Talk:been

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English homophones[edit]

At the time of writing, bin and Ben are listed as homophones. I believe the respective IPA spellings of these word are: /bɪn/ , /bɛn/ . However, the only phonetic spellings (US) given for been are /ˈbɪn/ and /bɪn/. Thus it seems that Ben is not a homophone, except in certain dialects (i.e. the pin/pen merger). Attys 18:43, 23 May 2011 (UTC)[reply]

Or the phonetic spellings are incomplete. Personally, my strong/stressed pronunciation of this word is /bɛn/; it's a homophone of Ben but not of bin, which are not merged in my dialect. —Angr 16:41, 7 July 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Yes check.svg Done Fixed at some stage. Equinox 21:18, 7 November 2017 (UTC)[reply]

US pronunciations[edit]

It should be possible to combine the stressed and unstressed US pronunciations, if the only difference is that the stressed pronunciation is stressed. We don't usually indicate stress (with marks) in the transcription of monosyllabic words, though I can understand why it's done in the UK transcription, where more than just the stress differs (the vowel length also differs). - -sche (discuss) 08:56, 4 July 2012 (UTC)[reply]

"Been" as a synonym of "gone"[edit]

Where is this usage? You know, as in the sentence "Have you been to France?" It's only in the perfect tense; you can't say *"Do you are to France?" or *"Will you be to France?". —⁠This unsigned comment was added by 72.76.95.136 (talk) at 13:06, 2 December 2020 (UTC).[reply]

The infinitive of be is be, not been[edit]

@Hazarasp: The word, "been," is a past participle, as correctly identified in sense #1. It's already identified as dialectal in sense #3. Attempting to identify it as an infinitive, in the nonstandard manner used in the quotes, muddies the linguistic waters. The quotes themselves aren't asserting what you've described about them. It's inconclusive whether the quotes are dialectal (as you maintain) or merely cited from poorly edited sources. This is Wiktionary, not Wikipedia, where there are articles suited to the point you're trying to make. Besides, if Wiktionary included a reputedly dialectal-but-rare sense and charitable-but-misguided linguistic analysis for every nonstandard syntax ever uttered, then ... you get the point. --Kent Dominic (talk) 15:33, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

