Wiktionary:Requests for deletion: difference between revisions

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:: I specifically didn't RFD this on its creation because I had already been stung over {{term|hang up the phone}}. Surely a similar argument could be used here that, depending on the model, you might not be slamming down the ''entire'' phone but only the handset. (I think this is fucking retarded, but I didn't want to get into it at the time, so didn't RFV.) [[User:Equinox|Equinox]] [[User_talk:Equinox|◑]] 20:16, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
:: I specifically didn't RFD this on its creation because I had already been stung over {{term|hang up the phone}}. Surely a similar argument could be used here that, depending on the model, you might not be slamming down the ''entire'' phone but only the handset. (I think this is fucking retarded, but I didn't want to get into it at the time, so didn't RFV.) [[User:Equinox|Equinox]] [[User_talk:Equinox|◑]] 20:16, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
:::Consider this quote from google books: "Then tell participants to say goodbye, hang up, and turn off their cell phones." "Hang up" now means to "terminate a telephone call." Not long ago it meant to "terminate a phone call by placing a handset or receiver in its cradle". Earlier still it meant to "hang the earpiece on the cradle". If a user goes to a complete entry at "hang up", what could possibly be left uncertain? What vintage telephone technology is being referred to perhaps? Perhaps "hang up the phone" should redirect to "hang up" for the benefit of users who type in the full four words in the searchbox.
:::Consider this quote from Google Books: "Then tell participants to say goodbye, hang up, and turn off their cell phones." "Hang up" now means to "terminate a telephone call." Not long ago it meant to "terminate a phone call by placing a handset or receiver in its cradle". Earlier still it meant to "hang the earpiece on the cradle". If a user goes to a complete entry at "hang up", what could possibly be left uncertain? What vintage telephone technology is being referred to perhaps? Perhaps "hang up the phone" should redirect to "hang up" for the benefit of users who type in the full four words in the searchbox.
:::With "slam down the phone", it seems wildly implausibly that there is any importance to a distinction between slamming down a handset (or mouthpiece or receiver or cellphone) and slamming down a base unit. "Slam" is likely the salient term. [[User: DCDuring |DCDuring]] <small >[[User talk: DCDuring|TALK]]</small > 00:42, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
:::With "slam down the phone", it seems wildly implausibly that there is any importance to a distinction between slamming down a handset (or mouthpiece or receiver or cellphone) and slamming down a base unit. "Slam" is likely the salient term. [[User: DCDuring |DCDuring]] <small >[[User talk: DCDuring|TALK]]</small > 00:42, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
:::: Well ''you'' think that, and ''I'' think that, but for example Stephen G (and no disrespect to him) wants to "look up complete terms, not elements of terms". I'm horribly opinionated, but I still realise that this is a collaborative project and would rather make a decision based on rules than on preferences. [[User:Equinox|Equinox]] [[User_talk:Equinox|◑]] 02:14, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
:::: Well ''you'' think that, and ''I'' think that, but for example Stephen G (and no disrespect to him) wants to "look up complete terms, not elements of terms". I'm horribly opinionated, but I still realise that this is a collaborative project and would rather make a decision based on rules than on preferences. [[User:Equinox|Equinox]] [[User_talk:Equinox|◑]] 02:14, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
:First one '''deleted'''. For DCD, couldn't hang up cover this? "Hang up the phone" doesn't actually appear in your citation, just "hang up". [[User:Mglovesfun|Mglovesfun]] ([[User talk:Mglovesfun|talk]]) 04:18, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
== [[free variable]] ==
== [[free variable]] ==

Revision as of 04:18, 28 July 2009

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May 2008

کله کیر

It has been at requests for verification before but does not appear to be verified. The English definition has been removed by (talk) but I reverted and decided to nominate it for deletion, unless it can be verified it should be deleted. 01:30, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

The fundamental meaning is correct, but the question is the semantic level. Literally it says "prick head", but I don’t know if it is used only in a vulgar sense or also in medical jargon. —Stephen 06:28, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

wait for

(From RFV)

I can see nothing but a sum of parts, wait and for Goldenrowley 03:53, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

We don't have that sense of for, and I'm not sure how it would be written. Waiting for someone does not necessarily mean to wait on that person's behalf; you might even be waiting for someone on someone else's behalf ("my boss asked me to wait for his daughter.") -- Visviva 06:10, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

I am not sure I understand the comment, two of the definitions of "for" apply after "wait":

  1. for =Supporting (opposite of against).
    I wait for you to love me
  2. for = Because of.
    I wait for love

Goldenrowley 19:09, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

Abstain. I believe that the relevant sense of for is one that we don't yet have — something like this:

  1. Used to construe various verbs.
    Don't wait for an answer.
    What did he ask you for?
    He was convicted for murder. (We currently have this as an example for the “Because of.” sense, but that can't be right, as “He was wrongly convicted for a murder that never happened” is perfectly standard.)
    I'm looking for my friend.

— but that's no reason to keep wait for. On the other hand, in my experience we're pretty arbitrary about which verbs we take as phrasal and define on their own, and which ones we define at the main verb entry; if we expect our readers to be able to predict this, we might as well give up now on ever having readers. —RuakhTALK 19:58, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

An experienced Wiktionary user will try multiple approaches, knowing by experience that we are often inconsistent. A new user is more likely to type in "wait for" (or "wait") than "for", IMO. I am not yet certain that we have fully and accurately defined the senses of "wait for". DCDuring TALK 20:24, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

[edit conflict]

IMO those are not the right senses of "for".
  1. In the first example the emotional content has introduced the idea of support, but that is not common and not relevant to the meaning at hand. For example, in the sentence "I am waiting for the other shoe to drop." the "support" notion does not apply in any way.
  2. In ordinary language "cause" usually doesn't refer to a goal or an event in the future, but rather something from the past. "I am waiting for my hanging for my love." shows two sense of "for", the first is the sense that had been missing and the second is the cause sense.
"Wait for" is roughly synonymous with "await". MW3 shows 10 major senses and 18 subsenses of "for". There are obvious parallels among the senses, derived from a basic spatial metaphor applied in various ways, but they are distinguishable. DCDuring TALK 20:06, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree delete. This is just sum of parts, with for leading off a prepositional phrase in the examples above. --EncycloPetey 20:17, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
  • I think keep, myself. How would you know how to translate it? wait for is a single transitive verb in many (most?) languages. Widsith 20:52, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
I am afraid if we go down the route to say we cannot define "for", then we will have to make entries for things like "hold for", "stop for", etc. I think the word "for" is a word that links the word "wait" with the reason for waiting.. just as it links many other words to their reasons. Goldenrowley 22:29, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
I disagree. To me, wait for sounds obviously more idiomatic than "stop for". The point is that, despite having a transitive verb await, the natural way to express the idea in English is to use an intransitive verb (wait) with a preposition. This is quite unlike the situation in other languages. It is not a matter of "not being able" to define for, but rather that it is more appropriate and helpful to consider this to be a compound verb. Widsith 08:53, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
For me that's not the issue. We ought to have both the appropriate senses for "for" and whatever phrasal verbs or idiomatic expressions use "for". In gray-area cases I favor being nice to naive users by including more likely-to-be-searched terms both as headwords and elsewhere, in alternative forms, usage examples, and usage notes. DCDuring TALK 23:36, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
Weak delete, and wait on too. If we delete, we need a usage note s.v. wait.—msh210 17:46, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Delete, and improve the definition of for. My rule of thumb on deciding whether something is a phrasal verb or just a verb followed by a preposition is whether it can be felicitously passivized. In this way, wait for is very different from, say wait on, which is definitely a phrasal verb. "Yesterday I was waited on by a very good-looking waiter" is perfectly grammatical, but ???"Yesterday I was waited for by a very good-looking customer" sounds quite odd. (It's still better than *"The store was gone to", though, so maybe it's slightly more phrasal than go to, which is definitely SOP.) Angr 17:57, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • wait for cannot be translated by looking up wait and for, because the two words are translated by a single word in most other languages. Using two words is idiomatic English, not to mentiona a common set phrase. Why not have it? Widsith 20:32, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • I don't know if I agree with your premise. The correct way to translate wait for is to look up wait, find its translation, and see what preposition the translation is construed with. For example, the Hebrew translation of wait is חיכה (khiká), so you'd look that up, and find that in the relevant sense, it's construed with ל־ (l'-, to, for). Problem solved. Unless you're saying that most languages use different words for wait for as for bare wait; but I don't think you are, and if you were, then it seems like we'd need the translation of wait for at wait in order to prevent confusion. —RuakhTALK 22:49, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Er...I'm not sure, until that Hebrew page is created, how clear that will be. From what you are saying, though, I think that case is less confusing than translations which do not take any preposition at all. The French word attendre for instance — to me the defs wait (intransitive) and wait for (transitive) would ideally be on separate lines and link to separate English entries. The English word wait can be used with different prepositions – for, until, about, around, on, up — all of which effectively create very different "indirect" verbs, some transitive and others in-. Now while this can be dealt with through good preposition information at wait (the current entry is nowhere near, btw), I don't see why it's not more helpful to make common collocations such as wait for pages in their own right. As well, if not instead. Widsith 17:16, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
  • While I appreciate Widsith's valient efforts to find a perfect translation of words from other languages into English, the primary purpose of English Wikipedia is to define English words and phrases, not to fit what other languages have (that we do not) or to force the translations into English. For example we load English idioms here, we do not load English translations of French idioms (just because they can be translated). That having been said, "wait" implies we are waiting "for" something, in most cases. I never hear anyone "wait from" anything. Goldenrowley 03:57, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
    I don't see how anything I've suggested interferes with this "primary purpose" you are talking about. But whatever, I'm done. Widsith 06:29, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
Delete with explanation at wait, and possibly splitting translations (if we still do that). DAVilla 06:44, 10 July 2008 (UTC)
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I was about to delete this, but is there anything salvageable (movable) among the translations?—msh210 19:28, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

A sign that something is merely SoP is if it translates literally and nicely into numerous other languages. I don’t know of another language that has this particular construction. English "wait for him" becomes in German "warten Sie auf ihn" (not "warten Sie für ihn"). In Spanish, I’d say "espéralo" (not "espera para él"). In Russian, "ожидайте его" (not "ждите для него"). It’s idiomatic. Keep. —Stephen 22:32, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
(Further to the above) Also, this phrase can be tricky, because it has different meanings (wait for him vs. wait for him to do something...German "warte auf ihn" vs. "warte, dass er etwas tut"), and the sense "wait for him" has at least two subsenses (await his imminent arrival vs. wait part of a lifetime until he returns from duty or is released from captivity, with an eye towards marriage). —Stephen 23:17, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
On the flip side, one can also say "he waited three hours for her", or "he waited three hours for her to finish", so even if we keep [[wait for]], won't we have to duplicate all its information at [[wait]]? —RuakhTALK 23:30, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
In the interest of keep the entry for wait of reasonable size, wouldn't it be desirable to have the wait for usage notes and examples separate from any such for wait? Something terse, but not hidden under show/hide, at wait that pointed to wait for would provide users the needed trail to follow. I know that size of entry is not a linguistic consideration, but it is a meaningful practical one for users if we want to give them OED-type depth of information. We haven't solved the problem of how to do that with single large entries. DCDuring TALK 23:53, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
As a staunch supporter of phrasal verbs, I have stayed away from this discussion because I am not convinced it is really phrasal. But following through the debate it is clear that 1. it is borderline phrasal for a number of reasons (although "he waited three hours for her" is a demonstration of non-phrasal status), and 2. trying to put all those usage notes everywhere would be anything but useful!!. So on the grounds of practical utility for the users, I think we should Keep this entry, with usage notes in the entry itself. -- ALGRIF talk 16:13, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Keep because:
    many other dictionaries include this separately under their entries for "wait";
    some phrasal verb lists have this; and
    our entry for wait is already too long to do this justice.
This vote is now almost even: 5 deletes: GoldenRowley, EP, MSH, Angr, and DAVilla; 1 abstain: Ruakh; 4 keeps: Widsith, Stephen, Algrif, DCDuring DCDuring TALK 19:03, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

Weak Keep as a borderline phrasal verb synonymous with await. The length of the entry [[wait]] shouldn't be an important issue when coming to a decision about keeping [[wait for]]. And a possible derived term from wait for is wait for it (not yet defined here, but Urbandictionary gives the definition "A sentence-enhancing phrase, used to illustrate the epicness of an object/situation/event. " (better than most UD definitions, but I'm sure we could do better)). Merriam-Webster's usage note at [1] says

American dialectologists have evidence showing wait on (sense 3) to be more a Southern than a Northern form in speech. Handbook writers universally denigrate wait on and prescribe wait for in writing. Our evidence from printed sources does not show a regional preference; it does show that the handbooks' advice is not based on current usage <settlement of the big problems still waited on Russia — Time> <the staggering bill that waited on them at the white commissary downtown — Maya Angelou>. One reason for the continuing use of wait on may lie in its being able to suggest protracted or irritating waits better than wait for <for two days I've been waiting on weather — Charles A. Lindbergh> <the boredom of black Africans sitting there, waiting on the whims of a colonial bureaucracy — Vincent Canby> <doesn't care to sit around waiting on a House that's virtually paralyzed — Glenn A. Briere>. Wait on is less common than wait for, but if it seems natural, there is no reason to avoid it.

--Jackofclubs 10:01, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

Keep. The use of "wait for" is idiomatic and therefore is not a sum of its parts. Translating the parts into another language will certainly give the wrong result, therefore it warrants having a separate translation for the idiom. --CodeCat 16:18, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

I agree with you but, by what reasoning or what criteria is it idiomatic? Without your presenting that or lending support to someone else's reasoned position your vote on irrelevant criteria should by rights be be disregarded. We have provisions for voting on changes in policy. Initiate a discussion at WT:BP. There are others who agree with you. Make a proposal. Then we vote. Then we act on the new policy. And then those who vote in flagrant contradiction to the new policy can be ignored. DCDuring TALK 17:02, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

June 2008


rfd-sense Prefix for Canadair aircraft models. We have government aircraft prefixes, but not DC, as in DC-3, for the fabled twin-prop. DCDuring TALK 20:47, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm clueless about the topic, so please bear with me. By "we" do you mean Wiktionary? Can you give some examples of "government aircraft prefixes" that we include? What are CL and DC instead? (Canadair used to be nationalized; would that make its prefix a government one, at least during that time period?) Why does this distinction bear on inclusion here? (I'm not saying that it doesn't, I'm just really clueless about this). —RuakhTALK 00:28, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
The Imperial Wiktionary we, yes. Both are arguably "private". If government enterprises are exempt from our rules on things like trademarks and such, do we have to keep track of shareholdings to know whether an item should be included? How much government ownership would get an entity over the hump? I really hope that government ownership will be a red canard.
DC stood for the Douglas Commercial, Douglas being Douglas Aircraft, the leading commercial aircraft company until Boeing came from their second position at the onset of the jet age. DC-3 through D-10 were their model numbers. The MD-80 is a descendant of the DC-9. US military prefixes are abundant. There are many, many naval ones, ranging from USS, to CVN, similarly for armored vehicles and helicopters. Surprisingly the Air Force hasn't gotten very many of their designations in. I don;t know about the government equipment designating prefixes. Our standards for abbreviations might allow them. The manufacturers' designations seem different to me. Mind you, I'd think we'd be better to have more trademarks, place names, etc. in Wiktionary, but rules is rules. DCDuring TALK 00:57, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
So are "CL", "DC", etc. assigned by some external authority, or is it just something the manufacturers do? If the former, I'm inclined to think of it as a meaningful and neutral unit that may be worth defining here; if the latter, I'm inclined to think of it as low-grade spam — not a big deal, but not something we'd want to encourage. —RuakhTALK 02:59, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
And, thanks for explaining so patiently. :-) —RuakhTALK 03:04, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
Manufacturers. The manufacturer's don't care enough to spam us. But there are plenty of fans for all kinds of boys' toys, especially "heavy metal". I have not been immune to the fascination of some of this. The two-letter airline codes (now augmented by additional codes), the three-letter airport codes, military equipment designations, .... Lists galore. The idea that we limit ourselves to product and brand names that convey more meaning than what they directly designate seems like a good idea, if we are going to exclude brands and company names. I'm not so clear whether we have drawn the line in the same place for abbreviations. It probably warrants some clarification of how our existing standards apply to determine if we need more. I see a lot of low-quality material in abbreviations. Not every government program and agency really merits inclusion of its abbreviation. I haven't seen terribly many RfV challenges to it. I don't find most of the abbreviations on Ullman's not-counted list to be worth fixing. I also don't think we should swamp the RfV/RfD with challenges without clarifying CFI for abbreviations. DCDuring TALK 04:19, 27 June 2008 (UTC)


rfc hasn't elicited good def in one year. DCDuring TALK 09:09, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

The only usage I know of means "bit of made-up language" (a severely reduced, ad hoc construction as opposed to a complete constructed language such as Esperanto or Ido). Made-up language tests are sometimes used to test language-learning ability. The U.S. Government used to use these tests to qualify applicants to the Defense Language Institute. See w:Artificial grammar learning. —Stephen 14:21, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
Looking at th WP stub article and the first 2 pages of the 600+ raw b.g.c. hits, it seems SoP to me, but similar phrases have passed RfD. DCDuring TALK 15:54, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
I've replaced the definition and removed rfc, but it still looks SoP to me. DCDuring TALK 16:18, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
I don't see this as SoP any more than artificial intelligence. Since it is used attributively in artificial grammar learning, it should satisfy CFI. I'll try to find a more thorough explanation, since the current definition seems somehow lacking, but I can't articulate quite why I think that. --EncycloPetey 16:37, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
Yes, the current definition simply defines grammar. artificial grammar means "small bit of made-up language, used for testing language-learning ability". —Stephen 17:05, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

Deleted. With this definition, not cited and not kept. There's potential later for entry, but this discussion is closed. --Jackofclubs 00:08, 19 June 2009 (UTC)

August 2008

short cut

rfd-sense: A very short rendition, or snippets, of a film or play, as used in a coming attraction or promotional video.

IOW, short (brief) + cut (result of cutting). DCDuring TALK 10:34, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

Delete.msh210 20:21, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
Not the primary sense of cut, so keep. Would be a stronger keep if the stress is on short.
Irrelevant argument under WT:CFI. DCDuring TALK 16:07, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Do we need to have a third etymology for one of the missing senses also: from "short haircut"? DCDuring TALK 16:07, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted.msh210 00:40, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

x-American entries and x-born entries (ex: Sicilian-American, American-born Chinese)

"SoP" entries. Sets a bad precedent for thousands of similar entries (ex. Korean American, Cuban American, Mexican American, and so on). --TBC 22:22, 28 August 2008 (UTC)

keep Submit for RfV just like anything else. There are usually important as preferred alternatives to usually non-SoP pejoratives. Usage notes alone on each subject would warrant their inclusion. I would suggest that we should have at least one attestable non-pejorative demonym (?) for every ethnic grouping for which we have a pejorative demonym. DCDuring TALK 22:41, 28 August 2008 (UTC)
Delete American-born Chinese and British-born Chinese; keep Sicilian-American and African-American. I'll see if I can dredge up the classic Nelson Mandela quote using "African-American" where an idiot American reporter "corrected" him about the term and Mandela explained that the black people of Africa were not actually African-American. African-American in particular is not sum of parts, since it is not used to refer to Americans of North African descent or to white Americans of South African descent. --EncycloPetey 00:42, 29 August 2008 (UTC)
I don't think that these ought to be treated en masse, as EP's views suggest. There may be very different merits for each. I often find that the effort of citing the entries leads to an adjustment of the definitions that clarifies the usage of the terms. DCDuring TALK 01:08, 29 August 2008 (UTC)
That logic doesn't really apply to the [[[Sicilian-American]] entry, but I can see why the African-American entry isn't completely SoP. If it's necessary, I'm for separating this request, as per EP's comments.--TBC 02:42, 30 August 2008 (UTC)
Separate these, per above. Otherwise, keep African-American per EP's Maghreb comment, and delete all the rest unless a good argument is made for any.—msh210 22:04, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

American-born Chinese

Delete --Jackofclubs 06:18, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete, ridiculous entry. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:19, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

British-born Chinese

Delete --Jackofclubs 06:18, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete, ridiculous entry. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:19, 25 July 2009 (UTC)


Delete as the current SoP definition. --Jackofclubs 06:18, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

October 2008


This time around, I'm adding the first English definition too - a brand of Californian wine. --Jackofclubs 12:14, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

:This one should perhaps be RfV'd as a brand name that might have enough attributive use for inclusion. DCDuring TALK 19:01, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

It has already passed RfV. What grounds for reopening? DCDuring TALK 19:04, 18 October 2008 (UTC)
How did it pass RFV? Two of the quotations clearly identify it as alcohol. We could use one other. DAVilla 07:50, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

November 2008


Adjective. Attributive use of noun, I think, though def. is not exact match. DCDuring TALK 00:27, 5 November 2008 (UTC)

  • The use of the word curry in the West Indies is different from that in the Indian subcontinent. It always comes before the noun (e.g. curry goat) and seems to be used as an adjective. The dish seems to use different spices (I am not an expert, only having eaten curry goat once (and survived)). SemperBlotto 08:44, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
That raises the question of a split in the etymology. DCDuring TALK 10:33, 5 November 2008 (UTC)

thousand one

I'd rfc'd this, but EP suggested deletion and creation of an Appendix on number-word formation. I agree, though I am not sure that anyone would ever use the Appendix. The entry definitely seems SoP to me. DCDuring TALK 19:56, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

Native English speakers might not use the appendix, but there are lots of fiddly spelling and hyphenation issues for English names of cardinal numbers that non-native speakers would find very useful to have an explanation for. There is also grammar to consider, since these words can function kind of like adjectives (but are not comparable) and kinds of like nouns (but the "plural" forms aren't used the same as the singular). --EncycloPetey 00:43, 9 November 2008 (UTC)
I don't and didn't doubt the utility of the information. I doubt only that it would be found, except by a user being given the link, probably in response to an inquiry. We would need to have a very explicit and elaborate effort to provide hooks for such content. Right now I suspect (are there any facts?) that new users never find appendices that contain what they need. DCDuring TALK 11:15, 9 November 2008 (UTC)
2 cents..I try to put an appendix link under See also, or Usage notes, or whatever is the most useful placing. That way, the user will find the info. In this instance, "See also" in the entry number, and perhaps in specific entries such as one and hundred etc. -- ALGRIF talk 17:40, 10 November 2008 (UTC)
Should we have a suggested layout for number words (and similar classes of entries, like letters, numbers, symbols) that contain such items as these links? Are there particularly good examples of any of these? We also by now must have guidelines about criteria by entries of the various kinds are to be excluded or included. I have had trouble finding them. Or do we just leave it bots and existing RfV/RfD? DCDuring TALK 18:03, 10 November 2008 (UTC)
The templates I set up for {{cardinalbox}} and {{ordinalbox}} were designed to clearly display an Appendix link in cases where an appropriate appendix exists. There are examples on the talk page for {{cardinalbox}} of what this looks like. --EncycloPetey 17:25, 11 November 2008 (UTC)
Oh, and in answer to the other part of your question, Equinox went through the ordinal number entries and standardized/expanded them a few days ago, so you can look at entries for words like twelfth for examples of how they might be done. This doesn't, of course, include the additional problem of coordinating all the various numerical script systems that might be included, since ordinals aren't developed to that level yet the way that the cardinals are. --EncycloPetey 19:30, 14 November 2008 (UTC)


See the tag in the entry for more, but also I can understand having ti to show how ignorant people often fail to indicate the critical tonal differences between the pronunciation of two things that would seem to be pronounced in the same way but surely we do not need full word "improper Pinyin" entries.--50 Xylophone Players talk 12:45, 9 November 2008 (UTC) re-signing...50 Xylophone Players talk 16:30, 4 February 2009 (UTC)

Delete per nom. —RuakhTALK 17:59, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

For similar reasons the Japanese entry at ojo was just deleted. See Talk:ojo while there are very many Chinese entries without diacritics though these are a kind of "mini-index". For consistency I have nominated ou for deletion also.

Perhaps there is an unwritten rule that no-diacritic single syllables are OK whereas no-diacritic whole words are not OK. If this is so then it should be made policy. — hippietrail 07:30, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

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Keep. It doesn't matter whether it is incorrect, it matters whether it is actually in use. Which, clearly, it is here, and here, and here and here, and here, and here, for example. bd2412 T 21:09, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
None of those examples are in a Chinese context. They are all mentions of a foreign word or the title of a foreign work transliterated into the English alphabet in an English language context. As far as I'm aware we don't include every possible transliteration of terms from languages which don't use the Latin script. For Chinese and Japanese we include the standard transliterations and for most other languages we don't include transliterations as entries at all. We also don't include all foreign terms which have been used in an otherwise English context. Are you proposing we change one or both of these policies? — hippietrail 08:39, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
My decision is still to delete. By the way BD4212, did you notice when finding those cites that the entry title is uppercase while all the cites use lowercase? 50 Xylophone Players talk 21:23, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

December 2008

ever since

Is this worth having as a separate entry? It is an intensifier + since in each of its three PoS incarnations, afaict. Other dictionaries seem to have "ever" in usage examples at since. DCDuring TALK 19:23, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Move to RFD and/or delete.msh210 18:11, 3 December 2008 (UTC)
I agree with DCDuring (talkcontribs), dictionaries do see to use "ever" in examples with since, as common practice. Cirt (talk) 07:09, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
I had put this on RfV to give this at least 30 days for someone to come up with citations that show a meaning for one or more of the three PoSes that was not essentially "since (intensified)". DCDuring TALK 16:14, 13 December 2008 (UTC)
I don't see how it's intensified. Using just since in some cases seems just plain awkward. Keep regardless. DAVilla 01:16, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
Which PoS are you referring too? I didn't think of any examples that seemed awkward without "ever". DCDuring TALK 02:03, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
The adverb particularly. Without ever it just sounds too formal. For the other two I'm not sure if it's an intensifier or something else. Saying "ever since" seems to establish a causal link moreso than just "since", which more or less establishes a timeline but does not hint that the two parts are more fundamentally related. I'm sure in some cases, though, it really is just an issue of intensification. Or is the relation I pointed out just another form of intensity? Anyways ever since as a conjunction runs off the tongue more easily at the start of a sentence. That at least seems like use without stressing anything. Also note that it distinguishes this meaning from the other definition of since as a conjuction. 08:39, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

War on Terrorism

POV; SoP. Same likely life and dictionary value as war on poverty, War on Poverty, war on drugs, etc. DCDuring TALK 20:13, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

Delete. I don't think the lifetime is necessarily a factor, but in my view it's encyclopaedic. Equinox 22:23, 22 December 2008 (UTC)
Delete. Bogorm 17:45, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
Keep (and submit to RFV, I suppose). It's not SOP, as it refers to a specific war on terrorism, not any old war on terrorism (and also not the general war on terrorism that includes all specific wars on terrorism).—msh210 19:13, 30 December 2008 (UTC)
Keep - Idiom, same as: World War One, World War Two, World War III, Cold War, Falklands War WritersCramp 17:32, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Keep per Msh, although I wish this logic would have applied to Vietnam War. Any chance we could revisit that vote? DAVilla 07:28, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
The only issue I would have with using the generic "Vietnam War" is which one? Vietnam has had many many wars! Reference WritersCramp 22:47, 9 January 2009 (UTC)
Exactly. There have been many, yet you and I know which one Vietnam War refers to. Yeah, it's in an encyclopedia because you can get a lot of information on it, but "which one?" is a very basic question. If somone would be likely to run across it and want to know what it means, that's why it belongs in a dictionary. DAVilla 08:15, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Keep. And I agree that Vietnam War should have an entry here too. --Jackofclubs 12:44, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Kept. Equinox 01:00, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

War on Terror

Same as above. DCDuring TALK 20:16, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

Delete as for the one above. Equinox 22:24, 22 December 2008 (UTC)
Delete. Idem.Bogorm 17:46, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
Keep per my comments on War on Terrorism.—msh210 19:13, 30 December 2008 (UTC)
Keep - Idiom, same as: World War One, World War Two, World War III, Cold War, Falklands War WritersCramp 17:32, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Not exactly the same, because those are accepted names for wars in history. This isn't a specific war (it's a policy) and the term often has overtones of propaganda. Equinox 08:02, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
Keep and stronger than above. This is not set to stop terror but terrorism. DAVilla 07:30, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
Keep along with War on Terrorisme. --Jackofclubs 12:45, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Kept. Equinox 01:00, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

go apeshit

Synonymous with go postal, go crazy. Go + adjective structure wouldn't seem to warrant an entry. Looking up the adjective should get users what they want. DCDuring Holiday Greetings! 18:34, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

I think I agree with you. I immediately thought of go ape (where ape, unlike apeshit, is not used without go) — but, according to our entry at ape, it can be used that way ("we were ape" in an example sentence, albeit a fabricated one). In any case, if this goes, go ape should go as well. Equinox 21:08, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure I agree with myself on this either. There is currently a discussion about off the deep end/go off the deep end (TR?). I'm thinking that "go" + new adjective/sense leads to free-standing new adjective sense, leads to gradable/comparable adjective sense, but that the "go" form may remain very common, possibly overwhelmingly so ("go ballistic", "go postal", go/get medieval). DCDuring Holiday Greetings! 21:20, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
Keep. To use DC's word, I think this form is "overwhelmingly" common. -- WikiPedant 04:33, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

January 2009

make clear

Same as above. DCDuring Holiday Greetings! 00:07, 11 January 2009 (UTC)

Delete the transitive sense; it's just making something clear (SoP), no better than make unhappy or make worthwhile. I don't understand the intransitive one (is it an error?). Equinox 00:39, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
It seemed erroneous to me but English often surprises me. I put in the intransitive tag to clarify and distinguish. If you can suss out some other reading, good on ya. DCDuring Holiday Greetings! 11:01, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
So sussed. :-)   —RuakhTALK 14:45, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Merge into clear. (Specifically, make clear distinguishes two very different senses of clear that clear lumps together very vaguely as sense #5.) —RuakhTALK 14:45, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Weak delete. Reflexive sense could possibly be at make myself clear. Not sure that it works in any other person. DAVilla 06:12, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Mais si ! The first person singular is admittedly the most common, but other persons and numbers get well over a thousand b.g.c. hits, even without considering variants like "make oneself quite clear" (which gets another several hundred). —RuakhTALK 19:39, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
Weak keep reflexive sense only. DAVilla 07:30, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
Keep as idiomatic, not easy to tell what it means from make + clear. Mglovesfun (talk) 19:22, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

little boy

Given that little girl has been deleted, this should probably follow suit. -- Visviva 07:42, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Delete DCDuring Holiday Greetings! 10:43, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
Delete. See also the "little girl" discussion.—msh210 18:06, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
Hmm… But should little girl have been deleted? Can this sense of little (very young) be used to modify any noun other than boy, girl, child, kid (child)m &c.? If it can be used widely enough, then both little boy and little girl ought to be deleted.
Also consider the similarly-used small boy, small girl, &c.; are they idiomatic? If so, they ought to be created; if not (because this sense of small (very young) can be used to modify a broad enough range of nouns), then the additional sense ought to be added to the entry for small, per the resolution to the little girl RfD.  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 20:01, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
Little also modifies lamb in a nursery rhyme. At least I think it means "young" there not "small in size". And one of the example sentences we have for it is "Did he tell you any embarrassing stories about when she was little?".—msh210 21:54, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
Can one attest "little boy/girl" as definitely meaning "young" and not "small"? I think not, but perhaps it should get its 30 days on RfV. DCDuring Holiday Greetings! 23:12, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
We sometimes use other dictionaries to support meanings. I think there is a case here to state that most/all main dictionaries include little = young. Another example we could use is My little sister. where little = younger. If we accept this defenition into little, then this entry becomes definitely SoP. -- ALGRIF talk 14:20, 15 January 2009 (UTC) I really should have looked at the entry for little before writing this. Doh. Algrif.
I think little boy refers to a fairly specific age-range and should be kept. I don’t know if the age-range varies with the country. I would say that in the U.S., a little boy is a boy between the ages of 2 and 10. It belongs in the category that incluces teen, teenager, young man, adolescent, baby, toddler, youngster, pre-teen, pre-schooler, old man, etc. —Stephen 23:34, 15 January 2009 (UTC)
I agree. little boy and little girl (as well as petite fille and petit garçon in French) should be kept. They are set phrases. But, of course, not little boat, little bird, etc. Lmaltier 18:13, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Forgive me if I'm being pedantic. But doesn't the "growth chain" logic mean we can allow puppy, little dog, adult dog (or adult dog)? Ditto for all the other animals I can think of. And, yes, including little bird. -- ALGRIF talk 12:06, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
But I think that little dog, adult dog or little bird are not set phrases at all (except little bird with its special meaning). Lmaltier 20:38, 9 February 2009 (UTC) Similarly, jeune fille should obviously be accepted, not jeune chien. Lmaltier 20:43, 9 February 2009 (UTC)

I see four deletes (Visviva, DCDuring, Algrif, and myself) and two keeps (SGB and Lmaltier). I don't feel qualified to delete this on such a slim majority of which I'm a member, so I'll leave it and hope someone else deletes it.  :-) msh210 17:09, 25 February 2009 (UTC)

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Delete per little girl --Duncan 20:26, 25 February 2009 (UTC).
Delete as SoP. — Carolina wren discussió 20:20, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep per Stephen and restore little girl. DAVilla 05:41, 2 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep — it’s more common nowadays than boykin (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 02:16, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
Delete as SOP, especially per Algrif. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 02:59, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep, and restore little girl. Algrif has pointed out that my little sister means "my younger sister". But note that little girl does not mean "younger girl"; it means "young girl", so we have two different possible ways that little might be interpreted, but only one of those interpretations applies. This is one of the hallmarks of an idiomatic phrase. --EncycloPetey 18:15, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
But our entry at little has {{context|of a sibling}} for "younger", so that makes it clear, doesn't it? --Duncan 19:20, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
No, because boy is not a sibling term. We are discussing "little boy" and the associated "little girl". --EncycloPetey 19:24, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
But that's my point: "boy/girl" aren't sibling terms, "little" as "younger" applies to sibling terms, so "little boy/girl" doesn't mean "younger boy/girl" - according to the "little" entry, without any need for repeating it under "little boy/girl" entries. --Duncan 20:09, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
Your point does not make sense. In the phrase little boy, "little" means ony "young" or "immature", as in "He cried like a little boy." It does not mean "small". The combination therefore always relies on a specific meaning out of the many that could potentially apply. That makes this an idiomatic construction under the CFI guidelines. --EncycloPetey 19:24, 26 April 2009 (UTC)
Hmm. EP: "Little can mean young or younger, but little girl can only mean young girl, not younger girl." Dnc: "But we say at little it only means younger when reffering to siblings." EP: "That's irrelevant as girl isn't a sibling term." Dnc: "Exactly, that's why the younger sense doesn't apply." EP: "That argument doesn't make sense, because little girl cannot mean small girl." I'm afraid this kind of arguing is too subtle for my simple brain.
Notwithstanding if little girl really can't mean small girl (I didn't know that), that would be a reason for keeping the entry, so I'm striking my previous "delete". --Duncan 20:41, 1 May 2009 (UTC)
Addendum: I have found a quote with attributive use (and there are many more found easily): --EncycloPetey 02:56, 27 April 2009 (UTC)
  • 1959, Robert Chester Ruark, Poor no more: a novel‎, page 65
    "I didn't realize it until I looked at you in those little boy pants. You look like a grown man playing kid."
I think that the reason why litte boy and little girl are set phrases is that girl and boy cover too many senses and ages, making more specific phrases necessary. Also note that Wikipedia has a little girl page (a redirect) and that TheFreeDictionary defines little girl (but not with a good definition, in my opinion). Lmaltier 17:59, 26 April 2009 (UTC)
What does “set phrase” or “more common nowadays than” have anything to do with inclusion? CFI doesn't include phrases that surpass some frequency of occurrence. If you want to use this as a criterion, then propose adding it to CFI.
And attributive use justifies the inclusion of proper names, not just any phrases. Little boy pants (119 Google Books hits) doesn't make this phrase an more dictionary-worthy than 40-year history (743 hits) invites inclusion of 40-year or 40 years.
Misquoting CFI is just grasping at straws. Let's include terms if they actually meet the guidelines, not just because we really, really want to. Michael Z. 2009-06-06 15:01 z


This is not an acceptable alternate of playwright according to the OED, nor can it be found in any other dictionary source. Thanks. -Sketchmoose 15:43, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

  • No - it is a totally different word. the OED has this (under "play") - playright n. Obs. an author's proprietary right of performance of a musical or dramatic composition. SemperBlotto 15:50, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
keep. At worst this entry needs the obsolete legal sense. The RfD once more raises the question of what makes a spelling a misspelling vs. an alternative spelling and may also raise the queston of what makes a misspelling a "common" one. There are many current uses of the term in edited works where "playwright" might be preferred by some (like me). In any event, no speedy deletion. DCDuring TALK 17:22, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
I have inserted "common" misspelling and given it an "rfd-sense" tag to take advantage of any attention this entry may have so far received to get more attention to the alternative/mis-spelling question. DCDuring TALK 17:30, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
This is fine with a proper definition. Before, all that was there was "alternate spelling of playwright" which is simply not correct, and I had never heard of it used in the "proprietary rights" sense so I didn't know to correct it to that (nor was it turned up in any of my dictionary searches, presumably due to its obsolescence). Thanks for looking in to it. -Sketchmoose 22:41, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
It may well go back to being an alternative spelling based on being fairly common in edited works. DCDuring TALK 23:02, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
This is weird... When I search for "a playright" to filter out most (but not all) of the legal uses, I get 0.5% of the hits for "a playwright" on the web (~548,000:~2,500). But when I switch to Google Books, "a playright" jumps to 9% (5,420:504). Forcing the issue [2] brings this down to 374, or 6.9%, which is still astronomical. Only a small fraction of those seem to be legal uses; scannos don't seem to be a factor. WTF? Is the web suddenly better-proofread than print? -- Visviva 02:29, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
I believe that all(?) Google searches for "playright" will count hits for "play right" and "playright", though only the latter are emboldened. I have taken to doing separate "playright -play-right" and "-playright play-right" searches to get what I thought I was getting with searches for "playright" and "play right" alone. I also get significantly different results for "playwright" and "playwright -play-wright". DCDuring TALK 12:28, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
The problem with that is that it also throws out any pages that have, for example, "play" and "right" in addition to "playright" (as will often be the case in a discussion of the legal concept).
Google's handling of quotes has been a little inconsistent lately, but the "+" operator seldom lets me down. If you're suspicious of the results from a simple quoted search, you can for example search for '+playright "a playright"' to make sure that all searched pages actually have the word in question, not just an approximation. (That search actually gives me the same results as above, at this writing.) -- Visviva 14:40, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
Just to make clear the effect of the search methods as I understand it:
"AB" yields hits of "AB" and "ABs" (and includes "'A-B'" (and perhaps ""A-B"" etc)), but emboldens only "AB"
"ABs" yields hits of "ABs"
"A-B -AB" yields hits of "A-B" "A B" (as well as "A/B" "A>B", etc) without AB on the same page.
"AB -A-B" yields hits of "AB" without "A-B", "A B", and their fellow travelers on the same page.
I have not examined all of the possibilities raised.
Because I haven't yet found documentation of this, I suspect that Google is:
  1. not committed to keeping it working just this way and in every search domain;
  2. not desirous of providing much evidence to SEOers who game their system; or
  3. not desirous of facilitating searches that are more resource-intensive. DCDuring TALK 12:21, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Also "a+playright" gives me many times more hits than "a-playright", which gives the same as ""a playright"". DCDuring TALK 12:32, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
On the digression which generated the methodological subdigression, I get 880K web hits and 5500 bgc hits for "a-playright"; 596K (66%) web hits and 536 (10%) bgc hits for "a-playwright", more in line with expectations. DCDuring TALK 12:32, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

Kept.msh210 00:46, 22 June 2009 (UTC)


Sense 5 = "A ritual reversal of a social hierarchy". Makes little sense to me and suggests no meaning of "carnival" that I know. -- WikiPedant 04:30, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

That refers to what the annual festival Carnival is about. It's more of a description of the spirit of the Catholic carnival festive season than a definition. --EncycloPetey 18:18, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Messerschmitt 109, Focke-Wulf 190

User:Sawbackedeagle added these in good faith before he was aware of the CFI. While we have (and probably should have) the likes of Messerschmitt, I think that these very specific designations are probably no-nos. (Compare Xbox and Xbox 360.) Equinox 00:02, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

Move to RfV. It is not very hard to find attributive use of Messerschmitt 109 (with "pilot", "squadron", for example). It would thereby meet our standard for such entries. Focke-Wulf 190 might also. DCDuring TALK 00:59, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

Where are you seeing that in the CFI? Seems to me at first glance at least that these are not idiomatic, nevermind whether they're attested (in attributive use or otherwise).—msh210 19:59, 26 January 2009 (UTC)
I has thinking that these are product/brand names, like Concorde. Mind you, I am not sure that the collocations do qualify. DCDuring TALK 20:11, 26 January 2009 (UTC)
I would recommend that we delete these, but keeping (or creating) the individual parts such as Messerschmitt and 109,, and Focke-Wulf and 190. There is a tendency for the company name to indicate these models if no other context is mentioned. The numbers were commonly used on their own. A more likely method is to use the common abbreviation such as ME 109 etc.--Dmol 05:34, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Agreed, delete (or move to ME 109/FW 190). Not idiomatic regardless of whether they can be attested, much like Xbox 360. DAVilla 06:26, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Move to the abbreviated forms per DAVilla. Cheers! bd2412 T 16:57, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

steam engine

Redundant senses, would normally steam ahead, but am I missing something? DAVilla 06:21, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

To me the definitions 1,2 and 4 are variations of the same theme. They could all be combined into this:
  1. An engine that converts thermal energy of steam into mechanical energy, especially one in which the steam drives pistons in cylinders.
Turbines should not be completely excluded from "steam-enginehood", since they utilize the same physical phenomenon (work produced by expanding steam) as "true" steam engines, and many sources, including Wikipedia, count them as steam engines. --Hekaheka 21:19, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Possibly, yes. However, if some people would use steam engine to mean something that is specifically a piston engine and never a steam turbine, then 1 and 2 should be left distinct. DAVilla 07:46, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
They're not truly distinct, but they are different. The first definition only applies to something applied with external steam, like a steam hammer. The second only applies to a piston engine (special case of first definition or a restricted sense of the 4th). The third is a locomotive only. The fourth is the general definition, and includes the boiler and applies to steam power generation and everything. So I don't see that any of it is redundant, although a casual look may suggest that. But they do appear to be all in use.Wolfkeeper 12:51, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
Could this use cleanup? If not, some examples. DAVilla 07:28, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

I'm under the impression that normally the term "steam engine" would refer to a piston-type engine that uses steam as its working fluid. This may be due to the fact that piston engines were the dominating type of steam engines for about 100 to 150 years after James Watt. Especially in theoretical treatise one may group piston engines, turbines and probably some other devices together because they exploit the same thermodynamical phenomenon called Rankine cycle. However, in practice one would seldom call a steam turbine "steam engine", because it would be confusing. I think that senses 1 and 4 were essentially the same, and I have edited the entry in a way that would combine them to the sense #1. With this change, I think sense #4 could be deleted. Btw, the steam source is always external to the prime mover and it does not matter whether the steam source (boiler) and prime mover are integrated into same structure or not. --Hekaheka 21:31, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

by committee

1 SoP; 2 tendentious definitions. DCDuring TALK 01:30, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

Sense 1 is either redundant or wrong, AFAICT. I mean, committee proceedings aren't necessarily protracted, and if I said "it was done by committee" I wouldn't necessarily mean that it was done slowly. If the entry is kept in some form, we should include the truly SoP sense (currently lacking), since "by committee" usually just means "by committee".
I would merge senses 2 and 3, though I'm not sure of the exact wording. -- Visviva 07:53, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
ok what do you think of the entry now? -- Thisis0 19:22, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I like it. The wording could be more concise, but I think these are both senses that we should have. -- Visviva 15:29, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
Weak keep for sense 2. I think it could be (and has been) used humorously when there's clearly no actual committee involved. Sense 1 feels like SoP. (Actually, when a word or phrase has a non-literal meaning, like sense 2 here, people often seem to put the obvious literal meaning as sense 1. I'm never sure about that: do we have to spell out a clear sum of parts merely because there's a secondary sense that isn't the same thing?) Equinox 22:26, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I could have no greater hope for this term than it be defined by committee. DAVilla 06:19, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
Hahaaahaaaha!!! :D -- Thisis0 17:22, 4 February 2009 (UTC)
Keep, often used in a non-literal way (baseball: closer by committee). Mglovesfun (talk) 22:15, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

by steam

See steam#Noun sense 4,5. DCDuring TALK 01:40, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

