me want to puke the rainbow.

"Puking the rainbow" [verbish phrase, phrasal verb, whatevs] when regular puking just doesn't do it.

* [uncountable noun] the evils that are carried out by entities far greater than any single person. It takes dedication, hard work and coherency to commit these kinds of evils. Example: McDonalds' evils have reached new levels! They have now been replaced by *. Example 2: The kyriarchy's * always make me sad to witness traces of in the minds of the young'uns I devour, said Frivult the Child-Eater, I wish there was some way I could help.
"An instance of *", is the 'singular' version of this word, if you want to describe a specific one of these great evils or something.

Octodextrous [adjective] describing a mutant with eight hands, all of which they can use as well as any other hand. Nounified: Octodextrist. Example: I went out with Kyle – he's octodextrous – and let me tell you, it was like fucking Spiderman.

* [noun] a person who imitates a superhero to the point that they actually believe they are them. Example: I mean, because Kyle's a *, he always whined about Mary Jane in bed. It was terrible. The hands were cool, though.

Plusoctodextrous [adjective] describing a mutant who has more than eight hands, but can only use eight of them well. Example: Kyle's brother occasionally falls down stairs, mum says it's because of his plusoctodextrosity.

* [verb] to test a hypothesis despite knowing that it's worthless. Example: After March burned down my house, I collected all the tissue I found in the building to see whether I could find genetic evidence that I died in there. Suffice to say, I *ed the shit out of that work day. I don't even know what I'm doing here anymore, to be honest.

Tlapk [verb] to masturbate by slapping yourself. Onomatopoetic, derived from slap and fap and thwack. Example: When I saw that video of Grey dancing wearing just a loincloth and a shoulder-mounted flamethrower, I tlapked so hard I pretended I'd got assaulted the next day at work. With my house burnt down and me getting assaulted and all, everybody gave me pity-chocolates.

* [noun] a substance stickier than marmalade, but runnier than glue. Could be any substance. Example: My snot is a * right now, not sure how I feel about that.

* [verb] reading something to impress others or so – not doing it for one's own, or reading's own sake. Example: I'm reading this book. Do you think Cassandra likes me now? Nah, I think she knows you're just *ing.

* [noun] a revenge, long overdue. Example: It wasn't a very satisfying battle, but when Lord Ylkor stabbed me in the chest for the last time, I felt sympathies because of the look on his face. It was so clearly * for him, and then I died.

* [noun] the act of having sympathies for one's enemies. Example: I stabbed him and I felt some *, but then the whole situation was so ^* [adjectivized] for me, I forgot all about him. I, Lord Ylkor, had finally killed the mailman! No longer should he terrorize me with those letters and those bills.

* [noun] the realization that one has been operating under false assumptions one's whole life. Example: Lord Ylkor cried in * as the new mailman bicycled away after leaving the bills on Ylkor's doorstep. Example 2: The * of becoming an atheist was pretty overwhelming.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby firechicago » Thu Jan 06, 2011 5:23 pm UTC

Kewangji wrote:* [noun] A person who gives into peer pressure at the slightest verbal push. Example: Oh, that Veronica is such a *, I dared her to walk around in Tokyo, dressed as a panda and she did it.


I think Etta James has a suggestion for that one

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Kewangji » Thu Jan 06, 2011 6:03 pm UTC

Oh! I express myself terribly. I'll try again: Someone who perceives any and all suggestions as peer pressure, and gives into it. Hm. Sounds like there could be a word for this, but none that I can think of at the top of my head.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Jan 06, 2011 6:12 pm UTC

"Pushover" doesn't work?
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Kewangji » Thu Jan 06, 2011 6:36 pm UTC

In my mind, it doesn't sound right for what I'm trying to say. But… I suppose it is near enough to not really warrant a word. Yeah, scratch that word off the list.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Thu Jan 06, 2011 7:32 pm UTC

Kewangji wrote:* [adjective] the kind of color matching an utterly fashion-blind, or regular blind, person would make. Example: Ew, that * shirt-hat-combination makes me want to puke the rainbow.


You know, not every adjective needs to be ultra-specific. I would just call it a "disastrous combination" or something (actually I wouldn't care at all, but if I really needed a word . . . ).

"Puking the rainbow" [verbish phrase, phrasal verb, whatevs] when regular puking just doesn't do it.


It's a participial phrase, and I have actually heard this one before.

* [uncountable noun] the evils that are carried out by entities far greater than any single person. It takes dedication, hard work and coherency to commit these kinds of evils. Example: McDonalds' evils have reached new levels! They have now been replaced by *. Example 2: The kyriarchy's * always make me sad to witness traces of in the minds of the young'uns I devour, said Frivult the Child-Eater, I wish there was some way I could help.
"An instance of *", is the 'singular' version of this word, if you want to describe a specific one of these great evils or something.


I have always called this "orchestrated evil."

Tlapk [verb] to masturbate by slapping yourself. Onomatopoetic, derived from slap and fap and thwack. Example: When I saw that video of Grey dancing wearing just a loincloth and a shoulder-mounted flamethrower, I tlapked so hard I pretended I'd got assaulted the next day at work. With my house burnt down and me getting assaulted and all, everybody gave me pity-chocolates.


Slapsturbation sounds so much better.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby animeHrmIne » Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:48 pm UTC

Kewangji wrote:* [adjective] the kind of color matching an utterly fashion-blind, or regular blind, person would make. Example: Ew, that * shirt-hat-combination makes me want to puke the rainbow.