To me the citations under the "infinitive" definition read as if a form of the auxiliary have has been omitted. An example of such an omission without to would be "He been down to North Carolina.". Omission would be a more natural derivation of the usage than that been has become a new infinitive. Should there be examples of infinitive use of been that could not be interpreted as such omission, that would be evidence that been is an infinitive for some speakers. DCDuring (talk) 16:44, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The "infinitive been" probably originated as a past participle, but I'm not sure that's the best synchronic interpretation (note that the OED interprets it as a infinitive). None of the examples appear to be semantically perfect; in fact, the first two read somewhat nonsensically if you interpret them that way (compare used to be cold and used to be more of vs. used to have been cold and used to have been more of, though the latter kind of construction is attested). If possible, it might be best to reword the sense in a analysis-neutral way. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 17:12, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Additionally, I don't believe that the current wording at be leaves us open to a past participial interpretation of this sense (not that it can't be changed, though it might've been adopted for a good reason). Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 17:17, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Hazarasp: OED interprets been as a infinitive? Really? Which edition of which century? (Hint: It's not so entered in anything I've ever seen though I've done an exhaustive etymological study of it.) In every etymology of every source I've read, "be" and only "be" is the infinitive of "be." Caveat: "be" can be used both as an infinitive in a non-finite sense as well as without inflection in a finite sense, e.g. "Peace be with you" or "So be it" in the form of fossil phrases. "He be mad" or "He have to been mad" entail dialectal usage of an infinitive as a finite verb and a past participle as an infinitive (respectively, as part of verb phrase ellipses; see more below), but such aberrant usage makes neither "be" immo vero finite nor "been" immo vero infinitive from a taxonomic POV.
The entry's "infinitive of be" is the root of the problem. Is I've already mentioned, it's oxymoronic. In English, the to-infinitive concept is about as linguistically axiomatic as it gets. If you want to cite some source of some pidgin dialect that includes "I use' to felt so cold right first of the winter" as an instance of felt-as-a-finite-verb I won't give up on you as a human being but I won't trust another linguistic analysis you post thereafter. --Kent Dominic (talk) 18:54, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The edition I'm using is 3rd edition (the particular entry was revised on November 2010). Here's the relevant section (ellipses and underlining is mine):
  • 2013 March 1, “be, v.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required[1], Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press:
    Forms: (The following notation is used to denote the principal form groups: α = am; β = is; γ = sind; δ = sīe; ε = art, ζ = are; η = be; θ = was; ι = were.) 1. Infinitive. a. (i). [] Middle English–1500s (1900s– U.S. regional (southern)) been []
As an example of the "U.S. regional (southern)" use of been for the infinitive, it uses the same DARE quote I added:
  • 2013 March 1, “be, v.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required[2], Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press:
    1966 in Dict. Amer. Regional Eng. (1985) I. 179/1 But one time it use' to been so cold right first of the winter.
By the way, the OED mentions other dialectal forms such as bei and beigh; there's even one attestation of a infinitive form yiz (clearly = standard is). These forms contravene your claim that only be is the infinitive of be.
Forms like "He be mad" do not necessarily entail dialectal usage of the infinitive in finite contexts. be can simply be analysed as a finite form in those dialects, as the difference between "finite" and "infinitive" forms is functional, not formal; i.e. we classify a given form of a verb as a infinitive because it has a certain grammatical role rather than a certain phonological shape. Additionally, the English participle (whether past or present) isn't usually considered to be "finite"; it is non-finite, just like the infinitive.
This means that if I had a form like "I used to felt so cold", I would consider it a infinitive, since it behaves like one grammatically. I would probably want to acknowledge that it originally came from the past participle, but that doesn't mean it is one in the current language. In fact, a situation like this has actually occurred in the standard language. The infinitive of the Modern English verb shape does not actually derive from the (Anglian) Old English infinitive form sċeppan (we'd get *shep if it did). Instead, it was rebuilt on the past participle ġesċeapen, but nobody claims the infinitive shape is actually a past participle.
By the way, I don't understand where you've got the idea that I want to interpret forms of this type as finite, as I haven't suggested any such thing. For my views on constructions of the type "He have to been mad", see my response below to your other comment. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 20:01, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
If you continually conflate taxonomy and usage, there's little point in discussing this further. --Kent Dominic (talk) 20:53, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Any sane morphological analysis must take semantics into account; after all, when you talk about "usage", morphological variables are a good part of what's been used. What you're trying to do amounts to trying to separate bread and butter. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 21:49, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@DCDuring: Your post rightfully stirs a huge linguistic hornet's nest re. "infinitive" as it relates to this topic. Wiktionary's infinitive definition, i.e. "A non-finite verb form," is ever so slightly off since it's stated in absolute terms. Wikipedia's entry is broader i.e., that infinitives are "most often used as non-finite verbs." Under either definition, the auxiliary verb have indeed is infinitive when it complements a modal verb, e.g. "I might have been there" versus the finite "I have been there." Your example, "He been down to North Carolina," absolutely occurs in dialectal instances. The thing is, Hazarasp (talkcontribs) wants to call "been" an infinitive in that case. Usage-wise, he makes a fair point. Yet, linguistically speaking, we already have a term for such phenomena: verb phrase ellipsis. The Wikipedia article covers it only as it pertains to anaphora, but there's more to it than that. It applies even in a truncation like "I coulda been there." In southern U.S. folks often use double modals like "I might could have been there." Do we really want to go down the road of saying "I could been there" entails "could" as a non-finite verb in the dialectally elliptical sense of a double modal phrase? The linguistic sinkholes down that road would be never ending. --Kent Dominic (talk) 18:54, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
No, I don't want to call "been" a infinitive in cases like "He been down to North Carolina"; that is a preposterous absurdity. I'm discussing the particular construction I added here. Additionally, I'm fully aware of the ellipsis of have; I just do not believe constructions like "But one time it use' to been so cold" should necessarily be analysed as instances of it. I acknowledge that these constructions may have historically originated as ellipsis, but I believe that there's a good chance that speakers have reinterpreted them as infinitives. I justify this on semantic grounds; the sense is that of "But one time it used to be cold", not "But one time it used to have been cold"; i.e. it behaves like a infinitive, not a participle semantically. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 20:01, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
You don't want to call "been" a[n] infinitive in cases like "He been down to North Carolina." So far, so good. Now look again at the entry:
been
4. (dialectal, rare) infinitive of be
You gots some mansplainin' to do. --Kent Dominic (talk) 20:46, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
You are being obtuse. Just because I believe that some non-standard uses of been should be analysed as infinitives doesn't mean that all of them can be analysed that way. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 21:49, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
All I'm trying to do is to illustrate a (admittedly rare and nonstandard) sense of been. There is no greater "point I'm trying to make"; the sense (noted by both the DARE and the OED) is listed separately as it's clearly distinct from sense 3. Your claim that the quotes are "cited from poorly edited sources" doesn't have any backing other than your distaste for what the sources say. Even if it was true, it wouldn't invalidate the sense; sloppily-edited sources can actually provide important evidence for nonstandard or dialectal forms which would've been ironed out with "better" editing. Furthermore, been can be interpreted as a infinitive of be here, as it's used in what could be construed as a infinitival sense (though note @DCDuring's comment above). Your statement that this is impossible is nothing more than unhelpful circular reasoning. Finally, Wiktionarians should in fact be striving to include "every nonstandard syntax uttered". Our watchword of "every word in every language" compels us to include both the highfalutin phraseology of press conferences and the earthy vulgarities of trailer parks. This doesn't "muddy the linguistic waters"; it clarifies them by making seen what was unseen. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 17:12, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I'm no prescriptivist, so I'm not disparaging the usage ascribed to the sources. You're wrong to presume I have a distaste for the quotes since I appreciate how they said what they said however they said it in a way that's readily understandable language. Yet, attempting to apply an "infinitive of be" analysis to the quotes' dynamic is the linguistic shortcoming. You picked the wrong template for the wrong purpose. Is "to been" an inflection of "be"? Sorry, but no. Is "been" an infinitive? Nope. Indeed, "been" is inflected as a past participle and complements "to" in the examples you gave, but "been" sho nuf don't be and hella ain't never right use' to been no infinitive. --Kent Dominic (talk) 19:17, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

@Hazarasp: The "every word in every language" credo rightly inspires chronicling the broadest range of lexical usage. That doesn't entitle contributors to arbitrarily or hastily pull from a grab-bag of linguistic terms and apply them at random to stuff we find from obscure sources. Your quotes didn't muddy the linguistic waters; you did it yourself by choosing unfortunate topical lines that mischaracterize the sense of the source's nonstandard utterances.