Which you just added. Please exemplify in a phrase that does not use "by". DAVilla 06:02, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
  • 1845, Frederick Knight Hunt, The Rhine: Its Scenery, and Historical and Legendary Associations [a/k/a The Rhine Book], reprint, ISBN 1421266377, page 5,
    The traveller who decides upon visiting the Rhine will do well to take steam to Antwerp.
msh210 17:24, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
Note, though, that take steam seems to have been an idiom meaning be tugged or something like that. So maybe that's the idiom being used in the quotation I just posted, and it's not an example of "steam" (per se, in the senses required).—msh210 17:33, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

February 2009


Sense "(transitive) To place on a hook" redundant with previous "(transitive) To cause (something) to be suspended". I mean, it's a subset of the previous, but I don't think anyone uses "hang" to mean "place on a hook, to the exclusion of suspending it by other means": no one would say "I said to hang it, not to suspend it, so why didn't you put it on a hook?".—msh210 23:27, 4 February 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Equinox 21:33, 6 February 2009 (UTC)
lol, agree with msh; delete. 50 Xylophone Players talk 21:42, 6 February 2009 (UTC)
Delete per nom, unless it can actually be cited -- which, per nom, seems quite unlikely. -- Visviva 12:01, 8 February 2009 (UTC)
I asked you to hang your coat, so why is it still hanging on the chair?
Keep. DAVilla 12:45, 9 March 2009 (UTC)
I think that that's a social-knowledge thing, not a meaning of the word. Meaning, when someone says "hang a coat", especially when he asks someone to hang a coat, he means on a hook (or hanger), even though the word hang doesn't mean that.msh210 00:48, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
How can the word not mean that, if that's how it's used? In such cases, hang means to hang up neatly, on a hook or hanger or however it should be. If someone were to say "dangle", "drape", "droop", or "suspend a coat", it wouldn't mean the same thing. DAVilla 06:59, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Consider this analogue: Someone tells his kid "take out the garbage". He means for the kid to take the garbage from inside the house to outside the house and put it in an outdoor garbage bin. But the meaning of "take out the garbage" is to take the garbage from inside the house to outside the house; that the kid is then expected to put it in a garbage bin is not because that's the meaning of the words spoken but because that's the way garbage is taken out. Likewise here: if a parent asks a kid to hang his coat, he means to put it on a hanger or hook not because that's the meaning of "hang your coat" but because that's how one hangs a coat. Another analogue, in case you didn't like my first: Someone tells his underling "make ten copies of this report, one for each person at the meeting": the underling then knows to copy them onto white paper. Not because "make copies" precludes fuchsia paper, but merely because that's how one makes copies (in that office). If a parent tells a kid "dangle your coat" then of course he'll be justified in not hanging it on a hanger, but that's not because "hang" means on a hanger: it's merely because the instruction was deliberately worded oddly and therefore implies that the action should/can be odd. Here's an exception, which shows that "suspend" and "hang" are the same: If a kid knows his parent likes to use weird words, and the parent frequently says things like "set up your bed" (instead of "make") or "fix dinner" (in areas where that's not the idiom, as a deliberate oddity), then the kid should certainly hang the coat on a hanger if the parents says "suspend your coat".msh210 17:27, 23 June 2009 (UTC)
If you can find documented use of suspend to mean hang clothing properly then we should include it. I also think that copy should say "especially on white paper" and that take out the garbage is idiomatic. DAVilla 04:14, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
Fwiw, the sense was added in this diff.—msh210 20:21, 9 February 2009 (UTC)
Merge definitions. --EncycloPetey 17:32, 15 February 2009 (UTC)

Deleted (somewhat merged).​—msh210 18:27, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

rate adjustment cap

SoP.—msh210 21:36, 9 February 2009 (UTC)

delete No, wait! How is the user supposed to know it's not a type of headgear? DCDuring TALK 23:07, 9 February 2009 (UTC)
As a non-financial-type person, I would have had no idea that this referred to a limit on one day's rate adjustment, rather than over (say) the entire period of the loan. If the definition is correct, I would be inclined to keep the entry as more specific than the sum of its parts. -- Visviva 03:07, 10 February 2009 (UTC)
No, no. As with almost any long-term contract, there are unsurprising conventional intervals at which the rate on an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) or other variable-rate loan can be adjusted: monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, annually, biennially; possibly starting after some initial period. A very large business loan might have more frequent adjustments. It is just a "cap" on the amount of the "adjustment" of the interest "rate". There is plenty of business jargon to include, but I can't see this. DCDuring TALK 04:18, 10 February 2009 (UTC)
If some mortgage broker told me "this loan has a rate adjustment cap of 2%" without further explanation, I would probably assume that applied to the lifetime of the loan, rather than a single adjustment period. That would be a rather serious, perhaps bankruptcy-inducing, mistake.
That said, I'm not sure the definition is strictly accurate; "rate adjustment cap" is quite rare in use, and about 90% of the time it appears with some modifier ("annual", "period", "lifetime", etc.) which makes the specific meaning clear. I suspect the remaining cases would be clear from context. On the other hand, it seems clear that we should have an entry for adjustment cap, which is fairly common, and clearly has a more precise meaning than the sum of its parts. Compare google:"a rate adjustment cap of" (1 hit) and google:"an adjustment cap of" (28 hits). Perhaps this entry could be redirected to that one? -- Visviva 04:46, 10 February 2009 (UTC)

Deleted. Adjustment cap added to WT:REE with explanation.msh210 00:54, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

alphabetical order

Per asciibetical order RFD above. You can (and people do!) order by practically anything, e.g. numerical order, ASCII order, ANSI order, Unicode order, Hebrew alphabetical order... Equinox 22:36, 11 February 2009 (UTC)

But can't this be used specifically to mean the standard human-readable alphabet sequence (A,a,B,b), as opposed to asciibetical order and other technically "alphabetical" sequences? I mean, asciibetical order is alphabetical, but it specifically is not what is meant by "alphabetical order". -- Visviva 17:03, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
Yes ("data is sorted in ASCII collated order rather than alphabetical order"), but that's still a matter for alphabetical versus asciibetical; the fact that it's an order is still SoP, isn't it? By the above token it seems we should also have alphabetical sort and asciibetical sort; alphabetically arranged and asciibetically arranged, etc. etc. At some point we have to give the reader credit for being able to put two words together. Equinox 17:23, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
(edit conflict):
IOW, even so, isn't the distinction/semantic relation in each case entirely in the adjective alone? DCDuring TALK 17:27, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
It should be kept, as a set phrase (but probably not the other phrases mentioned above). And how could you guess what alphabetical order means from alphabetical and order? It seems impossible, you can guess that the order is related to the alphabet, that's all. Lmaltier 17:33, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
Keep In English, we usually use alphabetical order to mean in the order of the English alphabet, and not of just any alphabet. At the very least, we need this entry with a usage note to indicate such. The "alphabetical order" of Hungarian, Estonian, and even Spanish will throw many English speakers. Additionally, as Lmaltier notes, this is more than sum of parts. Alphabetical means "pertaining to the alphabet", but alphabetical order means that items have been sorted in sequence according to their initial letter. This is more information than is contained in the components. --EncycloPetey 17:30, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
But the same initial-letter implication is equally true for constructs like alphabetical listing, alphabetical sort, alphabetical catalogue, alphabetical index... do you support such entries as well? Equinox 17:40, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
No. An alphabetical listing is "a listing that is alphabetical". An alphabetical index is "an index that is alphabetical". But alphabetical order is NOT merely "an order that is alphabetical". Part of the reason for that order has so many meanings, but part of it is the slight idiomaticity and use as a set phrase. The correpsonding meaning of alphabetical is a back-sense from alphabetical order (as Visviva notes below). --EncycloPetey 17:48, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
Then how is this — { Hebrew, Cyrillic, English, Spanish } — not an "alphabetical listing"? It's a listing of alphabets! Equinox 17:53, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
It would be an "alphabet list", not an "alphabetical listing", except for the fact that Cyrillic is a script, not an alphabet. There is more than one alphabet in the Cyrillic script, and these don't all include the same letters. --EncycloPetey 16:57, 16 February 2009 (UTC)
EP seems to believe that, for multi-word entries that include even one polysemic word, the potential for confusion among benighted users is sufficient to warrant inclusion, even though this is not to be found in WT:CFI. Until such time as this criterion is in WT:CFI, I would have thought such argument would be a mere make-weight, not determinative. DCDuring TALK 18:05, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
You neglected to read this sentence in WT:CFI (under Idiomaticity): "Compounds are generally idiomatic, even when the meaning can be clearly expressed in terms of the parts. The reason is that the parts often have several possible senses, but the compound is often restricted to only some combinations of them." Since this argument is in CFI, I assume your position is now to support inclusion. --EncycloPetey 06:00, 16 February 2009 (UTC)
I may be wrong, but I've always thought of the "alphabetical" in phrases like "alphabetical sorting" as being derived from alphabetical order, and basically meaning "of, pertaining to or following alphabetical order". That's certainly the way the concepts are structured in my benighted little brain; whether it corresponds to the actual historical derivation I don't know. -- Visviva 17:42, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
Of the nine OneLook dictionary entries I looked at 4 had only the "order" sense and the balance had the two senses that our entry now has (thanks, EP). No other dictionary includes alphabetical order as a related/derived term, though it appears in a few of the usage examples. I think that does indicate that most lexicographers view it as SoP/non-idiomatic. DCDuring TALK 18:05, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
To make clearer what I mean: in an alphabetical order, you give priority to the first letter then, if needed, to the second letter, etc. This is essential to the meaning of alphabetical order, and cannot be deduced from alphabetical, nor from order. Lmaltier 07:20, 16 February 2009 (UTC)
Right. The list
a I am an be he is we are has she the was you been have they were
is ordered according to the sequence of the alphabet, but is a numerical rather than lexicographical ordering. The question is if alphabetical conveys this information. If one of its definitions should include the idea of established orderings, then this term could be deleted'. On the other hand, a lot of these collocations would make great phrasebook entries. DAVilla 12:17, 9 March 2009 (UTC)
Even beyond that, in English alphabetical order for surnames, Mc / Mac is treated separately from M, so there is actually more than one alphabetical order in English, one of which does not follow the sequence of the alphabet. --EncycloPetey 07:25, 16 February 2009 (UTC)
Delete.msh210 16:58, 25 February 2009 (UTC)

Delete  This is a lovely sum-of-parts phrase, where part B clearly points to sense 2 of part A. Michael Z. 2009-03-24 17:25 z


Rfd-redundant. Video game sense seems to be some kind of special case of first sense or an idiosyncratic usage, but I leave this to specialists in this context. DCDuring TALK 17:21, 15 February 2009 (UTC)

Not sure. Look at the example sentences. Whether they are typical and reasonable I don't know, but if so it seems (for the noun) we can "perform a glitch", as though it's a technique or skill; for sense 1 we would say something like "cause a glitch". Same applies to the verb, where we have "glitch into" and glitching appears to be a deliberate process or action rather than a momentary tweak. Equinox 17:27, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
If we had citations of real usage in that sense, I could agree. I was hoping that someone could vouch for the usage. DCDuring TALK 14:50, 17 February 2009 (UTC)
Did you even look? http://www.google.com/search?q=%22he%20glitched%22&sa=N&hl=en&tab=pw gives lots for just one form, http://www.google.com/search?num=50&hl=en&safe=off&q=%22he+glitched+into%22&btnG=Search has really precise examples. The old form of the word was used to reference a thing that malfunctioned, now is used to reference a person doing a specific action. --Connel MacKenzie 02:20, 21 February 2009 (UTC)
I hadn't look. I often leave senses outside my experience for someone else to cite. I thought we had some folks who like or know gaming terms. DCDuring TALK 11:34, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

hippie movement

SoP, like feminist movement, antiwar movement. Even its creator wasn't sure about it :) Equinox 18:14, 20 February 2009 (UTC)

I dunno. Not all "hippie" "movement"s are the "hippie movement" (fried egg). Meets the oh-so-rigorous two-sided polysemy test. The eight senses of "movement" have to be laboriously checked to see how they correspond with the two senses of "hippie", requiring as many as 16 efforts to construct phrasal meanings and compare to the user's source or intended meaning. Although there isn't a WP article with the exact title, there is w:History of the hippie movement. It's also a whole populated (99 members, 7 subcategories) category on Wikipedia. No question as to its attestability. I'm sure it would meet the single-word translation test in a quorum of languages. Doesn't it seem like a set phrase to you? DCDuring TALK 19:45, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
This isn't an attack on you by any means, but IMO that's ridiculous. Suppose I speak of "castle walls", a very common phrase; well, it's not the sense of "castle" as in "move the king in chess", so do we need an entry for that? How about "lentil soup"? Well, it's not the figurative sense of "soup" as in primordial mess, so we need an entry. "Cow's milk"? Because the cow isn't an ugly woman. Just madness. Equinox 22:41, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
I am interested in discovering some rules that would allow us to include worthwhile multi-word, not obviously idiomatic, noun-noun phrases. This entry is as good a single test case as any as to what entries we find worthwhile and what rules might permit them. As far as I can tell it doesn't meet any of our idiom criteria, but it does meet all of our proposed relaxed criteria that have been bruited. I really don't know what folks think about this one. It seems not harmful and neither useful nor useless to me. DCDuring TALK 00:24, 21 February 2009 (UTC)
It puzzles me that you can say this doesn't meet any of our idiom criteria just after saying that it meets the fried egg test. -- Visviva 05:00, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
But it isn't technical, unless nostalgia or sociology count. DCDuring TALK 19:51, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
History isn't a technical field? -- Visviva 05:00, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
There are many movements in which hippies participate, even today, yet there is no longer a "hippie movement". Thus, as DCDuring notes, it is significantly more specific than the sum of its parts. Note that it is also generally the hippie movement; if it weren't usually written in lower case we would not hesitate to treat it as a proper noun. By the same token I think a useful definition could be written for "feminist movement" and possibly even for "antiwar movement" (though that one is trickier). All that said, the entry as written is not particularly helpful. Neutral. -- Visviva 05:00, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
Frankly, I thought that I had mispoken when I said that it had met the "fried egg" test. I sometimes think there is a difference between the "fried egg" test and mere one-sided polysemy. Nobody has found it necessary to clarify this for me. But one narrow reading of the "fried egg" test would require:
  1. two distinct attestable uses of the term, eg:
    1. "egg that is fried" (SoP) and
    2. "an egg that is shallow fried" (whatever that means, I think a photo might be necessary at the entry).
  2. the more common one (2) being a subclass of the other, and
  3. the sense of the modifier (shallow-fried) as used in the phrase not attestable with other nouns.
Is this what the "fried egg" test means? DCDuring TALK 11:59, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
That is basically my reading of it, yes; the key thing being that a fried egg is not strictly fried+egg for any combination of senses. Thus, there is no risk of the reductio ad absurdum to which the polysemy criterion is subject (per Equinox above), which means we can dispense with shades of gray: something either meets the fried egg test, and therefore merits inclusion, or it doesn't. But interpretations of the test seem to differ from one Wiktionarian to the next. This is not particularly surprising; how often do more than two Wiktionarians agree on anything?  :-D -- Visviva 12:28, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
The [[fried egg]] vs. RfD nom decision is a bit hard for me to grasp in part because the definition is/was worded using the UK term shallow-fry. I'm still not sure I know what fried egg in its non-SoP and non-golf sense really means. Is the picture right? Or does the term just exclude deep-fried eggs?
Assuming the Visviva/During reading of the "fried egg" test is the sense of the entire court, then don't we have to attest that "hippie movement" is actually used in some other way(s), using the just the applicable senses? DCDuring TALK 12:53, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
My understanding comes from w:Fried egg: "Scrambled eggs, though fried, are not considered 'fried eggs'." That is, I take the "fried egg" test to apply when the resulting term is more specific than its parts, even if you choose the right senses for the parts, provided that this specificity is linguistic (the term could logically have other meanings, but doesn't) rather than natural (there's only one item that could be described by the term, and it just happens to be fairly specific).
The problem is that fried egg then fails the "fried egg" test, because one of the senses of fried is "(specifically, of an egg) Being a fried egg. / He always ate his eggs fried, never scrambled." We were missing said sense until just now, but that's a fact of Wiktionary, not a fact of English.
RuakhTALK 14:16, 22 February 2009 (UTC)
I think it would meet the Visviva/During interpretation, because the sense of "fried" at fried is "fried egg"-specific. Of course, as currently defined at [[fried egg]], it is SoP because scrambled eggs and omelets are shallow-fried. The test can't be that all fried eggs are "shallow-fried", not "deep-fried". If we are going to rely on the "fried egg" test right, we need to make sure that the case is accurate and well written. Is the correct definition: "An egg, fried, with an unbroken yolk."? DCDuring TALK 16:34, 22 February 2009 (UTC)

Empire State Building

WT:CFI#Names_of_specific_entities This is specifically listed as an example of something we should not include. Genius. Equinox 00:30, 23 February 2009 (UTC)

The problem is in WT:CFI. It's been cited in attributive-type use, mostly with citations of "an Empire State Building". See the citations page. DCDuring TALK 00:42, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
Oops, my fault. The example at WT:CFI prompted me to have a look, and so I compiled citations:Empire State Building (I see I was too lazy to format them correctly). I don't know if they're all suitably attributive, but all invoke the reader's understanding of what an Empire State Building is. Also, the theme of building one out of toothpicks seem to be pretty common. Never thought of updating the guideline after that. Michael Z. 2009-02-23 01:24 z
I'm a little unclear as whether the "an Empire State Building" citations have won acceptance as indicating attributive use. I think they should. I have just cited Eiffel Tower with great ease using http://corpus.byu.edu/. It allows a search for a word or phrase followed by a particular PoS, eg "Eiffel Tower" followed by a noun, to find attributive use as an adjective. DCDuring TALK 01:40, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
I believe they have always been accepted as such, in that no entry with a sufficient number of such citations has ever been deleted. This is as it should be IMO; whether considered strictly "attributive" or not, such citations show that there is something useful for us to document, beyond the simple encyclopedic facts. Keep as cited, and let's mention its use as a byword for a large, impressive structure in the entry. -- Visviva 15:10, 24 February 2009 (UTC)
Delete. Unlike the precedent one this is no wonder of the world. Bogorm 14:33, 24 February 2009 (UTC)
"Membership in the set of wonders of the world (ancient, modern, or natural)", is not a member of the set of criteria for inclusion, but is in the set of red herrings with respect to inclusion. DCDuring TALK 14:48, 24 February 2009 (UTC)
Bogorm, compare the respective citations pages. I did a bit of work to show that Empire State Building is part of the language, in a small way. Can you add some quotes which shows how Statue of Zeus at Olympia is used in English? If not, then it should go, because this is not an encyclopedia. Michael Z. 2009-03-24 16:17 z
Keep and change CFI. DAVilla 06:10, 11 March 2009 (UTC)

dummy node

1. Definition is wrong: a dummy node is not a "programming technique"; it is a node. 2. Sum of parts. It's a node (any kind, in any data structure) that is a dummy. We can also have (in various other data structures) dummy elements, dummy keys, dummy values, etc. ad infinitum. Equinox 20:29, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Delete. 04:07, 6 March 2009 (UTC)
Deleted. Equinox 00:50, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

tool-assisted speedrun

SoP: it's a speedrun (playing through a video game as fast as possible) where the player is assisted by the use of tools (such as the ability to rewind to a previous point when recording, or something that handles jumping or firing automatically — it can be any tool). Equinox 21:19, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Delete. 03:34, 6 March 2009 (UTC)
Deleted. Equinox 00:56, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

romaji (Japanese)

As the entry says, misspelling. But merely being a misspelling does not warrant an entry. Needless to say, it is not listed in the first five Japanese dictionaries at hand, nor do their corresponding entries at rōmaji say anything about "common misspellings":

  1. Nihon Kokugo Daijiten
  2. Daijirin
  3. Daijisen
  4. Shinmeikai Kokugo Jiten
  5. Meikyō Kokugo Jiten

Should be removed. Bendono 09:30, 28 February 2009 (UTC)

We’ve discussed this issue several times. It isn’t a misspelling, it’s an alternative spelling. The macron is difficult to type for most people and it is common to use ou, ô, or simply o instead. Keep Japanese romaji with a link to rōmaji. But if you consider it to be a common misspelling, we do keep common misspellings with links to the correct spelling. Keep in either case. —Stephen 09:44, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
If anyone can show that this is actually used in writing Japanese (outside of the limited contexts in which all languages are occasionally transcribed into another writing system), then that would certainly change the debate. But so far no such evidence has been presented even for the legitimate romaji forms (despite a great deal of bloviating from people whose opinions I would normally respect), let alone for these debased ones. -- Visviva 09:54, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
I will have to disagree about being alternative spellings. However, I will agree that typing diacritics can be difficult for some. Redirects (or See...) are generally frowned upon here, but I would support them for the purpose of usability.
If my original comment was not clear, the corresponding ろまじ and ロマジ for which this romanization gives as romaji are equally unattested. Bendono 10:12, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
Delete this and any similar cases. The English entry (which should sail through RFV) ensures that anyone who lands on this page will find the information they need , whether directly or indirectly. The farce of "romaji" entries is bad enough without including ad hoc forms that don't even comply with the standard romanization scheme. If we keep this, I should get to upload 10 different romanizations for every Korean word. -- Visviva 09:54, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
That’s fine for this particular case, but most of these are Japanese only and do not have English entries. Native Japanese-speakers know the spelling and know how to type not only the kanji and kana, but also the romaji...but English Wiktionary is not for them, it is for native English-speakers, few of whom can type kanji or kana, and most of whom don’t know how to type macrons or even when a macron should be typed. The spelling without the macron is to make it easier for English-speakers to access the Japanese words that they are interested in. We should keep all the spellings without macrons just as we do with Latin and Old English.
Korean now has a very nice standard transliteration that uses no diacritics and that anybody can type, and that is enough to make Korean accessible. Likewise, there is no need to have any of the other many spellings that many Japanese words can have. We don’t need roumaji or rômaji, lomaji, loumaji, and so on. Having the one common spelling that most English-speakers use, which is romaji, is quite enough. —Stephen 10:54, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
I could agree with that, but only if I was convinced that the others would be removed. If a specific policy were enacted which did away with diacritics altogether, and only allowed for non-diacritic entries, then that would be something. However, while I know little about Japanese, I think that there would be some folks who would disagree with that. Note that Latin and Old English do not lack macrons and such in entry titles to make them easier to find, but rather because they are an academic convention which did not exist in native writings. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 11:12, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
'Delete, per Visviva. This is completely untenable. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 09:57, 28 February 2009 (UTC)
Keep as macrons and such are not used in all forms of romanji, some forms use no macrons at all. It is a non-Hepburn and stripped-Hepburn spelling. As shown in this travel blog: [3][4] - it is used in written form. This translation chart also does not use macrons: [5]. There's also this that explains IME Romaji [6] 09:39, 11 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete It is a misspelling. Noone is denying that. It is disturbing to think that such discussion needs to be done to correct this. All forms of romanization (Hepburn, Kunrei, and Nihonshiki) distinguish between short and long vowels. It is crucial to the understanding of the word. As Hepburn is the most common, as well as being used here, the macron too is required. This misspelling must be removed. 04:42, 28 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete per Bendono and Visviva. In addition, the listed ろまじ and ロマジ are also not in any Japanese dictionary. 04:36, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

March 2009

infinite recursion

SoP, not idiomatic. (Note: I also just removed a secondary computing sense, since the first sense says it all for computing as well.) P.S. Is this a reasonable sort of RFD nomination? Connel has been remarking (1, 2) that SoP isn't sufficient as a nomination, whereas quite a few such RFDs went ahead before without question. Where I say that, I do also mean to suggest that it's not idiomatic (cf. CFI's "this is a door" example). Equinox 21:01, 5 March 2009 (UTC)

Since this is a technical term I think it should be kept. I found SB's computing definition much more informative than the generic definition that remains. If it were just the generic definition that were required then of course, delete it, but being a technical term the other makes it worth keeping. DAVilla 02:45, 6 March 2009 (UTC)
Even though it's just a recursion (usual computing sense) that happens to be infinite? Whether you're a programmer or not, these two words together are still an adjective qualifying a noun, just like recursive loop, infinite loop, recursive method — not an inextricable two-word phrase. The description might have been useful encyclopaedically but that's Wikipedia's area. Equinox 02:50, 6 March 2009 (UTC)
I'm reconsidering. DAVilla 13:25, 7 March 2009 (UTC)
It isn't "recursion without limits", infinite recursion is the endless repetition of a specific instance of recursion. I had to think for a bit on this one too, but I think the combination is specific enough compared to the breadth of the components that it qualifies under CFI. This specific conecpt is very important in both computing and mathematics. --EncycloPetey 18:16, 15 March 2009 (UTC)
Well, I don't think it has to be a specific instance. Why do you say that? On what evidence do you base it? I think it usually refers to a repeated specific instance, but that might well be something you take from context and domain-specific knowledge; it doesn't necessarily rule out other possibilities. Equinox 00:25, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
But if we have no evidence that those "other possibilities" are ever intended, then the point is moot. Our entries describe how the words are actually used, not how they might be construed. --EncycloPetey 05:57, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
Okay. How do you feel about This recursion is infinite, or recursive in an infinite way? Do these indicate the same sort of thing as infinite recursion, and if so don't they suggest that it's a sense of one word or the other, and not this specific two-word combination? Equinox 22:15, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
It's taken me some time to think this over. I have to conclude that "This recursion is infinite" does not mean the same thing to me as infinite recursion (in the mathematical sense), but I'm having a difficult time articulating why that is and how the two constructions differ in meaning. I can say that the sentence seems very awkward to me. On the other hand, "recursive in an infinite way" seems to describe the same concept, and "This recursion is infinite" does seem to convey the computing sense of infinite recursion. I wish we had more mathematicians active here. --EncycloPetey 05:06, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep. The difference is that infinite recursion applies to a single construct or occasionally a tight system (such as two interdependent functions) which never exits, but typically doing some repetitive, misdirected calculation at the same time, whereas a program can continue without end for other reasons, such as never receiving any input. Also, this is generally seen as a fault (unless the meta language is specifically designed to handle it, but those languages are more mathematical than the usual iterative style), whereas a program that is designed to run forever, though it recurses infinitely, by doing useful work is not an infinite recursion in the same meaning, only in a broader sense. DAVilla 13:23, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

Considering what happened earlier today with {{context}} does anyone else think this discussion is somewhat ironic? — Carolina wren discussió 05:08, 6 April 2009 (UTC)


Not apparent to me that the given citations are anything other than "secret and/or sacred", which would be sum of parts and not plausibly idiomatic. But perhaps this does have a specific use in the Australian context? -- Visviva 18:23, 6 March 2009 (UTC)

Hyphenated form seems somewhat common: [7] This caught my eye in particular (from the Charlesworth book): "The term 'secret-sacred' is well known in the literature on Aboriginal Australia and is used to designate either men's or women's religious knowledge." Equinox 19:15, 6 March 2009 (UTC)
Strong delete (or better, rename) only one citation in the article, which doesn't seem to be anything put an abbreviated form of secret or sacred. Mglovesfun (talk) 19:18, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

online transaction processing

Based on a WP article. Not, IMO, a suitable dictionary headword. Equinox 00:19, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

Seems like a specific technical term to me. As such, keep. —Stephen 20:48, 15 March 2009 (UTC)
Really? Seems like rubbish to me, just an obvious term defined in business speak. Of course, it could be technical, but I'd like to know for sure. 03:08, 17 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete processing transactions online ("in real time" - we should have that def?). Used to distinguish it from the old method of processing transactions in batches. Conrad.Irwin 00:31, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete, as above. No real meaning in English. Mglovesfun 16:48, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
Deleted per all. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:12, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

tell a lie

Um...tell + a lie? Tell lies was already deleted, so why should this be kept? -- Frous 00:53, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

The RFD for tell a lie doesn't seem to be available (it's not on the talk page and didn't appear with a quick site-specific Google) but I dare say this is deletable for identical reasons. In the absence of those reasons, delete because it doesn't suggest anything beyond tell + a + lie. The person who's about to suggest that it might be something about William Tell and a sunken part of a golf course can eat a cancer. Equinox 00:59, 14 March 2009 (UTC)
Special:Whatlinkshere/tell lies leads one eventually to the previous RFD. It appears that at least one participant would have been more inclined to keep this entry than that one. -- Visviva 05:03, 14 March 2009 (UTC)
As the creator of the page, I added it because the antonym of tell a lie is tell the truth - this perhaps couldn't be assumed from just knowing the words tell, a, and lie. Hence Keep --Jackofclubs 09:19, 14 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete, per my argument at the previous rfd. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 09:55, 14 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete, per Atelaes. Although "tell lies" had a very small amount of merit worth discussing, "tell a lie" does not. -- ALGRIF talk 14:12, 14 March 2009 (UTC)
Keep. I don't think the differences between "he lied" and "he told a lie" are predictable from their literal meanings. —RuakhTALK 22:10, 14 March 2009 (UTC)
May I ask what that difference would be? The only distinction I'm picking up is the latter seems to imply a single incident, while the former could be a bit broader. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 05:37, 15 March 2009 (UTC)
I think there are at least two differences. One is that "to tell a lie" is usually more abstract — the instant you're lying to someone, it's just "to lie". Another is that "to tell a lie" is a bit more childish/child-directed; adults don't "tell a lie", they just "lie". —RuakhTALK 12:53, 15 March 2009 (UTC)
Not really. You can "tell (someone) a lie", and it's just as adult to "never tell a lie". Out of everything suggested here and in previous RFD, the only thing I see that's clearly worth keeping is tell stories which has a least one meaning distinct from tell a story. 02:44, 17 March 2009 (UTC)
Hmm....I must admit there is something to that. It's incredibly subtle, but it's there. However, I just don't know if it's specific to this construction. I admittedly can't think of a good example off the top of my head, but I wonder if these distinctions are in the grammar, and that there are parallels. I'm sorry, but it's just not convincing enough for me to change my vote. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 04:24, 17 March 2009 (UTC)
Redirect to I tell a lie for the aid of those who may look it up s.v. tell a lie (or delete). (Redirection summary should indicate RFD failure, "do not re-create".)msh210 17:07, 20 March 2009 (UTC)
Delete, as above. Mglovesfun 16:48, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
Upgrade to strong delete, hence closing discussion with a deletion. Mglovesfun (talk) 09:31, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

collective investment scheme

Seems like collective + investment scheme (which may also be SoP). Can anyone provide cites showing otherwise? DCDuring TALK 15:55, 15 March 2009 (UTC)

Or (collective + investment) + scheme, or some obvious mixture of the two. Delete. 01:52, 17 March 2009 (UTC)
Did you know that, per WP, investment funds, managed funds, mutual funds come under the head of "collective investment scheme"? I did not. I still do not know what exactly comes under the head, which is why I think the head is worth having a definition. Anyway, here comes a quotation that suggests a need for a definition, even if not the present definition:
    • 2003, Jonathan Fisher, Jane Bewsey, The Law of Investor Protection[8]:
      The definition of primary importance is of course the definition of "collective investment scheme" itself. That is to be found in s.235 of FSMA 2000.
Looking at Google books shows further occurrences of "collective investment scheme" that suggest that the phrase is a set one, with a meaning that can decide the result of a trial at a court.
Some of the Google books actually define the term.
In the quotation above, "FSMA 2000" refers to "The Financial Services and Markets Act 2000", a UK act. --Dan Polansky 19:10, 20 March 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep under the emerging inclusion of (or re-emphasis on) the "legal definition" criterion for inclusion as an idiom (Item 4 on our rendition of the Pawley list). See #ground beef, WT:BP#Legal definitions.. DCDuring TALK 18:18, 12 June 2009 (UTC)


All uses shown are blends, not stem+suffix. Perhaps another def.? DCDuring TALK 18:19, 16 March 2009 (UTC)

I can see that for Reaganomics, Clintonomics and Nixonomics; but Thatchernomics, Obamanomics, and Rogernomics seem more plausibly affix-like (though they are also plausible as blends). OED has this sense and an older one from -nomy with derivations like pyronomics. Color me neutral on the economics sense; it seems bogus, but on the other hand the morphology of these compounds is rather imponderable and this can be found in multiple reputable dictionaries (at least the OED and Webster's New International). -- Visviva 04:29, 18 March 2009 (UTC)
"Standardized" blends (you'll never see a blend of economics that goes -onomics unless the master word ends in -on or a similar syllable) tend to evolve toward a very strong suffixlike quality. Compare eco-, which one could argue actually evolved from blends with ecology, not the actual Greek root (I'm dubious about that purported French etymology... In any case, my Robert marks it as "extracted from écologie"). Circeus 05:13, 3 May 2009 (UTC)


Moved from RFV. DCDuring says "Five senses that seem to me included in two real senses." DAVilla 05:22, 20 March 2009 (UTC)

I agree that only the two uncontested senses are worth keeping, but would this mess up the translations? Perhaps the sociological and ecological ones are different words in some languages. Equinox 15:23, 20 March 2009 (UTC)
I would not worry about translations. The tagged senses have currently only two translations. If other languages need several words to cover a sense, they should simply be all listed, and explanations given in appropriate foreign-language entries. --Hekaheka 23:50, 22 March 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, you're quite right. Delete. Equinox 22:10, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
I'm okay with deleting these without prejudice. I don't doubt the definition could be more finely splintered, but I would want to see examples to make sure that the way it was divided was appropriate. 02:53, 24 March 2009 (UTC)

gone winchester

No citations are provided; the citations I found ('A fighter which has gone "Winchester" (ie, expended its air to air ordnance)' 2002: Brassey's Modern Fighters), ('By that time, Langston had gone "Winchester," naval aviator parlance for being out of ordnance' 2007: Inside the danger zone) imply the actual phrase is simply Winchester, and should be added to that page, instead. (really, User:JesseW/not logged in) 03:40, 21 March 2009 (UTC)


RfD of two senses:

  1. A motor car made (some time ago) by Ford in the United Kingdom.
    Keep, we have Honda, Ford, Toyota, Fiat, Mini, Mini Cooper, Jag, VW, Vauxhall, Chevy, even 98 Oldsmobile. There's plenty of others. --Dmol 01:42, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
    "Otherstuff" doesn't apply - we have a very specific CFI for brand names. bd2412 T 22:08, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
  2. A small town in India.

If we accept these, then præsumably we shall also have to accept many of the other senses catalogued by Wikipedia.  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 00:57, 23 March 2009 (UTC)

Move to RfV. DCDuring TALK 01:57, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
Agreed, RfV. bd2412 T 22:08, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
RFV the first and delete the second along with any other "small town" definitions that aren't significant for reasons of etymology. 00:55, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
Moved to RFV. Equinox 00:41, 22 June 2009 (UTC)


Sense 1: "The first four letter on the home row on a QWERTY keyboard, and the start letters for a one's left hand when doing touch typing." This is not a dictionary definition of asdf as a word. It is a mention, not a use, just as the scale CDEFGAB — while familiar to musicians — is not a dictionary word. Contrast qwerty, which is actually used as a word to denote a style of keyboard. Equinox 22:03, 23 March 2009 (UTC)

I can find a (very) few attributive uses such as “resting on the ASDF row of the keyboard”,[9] but I think it passes CFI. Michael Z. 2009-03-24 17:16 z
Isn't "resting on the ASDF row" rather like "filed under the Flowers category"? Again, a mention rather than a use. Equinox 22:19, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
Not unless you have a very unconventional keyboard. The flowers category contains all of the flowers and none of the non-flowers. So that could be an analogy for “resting on the asdfghjkl;, row.” Michael Z. 2009-03-24 23:05 z
No, the Flowers category might not contain every possible flower. It merely contains at least some of them. Likewise, we could probably talk about the "Q side of the keyboard" (only one Google match, admittedly, but perhaps someone can come up with an equivalent but better example); it doesn't mean that the entire side consists of one huge Q key. Equinox 23:10, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
I can't follow your analogy, unless you mean that the flowers category includes flowers and giraffes and flathead screws, just as the asdf category includes a's, s's, d's, f's, and also g's, h's, j's etc.
asdf is an attributive adjective derived from a representative subset of the contents of the referent, just like qwerty; asdf row is like qwerty keyboard. Three cites meets CFI, and we've only counted ones with the phrase asdf rowMichael Z. 2009-03-24 23:49 z
RFV looking for cites like this, use not mention. DAVilla 08:59, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
Quick cites for consideration:
  1. “Keep shoulders relaxed, upper arms by the side of the trunk, and forearms level with the ASDF row of the keyboard.” (1 occurrence on p 509).
  2. “The height of the desk or table should be such as to allow the forearm to be horizontal when the fingers are resting on the guide keys - the asdf row of the keyboard.” (1 occurrence on p 139).
  3. “Wrists should be straight when fingers are resting on the ASDF row of the keyboard.”[10]
  4. “In contrast to QWERTY, the most frequently used letters – AOEU – are placed in the QWERTY ASDF home row where typists most often go to rest their hands.”[11]
In the last one, “QWERTY ASDF home row” is actually referring to the position of letters on a Dvorak layout – so ASDF is a name for the physical row, with reference to the conventional type of keyboard, where the actual corresponding letters are AOEU (followed by IDHTNS_).
Admittedly, the use of this as a name is rare, it's very common to see “place the fingers of your left hand on the a s d f keys,”[12] or “Introducing the Home Row with ‘ASDF’.”[13] Michael Z. 2009-03-26 18:11 z
All of these citations are for ASDF row. DAVilla 02:30, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Sum-of-parts in each, I think, since the attributive occurs with either row of the keyboard or home row. Even if it weren't, the meaning of row would be self-evident from the context of typewriting tutorial. So perhaps we add a restrictive label typewritingMichael Z. 2009-04-08 02:43 z
Found a different one, but only one occurrence: “There are some software available in the market which teach you how to master the keyboard, but the old asdf method of typing would be sufficient.”[14] CFI doesn't say the author has to write well... Michael Z. 2009-04-08 02:59 z
ASDF keys, ASDF row, ASDF method looks like it's good enough to pass attestation. I'm not sure if it has to be considered idiomatic in each case. I'd guess some of the people here would say yes. A solid quotation for "ASDF keys" may be different enough from "CTRL keys" to make a case, and the Dvorak quotation abstract enough to require some prior knowledge. But this is right on the line. 01:16, 9 April 2009 (UTC)

certificat de travail

not idiomatic. DCDuring TALK 20:15, 26 March 2009 (UTC)

  • It's not a ‘work certificate’. It's proof that you're in a job. Ƿidsiþ 20:22, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep but change the definition: this is a set phrase but, in its commonest sense, you get this certificate when you leave your job. Another, very different, sense is about candidates to immigration: this certificate proves that they have found a job, and they will be able to work once in their new country. I think that the proof that you're in a job is called an attestation de travail. Lmaltier 22:20, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
Sounds like the British P45 perhaps. Equinox 22:27, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
That was my first thought. If it's a set name for the document then it should stay with a correct definition. I don't speak French so I won't vote either way.--Dmol 23:05, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
We certainly have entries like [[1040]] and [[W-2]]. Is it a legal/administrative term? Is there an appropriate wikipedia entry? DCDuring TALK 23:30, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
legal/administrative term? Yes (in France). See the Licenciement article (French Wikipedia). Lmaltier 08:02, 27 March 2009 (UTC)
Keep, not just the sum of its parts. It has a cultural meaning. Mglovesfun 23:38, 27 March 2009 (UTC)
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This is a French definition of the document in question:

Selon le code du travail, lorsqu’un salarié quitte une entreprise, son employeur doit lui fournir un certificat de travail. Celui-ci doit mentionner le nom de l’employeur, la date à laquelle le certificat a été fait, les nom et prénom du salarié, les dates auxquelles il a travaillé dans l’entreprise, la nature de l’emploi occupé.
It is not exactly the same as P45, as it contains no salary inormation. It merely states that the person has been employed by someone between the given dates and the kind of work done. I don't know what this kind of certificate is called in English. --Hekaheka 18:17, 12 July 2009 (UTC)


Does the acronymic sense belong on this page, or is it "LULU"? Either way, the formatting and capitalisation are unnecessary. If it does not belong here, then the terms in the "see also" section need to be moved out too. — Paul G 10:28, 31 March 2009 (UTC)

This term long predates the common use of acronyms, so the above must be in error. Or perhaps what was meant is that there is also an acronym "LULU", but this is not mentioned in the article. Surely this is a useful article, but I was hoping to find the origen(sp) of the term. David R. Ingham 06:47, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

April 2009


Just because one guy writes a word backwards doesn’t make it suitable to be in a dictionary. H. (talk) 21:05, 5 April 2009 (UTC)

Delete: a nonce word, and not in any hugely significant work. Equinox 21:06, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
The quotation provided from Google Books seems reasonable to me, and it’s an interesting usage. —Stephen 12:20, 7 April 2009 (UTC)
RFV. DAVilla 00:58, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

extenuating circumstances

Was a poorly formed IP addition. Was tempted to simply delete as SoP, but thought I'd bring it here for discussion instead to see if people think it is a specific enough legal term to warrant keeping as it is being linked to. — Carolina wren discussió 01:58, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Keep, commonly used law term, as far as I know. If it doesn't warrant its own entry, an appendix of words related to law should include it. — [ ric ] opiaterein — 12:32, 7 April 2009 (UTC)
Is it listed in legal dictionaries? Then it passes the lemming test. DAVilla 01:07, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Yes, in 3 OneLook "legal dictionaries". DCDuring TALK 22:49, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep, however I don't think you can have just one extenuating circumstance, but I'd have said I hear this phrase quite often in a legal/political context. Mglovesfun 22:10, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
I've just pressed preview and it's coming up in blue. Crap. Mglovesfun 22:10, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Is the death of a family member an extenuating circumstance? —Stephen 22:25, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Kept.RuakhTALK 13:46, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

his nibs

Shouldn't this just be at nibs with usage examples or redirects for "his/her/my/your/their((/our?) nibs"? DCDuring TALK 02:40, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

Well it is an awkward way to refer to someone, kinda like Your Majesty. It should probably be redirected, to nibs or where else I'm not certain. DAVilla 03:00, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep as a set phrase. It's quite common in speech, but as it's informal it might be hard to cite in print. I don't think I have ever heard anything other than his, and would challenge her/my/your/their etc.--Dmol 04:41, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
This is not RfV. It is easy enough to cite, just as one could cite "his holiness" or "his car". One could also cite "her nibs", "my nibs", "your nibs", and "their nibs" (but probably not "our nibs"}. All might warrant a redirect to nibs, which has the appropriate sense. I don't think an entry at [[one's nibs]] has much value. DCDuring TALK 09:59, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
There's a world of difference between "his holiness" and "his car". You don't talk to your car, much less address it with a proper title. I'm sure Dmol means he's never heard anything other than "his nibs" as a form of address. 00:46, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
That's exactly what I meant. I have never heard "her nibs", "my nibs", "your nibs", and "their nibs" or "our nibs". But "his nibs" is common, and means exactly what it says in the definition.--Dmol 11:02, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
That you haven't heard of them is a useful datapoint. Perhaps "nibs" is no longer productive, like "word" in my word.
But my preliminary research seemed to show "her nibs" to be almost as common as his nibs. The other forms also would probably be attestable, if not common. Dictionaries don't seem to choose to waste their users' time (clicks) showing any of such phrases as "Your Majesty", "His Majesty", "Her Majesty", "Their Majesty", "Our Majesty", "My Majesty" and some attestable plurals and capitalisations thereof, instead drawing the user to "majesty". The analog seems possible here as well. DCDuring TALK 15:34, 9 April 2009 (UTC)


This seems to fall foul of the Fictional universes exclusion to me, as does treknology below. Delete and maybe add to a new Appendix:Star Trek. — Carolina wren discussió 18:03, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

No, it doesn't. The word is never used in that fictional universe. Think of it this way: the character Mr. Spock would never use the word "treknobabble". --EncycloPetey 19:32, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
Careful. That's not true. The citations must be (I quote) "independent of reference to that universe" — not merely spoken by non-characters of the universe. Equinox 22:06, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
I think that EncycloPetey is right, and that you're misunderstanding his argument. The relevant sentence is this one:
Terms A→originating in fictional universes←A which have three citations in separate works, but B→which do not have three citations which are independent of reference to that universe←B may be included only in appendices of words from that universe, and not in the main dictionary space. [emphasis removed]
EP is saying that (non-finite) clause A doesn't describe treknobabble (since it doesn't originate in the Star Trek universe, but rather is an external reference to Star Trek itself), such that that entire section of the CFI doesn't apply. You are saying that clause B does, or may, describe treknobabble. But since clause A doesn't, clause B is irrelevant. Do you see what I mean?
RuakhTALK 14:59, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Yes, that explains my argument in a more detailed way. We had a similar discussion over X-Phile, which is another term pertaining to a particular TV program, but not originating within that fictional universe. You can see Robert's opinion in the matter at Talk:X-Phile. --EncycloPetey 17:51, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep per EncycloPetey. Exactly correct analysis. We're not talking about a tricorder or a lightsaber here. bd2412 T 17:30, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
  • Move to RFV and keep if cited as normal. Ƿidsiþ 18:02, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
    • For the record, it's now cited (so far as the usual CFI requires). bd2412 T 19:58, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Kept. Also, preëmptively RFV-passed. (Thanks for the cites, BD2412!) —RuakhTALK 13:54, 26 July 2009 (UTC)