I think that's "clashing".

Dictionary.com agrees: 4. (of juxtaposed colors) to be offensive to the eye.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby SammyIAm » Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:32 am UTC

Apologies if this was mentioned before (I can't find a good way to search a specific thread, any help on that?):

A verb to describe the opposite of "want". Like if someone offers to loan me a book that I really don't care strongly about reading, I could say I "don't want it", but I would probably still take it if they offered. So it's not that I diswant(?) the book, I just don't have a positive amount of want for it.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:38 am UTC

SammyIAm wrote:(I can't find a good way to search a specific thread, any help on that?)
At the top of the page, there's a "search this topic" box.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Antimony-120 » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:46 am UTC

SammyIAm wrote:Apologies if this was mentioned before (I can't find a good way to search a specific thread, any help on that?):

A verb to describe the opposite of "want". Like if someone offers to loan me a book that I really don't care strongly about reading, I could say I "don't want it", but I would probably still take it if they offered. So it's not that I diswant(?) the book, I just don't have a positive amount of want for it.


Are you, per chance, indifferent?

A number of proposed words are not in fact new concepts but merely requiring a rewording of the sentence, or have a word even if it's not very common. Or are adjectives that people think are necessary for some reason. I can indicate various amounts of e.g., temperature with the single word "cold". I can say it's "cold" while waggling my hands a little to indicate that it's a bit nippy, I can say it's cold to mean it's fairly cold, I can say it's cold with some intensity to indicate it's very cold, or I can say it's *deep breath* cold to mean that spit goes clink.

It's not quite like chinese, where tone can change entire meanings, but for most adjectives cold can do a lot of the grunt work. And even in text we have modifiers for our adjectives that work, such as "a little" "very" "friggen" "ohmydearfuck".

In short, truly new words are rare, context gets a lot of info across. Still, some of the words brought up were interesting.
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Velifer » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:01 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:At the top of the page, there's a "search this topic" box.

/facepalm.
Almost a thousand posts in, and this is the first time I noticed that. Surely there's a word for a sudden, startling realization of something really stupidly obvious. "Epiphany" is too weighty, as are most of the synonyms listed. "Dumbrate" with a false etymology of "dumb" as a mind-clouded cognate of adumbrate?
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby SammyIAm » Fri Jan 07, 2011 10:16 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:At the top of the page, there's a "search this topic" box.


Ohhh, I was using subsilver, which apparently doesn't have that.

Antimony-120 wrote:Are you, per chance, indifferent?


Yes, indeed I think that's describes the example I gave, but upon reflection I think I chose a poor example. The word that I feel is missing isn't the lack of want, but rather the opposite of it. Saying "I don't want" something, in my opinion, doesn't do enough to make it clear if I'm just indifferent or if I'm actively against the idea (though it seems like the latter is probably used most commonly).

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby cntrational » Fri Jan 14, 2011 3:22 am UTC

I wonder how many concepts in this thread are perfectly expressible in English, except that you'd have to use multiple words. Quite a lot, I'd say. <_<

Reminds me of that old joke that English doesn't have a word for free speech.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Fri Jan 14, 2011 8:08 am UTC

Generally, any concept can be translated from one language into any other, although some languages will require considerably more words to get there.
Then again, there are some interesting cultural effects on language. For example, Japanese has a way to say a phrase that means "Sorry I'm late" that being ごめん、晩くなった [gomeɴ.osoku.natta] but we could potentially translate that as "Sorry, I became slow." The relevant word 晩い [osoi] functionally means either slow or late, but the argument could be made that the more literal meaning is "slow". So, do we say that the Japanese have no word for late? I think persuasive arguments could be made for either side.

This is kind of a tangent though, so I'll say I think English should have a modal verb indicating non-deliberate causation. We can use "make" in a sense close to this, but it expressing the connection too strongly for example "That class made me want to become a linguist". The class wasn't (necessarily) actively attempting to make me want to be a linguist, but it was the cause for my desire. "Cause" can be used in a similar sense "That class caused me to want to become a linguist" and there are various phrasal constructions we can use to express this idea such as "Because of that class, I want to be a linguist", but none of these are quite as snappy and quick as a real modal, which would be neat if not all that necessary.

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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Eebster the Great » Fri Jan 14, 2011 1:30 pm UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:This is kind of a tangent though, so I'll say I think English should have a modal verb indicating non-deliberate causation. We can use "make" in a sense close to this, but it expressing the connection too strongly for example "That class made me want to become a linguist". The class wasn't (necessarily) actively attempting to make me want to be a linguist, but it was the cause for my desire. "Cause" can be used in a similar sense "That class caused me to want to become a linguist" and there are various phrasal constructions we can use to express this idea such as "Because of that class, I want to be a linguist", but none of these are quite as snappy and quick as a real modal, which would be neat if not all that necessary.

The class inspired you to become a linguist?

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Iulus Cofield
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby Iulus Cofield » Fri Jan 14, 2011 3:58 pm UTC

That's not really grammatically or semantically causative. It's also not a true modal verb. The target sentence would be something like "The class [caus. past modal] want me to be a linguist."

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gmalivuk
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Re: Words you think English should have or bring back.

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Jan 14, 2011 4:52 pm UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:It's also not a true modal verb.
Neither is "make".
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