But, don't fault yourself if it later occurs to you how you mix-matched the sources and your analysis. Wiktionary's choice of templates are partly to blame, but the linguistic taxons we've inherited are problematic in themselves. I hardly expect them to apply neatly to ever-changing patterns of syntax, so there's no reason to think they'll fit better when it comes to dialectal rarities. Accordingly, I couldn't care less if you cited a source that had said something like something like, "I axed him where he be'd at on yesterday." Go ahead and enter "axed" as a dialectal variant of "asked;" likewise enter "be'd" as a dialectal variant of "was." Yet, I'll read you the riot act if you, as a linguistic wannabe or without due diligence, assert stuff like:

  • "I axed him where he be'd at on yesterday" is substandard or "ungrammatical." (They're neither. They're nonstandard and entirely grammatical in the context of certain dialectal patterns.)
  • "at" is a preposition in the above quote. (Wrong! it's a postposition)
  • "be'd" is a finite, inflected infinitive of be. (FN stupidity. It's finite and it's an infinitive despite how traditional grammar says it can't be both, but it's inflected No, wait - it's nonfinite in form and it's uninflected. I give up. Traditional taxons are useless in this case just as they were in your sense #4. That's why I said you're better off at Wikipedia where there's more room to explain stuff.)
  • "on yesterday" is pleonasm. (Sorry, but no. At least not according to U.S. southerners who routinely say "On yesterday" or "on tomorrow" just as others say "on the day after tomorrow" or as Britishers say "I asked him where he was at this weekend."

Yep, "at the weekend" is a standard British English prepositional phrase. Americans might construe it as, "I asked him where he was //at (PREPOSITION) this weekend." After all this, if you want to create an at-at page explaining how "I axed him where he be'd at (POSTPOSITION) at (PREPOSITION) this weekend" is completely grammatical given the above, more power to you. --Kent Dominic (talk) 20:37, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

If you believe that my analysis of been is erroneous, explain why you think that rather than repeatedly saying that I'm wrong. Right now, I know what I think and I know what you think, but you're not giving me any reason to seriously consider what you think ("Sorry, but no." doesn't cut the mustard). Going on unrelated tangents about flawed linguistic analyses and terminology, how you don't like prescriptivist ideology (I don't really disagree with you there) and how Wikipedia is better for my purposes (it really isn't) isn't any more helpful; You're free to have those opinions, but we need to keep on topic. It's also worth noting that you were the one who started talking about "finite" verbs; don't blame me for introducing that terminological mire. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 21:49, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Merriam-Webster

been verb Definition of been past participle of BE

Merriam-Webster: been

Oxford English

VERB past participle of be

Lexico: been

Etymonline

been (v.) past participle of be.

etymonline.com: been

For more: 26 analogous sources here. An admission: I'm calling "been" a past participle only in the context of this article and only regarding this site because that's the recognized consensus. In my own lexicon, been is a perfective participle. The past participle term itself is mentioned only once in my lexicon. (In the entry where its sense is defined, it's noted only for its persistent use despite conceptual shortcomings that have been obsoleted by contemporary thinking.) Regardless of how I would label "been" elsewhere, it doesn't change how your label here lacks merit. I've said why you're wrong from the beginning. Look at the first sentence of this thread for a reminder.
Thanks for noting that I first flagged the issue of finiteness. Kick yourself for not considering it from square one. Hence: oxymoron applies. And you say I'm the one being obtuse? I'll forgive anyone who doesn't know the difference between (a) been as a past participle form of "be," (b) been having finite usage as a form of "be," and (c) been having nonfinite usage as a form of "be," which is true as applied to the examples in sense #4. And I'll even forgive you for all of your blather if you admit not knowing the difference between a nonfinite verb and an infinitive verb. Once you get that straight, you just might see that "been: an infinitive of 'be'" is irredeemably pinheaded linguistic babble. Perhaps what you meant was "been: a nonfinite form of 'be, which would correct in your examples, but needless to be pointed out since anyone who cares anything about linguistic taxons already knows that. If you're one who doesn't, you really shouldn't be labeling stuff anyway, indiscriminately or otherwise.
If you STILL can't keep up, consider this: you chose the "infinitive of be" template as the label for your examples. It's the FN wrong template, wrong label. Check how it's encoded, i.e. as an inflection of the English infinitive, "be." If you insist that "been" or any other English verb participle can simultaneously constitute both an inflection AND an infinitive, please point me to the nearest brick wall. I'm sure to have better luck there arguing that "the number 5 is both prime and non-prime" than I've had with you so far. Dude, change the template or correct the label manually. --Kent Dominic (talk) 01:59, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
P.S. Did you bother to read the title of this thread? --Kent Dominic (talk) 02:16, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I'll deal with each of your points sequentially:
  • I have never denied that been can function as a past participle. However, I don't think the use of it described by sense 4 should be analysed as a past participle. That should be obvious from my edits at been and my replies to you.
  • You can call been a "perfective participle" if you want. However, here at Wiktionary, we try to employ standard terminology, even though it may be flawed. That's the tricky thing about standards; you end up having to use them even if there are better alternatives.
  • You still haven't provided any concrete reasoning for why been cannot be analysed as a infinitive in this situation. Let's unpack

The word, "been," is a past participle, as correctly identified in sense #1.