This seems to fall foul of the Fictional universes exclusion to me, as does treknobabble above. Delete and maybe add to a new Appendix:Star Trek. — Carolina wren discussió 18:03, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

No, it doesn't. The word is never used in that fictional universe. Think of it this way: the character Mr. Spock would never use the word "treknology". --EncycloPetey 19:32, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
I don't think that's the rule. See my comment at treknobabble above. Equinox 22:07, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
I've done a fairly deep search, and I doubt this would muster enough cites to pass the CFI anyway. bd2412 T 19:59, 21 April 2009 (UTC)


English + language in hyphenated adjective form DAVilla 05:17, 12 April 2009 (UTC)

In case it matters, the current definition is inadequate. There are distinct senses:
  1. Written or spoken in English. (E.g., English-language literature, English-language websites)
  2. Communicating in English (speaking, reading, writing, conversing, etc). (English-language speakers, English-language readers, English-language writers, English-language publishing houses of Germany which conduct business in German and write about architecture)
  3. Of or relating to the English language. (English-language study, English-language policy in France, Diccionario de Ingles, English-language skills)
There may be more. I'm not sure if the last one actually defines the sense in English-language learnersMichael Z. 2009-04-13 22:13 z
Delete SoP.—msh210 23:10, 20 April 2009 (UTC)


English + speaking in hyphenated adjective form DAVilla 05:17, 12 April 2009 (UTC)

Hm. Means “able to speak English well”, which might account for the English-speaking world, but does not mean “speaking English (at this moment).” The entry speaking doesn't help, but a reader might guess that speak (5) applies. Me, I'd certainly define it in a dictionary for ESL learners. Michael Z. 2009-04-13 23:56 z
I don't know if that argument holds water. If I say I'm a writer, that doesn't mean I'm necessarily writing at this moment. In most contexts it probably means that I write for a living, but in general it means that I sometimes write, and that somehow that writing is important to who I am. Similarly, just because English-speaking doesn't mean speaking English at this second, I fail to see how that makes idiomatic. I think that English-speaking could use any of the five senses at speak. Additionally, I find it kind of funny that we have a picture of the creepiest guy to ever exist at that entry. Delete -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 00:29, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
I see a qualitative difference. Writer and speaker are people with particular vocations, or in particular roles (say, writer of a movie, or speaker at a conference). English-speaker is a person with an ability. Writing and speaking are present participles, used to point to someone who is writing or speaking at the moment. English-speaking is an adjective, used to attribute the facility of speaking English to someone.
(Besides that, its meaning is not defined by any sense found at speaking, so “English + speaking” doesn't define it for a reader using our dictionary. I don't think we should delete something as sum-of-parts, until our dictionary supports that assertion in the most practical sense.) Michael Z. 2009-04-14 04:40 z
Delete as SOP. I'm not sure if the parts are "English" and "speaking" or "English" and "-speaking", or what, but it's obviously SOP, since "<language>-speaking" works equally well, and has the same meaning, for any spoken language (and even "ASL-speaking" gets some b.g.c. hits). —RuakhTALK 02:52, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep An interesting one. While it appears to be SoP, Michael makes an undeniable point. Until there is an adequate definition at speaking, SoP cannot be called. And I think it would be almost impossible to make a case for the definition required without calling for the structure "<language>-speaking" to support it. I see this entry in other dictionaries, so why not here too? After all, an English-speaking Frenchman does not mean that he is spouting forth in English at all times, nor at this very moment. Whereas an accordion-playing Frenchman would actually mean that he is playing at all times, or at this very moment. -- ALGRIF talk 14:24, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
I looked at w:Participle#Participles_in_Modern_English for guidance, but that article doesn't list all of the functions of the present participle, apart from “modifying a noun, with active sense: Let sleeping dogs lie.”. But I guess attributing an ability is one of them, as in dancing bear, flying monkey, etc.
If the correct sense were added to speaking or -speaking, then this entry wouldn't be SoP, but I still wouldn't feel compelled to delete it. By the way, should these be participles or adjectives? Michael Z. 2009-04-15 14:48 z
For English entries, we don't use the POS header "Participle". We use "Adjective" for participles that function like adjectives, and we use "Verb" for the verb form definition. English partiicples do not inflect, have no number or person, and (as can be seen above) the present participle doesn't even imply current action. In short, English participles don't have the features that make participles interesting in other languages, so there is no reason to label them as a separate part of speech. For other languages, practice varies. --EncycloPetey 19:29, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
No, accordion-playing Frenchman can mean either a Frenchman playing an accordion at the moment, or a Frenchman who knows how to play an accordion. DAVilla 08:42, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete SoP.—msh210 23:12, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep. References an ability, not a characteristic. bd2412 T 20:03, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

I added a sense and subsense to speakingMichael Z. 2009-04-21 20:55 z

I agree with your entry, and I have even blue-linked -speaking. But I still think that English-speaking should be kept. Translations at -speaking are difficult. In Spanish, for instance, I can't put anglófono nor anglohablante although I wonder if -hablante would be allowable. I'm sure there are similar problems in most other languages also. -- ALGRIF talk 13:14, 25 April 2009 (UTC)

business English

business + English DAVilla 05:25, 12 April 2009 (UTC)

The term business is finely broken down into 16 senses, and I bet some but not others are used in this compound.
Is business English the subset of English that is used in business, a specialized business jargon or dialect, the register of English speech and writing appropriate for business, or a field in foreign-language education (the latter is implied in w:Business English)? Is use of the term restricted to the field of language education? Michael Z. 2009-04-13 22:32 z
Delete on the grounds you have have Business German, Japanese, Chinese whatever. Is someone suggested that we get a bot to create one of these for each language? Mglovesfun 16:39, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
Gone, not idiomatic. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:01, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

en space

The entry title is the thing “[[ ]]”, not the term en space denoting it. Recently discussed at WT:RFV# , and currently redirected to en space.

en space is a term denoting a thing, while an en space (“ ”) is an instance of the thing, and not a term or even a symbol representing the thing. It is a tool of the typographer, and not something that appears in print, so it is not attestable per WT:CFI (i.e., the blank created by an en space is not distinguishable from a regular double space in print, whether it was set in letterpress, phototypeset, or set digitally). While keeping it as a redirect isn't a major problem or anything, it ignores the distinction of what belongs in a dictionary and what doesn't. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 18:14 z

This width of space frequently occurs after cola and semi-cola in archaic texts, so in that sense we can show its being used. What’s the problem?  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 18:28, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
This is exactly why we shouldn't try to add non-words to the dictionary. You can't attest the word en space in a 1,500-year-old manuscript any more than you can attest the word dinosaur to 230 million BC. An en space is a metal object used by a letterpress compositor, or its digital analogue; it is not a gap between words on a page. We must keep a firm grip on what is a thing and what is its name, or the dictionary will plotz. Delete! Michael Z. 2009-04-14 20:06 z
The problem is in including both things and their names in something devoted to names. It's seems just an empty mind-game of little or no utility. DCDuring TALK 18:37, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
Are you trying to maintain the principle (with which I think I agree) or do you really want to delete it? I haven't entirely gotten my head around including both the various non-letter symbols we include and their names. After all we don't include pictures of bricks, bricks themselves, or "bricks"; we just include [[bricks]]. DCDuring TALK 18:37, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
My take is that our entries describe lexical units. Most of those lexical units are words like "bricks", but some are typographical elements, like the letter B whose entry is [[B]] and the en space, whose entry should be [[[[ ]]]]. Our entry [[en space]], on the other hand, is for a word commonly used to refer to that typographical element. —Rod (A. Smith) 19:44, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
At the end of the day, [[[[ ]]]] is not used to signify any thing, unlike most of the other typographic elements. Any standard road sign would have more basis for inclusion as a signifier. Typographic elements, like wikijargon, are a kind of inside baseball that has no value to our user base, the supposed beneifciaries of our efforts, but seems of importance to us. DCDuring TALK 19:59, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
The en space is used to indicate something. Each instance of it indicates that the preceding word has ended, that the subsequent letters start a new word, and that the visual space between those words should be a specific width. Typographical units are valid dictionary entries, distinct from the words that refer to them. B (the letter bee) is distinct from the word “bee”. 1 (one) is distinct from the word “one”. The Korean letter (giyeok) is distinct from the word 기역 (giyeok). We document lexical units, including words bee, one, 기역 (giyeok), and en space and the typographical units they name, with entries at [[B]], [[1]], [[]], and [[[[ ]]]]. —Rod (A. Smith) 20:46, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
Lots of things indicate something. The radiation symbol, the sign of the cross, the phrase “let's try to get to the beach before Marty,” a strip of yellow police tape, an Apple logo, a woodsman's blaze hacked into a tree, a frown, a turnstile, a cupholder. None of these belongs in a dictionary.
But an en space isn't even a symbol. An en space is a metal object which is strapped into a letterpress, or an analogous 8-bit character in a text bytestream. The gap between words is just a gap between words, and a reader without a pair of calipers doesn't distinguish the gap left by three thin spaces, an en space, a quad, a tab character, two mid spaces, or the right-alignment of a very long line.
The encyclopedia explains the function of “typographical units.” The dictionary defines words (or “lexical units”, if you like). Michael Z. 2009-04-14 21:03 z
Yes, but how many of those things are Unicode codepoints? –I’d be fine with entries for Lua error in Module:links/templates at line 53: The script code "unicode" is not valid. and Lua error in Module:links/templates at line 53: The script code "unicode" is not valid. (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 22:13, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
The Unicode consortium is maintaining a spec describing their encoding scheme. All words in all languages is a very different thing. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 23:33 z
Dictionaries document lexical units, of which words are only one class (the largest class, sure, but just one class). Every decent English dictionary contains an entry for the letter B. Typographical characters are a type of lexical unit whose documentation belongs in a dictionary. —Rod (A. Smith) 21:15, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I notice that our entry for lexical item and Wikipedia's entry w:Lexical item disagree with my use of that phrase. I meant something like, "units of language", but now I'm hard-pressed to find a phrase that means just that. Rephrasing my point above, I believe dictionaries document units of language, of which words are only one class. A decent English dictionary contains an entry for the letter B, with facts like the origin of the letter, its position in the alphabet, its pronunciation, etc. Similarly, a dictionary seems like a great home for documentation of typographical units, like [[1]], [[]], and [[[[ ]]]]. —Rod (A. Smith) 21:51, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
Which dictionary, decent or otherwise, has an entry for an actual en space, and not just its name, en space? Does it have two entries for italic B and roman B? Headwords or subsenses for serif and sans-serif B's, blackletter B's, and B's set in a Swiss humanist face? I think your dictionary probably just has entries for B, and b. Periods, commas, semicolons, dashes, etc belong to orthography, not lexicography. These are all part of writing, but they are not “lexical units.” A space is not a word, it is the empty spot between written words.
But be that as it may, you are still confounding text with the technical means used to represent it. An en space is not a “typographical character”, and it is not a gap between written characters. An en space is a concrete object, a kind of metal slug, which can make a bigger gap between other types by being bent or padded with a bit of chewed paper.[15] An en space is also a Unicode character with the value U+2002, which can produce an en-width gap in displayed or printed text, but, for example, can also make a bigger gap if the text is set justified left and right. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 22:25 z
So an en space is not a “typographical character”, but it is also a Unicode character with the value U+2002? Now I'm even more confounded. —Rod (A. Smith) 22:52, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
That's right. It's a digital character, a byte, a code point – it's not a typographical character, letter, or symbol, or a glyph at all. It's a typographer's tool, not a part of the lexis. It defines a range of behaviours for the adjacent characters, which behaviours may be modified by software which lays out or displays text on a screen or printer, but doesn't display anything or have inherent meaning. It's a block in the press or a piece of data in the computer file, but it only leaves a blank on the screen or on paper. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 23:03 z
A dictionary defines words. No matter how loosely you want to define what constitutes words, spaces will continue to be the empty bits between them. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 23:08 z

Forgive my obtuseness, but I don’t see the difference between Lua error in Module:links/templates at line 53: The script code "unicode" is not valid. and Lua error in Module:links/templates at line 53: The script code "unicode" is not valid., Lua error in Module:links/templates at line 53: The script code "unicode" is not valid., and Lua error in Module:links/templates at line 53: The script code "unicode" is not valid., apart from the fact that the former lacks black bits; what’s the significant difference in lexicographical terms?  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 22:03, 14 April 2009 (UTC)

Unlike bricks or dinosaurs, we are dealing here with something which can be sought for via our search box as a single Unicode graphic character. I don't see it as being outside the remit of an electronically-based dictionary to deal with such things, even if a paper-based dictionary would be unlikely to do so. The question therefore is whether Unicode graphic characters meet the standard of “Terms” to be broadly interpreted. A loose interpretation of the sixth bullet point: "Characters used in ideographic or phonetic writing such as 字 or ʃ." would favor allowing an entry for every Unicode graphic character.
DC is arguing in favor of a strict standard under which characters that exist solely as typographic tools would not meet CFI's standard of a “term”. If “[[ ]]” and “[[ ]]” were deleted, logical consistency would seem to call for also deleting “²” and “³” since those too are simply tools of the typographer to produce superscript 2 and superscript 3 respectively, and likely quite a few other existing entries would need to be deleted under that strict standard.
I see no reason to discriminate against non-printing graphic characters, and no reason to not have suitable entries for each and every one of them. Getting those suitable entries is likely to be the problem, though for some them, such as “”, a redirect should suffice. — Carolina wren discussió 22:20, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
You're using a pretty loose interpretation of loose interpretation. If it meant any Unicode character, it would say any Unicode character, and then we would have to change it so that this remained a dictionary. Fortunately, none of these things is true. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 22:29 z
I didn't say any Unicode character, I said any Unicode graphic character. There is a difference and I agree that combining characters such as U+0305 COMBINING OVERLINE or format characters such as U+200C ZERO WIDTH NON-JOINER don't merit entries. — Carolina wren discussió 22:46, 14 April 2009 (UTC)
Let me try again, less glibly. Don't treat our representation of language as language itself. Unicode doesn't define language or lexis, it's merely an attempt to represent it. Let's delineate our dictionary's scope in terms of language, not code points. Michael Z. 2009-04-14 22:51 z
And yet those code points are how the Wiktionary is accessed, not simply letters as is the case for paper dictionaries. To a certain extent, function must follow form.
Let me make certain that I understand you and the full scope of your point of view on what should be included and excluded as a “term”. In addition to “[[ ]]”, you would favor eliminating everything that does not fit a highly restrictive definition of lexical, such as, but not limited to -, ², ·, , , , and most of Appendix:Unsupported titles (including of course the entry on “ ”). If not, please explain why you feel any of those merit being included as terms while “[[ ]]” does not, for what you have propounded so far does not support making such a distinction. (In my opinion, that spaces don't have black bits does not of itself constitute a reason to exclude them.) — Carolina wren discussió 00:55, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
The design adage is actually “form follows function” rather than the reverse. The function of this dictionary is to define terms, not to duplicate the Unicode Consortium's specification.
But this is off topic. If you have a specific proposal to change CFI, then write it up at the Beer Parlour and maybe you can learn more about my full scope. For now I'll just say that “characters used in ideographic or phonetic writing such as 字 or ʃ” certainly does not declare or imply that “ ” is a term in any language. Michael Z. 2009-04-15 19:03 z
I'm aware of the way the adage is usually structured, but the converse was appropriate to my point. I don't see the need to rewrite CFI to include “ ” within the scope of what we cover except possibly for added clarity. The list given of what constitutes a term in not written in manner that indicates exclusivity. To quote the relevant section: “A term need not be limited to a single word in the usual sense. Any of these are also acceptable:”. If that list were prescriptive instead of illustrative, the language should instead be something like: “A term is not limited to a single word in the usual sense. The following and only the following are also acceptable:”
Now let me repeat my question, MZ, and this time I'd appreciate an actual answer instead of blithely declaring it off topic. You are arguing that “[[ ]]” should be deleted because it does not meet what you consider to be the scope of “term”. I do not agree that it does not meet the scope of “term”, and have explained why I feel is does. If “[[ ]]” (and “[[ ]]”) are deleted, your interpretation of what is a “term” is likely to govern future discussions and therefore knowing clearly what that interpretation is on topic. Therefore let me repeat for hopefully the last time: Do you favor eliminating everything that does not fit a highly restrictive definition of lexical, such as, but not limited to -, ², ·, , , , and most of Appendix:Unsupported titles (including of course the entry on “ ”)? If not, please explain why you feel any of those merit being included as terms while “[[ ]]” does not.Carolina wren discussió 19:06, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but each case has its own merits, or hasn't. I won't satisfy your demand for me to write an essay to “govern future discussions.”
This is not a term in any sense, not even a written character, except purely in the jargon of digital representation. Spaces are the bits between terms and their components. It's also not attestable. The half-em gap left between terms by this code point could have been created by a half-dozen other means. This doesn't meet our CFI. Michael Z. 2009-04-17 22:32 z
Not much sense in hashing this further, since it is clear we disagree on the termitude of “[[ ]]” and that we won't resolve our difference of opinion here. White space can be shown to affect meaning as doggone and dog gone aren't even remotely related in meaning. (Indeed, a dog gone would elicit a Yippie! from me.) Given a refusal to discuss the broader issue, I will have to take the position that this deletion, if it goes through, sets no precedent except for other white space characters. — Carolina wren discussió 01:20, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Delete; not verifiable. We don't index orthogrpahic variants where the spelling does not change. This is akin to discussing cat versus cɑt. --EncycloPetey 19:26, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
While the example is problematic, since cɑt could be a distinct word from cat in Fe'fe' or some other African language that uses Latin alpha (Ɑ ɑ) as a letter, it certainly is a more cogent argument than the one given by MZ. While I still think that we ought to have entries or redirects (to either another entry or an Appendix) for each Unicode graphic character, if only to avoid the inevitable attempts at (re)creation by anons, until such time as a systematic effort to make such entries is undertaken, I won't be insistent on keeping this, tho I still don't support deletion. — Carolina wren discussió 22:14, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
It's a good example, even if italics are used in Fe'fe' leetspeak. Many fonts have a unicameral italic small a, that does not make it a small Latin alpha, any more than a zero is a capital o, or a capital el a small i.
Perhaps redirects to an appendix would serve to prevent recreating such entries. Or a redirect with explanation, as at WiktionarianMichael Z. 2009-04-18 14:28 z
What italics? There is some use of Latin alpha outside of IPA as a distinct letter from Latin a, which is why Latin Capital Letter Alpha (U+2C6D) was added in Unicode 5.1. One can argue the wisdom of making that distinction, but it isn't dissimilar in nature to separating u and v or i and j. — Carolina wren discussió 02:09, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
Based on EP's point ("We don't index orthogrpahic variants where the spelling does not change."), I'd be satisfied with a simple Mediawiki redirect to whatever entry we have for whitespace. —Rod (A. Smith) 22:40, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
Strong keep for both this and em space. We have entries for Translingual graphical symbols (e.g. "," and "-") and entries for their names in (hopefully) all languages (en:comma & hyphen, es:coma & guión, etc.). “[[ ]]” should be treated no differently. We should not have a Translingual symbol be a redirect to an English term. And the entry should have its Unicode codepoint. In the context of symbols, this information is not encyclopedic. It is necessary information that clarifies easily confused and hard to decipher symbols. Perhaps if we could separate names for things (that should go in dictionaries) from the actual text we use, then we wouldn't need to have this entry. But we can't, so we should.
EP, perhaps a better example of your point would have been bedroom & BEDROOM. But while true for whole words, we make obvious exceptions for single character entries (e.g. G & g and Γ, γ). --Bequw¢τ 09:14, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Those aren't exceptions. The letters G and g serve different lexical functions and have separate etymologies. The capital and lower case were developed at different times and in different cultures. --EncycloPetey 17:47, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps a good position is that we ought to have an entry for [[ |« »]], but not for something like en space (written with the en space, resulting perhaps from paragraph justification) as an alternative for en space (written with an ASCII space); just a thought…  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 18:25, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Keep per Bequw. EncycloPetey's analogy is apt, and we shouldn't have entries for things like cɑt and hot dog; but we should have entries for things like ɑ and [[ |the en space]]. (And in fact, we already do have an entry for ɑ.) —RuakhTALK 15:08, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Yes, we have an entry for ɑ as an IPA character, but that is irrelevant. We do not have entries for cɑt or ɑpple, or other English words using that character in the spelling, despite the fact that some publishers use that typography. Likewise, we dont have separate entries for the two forms of lowercase g that can appear in different font sets. --EncycloPetey 17:47, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
But we should have entries for the two forms of the lower-case g, in my opinion.  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 18:25, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
This is a purely stylistic difference, and carries no lexicographical meaning. The (near-)exception is in IPA, which prefers an “open-tailed g”, presumably for consistency, but allows a bicameral g – Unicode provides a code point for this, U+0261 (ɡ). In my opinion, this is a preferred style, like asking for a sans-serif font, and the letter remains a g. Michael Z. 2009-04-19 01:08 z
Whatever difference or lack thereof there is between ‘g’ and ‘ɡ’, we’d still have separate entries for both, wouldn’t we? The difference is that we would not have separate entries for, say, gold and ɡold (though the latter might be kept as a hard redirect to the former).  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 17:29, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
I would say keep only if we are to distinguish glyphs like italic and serif variants. In fact, I would very much like to see this. A vertical line is a single glyph but can mean lowercase L or uppercase I, except that in writing an word-initial I usually has the bars on top and bottom. The line can also mean the number 1 in the US but the British write that differently. The Arabic numeral 5 when written by the Chinese always has the left stem extending noticeably above the horizontal bar. This is true despite looking the same in type as we would see it, just as in the U.S. the dollar sign is written with two vertical strokes although the typed symbol commonly has only one, sometimes going through and sometimes not. It is proper for dictionaries to document this kind of information. However, seeing as we do not yet, delete. DAVilla 08:34, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
And in countries which use the Cyrillic alphabet, a figure 4 is always closed, so it doesn't look like a letter Ч (che). Where a figure 1 starts with a prominent upstroke, the figure 7 is distinguished by a crossed stem.
But these typographic or calligraphic variations of letterform don't belong in a dictionary, nor do Roman or Cyrillic type styles like serif, italic, or boldfaced. They don't represent differences in spelling or even orthography, nor in pronunciation, nor any other lexicographical feature. They might be summarized in an encyclopedic appendix, but we have the biggest appendix in the world, the English-language Wikipedia. Michael Z. 2009-05-18 16:39 z
Sure they belong here. It is for precisely these reasons of division in linguistic evolution that we don't have just one Roman alphabet or one Cyrillic alphabet, these inventions often reflecting phonetic deviation, and why words borrowed from similar languages take on very different pronunciations (or similar pronunciations and different spellings), and why letters have come to represent multiple phonetics over time. It may feel like documenting this is a static snapshot, but it is an entirely linguistic topic and subject to change as with any other, just over a larger span of time. DAVilla 04:08, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
Huh? So there should be separate entries for the different “terms” italic, italic, and italic (and italic?). Separate entries for style, style, and style? One for closed figure 4 and another for open-topped 4? Not only is this impossible to do in Wikimedia, but there is no dictionary precedent for any such thing. This is not lexicography. Michael Z. 2009-05-26 04:28 z
No, only for glyphs, some day in a separate namespace possibly but starting in the appendix, just as usage notes for the different alphabets and such. Once you know that a glyph stands for a 1 or an I or an l, then it can take on the lexical meaning, and the different "terms" you name above would all be under the same title, italic or style, and not also in small caps or with an initial capital as at the beginning of a sentence or other obvious variants.
And am I mistaken? I thought the unabridged dictionaries did catalog the evolution of letterforms. I've seen a few places where we do already. DAVilla 05:10, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
I see, but this is part of the encyclopedic supplement, I think. We can already link to this kind of info at w:A, w:Latin alphabet, w:1 (number), w:Hindu-Arabic numeral system, w:Italic type, etc. Michael Z. 2009-05-26 12:34 z
Oh, and a redirect makes no more sense than redirecting “0” to “zero” or listing “exclamation mark” in see alsos at the top of “!”. A “[[ ]]” is not just English! DAVilla 12:07, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

advance fee scam

SOP? —RuakhTALK 01:54, 15 April 2009 (UTC)

Keep, wide-spread long-term use as a set phrase. I think it is the standard term used by legislators in the USA, and perhaps elsewhere.--Dmol 07:58, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
The more standard term seems to be "advance fee fraud". —RuakhTALK 15:35, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
advance fee fraud is under "See Also" and it's a red-link for now. -- 17:29, 15 April 2009 (UTC)

em space

Similar to the #en space above, there's a redirect from the whitespace character “[[ ]]” to the entry em space. Per CFI, this is not a term. Michael Z. 2009-04-15 19:07 z

As I noted above, the list of what is a term given in CFI is written in an illustrative fashion, not a prescriptive one.— Carolina wren discussió 19:18, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
As I noted, none of these examples illustrates anything like the gap created by U+2003 EM SPACE. Its lexicographical vacancy is identical to that of the gap left by U+2001, or a pair of U+2002's or U+2005's in a row, or a metal quad in the letterpress, or a tap of the space bar in a mechanical typewriter. It is not a term, it makes the voids between them. Michael Z. 2009-04-17 22:41 z


If we're going to discuss deleting “[[ ]]” and “[[ ]]”, then we should also discuss the entry for “ ” in Appendix:Unsupported titles. Nothing that would apply to the first two entries does not also apply to that entry. Personally I feel all three should be kept for the reasons I have given at #en space above. — Carolina wren discussió 19:18, 16 April 2009 (UTC)

Although we have had the entries in Appendix:Unsupported titles, and linked from Template:punctuation, these don't meet our own CFI. They're not terms, abbreviations, acronyms, or initialisms, etc. We end up with “definitions” which are actually usage, descriptions, or just names: “An ASCII symbol which covers the functions of...,” “a glottal stop”, and “The right parenthesis symbol.
Maybe they're better off collected in a single, well constructed appendix. A table or list may be more effective than the current long page of redundant “Translingual” headings pretending to be dictionary definitions. Michael Z. 2009-04-18 15:04 z
Hm, just thinking aloud — well, on screen — about the appendix idea. You think it should list all characters that don't otherwise have entries... which should probably be all Unicode characters (since why do we need to define even A#Translingual?)... and it should define them as "symbol representing a glottal stop" or "the right parenthesis symbol" or the like. So basically we should have a copy of the Unicode table, but augmented by etymology (how did the parenthesis get its form, and when?), related terms ([ is related to (), and the like. Is that what you had in mind?—msh210 15:52, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
No, the Unicode consortium already documents each version of their standard. I wish people would stop implying that Unicode had some authority or precedence over language. But we can supplement the dictionary with some encyclopedic lists of symbols, the kind of stuff you used to find in tables at the back of a large print dictionary.
I would start with some basic categories of symbols which don't meet CFI: punctuation, math and numerals, proofing marks, etc, and create an appendix for each. In a table or list, each symbol should probably have its most important English name or names. Since the names will link to dictionary entries, it may not be necessary to list any additional names, or descriptions, or translations. I see these as minimal lists of links, visual indexes for symbols the reader may recognize but might not be able to name. I would also link to a related Wikipedia topic at the bottom of the page, but not for each symbol; the focus should remain as an index to dictionary entries, which may link on to Wikipedia and elsewhere. Michael Z. 2009-04-21 19:14 z


Adjective: of, or pertaining to a marsupial. Isn't this just a regular attributive adjective? We don't accept these, right (although there are some translations thereunder which could be worth a keep) --Jackofclubs 13:45, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

It has a limited amount of use as a true adjective. Consider the following cases, respectively, of gradable, comparative, and predicate use:
2002, Fiction Fix: First Injection, page 58:
But there's this pouch just below my belly button, very marsupial, where the kangaroo lives.
1952, The Motor‎, page 520:
It seemed to me, meandering around Earls Court, that motors should be more marsupial.
1892, The American naturalist‎, page 125:
Showing that this animal is marsupial, consists of the following characters.

DCDuring TALK 16:18, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

  • Great. Maybe there should be a(nother) definition as having a pouch or similar. --Jackofclubs 06:18, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
    Would that be the attributive use of the noun sense, as in marsupial mouse? Beats me whether we are supposed to include that as an adjective sense. Michael Z. 2009-04-23 14:49 z
  • The reason I troubled to find and provide the particular citations above is that predicate, graded, and comparative use are three markers of true adjectivity. (BTW, I am not sure that the usage in the "more" quote is comparative, though certainly graded.) DCDuring TALK 16:08, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
    Good info. This kind of thing should be recommended in WT:ELE, or in subguidelines for particular POS headings. Michael Z. 2009-04-23 16:53 z

RFD passed, since everyone seems to accept DCDuring's cites as demonstrating adjectivality. :-)   —RuakhTALK 01:36, 30 June 2009 (UTC)


Someone hid the adverb sense with a comment that it made no sense. I've heard the phrase "bored silly" before, and it is easily cited, and there silly seems to be an adverb. Does this warrant an entry, or move to bored silly? --Jackofclubs 06:16, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

It's not an adverb. It's the same sort of construction as "painted red". Equinox 14:27, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

floor tile

Basically any tile that goes on a floor. Is there any other reasonable way to interpret this or any reason to have it in the dictionary? Equinox 14:23, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

Whatever the outcome, roof tile should be IMO treated the same.--Duncan 14:40, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
OED's definition of roof-tile (quotes include roof tile) implies that it used to mean ridge-tile, but has come to mean roofing tile, so it doesn't seem to be SoP historically. Michael Z. 2009-04-25 16:46 z
Delete per precedent but I wouldn't mind keeping this e.g. as a phrasebook entry. It's what the thing is called, more specifically than tile. DAVilla 04:56, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Isn't "roof tile" a simple case of an Egyptian pyramid? Doesn't it meet the in-between test? ("*floor clay tile", vs "clay floor tile")
Doesn't it fit into a simple conventional naming system (floor, wall, roof)?
The closed spelling "floortile" would be attestable, even though the open spelling floor tile is much more common. IOW, there is doubt about the orthography.
These latter two are some of the weaker Pawley criteria for idiomaticity. If there is enough evidence of idiomaticity from the weaker criteria, should we include?
For multi-word terms, have we done a review of the cases where our rules as we can apply them exclude something but a number of us are not sure that they should be deleted? Of is our basic pattern to keep by vote even if there is no good rationale under the rules? Despite dressing up our decisions with rationales, are we voting based on our sense of what should be included. If we are, shouldn't we broaden the electorate by encouraging a large population of voters to just vote on term inclusion? DCDuring TALK 12:25, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
The latter scenario sounds like ignoring our own rules even more. I don't see any guidelines which let us throw the guidelines in the bin whenever a bunch of us feel like it.
Who is PawleyMichael Z. 2009-06-18 12:51 z
The question in my mind is whether we are actually voting with our intuitions but convincing ourselves that we are systematically applying explicit criteria. It is the difficulty folks have in "correctly" applying what pass for criteria that makes me suspicious. OTOH, there are few human decision processes that could not be so described. Most such systems have a rich mythology which cloaks them in protective garb against fundamental challenge, which is probably as it should and must be.
See w:Andrew Pawley and User:DCDuring/Pawley. I don't know the source of the list. Perhaps DAVilla knows. DCDuring TALK 15:21, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

computer mouse

Non-idiomatic SoP, like computer keyboard or computer speakers. Equinox 00:58, 28 April 2009 (UTC)

I dunno. There is a MUCH more significant difference between the senses that an unqualified mouse can have vs. a computer mouse than between a computer keyboard and a keyboard. To wit, a computer mouse is certainly not a type of mouse, whereas computer keyboards and speakers are types of keyboards and speakers. There is also an interesting question as to whether mouse (computer sense) should be defined simply as "a computer mouse" (as we might do with page -> webpage), but we'd need to dig into old informatics document to determine which term might have come first (though "computer mouse" would certainly be a curious type of retronym). Circeus 05:33, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Computer mouse is only used when the context doesn't make the sense clear, just like computer keyboard.
OED's quotations:
  1. 1965: “a device called the ‘mouse’”
  2. 1967: “a device called the ‘mouse’”
  3. 1977: “a pointing device called a mouse”
  4. 1982: “a hand-held device known as a mouse.”
  5. 1997: “people inside clicking on mouses”
OED also includes nine compounds with mouse, each with quotations, but the phrase computer mouse only appears once, in the definition of mousematMichael Z. 2009-05-04 23:36 z
It looks like this should be deleted although there's a lingering question. Isn't this how one would be less ambiguous in naming the item? How do we denote on mouse that "computer mouse" is a synonym? DAVilla 08:11, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Like this, perhaps? --Duncan 09:40, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Revise. I think any term for which we can say, "this is what the thing is commonly called" and unambiguously so, should be kept (edit: weakly, minimally) as a phrasebook entry at the very least. DAVilla 12:50, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Is there any evidence that computer mouse is used with significant frequency? We don't add bold-italic notes screaming computer port to the entry port, computer keyboard to keyboard, or computer console to consoleMichael Z. 2009-05-27 01:52 z
It shows up 74 times in COCA. MIT's Technology Review had it in 2007, referring to Ideo having designed the "first mass-market computer mouse". It might seem funny to refer to designing the "first mass-market mouse", especially in an article that mentions cloning and genetic engineering as well as computer animation. (See other mass-market mouse.) DCDuring TALK 02:20, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Google Books: 956 for computer mouse, 688 for computer port, 1,424 for computer keyboard, 964 for computer console. --Duncan 09:21, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Well, computer keyboard is certainly not unreasonable, but I could only consider such a collocation for as a phrasebook entry. Idiomaticity is a highly refined and stable rule and one that I should be more reluctant to bend. DAVilla 08:24, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Also, compare the hits of "mouse click" to "computer mouse click" (or mouse pointer, mouse pad, etc.). Can't really do it with COCA because computer mouse is too rare. I think the combinations “computer x” are not idiomatic at all, only used when the context requires disambiguation. Michael Z. 2009-05-27 12:24 z

Locational Based Marginal Pricing

Seems like [[location]]-[[based]] [[marginal]] [[pricing]] or [[w:LMP]] et al. DCDuring TALK 00:52, 29 April 2009 (UTC)

Keep as a set phrase in a specific industry. Its meaning is impossible to establish from sum of parts. Evidence of worldwide usage on web and in books. However, not sure it needs to be caps, as some of them are lower case, also hyphenated between locational and based.--Dmol 03:34, 29 April 2009 (UTC)
It is only capitalized in second-rate glossaries. It should not have any capitals. I have no idea what it means, based on the individual words, so keep. —Stephen 05:00, 29 April 2009 (UTC)
Is there any objective evidence behind either of these assertions or is this just a Vote? DCDuring TALK 09:50, 29 April 2009 (UTC)
Where in the title do you say any mention of electricity? Move to lowercase. DAVilla 12:47, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

A quick Google Books search shows locational marginal pricing (LMP) as the most common term (248 results), with a few instances each of location marginal pricing (9), location-based marginal pricing (7), and the practically illiterate locational based marginal pricing (4). Per Wikipedia, it is also called nodal pricing (903). Michael Z. 2009-04-30 01:50 z

One could take any four-word compound (especially an ill-formed one like this) out of a native context in which it is used (and understood in general without definition), and define its use as limited to the context. Moreover one could add senses as it gains traction in other contexts. Interdisciplinary terms would be perfect for this. Variant forms will be abundant. Wiktionary 10 Million! Let a thousand jargons bloom! time-of-day pricing, congestion-based pricing, peak-load pricing, demand-charge pricing, real-time congestion pricing. I might want more than 10,000 words on my watchlist. DCDuring TALK 16:53, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

zoom past

sum of parts? --Jackofclubs 15:52, 29 April 2009 (UTC)

I think so, but see the ongoing discussion at WT:TR#zoom. My "technical" defence of zoom in has weakened since I imagined a camera zooming past something in the scene. Equinox 16:00, 29 April 2009 (UTC)


sense: single-mindedly. Should just be a misspelling of rapt. DCDuring TALK 01:00, 30 April 2009 (UTC)

If it's a reasonably common eggcorn it should be listed as a common misspelling. Circeus 05:36, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

plastic scouser

It speaks or itself. DCDuring TALK 09:17, 30 April 2009 (UTC)

Cited, but I think it should not be capitalised — at the very least plastic shouldn't. Equinox 10:07, 1 May 2009 (UTC)
Moved. DCDuring TALK 11:48, 1 May 2009 (UTC)
Attestation isn't the primary issue. "Plastic" is used to mean "ersatz", "second-rate", "wannabe" all the time. This seems just another instance of the miracle of logocombination. DCDuring TALK 11:46, 1 May 2009 (UTC)
Does plastic mean this of people as well? DAVilla 12:43, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
It certainly has had the meaning. That meaning was part of the resonance for the career advice given to Dustin Hoffman's character in w:The Graduate. I note that our definition doesn't have that sense. DCDuring TALK 15:06, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
This] work discusses the meanings I have in mind. DCDuring TALK 15:12, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
I had wondered whether the sense was dated. It doesn't seem to be. The application to people may have been somewhat out of fashion. I have in-line cites at plastic which should mostly be moved to citations:plastic when the discussion is done. DCDuring TALK 16:24, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Okay, delete. DAVilla 11:27, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

May 2009


I'm just wondering what the source for this is? I've never heard of it, nor as any dictionary I can lay my hands on. Interesting for something to be proscribed and virtually inexistant at the same time. Having said that, I should try a few Google searches before I make any more comments. Mglovesfun 23:04, 2 May 2009 (UTC)

Actually strong delete now, google.fr returns 66 hits for "tu tuses" all of which seem to be misspellings of tu t'uses. "Que tu tuses" (as in Spanish, most subjunctives follow que) gets erm, zero hits. Mglovesfun 23:11, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
My French isn't very good, but if this is "first and third-person present subjunctive", why would it take tu (second person)? I found for instance on the Web (referring to Hitler): "qu'il tuse des millions de gens pour en sauver des milliards", but it is a rare aberration and probably an error. Equinox 23:21, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
Not at all, it's VERY strongly marked (low slang) Quebec form where a "theoretical" (you would not normally pronounce final "e") vowel hiatus is eliminated. Here are a few examples (none of which are citeable, something that would be eminently hard to find, but still): CRISSSSS. Faut que je la TUSE! (talking about a spider), attend que je le tuse ton chien a la con (being told "my dog could have done better), (rapeller moi quil faut que je le tuse). The TLFQ Database actually manages to dig quite a few citations. Want me to collect those? Circeus 23:45, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
You're not wrong Equinox, I worded that quite badly, so here goes. On Google.fr with "include French results only" and in quotation marks:
  • Que je tuse - 1
  • Que tu tuses - 0
  • Qu'il tuse - 2
  • Qu'elle tuse - 0
  • Qu'on tuse - 1
  • Que nous tusions - 0
  • Que vous tusiez - 0
  • Qu'ils tusent - 0
  • Qu'elles tusent - 0
So that's 4 Mglovesfun 23:49, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
Okay I just read that. So why can't you do that with any verb? Makes me think of the old -in' problem that any verb can have a form ending in -in'. Mglovesfun 23:53, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
It's not that you can't, it's that few very common verbs (i.e. verbs basic that a strongly proscribed process would affect them), end in -uer or -ouer. You'll find example for tuer and jouer, possibly louer (here's one), but not verbs like rouer or éberluer. It's a context thing. It's the same reason a verb like "engueuler" does not, in fact, have a subjunctive imperfect (I dare you to find literary quotes!): a wroter that uses that verbal tense is at best highly unlikely to use the word, just as someone who writes a text in which joue -> jouse is unlikely to use the verb "allouer" (they'd use "permettre"). Circeus 00:00, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Haha, I'll have a go at that. Foutre doesn't have a past historic or an imperfect subjunctive in any (paper) dictionary that I know, but you can find it a lot on the web (je foutis and je foutus). Oh by the way, this. Mglovesfun 00:09, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm quite willing to revise the entries (gotta make one for tusent, too), but I'm not going to back down from believing they warrant listing. Circeus 00:12, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Shall we wait for someone else to contribute then? Mglovesfun 21:52, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
It is definitely not valid French. Perhaps some Quebec slang, but what is the difference with bad spelling ? In the quote "rapeller moi quil faut que je le tuse", do you want to create rapeller (rappeler) too ? I think we should delete tuse and tuses. We are not a normative dictionary, but it is too rare and close to bad spelling in my opinion. Koxinga 22:35, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
As an ex-Marseillais Parisian, I'm against Template:trad, Template:trad and Template:trad without a relevant dialect specification. JackPotte 03:15, 4 May 2009 (UTC)
These are irrelevant to the point in that they don't affect pronunciation. As mentioned above, I can dig up several written quotes with dates ranging from at least 1930s-70s. I won't bother if the thing are gonna get deleted anyway. I wouldn't object to losing louse, though, for which I can hardly find actual quotes (although there seem to be a slangy homonymous verb borrowed from English lose in use in Europe, whice complicates things). Circeus 06:01, 4 May 2009 (UTC)
Mglovesfun, and for the record: The consensus in the past was that we do have entries ending in "in'" if attested. If someone wants I can dig up the conversation (I think). Because this is off-topic in this conversation, and to make sure I see your request (I'm not always at a computer that can bring up the huge RFD page), please ask me at my talkpage rather than here if you want me to dig it up.msh210 15:56, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Added quotes for all three forms of tuer (not sure why there are much more available in the TLFQ database for the plural than the singulars), and adjusted the tags: it's much more nonstandard, even for slang, than proscribed (which maps to "disputed"). Circeus 06:37, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Kept as cited and tagged. --Jackofclubs 15:53, 17 June 2009 (UTC)



See above. Mglovesfun 23:04, 2 May 2009 (UTC)

Kept these --Jackofclubs 15:53, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

compassionate conservativisms

This is just a weird one. The plural of a misspelling, and even for the correct spelling, wouldn't that be an uncountable noun? When do people ever use conservatisms and fascisms (etc.). Mglovesfun 21:51, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

For particular flavours or instances: "War and imperialism were intrinsic in German and Italian fascisms". Not sure about this one, either, though. It's almost non-existent in the plural. Equinox 21:57, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
It's more the fact that in the singular, it's listed as a misspelling. It would be a bit like creating iritate (reasonable) but then creating the conjugation as well ; iritates, -ed, -ing. Hmm, this needs some thought. Mglovesfun 22:04, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
I see that conservativism is only glossed as an "alternate spelling", though. Equinox 22:10, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
For the moment, the " correct" spelling is listed as uncountable (I didn't write the articles) while the misspelling has a plural. I don't insist on deletion if it can be avoided, but clearly it's a problem that needs fixing in some way. Mglovesfun 22:15, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Mac OS

