Talk:demesne

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Old English via Old French[edit]

Really? It's not starred which suggests that this is attested in Old English. We do have used to have Category:ang:Old French derivations so it's by no means impossible as some Old French words came across the channel before the Norman invasion. Mglovesfun (talk) 17:07, 28 February 2011 (UTC)

Sorry, I guess I misinterpreted what a previous editor had written. The entry said "Old English demeine, Old French demeine, French domaine, from Latin dominium", which I assumed meant "from OE demeine, which is from OFr demeine (from which also comes French domaine), which is from Latin dominium". I guess that must be wrong. What is the correct succession, then? If you can, please do fix it!​—msh210 (talk) 17:19, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm not disputing what you've done (which I agree with) but the Old English coming from Old French (which was already there) which isn't impossible, just rare. AFAICT if the Old English is attested it's very likely to be true. Mglovesfun (talk) 17:32, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
The etymology was added by someone (Connel, actually) who copied it straight from 1913. Their wording, according to the ARTFL edition, is "OE. demeine, demain, rule, demesne, OF. demeine, demaine, demeigne, domaine, power, F. domaine domain, fr. L. dominium property, right of ownership, fr. dominus master, proprietor, owner. See Dame, and cf. DEmain, Domain, Danger, Dungeon.". Etymonline says it's from Anglo-French (that's what we at enwikt call Anglo-Norman, right?) demesne, demeine, from OFr., which is more like what you think is more natural. OED online says it's from Anglo-Norman, too. Perhaps Widsith can weigh in here on whether it ever hit Old English.​—msh210 (talk) 17:45, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
It didn't. Webster 1913 used ‘Old English’ to refer to what we call Middle English (what we call Old English, it calls ‘Anglo-Saxon’). This is very irritating of course, and there are a few entries like this where it's still never been corrected. I'll change the etymology section now. Ƿidsiþ 18:46, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Thanks.​—msh210 (talk) 18:54, 28 February 2011 (UTC)

Can someone edit this definition so it makes sense? Surely if it is a word of the day then it should be clearer