This is a unevidenced assertion. It is also irrelevant; sense 1 is not under dispute here.

It's already identified as dialectal in sense #3.

That is besides the point, as sense 3 isn't under dispute here either. We are discussing sense 4. It may be that you don't think sense 4 is sufficiently distinct from the other senses, but you'll need to prove that.

Attempting to identify it as an infinitive, in the nonstandard manner used in the quotes, muddies the linguistic waters.

This is another assertion that lacks any supporting evidence.
In short, you've said that you think I'm wrong, but you've neglected to say said why you think I'm wrong; you haven't even attempted to construct anything resembling a proof. It is incredibly frustrating arguing with someone who seems to think they're above dealing with silly little things such as "evidence".
  • I cannot understand why you think I don't understand the difference between infinitives and non-finite forms. As evidenced by my above comments, I understand the distinction perfectly well. When I assert that been can be a infinitive of be, I say what I mean and I mean what I say. It might be that you're unable to comprehend why somebody might think like I do, but that isn't my problem. I've tried explaining it to you too many times; maybe ask the OED editors.

Check how it's encoded, i.e. as an inflection of the English infinitive, "be."

  • I don't necessarily agree that it should be encoded that way; I just reinstated {{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}}, as that was what the page had before you deleted the sense back last year. {{alternative form of|en|be|pos=infinitive}} would be more consistent with how infinitives are handled elsewhere, but it would cohere less well with senses 1-3. However, you haven't been arguing that infinitives shouldn't be encoded like that; the argument that you've been making is that (sense 4 of) been shouldn't be considered a infinitive.
Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 09:19, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Hazarasp: Please see the prolix below.--Kent Dominic (talk) 18:36, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

@Hazarasp:
Preliminary matters for general consideration, not rebuttal:

  1. I commend your passion for all of the above. Does your passion match mine? Hmm.
  2. It doesn’t matter to me how you think, or what and how you think about what and how I might think. What matters to me is the import of the text evident in your posts and your edits.
  3. Please refrain from further comment about what and how you think about what and how I might think. It’s not productive of resolving the matter at hand.
  4. For the record, ad hominem comments like “you’re being obtuse” don’t faze me. Nonetheless, I urge you to use caution concerning any such attack on an editor, especially one that happens to be a thin-skinned admin. Other contributors have been blocked for less.

Rhetorical matters regarding semantics and debate logic:
1. In your next-to-last post, you claimed that I’ve neglected to say why you’re wrong. False. In fact, I’d said:

  • “You’re wrong to presume I have a distaste for the quotes.” I stand by that statement, and I typically neglect to qualify why presumptuous assertions are ipso facto wrong.
  • “You picked the wrong template for the wrong purpose.” I also stand by that assertion.
  • “Your label here lacks merit. I've said why you're wrong from the beginning,” which I admit is an uncharacteristic semantic slip of the tongue. To rephrase it: Your label here lacks merit. I’ve said why it’s wrong from the beginning.

2. In your most recent post, you said:

  • “If you believe that my analysis of been is erroneous, explain why you think that rather than repeatedly saying that I'm wrong.” In reply, I’d said, “you’re wrong to presume…” Otherwise, I couldn’t care less if you’re right or wrong and I’m not trying to convince you, nor do I habitually attempt to convince anyone, that I’m right. On the contrary, I hope to make my reasoning evident through argumentation and try to elicit agreement with my conclusions.
  • “It is incredibly frustrating arguing with someone who seems to think they're above dealing with silly little things such as ‘evidence.’” I credit that observation for not being ad hominem. Let me just make it clear that, beyond the definitional sources I quoted above, the only thing that I’m trying to make evident is the persuasiveness of my argument that the label for sense #4 is farcically, tragically, or in either case oxymoronically and otherwise ridiculously wrong.

Substantive matters regarding sense #4:

  1. I had said, “The word, ‘been,’ is a past participle, as correctly identified in sense #1.” You replied, “This is a[n] (sic) unevidenced assertion.” False. I provided 29 sources as evidence.
  2. You continued, “It is also irrelevant; sense 1 is not under dispute here.” It’s contextually relevant; that sense #1 is not under dispute is well noted.
  3. I had said, “[Been is] already identified as dialectal in sense #3.” You replied, “That is besides the point.” I disagree. It provides contextual evidence on the chance that sense #4 is ultimately deleted in its entirety. You further replied, “Sense 3 isn't under dispute here either.” Conceded, but the dialectal usage of sense #3 is contextually relevant on the chance that sense #4 is ultimately deleted in its entirety or merged in part with sense #3.
  4. I had said, “Attempting to identify [the #4 sense of "been"] as an infinitive, in the nonstandard manner used in the quotes, muddies the linguistic waters.” You replied, “This is another assertion that lacks any supporting evidence.” Touché, but it wasn’t offered as an evidentiary assertion. It’s a blatantly conclusionary assertion regarding the dynamics that occur whenever linguistic term A doesn’t neatly match linguistic item B. To expand on that conclusionary aside, IMHO, muddying the linguistic waters isn’t necessarily bad, but ought to be avoided when there are simpler solutions. (A concession: I should have said "attempting to label" instead of "attempting to identify.)