Seems to be sum-of-parts to me: Mac + OS. --EncycloPetey 03:27, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Sum of parts.,--Dmol 04:47, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
The phrase is a proper name and trademark. Of course you can't infer this from the sum of its parts. Mac OS has a status and significance which Mac operating system lacks. Michael Z. 2009-05-05 13:51 z
Exactly, and this leaves us with the attestation part. Move to RfV -- Prince Kassad 13:56, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
Is that necessary? It'll be easy enough to find plenty instances of “Mac OS desktop,” “Mac OS apps,” “Mac OS systems,” “Mac OS machines,” “Mac OS market” (these are actual quotes from americancorpus.org) Michael Z. 2009-05-05 14:33 z
Those would usually not be good cites (except perhaps the "market" ones): See WT:CFI#Brand_names and the more detailed Wiktionary:Criteria for inclusion/Brand names.—msh210 23:10, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
It is a trademark for a specific brand of OS. Keep for the same reason as Windows: it's common and does have attributive usage. Equinox 16:27, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
Send to RFV.msh210 23:10, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
This sets a bad precedent. A term shouldn't be considered idiomatic only because it is a brand name. Clearly this is Mac + OS, probably attestable, even by brand name criteria, but not idiomatic. Delete. DAVilla 08:07, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Maybe. I don't know about idiomatic, but we have separate heading for proper names, and separate entries for significant capitalization (the latter can be problematic).
It looks like the phrase “Mac OS” may have been used rarely as Mac (“Macintosh,” informal abbr., attr.) + OS (“operating system,” abbr), techie shorthand for “Macintosh operating system.” But when Apple adopted this as an official name in 1995, then Mac OS took on a new meaning, or at least new connotation, used in a different context and register. The OS part was now capitalized as part of a proper noun, rather than just as an initialism. The term went from jargon to the new proper name for software separated from its hardware (Apple introduced this name for their OS when it started to ship on non-Apple clones, first in the splash screen and later as the official name). If this usage doesn't warrant a definition, then why isn't Windows just an alternate capitalization of windows? Michael Z. 2009-05-11 04:30 z
Mac OS was SoP even before Apple adopted it. Windows doesn't have any parts to sum. DAVilla 12:37, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Then shall I file RfD's for Academy Awards, Mercedes-Benz, Sesame Street, Victoria's Secret, Häagen-Dazs, Pan-Cake, Tetra Pak, etc, citing lack of metaphorical citations? Michael Z. 2009-05-25 23:21 z
Judging from Google Book hits, most of these would pass an RFV, Häagen-Dazs barely so. I'm not at all sure about Pan-Cake due to the difficulty of searching, and Tetra Pak I have the least confidence in. But the others would just be a waste of someone's valuable time. DAVilla 04:32, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
Adding good quotations is certainly not a waste. I'm just trying to pin down the principal, and on which side of it these terms fall. Michael Z. 2009-05-27 03:36 z
Revise: Conditional delete. To be admitted I would want to see metaphoric use per the suggested CFI on specific entities. DAVilla 19:14, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
In other words, I guess I would RFV after all, but looking for specific citations. Metaphoric use counters the non-idiomatic sum-of-parts argument. DAVilla 04:32, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

hexadecimal notation

The definition is fine, but I think this is non-idiomatic sum of parts. Compare the more or less equally common binary notation, octal notation, etc. (for different bases), and also similar constructs like shorthand notation. Putting the two words together doesn't, as far as I can see, say anything unique and dictionary-worthy. Equinox 21:08, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete or improve. The definition seems wrong to me - it describes it as a number system, whereas it is actually the representation of that system. SemperBlotto 21:37, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Delete SoP.—msh210 22:53, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Delete, hexadecimal covers this already. SoP. Mglovesfun 15:46, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep: it's SoP according to hexadecimal, but hexadecimal should be corrected: by itself, it doesn't convey the idea of using 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,A,B,C,D,E,F, just as decimal does not convey the idea of using 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 (other symbols are used as well in some countries). And I think that hexadecimal notation does convey this idea (unless I'm wrong). Of course, the same applies to octal notation, etc. Lmaltier 16:18, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
    • I don't think hexadecimal notation conveys that.—msh210 18:21, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. Improve hexadecimal and hexadecimal notation. Our definition at [[hexadecimal]] is ahistorical, not having the original and most general definition of the adjective ("relating to the number 16"). The noun "hexadecimal" is almost certainly a shortening of "hexadecimal notation", though I don't know the point of splitting the etymology in the entry. And any symbolic representation of a base-16 number system would still be "hexadecimal", though obviously the most common use is as (poorly) defined in the entry. DCDuring TALK 18:45, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Re: "The noun 'hexadecimal' is almost certainly a shortening of 'hexadecimal notation'": Given that there are so many synonymous phrases of the form "hexadecimal + <noun>" (hexadecimal notation, hexadecimal form, hexadecimal representation, etc.), how can you tell which one it's a shortening of? My own experience doesn't lead me to feel that it's a shortening of any specific one of them, but I'm definitely open to that possibility, if there's evidence for it. —RuakhTALK 19:56, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Right. My point should have been hexadecimal#Adjective (original meaning) > use in phrases (with "system", "form", "notation", "format", "code", "number", etc) with meaning like what's in entry > hexadecimal#Noun > hex. To not have a representative of the intervening step would make it difficult to present such evolution, should we wish to, without either redlinks or links to WP.
hexadecimal notation seems to me to be the best representative. Looking at OneLook, 37 references have "hexadecimal"; 11: "hexadecimal notation"; 9: "hexadecimal system"; 4: hexadecimal number and hexadecimal digit. Only Wordnet and Collins among the non-copycat dictionaries have hexadecimal notation, but it the only compound term that any lexical authorities have included. DCDuring TALK 20:54, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete. This is a general occurrence with "X notation", it's hard to define X on it's own - it seems (on my highly huge guesswork/not really understanding scale) to be a noun describing a type of representation that is often used attributively for clarification: "Numbers are given in hexadecimal", "I wrote the number in hexadecimal notation", "I used hexadecimal format to write the number", "I can read the hexidecimal representation of a number". I had the same problem trying to define dotted decimal. Conrad.Irwin 09:09, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Change from delete to weak delete, what you've said above is true, however if you want to know the definition you can still look up hexadecimal and notation and voilà! Mglovesfun 14:05, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
I have added #hexadecimal number, driven by my hobgoblin. DCDuring TALK 20:30, 7 May 2009 (UTC)

chocolate chunk

Pretty SoP. What says the comunidade? — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 18:03, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

delete But: both terms are polysemic (5 senses each). By our current arguments, which seem to be offered and accepted in good faith, this might be included. The results of this seem preposterous to me, both in general and in the instant case. DCDuring TALK 18:22, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Consider someone who bakes a mammoth chocolate-chunk cookie, say some yards in diameter, so as to get into the record books. I would accept the ingredients as "chocolate chunks" even if they were mammoth also. Thus, chocolate chunk is not "a chunk of chocolate of a particular size" but rather simply "a chunk of chocolate that cannot be better called by another name (such as 'chocolate chip' or 'chocolate bar')" — and so a sum of its parts. Delete.msh210 18:49, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Weak keep, as per chocolate chip. Mglovesfun 12:16, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete This is just a chunk of chocolate, with no defined shape or use (while a chocolate chip is actually not chipped from chocolate). Michael Z. 2009-05-07 15:02 z
Weak keep Chocolate chunks have a peculiarity that they hardly exist outside of other things. Only chocolate chunks things (chocolate chunk break, cookies, cake etc.) are easily found in real life. Also noticeable that commercial chocolate chunks (those used in 90% of these chocolate chunk things anyway) are actually molded or cut to a defined size, rather than broken the way "general" chunks are. In fact, they remind of "chocolate squares", a more-or-less standardized size references used for cooking-grade chocolates (a "square" being a rectangular broken piece along the lines molded in the piece). Circeus 01:53, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
We break up slabs of baker's chocolate to make the cookies (I recommend adding pecans). I haven't even seen pre-packaged chocolate chunks. Wouldn't they be in the grocery aisle next to grated cheese and baked pizza crustMichael Z. 2009-05-11 03:29 z
That wouldn't be practical on a commercial, much less industrial scale. That's why you can buy them from many chocolate makers. Note that almost all of them are square/rectangular, and that in the first case, they are qualified because it is clearly NOT expected that they would be irregularly shaped by default. Circeus 02:22, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
My point is that chocolate chunks aren't only an industrial product, and perhaps mainly not one. I looked at the first 10 Google Books results for "chocolate chunk" OR "chocolate chunks": (all are recipes) of 7 with previews, five called for chopping up baker's chocolate, two simply called for unqualified “chocolate chunks”.
Going by this very tiny corpus, chocolate chunks are just chunks of chocolate. Michael Z. 2009-05-12 17:57 z
Delete per Michael Z. et alii.  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 18:27, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Chocolate piece(s) cookies, chocolate bit(s) cookies, chocolate square cookies... this seemed like it could be a set phrase at first, but I'm having a hard time justifying it in my mind, maybe because it's still a neologism that is not well enough defined to be idiomatic, as chocolate chips are with their well-known conical shape. DAVilla 14:13, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

Deleted.RuakhTALK 15:20, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

humble abode

humble home

Both SoP.—msh210 19:48, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

Delete both Being a cliché isn't one of the CFI. Michael Z. 2009-05-07 15:04 z
Yeah, should delete these I think. Equinox 15:07, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Agree, both now deleted. Mglovesfun (talk) 19:08, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

chip butty

bacon butty

These are defined as "a sandwich with butter and [bacon|chips]". Really? Our entry butty just says a sandwich, no mention of butter. if all our definitions are correct and complete, then these entries are not SoP — but I doubt that that's the case. Any Rightpondians wish to chime in here, please?—msh210 19:55, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

  • "A rightpondian responds" - I think that our definition of butty is not good enough. I'm pretty sure that it (originally?) means a slice of bread and butter (or equivalent spread), with or without something else spread on top. It has acquired the meaning of sandwich as it moved south. When I make a bacon butty, I don't put any butter (etc.) on the bread as the bacon is fatty enough. (chip butties are beyond my personal ken, but would seem to be treated the same) SemperBlotto 08:54, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
As above, you can put almost anything in a butty, particularly chips, egg and bacon. Probably a weak delete' because chip butty is a set phrase in the UK, albeit it's a butty with chips in it. Mglovesfun 12:13, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. In the U.S., we don’t know what that is. Probably needs a Common misspellings redirect from bacon booty, which is how I think most Americans would try to spell it. chip butty needs work. I assume it doesn’t mean American potato chips, but probably french fries. —Stephen 13:28, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
bacon buttie and chip buttie are attestable as well I think. I'm pretty sure that we have buttie. Oh we don't, hang on I'll find a citation. Mglovesfun 14:13, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
No, in the U.S. we don't know what a butty is. If I know what a butty is, then I know what a bacon|chip butty is. Or am I misunderstanding what you wrote, SGB?—msh210 18:24, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

gravitational convection

Encyclopedic. RfD tagged in Feb, 2009; not yet discussed here. DCDuring TALK 01:23, 7 May 2009 (UTC)

Mostly needs a good whacking of the trimmer, but probably worth a definition. Circeus 05:11, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Agree, keep. Mglovesfun 14:02, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. I wasn't aware gravity convects. Actually it doesn't intransitively, only transitively. I.e. the fluid is convecting, and gravity causing it. Not entirely obvious. DAVilla 08:00, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Is our new procedure to take a vote as whether anyone is unfamiliar with the term? Is that in WT:CFI? Is WT:CFI a dead letter? Why isn't this just an "only in Wikipedia" entry? DCDuring TALK 11:48, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
You're confusing "having too much encyclopedic content" and "not satisfying CFI". The former is ground for trimming, not deletion. I have no idea where in WT:CFI you can read it is. Circeus 01:41, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
My comment was tongue in cheek. I wasn't aware gravity convects because gravity in fact does not convect (itself, i.e. intransitively), but it does effect convection on something else. Or maybe it does convect, in some sort of wave phenomenon? But that would have nothing to do with liquids or the sense in question.
Two nouns like snow train can have different interpretations depending on how you think the parts might fit together. Does it carry snow? Is it made of snow? Does it plow the snow aside for a regular train? Sometimes you have to forget you know what the term means, and see if the correct answer is attainable and certain, if it jumps out at you. This one does not, as it would seem to pertain to the gravity field itself.
I did not mean simply that I was unfamiliar with (the science of) gravitational convection, and I would find those terms shaky if used to decide these matters. (Stephen's comments are excused on the basis that he almost always votes to keep.) DAVilla 13:46, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep and trim. I don't see what makes this any less valid than forced convection, free convection or natural convection. It just has a lot more words. The entire description of what gravitational convection is doesn't need to be there, just the most important parts. Summarize. Concisely. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein
I'd be happy to run the other convection terms through the process for "fairness". Each entry should be standing on its own, however.
Is this an idiom? Can a dictionary definition do it justice? Does it make sense to someone who "understands" gravity and convection? Would template {{only in}} be more helpful or less misleading than a two-line definition? DCDuring TALK 03:03, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

application domain

def seems wrong. But also probably SoP. DCDuring TALK 01:29, 7 May 2009 (UTC)

I can’t guess the meaning, so it isn’t SoP. It it’s really a term, it should be defined by somebody who knows what it is. —Stephen 13:21, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Confusingly, WP has two separate articles that don't link to each other: w:Application Domain (the Microsoft .NET software concept, which is what this entry was defining) and w:Application domain (unrelated broader term where a "domain" is a sub-discipline). I have rewritten the def (in the given Microsoft sense) to try to make it a bit clearer. Equinox 15:03, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
As I understand it, in programming, an "application domain" is the (virtual) space in which the application rules as reserved by its liege, the .NET framework. This does make us into a bit of a shill for Microsoft. How does it work in other realms? Would this be a good use of {{only in}}, pointing at Wikipedia? DCDuring TALK 15:27, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Yes, this term exists only in the .NET world. Mind you, I think the same thing applies to delegate, and I'd be sorry to lose that. Equinox 15:53, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
The closest in IBM mainframe programming is the "problem state" - the state in which application programs run, as opposed to "supervisor state" in which the operating system runs and can execute more powerful op-codes. SemperBlotto 15:34, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
I don't think that's entirely the same. The "application domain" isn't a restricted domain for applications only, like userland: it is per application, so you might have Excel, Word and Notepad all running in separate application domains (supposing they were .NET applications). Equinox 15:47, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Interesting. This really just seems like a metaphor to an outsider, but it must have a life of its own. Can the use of a metaphor by a single vendor and its minions be deemed independent use? Is Microsoft like IUPAC for chemical names and the French Academy for French, the authority on language within its domain? DCDuring TALK 17:08, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Well, Microsoft dictates the language of its own technologies, yes — not only because you must use their terms to be easily understood by other .NETters, but also because the languages tend to enforce the terminology. (For example, if you want to do something to an application domain in your source code, you are likely to have to instantiate the AppDomain class: that's its built-in name.) IMO, the real question is whether we consider the technology (.NET generally, and app domains specifically) broad and important enough for inclusion in a dictionary. I would say this is a relatively obscure term and I expect some proportion of professional .NET programmers haven't had to care about them. Equinox 21:49, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

moot point

An important collocation whose quotes are worth salvaging for moot, but a SoP nonetheless that offers virtually nothing that cannot be covered in moot. Circeus 05:13, 7 May 2009 (UTC)

Keep, SoP yes but it's a set phrase rather than two words put randomly together. The example above would be chocolate chip -- that's just a chip made out of chocolate, but it's also a set phrase. Mglovesfun 14:05, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete. I don't think it's much of a set phrase, since I equally often see "The point is moot." Equinox 15:05, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep In 3 OneLook legal dictionaries, Websters 1913, and AHD. Also a contranym that users probably need help with. See WorldWideWords. DCDuring TALK 15:40, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Isn't it moot that's the contranym?—msh210 15:52, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
I'd love to keep this, since, per DCDuring, people may look it up. So let me try to see whether we can somehow get it to fit into the CFI  :-) . Here are some options:
  • Keep as a redirect to [[moot]]. WT:REDIR seems to forbid this, but is not quite explicit.
  • Keep under the "Once one goeth black" test, since moot used to mean only "debatable" whereas moot point means only or largely "undebatable point".
  • If moot point means only "undebatable point", then keep under the "fried egg" test.
That last is the strongest argument for keeping imo, assuming its hypothesis is met.—msh210 15:52, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
In the 99 uses of "moot point" at COCA, only 1 (academic) use seemed to me to be clearly meaning "open to/worth further discussion", as opposed to "no longer worth serious consideration/good only for idle discussion". So, it would all depend on what the meaning of only is. DCDuring TALK 16:49, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Maybe moot point is idiomatic, but I can't find anything in CFI about set phrases. (A chocolate chip is not chipped out of chocolate, nor shaped like a chip. It's not S-o-P.)
Why don't we list common or set-phrase S-o-P compounds and derived terms under the component entries without linking? Then “moot point” could be easily found under both moot and point by searching. Michael Z. 2009-05-07 16:40 z
If you mean a chip like a small stone, yes it is! Mglovesfun 20:53, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Naw, a stone chip is typically a small, angular stone fractured or chipped from a larger (as opposed to a round pebble, perhaps). Similarly, wood chips are the result of chopping, cutting, carving, and so on. Chocolate is often chipped, for example when you break a bar of it, but the small bits resulting from that are not what we conventionally call chocolate chips. Chocolate chips are formed from hardened droplets, with flat bottoms. Michael Z. 2009-05-08 06:35 z
The reason might be to keep our entry as short as possible. DCDuring TALK 16:49, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
I'd like to keep it, per being a set phrase. Which brings me to the point that WT:CFI should IMHO better be extended to allow set phrases. The only problem I can see with this is how to recognize a set phrase using a verifiable and easily decidable rule, other than the commonality of the collocation. A provisional solution is to let set phrase undefined, and let people argue about what is and what is not a set phrase per case-to-case basis. This arguing is going to provide candidate differentia from which a definition of set phrase for the purpose of WT:CFI can be built. There is at least one axiom that constrains the meaning of set phrase: a term may be a set phrase and yet be a sum of parts or border on being sum of parts.
Once we allow set phrases, the fact that certain dictionaries have the term will support, though not prove, the hypothesis that the term in question is a set phrase.
One criterion showing that "moot point" is a set phrase, along with the commonality, is that "moot" does not combine freely with other nouns, but only with "point", provided I am correct in this assumption. For contrast, "blue cup" can be also common, just that, unlike "moot" in "moot point", "blue" combines freely with nouns denoting physical objects. --Dan Polansky 21:55, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Unfortunately this doesn't seem to be an easy case. COCA has 226 uses of "moot" followed by a noun. 19 are single instances, some possibly erroneous; 4 involve Proper noun "Moot". 100 are of "moot point(s)"; 47 are of moot court(s), nearly 75% of the core usage. But "case" (23), "issue" (10), and "question" (18) also get significant usage, though "case" seems to be mostly from a single academic article. It is not yet unproductive, at least in written works, especially in a legal/legislative context. DCDuring TALK 00:15, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
I should have done my research first; thank you for the COCA numbers. So the criterion of lack of free combination is not so simple as I had wished. Yet, the other combinations of "moot" that you mention may be further candidates for set phrases. Like, for "moot case", there is this quotation:
'The term "moot case" has been used on various occasions to describe issues that are or ...'[16]
suggesting to me that the term is in need of explanation. The same term is used by [17]:
"The old prohibition on the decision of moot cases is now so riddled with exceptions that it is almost a matter of discretion whether to hear a moot case."
--Dan Polansky 09:30, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
FWIW, if we use the broader context form: you get 140 use of moot within four words of "point". "Issue" returns 50 hits, "question" is 55, and "problem" is 11. Yes it's a set phrase. So are silent film and picky eater. Neither of these three has any sort of elements that cannot be deduced by looked at the two words separately in a dictionary. Circeus 03:16, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
The term "silent film" should get an entry. In Czech, it is called "němý film", literally translated back to English as "mute film" or "dumb film", as "němý" stands for "mute, dumb (not having the power of speech)"; in German, it is Stummfilm. "Should" of course means not with reference to the non-SoP criterion; it is this criterion that I am criticizing for being too stringent, ruling out too many entries.
The German case shows that per the non-SoP criterion, whether a term makes it into Wiktionary depends on such happenstances as whether it is written together as one word. Like, there is a potential discussion about "silent film", but not about "Stummfilm" and "headache", which is but an ache of head.
One more note on the non-SoP criterion: the criterion asks whether the meaning of the term can be derived from its parts. But there is the other direction, which asks whether the term can be derived from the meaning. It is this other direction that likely fails for non-native speakers, as is the case with "silent film". Once you present me with the term "silent film", I correctly estimate that it means "film accompanied by no sound, as produced during the early times of film". But when you present me with the definition "film accompanied by no sound" before I have seen the term "silent film", I have difficulties coming up with the term "silent film"; based on the Czech and German terms, I would probably improvise "dumb film". This is not the case will freely combining adjectives such as "blue" in "blue cup".
This criterion of the other direction, from definition to term, also applies to "headache": while I can estimate the meanining of "headache" from the meanings of "head" and "ache", I cannot estimate "headache" from "the pain in the head" unless I already know the term "headache". --Dan Polansky 09:35, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
While I see the argument (I actually made the same with regard to cherry blossom~), this opens the door wide to a multiplication of increasingly improbable entries (i.e. "talk with irony", "be ironic" for ironiser) based on whether the foreign word is a set phrase or not. Circeus 16:14, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
I agree that terms like silent film should have an entry. That particular combination implies many things not present in the simple combination of the two words, such as a range of dates, a style of acting, the fact that it will be black-and-white, etc. That said, moot point does not carry such additional connotation. I can say "That is a moot point" or I can say "That point is moot." This entry ought to be deleted, as far as I can see. --EncycloPetey 21:11, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
These are encyclopedic facts about silent films, not defining characteristics of the word “silent film”. Although mentioning some of them may help the dictionary reader, it may not. I've seen silent films made in the 21st century. Michael Z. 2009-05-11 05:41 z
Delete unfortunately. I do like the collocation, but there's just no way to measure their worth. Idiomatically, it fails. DAVilla 08:02, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. Delete as per EP and DAVilla. While we're about it, I would approve the creation of "silent film". -- ALGRIF talk 12:18, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
I should have read DCDuring more carefully. The meaning has changed over time, to be the opposite of what it once was. An almost certain keep. DAVilla 13:35, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Except that it hasn't, the evolution is that of moot, "moot point" has not "evolved" by itself by any definition of "evolved". Circeus 03:15, 19 May 2009 (UTC)
Their histories seem intertwined. Moot could have derived its modern meaning from the use in this very phrase. DAVilla 19:11, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep, important common collocation. Ƿidsiþ 21:23, 20 May 2009 (UTC)

Kept.RuakhTALK 14:46, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

North Queensland

Not an official term for any part of Queensland, so North Queensland is just sum-of-parts.--Dmol 08:20, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

Presumably created from the WP article, which does capitalise it as though it were a single unit. But perhaps they just wanted to give the northern part its own article? Equinox 10:11, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
But there is no place named North Queensland. (With capital letters). Nor is there a South, East or West, as proper nouns. It's just a vague reference to the undefined northern part of the state, like saying north Utah or southern Manitoba. Having an article in Wikipedia does not mean there should be Wiktionary entry for the same name. --Dmol 10:57, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Vagueness is not a criterion. "Appalachia", "the w:Adarondacks", "Scythia", and the City (part of London) are all vague. WT:CFI makes no special provision for gazeteer entries. We are in "common-law" mode relying on precedent. Who remembers and can find the cases? If you can't, you have to rely on those who can. Nice system. DCDuring TALK 11:17, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep - This nomination is ridiculous, the term "North Queensland" is often used to describe a portion of Queensland. There is an article on it at Wikipedia w:North Queensland and a Google search comes up with Results 2,760,000 for "North Queensland". (0.42 seconds) WritersCramp 13:25, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. See also Northern Europe, Central Europe, Southern Europe, Eastern Europe, Southern European, Central European, etc. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 13:53, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. Like North America. Queensland is very big and has distinct regions usued in government planning and general reference —This unsigned comment was added by (talk).
Looking through Google Books,[18] and americancorpus.org, I see that this is capitalized both ways. Someone should examine the results to see if there's any difference in meaning. Michael Z. 2009-05-08 16:54 z

I’ve made some significant changes and think they should pass scrutiny. Firstly, I’ve taken out the category “States of Australia” as North Queensland is not a state. It is just the northern part of the state of Queensland. I’ve removed the Related Term, as it listed the Northern Territory as a part of Queensland. It’s not, and I had already corrected this. And I have changed the definition, removing - The group of northern territories in the state of Queensland in Australia – which implies there is a set of defined territories, which is not the case. I have put in - The northern part of the state of Queensland, loosely defined as being north of either Rockhampton or Mackay – with an informal tag.

This should cover the fact that there is no official definition of North Queensland, it is always informal. If no-one objects to these changes, I'll take out the RFD. (Will wait for consensus)--Dmol 02:58, 9 May 2009 (UTC)

My problem with this is that there is an apparent difference between "north Queensland" (a generic term for the northern part) and "North Queensland" (capitalised and apparently a geographically noteworthy region, as North America is). The whole basis of this RFD was that "North Queensland" is not a unit, or not a particular district. Of course you can put "north" on any place, even the tiniest village, but for it to be a dict entry there should be some evidence of the term being a unit. I think my one weak citation suggests that this is true, but I'd really like to see more concrete evidence. Equinox 03:38, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
The problem is that there is some usage of North Queensland, which incorrectly gives the impression that it is an official name for the region. Better to have an accurate definition which at least defines the rough boundaries of the region, than to have a definition that consisted of inaccurate info and related terms. I still don’t think it belongs, and fear opening the floodgates to all sorts of new entries.
But I'll wait for this to run its course. Cites are needed.--Dmol 05:15, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
For inclusion in the dictionary, it doesn't matter whether this is an official administrative or government subdivision, or whether its boundaries are defined at all. These are encyclopedic qualities of the referent.
It matters whether the usage of the term meets our lexicographical CFI. Whether north Queensland is different from North Queensland also depends on usage, and we should cite some quotations which either support or deny this. Michael Z. 2009-05-09 14:33 z


  1. The second sense says it means "very"; I think it means "as a dog"/"like a dog".
  2. The "as a dog"/"like a dog" sense (as in "dog-eared", "dog-faced", etc) is missing, in any event.
  3. If it does not mean "very", it is a combining form, not a suffix, I think, and, therefore, not includable under our current prevailing practice. DCDuring TALK 18:19, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Sense 2 should go. Equinox 18:24, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
The "very" sense is colloquial. Do we not have dog-tired? (preview) Yeah, see? As such, sense two shouldn't go. The difference is probably regional, subtle. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 14:54, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
Is there any evidence of use as "very" in another term? (Suggestions: dog-weary, dog-cheap, dog-end, dog-poor) Is the meaning "canine-free"? DCDuring TALK 15:21, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete, it's not a prefix it's just the word dog used in combination with another word. What would you say to -stealer as in sheep-stealer, dog-stealer etc. It's not a suffix, just dog + stealer linked with a hyphen. Mglovesfun 15:59, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete. This isn't a prefix; dog is a word in its own right. Words formed from dog are thus compounds in the form "word + word" or "word + suffix", not "prefix + word". --EncycloPetey 15:27, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Not even Affixes (from WorldWideWords), which seems more inclusive than we are with regards to what it calls a suffix or a prefix, includes this. DCDuring TALK 16:21, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Further comments on the use of the dog for similes:
Dyce (Remarks, &c., p. 105) appropriately quotes from the Water Poet :—
Many pretty ridiculous aspersions are cast vpon Dogges, so that it would make a Dogge laugh to heare and vnderstand them : As I haue heard a Man say, I am as hot as a Dogge, or, as cold as a Dogge ; I sweat like a Dogge (when indeed a Dog never sweates), as drunke as a Dogge, hee swore like a Dogge; and one told a Man once, That his Wife was not to be beleev'd, for shee would lye like a Dogge.— Workes, The World runnes on Wheeles, p. 232(1630).
Thou dogged Cineas, hated like a dogge, / For still thou grumblest like a nasty dogge, / Compar'st thyself to nothing but a dogge; / Thou saith thou art as weary as a dogge, / As angry, sicke, and hungry as a dogge, / As dull and melancholly as a dogge, / As lazy, sleepy, idle as a dogge. [19] DCDuring TALK 16:38, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Hello World

Although I'm well aware of the "hello world" program, this feels rather too encyclopaedic and misplaced. 1. The common noun is "uncountable" and "attributive", which suggests it's really just a name being stuck onto "program", as I might say "Code Cracker program" or "Wikipedia Vandaliser program". 2. The proper noun, then, I must agree with, right? Well, no, because I don't think the titles of individual programs are dictionary material, even when it's a common sort of program. Opinions? Equinox 21:43, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

For what it's worth, google books:"the hello world of" suggests that it merits inclusion. —Rod (A. Smith) 21:56, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Wow, good find, even though most of them are in self-conscious "coinage" quotes. But since it's a separate sense (a sort of nerdy synonym for ABC, the fundamentals) it doesn't change my feeling about the invalidity of what we already have. Equinox 22:03, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Strong keep as noun or proper noun or both. I prefer just the proper noun. DAVilla 04:44, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
I have now cleaned this up to my own satisfaction, and I brought it here, so kept and striking. Thanks for the input. Equinox 15:16, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

law of diminishing marginal utility

See WT:RFDO#Transwiki:law of diminishing marginal utility. DCDuring TALK 10:36, 9 May 2009 (UTC)

What's next, second law of thermodynamics? "Only in WP" (where it redirects to a section) would be appropriate. DCDuring TALK 10:50, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep, definitely not just SoP and not easy to understand even by looking up the individual words. I'd rather that we improve the article than delete it. Mglovesfun 16:01, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
That criterion is not in WT:CFI. It's not easy for me to understand why it always rains on weekends, but that doesn't make it includable. What you say is what encyclopedias are for: concepts that fit into a framework. DCDuring TALK 16:34, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
I have to admit you have a point... hmmm. Mglovesfun 18:30, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
I may be wrong; I may be overruled or out-argued. I am not especially biased against technical terms, especially in economics and business. For example, marginal utility seems like a good term for us. DCDuring TALK 18:46, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
I don't have to know what the law is, I just have to know that it is a law about a particular something we already define, to be sum of parts. Delete. DAVilla 08:46, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
I agree. Delete. Equinox 11:49, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
On the other hand it SoP is not sufficient grounds for deleting. Could this be kept on the prior knowledge principle? I just think it's strange that the title says it all. DAVilla 11:12, 18 May 2009 (UTC)
I don't know. The term is not just SoP; it refers to the law of diminishing marginal utility, which can be succinctly stated to fit into a dictionary format. However, this opens door for all kinds of terms denoting particular entities, including the mentioned "second law of thermodynamics". I wonder how Murphy's law would fare, and under what policy item from WT:CFI. There are some eponyms, definitely not SoP, but also laws: Bragg's law, Kepler's laws, Metcalfe's law, Coulomb's law, Murphy's law, Boyle's law, Charles's law, Hooke's law, Hubble's law, Kirchhoff's current law, Kirchhoff's voltage law, Newton's first law, Newton's second law, Newton's third law, Ohm's law. --Dan Polansky 11:55, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
...Poincaré conjecture.—msh210 17:15, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
why it always rains on weekends is not a specific, real thing. If law of diminishing marginal utility is a specific, real thing, then keep. I have no idea what it is and I can’t deduce a definition from its parts. If I wanted to know the meaning, the only way I could would be to look up the term, not the parts. —Stephen 18:46, 18 May 2009 (UTC)
I am trying to understand your interpretation of or replacement ‎for WT:CFI. As‎ I understand it, no "specific, real thing" unfamiliar to you (presumably limited to the attestable) should be excluded. I assume that for "you" we can substitute "any person". What would be the status of items not real and/or not specific?
In any event, I cannot find this in WT:CFI and consequently take this to be a proposed replacement therefor. I look forward to BP discussion of this at your earliest convenience. DCDuring TALK 21:13, 18 May 2009 (UTC)
Which parts? [[law]]? [[diminishing marginal utility]]? [[marginal utility]]? [[marginal]]? utility? The set of concepts are elementary parts of economics that make little sense without the whole apparatus. IOW, encyclopedic. I could see an entry for [[marginal utility]], but the others seem to be of no utility. DCDuring TALK 21:29, 18 May 2009 (UTC)
Do you think "diminishing marginal utility" is clear in what the utility of an item is diminishing with respect to? Maybe it's not, yet I'd rather have this law that that phrase alone, since "diminishing marginal utility" by itself, even if it is idiomatic, is superseded in significance by this law as statement of fact. This is what makes the opposite "increasing marginal utility" nonsensical. Those are not good grounds to keep, they are fuzzy concepts that make me worried to let this slip by. I think it's better to err on the side of caution and keep what our gut says is right. Keep the law as used in economics rather than nonsensical antonyms. On the other hand, I'm not entirely convinced we have to keep any of it, and I'm not particularly fond of lemmings. DAVilla 04:47, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
I think even marginal utility is somewhat suspect, but it affords the opportunity to provides links to the encyclopedic discussion that is required and clarify the sense of marginal involved. This RfV is just about the five-word headword, which had seemed so OTT that I would have been inclined to delete it on sight at Transwiki. This is not exactly widespread. The RfV'd term does not appear in COCA; "diminishing marginal utility" appears once. marginal utility appears 10 times, only 4 of which are academic. DCDuring TALK 16:55, 30 May 2009 (UTC)


This is not a suffix; it is/should be covered at dimensional. DCDuring TALK 15:49, 13 May 2009 (UTC)

More examples in an ongoing discussion at WT:TR#-footed. Equinox 16:12, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
No, it's a combining form. — Paul G 15:44, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

If we delete such things, they should redirect imo.—msh210 17:16, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

I don't think so. There are just too many, and if you search for "-blah" you will find "blah" in the suggested results below anyway. Equinox 23:20, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
The redirect doesn't bother me, but it's not a suffix, so delete. Mglovesfun 23:36, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep It is not a suffix, but it is a combining form. It allows the formation of terms such as three-dimensional and n-dimensional. —This comment was unsigned.
Should we have all attestable combining forms, eg year- in "year-old", -year in "five-year plan", and -year- in "one-year-old child? Because hyphens are often recommended to clarify the interpretation of compounds in attributive use, almost all nouns, most adjectives, and many adverbs would probably have attestable use for combining forms. This could be the opportunity we've been waiting for: hundreds of thousands of potential entries. DCDuring TALK 16:09, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep -dimensional. Should also have -year-old, but not year-, -year-, or -year. —Stephen 18:34, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

in front of

Sense "facing (someone)": I'm not convinced that this sense is any different from "in the presence of" — at least, the examples suggest they are identical in meaning. If I am in front of a large group of people, I needn't actually be facing them — I could have my back to them — but I am still in their presence. — Paul G 15:38, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

I agree that the definition was no good, but I changed it because I think "in the presence of" doesn't cover the implication of being the antonym of behind (as regards the 3rd def, I may be wrong but I was taught before can't be used in expressions like "in front of the house"). --Duncan 16:23, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. good rewrite, except the example sentence should be moved - consider "in front of the hotel/theatre/cinema" (the hotel/theatre/cinema doesn't really have a presence). A front door/back door--Jackofclubs 19:03, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
You're right. I changed the example sentence as well. --Duncan 20:52, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

Good fix, but now how is the third sense any different from the first one? — Paul G 09:09, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

As I was saying, I may be wrong, but according to what I was taught the "before" in the third def implies a queue, a sequence of events etc, so that you couldn't say "Both parties met before the castle [...]". But I admit that (even if I'm right) I'm not certain whether this would warrant the third def, or whether it's covered by the first one. --Duncan 10:00, 28 May 2009 (UTC)
I have found a total of four senses: "ahead of" (queue), "outside the entrance of" (pace Jackofclubs), "in the presence of", and "facing" (a crowd, a mirror, a piece of equipment, a desk) from MWOnline and RHU. If you are "sitting in front of the window", does that mean you are not looking out the window? I'm not sure that even these four senses cover everything common. DCDuring TALK 01:09, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Re: "If you are "sitting in front of the window", does that mean you are not looking out the window?": I don't think it means that, no. At least, not always. google books:"sitting in front of the window looking" gives context for six hits (out of seven), and in all of them, the person is in fact looking out. —RuakhTALK 02:09, 29 June 2009 (UTC)


Compare with dog- and -dimensional above. Not a suffix, just a combining form. In fact surely overridden is not over suffixed with -ridden, but the other way around! So delete Mglovesfun 23:41, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

This is a strange one. Look at bedridden#Etymology for what I think is a singular case. Words like priest-ridden, angst-ridden, guilt-ridden, hag-ridden, pest-ridden, and war-ridden clearly differ from overridden. I'm not sure that ridden properly conveys the meaning. DCDuring TALK 00:26, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
The same goes for overblown and flyblown, for example. I don't think we need the hyphenated-suffix entry just because the suffix can have more than one meaning. Equinox 21:27, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
Are you sure we shouldn't add ridden-, as in ridden-over? Haven't found any examples of -ridden- -- yet. DCDuring TALK 21:40, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
I don't think we need any of these things! But if "ridden-over" means anything in itself, and isn't just a hyphenated way to describe something over which somebody has ridden (like a bridge!), then tell me; as you see, we don't have an entry. Equinox 22:00, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps were "to ride over" to be deemed as meeting WT:CFI. The time-wasting aspects of including true entries for combining forms (in the overwhelming majority of cases) seems clear. I could imagine the case for entry where the combining form was currently or recently productive and the unhyphenated (stand-alone) term was not in current or recent use in the same sense. DCDuring TALK 23:22, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
I've added ridden#Adjective which is sometimes used outside of combing forms in the same sense as it is in combining forms. DCDuring TALK 21:40, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep -ridden, either as a defined entry or as a redirect. —Stephen 18:30, 18 May 2009 (UTC)
If it's a separate form, it requires a separate entry. bd2412 T 07:07, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep. I've seen flea-ridden but never flea ridden or flearidden. bd2412 T 07:07, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

Kept Removed the "past tense" definition, kept the second one. --Jackofclubs 15:49, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Uncle Scrooge

Disney character; unlike Mickey Mouse, very unlikely to have any generic sense. Equinox 14:43, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

Found cites and corrected the definition. Michael Z. 2009-05-16 16:43 z
New sense looks fairly promising, despite a couple of citations with quotation marks, but the 1977 cite refers to an "Uncle Scrooge Money Bin" (a specific thing from the cartoon series, not something belonging to a "rich miser"), so perhaps that one should go. Equinox 18:46, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
Move it to the citations page rather than just deleting. Even if it is not a perfectly qualifying citation for CFI, it may demonstrate how the term is used or contribute to the history of its adoption (or that of another term). You'll notice that in Schraeder 2005, it appears once in quotation marks, but later without, demonstrating that the author introduces it self-consciously, but then just uses it. In the “Money Bin” citation I would argue that Uncle Scrooge is used to introduce the Money Bin, so readers who don't understand the direct reference to the second term would still get the gist of it from the mention of the first. Also notable is that the very first citation may be a transcription of speech. Michael Z. 2009-05-16 22:19 z
Well, I won't kick up a fuss about the one citation. Closing my own RFD, because the newly created sense seems dictionary-worthy. Equinox 22:22, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. Good rewrite--Jackofclubs 18:57, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
Thanks! Michael Z. 2009-05-16 22:19 z
Keep as rewritten and cited. --Dmol 21:21, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
This is good too (okay, excellent), but what's wrong with the original definition? (edit:) Why not keep that as well? DAVilla 18:58, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Good question. I don't know if it is possible to find citations which meet CFI's requirement for attributive use and also support a definition of Uncle Scrooge as the cartoon duck. The subject sounds encyclopedic and non-lexicographical to me. In my opinion, the etymology and Wikipedia link already have all the encyclopedic details we need. But only the quotations will tell for sure.
Should we RfV all of the Disney characters for consistency? Michael Z. 2009-05-21 14:47 z
I think they would all pass, that is, the major characters that we already include. I don't know what to make of attributive use, but it is cited according to both that and the proposed criterion of metaphoric use as well. DAVilla 03:36, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Unstruck after adding back original sense. Keep. DAVilla 03:36, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Huh? There are no quotations concerning cartoon ducks. Michael Z. 2009-05-26 04:40 z
What good would that do? Do you really doubt this is what it means when not in metaphor? The only question is if it's "noteworthy" enough to keep, in the sense that it has entered the lexicon. Clearly it has. DAVilla 04:53, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
Noteworthiness doesn't enter into WT:CFI#Names of specific entities. It says “attributively, with a widely understood meaning,” which describes sense 2, not 1. Barack Obama is noteworthy too, but the person and and the duck don't belong in the dictionary. Michael Z. 2009-05-27 03:27 z
Thank you for stating the complete obvious. I though that a term entering the lexicon would be a compelling reason to include it, but you've just forged a rock solid rationale on what must be the most contested, ambiguous, and outdated section of CFI. I feel it almost a complete waste to make arguments that aren't taken into consideration in the slightest, other than to be dismissed out of hand. You position I will grant you is totally consistent with itelf, but not consistent with the fact that there are a great number of specific people, characters, and the like on Wiktionary already. If you disagree with this then please vote against my proposal and be done with it. Oh, and you might have to ignore Google Book hits like "Barack Obama supporter" and "Uncle Scrooge comic book". I'm not sure why you might find those sorts of quotations the least bit interesting, but they do meet the holy criterion of CFI section 32 verse 1. DAVilla 07:27, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
The last two are direct references to the specific entities. An Uncle Scrooge comic book is a comic book about Uncle Scrooge. It is a mention of the actual (fictional) duck, not the use of a word stemming from the duck's name; it's as useful for CFI as “Uncle Scrooge said ‘quack.’” A person being mentioned, even a lot, is not the same as their name “entering the lexicon,” that is becoming a word in the language. Michael Z. 2009-05-30 02:31 z
I agree completely (and not being sarcastic as I partly was above). Although I believe Uncle Scrooge has entered the lexicon, the quotation of "Uncle Scrooge comic book" does not support that assertion. It does however illustrate the literal sense that you disputed, and attributively so, where by attributive I mean in the grammatical sense of modifying a noun. I don't think this is a very good way to judge terms, hence the vote. If you can exemplify another use of attributive then by all means suggest that instead. The examples we have though are not applicable to the types of information we do include. As noted elsewhere, Empire State Building was given as an example of what we do not include until we voted to keep it after all, and you should also know that there are many types of fictional characters included besides just Disney. DAVilla 01:18, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
I certainly do know. That guideline needs clarification, but perhaps not any substantial change (at least if we can agree on what it means). Also, the examples aren't helping with this.
“A name should be included if it is used attributively, with a widely understood meaning.” I believe this means something like “with a widely understood meaning, independent of its referent.” I think it is often applied this way. Does that sum it up? Is that an improved wording? Michael Z. 2009-05-31 04:19 z


Fictional universe? DCDuring TALK 23:09, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Merge into Concordance:A Clockwork Orange, which already has the singular. —RuakhTALK 15:40, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
I'd tend to agree. One or two of the Clockwork Orange words have gained currency outside of that one work, but not this one. Subjectively, I see I don't consider Burgess as significant as Joyce and Shakespeare when it comes to nonces. Equinox 19:03, 22 May 2009 (UTC)


rfd-sense: (in conjunction with verb be) In existence or in this world; mention of unspecified location, somewhere.

there is something amiss.

