Talk:something

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Request for cleanup: Definitions Galore[edit]

I have a few issues with this page.

  1. Is 'something' really a pronoun, rather than just a simple noun?
    I think it is. I'd recommend that you take a look at a scholarly English grammar, like Cambridge Grammar of the English Language if you can, or take the matter to WT:TR. DCDuring TALK 17:06, 1 March 2008 (UTC)
  2. There are two noun entries, one which has two definitions, the other having one definition (which overlaps one of the previous definitions) and some quotes.
    That's clearly wrong. One of the nound senses is also actually for a suffix: -something; the other seems identical to one of the pronoun senses. DCDuring TALK 17:06, 1 March 2008 (UTC)
  3. The adverb definition and example look remarkably similar to the third pronoun definition
    The difference is mostly in how they are used but I'll try to make sure that we have distinct-seeming senses. DCDuring TALK 17:06, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

Is there something I missed?

I'm sure there is and there'll be things that I've missed. Thanks for noticing. Sorry that we missed your comments until now. DCDuring TALK 17:06, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

AggyLlama 02:38, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

I reccommend that we just pull out #4 and combine #3 and #5, and replace 'someone or something' with 'a person, object, or idea' and describe it as an example of a euphamism.

Actually, although DCDuring opines that something is a pronoun and points to the CGEL, the CGEL doesn't support that view. It has every/some/any/no body/one/thing/where, as compound determinatives.--Brett 01:49, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
The pronoun categorization is followed by most dictionaries, including LDOCE 1987, which follows the Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language ("Quirk et al"). Cambridge Grammar of the English Language ("CGEL") has a rather different set of categories than Wiktionary and a more complete analysis of the grammar of determiners/determinatives than anything else I have seem. It is just beyond the conceptual framework that users have. I suggest that we use usage notes and additional grammatical categories and/or contexts to take advantage of the CGEL's analysis without forcing users (and contributors) to take up linguistics to use the dictionary. DCDuring TALK 14:51, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

RfC discussion[edit]

Too many definitions.

Please see discussion page in order not to duplicate the discussion.

Remaining issues relate to appropriate treatment/presentation of all items in Category:English compound determinatives. DCDuring TALK 15:54, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

Something as Verb[edit]

I think not. What are the inflections? No actual example is given though one is suggested.

I give the author credit because I think I get the intent. I.e. I know I have said literally, "I would like to something...", when for the moment I can't think of the correct word to use. In that situation it serves as a lexical pronoun. I just made that up. It is only a placekeeper until the sentence can be constructed correctly. I suspect there is an obscure linguistic despcription of what is going on here. I'll keep my eyes open.

I would never use that form in written English, and certainly would try to avoid it in speaking. I would figure out the right word to use and use it

For now, I'd say replace the heading Verb with a header that captures this usage ambiguity, or eliminate the section and definition altogether.

First I must take credit for starting this section. Makearney 21:47, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Now I see that there are quotations illustrating "something" used as a verb. It appears from the history that those quotations were there when I wrote the initial notes here. Consequently, I can hardly believe I wrote, "I'll keep my eye open" Sigh...

With those examples, I can hazard some inflections, and will Makearney 21:47, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

"He depresses me something fierce"[edit]

What sense of something is this? Equinox 17:34, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

I suppose it is an extension of the degree adverb we have. I have added an additional "colloquial" sense with citations. It may be that this should be reevaluated. I'm not entirely satisfied with it, though it is exactly what MWDEU has (even to explicitly mentioning only "awful", "fierce", and "terrible" as collocates). Now that we have accepted "Determiner" as a valid PoS header, some or all of the pronoun senses should be moved to a Determiner header. I don't know what that implies for the purported "adverb" senses. DCDuring TALK 23:10, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

RFV discussion[edit]

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Rfv-sense: something#Noun, an important person, a somebody. Usex shown is not consistent: He looks a something behind that big desk. Making the definition consistent with the usex would make the RfVed sense "important person, somebody". DCDuring TALK 14:58, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

I don't understand your objection. Are you saying that the indefinite article must be removed? If so, we'd have to make that change for every common noun on Wiktionary. --EncycloPetey 15:01, 8 June 2010 (UTC)
In this case the meaning differs IMO according to whether it is used with the indefinite article. Is the definition supposed to be for "He's really something" or "He's a real something" or the sense in the usage example, with which I am not familiar? Is this usage even possible in the plural? It is not as if this is "just like" a normal noun.
CGEL doesn't even accept the analysis of the "pronoun" senses as true pronouns, calling it a "compound determinative". The differences in categorization stem from the fact that some of the usage characteristics derive from each the elements from which it is formed, the determiner "some" and the noun "thing". And unlike a true pronoun, it (and similar terms) is not used anaphorically or deictically. DCDuring TALK 16:22, 8 June 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps a badly written erroneous definition for "something suprising or incredible" - that concert was really something. IMO "he looks a something" is a euphemisitic version of "he looks a <generic vulgarity>". It seems to contradict our sense, not reinforce it. Mglovesfun (talk) 17:09, 8 June 2010 (UTC)
google books:"he's a something" doesn't show much consistency of sense, but at least one use really does seem to be in this sense:
RuakhTALK 18:21, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

RFV failed, sense removed. —RuakhTALK 22:21, 4 March 2011 (UTC)