Procedural chronology regarding sense #4:

  1. You initially posted sense #4 without any quotations. Absent the quotations that have since made your intentions clear, I stand by that first decision to delete it, and I stand by my edit summary.
  2. You restored sense #4 to its original, with the edit summary, “‘I’m referring to something distinct from ‘habitual been.’”
  3. I again deleted sense #4 in the absence of any source to justify whatever it was that you were trying convey in the entry.
  4. You again restored sense #4 to its original, again alleging a distinct usage that you had in mind but again without sources.
  5. I posted this thread on the entry's discussion page.
  6. Anticipating an edit war, I immediately thereafter prepared an RFD template and a corresponding RFD post. When I attempted to upload the RFD template, the entry page wouldn’t allow it. The error message said there’d been an intervening edit requiring reloading the page. That’s when I saw you’d subsequently added sources, which made your intention evident. Yet, you’d neglected to change the “{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}” template, which I considered either an oversight or a forgivable matter of ignorance.
  7. Two of those sources, however, I deemed to be copyediting errors, not dialectal usage. All three sources accorded with your implicit intent but, in my view, the presumptive copyediting errors are superfluous examples that are merely coincidental to the one from DARE.
  8. I posted the RFD template and also posted an RFD thread linked to been, sense #4.
  9. So far, the RFD thread indicates a consensus to keep sense #4 but either to RFV or delete the two sources other than the one from DARE.

Note: Because you haven’t commented in the RFD thread, I suspect you haven’t read it. If not, read it at Requests for deletion: English, "been" sense #4.

Epitaph regarding sense #4:

  1. You most recently said, “I don't necessarily agree that it should be encoded [as “{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}]. That. my friend, I deem to be an unarguably reasonable take on this matter.
  2. You said, “{alternative form of|en|be|pos=infinitive} would be more consistent with how infinitives are handled elsewhere.” Finally you’ve address the bedrock of my steadfast, stubborn prolixity in this thread!
  3. You said, “… but [{alternative form of|en|be|pos=infinitive}] would cohere less well with senses 1-3.” Let me remind you that the earlier mentions of senses #1-3 are contextually relevant to the discussion in this thread, but you yourself indicated that muddying the linguistic water (my words, not yours) is not relevant to the label for sense #4. Muddying it manually in the way you just proposed is necessary in this case; muddying in the way of your last reversion will land earn you a lawsuit for semantic malpractice in CCLM (i.e. the Court of Commons for Linguistic Malfeasance).
  4. Given your last two comments as just quoted, and in light of the consensus in the RFD thread, I’m going to:
  • Change the label template to what you just proposed.
  • Delete all the two quotations other than the one from DARE.

Agreed?

A trivial matter regarding sense #4: You said, “The argument that you've been making is that (sense 4 of) been shouldn't be considered a[n] (sic) infinitive.” False. That, apparently, is the argument you’ve been construing. The argument that I've been failing to adequately communicate, at least until your most recent post, is that sense #4 shouldn't "infinitive" as its label.

Post script: I really have enjoyed reading the majority of your posts. I’ll save some further thoughts for you own talk page. --Kent Dominic (talk) 18:36, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]


A response to your summary[edit]

Please do not respond to this. What's done is done.

Capitulum I: Præludium[edit]

  • While I believe you have a few valid points here, I think, on the whole, that you're taking liberties with the evidence in your pursuit to portray me as being unreasonably uncomprehending; this was probably not helped by my aggressive attitude towards you.
  • In fact, your general attitude was that I'm some kind of blinkered neophyte who needs to be larned a lesson (though you grew more conciliatory in your last post). This is unwarranted; consider the following:
  • Our respective edit counts (at last count, 50,473 vs. 673)
  • Our average activity levels (mine is 3x higher than yours)
  • Our respective familiarity with Wiktionary procedure (for instance, you seemed to be unfamiliar with the attestation criteria)
  • Unfortunately, some of the matters you submitted for "general consideration, but not rebuttal" do in fact warrant rebuttal:

It doesn’t matter to me how you think, or what and how you think about what and how I might think. What matters to me is the import of the text evident in your posts and your edits.

  • The "import of the text evident in my posts and my edits" is a product of my thought processes; it is also indirectly contingent on your thought, as mediated through your posts that I respond to. While the underlying thought processes of participants in a dispute may attain a greater or lesser degree of prominence depending on its nature, they are never immaterial. Therefore, they shouldn't be entirely excluded, like you seem to be trying to do ("please refrain from..."). For me here, they were actually unimportant beyond a relatively superficial level; my remark that "Right now, I know what I think and I know what you think, but you're not giving me any reason to seriously consider what you think" was basically a incredibly verbose way of saying "You aren't making any cogent arguments for your case". It should not be took to mean that I was trying to psychoanalyse you.