This doesn't seem right. Other dictionaries call this kind of usage a pronoun, which seems better to me. See there#Pronoun. DCDuring TALK 18:06, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Not really a pronoun, either. I'd lean towards calling it a preposed adverb. Consider:
There is something I'd like to say.
In the letter is something I'd like to say.
This helps (a little) to show that there is not functioning as the subject in the first example. It's merely a sentence order inversion from:
Something I'd like to say is there.
--EncycloPetey 18:40, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
It definitely originates as a preposed adverb, as you say, but its current usage seems to me to have spread out a bit. Firstly, there's certainly been semantic bleaching (consider e.g. "There's something odd here" — or for that matter, "In the letter there's something I'd like to say"); secondly, it's used in cases where I think any other preposed adverb would sound odd (consider e.g. "I expected there to be a problem", "He demanded there be an inquiry"); thirdly, many speakers have granted it singular status regardless of its complement (e.g., "there was an apple and a clock on the table"), and in AAVE it can sometimes (always?) be replaced with "it" (e.g., "people tell me it ain't no way", which I heard on the street last night). —RuakhTALK 18:54, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
And all of that can be explained by adverbial status, yes? The additional sentences you've given are still inversion of normal sentence order ("I expected there to be a problem." vs "I expected a problem to be there.") Contraction with the verb is not limited to one part of speech: "The boy's insane!" (noun); "Larry's gone home." (proper noun); "He's not here." (pronoun); "Now's the time to act." (adverb); "Clean's better than dirty" (adjective); "Never again's my motto." (phrase).
The question of "always singular" can be interpreted as "invariant because it's an adverb". Incorrect verb agreement is not limited to this expression, as I often hear manglings such as "We was late," or "None of you walk away now!" Using a singular verb when a plural form is traditionally used is a general phenomenon independent of the use of there. --EncycloPetey 23:44, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
So you would argue that in each of the following pairs, both versions are equally acceptable (or equally unacceptable, in the case of the last one)? :
  • There's something odd here. vs. Here's something odd there.
  • I expected there to be a problem. vs. I expected here to be a problem.
  • He demanded there be an inquiry. vs. He demanded here be an inquiry.
  • [pointing at a photograph] There's us. vs. We's right there.
If so, I suspect that you and I must spend time with very different sorts of people. (Note: I'm not specifically saying that it's not an adverb; I don't know for sure. It seems almost meaningless to apply terms like "adverb" and "pronoun" to a single use of a given grammatical word, when no other word shares its grammar. What I am saying is that I think that for many speakers of Standard American English, this usage is simply an expletive subject with delayed semantic subject, just like "it" in "It's well known that the sky is blue." This makes it very tempting to label it a pronoun, since English's only other expletive subject is a pronoun, and it definitely feels more natural to classify a subject as a pronoun than as an adverb.)
RuakhTALK 00:22, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
If we permitted English words to be classified as "Particle", then that's where I'd prefer to see this go. Failing that, I prefer "adverb" (which is a very nebulous category) because it is so closely tied to the verb, and because the label of "Adverb" permits a broader range of functions than does "Pronoun". Oh, and yes, I have indeed heard people say "We's right there," or "There's us," although fortunately not so often now that I live in a different area. --EncycloPetey 01:17, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
I agree that "particle" would be best. And yes, I've also heard both "we's right there" and "there's us", but I really don't see how you can view them as equally (un)acceptable. To me "there's us" is semi-acceptable in some instances and completely acceptable, albeit informal, in others ("Who all is coming?" "Well, let's see … there's the Smiths … there's the Joneses … there's us, of course … and … um, I'm not sure who else."), whereas "we's right there" is always quite unacceptable. (If I were a prescriptivist, I think I'd call "there's us" something like "O.K. in colloquial speech", and "we's right there" something like "please retake kindergarten".) —RuakhTALK 01:25, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
So I've thought about it further, and I think you may be right that insofar as we can't use "particle", "adverb" is more accurate than "pronoun"; there's not a clear line between usages like "there you are", where "there" is clearly adverb-like (specifically, I think it's an intransitive preposition), and usages like "there's many books there", where it seems to have ventured off the worn path of any POS. I mean, these two uses are very different from each other, but you can devise a fairly continuous walk from "there you are" to "there’s the book I was reading" to "there's the book I was reading" to "there's a book I was reading" to "there's a book there" to "there's many books there", and it's really impossible to say where on this path it stopped being an adverb and started being a pronoun. Or rather, it's too possible: any step seems reasonable, but none seems convincing. —RuakhTALK 18:13, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Is "it" also a "preposed adverb" by this logic? Somehow the etymology seems more important than usage in this classification decision. And we seem to be in disagreement with prevailing lexicographic practice. DCDuring TALK 18:44, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm not really referring to the etymology, but rather to the entire range of current uses, which includes everything from original and obviously-adverbial (or whatever) uses to ???!!!-ial uses that, according to your comment below, cispondian dictionaries call pronominal and transpondian ones adverbial.
As I said above, usage doesn't really support any POS very well. There is no POS that exhibits this sort of behavior. AFAIK English has exactly two expletive subjects: it (otherwise a personal pronoun), and there (otherwise an adverb/adjective/preposition/something). Neither one's expletive use is really predictable from its non-expletive use; and this would hardly be the first time that words of two different parts of speech have overlapping grammar (cf. adjectives and attributive nouns).
Overall, I really hate our need to discretely identify a word's languages, parts of speech, etymologies, etc. These things are not always discrete.
I'm happy to follow cispondian dictionaries in including a pronoun sense — that's certainly more convenient, as it gives us more room in which to explain the range of uses — but I don't see why we can't also follow transpondian dictionaries in listing it as an adverb. ("In existence; see pronoun section below.")
RuakhTALK 19:45, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
That would be fine. I see that some "there [copula]" usage can have more than a hint of adverbial "placeness". Longmans DCE strikes me as a leader in grammar and usage presentation in a dictionary. That they choose to have the pronoun PoS is meaningful and makes it less of a cis-/trans- thing. DCDuring TALK 20:36, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Longman's also has an "in existence" sense under adverb, with these three clearly-non-pronoun example sentences:
The chance was there, but I didn't take it.
The countryside is there for everyone to enjoy.
Three months after the operation, the pain was still there.
These share the semantic bleaching, but not the grammar, of the "there is ___" uses.
RuakhTALK 20:45, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
It wouldn't have occurred to me to try to call those usages pronominal, related though they are semantically. They seem to me to behave more like most normal, boring adverbs. DCDuring TALK 22:31, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
I believe you've mis-read Ruakh's comments. Those instances are marked as "adverb" in Longman. --EncycloPetey 17:35, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Longmans is a leader, yes, but that does not mean that they always make the best choices. I've been trying to decide why the "semantic coloring" argument does sit well with me, and have finally figured out why. Consider the reversibility / non-reversibility of the following parallel constructions:
* "There is an old house on the hill." / "An old house on the hill is there."
* "It is an old house on the hill." / "An old house on the hill is it."
* "Green Gables is an old house on the hill." / "An old house on the hill is Green Gables."
* "Decaying is an old house on the hill." / "An old house on the hill is decaying."
* "Scary is an old house on the hill." / "An old house on the hill is scary."
The first of each pair only sounds right for the first three. The fourth pair's first half sounds odd, and in the fifth pair, the first half of that pair has grammar that would only be found in a fortune cookie. So, an adjective or participle doesn't work for reversibility. In similar fashion, the latter half of the second and third pairs sound wrong. Neither a pronoun nor adjective works properly in the predicate position.
The question, then, is whether the first pair is a reversal in which the meaning is truly preserved, or whether there truly is a shift in the meaning and/or emphasis. I haven't fully decided how I come down on that issue. I can see both as having the same meaning, but perhaps not. Sometimes the second half of the first pair sounds normal, but it can also come out like Yoda-speak. It does seem a bit of an archaic form to me. --EncycloPetey 17:33, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm not sure that I understand, but I'd like to. I think I agree with your readings of the naturalness of all of the sentences above. As to "there": to me the "place" senses could be considered adverbial in all cases. The usages that don't seem to fit are most clearly seen in: "There is a certain something about him that I really like." There_(!!!) could be pointing involved, but not plausibly. "Something there is that doesn't love a wall."
In some of the real cases involving what I consider the quasi-pronominal usage of "there", ambiguity remains because the sentences can be read with a "place" sense. But many cases have left behind even the most virtual kind of spatiality.
In "There is an old house on the hill.", "there" could be about "place", but it is more likely about existence. For it to be about place, it would need extra stress on "there". Then it might be equivalent to "An old house on the hill is there.", which doesn't seem very natural unless "there" is accompanied by physical pointing or is read as equivalent to "An old house-on-the-hill is there." (or "An old-house-on-the-hill is there.") DCDuring TALK 19:12, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Could there have been a pondian cleavage in labeling this. Tellingly, Cambridge American calls it a pronoun; Cambridge Advanced Learners shows the same usage as adverb. Oxford shows adverb. Longmans shows pronoun, as does Collins. Webster's 1913 shows both, but is reticent about calling it a pronoun as was Webster's 1828. Webster's 1828 expresses a somewhat reluctant acceptance of this "meaningless" usage. The other American dictionaries show pronoun, if they cover it (as WNW does not). I suppose that the label doesn't much matter, but keeping it an adverb gives more weight to etymology and Chaucerian usage than to the nature of current usage. DCDuring TALK 19:36, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

phrasal preposition

SoP.—msh210 17:27, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

See also talk:phrasal preposition.—msh210 18:44, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

I am inclined to the delete position. Although the term locuzione preposizionale exists in Italian, it is quite rare and I only found it by researching it. All the translations are best translated as two words phrasal preposition rather than the single term. SemperBlotto 07:27, 28 May 2009 (UTC)
locution prépositive, however, is very common in French (Because french dictionary define strictly graphic words, we are obsessive what is a word and was is a "locution") and I'd be inclined to say it's not SoP, but it certainly is in English. Circeus 22:53, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Needs a better definition, but keep. Hardly anyone will understand what it means from the separate words. —Stephen 19:48, 28 May 2009 (UTC)
Why isn't this called a "compound preposition" in analogy to compound noun? (And why are we missing the latter when we do have compound word?) Easily confused with prepositional phrase as well, which is no less SoP in my opinion. I think it's safer to keep. DAVilla 05:13, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete. As DAVilla almost points out, the term compound preposition exists as well, with the same meaning (and, in fact, is several times as common). If phrasal preposition were a term of art that had driven out other potential synonyms, then perhaps it would be worth including; but as it is, it seems to be just one SOP way to express this idea. (Of course, I welcome any contrary evidence that would force me to reconsider.) However, we do need to improve our entry for phrasal. —RuakhTALK 17:55, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Sense now added to [[phrasal]].—msh210 20:03, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Tend to say keep; rare yes but it does exist. Mglovesfun 09:27, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

X circles around

See comments at #X one's Y off. Equinox 17:34, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

As below, we don't allow "X" to act as a filler in article titles, do we? I sort of think there's some merit in it, but not much. I'm in favour of a delete but it does highlight problems with have with article titles. Mglovesfun 09:20, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
delete in this form. Maybe move to "circles around"? --Diuturno 07:01, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete Do we need a bin to store these for a time when we get any idea how to handle them? WikiGrammar? A project that could dispense with our almost entire lexical focus could run rings around a dictionary when it came to these. DCDuring TALK 11:07, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Moved to circles around, but could be tweaked. I've seen run circles around and run rings around too. --Jackofclubs 14:36, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

  • Looking at "[Verb] circles around" at COCA, only about half of the usage was figurative. Of the figurative usage more than 80% involved forms of "run". I propose that we put the citations of the other verbs used with "circles around" onto the citations page and/or show the other common verb uses without wikilinks under Related terms and move to run circles around. DCDuring TALK 15:34, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
    I like. It would certainly make the entry word more readable (I couldn't tell what this was about until I clicked through to the entry and read the definition). Other common phrases could be listed as alternative forms, and have form-of entries linking here. Michael Z. 2009-06-20 15:51 z

I'll see your X and raise you Y

See comments at #X one's Y off. (This one also has some old discussion on its talk page.) Equinox 17:36, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Keep The second snowclone-related definition puts it firmly into the realm of idioms. Circeus 22:55, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Delete, unless we want to add a policy that allows X and Y in the titles of articles. Although I do see the point that some of these merit an article, but it's not easy to come up with a title for them. Mglovesfun 09:29, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Keep. Idiomatic phrase. kwami 22:31, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
"I'll see your X and raise you Y" is not an idiomatic phrase and I doubt anybody has ever said it. You might have an argument for "I'll see your", or for "and raise you", but not for this X-Y entry. Equinox 22:41, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
To the keep people, what do you think about the inclusion of X and Y in the title? If anything, it makes me laugh. Even something like I'll see your $100 and raise you $200 isn't exactly idiomatic, is it? This is more like a full sentence than a 'part of speech'. Mglovesfun 19:17, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
AFAIK, the only "variables" that we seem to have accepted in headwords are "one", "someone", "something", and "somebody" and forms thereof (possessive, plural, reflexive). I think it would be a WT:BP matter to raise (again). Including all kinds of formulas in a wiki supposed to be of use to a general population seems over the top. It will not prevent contributors from adding particular instantiations of the formula.
I continue to believe that the approaches of including highest-frequency instantiations of such formulas as headwords, as red-linked or unlinked derived terms, and/or as usage examples or in quotations would give users full accessible benefit of our understanding of the these expressions without requiring users to learn something highly specific to our site. DCDuring TALK 19:37, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Discussion seems to have died. I still think this should be decomposed to extra senses at see and raise (if they're not already present). Equinox 15:10, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
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Perhaps we should start a BP discussion (or find the old one!!!) about the "X" and "Y" business. I just looked at COCA and couldn't find instantiation there of the formula that occurred twice. Your immediately preceding suggestion is certainly essential. Above you had made a suggestion about adding the collocations "I'll see your" and "and raise you". We have similar things entered as phrases, but they mostly look like things to be cleaned out to me. I'd be happy to hear reasons why they ought to be in here, especially since they would make good use of the "Phrase" heading which I have been converting to other PoS headers in some fairly obvious cases in English. Is that another BP topic>?
Another thought: Move to I'll see you and raise you, which looks quite attestable. The X and Y usage could appear in a usage note or as unwikilinked alternative forms. DCDuring TALK 16:04, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

call out

rfd-sense: To call (a professional) for a site/home visit. Seems quite SoP compared to other senses. DCDuring TALK 19:56, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Merge with #2, it seems to be a specific case of #2, so it does exist but they can easily be merged. Plus, why a professional? Surely you can all anyone out without them being professional. Mglovesfun 09:23, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
Merge might be good. DAVilla 04:38, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
If it can be used intransitively then I think it's fine, but may not be specific to a professional as Mglovesfun says. DAVilla 04:38, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

June 2009

levered firm

If you know what a firm is and you know about "lever" or leverage, you would know this. Main sense of firm#Noun. Main business sense of lever#Verb. DCDuring TALK 00:47, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

I know what a firm is and I know lever and leverage. Let me guess: a company that has special controls (handles, levers)? Or a company that has special powers, such as a department for lobbying Washington (to exercise leverage)? It’s hard to think of a reasonable definition, and impossible to know if one of my wild guesses is right without looking at the proper definition. —Stephen 16:01, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Comment. Logically, "levered firm" does not seem to fit our definition for "lever"; it seems to mean basically "levering firm". I'm guessing that the correct action is to delete [[levered firm]] and add the correct adjective sense to [[levered]] — unlike Stephen, I think it's quite likely that "levered firm" means "firm that is levered", for some sense of "levered" that we don't have — but as I'm not familiar with any of these, I can't say for sure. —RuakhTALK 19:55, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
In the US the verb leverage#Verb has exactly the meaning in the form I am familiar with. I think that lever#Verb has a synonymous sense, perhaps more non-US, but I haven't put in the time to confirm. Both "leveraged firm" and "levered firm" have more than 400 raw b.g.c. hits, "leveraged" being a bit more common. With other appropriate financial terms "leveraged" is much more common. We are the only OneLook dictionary with this term, but they also don't have the right sense of "lever", except for one invisible specialized investor glossary. About 20 OneLook glossaries have the right sense of "leverage" (usually as a noun). Some regular dictionaries, too (sometimes the verb). DCDuring TALK 21:18, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
If we’re the only one, that makes us superior. I can’t figure out what it means unless I look it up somewhere, which is something that I have not done yet. —Stephen 22:26, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't know. google books:"firm is|was levered" suggests that this is SOP; but until we've actually defined the Ps, I don't feel comfortable deleting their S. I guess my vote is to merge into [[levered]]. No deletion of "levered firm" without representation at "levered"! :-P   —RuakhTALK 13:20, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
One of the most productive things about compound entries and the RfD process is that they compel us SoPers to validate our assertions by improving the definitions of the components, whatever the outcome of the RfD. DCDuring TALK 14:20, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
I agree, and to me it's not obvious that the firm is levering itself. Maybe it's just unfamiliarity with the topic, but it feels to me like this may be worth keeping. DAVilla 16:19, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

coal mine

Defined as "A mine from which coal is mined." Classic sum-of-parts entry. --EncycloPetey 13:51, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete and move definition to coalmine, I suppose. Unlike gold mine and (apparently) salt mine, this has no figurative sense. Equinox 14:17, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Improve the definition and keep. Not all coal mines are mines. Good dictionaries (including as the Random House) have it and so should we. My Random House has coal mine, but not coalmine. I don’t think coalmine is a common American spelling. —Stephen 15:55, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Which coal mines aren't mines? --EncycloPetey 22:55, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
coal mine is 50 times more common than coalmine on COCA, but the 5 appearances of "coalmine" would make it attestable in the US.
  • Move to RfV. I'd be interested to find any attestable figurative use of "coal mine".
There's an extra complication in the word "mine". When most people say "mine", they mean an underground mine. An open-pit mine requires the extra qualification (except where there is a specific referent individual or class). DCDuring TALK 16:21, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Is that relevant here? All coal mines I've ever seen (even in film) are underground mines. Both the Welsh and Appalachian coal mines are subterranean. Even if some of them are above ground, wouldn't it still be a mine for coal, and thus sum of parts? --EncycloPetey 22:55, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep. Many (most?) of the big coal mines in Australia are open cut, which means that the synonyms colliery, meaning only an underground mine, is incorrect in this instance. --Dmol 00:05, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
That just means the synonym is wrong. An open-cut mine is still a mine. It's not a reason to keep, is it? Equinox 00:09, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
No. I didn't mean to introduce a red herring. I have added an "especially" clause at mine: "especially underground" that addresses the complication at the appropriate place, I think.
The reason to move this to RfV is to allow for the possibility that there is a sense of "coal mine" that is analogous to the figurative senses of gold mine and salt mine that justify their inclusion. It seems to me that it might exist even though I can't recollect it now and may never have been exposed to it. It might be worth 30+ days in RfV to determine it. DCDuring TALK 01:39, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep. The first line of WT:CFI says "all words in all languages]], and coalmine is definitely a word, but since it's the alternative spelling of coal mine then that would become a red link, rendering coalmine useless. Also, it seems silly to delete the one that's 50 times more common the the other one just because it has a space in the middle. Weird logic, I know, but I can't seem to pick a hole in the argument. Mglovesfun 21:57, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
The entry for [[coalmine]] could say "Alternative spelling of [[coal]] [[mine]]". DCDuring TALK 00:26, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
It isn't current practice, but I could definitely support it. DAVilla 16:12, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Hmm, I think that's a fine idea. Equinox 15:09, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
That little thing is now done. I'd been doing similar things on Ullman's "Missing" pages, to prevent entries that probably wouldn't meet CFI. Non-English entries often have wikilinks for terms the translators wish were entries in English to support translation back into their language. Some seem to me to be non-starters under WT:CFI, some more debatable. I try to leave the debatable ones alone.
Do such things benefit from a "+" or similar indication that the components are separate wikilinks? I think so. DCDuring TALK 15:40, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

ground beef

SoP.—msh210 21:40, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

An important food item, keep. Not so SoP as earth poultry or air pork. —Stephen 22:22, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete. Here it's called minced beef. In either case, it's clearly beef that has been ground (minced); ground chicken for example is easily attestable but equally unnecessary. The "air pork" argument, although it sounds delicious, relies on the reader not having the common sense to work out which sense of "ground" could apply to beef; see WT:CFI section that reads "With such clearly wrong interpretations weeded out..." Equinox 22:31, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete, as above. Mglovesfun 22:06, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete Important items have articles in Wikipedia. Attested terms have entries here. Michael Z. 2009-06-03 23:33 z
Not without lexicographic support: Collins and WordNet. Meat is not actually ground by almost any definition of ground. Grinding is usually performed on frangible materials and yields a powder or small particles, as the primary sense of grind in most dictionaries suggests. (Try putting meat on a grindstone or a bench grinder.) The applicable sense seems to have something to do with the crank-like handle (organ-grinder, meat-grinder, grinding of hips). Nowadays meat-grinders cannot be assumed to be part of most Wiktionary users' experience. By the hereby created "misnomer principle", then, this might warrant an entry. I could be persuaded by a sense at grind that applied to "meat" and also something not called "meat". DCDuring TALK 00:05, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Misnomer or not, if this is true of all meats, then ground certainly does have a definition as it applies to beef. DAVilla 16:09, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Weak keep. Equinox makes a good point about ground chicken, but ground beef has common grammatical uses that are hard to find for other ground meat products. For example, in the phrase ground beef patty (which has over 400 b.g.c hits), the term ground beef is a modifier of patty. This is not a patty that has been ground, so we don't have a double adjective. Rather, the combination ground beef is a single modifier, and as such I lean towards keeping this term. --EncycloPetey 02:18, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
That logic applies also to #chocolate_chunk cookie. (You may want to weigh in there, EP: I see you haven't.) I think it also applies to any other common, two-word collocation where the second word is a noun and the first is a modifying noun or an adjective. We don't allow all common collocations, of course. Or we don't, though maybe not "of course". Or we don't AFAIK, anyway. Examples: pizza party reveler, grape martini drinking, blighted house resident, non-electric typewriter user.—msh210 17:56, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
FWIW, the French word is viande hachée (=ground meat), which is SoP (very clearly: it's almost always beef, but not always), but should be includable nonetheless, in my opinion, because it's felt as a set phrase (as a kind of meat). Lmaltier 20:20, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
It would depend on one's definition of "set phrase", I think. The one I like, because it seems to be amenable to falsification, is a phrase that passes the "in between" test (See WT:IDIOM. Can one insert adjectives or other words in between the components? In this case one could (raw, buffalo, kangaroo, squirrel, etc). By which alternative criteria would this be a set phrase? DCDuring TALK 23:36, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
My criterion (for viande hachée) was subjective. I probably consider that something is a set phrase when you don't combine terms in your mind when you use it: it's stored in the brain as a whole, just like a single word. Words can be inserted between the components, but this does not change my feeling. For ground beef, I don't know. Lmaltier 20:30, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Definitely it's a set phrase in my mind. I try not to rely on that because the feeling isn't attestable, but I absolutely could not see going against this one. Maybe the fancy dress test is a good enough rationale to keep? DAVilla 16:09, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Weak keep Ground beef doesn't actually look like it's been ground. If you say "ground rock" or "ground vegetable", the image IS NOT the same as that of "minced beef", which is 100% synonymous with "ground beef". Circeus 01:21, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep per EP and Circeus. Incidentally (or maybe even of direct importance), the U.S. Food & Drug Administration has some fairly tight regulations as to what may be sold under the name "ground beef": "(a) "Chopped Beef" or "Ground Beef" shall consist of chopped fresh and/or frozen beef with or without seasoning and without the addition of beef fat as such, shall not contain more than 30 percent fat, and shall not contain added water, phosphates, binders, or extenders. When beef cheek meat (trimmed beef cheeks) is used in the preparation of chopped or ground beef, the amount of such cheek meat shall be limited to 25 percent; and if in excess of natural proportions, its presence shall be declared on the label, in the ingredient statement required by Sec. 317.2 of this subchapter, if any, and otherwise contiguous to the name of the product." This definition is somewhat different from the FDA definition of "hamburger". bd2412 T 21:50, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep At the very least it is like semisweet chocolate with a strong regulatory definition per BD2412. It also seems to use an idiosyncratic sense of "grind"/"ground".
I am troubled by the implication of the regulatory-definition argument that we should possibly have multiple definitions for "ground beef", one for every (English-speaking ?) regulatory authority. Is there a way we could genericize the process of linking users to the appropriate jurisdictional definitions or sources for them without risking cluttering our entries with 10 or more external links. DCDuring TALK 23:18, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes, that's definitely troubling. Think of the number of legal texts where "an X is defined as <some hyper-specific description>". Equinox 23:21, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
The handling of legal definitions should be a Beer Parlor topic. bd2412 T 23:35, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
And now it is; on that discussion's basis, I hereby change "SoP" to "keep".—msh210 00:29, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Kept.​—msh210 20:30, 8 July 2009 (UTC)


Despite my best effort, I cannot seem to find any use of this word anywhere outside of dictionaries. Even the TLFi only manages to describe it via its appearances in dictionaries (compare the equally technical and also fairly rare abarticulaire). Circeus 03:26, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

I actually never knew this! You're right, I can't find anything outside of dictionaries but it's attestable in a lot of notable dictionaries. Sort of seems odd to delete it, but I don't want to say keep either, so I'll say I don't have a clue. Mglovesfun 22:03, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Oh, there seems to be quite a few more of these than we'd like to admit. Right after this I came across ablégation, which is in a similar situation. It's originally given as a roman legal term (from ablegatio), but whether there ever was a right of the paterfamilias to banish a family member looks a but dubious to me (and it's only found in a few generic encyclopedias/dictionaries, not in any actual antiquity-related works...), then it became the "status of being an ablegate", which is even more strange word formation to me Circeus 02:28, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
4 uses found in Google Books, from 1889 to 2008. Fairly rare indeed, but the word does exist! abiétine is also used as a noun (it's much less rare as a noun).
  • Chimie, inorganique et organique; botanique; zoologie: Notes servant à la préparation de l'examen du premier doctorat, de Lewis Nicholas Worthington - 1889 - 438 pages : (...) colophane) est composée d'une résine neutre abiétine et plusieurs résines acides : l'acide (...)
  • Khudozhestvennyi︠a︡ sokrovishcha Rossīi, Alexandre Benois, Adrian Viktorovich Prakhov, Imperatorskoe obshchestvo pooshchrenīi︠a︡ khudozhestv (Russia) - 1905 : Peinture sur une planche de bois (abiétin?) d'une extrême finesse (0,08 m.).
  • Revue de mycologie‎ - Page 125, de Laboratoire de cryptogamie (Muséum national d'histoire naturelle) - 1953 : Chanterelles abiétines de montagne, à la Vespérale.
  • La pierre à boire‎ - Page 38, de Gérard Laplace - 2008 - 279 pages : Le premier, il pleut sur les aspérités abiétines sans discontinuer.

Lmaltier 13:51, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

As a noun, it's possibly a typo for "abiétinée" (or related), which is either an archaic term for abiétacée or related to a subgeneric rank. Circeus 14:44, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
No, it's not a typo for abiétinée. Lmaltier 14:57, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes, I forgot about another technical meaning: "a resin obtained from turpentine". Circeus 16:03, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

si vivo

Meaning is strictly sum of parts: "if" + "I live", to mean "if I live". --EncycloPetey 13:58, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete, SoP. Mglovesfun 22:05, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Hard to think of a clearer case than this one TBH, apart from it not being in English. Mglovesfun 21:53, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted --EncycloPetey 18:01, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

milk it

See Wiktionary:Requests for cleanup#milk it
This is just the verb to milk with a pronoun at the end, compare with tough it out which we've already deleted (tough out + it). Mglovesfun 11:12, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Judging from the number of these, it seems as if there is a pattern of converting normally transitive senses of verbs to effectively intransitive senses by adding "it". At least sometimes the "it" seems more like a grammatical place-filler (expletive) or an extra syllable for emphasis or speech rhythm than a real pronoun with a specific referent. I wonder what the modern grammar books say. DCDuring TALK 14:29, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
But, as defined and exemplified, the "it" seems to have clear referents in preceding clauses and is an ordinary pronoun. That would seem to make this just a use of milk, as nom says. DCDuring TALK 21:25, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
At least tough it out didn't have a referent (my basis for keep). I can't imagine a case of milk it where the it would not be present, at least vaguely in some form. Delete unless I see otherwise. DAVilla 15:53, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ninja baby

nonsense Jcwf 14:11, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

damn and blast

damn your ass

These are nothing more than their components, but might be good to illustrate in usage examples or quotes at damn, blast, and/or ass. DCDuring TALK 17:53, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Actually, I think damn and blast (and perhaps a couple of others, like bugger and blast) is idiomatic. AFAIK, nobody would say "blast and damn" nor "damn and shit". Equinox 19:32, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
damn and blast is about 50% more frequent at b.g.c. than blast and damn. "blast and bugger" is about as frequent as "bugger and blast". DCDuring TALK 15:18, 6 June 2009 (UTC)


Possibly a bad entry. Was marked for a speedy delete by Rising Sun along with other supposedly French plurals that had no lemma entry and had been added by Kennebot2. However a quick Google showed among the chaff enough hits to suggest that cussion might be in French usage, tho probably not as a word sanctioned by the Academy. Looks like it would be a back formation from percussion, if it is a valid entry and not a protologism or the like. No opinion myself as to whether it should be kept or deleted, I just wasn't comfortable with giving this one a speedy. — Carolina wren discussió 17:54, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Most hits are words such as percussions, discussions or répercussions. I found one site consistently using this "word" as an actual word: french.alibaba.com, but these uses are the result of some automatic translation, and they probably mean coussin. Lmaltier 20:15, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Supprimé --Jackofclubs 15:44, 10 June 2009 (UTC)


I don't believe this should be capitalized. RJFJR 19:59, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Printed works always capitalize Egyptologists no matter what. -- Prince Kassad 20:06, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Both spellings are used. We already had to study this word for fr.wiktionary (same request...) Lmaltier 20:22, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Keep. Widespread use. Why is this being challenged? DCDuring TALK 23:44, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Keep Checked four dictionaries—all capitalized. I can't find a single uncapitalized citation. Michael Z. 2009-06-06 14:33 z

What do we do about egyptologist? Add a usage note or delete it as unattested? RJFJR 14:59, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
Cite it, if you'd like. I think it is attestable, but uncommon. DCDuring TALK 15:12, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Keep per DCDuring. --Dan Polansky 21:42, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Keep In English, if not French, this is always capitalised, as is Egypt, Egyptology, etc - see the OED. I am also surprised that this is being challenged. egyptologist is as wrong as 'egypt' would be and should be deleted. Dougweller 12:05, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

For information, Webster gives egyptologist, with the mention usually capitalized. almost always capitalized would have been more accurate. An example of egyptologist: in www.brainyhistory.com: Auguste Edouard Mariette, French egyptologist, dug out Sphinx 12/16/42. Lmaltier 12:24, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
That appears to be (badly) written for the website, and not a quotation suitable for attestation in Wiktionary. I'll RfV the l.c. version of the word. Michael Z. 2009-06-11 12:38 z

Kept. DAVilla 15:46, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

go into overdrive

Sum of parts; already obvious from go + into + overdrive. Equinox 22:07, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete  Yup. Michael Z. 2009-06-05 23:09 z
Delete, I get quite annoyed by any phrase that starts with an auxillary verb since a bot created several thousand on these on the French Wiktionary, which it will take us years to clean up (start with fr:stick to the pan, yes that was once a verb on the French Wiktionary). Mglovesfun 19:43, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete I wonder if we would reduce the number of these entered at all if we actually had such common collocations in usage examples or, better, citations at one or more of the component words. In this case "overdrive" would be the choice, I think. Also, I've noticed that many common non-idiomatic collocations that get entered here are music or book titles or band names. DCDuring TALK 20:12, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Zap - this entry does not stick to the pan, as they say in France. --Jackofclubs 18:50, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

ar draws

RFD'd 18 years ago --Jackofclubs 07:26, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Sounds like a way for a Northerner to refer to her undergarments. Skimming Google Books suggests that it's real and should possibly be a synonym. Do we have anybody who knows Welsh? Equinox 23:03, 14 June 2009 (UTC)


Romanian section was RFD'd some time ago, but not listed here - the RFD reason was "rework entirely or remove" --Jackofclubs 07:42, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Strong keep, absolutely no reason for deletion. But yes, clean-up is definitely in order. —RuakhTALK 17:55, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep. How lazy lol... "I don't want to rework it, so I want to delete it". — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 14:30, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
^ in other words, this should be at WT:RFC if anything — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 14:32, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Kept, should never have been there. WT:RFC#am is where it should have been. Mglovesfun (talk) 18:59, 4 July 2009 (UTC)


(aviation) prefix for De Havilland manufactured aircraft model numbers--Jackofclubs 08:24, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete  Not an independent term, and only part of proper names of models. Michael Z. 2009-06-06 14:25 z
No prefix or suffix is an independent term, but we include them. I don't think we need this, but is the rationale in the fact that it is for a commercial product, that it is a brand prefix and needs to meet stricter standards? Not that I understand the logic of attesting attributive use of a prefix. This needs Talmudic, Jesuitical, or Austinian analysis. DCDuring TALK 21:56, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

sociocultural evolution

Tagged as sum of parts --Jackofclubs 08:26, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Needless self-evident jargon. Equinox 21:10, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete, as above. Mglovesfun 21:51, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete as already tagged since 11 November 2007.--Jusjih 03:07, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete DCDuring TALK 03:32, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted --Jackofclubs 12:33, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Steinway & Sons

The name of a company. No attributive use that I can think of. Several redirects also created to this article. SemperBlotto 15:08, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

- Steinway & Sons is an article like for example Rolex. (Rolex is created for over a year ago and last edited for over a year ago; on April 5, 2008). The difference between the old Rolex article and the very new Steinway & Sons article is, that the Steinway & Sons article is more informative.
- "Several redirects also created to this article. SemperBlotto". "Several" redirects are only 2 redirects, Steinway and Steinway and Sons.
—This unsigned comment was added by Fanoftheworld (talkcontribs) at 15:20, 7 June 2009 (UTC).
Another major difference is that Rolex is a word, and it's very difficult to consider Steinway & Sons as a word. Steinway should be created (family name, noun...), with a link to Wikipedia for those interested in encyclopedic information. Lmaltier 15:51, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete per nom. However, Steinway (a piano made by Steinway & Sons) sees enough use that it may warrant coverage at [[Steinway]]. —RuakhTALK 16:49, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Strong delete, no lexical/dictionary content at all. Steinway definitely merits an article as said above. Mglovesfun 19:38, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete per Ruakh (unless someone can dig up attributive use, or whatever our standard is :-) , which I highly doubt).—msh210 03:40, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted --Jackofclubs 12:33, 9 June 2009 (UTC)


"arsehole" (Bavarian?) is not the same thing as German cellar. Jcwf 13:29, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done -- Prince Kassad 13:32, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

and shit

SoP: and + shit (defn 4 - Stuff, things). As SoP as and stuff, and whatver, and crap, and whatnot. --Jackofclubs 18:35, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

The example in the article is Oh no! All this seaweed and shit is getting all over me! - well obviously you need the 'and' in there to make it grammatical in the same way that you'd say I have a cat and a dog, that doesn't mean that and a dog is an idiomatic phrase, does it? Delete, Mglovesfun 21:49, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Not so fast. What about "to get hectic and shit"? (Taken from COCA, which has 278 hits for "and shit"). It seems a bit weird grammatically, being a noun ending a sequence of adjectives. It is a construction into which the others would fit. This is not an isolated example. How does that fit into our entry at shit?
It seems strange that "shit" and "crap" can fit in the same grammatical slot as "whatever" and "whatnot".
Relatedly, what is the analysis of and all in "Sure they have a million entries and all, but they aren't a real dictionary."? DCDuring TALK 00:19, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps relatedly, how come we have and so on but not so on? (And I've heard people mocking the yoof appending "'n' shit" to things. Never a properly pronounced and.) Equinox 00:24, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
I would like to see and shit, and stuff, and crap created, just like et cetera and and so on. You can't say "and miscellaneous items", can you? Even now I am not sure what they mean exactly; they do not seem to be exactly synonymous to "et cetera". It seems they are sometimes used as a generic intensifier without necessarily referring to any cetera. --Dan Polansky 20:27, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
You could say "and miscellaneous items", but it would sound bureaucratic. Indeed there is often no referent. I'm not sure it's exactly an intensifier, though. "Whatnot", "stuff", "whatever", "all", "so on", and even "crap" convey various speaker attitudes different from "shit", possibly about the item(s) before the "and", but possibly about the situation or life in general. (Yoofs are notorious for the varied 'tudes they cop.) DCDuring TALK 20:45, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

why the Devil

SoP: why the devil. Well, actually, Devil, which needs another sense if this is attested with this case.—msh210 18:46, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

Worth comparing: what the Devil, what on Earth, who the Devil (are you?), who on Earth, where the Devil, where on Earth, what in Hell, what in God's name, where in Hell, who in God's name... I personally think we don't need to "collect the set" of these. Equinox 21:39, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Ridiculously weak keep, they do seem to be idiomatic, but native speakers tend to 'make these up as they go' and so the number of these that are attestable must be at least 100... and yet the 'idiomatic' point seems to stand, even though I'd rather it didn't. Mglovesfun 21:46, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
You could go even further. who the bloody hell are you (bloody hell); what in God's sweet name [20] has been going on? To add these as phrases based on who and what cannot be anything but a mistake. Equinox 00:31, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
It’s very idiomatic. Keep. It is not SoP because, as SoP, it makes no grammatical sense. It seems to need "in the name of" in order to be made grammatical, yet it’s used without that. —Stephen 20:43, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
There is some kind of grammar to these. It does seem as if invective has its own grammar. If we could figure out how to do that justice, it would be possible to dispense with the hundreds of otherwise ungrammatical examples of invective. Isn't there a journal called w:Maledicta? DCDuring TALK 20:54, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Move to the Devil per the fuck. DAVilla 15:39, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Move per DAVilla. It's an adequate home to place some usage examples or quotations to capture searches and present material that might overburden Devil or devil. "X the Devil" wouldn't help at all. (Keeping per Stephen might better reflect WT:CFI, though.) DCDuring TALK 15:52, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Move per DAVilla.msh210 18:11, 16 June 2009 (UTC)


plural form of pig. Shouldn't this be a synonym for pigs, but not the plural form of pig. DCDuring TALK 02:01, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Right, it's an archaic plural of sow. Now fixed. —RuakhTALK 02:35, 10 June 2009 (UTC)


This appears to be an error for envenenar. If so, then this entry and all the Spanish inflection sections on other pages need to be removed/deleted. --EncycloPetey 17:56, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

It’s an error, doesn’t exist. Delete it all. (If it did, it would mean venerate, not poison.) —Stephen 19:04, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted (team effort!). —RuakhTALK 03:09, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Canis pugnax

Sum of parts in Latin: canis (dog) + pugnax (fond of fighting, pugnacious). I could find no Latin citations, in any case. --EncycloPetey 22:57, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

  • Keep: Hello, I wrote the definition, Canis pugnax, which translates into English as "Dogs of War" or "War Dogs" this is the ancient term for domesticated fighting dog breeds used in battle. Google search comes up with Results 1 - 100 of about 11,600 for canis pugnax. (0.41 seconds) Google Scholar comes up with Results 1 - 100 of about 443 for canis pugnax. (0.21 seconds) Google books comes up with Books 1 - 100 of 414 on canis pugnax. (0.09 seconds). I feel using these search results many reliable source citations can be found, to justify 'Canis pugnax' as a word, term or idiom that belongs in Wiktionary. Thank you. WritersCramp 11:36, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
    • Most Google hits seem to be for English, and an English section should be added. Actual uses in Latin still have to be found. But there is no reason to capitalize Canis. Lmaltier 11:51, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
    The all-web search is irrelevant under our standards. In any event the hits are for articles that have "canis" and "pugnax" not for "canis pugnax". I have examined the sources and not found quotes I found satisfactory, but would be happy if someone else could find them in Latin or English (or any other language) and insert them into the entry. I particularly wonder if the term is used with a consistent meaning in the durably archived sources that we accept. DCDuring TALK 14:36, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
    I found two English uses (that seem to mimicking the scientific nomenclature) where the term is specifically applied to the bulldog, but that's not enough for CFI. --EncycloPetey 14:42, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Kept and sent to RfV.  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 14:48, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

No consensus. Premature closure. DCDuring TALK 15:09, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

If this is to get English citations it should get an English L2 header. As Latin it seems not to have any support and the spelling doesn't work. It seems to be an imitation of a taxonomic name. If it had some use in scientific literature we could perhaps keep it as an obsolete 2-part taxonomic name, directing folks to the accepted one and defining it as used. Otherwise it seems to be used as a way to promote the dog breeds whose marketers claim descent from a supposed type of ancient dog. It appears like a 18-19th century UK fabrication which has gotten new life. If the fabrication in some form meets WT:CFI, fine. It stills seems to be at the research stage. DCDuring TALK 15:23, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete unless better sources can be found. There also seems to be some confusion over whether it should be spelled 'canes' or 'canis', which doesn't give me a lot of confidence. Dougweller 12:01, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
    The spelling variation pertains to the Latin grammar of the word canis (dog). The form canis is the nominative singular, while canes is the nominative plural. --EncycloPetey 18:51, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
  • As a veteran such as you should know, each definition of of each spelling needs separate attestation showing use, not mention, from "durably archived sources", which include books, newspapers, scholarly articles, and usenet. In addition, there can be no punctuation separating the components. As I explained to you the formatted citations should be appear in the entry formatted using the models I had suggested. I explained what was wrong with the references that you offered and suggested alternative uses here and at Wikipedia for the material.
    But you are offering the same references in the same unformatted way again. I don't know how I can you help you further. DCDuring TALK 11:46, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Hi DCDuring, can you advise me what would be wrong with this citation citation. Are you suggesting starting definitions for spelling ? WritersCramp 17:33, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Again, you've provided a link, not a citation. Both DCDuring and I have advised you already on what constitutes a citation on Wiktionary, but that information has fallen on deaf ears. It is not worth our time to explain the same thing to you over and over. --EncycloPetey 17:37, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
That specific citation is not from a site that the Wiktionary community deems "durably archived". DCDuring TALK 17:57, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Hi, take a look a look at this book, Arrian he does use the term 'canes pugnaces' which is the plural of canis pugnax. Is this adequate for you? WritersCramp 01:15, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
This Arrian fellow's book seems to have gotten from the Latin and Greek authors who wrote about dogs everything to be obtained and more. Others writing about dogs cited and quoted him. His inferences are interesting, but he has not left us a legacy of words that made an imprint on the language. Even in the one use of "canes pugnaces" is printed "canes pugnaces", further muddying the waters. The italics for "pugnaces" mark it as Latin, but "canes" is not so marked, making it English? The fewness of uses (in durably archived sources etc) of any form of "canis pugnax" make it not suitable for inclusion until more evidence comes to light. Perhaps we should preserve this one almost-right citation at Citations:canes pugnax. DCDuring TALK 01:59, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
Uh... why? If you look a few words further, the quote has "canes pugnaces or bellicosi." It's not clear that he is intending this to be a set phrase at all. He seems to me to (correctly) be using two different adjectives to describe dogs. Just as "large or heavy dog" wouldn't be worth citing at Citations:heavy dog, so this doesn't merit keeping either. --EncycloPetey 02:10, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
What I think we need is a new policy and procedure at Wiktionary pertaining to administrators. I think a rotation system with a one-year maximum as administrator and then sit out for one-year. Currently, it is an unfortunate dictatorship. The admins love it and the editors loathe it. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. Death to the empire -:) WritersCramp 10:47, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
Yet More Citations: The Farrier and Naturalist, Chapters from My Official Life, Kindred brutes, Cura e addestramento del cane, Francisci Sancti Brocensis In Inclyta Salmancicensi WritersCramp 11:38, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
You have yet to insert a single quotation in this entry. Have you ever put one in any entry ever? Did you take the trouble to look at how it is supposed to be done? I provided examples that fully illustrated how it would be done. I would have been willing to help.
I'll be happy to take a look at the citations once you take the trouble to insert them in the entry. It is conceivable that enough printed works have been written to demonstrate that the term for the pseudo-species "Canis pugnax" is in use. That would mean independent citations in italics in the spelling "Canis pugnax". I look forward to seeing the citations. DCDuring TALK 12:46, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
Hi, no point in putting them in if the administrators are going to delete them, take a peak at them and see if they pass the admin first sniff test. Thanks WritersCramp 13:59, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted, based on lack of any citations, lack of effort to provide any, and same silliness going on at Wikipedia as GreenSquares. --EncycloPetey 14:13, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

At this point is clear that EncycloPetey is no longer needed as an administrator. He won't abide by the rules, he is arrogant and he is hurting Wiktionary. Time to give to him the boot! WritersCramp 16:34, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
At this point what seems clearer to me is that you would rather pick a fight than contribute to Wiktionary. There is nothing whatsoever preventing you from adding citations to Citations:canis pugnax or Citations:Canis pugnax.
You might even come to enjoy the process of attesting entries, as I have, or even helping others attest entries or engaging productively in discussions about what conforms to Wiktionary policy and practice and when those should change. And well-cited, valid entries are always welcome. DCDuring TALK 18:12, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
I have written the definition twice and EncycloPetey has deleted it twice without a consensus, so DCDuring can you explain why this editor should remain an administrator at Wiktionary? WritersCramp 22:57, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
It has been deleted because you have not provided appropriate citations. WT:CFI explains which kinds of citation are acceptable, and a few people have explained it in the comments here as well. If things are not properly cited, anyone could invent any old word and we would be overrun by words nobody has really used. Equinox 23:15, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
He should remain an administrator because he has done nothing wrong. I don't understand why you don't take the trouble to present your evidence in a usable format. We're all volunteers here. Why should we be carrying your water? If you provide valid citations (per WT:CFI) for a Latin, English, or other version of an entry, the citations will be on the citations page and will not be removed. If there is attestation of a pseudo species name we will figure out how to present it. DCDuring TALK 00:35, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
The overwhelming consensus on Wikipedia was that this was sum of parts. Only one collocation (Renaissance) of these two words was ever found, although that one use was cited over and over by later authors. It was decided that the use in that instance was best translated "vicious dog". You can see the discussion at w:Talk:Canes pugnaces, where WritersCramp is commenting under the name User:Green Squares. --EncycloPetey 20:23, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
The consensus was it should be redirected to Dogs in warfare, not sum of parts. Remember, Wikipedia has different rules than Wiktionary... freakin noobs! WritersCramp 11:57, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

I. umbellata

Another one. DCDuring TALK 23:50, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted - gone the way of B. splendens et al. --Jackofclubs 08:11, 10 June 2009 (UTC)


Spelling mistake. ൯ -> Malayalam number 9, ന്‍ -> Malayalam letter N --Sadik Khalid 06:53, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

curse you

damn you

These are just literally a sum of parts ?Goldenrowley 16:32, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

I'd say delete for the same reasons as at why the Devil above: it is an open set constructed according to a standard grammatical formula (imperative). "Damn him!" "Curse them!" "Damn y'all!" "Damn my mother-in-law's dog!" There is nothing special about "damn you". Equinox 16:47, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
This is on all fours with fuck you, isn't it? I think we've been treating all of these as "discourse directives" (or something similarly academic) and therefore idiomatic. I don't know that that is the right way to treat any of them. DCDuring TALK 16:53, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
I see a difference, fuck you does not literally mean to have sex. Damn you and curse you is much more literal. Goldenrowley 19:43, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
But not literal. They are formulaic phrases that omit words that would be necessary to make them grammatical: "May God damn you", "I curse you". They would then meet one of the sufficient criteria for idioms AFAICT. If we want to be selective in how we apply CFI, we should instead amend CFI to reflect our preferences. DCDuring TALK 12:23, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
In a direct command ^an imperative^, it is fine to omit the subject that wants it done, and it is still grammatically correct...hence I don't have to say "I ask you to speak" I can just say "speak." Unless I forget something. Goldenrowley 15:50, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
It would be considered presumptuous for a son of Eve to order God to damn anyone. Who is being ordered in "Curse you!"? God? Other supernaturals? Wiccans? Speaker? I doubt, therefore, that it is in fact an imperative. It is better considered like an optative or cohortative mood, but this can inferred only from knowing how the expression is used, not from the words of the expression itself. I don't know that it can be said to be a normal grammatical construction and more than fuck you with which it seems to share its grammar or non-grammatical construction. DCDuring TALK 15:25, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
It could pass as a speech act. The applicable rule is the never mind test, but I can't remember the one entry we passed, an AAVE expression, that would have fallen under it. Definitely I would include damn it under this rule. I think this reasoning may also apply to damn you but not damn him because, in some uses at least, the first is not actually cursing, or at least I think that case can be made. I also like DCD's reasoning to include all, but I'm not sure where to draw the line, and certainly my mother-in-law's dog must be on the other side. I will abstain for now. DAVilla 15:34, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


I notice we've just deleted the Japanese entry for ojo which acted as a mini index to ojō, ōjo, and ōjō. The Chinese entry for ou acts as a mini index to ōu, óu, ǒu, and òu.