Nonetheless, I urge you to use caution concerning any such attack on an editor, especially one that happens to be a thin-skinned admin. Other contributors have been blocked for less.

  • I would urge you to consider the possibility that you may have contributed to the rhetorical environment which has led me to lash out at you (I'm not saying that I'm blameless or anything).

Capitulum II: De Rethorica[edit]

That's a perfectly good Medieval Latin form of rhetorica.

1. In your next-to-last post, you claimed that I’ve neglected to say why you’re wrong []

  • Firstly, your claim that "You’re wrong to presume I have a distaste for the quotes" does not stand up to the evidence; for instance, you claimed that they were "poorly edited sources" (implying that they ought to have little to no evidentiary value). Later in your response to me, you suggest that two of them should be removed; if that isn't distaste, what is?
  • Later on, when you switched tacks to talking about how I had "the wrong template for the wrong purpose", you provided little in the way of substantiation for that claim. You did proceed to point out that Wiktionary typically lemmatises infinitives rather than using templates of the type {{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}}, but you didn't state upfront that this was (now) the crux of your problem, and failed to actually consider the situation beyond pointing out the fact. I needed to explicitly tell you that I just reinstated the template that you deleted last year rather than making a conscious decision to select that template. You never seemed to consider the possibility that maybe the situation called for a departure from regular Wiktionary practice (not that I necessarily agree with that view).

2. In your most recent post, you said []

  • To me, your first point basically boils down to "I don't try to convince people of my views, but I do try to convince people of my views". Here, you're trying to draw a distinction between "convincing people" and "eliciting agreement with your conclusions", but I'm not convinced that such a fundamental distinction exists, at least not in the way that you're defining it. Both boil down to the same basic activity: shoving stuff in peoples' faces' (metaphorically) so they think what you want them to. Differences in approach, temperament, etc. are secondary.
  • When I say you've got the attitude that you're "above dealing with silly little things like evidence", I mean that you spend a lot of time talking about the "persuasiveness of your argument" and how what I'm advocating "farcically, tragically, or in either case oxymoronically and otherwise ridiculously wrong", but spend little time setting out your actual argument. I suppose that's a consequence of "not trying to convince me". Your convictions about the "persuasiveness of your argument" didn't help; they probably resulted your argument not being as strong as it could've been.

Capitulum III: De Materia[edit]

I had said, “The word, ‘been,’ is a past participle, as correctly identified in sense #1.” You replied, “This is a[n] (sic) unevidenced assertion.” False. I provided 29 sources as evidence.

  • The context of that assertion (above, I talked about been being "analysed as a infinitive in this situation") clearly indicates that I was referring to sense 4, not any generic use of been.

It’s contextually relevant; that sense #1 is not under dispute is well noted.

  • It was only "contextually relevant" because you had misinterpreted the context (see above).

It provides contextual evidence on the chance that sense #4 is ultimately deleted in its entirety.

  • Contextual evidence for what, exactly? The dialectal status of sense 3 or sense 4 is not under dispute. I'm not arguing that they can't be merged because one of them isn't dialectal (I mention this because that's the only plausible scenario I can think of where this is relevant).

It’s a blatantly conclusionary assertion regarding the dynamics that occur whenever linguistic term A doesn’t neatly match linguistic item B.

  • It is usual for conclusions to come after the evidence. That is all I will say about this particular matter.

Capitulum IV: De Chronologia[edit]

You initially posted sense #4 without any quotations. Absent the quotations that have since made your intentions clear, I stand by that first decision to delete it, and I stand by my edit summary.

  • Unless the edit is obviously ill-thought, nonsensical, or inappropriate, it isn't accepted practice how thangs air did roun' them there parts to revert edits. If there's any chance of controversy. Given that I very intentionally reinstated a sense you very intentionally deleted, you should've realised this. Therefore I felt justified in reinstating it; while it is nice to have evidence of use (in the form of quotations), the burden of proof is always on the person wanting to revert. It is also worth noting that your unilateral deletion made me quite annoyed; it is probably the single biggest contributing factor to the combative attitude I have displayed.

I again deleted sense #4 in the absence of any source to justify whatever it was that you were trying convey in the entry.

This is not assuming good faith; it is instead assuming bad faith (note the redlink).

you’d neglected to change the “{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}” template, which I considered either an oversight or a forgivable matter of ignorance.

There's a third option that you refused to consider; that I legitimately disagreed with you about template usage. People do not have to be "ignorant" to disagree with you.

Two of those sources, however, I deemed to be copyediting errors, not dialectal usage.

Even assuming that they're copyediting errors, it doesn't follow that they should be removed. The (copy)editing process doesn't just remove typos; it also removes genuine linguistic forms that that are deemed nonstandard.

[] are superfluous examples that are merely coincidental to the one from DARE.

It is no coincidence that I added three, not two, four, or any other number of examples. Wiktionary's criteria for inclusion requires that terms need to be attested in "at least three independent instances spanning at least a year". The general consensus is that this also applies to senses, hence the three quotes.

So far, the RFD thread indicates a consensus to keep sense #4 but either to RFV or delete the two sources other than the one from DARE.

This simply isn't true. There appears to be a diversity of views, but no consensus has crystallised.

Capitulum V: De Formulis[edit]

Let me remind you that the earlier mentions of senses #1-3 are contextually relevant to the discussion in this thread, but you yourself indicated that muddying the linguistic water (my words, not yours) is not relevant to the label for sense #4.

Things can come in and out of relevance depending on the specifics of the situation. Thus, I would argue that while senses 1-3 are generally irrelevant, they are relevant when considering the aesthetic makeup of the page (replace {{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}} with {{alternative form of|en|be|pos=infinitive}} to see what I mean).

you a lawsuit for semantic malpractice in CCLM (i.e. the Court of Commons for Linguistic Malfeasance).

This should properly be stylistic malpractice, since the semantics are the same; what differs is the presentation. I also don't see why this is litigable.

# Given your last two comments as just quoted, and in light of the consensus in the RFD thread, I’m going to:

  • Change the label template to what you just proposed.
  • Delete all the two quotations other than the one from DARE.

Even if what you were saying was true, it would be awfully premature to do that before the RFD process has completed.

Capitulum VI: Conclusio[edit]

You said, “The argument that you've been making is that (sense 4 of) been shouldn't be considered a[n] (sic) infinitive.” False. That, apparently, is the argument you’ve been construing.

It is the argument I've been construing for very good reason, given it's the argument you initially made. I mean, you entitled this section "The infinitive of be is be, not been". The most reasonable, straightforwards interpretation of what you said is that it reflects a belief that been shouldn't be considered a infinitive (sounds familiar?). It cannot reasonably be interpreted to mean "that sense #4 shouldn't "infinitive" as its label", regardless of whether that was what you meant or not.

To wrap up, I'd like to terminate this discussion. Now that there's a discussion at RFD, it's became redundant and has ceased to further either of our goals. If you want to write a short postscript, that's fine, but I won't take kindly to you wanting to relitigate the totality of my response to you. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 16:26, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

verb sense #4 example[edit]

The example, I couldn't play yesterday because of my surgery, but I wanted to been out there with my team, accounts for either a "wanted to be" interpretation or a "wanted to have been" interpretation in the alternative. --Kent Dominic (talk) 12:28, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Verb 1.1.2 senses #2 and #3[edit]

It pains me to see (Southern US, African-American Vernacular) in the label for those two senses. Not that it doesn't apply, but how it might mislead a reader into thinking that their usage is unique to African American Vernacular. I've been to every region of southern US, where the use of sense #2 is prevalent regardless of ethnicity, income, education level - you name it. Don't know if the same is true of sense #3, but I would imagine the same dynamic is at work. --Kent Dominic (talk) 07:48, 5 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]

{{lb|x|y}} is often used to mean {{lb|x|or|y}}, even when it's ambiguous. The fuller {{lb|x|or|y}} is is also often found; there's nothing stopping it from being changed to that, as I've just done. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 07:53, 5 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]

RFD discussion: June–October 2021[edit]

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The following discussion has been moved from Wiktionary:Requests for deletion (permalink).

This discussion is no longer live and is left here as an archive. Please do not modify this conversation, but feel free to discuss its conclusions.