All of the arguments for and against seem to apply equally to both languages.

The specific arguments which resulted in deletion in that case were:

  • romanization with no indication of vowel length seems to be what you might call a "common misromanization".
  • This is what {{also}} was designed for.

See Talk:ojo

The only linguistic difference is that the diacritics for Japanese indicate vowel length whereas the diacritics for Chinese indicate tone.

If we have no policy that "mini indexes" are suitable for languages whose romanization indicates tone but not vowel length then the existing policies must be applied equally to all languages.

The only other difference I could identify in the Japanese page from the Chinese page is the format. If the issue is the format then this should be clearly stated rather than the arguments in the previous RFD. — hippietrail 07:04, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Note that Fantizi is also currently under RFD for being a Chinese romanization without dicritics. — hippietrail 07:20, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Strong keep. We have several thousand of these entries, one for every Chinese language. While that alone is not a basis for keeping them, they are not indexes, but definitions. It is easy enough to come across texts containing transliterated Chinese phrases where the diacritics are left out altogether, meaning that the reader looking up the term will not know which tone to use (or even which tones can be used for a particular word, or that the Chinese language has tones). We have two alternatives - have a short definition indicating that ou is a Chinese word which is missing a necessary accent (akin to a common misspelling), or to list all the Chinese words for which this error can be made in each unaccented form (which, in some cases, would yield a list of hundreds). I suggest that it would not be worth the labor of removing these thousands of entries to the end of making our dictionary less informative. bd2412 T 18:44, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
All of these points apply equally well to Japanese other than the "status quo" argument. We have of course made much more sweeping changes in the past so I'm sure we have any real basis for keeping status quo as a basis for policy, de facto or otherwise. Changing the first-letter capitalization of the entire Wiktionary a few years ago was a much bigger change for instance. — hippietrail 08:34, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Well then let me reiterate what is really my primary point: these entries properly define the words as they are actually used in print. We would fail as a reference if a person reading a Chinese transliteration with missing diacritics could get no sense from this dictionary how the words in the text before him are actually defined. bd2412 T 17:54, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

pub name

Means "the name of a pub". --EncycloPetey 15:07, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

  • delete (and pub names, too, because you cannot consider them as words: Coach and Horses, etc.). Lmaltier 15:31, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete. And I don't think King's Arms, Nag's Head, and all the specific names of pubs he's been adding are dictionary material either. Equinox 15:33, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete (and all the exemplars and your little dog too) Isn't w:Pub names enough? Is there any good reason to even have an Appendix of these? DCDuring TALK 16:20, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
There might be, which is why I didn't raise the issue myself. Many English surnames and place names derive from inn sign/pub sign names. I can see having them here in some form for that reason. --EncycloPetey 16:23, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
I can see the point, but not every term referenced in an etymology has to be within Wiktionary. In many cases WP has superior (longer, anyway) etymologies, especially semantic-type etymologies, some of which we dismiss as folk etymologies and wouldn't necessarily want here. We already link to almost all two-part species name in WP and/or 'Species. ({{spelink}} does so in a nifty way.) Even a non-link wouldn't be terrible.
As to individual pub names, they seem to me just a quaint, folksy variety of company and product names/trademarks/service marks to which a higher standard for inclusion applies under current WT:CFI. DCDuring TALK 17:44, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Strong delete, for all the reasons above. --Mglovesfun 17:48, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete this entry and any specific pub names that do not meet the CFI for brand names. bd2412 T 18:05, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
I think you've misunderstood about pub names. They're not names of specific brands or companies; they're generic names derived from signs that are repeated at many different pubs across England. Two pubs named King's Head may have nothing whatsoever to do with each other, but the name is common (and even was used in the US prior to 1776 or so). They're closer in style to given names of people or surnames than to brand names. --EncycloPetey 20:02, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
I understand that they are different entities, but they are still brand names, even for those independent entities. There's a famous case in trademark law where the USPTO found that two eateries named "Steve's" (one was a hot dog place, the other an ice cream parlor) were not confusingly similar because so many independent uses of the name exist, but that doesn't compel us to have a definition for "Steve's" as a popular name for eateries in the U.S. There are dozen's of unrelated restaurants named "Steve's Pizza" or "Golden Buddha", but we ought not have entries for these either unless they meet the CFI for brand names. bd2412 T 20:15, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Comparable are Joe's and Joe's Diner which are treated as the generic names for generic local bars or eateries in the US and needed to be cited as such, however imperfectly. We may be missing Mom's, as in the famous (in the US) advice "Never eat at a restaurant called 'Mom's'." DCDuring TALK 20:45, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Indeed - I'm not opposed to including them altogether, if anyone can show by appropriate citations that a writer who said "we went to the local King's Head to mollify our sorrows" would be understood to be saying "a pub" then I'll be fine with having that entry. But the phrase "pub name" will be SoP nonetheless. bd2412 T 03:05, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
Deleted along with all exemplars. I have considered adding traditional English pub names for some time, but all these had no useful content. An appendix, giving the derivation or significance, might be useful - if only I had the time. SemperBlotto 06:36, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

range estimation

This looks like sum or parts to me; it is estimation of the range. --EncycloPetey 23:35, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

I dunno. 3 senses of estimation, 11 of range for the noun alone. Under the new hyperinclusionism this seems like a slam dunk. DCDuring TALK 03:09, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Only if there is just one sense in which this term applies. I believe it applies to multiple senses of both components. For example, in a statistical study, I may do a range estimation of the dataset without actually calculating it. --EncycloPetey 20:08, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
What's "the new hyperinclusionism"? I agree with Petey that this term has other senses than the one for which I supplied a definition. Can we resolve this by enumerating some more definitions, possibly with cross-references to relevant existing Wiktionary entries? -- Soargain 19:34, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
The point is that if this is estimation of a range in many different senses, then it's not an idiomatic phrase but, rather, just a couple of words strung together like "brown horse" or "marble floor", and not worthy of inclusion under the CFI (see especially the section on "Idiomaticity").msh210 19:41, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete I agree this is sum-of-parts. In my experience, range estimation is performed by a soldier, with no instruments or with his weapon's iron sights or reticle, in preparation for firing. If you have instruments, then it is range-finding (rangefinding?), or rangingMichael Z. 2009-06-15 22:51 z
You are speaking of a particular, probably the most familiar, application of range estimation - but there are others that are different in important ways. See below. -- Soargain
My point is that there is a variety of range estimations, and, as EP points out below, the phrase is not idiomatic but means an estimation of whichever kind of range one speaks of. But I'd be happy to see you prove me wrong by finding one or more idiomatic examples. Michael Z. 2009-06-16 01:26 z

As background to this discussion: Wikipedia articles use this term over 1000 times in a variety of ways, and an article I am writing will add to that list. My article's usage, while common, is not the same as a similar, more familiar one (mentioned above by Mzajac) relevant to marksmanship. So, I had hoped to prevent confusion by making my use link to the proper Wiktionary entry. Upon finding Wiktionary had no entry at all, then following Wiktionary's search-failure message to find the welcome message stating that "anything is better than nothing", and that others can be expected to come along and improve my entry, I simply added my definition. In hindsight I should have done this by providing a primary definition to distinguish the generic uses, a second to distinguish use in the marksmanship realm, and my own definition as #3. An RFD was not the reaction I expected, although I see the reasoning if in fact "range estimate" possessed only its weakly idiomatic usages, such as the one from statistics. (Although I thought DCDuring's response clarified the situation quite a bit. But maybe I'm slightly biased. And while I still don't know what "the new hyperinclusionism" means, it sure sounds like it would mitigate against deletion. <smile>)

In any case, I hope it has become clear that the adjective word "range" does combine with "estimation" to yield a generic phrase, but also a variety of idiomatic meanings; thus the situation is not lack of idiomaticity but rather too much of it, practically crying out for a dictionary entry resolving the situation. I will rewrite the entry as I've described above; I hope Petey will see this as addressing the problem raised, and therefore rescind the RFD, or revise it to an RFC encouraging improvements to my initial amateurish effort. Thanks. -- Soargain 23:03, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

Search for examples, etc., resulted in an entry slightly different than what I proposed above. I believe it's fairly self-explanatory. -- Soargain 00:21, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

I think all of the definitions are better dealt with under range. If one knows which kind of range is to be estimated, then the meaning is obvious from the components. Note also that range is not an adjecitve in this case, but is a noun used attributively. --EncycloPetey 00:28, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Agree. Any of the definitions could also apply to distance estimation or limits estimation, or range determination or range assessment, or some other collocation of synonyms. There's nothing special about the particular phrase range estimation, except that it may be a bit more common than others. Michael Z. 2009-06-16 01:31 z

Meaning cannot be "obvious from the components" when the combination of components yields more than one meaning. Marksmen use "range estimation" to mean a unique thing; statisticians, meteorologists, and practitioners in various other fields each have their own unique definitions. Mzajac's list of combinations look similar to "range estimation", but they do not have this "overloaded technical term" quality. As DCDuring implied early on, there are potentially 33 permutations - and that's just using Wiktionary's definitions for range and estimation, other dictionaries have a few more for range.

Let us not completely lose sight of the problem I'm trying to solve: given the familiarity of the most common usage, some reasonably qualified readers of articles about weather phenomena can be expected to need help understanding the difference between a meteorologist's definition and a marksman's. I can simply put the relevant definitions in the article, but I thought I could meet the need better by using Wiktionary's well-crafted integration with Wikipedia, and benefit Wiktionary in the process. -- Soargain 03:54, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

We're not losing sight of that issue. We're saying that the solution does not fit the problem. The problem is actually in the meaning of range. No matter which type of range is meant, the "estimation" part of the expression means exactly the same thing: "making an estimate". The only difference in each case is the sense of the range being estimated.
In situations like that, Wiktionary does not create separate entries, because it's not functioning as a single word. We want "all words in all languages", but not all combinations of parts. Some combinations, even though common, can be correctly interpreted from their parts, even if there are many possible meanings. If I talk about a last set; I could mean the final group of exercises, the final portion of a tennis match, the final pieces of music played, or any number of other things. Despite the potential for confusion, we won't create an entry for last set because the meaning in each case is determined by the context of set, and that's where the various definitions should go. --EncycloPetey 04:20, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

All the new definitions are still just "estimations" of "range" - delete. SemperBlotto 06:57, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

"Range" has a section of cross-references to entries for over a dozen derived compound terms. "range estimation" fits the pattern "a term derived from range", does it not? If "range estimation" is to be deleted, it seems that by your proposed criteria, the derived terms section of "range" must also be deleted, along with the already-defined terms firing range and shooting range.

(BTW, I just re-scanned "Please don't bite the newcomers" and some of you have run roughshod over those guidelines. I started managing large multi-user systems in 1979; a less scarred person might be throwing in the towel right about now. The pattern I'm seeing here is I describe my goal, and get erudite lectures on my addition's flaws, as well as people chiming in saying "Yeah, she's a witch, delete", but no references to relevant exemplary solutions, in fact no proposed solutions at all. Of course, if one proposes a solution, one might have to defend it against the nabobs of negativity.) -- Soargain 17:00, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Please be aware also that the "Don't bite the newcomers" page is a Wikipedia page. This is Wiktionary. If you are complaining that we don't follow that guideline, then you should remember that it is a page on a separate Wikimedia project. Expecting us to follow Wikipedia policies and guidelines is like expecting Christians to follow Jewish law. We have our own policies and guidelines. Citing guidelines from another project is a bit rude. That is a common mistake, but please respect the fact that we are not Wikipedia.
Noted. As you say, I made a common mistake. I apologize. -- Soargain
Now, as to your more relevant complaint, I don't understand... solution to what? The problem seems to exist in Wikipedia, yet you seem intent on forcing a solution here. I don't follow the logic in that. ...
As I wrote earlier, I thought this was the most broadly beneficial way to meet my need to provide a definition for a term in a Wikipedia article. This belief was inspired by the second sentence on Wiktionary's front page:
Designed as the lexical companion to Wikipedia, the encyclopaedia project...
which is also why, not finding said definition, and determining as best I could that my term was both attested and idiomatic, I "boldly" added it, thereby stumbling into an ongoing debate over Wiktionary inclusion of multi-word terms... on the losing side. More below. -- Soargain
... And no, the deletion of range estimation is not contrary to the keeping of firing range or shooting range. In the case of range estimation, we have a pair of nouns, one of which clarifies the sense but the other has a fixed meaning. In shooting range and firing range, there is a participle modifer of a noun, where the meaning of the noun is changed by the addition of the participle and the participle is not used in its usual meaning. We have tried to explain to you that your goal of having an entry for range estimation is contrary to the goals of Wiktionary. If you need a solution to a problem on Wikipedia, then the solution should be sought there. Perhaps this has not been explicitly stated in an understandable way, but that is the gist of the discussion you have been following.
Finally, please note that this page is primarily a discussion forum for specific entries, and only sometimes of general policies and practices. If the conversation seems terse, then it is because we are trying to stick to discussing the entry in question, and not the larger problem you are having with explaining terms on Wikipedia. Larger discussions happen in the Beer Parlour. --EncycloPetey 17:42, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
We are not very militant about patrolling the content of derived terms. To some extent, those terms serve the purpose of drawing searches to the terms that are the component words, putting the terms with those derived terms at the top of the search list. That they are red link may motivate someone to add the entry, which then gets more scrutiny.
None of the dictionaries included at [www.OneLook.com OneLook] has "range estimation". On reviewing Google books I found no dictionary or glossary that defined "range estimation". Instead "range estimation" is used to define other terms. This indicates that many think the term is more or less self-evident.
We just haven't figured out acceptable, easy-to-communicate ways to draw lines between content to be included and content to be excluded for multi-word terms, especially nouns. Would it be easier if we simply strongly discouraged any multi-word terms, directing contibutors to Wiktionary:Requested entries or an improved or specialized version of it? DCDuring TALK 18:16, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Your last question is a larger issue, not directly relevant to discussion of this specific entry, and should be discussed in a more appropriate forum. --EncycloPetey 18:23, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm concerned that the contributor is not likely to join us for such a discussion.
"Range estimation" may seem to be excludable because the definition does not make clear an important element of its meaning. If I understand correctly, "range estimation" would not include an estimate of distance that is based on triangulation or on a map. It seems confined to estimating a distance from a single "point", actually a station, vessel, an apparatus, or an individual, using only the sensors available at that point. Accordingly, it would seem to meet one of our idiomaticity tests. Egyptian pyramid comes to mind, but I get confused about these. DCDuring TALK 18:47, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Did you notice that it also has statistical application, and so is not confined as you describe? The Egyptian pyramid entry was kept because it is not simply a pyramid from Egypt, but because there are many specific physical features implied in the combination (square base, sloping sides rather than stepped, particular anlges of slope, details of internal architecture, purpose as a royal tomb, etc.). That isn't at all the case here, where the term simply means that a range is being estimated. --EncycloPetey 19:10, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't understand what bearing your first question has on the matter at hand. Are you suggesting that if one possible sense of a multi-word term is not idiomatic, then we should exclude the term no matter how many senses are idiomatic? This would be a powerful tool indeed for limiting multi-word entries. It would probably eliminate, for example, all phrasal verbs. In any event, I don't find it in WT:CFI.
There are many ways of estimating range in ballistics. The only ones that seem to be included are those that rely on the sensors present at a point. If I were to use, say, a satellite-based to determine the range to be used for establishing a firing angle, I don't think the term range estimation would be used, even though the I am estimating a range. IOW, it would be rather like an Egyptian pyramid. Whether my understanding of how the term is used is correct would be an empirical matter. DCDuring TALK 19:56, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
My first question was meant to determine that you realized your claim that '[i]t seems confined to estimating a distance from a single "point",' was false. I'm not sure how you drew all those other inferences from it. --EncycloPetey 20:50, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

I acquiesce. "range estimation" is a lost cause.
-- Soargain 19:58, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
So I conclude from my review of usage. Triangulation methods are not excluded in many of the applications. I'm sure if I looked further I would find almost no restrictions of methods other than the laws of physics. Delete DCDuring TALK 20:44, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Deleted. DAVilla 04:22, 18 June 2009 (UTC)


This page is severely POV. It extols patriotism as a virtue. Many Europeans would object to that. For us patriotism is the political system of lies and distortion, the very insanity that politicians used to lead us through the trenches of Verdun to the hell-fires of Auschwitz. Not a virtue at all. Jcwf 01:29, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

Keep No WT:CFI rationale provided for deletion. Clearly in widespread use in the senses given. DCDuring TALK 02:04, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

As per NPOV is a legitimate reason for non-inclusion as is. The 'widespread use in sense given' is severely US-biased. The rest of the world does not necessarily think waterboarding is a virtue DC. Jcwf 02:48, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
OK I neutralized it a bit. Perhaps if both versions can be mentioned one could say it is neutral. Jcwf 02:57, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
It would need supporting citations. DCDuring TALK 03:02, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Neither the second nor the third sense fit with other dictionaries' definitions. I'm not familiar with them. Are they non-US senses? Cambridge Advanced learners and Longman's don't have them.
OnlineEtyD says that from mid c 18th century "patriot" was sometimes used pejoratively in the UK and that Johnson's 4th ed. had it sometimes used to mean "factitious disturber of the government". DCDuring TALK 03:51, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
That's factiousMichael Z. 2009-06-14 15:48 z
People are indoctrinated with the ideas of patriotism for only ONE REASON: because it serves the interests of the wealthy upper class: the plutocrats, who are not concerned at all about their country, nor any country in particular, since they belong to NO country...

not me, but an anglophone like you Jcwf 04:18, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

So what? What bearing does a citation from a source that is not durably archived have? The author doesn't seem to be an authority on lexicography. It does seem to be a use of the word patriotism in the first sense, but it is not usable. You seem to be getting off the point of an RfD.
I gather from what you've written that you are concerned with the consequences of other people acting out of patriotic motives. What does that have to do with this RfD, this definition, or Wiktionary?
People use the word patriotism proudly, indifferently, jestingly, angrily, hatefully, sneeringly, etc. but that doesn't change the definition. Wiktionary doesn't normally follow every possible emotion with which words are delivered or received. The focus for almost all words is on the referent. DCDuring TALK 04:54, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
"Is patriotism a mistake? I think that it is a mistake twice over: it is typically a grave moral error and its source is typically a state of mental confusion."

Page 3 of Patriotism and other mistakes By George Kateb Edition: illustrated Published by Yale University Press, 2006 ISBN 0300120494, 9780300120493

A durably archived quote.

Jcwf 05:19, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

I do apologize if it does not conform with your patriotic POV. —This comment was unsigned.
Your apology should only be for failing to introduce citations that support your RfD and for bringing the RfD. I thank you for quotations that show that people who don't like patriotism or its consequences nevertheless use the word in accordance with the meaning dictionaries ascribe to it. That is how we know what they are talking about. After reviewing the quotations, I rest your case. DCDuring TALK 05:28, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
We are after all a dictionary and undeniably patriotism is a word in English. The citations we give are to demonstrate the word's meaning, not to get out own political bias across. Obviously we're not gonna delete it! --Mglovesfun 06:35, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
I understand Jcwf's concern. Actually, it was not an RfD at all.
The definition might be improved a bit, in order to suggest that other countries are loved much less (or not loved at all): I feel that somebody loving not only his own country, but all other countries as well, and equally, cannot be called a patriot. Yet, the current definition might apply to him.
Providing two citations (one favourable to patriotism and one against patriotism) might help to understand the meaning better. Lmaltier 17:06, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
I understand his concern, too, and might have been quite sympathetic had it not led to near-vandalism. For one thing, once an RfD tag is on an entry, it IS an RfD. If something else was intended, there was ample opportunity to express regret. If it is an RfD, then WT:CFI applies. NPOV at Wiktionary is simply about neutrally describing how the word is used. To say the entry definition, virtually identical to the wording in most dictionaries, is NPOV and then insert a grossly NPOV new definition suggests for "balance" suggests a complete misunderstanding of what a dictionary (or any reference work) is. If someone cannot control their hormones enough to remember what we are trying to do when they see a word whose meaning they don't like, then they ought to keep themselves away from such entries or from Wiktionary. There are plenty of blogs and Usenet groups for fighting ideological battles.
Keep and Move to RfV for citations of tagged senses. DCDuring TALK 17:54, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
You are right, but this could be resolved by improving the definition: it's not wrong, but incomplete, and therefore very misleading about the way this word is actually used. But it's not easy to build a perfect definition. Lmaltier 18:09, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
That is one of the reasons for an RfV. I would like advocates of a sense worded differently from other dictionaries to produce the citations which would enable a definition writer to see the usage they are talking about. It is not easy for someone unfamiliar with and skeptical about the sense to do the work required. Is the suggestion that there is a different referent? That usage has a predominately negative valence? That the definition should be worded to include some or all the consequences of patriotism? That there are regional differences? Each possibility can be addressed by collecting citations, thereby making a better Wiktionary. DCDuring TALK 18:47, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Of course, what people feel about this word may vary, there may be regional and personal differences about these feelings (e.g. I personally think to the Latin phrase w:Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori). However, as far as I know, sense 1 is the only sense, but the definition must be improved, for the reason mentioned above. Currently, it's normal that it may be felt as a serious POV issue. How could it be possible to prove that the meaning of the word is at least somewhat related to other countries vs one's own country? It's obvious to me, and it's probably clear from many citations, but citations cannot prove it. Lmaltier 21:04, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

It is ridiculous to delete the entire page because one definition has a partisan point of view. That definition has already been removed, and I have restored the quotation as it obviously fits into the primary sense. Merge the other sense or delete as duplicative. DAVilla 04:37, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

I'm not sure that I grasp what version of the RfD process this is. I missed the "ridiculous" clause in the version I've read. If there is "ridiculousness" clause, who gets to apply it and how? DCDuring TALK 12:00, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
I have inserted an {{rfd-sense}} tag to the first sense, which seems to have been the target of the objection AFAICT. It could be that the other sense was included. I have found citations for both of the remaining senses. The summarily deleted sense could be restored upon anyone's request. DCDuring TALK 16:05, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

I have doubts about the second sense (concern for the common good of one's political community). At least the current citations do not support it. The first is about patriotism in each East European country (sense #1 type patriotism), the second about Irish patriotism (ditto). In the third example the attribute "European" is used to indicate that the word "patriotism" is used somewhat unorthodoxically, i.e. "patriotism" alone does not mean "concern for one's community" but the expression "European patriotism" does. --Hekaheka 22:57, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

I was focused on the "common welfare" part of the def. I agree with your assessment, though. The problem, IMO, is that there is not much dictionary support for any sense other than the first given. I was perfectly willing to go along with the gag in hopes that there was something new under the sun. Do you have any ideas of how to search for possible newer senses without getting swamped by the old one? DCDuring TALK 00:12, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
For me, the lack of dictionary support for the second sense indicates that it is a candidate for deletion unless supporting evidence can be found. I would not worry too much about searching for every possible sense in which a word has ever been used. If you have never heard it used that way, it is somebody else's business to prove it. This sense was added by User: Versageek, who is still active. Maybe we should ask him, if he can provide any citations. He may simply have erred, and might be just happy to correct his mistake. If he can prove it, even better. --Hekaheka 12:14, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
The request was about POV. In order to be more precise and more neutral, I would propose something like that:
  • Deep-rooted love of one's country (or, sometimes, alliance of countries), as opposed to other countries, in defence or wartime contexts
  • Such a kind of feeling in other contexts (e.g. economic patriotism)
The major difference is in the addition of as opposed to other countries. I think this is the key to understand the meaning of the word. Lmaltier 12:35, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the constructive suggestions. Perhaps a single sense, with an "especially":
deep-rooted [patriotism could be shallow or deep; deepness is not inherent]
love of one's country [I'd like to see this tested on some US states, Puerto Rico, various separatist situations]
(or, sometimes, alliance of countries), [Would this and other classes of non-national scope of application be better in a usage note, especially because of the repeated use of "country" below?]
as opposed to other countries, [Is this essential? alternative wording "in competition, contest, or conflict with other countries. Also the "war on terror" invokes patriotism without a "national" opponent.]
especially in defence or wartime contexts. [What about sports? and, um, linguistic nationalism? The alternative wording might eliminate the need for this phrase.]
I think the second sense can be dispensed with if we have language such as "in competition, contest, or conflict with other countries".
How about this as a one-sense, one-line alternative?
  • Love of one's country, especially in competition, contest, or conflict with others.
What would need to go in a usage note is reference to non-national (but still territorial?) scope for the term. DCDuring TALK 15:41, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
An ultra-simple suggestion:
  • Love of one's country.
The disputed formulation, BTW, is copied word-by-word from Webster's. --Hekaheka 16:58, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
DCDuring's suggestion seems about OK except for the "especially". I would change it to something like when. I'm convinced that the word is never used without an implicit reference to other countries, and this part was missing (which was the reason for the POV discussion). If somebody really loves his country, but loves all other countries as well, at the same level, he cannot be called a patriot, because it's not the meaning of the word. Webster's definition is incomplete (surprisingly, because most Webster's definitions are very good). Lmaltier 17:24, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
The trouble with implicit reference is that it leaves no evidence. Webster's 1913 definitions are not that good, IMO. Modern dictionaries are more brief, more along the straightforward lines suggested by Hekaheka. I have yet to see actual evidence that patriotism is used in the restrictive way you are advocating. DCDuring TALK 17:52, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Edit conflict, re HekaHeka:

Certainly better than Websters 1913. OK with me. Perhaps we should add "homeland" to "country". In writing about Africa or the Kurds or the Timorese, patriotism could easily be used without any qualifying adjective to refer to a patriotism not direct to a nation state. I have read about "local patriotism" concerning Afghanistan. DCDuring TALK 17:52, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, homeland might be better, although the meaning is about the same. About the restriction in meaning: do you really think that somebody could love all countries equally, even his own country's enemies, and still be called a patriot? It seems quite obvious to me (and to Jcwf too, clearly) that this addition to the definition is a key part of the meaning. Lmaltier 18:06, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't think that the word itself speaks to attitude toward other countries, except that, when as and if forced to choose, one would love no other homeland more. The empirical reality of the concomitants of patriotism and the pragmatics and rhetoric of "patriotism" are too long to fit in a sense line. Perhaps a usage note could get some of the basics, but much of this seems encyclopedic (not to mention potentially inflammatory). There is also the saying patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels, probably includable as a proverb and a derived term of [[patriotism]] and which might be includable as a quotation, either on the entry page and certainly on the citations page. DCDuring TALK 19:04, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I would say "one would love one's homeland more". And even "much more". Patriotism necessarily implies that. This is why it may be considered as something good or as a danger (this sentence is encyclopedic, of course, and should not be included at all, but the definition should be complete). Lmaltier 19:40, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Reagan smash

Creative invention or protologism. Zero hits on Google book search. SemperBlotto 16:40, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

A phrase is not unused simply because it is not featured in any books. This interjection has arisen out of popular culture very recently and is used widely in a comic form (often by children). --Top Cat 14 16:48, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Thank you - that's what we call a protologism. Deleted SemperBlotto 16:51, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Words that have arisen "very recently" and do not appear in durably archived sources are not included on Wiktionary, because it does not meet our minimum requirements for inclusion, as stated on WT:CFI. --EncycloPetey 16:52, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

waste time

This is not idiomatic. DCDuring TALK 15:08, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes, it is. One cannot literally waste time the way one can waste water or paper. To waste a resource means to carelessly use too much, with the excess as refuse. To waste time means to spend one's alloted time idly, which is the opposite meaning. This is a special case of "waste" that is only used with "time". That's why our definition of waste currently mentions time specifically in the definition. --EncycloPetey 15:18, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't see anything unique to time in this regard. I could waste an opportunity, any singular thing, or a fixed allotment of something in the same way. (In the news: "Never waste a good crisis.") DCDuring TALK 15:45, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
But time is not a singular thing, it is a dimension for measuring spacetime. And you've missed my idling point; you cannot idly sit around wasting width. most items that are wasted are actively wasted; time wasted is the exception as it is always wasted passively. --EncycloPetey 15:50, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
Other dictionaries don't distinguish much by the nature of the resource being wasted. Time is philosophically or physically or cognitively very interesting as the matrix in which we live but in terms of the semantics of wasting it is wasted just like any other of the less tangible uncountable flow variable quantities. Linguistically, if not metaphysically, time flows as many other things are said to flow. I could waste flows of opportunity, money, energy, enthusiasm, sunlight, generosity; of opportunities, dollar bills, batteries, enthusiasms, days of sunlight, donations. I could do it idly or actively. There may or may not be a tangible residue. I think our definition of "waste" seems to be excessively narrow in a way I cannot find supported in other dictionaries I have looked at. Though I haven't thought deeply about this, it is conceivable that it would pay to have distinctly worded senses or distinct usage examples for tangible vs, intangible resources, for storable vs. non-storable ones, for countable vs. uncountable, or for singular vs quantifiable resources, though I haven't noticed it in other dictionaries.
In any event, I do not see a case for the uniqueness of time in this regard: it seems like just another liquid linguistically. DCDuring TALK 03:53, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep as a phrasebook entry at least. DAVilla 04:08, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete It's not much of a phrase but a term, but a sum-of-parts term. The collocation would be valuable to English learners, but our CFI and ELE do not recognize this value.
EP writes that “To waste a resource means to carelessly use too much”, and that's just how you waste time. By idling, you can also waste my attention, their good will, the afternoon, your spouse's best years, or gasoline. Michael Z. 2009-06-18 04:57 z
Keep, it seems to be idiomatic in the sense that a child or a non-native speaker wouldn't understand it from waste +‎ time. So I think it's both SoP and idiomatic (which is not a contradiction). Mglovesfun 11:22, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
A syllogism:
  • There isn't a single phrase in Mandarin that I understand.
I am either a child or a non-native speaker.
Therefore, all phrases in Mandarin should be entered. DCDuring TALK 14:46, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
No, because Mg said "wouldn't understand it from waste + time". That is, your syllogism should go as follows:
I am either a child or a non-native speaker of Hebrew. [Switching to Hebrew on the guess that you don't know it, because I can give a sensible example in it.]
I don't understand Template:Hebr.
I do understand Template:Hebr,‎ Template:Hebr, and Template:Hebr.
Therefore, the phrase Template:Hebr should be included.
I'm not saying I agree with Mg, but that would seem more closely to approximate his statement.msh210 00:32, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete. I don't consider it idiomatic; Mzajac's examples sum up my viewpoint. Equinox 14:13, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep, it's common whether SoP, idiomatic or not. Plus the translations can be useful to native English-speakers. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 14:20, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Neither criterion (commonness, translator desire for blue-linked phrases) has any bearing. See WT:CFI. Is this idiomatic? By which of the sometimes-used criteria? DCDuring TALK 14:46, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
“It's common” is not a suitable argument, because if it's not idiomatic then it's not a common term by our criteria. Per Google Books go to school and in the house are more common, but we don't include them. There's a point where a language learner's needs move beyond a dictionary and into a language guide or lessons. Heck, we even include a phrase book, but this falls outside its scope.
We've been here before, many times. Fellow editors, please don't vote to keep something just because you want it. Just propose a change in the guidelines once, instead of conducting 100 discussions which are likely to get nowhere. Voting with your heart is not only pointless but counterproductive, if it contradicts the guidelines. Michael Z. 2009-06-20 15:08 z
Delete per DCDuring's analysis.msh210 00:36, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete. EncycloPetey may be correct that "waste" has a different sense in "waste time" from in "waste money", "waste effort", etc.; I'm not sure, and I think it can be validly debated. But it's obvious that it has the same sense in "waste time" as in "waste a lot of time", "waste several hours", and "no time was wasted". In other words, "waste" may well have a distinct, time-specific sense, but even if so, "waste time" itself is just an SOP use of that sense. —RuakhTALK 01:35, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete, based on Ruakh's comments. --EncycloPetey 04:39, 23 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep. An idiomatic collocation, not because the meaning is not inferrable, but because this is the natural (un-guessable) way to express the idea in English. It is hard to translate; in French one usually "loses" time. Ƿidsiþ 16:19, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't get it. Did you see my comment? If you want to create a special sense for waste when its object is some form of time, I have no objection; but I don't see how waste time itself is unguessable, once you know that waste is used this way. (Put another way: if I come across the phrase “wasted hours”, how the heck am I supposed to know to look up “waste time”? I should be able to look up “waste” and see the relevant sense.) —RuakhTALK 17:07, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I saw it, and I agree with everything you say except the conclusion. Waste definitely has a specific sense in temporal constructions, but I don't see that as a reason to deletion the verb phrase under discussion. It may allow you to construe it as ‘sum-of-parts’, but this is still the kind of very common construction that I think users are entitled to be able to look up in its own right. Ƿidsiþ 20:50, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
Are you suggesting that we need to modify WT:CFI to reflect some kind user-oriented considerations or frequency considerations? DCDuring TALK 21:19, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
I couldn't care less about CFI. I have never looked at them. I know what I think I ought to be able to look up, and I always try to explain why. (In actual fact I think most people simply decide what they think and then search the letter of CFI to find a call to authority to support their view.) Ƿidsiþ 12:36, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Comment. Does "to waste time" mean any of to loaf, idle, dawdle, doss, slack or lollygag? If so, then I see two senses, yet I don't know how much sum-of-parts they are: (a) to loaf; to idle; to avoid productive activity; to wander about; to spend time chatting instead of working, and (b) to attempt a course of action that cannot achieve its purported aim; to labor in vain, or even specifically, to discuss in vain, to bring irrelevant points to a discussion. A third one could be construed: (c) to take away time and attention from another person. I may be quite mistaken; I think I have seen the term used in what seemed to be the sense (b), and surely in (c). --Dan Polansky 18:20, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I would say that "loafing", "idling", etc can be ways of "wasting one's own time", as can strenuous but unrewarding activity. "Wasting someone else's time" can also be done in many ways. I suppose that saying "To do X is to 'waste time'" often enough can lead to 'waste time' coming to assume a sense of 'do X'. DCDuring TALK 19:24, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

come off the rails

SoP. = [[come]] + [[off the rails]]. The idiomaticity seems to be in the figure "off the rails". DCDuring TALK 19:52, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete (or change to a redirect to off the rails). I agree with DC's analysis. -- WikiPedant 01:45, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Do not delete or redirect until it is exemplified at off the rails. DAVilla 04:06, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
This isn't even a very common collocation with off the rails, not appearing in COCA. 17/29 are forms of "go" (all 17 are figurative). Others have at most 3. Looking at b.g.c. it is apparent that "went off the rails" is 3 times more common that "came off the rails". Also the figurative sense of "went off the rails" seems to represent more than 3/4 of the usage whereas it represents only one third of the usage of "came off the ails". So, in figurative usage, the important verb to show in usage is is "go" with more than 6 times the usage of "come". DCDuring TALK 05:12, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Agree with DCD, off the rails is idiomatic, putting a verb in front of it isn't. Delete, Mglovesfun 18:34, 19 June 2009 (UTC)
Both "come" and "go" collocations now exemplified with once cite each at off the rails. DCDuring TALK 15:10, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Converted to redirect and exemplified. DCDuring TALK 15:12, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

pleasing to the eye

I don't see this as idiomatic. But perhaps to the eye and its coordinate terms are. DCDuring TALK 21:06, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

[[pleasing]] + [[to]] + [[the]] + [[eye]]. So delete. Mglovesfun 18:37, 19 June 2009 (UTC)
Weak delete. Admittedly, it's a commoner phrase than (say) "pleasing the eye" or "pleasant to the eye", but I don't see what else it could possibly mean. Equinox 19:00, 19 June 2009 (UTC)
I've never had any pleasing sensation in my eye, but even if you think it's this organ that receives the pleasure, shouldn't it be in the plural? DAVilla 06:23, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
I know it exists in the singular. COCA gives one hit for "pleasing to the eyes" vs. 55 for "pleasing to the eye". The term "easy on the eyes" is an expression in the plural which might merit examination. In the more general "ADJ to the eye(s) the plural is perhaps a bit more frequent relative to the singular than for a normal plural at 27 vs 172 for the singular. DCDuring TALK 10:58, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
delete. IMHO is a useless entry --Diuturno 06:33, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
DCDuring, how many phrases can you use containing to the eye? Which to me look a lot like [[to]] + [[the]] + [[eye]]. Mglovesfun 10:32, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
I could use a few, but more relevantly, COCA shows 69 different words in the ADJ slot for the 172 occurrences it has of "ADJ to the eye". "Pleasing to the eye" occurs 55 time, "visible" (21), "invisible" (12), "beautiful" (4), etc. DCDuring TALK 10:58, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
This doesn't look idiomatic to my eye. I've got a good eye for these things. I think it's demonstrably so, not just in the eye of the beholder.
Another case of a simple collocation: to and in can work with (the) eye (n. 2), while at doesn't. But we don't show collocations. Please change the guidelines. Michael Z. 2009-06-20 15:18 z
I had been thinking that to the eye might be idiomatic, but actually we were just missing the right sense at eye#Noun. Metonymous sense #2 was one I added. (also #3 and #5). DCDuring TALK 15:50, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Visual sense? (That's the sense added to eye.) Something pleases your visual sense? Not me: things please my nucleus accumbens. This entry has low value, per Diuturno, but seems to satisfy the CFI. That is unless we still have a sense missing at [[eye]]: something like "the mind/brain, viewed as the recipient of visual images". What other phrases have this sense of eye in them?msh210 22:23, 21 June 2009 (UTC)
Most people don't actually have a detailed model of the components of the system that gives them visual pleasure or the sense that enables them to "see" the seams on a fastball thrown by a professional pitcher (almost certainly physically impossible for anyone) and hit the ball with their bats. A very large portion of the uses of the term in print were created before the currently accepted versions were accepted. Most scientific theories need to be taken with a grain or more of salt. I would be happy with a rewording or addtiion of any suitable sense at "eye", but would advise against making it too dependent on one's interpretation of the current state of cognitive science.
But, as to "pleasing to the eye", it is apparently the most common of the "ADJ to the eye" collocations. Given that our mighty search engine apparently won't find a properly formatted usage example at to the eye or eye because of the bolding, we may as well dispense with strict application of WT:CFI in the interests of helping the user. DCDuring TALK 00:19, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't agree with having dictionary entries just to get around deficiences in the search mechanism. Rather, such problems should be a clear signal that the search mechanism needs improving. Equinox 00:22, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
It might be a matter of years for the improvement. If there is not some kind of "simple" switch already available to enable the search engine to ignore certain characters, any request may need to be voted on, at which point it joins a development queue. I had mentioned the problem at WT:GP, but have not elicited a response that makes me optimistic about prospects for change. Conrad Irwin and Robert Ullman are two of those have taken on similar issues. Perhaps Hippietrail? If you feel strongly about this, express yourself at GP. We might eventually get some understanding of what would be involved in any change and go from there. DCDuring TALK 00:38, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
UPDATE: The search problem that prevented "pleasing to the eye" from being found at eye seems to have been resolved. One less argument for keeping this adjective entry. DCDuring TALK 21:35, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
No harm in keeping. I think we should get rid of the "visual sense" sense of eye, though. (Or merge it with the sense "The ability to notice what others might miss".)msh210 00:25, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Compared to other OneLook dictionaries we are missing senses at "eye". DCDuring TALK 00:38, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

truss mi

I don't know Jamaican Creole, but this looks like truss + mi (trust me) to me. A Jamaican Creole entry for "mi" exists, but not for "truss". --Hekaheka 12:48, 19 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete, totally SoP. Mglovesfun 18:36, 19 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes, delete. Equinox 19:00, 19 June 2009 (UTC)
Deleted SemperBlotto 21:34, 19 June 2009 (UTC)


A few issues here.

  1. Seems to be a registered trademark, so it needs a capital letter
  2. Neologism (or protologism)
  3. The external link seems to be 'spam', it's not a link to a quotation, but to a company's website.
  • Delete, unless it can be verified as a common noun. Mglovesfun 10:38, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
    • Google books has 15 hits, one of which seems to be a proper noun, one is Sardu (a local language in Italy) and the final thirteen seem to be typos for resuming. Mglovesfun 10:43, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
      • Speedy delete by SemperBlotto, presumably he deleted it before I started this debate. Mglovesfun 21:19, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

con intenzione

senza intenzione

Literally with intention and without intention. We do the same thing in French to avoid really long, awkward sounding adverbs (avec intention, sans intention). Not idiomatic whatsoever, AFAICT. Mglovesfun 07:32, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

I think these are set phrases, unlike "with intention". Keep. —Stephen 11:09, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
They were created by Barmar (talkcontribs), who's a native Italian speaker and a prolific contributor here, and I'd be wary of deleting them just because they seem SOP to us. I'd consider the corresponding Hebrew בכוונה \ בְּכַוָּנָה (b'khavaná, with intent) to be idiomatic (and in fact, I created an entry for it a while back) for reasons that wouldn't necessarily be obvious to a non–Hebrew speaker. (This is canceled out by the fact that it's also not necessarily obvious to a non–Hebrew speaker that it's a two-word phrase, בְּ־ (b'-, with) + כוונה \ כַּוָּנָה (kavaná, intent), so it's not likely to get RFD'd.) At the very least, we should ask Barmar for her thoughts. —RuakhTALK 00:57, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
No opinion about Italian. In French, I feel that we don't use avec intention (we rather use intentionnellement or volontairement). We don't use sans intention either (we rather use sans le vouloir or involontairement), except in sans intention de ... (especially in legal terminology). Lmaltier 16:21, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
In French, both terms are actually used, especially -but not exclusively- in the legal domain. The meaning may then differ from the synonyms you give. For example, "aider sans intention" (= with no particular purpose) has not the same meaning as "aider involontairement" (= involuntarily). OTOH, "avec intention" is indeed similar to intentionnellement, but it exists on its own. I'd ask a native Italian speaker before deleting this entry. — Xavier, 23:38, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

virtual collaboration

Non-idiomatic sum of zzz. Equinox 21:35, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

US American

This and some alternative spellings (hyphen, periods) doesn't seem like a single unit to me. It just seems like attributive use of US with American. If we keep it, it needs usage notes.

It's the demonym associated to USA, isn't it? It's a good reason to keep it. Lmaltier 16:06, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
It might be a demonym, but is not used by residents or citizens of the US in reference to themselves. Such folks refer to themselves as "Americans", as in: "I'm proud to be an American." I don't believe that any other country has "America" as part of its name, so the fact that citizens of the US have appropriated this term as preferred demonym doesn't put them in dispute with citizens of another country. But, because there are other uses for the term "American", "American" is modified by "US" to contrast citizens of the US (Or is that non-Latin citizens of the US?) with others who use "American", ie "Latin Americans". "Latin American" seems to have more of a claim as an entry because Latin America is a proper noun for which "Latin American" is a derived noun and adjective. "US America" is not a term that I have heard or read and is not plausibly an etymon of "US American".
To me an analogous case is "Northern Italian". "Northern" is just a contrastive adjective modifying Italian. DCDuring TALK 17:40, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete if DCDuring is right about the use cases, which I think is likely. To me it's "an American from the US" (contrasting with a [North or South] American from elsewhere). Equinox 23:04, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

The reason this came up was a heated argument on Wikipedia that "US American" is not a legitimate English term. That in of itself demonstrates that it is not a simple phrase like "northern Italian", which no-one would even think to take issue with. Also, the argument from ignorance above is hardly convincing: that's what all the citations are for, to show the breadth of usage, though, granted, it is certainly an uncommon term. Equinox at least finds the phrase intuitive, as I do. However, several editors on Wikipedia (at the w:names for U.S. citizens article) said that it is grammatically incorrect, because "US" cannot be used attributively. They even cited the use of the phrase by that Miss America contestant to claim that only someone who was incoherent would use it. If it were not for their insistence that "US Americans" is not proper English, when it's something I use myself, I would not have bothered to create these pages. —kwami 14:44, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

It is obviously perfectly acceptable English. It clearly has good use in the contrastive situation. It is also likely to annoy some people who view themselves as and prefer to be called Americans. Sometimes it might even be used for the purpose of annoying them. There may be an argument that I can't see at the moment that it should be included. [[See WT:IDIOM. Controversy alone is not sufficient reason for inclusion, though it is good reason to carefully consider whether the term should be included and to make sure the usage note is well crafted.
If the Northern Italian analogy doesn't speak to you, what about "GDR German"/"DDR German" and "FRG German"/"BRD German? All are prima facie attestable collocations. I don't think we'd include them. DCDuring TALK 15:29, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
US can't be used attributively? what about US Army or US Navy? Anyway, delete as it's either sum of parts or not used, quite possibly both. Mglovesfun (t) 15:42, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
Even if this is deleted, I think we might consider:
  1. Organizing and formatting the citations in their proper location (exact spelling) in Citation space.
  2. Having an Appendix on approximately the same subject as the above-mentioned WP article, w:Names for U.S. citizens.
I have no idea how the WP article will turn out, but the NOR policy as applied there seems very limiting with respect to the use of terms as quoted terms. The limited type of OR that we do here is almost certainly essential for us to avoid copyright violations while having a comprehensive resource. The descriptivist lexicographic stance seems a great fit with NPOV. The combination seems to put us at an advantage relative to WP in accommodating certain language subject matter. Should we Transwiki the article? I would favor getting the version most inclusive of terms and do so now. Should we? Or should we wait until the article is more complete? DCDuring TALK 17:13, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
"It is obviously perfectly acceptable English." Well, it is to me, which is why I was at a loss when people argued that it was ungrammatical. (I expect they would argue that "DDR German" is also not a legitimate term, and for the same reasons.) As for "US Army", that came up, and the answer was that it's valid because it's an abbreviation of "United States Army", whereas "US American" is not an abbreviation of *"United States American". The impassioned debate there shows that, as obviously acceptable as this is to you and me, it is just as obviously unacceptable to others. That's why I think it needs a place in Wiktionary. As for Mglovesfun saying it should be deleted because it's not used, again, that's what the citations are for! kwami 07:30, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
Acceptability as English is one thing. Suitability for any specific purpose is another. I remain uncertain that the term is includable as an entry at Wiktionary. I really have no opinion about what role, if any, the term would have at WP.
But I was much more impressed with the vehemence with which the term "US American" was opposed at WP than with the logic. I was also surprised that they actually believe that they have special insight into linguistic correctness, so that they knew what was correct without any need to justify their position or indeed recognition (or acknowledgment, anyway) that it was a position. It isn't that we don't have conflicts. See WT:RFD#patriotism for an example. DCDuring TALK 00:43, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

on television

Just like on stage, on the phone, on radio, on the air (see #on the air below), on the web, on the computer, on YouTube, on The Daily Show, on Oprah. DCDuring TALK 14:53, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

And on the radio. Delete the nominated word, and see my comments at Wiktionary:Tea room#on the radio. But I think on the air has more to it than the rest. Equinox 14:55, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Are you on steroids?? No seriously, delete as sum of parts. I suggest we put on the air in its own section as I too think that it's idiomatic. Mglovesfun 21:25, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep on steroids, of course, as idiomatic; delete on the radio and on television as SoP; not sure about the other bluelinks under consideration (on the phone, on the air, and on the computer, and also off the phone and the redlinked off the air, though I'm tending toward saying to delete on the computer even though it does claim idiomaticity and have two senses).msh210 22:50, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
For me, the phrase-as-idiom is weakened by the plausibility of constructs like "she's on her computer", "whose computer is he on?". Equinox 23:02, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Good point. Same for on the phone, I suppose, but certainly not for on television or on the radio.msh210 23:08, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
But you could have (for instance) "There were ten televisions in the shop, all tuned to different channels. I saw Bob Holness on one of them." "Oh? Which television was he on?" It's not the same as the generic on television (broadcast by the medium) but it suggests that things can be on a television, i.e. it's the default preposition for appearing on a contraption that conveys broadcast media. Equinox 23:13, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
P.S. on acid is (tediously) often used to describe a wacky version of something, probably more often than on steroids. Equinox 23:00, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Do language learners really have more trouble than definition writers with prepositions? We know that native speakers rarely have much trouble at all picking a reasonable preposition that other native speakers understand even when something new is involved. I would hazard a guess that:
  1. medium (performer): "on (the) stage" > "screen" > "radio" > "television" > "cable/satellite".
  2. scheduled performance: "on {the) agenda/card/bill/schedule/program" > "[radio program]" > "[television program]" > "[radio/TV station]", "[channel]".
  3. two-way medium: "on the phone" > "ham radio set" > "internet".
  4. device: [two-way medium device] > "computer" > similar device [gameboy, etc]
There seems to an evolution/extension from more physical to less physical senses in easy stages and then by analogy. But the last stages are rather distinct in some ways and hard to combine in a definition. Is it really hard for a language learner to figure this out? In many ways the elaborate definitions of prepositions such as MW and OED have seem more confusing than helpful to me, but I'm not the target audience. Thoughts? DCDuring TALK 00:18, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

Yet another example where we need to show common collocations, but we don't have a way to, so it becomes a debate about including a sum-of-parts term which meets none of our formal requirements. That's it. See WT:BP#CollocationsMichael Z. 2009-06-26 02:22 z

I'm assuming that you would want the collocation(s) at [[television]]. Different prepositions would go with different senses. "In television" means working in the industry. "On television" means being exhibited via the medium of television. "To television" works with industry and medium. Wouldn't a collocations header require a complete repetition of each sense at each PoS? Otherwise, we would need entries for each collocation of preposition and noun.
MW 1913 and Online handles some collocations by putting some as in-line usage examples that are not full sentences. Take a look at dead#Adjective where I inserted some of the most common collocations I found at COCA to illustrate some less common senses I added (which would also benefit from someone else's eye). DCDuring TALK 03:12, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

in a bit

"in a" can be followed by a vast number of formal, informal, and slang terms (and creative vulgarities) indicating periods of time. Very few seem idiomatic to me. There is some value to having them in an alternative format, whether or not they are kept as entries in their own right.

Accordingly, I am beginning Appendix:Collocations of in which has nearly 500 collocations of [[in]] with nouns (sing/pl; bare, with "a", with "the"), but in an extremely crude form. See also Talk:in#Collocations. I would like to make it ultimately look like the multiply sortable ISO language code tables at Wikipedia. DCDuring TALK 23:08, 27 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes to carefully collecting collocations, but delete this sum-of-parts phrase. In a bit, after a bit, for a bit, just a bit are just like in a minute, in a second, or in a while. A bit n. (6) is a period of time, but even without this, in prep. (5) refers to a period of time, so it can be used with any amount: in a little, in a smidge(on), in a whit, in an iota, etc. Michael Z. 2009-06-28 22:24 z

Delete for the exact same reasons I voted to delete "in a jiffy" (which was ultimately kept). Equinox 13:59, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

private sector housing

This doesn't seem to be anything other than SoP. It is also without citations or dictionary references. DCDuring TALK 07:09, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

It seems to refer to housing in the private sector. I can't see any lexical merit to it, delete. Mglovesfun (talk) 09:31, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete. Equinox 13:57, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Deleted, per all. Mglovesfun (talk) 18:01, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

on the air

Separated from the propositions above. My argument is:

On the air can only be figurative. The only plausible SoP use for on the air I can find is "the ozone layer is on the air", and I think in reality you'd say on top of to avoid confusion. Also, you can't replace on the with anything and still have it mean "in the act of broadcasting", so in other words, strong keep as idiomatic and figurative. Mglovesfun (talk) 09:36, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Comment. Re: "you can't replace on the with anything": That's not true. If nothing else, "on air" alone is quite well attested; google books:"go on air" has many relevant hits. Likewise "off (the) air", which is the opposite of "on (the) air". Nonetheless, you can probably make a case that "on the air" is the primary use of this sense of the noun "air", and that the other uses are derived from it, in which case it might make sense to include it. (Most monolingual dictionaries cover phrases inside the entry for their most salient word, e.g. defining on the air inside the entry for air, so they don't have to worry too much about how idiomatic it is and how rigid its phrasing is. Perhaps the proposed "collocations" header will help address this issue somewhat.) —RuakhTALK 23:09, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
That the sense of air is figurative is not relevant to whether the term meets WT:CFI. If we don't have the sense of "air" that goes with "over the air", "on the air", "off the air", that is a weakness of air#Noun. Interestingly though, I'm not sure that that sense of "air" appears as a subject, though it may be used attributively ("air time"). DCDuring TALK 02:03, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

get on the computer

on the computer is already up for deleting, putting get in front of virtually anything forms a 'verb', strong delete. Mglovesfun (talk) 09:40, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Equinox 13:59, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Two weeks without a vote, deleted. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:46, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

off the computer

Per on the computer. Not idiomatic. Mglovesfun (talk) 09:41, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Equinox 16:57, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Exactly which sense(s) of "off" apply? (Just to make sure that off gets improved. I definitely don't think this should require a computer-specific sense, but wording might need adjustment.) —This unsigned comment was added by DCDuring (talkcontribs) at 18:10, 29 June 2009 (UTC).
"In a direction away from"; and of course get off. Equinox 19:33, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
That's what I mean. We don't have the appropriate sense at off#Preposition. I don't see how "off" can be construed as off#Adverb. See MWOnline which has 4 main senses (six at lowest level, including subsenses) compared to our 2 (perhaps 1). Prepositions seem to be among the hardest things to present well. (For example, which of their 6 senses/senses has to do with addiction to computers or drugs?) Our contributors find their contribution to the meaning of a phrase hard to identify. I find them sometimes hard to even notice. DCDuring TALK 21:13, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
I have added 4 senses to off, all of which seem to work as predicates (so as not to get all jumbled with phrasal verb discussions). The "not on" sense seems the best for this. There may be senses at on#preposition missing or senses there that might belong at off#Preposition. See #off the phone et al below. DCDuring TALK 01:49, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Gone Mglovesfun (talk) 21:49, 25 July 2009 (UTC)


No google books hits, 8 general google hits (counting us). I'm not sure why you'd want to deconvolve something after you've already done so. RJFJR 17:11, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Well, someone or something might reconvolve it or it just might up and reconvolve itself. It is only through the triumph of engineering over theory that we don't have any significant usage of "reredeconvolve". DCDuring TALK 18:11, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete as protologism. Mglovesfun (talk) 18:16, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
Keep. It gets enough Google Scholar hits to warrant a full RFV period. (For it to meet the CFI, attenstion-wise, only one of those hits needs to be from a peer-reviewed academic journal. I'm not positive, but it looks like two are. Plus, despite what you say, there's actually one Google Books hit — I'm not sure why you don't see it — for a total of probably three durably archived cites.) —RuakhTALK 22:59, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
Sorry. When I saw the one entry I misread it as a near miss that google was offering for a related word. RJFJR 01:11, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Schlieffenův plán

The term has its encyclopedic value, but linguistically it’s just a combination of two words, nothing idiomatic. --Mormegil 18:19, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

If you can explain what the two words mean, we can comment a lot better. Cheers, Mglovesfun (talk) 18:30, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

There is really nothing interesting there… Schlieffen Plan is just “a plan by [Alfred von] Schlieffen”. The same in the Czech version: “Schlieffenův plán” = “a plan by Schlieffen” (“Schlieffenův” is just a genitive (possessive case) form of “Schlieffen”). --Mormegil 18:39, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Schlieffen is a German surname, and plán is plan. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schlieffen_Plan Mutante

Delete  Specific entity, encyclopedic. This isn't a word meaning “a plan by Alfred von Schlieffen,” it's the Czech name for the Schlieffen Plan. Michael Z. 2009-06-28 22:14 z

Delete, as above - Schlieffen's plan. Mglovesfun (talk) 07:20, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete. When I created the entry, which should have meant W:Schlieffen_Plan, I did not realize that, while not a sum-of-parts, the term refers to a specific entity and does not satisfy the criteria for inclusion of specific entities, as specified at WT:CFI#Names of specific entities. --Dan Polansky 13:23, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Deleted per creator. Equinox 08:01, 3 July 2009 (UTC)

in so far as

rfd-sense Adverb "With respect to". The usage example shows it as a conjunction. Other dictionaries show it as a conjunction. I have added alt spelling of insofar as. It predates the other spelling which is dominant at least in the US.

I can't read this as an adverb, but perhaps a better grammarian could see it as one in some use. [[insofar]] is shown as an adverb. DCDuring TALK 02:26, 29 June 2009 (UTC)


Rfd-redundant Sense 2, "used in expressing ratios of units" is just a specific case of sense 1, "for each". For example "miles per gallon" is just "miles for each gallon". Examples of this usage should be given with sense1, but I don't think it is a separate sense. Thryduulf 12:12, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

It's not exactly the same as "for each", is it? You can go "sixty miles per hour" even if you're only driving for a few minutes. In other words, I agree with you that they seem to be the same sense, but I don't agree that the current definition of sense 1 is sufficient to cover the examples under sense 2. I'm not sure if they should be merged. —RuakhTALK 12:21, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

double positive

This is a sort of joke entry, isn't it? Equinox 13:56, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

  • Move to RfV. Jokiness had better not be a criterion for deletion. It would kill an important motivation to add entries and citations. IMO we need to see whether we can find more citations in support of the linguistic "double positive" concept that are uses not mentions. DCDuring TALK 14:13, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

I cannot find any evidence of "double positive" being a linguistic term, as claimed in the entry. Linguistically it appears to be a SoP, as in this example:

A linguistics professor was lecturing to his class one day. "In English," he said, "A double negative forms a positive. In some languages, such as Russian, a double negative is still a negative. However, there is no language wherein a double positive can form a negative." - A voice from the back of the room piped up, "Yeah, right." Laurie Rozakis, A complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Well. I'd say delete --Hekaheka 17:26, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
AFAICT, the rationale of negative verification only applies to the RfV process. Claims of unsuccessful efforts of any number of contributors would not per se warrant deletion on the time frame of RfD. Nor does jokiness. RfV invites advocates of the entry to do some work, which both educates them and may improve Wiktionary by allowing us to have supported entries not covered by other dictionaries. Why rush to delete? DCDuring TALK 18:36, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
I agree: for the definition we have ("phrase in which two positive words used together counteract to give a negative meaning"), RFV would be more appropriate.​—msh210 19:30, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Can someone give an example of a double positive that's actually negative? --Hekaheka 21:51, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Only in that jokey sense in English. Or perhaps "Yes, yes" used as a brush-off actually meaning "No". It would seem to usually be at the level of pragmatics. The jokey sense seems designed to get people out of the box within which "double negatives" are forbidden.
I saw "double positive" used linguistically to refer to the grammar of imperatives in some language. "Double positive" is also used to mean "twice positive" or "doubly positive" in various contexts. DCDuring TALK 22:17, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Move to RFV per DCDuring. Mglovesfun (talk) 18:05, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

ex-gay movement

Note: moved from RFV. --RuakhTALK 15:03, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

At best this is a Sum of Parts. While certainly an encyclopedic topic, unless we plan to include every socio-political topic of interest it would be biased to include those which are being promoted. (e.g. gay movement, euthanasia movement, bicycle movmeent, John Birch Society, la leche league &c.) - Amgine/talk 14:54, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Compare Wiktionary:Requests_for_deletion#hippie_movement. Equinox 14:58, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete per nom. (BTW, I've added a usage note to [[ex-gay]] that could probably use other editors' eyes, if anyone has a chance.) --RuakhTALK 15:17, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Honestly, this should be deleted. If it hadn't been put to RfD and I had stumbled across it I would have deleted it outright. So, Delete. (Also, Ruakh, I like your usage note. It makes me happy.) —Neskaya kanetsv 07:05, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
Delete per all. That's why we have movement (sense 4). Mglovesfun (talk) 18:03, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Gone.​—msh210 15:44, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

in order

rfd-sense: "complete, finished" as in "The doctor told him to put/get his affairs in order." Seems to mean "organized", "tidy". IMO, to "put/get one's affairs in order" (to prepare for the end of life as one has known it) is an idiom whose presence here would eliminate any need for this as a separate sense. DCDuring TALK 16:29, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

As I already commented on DC's talk page: delete unless somebody can find another sense for it beyond this single idiom. Equinox 19:32, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
The idiom is at get one's affairs in order and put one's affairs in order. Forms of each get around 20 hits at COCA. DCDuring TALK 20:57, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
well there is "all in order", "everything's in order", meaning "correct", "as it should be", "acceptable". Thryduulf 19:28, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't think one can say "It may be untidy, but at least it's in order." (meaning "complete"}
MWOnline seems to believe that the only idiomatic sense is "appropriate". That would be because all the others flow directly from the sense of "in" as in in a row, in a circle, in line (also possibly "in ruins", "in disarray", "in a shambles"). So we should look at our senses at order to make sure that both they and this entry are complete.
There seems to be a sense about parliamentary (meeting) procedure that AHD and RHU have. DCDuring TALK 20:51, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
I haven't either of those dictionaries at hand, but I assume that it's the opposite of out of order, which is at least a phrase I know (with this sense)?​—msh210 17:02, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I think they are antonyms. But is certainly the same sense of "order". I don't think that alone would make it non-idiomatic. I don't think it is as common as some other collocations of "order" in a deliberative-body-procedure sense, "point of order" etc. DCDuring TALK 18:44, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep, well-known term and entirely valid. Stifle 14:59, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
No one is saying that it is not "valid". The question is whether its meanings include a specific narrow sense of "complete", "finished" that is distinguishable from "neat", "tidy" (which should probably be extended in the direction of "correct", as Thryduulf suggests). And, further, if there is such a sense, does it occur anywhere except in the "[get/put] one's affairs in order" idiom. We don't want to waste users' time by having repetitive or overlapping definitions.
One cannot use "in order" indiscriminately as a synonym for "complete". When one tells a person about to die to "put his affairs in order" one does not mean that he has to obtain and file his own death certificate. DCDuring TALK 18:35, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete per DCDuring's & Equinox's analysis.​—msh210 17:02, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Maybe the right sense is more like "ready, prepared"? Check out google books:"getting everything in order for"; I don't think it always means just "tidy, neat; organized" (though that does seem to be part of it). —RuakhTALK 18:27, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, definitely. That certainly fits the "put one's affairs in order" sense much better! DCDuring TALK 18:39, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I have added the parliamentary sense and inserted idiomatic tags there and at the "appropriate" sense. Also added "ready", "prepared" at the "neat", "tidy" sense. Please feel free to split that one. DCDuring TALK 01:59, 2 July 2009 (UTC)


rfd-sense: defined strictly in a fictional universe sense. Doesn't have citations that support any other sense. COCA has plenty of hits for may the Force be with you. I would expect that there is some definition that could be written and attested using no more than one cite of "may the Force be with you" that did not seem like it was written by a LucasFilm publicist or Starwars fanchild. DCDuring TALK 18:49, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

At the local book store, in the men's room there is a note on the garbage can that says "do not compress by hand" under this a joker has written "use the force instead". This is a use of the term force in colloquial English. RJFJR 01:18, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Absolutely. All we need are:
  1. a definition and
  2. evidence consistent with our attestation standards (with the term capitalized).
We already have the term in lower case. I'll be happy to insert an rfdef to get some in our crack corps of definers to compete to provide some good definitions. DCDuring TALK 01:25, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
google books:"god or the force" pulls up many irrelevant hits, but also a fair number that seem potentially relevant. Some explicitly mention Star Wars — I'm not sure if that's an argument for or against keeping the sense — and some seem to be using "the Force" unhumorously and unselfconsciously (much as one might write "the Holy One" or "the Father") — but a few, such as this one, seem to fall in the narrow but perfect band where they probably mean the Star Wars Force, but don't say so explicitly. But I don't know how to make certain of that. (There are probably other such searches we can try; "god or the force" was just my first thought.) —RuakhTALK 03:18, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Are you saying that the quote is
  1. broad-sense attributive use of "the Force" to support the fictional universe Proper noun;
  2. evidence of its use as a synonym for an abstract deity; or
  3. evidence of something else?
I'm not expecting to be up to this one. It's just not as much worth the effort as some other causes in which I've been taking an interest. I'm not finding this as much in my current range of interests as collocations and prepositions. DCDuring TALK 03:56, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I'm saying I think it's your option #1, but I'm not sure how to make certain of that. (Some of the other hits do fall into your option #2, though.) Re: being up to it: Totally understandable. No pressure. :-)   —RuakhTALK 18:54, 1 July 2009 (UTC)


Nominated by User:Tooironic for speedy deletion, it seems to merit a discussion. Mglovesfun (talk) 05:31, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

sum of parts. Delete. -- A-cai 10:38, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Two weeks without a vote, deleted. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:39, 13 July 2009 (UTC)


Nominated by User:Tooironic for speedy deletion, it seems to merit a discussion. Mglovesfun (talk) 05:32, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

sum of parts. Delete. -- A-cai 10:39, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Two weeks without a vote, deleted. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:41, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

this morning

this evening

These seem to be instances of the form [determiner] + [temporal noun] = adverbial phrase. Why have it? Can't translators live with black links? DCDuring TALK 16:42, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

...or links like "this morning"?​—msh210 16:54, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. That's what I should have said. DCDuring TALK 17:18, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete; I think the "sum of parts" argument is overused, but in this case it's about right. Putting "this" in front of any old noun, even a temporal one, does not make a new "adverb". Mglovesfun (talk) 18:01, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Imo we can't delete this without adding the relevant sense s.v. [[this]]. I'm not sure what that would be: "of the present day"?​—msh210 16:05, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Don't we have a sense like "near"? Whether the meaning is "the preceding morning" "the morning about to or now occurring", it is a proximate one. The transfer from space to time seems to work for lots of words (like prepositions). Alternatively, how many of "this + [time word]" expressions would you like to include: this epoch? this Brumaire? I could understand a phrasebook inclusion rationale, though I have never understood the limits of this nor that there was much indication that it is used. DCDuring TALK 17:04, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
(If that was addressed to me specifically, then please note that I never said I think this should be kept, and I don't. I merely think we should add to [[this]].) True, this evening can I think mean "the preceding evening": "He helped me fix my car this evening", spoken in the morning, I think is fine in some dialects, though not in mine. (Do those BYU corpora allow for searching by presence in a clause containing a verb in a specific tense?) To me, it means "this coming or present evening". Certainly we have a "near" sense: "The (thing) here (used in indicating something or someone nearby)". But I think we should have a separate sense for this, as it's temporal rather than spatial: I was even looking for it there and didn't find it! (Of course, I may be dumber than the average reader.)​—msh210 17:30, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
I wasn't sure what you were suggesting. Yes, I agree. At first I thought that it was always "the next", then I thought "nearest", but it defines something more like what you say. The contrastive phrases like "this coming month" and "this past month" indicate some of the ambiguity in how "this month" is used around the "turn of the month".
  • Keep, idiomatic and potentially difficult to translate. Ƿidsiþ 16:13, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

in order to

This is in order#Adverb (thanks, Ruakh) + to#Particle. I propose that it be replaced with a redirect to in order#Adverb, which already contains a corresponding usage example. If search worked better the redirect would not be necessary. Please note the numerous translations. (I am also doing the same thing for in order for, which does require any deletion.) DCDuring TALK 01:45, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

The writers of other dictionaries seem to see some lexical merit in in order to. It is normally listed and explained as a separate line under order. As we do not have that practice, but favor separate entries where other dictionaries have these "sub-entries", we should keep this. Keeping would also be a favor to translators, as the translations are normally not as easy as in+order+to. If not convinced, check the translations-table of in order to.--Hekaheka 09:46, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
The following OneLook dictonaries have a line for "in order to" at their entry for "order", where it appears next to "in order" or "in order that": Websters 1913, RHU, AHD, MWOnline, The ones that apparently do not are Collins, Compact Oxford, Cambridge, WNW. Longmans DCE also has in order to.
If this were deleted, the redirect would seem essential to make sure that users found the right entry. The section redirect would take them to the correct part of the right entry. At that entry a translator could consider that the collocation "in order for" was related to "in order to", based on the usage examples. If this were deleted, I would think it highly desirable to move the translations at "in order to" to the correct sense of "in order (adverb)", but as TTBCs.
The entry at "in order to" now has various links to other terms like "in order that", which also provide some reference to translators. DCDuring TALK 12:00, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
One of the odd things about the term is that the "in order" is inessential. It emphasizes an idea to purpose that is already in "to#Particle". It also has some value in reducing ambiguity in connection with phrasal verbs with "for" and "to". DCDuring TALK 12:22, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Why make it so complicated, when we can simply keep in order to? We have entries for all kinds of terms derived from the word order, like just what the doctor ordered, get one's affairs in order, put one's affairs in order, which are much more easily both understood and translated by their parts! --Hekaheka 12:26, 2 July 2009 (UTC)`
It is a question of of which complication influenced by consideration of change vs no change. We put idioms in because there are aspects of the meaning that might be unexpected. Why have a monolingual dictionary at all? It's usually easier to figure out the meaning from context. The point is that, once someone has stumbled over some odd term, we need to give them good help. It is important that the user find an entry that gives help so we should support that need. If search were better we wouldn't even need a redirect, the reader would find "in order to" in related or derived terms at "order" and/or "in order" as well as in idioms using it and even quotations using it.
I think that it is somewhat misleading to translators and others to have a full entry at in order to because it is to easy for them to miss the underlying grammar. I don't know how many languages have:
  1. a particle just like "to" used in many infinitive constructions including those indicating purpose
  2. a particle only used for infinitives, no particle for purpose
  3. a particle for purpose, no particle for infinitives
  4. two different particles
Of course, there are more basic questions of whether the language has something like an infinitive used for this purpose.
Is it important for the translator to realize that "in order" is inessential to the meaning but useful to reduce ambiguity? Should that be part of one of the translations the translators offer?
This gets to the question of how many different purposes Wiktionary can serve well. One person's nuance is another person's complication. DCDuring TALK 13:49, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
One more point of view to consider, and then I give up: given the thousands of SoP's we have - what harm does it do, if we keep this damn thing? --Hekaheka 17:38, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Only that it might be misleading. DCDuring TALK 18:05, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
  • It might be equally as misleading to delete it, because the grammatical analysis isn't as simple as it seems to the modern eye. See the tea room. Uncle G 14:01, 10 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep In many languages it's translated as a single word. Anatoli 23:52, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
And grammatically this is a particle, like to, emphasized ? DCDuring TALK 00:16, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I see now. I missed the in order entry. I will abstain for the moment. Anatoli 00:44, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

rain stopped play

cited as a sentence or clause. cricket. DCDuring TALK 21:13, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

Why are you RFDing exactly? Equinox 22:13, 4 July 2009 (UTC)
Not an idiom; Not a proverb. We may as well have: he jumps he shoots he scores. rain (sense 1) + stopped (sense 3) + play (sense 2). DCDuring TALK 23:45, 4 July 2009 (UTC)
It's not always sense 2 of play, because this can be used for any event being stopped. You might say "I was going to take my kid to the park, but rain stopped play": it's a phrase taken from cricket, but it has wider usage. (Most of our existing citations, unfortunately, are cricket-specific.) Equinox 23:57, 4 July 2009 (UTC)
I am reporting the sense as someone entered it. If it were used in cricket in some peculiar way, there might be a case for it being idiomatic. But it doesn't seem to be. You are making an a fortiori case that it should be deleted. The more valid combinations there are the less meritorious the entry. DCDuring TALK 00:09, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
Well, first of all it is the standard form used in cricket (not, as far as I know, any other sport) for this happening: the Oxford Dictionary of Abbreviations bothers to list rsp for rain stopped play (compare lbw = leg before wicket) as scoresheet notation. A 2002 book mentions the phrase qua phrase: "Some jovially believe that the phrase rain stopped play actually heralds the arrival of the English sporting summer." So perhaps that's a sporting "idiom". Secondly, it's sometimes humorously used for things where sense 2 of play doesn't apply at all, e.g. the last citation we have already (looking for spoor is hardly "play"), or this one: "A bevy of nymphs were scheduled to pop out of caves to greet the Queen, but rain stopped play" (1960). Equinox 00:19, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
It's used in baseball, too, albeit possibly less formulaicly. I have no problem with there being an abbreviation for rsp, just as I don't for lol. The abbreviation is only makeweight evidence for the expanded form. let's play ball is a similar sort of phrase in baseball. Many oft-repeated phrases in popular culture are used in more mundane contexts to bring some interest into the situation and the crowd goes wild (cheering the way I have skewered your arguments). but seriously folks, I think this is a case of pragmatics, rather than new meaning. DCDuring TALK 01:04, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
  1. (idiomatic) Indicating that an event was stopped or suspended due to rain or other inclement weather.
  • How is this idiomatic, then? Yes it is a cricketing term but can easily be understood from rain + stopped + play. leg before wicket is much too ambiguous to be deleted, but I can't say the same for rain stopped play. So overall delete but I want to hear some other arguments before making a full vote. Mglovesfun (talk) 11:44, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
  • I agree with the above. There's no idiom here, and the fact that a phrase is abbreviated doesn't automatically make that phrase an idiom. Equinox, all that there is in that sentence is another sense of play, and possibly a pun on the meaning of performance. And that play was stopped by rain. Uncle G 17:15, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

tell the truth

tell lies and tell a lie both got deleted. I can only see [[tell]] [[the]] [[truth]] to mean "tell the truth". Mglovesfun (talk) 11:38, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

At OneLook, we are the only dictionary with an entry. DCDuring TALK 11:46, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
To tell you the truth, I can't make up my mind. I'm not sure there isn't an idiom here, though I don't think as a fully conjugating form. If it is an idiom, it would be like to make a long story short/long story short. We have entries that are conversational directives. I'm just not sure that this one needs an entry. DCDuring TALK 12:18, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
"To tell you the truth" seems less in need of an entry than tell you the truth (like long story short) DCDuring TALK 12:24, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
To tell the truth, I know this phrase from Czech and it strikes me as a non-SOP, meaning "to be frank", "to be honest", or "frankly", being placed at the first position in the sentence like last but not least. But the headword should possibly better be "to tell the truth", as "to " here means "in order to", rather than just showing an infinitive, or that is at least how I read it. Czech translation: "Popravdě řečeno", "Abych řekl pravdu".--Dan Polansky 17:28, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, I think the English usage is very similar. As entered, the phrase is a verb, which seems wrong. I can't quite hear any form except infinitive and, possibly, gerund. I believe that it is more like a synonym of the adverb frankly, but only used appositively, bracketed by punctuation. It is some kind of comment on the following statement or the entire following conversation. At COCA, there are 990 uses of to tell the truth. Most of them seemed very literal SoP. But of that group, 206 were bracketed by punctuation. They seem to represent the widespread usage in question. Even more common is to tell you the truth (416). Bracketed by punctuation, tell the truth gets 97 hits, tell you the truth gets 28, tell ya the truth gets 2.
I am not at all sure that these terms all meet WT:CFI. The forms with "to" seem SoP to me. Moreover, there are numerous other forms of equivalent conversational use: "to be frank", "speaking frankly", "to be honest", etc. All seem SoP, non-idiomatic. DCDuring TALK 18:17, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Forms without the "to", they seem more likely to be non-SoP.
I am going to convert the RfD to rfd-sense at the verb. I think I will enter under the idiom PoS, a non-gloss definition. Getting similar treatment will be tell you the truth. I think the presence or absence of "you" makes a difference, though I'm not sure exactly what. In both cases I will include the form with "to" in the sense line as a non-wikilinked defining term. DCDuring TALK 18:17, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Okay, provided "to be frank", "to tell you to truth", "to be honest", "speaking frankly", "frankly speaking" are all only set phrases rather than idioms and thus not kept, is there a place at Wiktionary, say an appendix, to which they could be filed? Thus, when I (or any other user) want to know what set phrases are synonymous to "to tell you the truth", I look into that appendix instead of in the main Wiktionary space. What if I create an appendix "Appendix:English set phrases"? --Dan Polansky 10:01, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
I wouldn't object to that, but I'd like to hear from others about which of these should be in principal namespace. DCDuring TALK 14:55, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Rename to to tell you the truth, this seems (somewhat) idiomatic, whereas tell the truth is a verb. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:08, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
After the renaming I would add tell the truth and tell you the truth because each appear as standalone terms. The are readily attestable and are not quite SoP, IMO. In this idiomatic use they are not inflecting verbs. DCDuring TALK 15:41, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

to be honest

I have inserted this phrase here out of sequence because many of the same arguments apply as with tell the truth. DCDuring TALK 18:23, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Weak keep, be honest and to be honest aren't interchangeable. Be honest is an imperative and to be honest is used to give emphasis. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:08, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
In this case, "be honest" is not used in the same bracketed way as to be honest. "To be honest" just seems to be a standard phrasal construction to me. As a native speaker, I am less naturally sensitive to what is or is not idiomatic in the case of some common collocations. DCDuring TALK 15:41, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep, sentence adverb is a speech act. DAVilla 06:00, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
In all fairness, I like the speech-act argument. But, in all honesty, even if sentence adverbs are truly speech acts, many do not seem worth inclusion. Not to put too fine a point on it, it seems possible to construct an enormous variety of sentence adverbs (or structures of similar force as speech acts) in the form of prepositional phrases as well as infinitives and gerunds. Digging more deeply, I wonder whether it is not true that any English collocation could not be put into a context where it is a speech act. To be brutally honest, sentence adverbs seem like the least meritorious of the speech acts for inclusion, if, indeed, they are best consdiered as speech acts. Quite possibly, there needs to be a line drawn. To add another related point, we are quickly demonstrating that WT:CFI and WT:IDIOM may need a bit more work, at least in this regard. DCDuring TALK 18:03, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

"Common" French misspellings

I'm gonna propose the following as "not common misspellings":

Edit: perhaps a WT:BP discussion on this would be better than putting these here right away. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:09, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Edit #2: created discussion. Mglovesfun (talk) 14:58, 7 July 2009 (UTC)


Not particularly common. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

  • delete Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Created in error by a bot, and turned into an error since then, not common. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

  • delete Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Created in error by a bot, and turned into an error since then, not common. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

  • delete Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Not common. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

  • delete Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Not common. Mglovesfun (talk)

  • delete Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Not common. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

  • delete Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

quand meme

As it happens, the French Wiktionary lists camescope as an alternative spelling, not an error. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

  • keep camescope, it's not a misspelling. prenom, etc. are not common misspellings. Lmaltier 17:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
    • Deleted, 5 days after the opening of the vote, nobody wants to keep any of these. Mglovesfun (talk) 21:31, 11 July 2009 (UTC)



1. Of or pertaining to outpatients

Just an attributive use of the noun? --Dan Polansky 17:16, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Fix and keep. I imagine that for most speakers, "outpatient procedure" (for example) is an attributive use of the noun, but google books:"procedure is outpatient" gets three relevant hits — not overwhelming, but IMHO enough to meet CFI as an adjective. (And google:"very outpatient" even pulls up graded uses, but I'm not sure if any are durably archived.) But, our definition could use work. —RuakhTALK 17:41, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Per Ruakh's cites, keep (or, pointlessly, bring to RFV) and fix to something like "(of a procedure in a hospital) Not requiring a night's stay.".​—msh210 18:34, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep widespread use. Cited in non-attributive use IMO. DCDuring TALK 19:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done Thanks; this should have been a rfv, in retrospect. --Dan Polansky 10:09, 7 July 2009 (UTC)


Appears to be a company name and stock abbreviation only. --EncycloPetey 19:42, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, and the link suggested it was promotional spam. Gone. Equinox 19:47, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Rfd-redundant. Special sense for military careerist. DCDuring TALK 20:24, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete, adds nothing that #1 doesn't already cover. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:05, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Bring to RFV for a search for citations where the context does not imply "military" but "military" is understood from the word careerist alone.​—msh210 20:28, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

flogging the land

Is this not a simple metaphor, rather than an idiom? (The collocation would be attestable. It would have to be moved to flog the land.) DCDuring TALK 01:25, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

  • flog the land doesn't have any special meaning either. It's just a normal English construction, we can't include every utterance by any native speaker that has some sort of meaning. Delete Mglovesfun (talk) 10:03, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
(If a metaphor is used often enough, doesn't that make it an idiom? E.g., the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.) This seems to me idiomatic: flogging the land could mean torturing it by any means, such as excessive fertilization or flooding, but seems to include precisely excessive grazing and at least one of the following (but I'm not sure which): excessive planting and/or excessive reaping.​—msh210 20:25, 8 July 2009 (UTC)
I wouldn't say it's a set metaphor that people use often. It's more like figurative use of flog, but still, seems to have little or no relevance here. A similar example (from The Beatles) would be to work like a dog. Mglovesfun (talk) 16:13, 9 July 2009 (UTC)
"To flog the land" may also mean "to sell the land" (sense #2) as in this Australian interview:
JOHN THWAITES: We don't know what the Commonwealth are saying the full commercial value is in precise terms. Certainly that figure of $15 million has been put around but this land should be treated in the same way as the land in NSW around Sydney Harbour. It should be part of a National Park, a park for the people. We're prepared to take on the ongoing maintenance and management of that. We are prepared to negotiate with the Commonwealth for a good outcome but the Commonwealth just want to flog the land off for maximum value. --Hekaheka 14:45, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Flog meaning "sell" is not limited to land by any means. See, e.g., google:"flogging a|his car", "flogging a|his computer".​—msh210 16:09, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
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At least in the internet, the sell-sense seems to be more common than exploit-sense. When used in the exploit-sense, "to flog the land" seems to mean "overtaxing the nurturant capacity of the land by any means". --Hekaheka 14:56, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
"Flog" meaning sell gets limited use in the US. "Flog" (as lemma) within five words of "land" doesn't appear in COCA. I conclude this is more UK/Oz.
But I see no dictionary support for the "exploit" sense of "flog" that is here. To me the issue is whether we do users a better service adding a sense to "flog" to cover this or whether we force users to guess that, when they are trying to understand "flog the farm", "flog their land", "flog his land", they should remember to try "flog the land". DCDuring TALK 15:28, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I think adding a new sense to "flog" is a good solution. --Hekaheka 12:38, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

communal shopping

I can't find eny uses of this combination that aren't merely the product of communal + shopping. --EncycloPetey 15:33, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Strong delete, the Wikipedia article is created by the same user and is badly formatted (bad links, no categories). Coming very close to 'no usable content' - the definitions given seem to describe shopping which is also communal. Mglovesfun (talk) 16:10, 9 July 2009 (UTC)
Deleted (again) SemperBlotto 21:33, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

now that's what I'm talking about

SoP = [[now]] + [[that's what I'm talking about]]. DCDuring TALK 20:08, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Yep, should delete. Equinox 20:45, 10 July 2009 (UTC)
delete as superfluous, but keep the redirect. --Mglovesfun (talk) 21:31, 10 July 2009 (UTC)
May as well keep the redirect. DCDuring TALK 03:39, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete or redirect. Usually I say "redirect" for things like this, but this one would be such a low-value redirect that I'm hedging.​—msh210 00:13, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Our search engine is such that adding a word in front of an exactly typed headword will not yield the headword. I wish I could say we didn't need all the redirects. DCDuring TALK 02:19, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Okay, redirected, the consensus seems pretty solid on this one. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:32, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

hold your tongue

We have hold one's tongue. Shouldn't this be a redirect to that entry? DCDuring TALK 03:37, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

It's just the imperative of hold one's tongue, so yes. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:18, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes. Delete or redirect. Equinox 13:03, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
Redirect per nom.​—msh210 00:10, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
There are large numbers (certainly more than a hundred in English) of PoSs under the headings "Interjections", "Phrases", and "Idioms" that are similar. They are imperative forms of verbs (including simple verbs, phrasal verbs, and verb phrases) that should be or are already either separate entries or separate PoSs at the same entry. Expect to see a steady stream of them here.
In some cases, a non-gloss definition may be required, but this doesn't seem to need such a sense. Or is there a translation rationale that simply must be accommodated? DCDuring TALK 02:08, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Rendered a redirect to hold one's tongue. DCDuring TALK 00:05, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

tripartite agreement

Non-idiomatic and self-evident tripartite + agreement. Equinox 13:00, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Deleted --EncycloPetey 20:27, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

freedom of religion

freedom of speech

freedom of the press

freedom of movement

freedom of contract

Perhaps an "only in" template for this encyclopedic content. DCDuring TALK 06:32, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Weakish delete, quite sum of parts but a good list of translations would make the article useful. Mglovesfun (talk) 09:44, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep I think if you were to simply guess what it meant you could reasonably guess wrong; so it's not simply sum of parts. For example is it about the freedom of a religion to do something or the freedom of somebody to hold a religion, clearly the latter, but you wouldn't necessarily know that.Wolfkeeper 13:05, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Weak keep, unless we're going to delete freedom of speech, freedom of the press, etc. --EncycloPetey 03:24, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
    Happy to meet the suggested condition. Adding more freedoms that have no place here. They all seem like WP material. An only-in entry would help reduce the likelihood that we would keep getting entries from well-meaning contributors. I would be happy to see translations on only-ins if that would make translators happy. DCDuring TALK 04:03, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
    I don't see how such translations could work, since there is always the possibility of multiple senses (though perhaps not in the cases currently under discussion). I could see linking these to an Appendix on freedoms where the Translations would be given. --EncycloPetey 04:07, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
    All the cases so far have been to single articles at WP, not dab pages, AFAICT, but, you are correct: that need not always be true. DCDuring TALK 04:13, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

bat shit crazy

batshit insane

batshit crazy

[[bat shit]] + [[crazy]] DCDuring TALK 06:51, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Should be hyphenated, bat-shit crazy, according to the vast majority of search results, but it still seems a compound not worth of an entry. Equinox 12:54, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I have added at batshit#Adverb a non-gloss definition as "intensifier" and added batshit insane to this rfd. These multi-word entries can lead us to better entries at their components, but that doesn't mean they deserve to live. DCDuring TALK 16:15, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I'm still up for deleting this, intensifier + anyoldthing doesn't make a "term". Mglovesfun (talk) 20:48, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
What else have you ever heard "batshit" modify? "That guy is batshit tall"; "it's batshit sunny out today"; "James Bond is batshit cool". Doesn't work. bd2412 T 18:32, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
COCA has "batshit crazy" (2) and "batshit story" (1) as the only 2 uses of batshit attributively. DCDuring TALK 19:20, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
guano is the most batshit word ever coined. -- Poohammer 18:43, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
Deleted, Mglovesfun (talk) 20:16, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
Why not redirects to batshit? That's good for search engines to find us. Unless we don't want that kind of user. DCDuring TALK 19:20, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

three laws of robotics

Encyclopedic. DCDuring TALK 07:17, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete, not a "word" or a "term". Mglovesfun (talk) 09:44, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Bad caps, I think: Three Laws of Robotics. I don't see why it isn't a term, but I do agree that it's too encyclopaedic for us. Equinox 12:55, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete is a topic, not a lexicographical entry, it's not about the words.Wolfkeeper 13:00, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
13 days later, not one keep vote, deleted. Mglovesfun (talk) 21:46, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

dark green

Green that isn't especially bright. I suppose this was only added by somebody conscientious who wanted to include all of the standard computer colour names. Equinox 18:56, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

I'd say keep on the basis that there is dark green, dark blue, dark red, and dark gray/dark grey, but not dark purple nor dark yellow nor any other color I can think of. --EncycloPetey 20:26, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Why do you think there aren't dark yellow and purple? There's plenty of usage. Equinox 20:32, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
If that's the case, then I reverse my position. However, it is my experience that certain colors are never described as "dark", such as magenta, white, black, chartreuse, etc. Only a few of the basic seven colors in the visible spectrum are usually preceded by "dark" or "light", as well as grey and brown. --EncycloPetey 20:39, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
1. I contend that most colours can take "dark" (e.g. yellow and purple, as above); "white" and "black" may well be exceptions, because of their extreme nature, but 2. In those cases, it is just that those colours cannot be dark by their very nature; it's like saying we should have big giant simply because there is no big dwarf (they are never big). Isn't it? Equinox 20:46, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't understand the logic of keeping based on "dark" not being a universal modifier of all possible color words or any of an arbitrarily selected list of color words. This would seem to be a principle of broad application yielding extreme results. "Dark" and "light", "pale" and "deep", "fluorescent", "dayglo", "yellowish" and other modifiers can be applied to vast numbers of color words (though not all) without adding one iota to the value of Wiktionary.
The other OneLook references have only redirects to "green". DCDuring TALK 21:21, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete. @EncycloPetey: "Dark black" and "light black" are rare — so rare that this b.g.c. hit, by a well-respected linguist, gives them the ungrammaticality asterisk — but they are nonetheless attested, as may be seen (for example) in this b.g.c. hit. But even if we trust the former, it doesn't seem to support creating these entries, because it argues that this ungrammaticality follows immediately from the semantics of the component words. —RuakhTALK 23:15, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
As far as I know, there is no "dark yellow" color, and I don’t know what "dark red" would refer to, but dark green, dark blue, dark gray, and dark brown refer to certain fairly specific colors. Different languages have very different numbers of single-word terms for different colors, from as few as two or three to hundreds. It just happens that English does not have a commonly used or understood single-word term for the colors light blue, dark blue, dark green, and so on. Russian, OTOH, does have, and light blue is голубой, dark blue is синий. Dark yellow is meaningless and can’t be used without graphic examples or detailed explanation. dark green is a very common term and people pretty well agree on the shades that it covers, and it is as specific as just green. There are even more precise terms, such as process green, but they tend to be technical. —Stephen 23:33, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
There have been scientific studies of the effect of language on color perception; I wonder if any of them might be relevant here? If I recall correctly, speakers of languages that distinguish light blue and dark blue are faster at finding the "odd one out" among a group of dark blue squares with one light blue square and vice versa, but no faster at finding the "odd one out" among a group of blue squares with one green square and vice versa. In other words, even though words like "light blue" and "dark blue" have distinct one-word translations in some languages, that doesn't mean that English-speakers will necessarily have those as distinct concepts. (BTW, I'm not so sure that "dark green" at least is all that specific; playing around with the "Edit Colors" control in MS Paint, I find that I'm quite happy to use "dark green" for everything from a deep, blue-infused forest green all the way to a very muddy yellow-green. Certainly when I hear "dark green", without more information, I picture a specific shade of dark green, but if I then saw the thing described, I'd instantly correct my picture, and I don't think I'd even realize that I'd pictured something different. The same is true, to a lesser extent, of "dark yellow".) —RuakhTALK 02:10, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete per others' comments: SoP.​—msh210 00:03, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

fish 'n' chips

See 'n' (and compare rock 'n' roll, which does exist but is a redirect). Equinox 19:35, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Keep as alternative spelling, you can see it all over the place in the UK. Google Images might be a good place to get some pictorial evidence. Mglovesfun (talk) 20:07, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I know it's quite common, but you can also see bits 'n' bobs, bits 'n' pieces, snacks 'n' stuff (restaurant chain), and all anybody really needs to know is what 'n' means. Equinox 20:12, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
In the same way that readable is from read + -able but we have that. Here's one. Mglovesfun (talk) 20:15, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Absolutely not the same thing, because readable is a single word and a foreigner might not know where to split it. When spaces are present, the individual words can be looked up separately if necessary. Equinox 20:21, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
...which wouldn't help your foreigner, since this is not just any old fish and any old chips.​—msh210 17:42, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep as an alternative spelling of fish and chips. --EncycloPetey 20:28, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep (as an alternative-spelling entry, I suppose). I don't really understand the argument to be rid of this. Nominator seems to be saying it's not idiomatic because it's SoP: fish + 'n' + chips. But then fish and chips is equally SoP: why not nominate it?​—msh210 00:07, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
fish and chips is not SoP because it's a specific preparation of certain fish and potato chips. A goldfish on a pile of microprocessors is not "fish and chips", even though it might meet the term. However, fish 'n' chips is just an alternative spelling, and that 'n' can be used in any situation to replace and. Equinox 00:10, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, I agree. It's SOP, where the P are fish and chips and s/and/'n'/. However, I don't really see the harm in keeping it as an alternative spelling. —RuakhTALK 02:13, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
That's not a sum of parts; that's a substitution of parts. --EncycloPetey 04:09, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
In fairness, fish and chips is not sum of parts because it can't be just any fish with any chips. Serve me some salmon with McDonald's fries and that's not fish and chips. Mglovesfun (talk) 16:25, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
So, Ruakh, if we had [[Philadelphia cheesesteak]], you'd say Philly cheesesteak was SoP, I gather. And because we have [[color blind]], you think colour blind is SoP. Right?​—msh210 18:23, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
It's not a question of what we have, but of what it is. 'n' is just an eye-dialect spelling of and that's often found in advertising. Any idiom that contains and can be (and likely has been) written with 'n' instead; that doesn't mean we should have entries for every such 'n' spelling. It doesn't seem to me that "fish 'n' chips" is an actual term, or an actual spelling of its own; it's just the term "fish and chips", with the 'n'-substitution that we explain at 'n'. (Maybe I'm wrong; I'm not a UK-ian, and maybe a UK-ian would feel that this is really its own spelling. If so, I'd like to know that.) In the case of "Philadelphia cheesesteak" vs. "Philly cheesesteak", the latter is the usual name, so that approach wouldn't make sense; and in the case of "color blind" vs. "colour blind", I think one should redirect to the other. —RuakhTALK 19:15, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

fuck ton

Protologism, even more so than the word/phrase used to define it. --Sigma 7 16:17, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

It is actually pretty attestable with something like the meaning given. But still... not too many words that you can't put either for or after fuck. Mglovesfun (talk) 16:23, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

too much

too many

Sense: [[too]] + [[much#Determiner]]. (Not the "Phrase" fka "Interjection.) DCDuring TALK 19:27, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

I've added too many to the discussion.​—msh210 20:03, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete. Consider also too few, too little, too purple, too wise, and so on. (That some of these are determiners and the others adjectives is a distinction without a difference AFAICT.)​—msh210 20:07, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, strong delete. Equinox 11:36, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Comment. These do seem to be SOP (unlike most determiners, much/many/little/few can be modified by very many adverbs; contrast *too several, *too a lot (of)/*a too lot (of)), but on the other hand, we are also a translating dictionary, and some things do need to be in translating dictionaries. I'm guessing there is at least one other language that expresses this concept in some similar way (maybe Scots? maybe Old English, or at least Middle English? maybe one of the constructed languages?), but for most of the world's languages, how would you figure out how to express this if not by looking it up? (For a number of languages — at least French, Spanish, and Hebrew — I suppose you could find the translation of too, then serendipitously discover from our entry that the same word also means “too much” and “too many”; but that's not exactly a strategy.) —RuakhTALK 02:52, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
It's time for the leadership here to change CFI. CFI says this ought be deleted. The translating dictionary argument might be compelling, but the argument needs to be made and the criteria need to be operationalized so as not to waste time, effort, and ,most of all, enthusiasm. One can't sit back and get others to do the bull work without direction unless one is willing to accept the consequences. To have "rules" that are whimsically and time-consumingly overridden is silly. If we actually have a lot of expertise on tap, then it needs to apply itself to organizing the work to be done. If it isn't interested in the English part of wiktionary then perhaps we need an About English section to more efficiently address the issues as they arise. DCDuring TALK 03:55, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

Philly cheesesteak

SoP.​—msh210 22:09, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

How so? What did the Philly portion contribute to the meaning? In the US, this is synonymous with cheesesteak, not a sum of parts, and in parts of the US is rarely named any other way. It is a particular kind of sandwich implying particular ingredients, such as onions and bell peppers, that are not implied by the components. Keep. --EncycloPetey 22:32, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
It's a Philadelphia-style cheesesteak. (Admittedly, that's the only style there is (AFAIK), but so what?)​—msh210 22:38, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't think it is all that particular a sandwich except for the mandatory cheese and the steak, but it is a sandwich, possibly served on a plate, not a steak. What are the lexicographic implications of the existence of "vegetarian cheesesteak" (13 @ News), but rarely "vegetarian Philly cheesesteak" (2 @ News}, and hardly ever "Philly vegetarian cheesesteak" (0 @ News)? "Cheesesteak" without "Philly cheesesteak" is mentioned in 4-5 times as many documents at Google news as "Philly cheesesteak". The words "real" and "authentic" precede "Philly cheesesteak" 50% more often than they precede "cheesesteak". This is suggestive evidence that the Philly is an optional term, a product of civic boosterism and attempted product differentiation. DCDuring TALK 23:51, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Please perform a similar analysis for French fries and fries. Do you reach the same conclusion about the "optional" modifier "French"? --EncycloPetey 03:32, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I really think you should do some of your own work. I used COCA because it makes it possible to select by PoS (though not always reliably). First "authentic" and "real" don't come up with "French". Without doing any needless research, French fries is a short form for w:French-fried potatoes. The "French" is a differentiator for one type (those deep-fried) from others such as "home", "German", etc. I don't really think it is sufficiently parallel to shed much light on this. Also the absence of promotional and booster motivations make the overall usage situation too different. DCDuring TALK 04:14, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
One of my points is that it's silly to throw a bunch of numbers around in the absence of meaningful comparisons. What about Chicago-style pizza? Do you think that would be a fair comparison? --EncycloPetey 04:29, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
My principal continuing point is that each individual's opinion, no matter what they spend their time and career doing, is one data point. You seem to be complaining that my getting some data about hundreds of usages is worse than having a couple of people's opinions without the benefit of any data other than their own fallible, imperfectly remembered, unexaminable, unsharable experiences. I know that such data as I glean does not settle the matter. It does seem a bit of improvement over the data-free legalistic argumentation that usually accompanies our non-consensus RfD discussions. It seems that we don't even have folks who have the stomach for that kind of thing any more. That it takes time to do even second- and third-rate analysis would seem to mean that we need more folks to do that kind of work. If the existing crew isn't enough, then we need more recruits and we need to get them into the right frame of mind to do it. Perhaps we need to rethink our criteria and get away from modified Pawley lists and get toward Pawley-list-informed analysis protocols for idioms using Google News, Google Books, Google Groups, COCA, and BNC. Maybe we can semi-automate such work. DCDuring TALK 05:14, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
That's 0 for 2. I've asked questions in each of my last posts, both of which you've side-stepped in favor of metaphysics. --EncycloPetey 05:24, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
To try to clarify what I tried to explain above (but did not do well): "New York pizza" arguably is idiomatic (though I'm not sure I'd argue it myself): it refers specifically to large-diameter thin-crust round pizza, not just to any pizza popular in New York. (Or let's say it does, arguendo.) The "New York" part of the phrase adds some meaning to the phrase, and the phrase is not just the sum of its parts. (I reiterate, this is arguable.) However, "Philly cheesesteak" or "Philadelphia cheesesteak" refers to any cheesesteak (AFAICT): all cheesesteaks are Philly cheesesteaks. As such, the phrase "Philly cheesesteak" does not mean "thin-crust, large-diameter cheesesteak" or any such: it means "cheesesteak, like in Philly" only. So it's SoP.​—msh210 15:41, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Sorry, but I only followed your logical up to the point of your conclusion. You argued that Philly adds nothing at all to the meaning, but then said the combination is sum of parts. Does that mean we need a definition at Philly for "no meaning"? If the combination is exactly synonymous with one of its parts, then the combination cannot logically be a sum of parts. If it were a sum of parts, then the two parts would each contribute to the meaning. A sum of parts would be as in "yellow bus", where the total meaning is the sum of the two parts. --EncycloPetey 20:34, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
Philly cheesesteak means Philly + cheesesteak: a cheesesteak, Philly-style. SoP. (Since every cheesesteak is Philly-style, that's just a cheesesteak.)​—msh210 18:10, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Weakish delete, the WP link redirects to cheesesteak and the definitions here just seems to say cheesesteak as well, no reason to keep this unless the article is improved in the next few days. Mglovesfun (talk) 12:01, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Keep Despite msh210's assertion, not every cheesesteak is a Philly cheesesteak. There are variations of the original cheesesteak that are prepared in the same manner but with different ingredients such as chicken cheesesteak or Hawaiian cheesesteak (usually but not always substituting ham), in which cases the term Philly cheesesteak can and does serve as a reference to the original beef cheesesteak. — Carolina wren discussió 03:09, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

bog off

"Interjection" Isn't an interjection. Is imperative form of verb. Should probably be shown as non-gloss sense of verb. DCDuring TALK 00:33, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

More of a cleanup issue that a deletion one, but yes it isn't a "true" interjection. Mglovesfun (talk) 11:49, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

because of that

[[because of]] + [[that]]. Only some One Look dictionaries have "because of". If someone could show me some facts that this was a "commonly" sought term, say ten times a year, I could get enthusiastic about including it and some variants as redirects. DCDuring TALK 01:48, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete. I don't see any lexical benefit in having this. --EncycloPetey 03:35, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete. Because of this, because of them, for that reason... nothing in the sum that isn't in the parts. Equinox 11:34, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Strong delete, adds absolutely nothing to the Wiktionary. The French interwiki is up for deletion as well (fr:WT:PPS#because of that). Mglovesfun (talk) 11:54, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete. First check whether the listed translations belong somewhere else, though.​—msh210 15:42, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Deleted, I'm moving the translations to talk:because of to be checked. Mglovesfun (talk) 19:46, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

go to the wall for someone

[[go to the wall]] [[for]] Would this be a phrasal idiom? DCDuring TALK 02:10, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

I think go to the wall can cover this, this entry adds nothing useful. Delete. Mglovesfun (talk) 11:55, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
If going to the wall means failing, I don't understand what it means to "fail" for someone. Unless go to the wall is missing exactly this meaning, i.e. if you can cite something like:
  • "Jimmy proved to be a good friend. He went to the wall."
then this should be kept. DAVilla 06:11, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
That's what I meant, merge with go to the wall but deleted the redirect as unacceptable. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:49, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
DAVilla was correct to point out the missing common sense of "go to the wall": to make an all out effort, as in "They won't won't go the wall about/on/over that point." Once more an SoP entry points out a weakness in a component entry. Having added value as best it can, it can now proceed to its rightful place.
There might possibly be an older sense of "go to the wall" that we are missing too, something like "to be tossed aside", although that may not be distinct from "to fail". DCDuring TALK 20:35, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

take time

to take one's time is idiomatic. Neither of the senses shown for this term is. DCDuring TALK 03:15, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Weakish keep, I don't think [[take]] + [[time]] covers this, so it's better to keep than to delete. Mglovesfun (talk) 11:57, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
    What sense of "take" is missing? Is it just a problem of finding the right sense at "take"? Ie, is take just too long to be usable? Is there any evidence that users need entries like "take time"? I certainly don't think that it meets existing WT:CFI#Idiomatic phrases. DCDuring TALK 13:29, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Just a neutral observation: this could be used in a third way not in the entry, where time is being taken away: "I arrived at the old prison a little late, and then walking through the facility took even more time from the visiting schedule" (2006). And take does badly need some cleanup, e.g. (in)transitivity indicators (it hardly means "to have sex"), dodgy senses ("To choose", just because of "I'll take [carry away with me] the blue plates"?). Equinox 14:58, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
There are few of the longer entries that don't resemble the Augean stables. Unfortunately it may take mortals more than a day per entry. Where are our Hercules? DCDuring TALK 15:28, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I found a lingustic article about "take", which I've not yet read. See Talk:take. DCDuring TALK 20:39, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

gate crash

This has a space in. The verb does not. Only two matches on Google Groups, both of which I'd regard as errors, and probably none in Books. Equinox 12:33, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

It looks attestable, though not common. Same with gate-crash. How about converting to alternative spelling and marking as "uncommon"" They are likely to be re-entered if deleted, being college-student-y. Keep and/or Move to/treat as RfV. DCDuring TALK 13:49, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Hummm, I'd go for "misspelling" rather than "alternative spelling", and since we only deal in "common misspellings" then one that's "uncommon" (as you suggest) would not make the cut. It seemed to me not at all common enough to be sincerely called an alternative. Equinox 02:18, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't see that we have a standard by which it can be called a misspelling. Is it a misspelling if no other dictionary has it as a spelling? We usually interpret it that if another dictionary has it, it must be at least an alternative, believing that other dictionaries are more selective/limited than we are. I've wondered out loud for some time what are standards were for alternative vs. common mis- vs. uncommon mis-spellings were. I don't know that it is worthwhile to bother counting any spellings differing only in space and hyphen as misspellings. We may need them all to get users to the entries they need. "uncommon" seems like a non-prescriptive way of warning people in the absence of a clear accepted standard of what constitutes a misspelling. DCDuring TALK 03:46, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
I suppose so. The rules are awful about this, though. I've long thought that somebody who wanted to make trouble without actually breaking any rule could just add a hundred thousand unacceptable and clearly accidental misspellings by finding the measly three "citations" of each on Usenet. Equinox 03:49, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
It wouldn't be so bad if we had a lot of these. As long as they directed users to the right place and were marked as uncommon or something similar. DCDuring TALK 10:31, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

point-of-care imaging

imaging at the point of care. DCDuring TALK 20:49, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

I can't see a reason to keep this, is it a "common" technical term? If not delete as pointless. Mglovesfun (talk) 12:16, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

bring back into the fold

It's all in fold#Etymology 2. DCDuring TALK 22:20, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete.​—msh210 18:15, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
WT:RFV might be good for this. If enough idiomatic example can be found, I'd say keep. Mglovesfun (talk) 12:14, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
But what makes it idiomatic?
I know that it is attestable as a collocation. This phrase and its close brethren constitute most of the usage by contemporary city folk of this sense of fold#Etymology 2. City folk like me simply don't know this meaning of the word "fold". DCDuring TALK 12:39, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Well it's a lot more idiomatic than mise en bouteille. Weak keep not easy to understand from the sum of its parts. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

I'm gannin' to see

I + 'm + gannin/ganning + to see. Geordie. gan#Verb contains all the novelty. Having all the inflected forms of it (which we don't seem to) should fully address the needs of language learners, translators, and even fans. DCDuring TALK 00:51, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Strictly sum of parts, strong delete Mglovesfun (talk) 12:04, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
If this is to be deleted, much of the relevant content, especially the citation, should appear at gan#Verb, which may also need the form "ganned" instead of "went". DCDuring TALK 12:24, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Strong delete. Equinox 19:46, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Deleted per all, citations moved to Talk:gan. Mglovesfun (talk) 21:57, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

mettre en bouteille

mise en bouteille

Erm [[mettre] [[en]] [[bouteille]]? Just means to put into a bottle, a bit like the really commons verbs in English (in this case, put you can put virtually noun with it. Mglovesfun (talk) 14:36, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Keep, idiomatic. It may be sum of parts, but it's also the set term used in viniculture, and it can't be translated into English by translating the separate parts (we say "bottling", not "putting into a bottle"). Ƿidsiþ 14:45, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
I've actually changed to {{rfd-sense}} because mettre en bouteille has a second meaning. Mglovesfun (talk) 16:45, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Keep The existence of the second meaning, which seems specific to Belgium, makes the presence of the first meaning almost necessary. Removing it might be very misleading to users. Lmaltier 07:22, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

aquatic animal

Is this a set phrase? I wouldn't say so. Ƿidsiþ 13:17, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

No. The combination marine mammal I could believe is a set phrase, but not "aquatic animal" (nor "aquatic plant", "aquatic life", "aquatic organism", etc.). --EncycloPetey 15:06, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete per EncycloPetey. Mglovesfun (talk) 16:43, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
I say we also delete terrestrial animal, created by the same user. (See control device, spring month, marine fish, and scented water, all listed below.) --EncycloPetey 19:47, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Deleted (and content of translation changed to two words) SemperBlotto 07:06, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

in layman's terms

No OneLook reference except us thinks this is an idiom. DCDuring TALK

An important collocation, but could refer to any of six senses of layman and more than one sense of term. Not idiomatic. DCDuring TALK 16:48, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

keep your pecker up

SoP. UK sense of pecker (mouth) and the pun is what gives it interest. DCDuring TALK 16:53, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Observation: if keeping, move to keep one's pecker up. Equinox 22:29, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
How's it actually used? Always as a salutation? Or in various ways as a verb phrase? Ie, "I told him to keep his pecker up". "He kept his pecker up the whole time." DCDuring TALK 22:51, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
It can be used with various pronouns. A few random pickings from Books: "Mum kept her pecker up for my sake, but Aunt broke down and I felt terrible"; "keeping one's pecker up in the poorly lit, undersized, chilly rooms used by Berzelius"; "he felt sick, and went and got some rum to keep his pecker up". Equinox 22:54, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

cost an arm and a leg

[[cost]] + an [[arm and a leg]]. The idiom is all and only the object. Other verbs: charge, pay. DCDuring TALK 17:03, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Keep, I think. The construction is widely used and I'm disposed to think of it as an idiom in its own right, or at least an entry-worthy set phrase. Users might well come in searching for this expression. -- WikiPedant 17:07, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
I was thinking that redirects from charge an arm and a leg, pay an arm and a leg, as well as this entry might adequately address user needs. We could include more forms as well (past, gerund, 3rd person sing). I don't see how we are going to maintain full entries for all the verb-extended "idioms", nor do I see why we would exclude forms or act as if there is a closed set of forms using arm and a leg. No other dictionary at onelook, including the idiom dictionaries they portal to, have any variety of this other than "(an) arm and a leg" as an entry or even a redirect. DCDuring TALK 19:28, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Redirects would suffice, I suppose, although I am getting a couple of idiom dictionary links for "cost an arm and a leg" at OneLook (and WT is an idiom dictionary too). Anyhow, I agree that the important thing is that users get sent directly to an illuminating entry if they search for any of these variations. -- WikiPedant 22:48, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, I think FreeDictionary.com and/or Dictionary.com have links, but not entries. I hope that Google takes our redirects seriously. I'm happy to wait for more opinion on this. There are a large number of idioms that each have a very limited number of words that fit in surrounding slots. Though I don't really like redirects, they seem to be our best tool for these situations. I would love to have some sort of accepted guidelines for these situations to give a little bit of regularity to our treatment of some regularizable classes of multiword entries. DCDuring TALK 23:44, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Redirect to arm and a leg.​—msh210 21:23, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

reference point

defined as point of reference. Perhaps point of reference is idiomatic, but this? DCDuring TALK 18:16, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Keep as an alternative form (not spelling) of point of reference. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Even alternative-form entries are supposed to meet WT:CFI. If you think they should have a lesser standard, it might be part of a CFI reform proposal. DCDuring TALK 22:50, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Seems like each is iff the other is.​—msh210 22:53, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
I'm saying it meets CFI, Mglovesfun (talk) 20:20, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

control device

Both definitions seem sum-of-parts to me. --EncycloPetey 19:37, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete, does not meet CFI. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
  1. Delete per nom. DCDuring TALK 00:13, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

spring month

(and autumn month, fall month, summer month, winter month). --EncycloPetey 19:38, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete, does not meet CFI. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete -- WikiPedant 22:58, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Delete all per nom. DCDuring TALK 00:14, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Delete all.​—msh210 21:20, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

marine fish

Sum of marine + fish. --EncycloPetey 19:41, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete, does not meet CFI. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete -- WikiPedant 22:58, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Deleted (Content of translation changed to two words) SemperBlotto 06:59, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

scented water

Sum of scented + water. --EncycloPetey 19:43, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete, no special meaning not expressed by scented + water. Mglovesfun (talk) 22:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete -- WikiPedant 22:58, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

most of all

Non-idiomatic SoP. Compare least of all, biggest of all, brightest of all... Equinox 02:17, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

I think I agree, but "of all" seems curious and idiomatic, I think. I don't think a normal person would look it up, but it seems of interest. Nor do I know what such an entry would say. Perhaps a redirect to the right section of all? DCDuring TALK 02:28, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
I suppose it's exceptional because any contemporary speaker (?) would tend to refer to the group as "all of them", not just "all". But, as you say, nobody would look up of all on its own. Equinox 02:32, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
It’s idiomatic. I can’t think of another language that can say it just this way. It’s a set term that any good dictionary should have. —Stephen 15:10, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
But it doesn't seem idiomatic in the sense of WT:CFI. Interestingly, the OneLook dictionaries must not be good because they do not have entries for this (including the Cambridge, AHD, and MCGraw-Hill idiom dictionaries). Some seem to have inbound links (redirects), but they offer no content. It would not surprise me that language learners might be mystified by this. That would suggest that a redirect or "only-in" page would be desirable to explain the generality of this rather than leave users solely with lexical information, forcing them to learn solely by induction. One would think that users looking things up here deserve more. DCDuring TALK 16:23, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
Deserve more than what? I have no idea what you’re trying to say. —Stephen 17:19, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
...than the bare entry that we have given them. What I am trying to say is that the entry is a waste of their time and ours. They may as well spend their time searching some corpus to find how the term is used for all the help our entry offers. DCDuring TALK 18:48, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
So add in examples of usage. An unfinished or incomplete entry is better than a deleted entry. When I use a dictionary, I look up complete terms, not elements of terms. If I don’t find the term I am interested in, I do not resort to trying to puzzle out the parts, but look to another source. A dictionary either has it or it hasn’t, and fiddling with parts of terms is inefficient, error-prone, and a waste of time. —Stephen 14:04, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete. If [[of all]] is created, then redirect this thither.​—msh210 21:19, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Either this meets CFI or it doesn't; either it should be in Wiktionary or it shouldn't. If it should be in Wiktionary and doesn't meet CFI (or shouldn't be in Wiktionary and does meet CFI), then CFI should be changed. Otherwise these things will remain like the proverbial bad penny. DCDuring TALK 21:20, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Keep and start and article for least of all. We're not talking about superlative forms like biggest + of + all, we're talking about a specific meaning. Mglovesfun (talk) 18:34, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

The core here certainly seems to be of all, which is preceded by a superlative adjective. It seems reasonably productive in its ability to join with superlatives. The following (not an exhaustive list) all appear as sentence adjuncts (e.g., Most of all, you need to be entirely honest.)

  • first of all
  • best of all
  • worst of all
  • second of all
  • least of all
  • greatest of all
  • last of all
  • biggest of all
  • most importantly of all
  • most disturbing of all
  • most difficult of all
  • saddest of all
  • And the most important question of all
  • most striking of all
  • in spite of all

Exceptions seem to be:

  • first and last, but these are at least notionally superlative
  • most importantly, an adverb, but still superlative
  • And the most important question of all, a noun phrase modified by a superlative adjective
  • in spite of all, a prepositional phrase that is rare, and sounds odd to my ear, but appears even in academic writing

Only a few, including most of all and best of all and their opposites can also function as modifiers in clause structure (e.g., I loved him most of all.), but then, only most and best individually can do so.

Another notable feature of these is the lack of a definite article (cf., the worst of all).

I don't see any mention of any of this in the CGEL, but then, I may not be looking in the right place.

Most of all and least of all as adjuncts do seem to be uniquely idiomatic here in that they typically mean most important of all, whereas everything else is explicit in its quality.--Brett 12:59, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, the others seem very sum of parts, but not the two I cited. Mglovesfun (talk) 20:50, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
Can of all be an intensifier and a polished speaker's way of saying "er"? Anything else? DCDuring TALK 21:02, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, semantically speaking, it intensifies things. Syntactically speaking, it's a prepositional phrase which typically functions as a modifier in AdjPs.--Brett 21:55, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

academic disadvantage

Doesn't claim to be an idiom, many possible and probably attestable meaningful collocations, but that doesn't mean any one of them meets WT:CFI, let alone this sense. DCDuring TALK 20:00, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Not idiomatic or used as a set phrase, delete, Mglovesfun (talk) 14:34, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Deleted, a few more opinions would have been nice, mind you. Mglovesfun (talk) 21:31, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

pissin like a race horse

Just a non-idiomatic hyperbolic simile. DCDuring TALK 21:17, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

I'm not sure this is just Geordie, either. If you "normalize" the spellings (pissing, racehorse) you can find several uses in Standard English. Equinox 01:14, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Would piss like a racehorse meet CFI? I don't think so, maybe it could be explained under to piss. Mglovesfun (talk) 14:37, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Since it doesn't mean to piss while on all fours (i.e., in the manner of a horse) it clearly has an idiomatic meaning of large quantity, much as hung like a horse and eat like a horse. Perhaps we should delete those two as well and have an entry at like a horse that covers this adverbial meaning and makes these three be deletable as sum of parts. If we don't consolidate them at like a horse, then moving this to the standard piss like a horse would make sense. — Carolina wren discussió 20:54, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
As best I can remember, we have the practice of not including similes if they are just similes. I'll see if I can find the discussion, but there would have to be drastic limits if we were to allow them. The number of entries beginning with "like" could rival the balance of English-language entries. DCDuring TALK 21:13, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
I'd be interested to hear your opinion on Category:English similes. (BTW, this expression has always thrown me. In my area, people never say "piss like a racehorse" except in "need to piss like a racehorse", and I can never tell whether it's "need to piss like a racehorse pisses", or "need to piss like a racehorse needs to piss". I know I've seen this discussed before somewhere, but I can never remember the conclusion.) —RuakhTALK 03:03, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Racehorses aren't known for their needfullness, are they? Whereas they are known for their "equipment".
Speaking of racehorses, how many stables does Augeus have here, anyway? And that's just the categorized portion of similes. There may be as many again not assigned to that category, although searching for "as" and "like" would probably find many of them. Many of them (half+) look at first blush as if they might meet CFI. It's interesting that for urbanites the barnyard and country similes increasingly need explanation.
Who is actually going to clean up all these messes? I'm still working my way through phrases, just to get the proverbs and sentences. And I'm just doing English.
Somehow collocations and similes and similar seem to merit a lower grade of inclusion that makes them accessible to search both internally and from search engines, discourages entries that wouldn't meet CFI, and direct users to useful full entries. DCDuring TALK 04:17, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

historical figure

What redeeming idiomatic (CFI sense) value? DCDuring TALK 23:21, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

None that I can think of. This combination could also be used with other sum-of-part senses, as in:
  • 2002, Yuichi Shionoya Staff, German Historical School: Historical and Ethical Approach to Econmics‎, page 58 (quoting Knies, 1883)
    Therefore, the investigation of the economic development in people's lives becomes the task specific to political economy. It should first identify the historical figure of the national economy that moves stage by stage, and then discern the fundamental cuase of this movement.
This seems to be "figure" in a financial sense, and looking at a historical value for such a figure. --EncycloPetey 01:12, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
Not idiomatic or used as a set phrase, delete, Mglovesfun (talk) 14:33, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

owt fer nowt

Precisely as dictionary-worthy as something for nothing. Equinox 03:52, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Unless it is something like a proverb or, at least, a cliche. I don't know. I was just trying to put a good face on it. DCDuring TALK 04:02, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
I think something for nothing might meet CFI, and this is (or ought to be) attestable with this precise meaning, in other words, not sure yet. Mglovesfun (talk) 14:32, 19 July 2009 (UTC)


This word does not seem to exist at all. See User talk:Alasdair#harjaR -- Prince Kassad 10:10, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Very strong delete, we don't currently allow Proto-Germanic entries in the mainspace, and Google gets zero hits for this, apart from this page and harjaR itself. Mglovesfun (talk) 14:30, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

slam the phone down

hang up the phone

I'm looking forward to hearing why this is idiomatic. DCDuring TALK 23:42, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

It's about as idiomatic as strong delete, Mglovesfun (talk) 20:05, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
I specifically didn't RFD this on its creation because I had already been stung over hang up the phone. Surely a similar argument could be used here that, depending on the model, you might not be slamming down the entire phone but only the handset. (I think this is fucking retarded, but I didn't want to get into it at the time, so didn't RFV.) Equinox 20:16, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
Consider this quote from Google Books: "Then tell participants to say goodbye, hang up, and turn off their cell phones." "Hang up" now means to "terminate a telephone call." Not long ago it meant to "terminate a phone call by placing a handset or receiver in its cradle". Earlier still it meant to "hang the earpiece on the cradle". If a user goes to a complete entry at "hang up", what could possibly be left uncertain? What vintage telephone technology is being referred to perhaps? Perhaps "hang up the phone" should redirect to "hang up" for the benefit of users who type in the full four words in the searchbox.
With "slam down the phone", it seems wildly implausibly that there is any importance to a distinction between slamming down a handset (or mouthpiece or receiver or cellphone) and slamming down a base unit. "Slam" is likely the salient term. DCDuring TALK 00:42, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
Well you think that, and I think that, but for example Stephen G (and no disrespect to him) wants to "look up complete terms, not elements of terms". I'm horribly opinionated, but I still realise that this is a collaborative project and would rather make a decision based on rules than on preferences. Equinox 02:14, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
First one deleted. For DCD, couldn't hang up cover this? "Hang up the phone" doesn't actually appear in your citation, just "hang up". Mglovesfun (talk) 04:18, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

free variable

SoP.​—msh210 19:36, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

Is it not a technical term in mathematics? Certainly the current definition is well beyond WT:CFI, so delete unless it can be attested as a specific technical term, not a variable which is free. Mglovesfun (talk) 20:08, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
It is just a variable which is free, q.v.​—msh210 20:12, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
With the current definition from programming, the term "free variable" appears to be SoP only because its meaning is explicitly listed in the entry "free" -- "(programming) Of identifiers, not bound". The same applies to "free variable" in logic, which is currently undefined.
If "free variable" gets deleted, other terms may follow. They include algebraic number, per the definition of algebraic -- "(Of a number) which is a root of some polynomial", which makes "algebraic number" technically a sum of parts. Likewise transcendental number and even complex number, as complex has the definition "(mathematics) Of a number, of the form a + bi, where a and b are real numbers and i is the square root of −1."
I fear that these cases provide a method of how to artificially make a lot of two-word technical terms of the form <adjective> <noun> appear sum-of-parts, by providing their definition at the adjective, of the form "Of <noun>, definition". Imagine I get rid of red dwarf by adding to red the definition "Of a dwarf star, small and relatively cool one of the main sequence".
I do not know what WT:CFI says to these cases, but to me all these sum-of-parts seem somehow artificial or odd. I would like to see free variable, algebraic number, transcendetal number and complex number included.
Some of the concerned entries: algebraic number, algebraic integer, bound variable, cardinal number, complex number, free variable, imaginary number, rational number, real number, transcendental number, free software, open set, closed set, complete graph. --Dan Polansky 22:51, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
See especially prime number, where this discussion already happened. Equinox 02:10, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, I thought it was time to revisit the issue.  :-)  (The previous discussion is at talk:prime number.)​—msh210 18:21, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
But note, Dan (and others), that people speak of a variable's being free, without tying the word free into the phrase free variable: google books:"variable is free".​—msh210 18:21, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, the adjective and the noun is separable, not glued together, in most of the listed cases.
For informal comparison outside of bounds of WT:CFI, many general dictionaries have "prime number"[21] and "complex number"[22], while only few general dictionaries have "free variable"[23]. --Dan Polansky 22:45, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
I have no doubt that it's important to include prime number, and I agree with Dan Polansky's reasoning. But, for free variable, I don't know. Lmaltier 18:58, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
I am always looking to break phrases down to components, but I don't see the point in the case of well-defined terms like this and many other mathematical and scientific terms. The parallels among, say, logical, mathematical, computing, and linguistic senses seem real, but each use of "free" is quite distinct and doesn't occur except in close proximity and obvious reference to "variable". I would think we could make a CFI argument for this. Frankly, I'd even prefer not to try to do the forced one-collocation, one-context definitions at "free". Wouldn't it make more sense to have some sense at free that accentuated the parallels and directly referred users to the entry at free variable which contained the context-specifics? DCDuring TALK 00:49, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
The math/logic sense of free for variables is used in reference to variables only, of course, but not always with the word variable. E.g., google books:"is free in the statement|predicate|formula" -"variable is free" (some of which do use variable, but many, many of which do not).​—msh210 17:18, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps subsenses s.v. free-?​—msh210 17:18, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

heads would roll

Why? Isn't heads will roll enough? DCDuring TALK 12:17, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

It's the past tense some conjugated form of it. If heads do will roll is to be listed as verb (which it can be, but I don't think it should be), then this should be a past-tense form-of entry; otherwise, it should hard-redirect.​—msh210 18:03, 21 July 2009 (UTC) 18:08, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

walk your bike

"A sign ...." DCDuring TALK 12:23, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Delete as is, but it does raise the issue that no definition of walk currently conveys this meaning. (Meaning 6 comes closest, but it's phrased in such a way as to take only an animate object.) I wouldn't say walk one's bike is an idiom though, since "walk one's bicycle", "walk one's motorcycle", "walk one's moped" etc. are all possible too. Angr 13:44, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
    • P.S. I've just added the relevant meaning to walk; it's now meaning 12. Angr 13:52, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
      • I've always thought of those two meanings of walk — the dog one and the bike one — as the same, fwiw. The way we now have them worded, they can't be combined, but I wonder whether that's ideal.​—msh210 18:14, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
        • They're related, but since they'd have different translations into other languages, I'd keep them separate. For that matter, even "walk the dog" and "walk someone to their car" have different translations into other languages. Angr 05:19, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Delete.​—msh210 18:14, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Delete (I'd vote the same for mind the gap or mind your head). Mglovesfun (talk) 18:29, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Deleted, per consensus. Mglovesfun (talk) 04:13, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

Transwiki:It should be noted

I think this is a sum of parts it+should+be+noted, it is a literal thought, there's nothing idiomatic about it. It compares to take notice of and it should be noticed in meaning. Goldenrowley 06:03, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Yeah delete, I can't find a redeeming feature. Mglovesfun (talk) 21:11, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
delete as entry.
But it is a locution that is commonly used in various kind of polite or, at least, indirect speech. Should we have some kind of Appendix of indirect expressions. I don't think that WP or Wikt has any depth of material on this subject? This resembles some of the twenty "Language Notes" in Longmans Dictionary of Contemporary English which is for "advanced learners of English". DCDuring TALK 17:18, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
Delete. Equinox 22:26, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

all one's eggs in one basket

We have entries at put all one's eggs in one basket#Verb and don't put your eggs in one basket (redirect) and don't put all your eggs in one basket#Proverb. I don't think the RfDd entry has value at either end of a redirect or in itself. DCDuring TALK 16:58, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

Having said that, the two examples use have instead of put, so maybe this should be the "lemma form" and the others should be redirects, or whatnot. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:57, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Sorry, I neglected to mention that COCA shows "put" to be by far the most common verb with this. The examples would need to change to reflect that. I was thinking to add redirects for the most common variants. The problem is that we have two variables in the formula for generating redirects: "V and NP's eggs in one basket". "Put" and "your" are the most common even after subtracting the usages of the full proverb. Normally I would strongly favor having the shortest phrase. But these formulas aren't fixed, so with our too-simple search users often wouldn't find the lemma. But in this case I was thinking to simply use all the most common collocated forms and redirecting to the verb phrase unless the collocation had "don't" in which case it would go to the proverb.
We need to find out whether Google et al take our redirects seriously. If they don't we may need to somehow stuff these variants into tags that they take seriously or go to soft redirects. Clearly this is getting to be an example of a common generic problem that requires some research and testing, a BP discussion, data collection from corpora like COCA, and some bot work. Of course if we don't want to bother with "imbecilic" (not my word) users we may be able to dispense with such concerns and rely on users to find lemmas. DCDuring TALK 11:56, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

a question of

What we need instead of this IMHO is a usage example at question#Noun. DCDuring TALK 21:16, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

off the phone

on the phone

on the computer

Of all the collocations of off these two were the only ones that seemed non-idiomatic to me. I added the corresponding phrase in on. See also #on the air/#off the air. DCDuring TALK 01:42, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete all three per nom. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:52, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

check it out

Previous discussion: Wiktionary:Requests for deletion?oldid=5014782#check it out.

I think this should be a redirect to check out, but check it out for yourself. DCDuring TALK 21:10, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

Tend to agree, I can't think of any really good examples where it doesn't refer to check out + implied noun. Also, whatever happened to #milk it? Mglovesfun (talk) 21:27, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Strong keep. Once you know the meaning, it's easy to claim that "it" co-refers with some super-secret implied noun, but I don't think someone coming across "So check it out, Sapito tells me you go to college. That true?" (one of the cites Visviva found; see Citations:check it out) would find anything useful at check out. What does the "it" even refer to in that case? To what's about to be said? "So check out this question: Sapito tells me you go to college. That true?"? —RuakhTALK 23:37, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
That said, the entry could perhaps use some improvement. —RuakhTALK 23:41, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
A proper treatment at check out (separate sense, usage examples) with a redirect would satisfy internal search engine users, I think. That's why I suggested the redirect. It is in fact an imperative/hortative/precative form of check out. One non-CFI reason to keep it would be that google doesn't seem to see our redirects and we don't have any program to insert alternative forms into meta tags. I can't make much sense out of the cite Visviva found even with the entry and a native knowledge of what it usually means. There is no other OneLook entry to rely on either. As I had mentioned somewhere previously, there are a good number of entries with this kind of relationship to a phrasal verb. I suppose we could make a case that the existence of so many of these entries means that they seem to contributors to be different in nature from mere SoP constructs. I have noted too the many expressions in which "it" just seems to allow a transitive verb to be used in an intransitive way.
So, if we keep this kind of entry, we get more google hits and satisfy more imbecilic users who don't seem to know how find the meaning they need in our lemmas. How should the entry look? It is used as a full sentence of independent clause, sometimes as a sentence adverb. It's PoS is best deemed "Phrase". (I can't bring myself to use "Idiom".) It seems to have both idiomatic sense(s) and too many non-idiomatic senses to exhaustively show for contrast.
In addition to some of these in Category:English sentences, we would find more among multi-word verb entries, some using the infl template, others using en-verb, perhaps with inf=. It should be possible to generate properly formatted entries, senses or sections fairly easily. DCDuring TALK 01:20, 26 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't know. I guess I'd want to see what you have in mind for [[check out]]. The current entry definitely would not help someone who came across this usage. —RuakhTALK 03:28, 26 July 2009 (UTC)
Hey, man. Got a great way of presenting this kind of entry! Check it out!. DCDuring TALK 01:13, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
I think the speech act rationale for inclusion is good, but not necessarily as a main entry. I don't know what the best way is to attract "imbeciles" via Google, but one of hard redirects, soft redirects, or metatags might enable use to have high search-engine visibility (for alternative forms) and good, maintainable target content at one entry. Not that I would really object to having at least one separate entry for an imperative form of all transitive verbs used this way and some other verb phrases. After all we already have plenty analogous entries of that form such as damn it and sod off. If taking the emotional component our makes it not an interjection, then its something else: a Phrase, a Sentence, or [your choice here]. DCDuring TALK 01:39, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
Looks good; good work! I'd be down with a redirect to what you just did.
BTW, can you stop with the whole "imbeciles" thing? AFAICT there's only one editor who feels that way, and anyway, it'll look bad when our discussion pages start turning up as the first Google-hits for that word. :-P
RuakhTALK 02:01, 27 July 2009 (UTC)


Discussion moved from Wiktionary:Requests for verification.

Just checking: do we accept mnemonics? There's a big slippery slope out there. SemperBlotto 15:00, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

p.s. But an appendix would be a good idea.

See also pemdas (which should probably be moved to PEMDAS) and BODMAS. If we keep this, what about my very excellent mother just served us nine pickles?  :-)  Anyway, isn't this a question for RFD? — I mean, there's certainly attestation of this term; the nominator seems to be asking whether it's idiomatic.—msh210 16:38, 15 September 2008 (UTC)


Discussion moved from Wiktionary:Requests for verification.

The full systematic name of an organic compound. There are an infinite number of these - is anyone going to look them up? SemperBlotto 22:21, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

No, but someone's probably going to vomit up the sad old argument about supposedly "unlimited" disk space meaning we should include every fictional name anybody has ever whimsically bestowed on a toenail. More seriously: I am not a chemist, but are you saying there is an infinite number of possible chemical compounds? That seems bizarre. Could these Ns be replaced with actual constants to give various different compounds? Would those be separate words? Are there words for compounds that physically couldn't exist? etc. ... Chemical compounds seem like something that need their own entire Wiktionary policy. Equinox 22:31, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
Even if there are an infinite number of possible chemical compounds (which I don't doubt, but I, too, am no chemist), there must of necessity be a finite number of attested names of such.—msh210 22:40, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
What, now all of a sudden we've decided to list only things that exist? 19:51, 4 February 2009 (UTC)
My question didn't imply that. Equinox 17:29, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
I thik that what I was implying is that it is a sum-of-parts that can be picked apart by an organic chemist. The N- means the following radical is attached via a nitrogen atom, then we have a string of radicals and finally a base compound. SemperBlotto 19:56, 4 February 2009 (UTC)
The question then becomes: Which chemical names do we include, and which do we exclude? The term sodium chloride is "sum of parts", but the chemical combination has properties very different from the components. You can't understand what the compound is by looking up sodium and chloride; you only get its chemical recipe that way. Much as I dread a flood of minimally useful chemical name entries, I think we ought to allow them. --EncycloPetey 03:26, 8 February 2009 (UTC)
Keep, per above. Next question, is this "English" or translingual? Mglovesfun (talk) 04:10, 28 July 2009 (UTC)