been, sense #4

The word, "been," is a past participle, as correctly identified in sense #1. It's already identified as dialectal in sense #3. Identifying it as an infinitive as attempted via sense #4, is at first glance meaningless and frightfully redundant. It's an inconclusive stretch that the related quotes are dialectal (as maintained) or merely cited from poorly edited sources. If Wiktionary included a reputedly dialectal sense and charitable but misguided linguistic analysis for every nonstandard syntax ever uttered, then ... you get the point. Comments? --Kent Dominic (talk) 15:35, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Merge with sense 3, send to RFV if those cites look too much like typos. Troll Control (talk) 16:02, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Move to rfv. I think both sides in this dispute are off base: the DARE quote looks real, so it's not just someone's imagination, but the other two quotes look more like random errors than intentional use as an infinitive. I especially doubt that any professional content in the LA Times would ever use rare dialectal forms on purpose except in sentences intended to be viewed as dialectal. Chuck Entz (talk) 16:29, 27 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I'm not challenging the validity of the quotes. I'm simply dealing with a contributor who seems to think the #4 sense of "been" should be labeled as "a (sic) infinitive" given the "to been" verbiage in the quotes. Instead of deleting the entire sense, deleting the label (or at least changing it from infinitive to nonfinite for anyone who cares to know) might work, but ... let's just say some editors are more familiar with linguistic matters than others. --Kent Dominic (talk) 04:09, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The concept of a "random error" is vague. It can either refer to typos, which I don't think are particularly likely in this situation (they'd necessitate the addition of two whole letters!), or a non-standard form slipping past the editing process, which would make for a perfectly valid example. Non-standard forms have slipped past editors working at reputable publishing firms before:
  • 1997 January 5, M. Y. S. Lee; P. Spencer, “Crown Clades and Taxonomic Stability”, in Stuart Sumida; Karen L.M. Martin, editors, Amniote Origins: Completing the Transition to Land[3], Elsevier, →ISBN, page 70:
    The amniote egg is most likely to have arose along the portion of the phylogeny denoted by the solid shading, and is less likely to have arose along the portion denoted by the cross-hatched shading.
  • 2006 February 10, Karl F. Hoffman; Jennifer M. Fitzpatrick, “The Application of DNA Microarrays in the Functional Study of Schisostome/Host Biology”, in W. Evan Secor; Daniel G. Colley, editors, Schistosomiasis, Springer Science & Business Media, →ISBN, page 101:
    The end of the 20th century and the start of the new millennium have bore witness to a remarkable revolution in the way parasite/host biological interactions can be conceptually designed and experimentally studied.
  • 2010, Andrew Noble Koss, World War I and the Remaking of Jewish Vilna[4], Stanford University Press, page x:
    Since this work is about Vilna's Jewish community, I have chose the familiar spelling Vilna, which closely approximates Jews' preferred name for their city.
These are all simple past forms being used as past participles, but that is a limitation of the data I'm working with; there's no reason to think the phenomenon is limited to that.
Additionally, I don't get why people are limiting themselves to the three existing quotes; searching used to been, need(ed) to been, could been, etc. yields plenty of other examples of this construction (mainly in informal use, as you'd expect). For instance:
  • 2018 December 20, Reuters staff, quoting Dwight Howard, “Wizards' Howard says he's pain-free after surgery”, in Reuters[5]:
    I know if I would have been around the team after the surgery, I would have wanted to been out there and play.
Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 06:50, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I agree with Chuck Entz that the present examples are a mixture of typos and at least one probably genuine, or deliberate, use of "to been". I note the omission of "have" in the perfect infinitive as a possible explanation for "to been", as in e.g. "I'd like to been there" (for "I'd like to have been there"); in fact there is a whole chapter of a book about this "have-less past participle" around [6]. However, I'm not sure how likely this is as an explanation of the DARE quote. Mihia (talk) 09:15, 28 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I wouldn't be so sure in identifying it as a past participle; none of the three quotes seem to have the perfect semantics that one would expect from elided "have". Additionally, the OED analyses the DARE quote as containing a infinitive. However, I'm not totally against the past participial analysis; maybe there's a way to somehow incorporate both? Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 06:50, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Depending on the exact wording that the OED uses, which I don't have access to, remember that "to been" would still be an infinitive (a perfect infinitive) even if it meant "to have been". However, I do somewhat agree with you that "one time it use' to have been so cold" doesn't seem quite right -- although since it is not standard English anyway, it is hard to be absolutely certain. Mihia (talk) 08:51, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The context of the OED's mention indicates that they consider it to be a infinitive form, not just part of a infinitival construction:
  • 2013 March 1, “be, v.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required[7], Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press:
    Forms: (The following notation is used to denote the principal form groups: α = am; β = is; γ = sind; δ = sīe; ε = art, ζ = are; η = be; θ = was; ι = were.) 1. Infinitive. a. (i). [] Middle English–1500s (1900s– U.S. regional (southern)) been []
Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 10:36, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I see, thanks. Mihia (talk) 11:00, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Keep, there is little reason to doubt that an infinitive sense is going to be citable and, on a procedural note, attestation is not a matter for RFD anyway. Merging all possible uses into a single nonfinite is a bad idea; if you can attest an imperative, add that definition, if you can attest an irreal form, add that, and if you can attest a habitual, add that. Those marginal nonstandard forms are best kept separate, whether as definitions or subdefinitions. I agree with Mihia that a lot of attestations look like perfect infinitives, though, often with irreal aspect. But I agree with Hazarasp that true typos are not a very plausible explanation either, interference from a more colloquial register and thinkos are. I think errors of the former type should be admitted as evidence, but those of the latter type should not. [8] [9] [10] [11] ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 10:38, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
"how ya wur 'tossicatit whan ya owt to been duing yur larful business" looks like a past tense form, not a present tense infinitive to be; compare "when ya ought to done it during your lawful business". Whether this stems from omitting the "have" from "have been" (and "have done") or just from some dialects allowing the past tense form been to be used bare, it's a past tense form not a present tense to be, in my view. "I would have wanted to been out there and play", spoken(?) by an African American athlete from Georgia and not written in Reuters' editorial voice, looks like the same thing; the similarities between African American English and Southern US English are well known (and the athlete is from the South), and sense 3 needs to be expanded to say "AA(V)E" alongside "Southern US" anyway, since "they been here" is cromulent in varieties of AA(V)E too, along with e.g. "we been knew" (we have known for some time). - -sche (discuss) 17:41, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I'm not even convinced the DARE quote has to be a present infinitive rather than a past tense, but if DARE / other dictionaries do think there's an infinitive here, that supports the idea that ambiguous cites like that represent infinitives. (OTOH, compare the recent TR discussion of high "distant in the past", which other dictionaries have but which may still be wrong.) Btw, I frequently find myself typoing (thinkoing?) verb forms in -ed as -ing and vice versa even though I use the right one in speech, so I wouldn't rule out added letters as typos. - -sche (discuss) 17:54, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I don't think it's a good idea to run around deeming forms that seem odd to us "thinkos". Even if we take your anecdote as evidence that "thinkos" are theoretically possible, there's no solid way to actually determine what' a "thinko" and what's a legitimate dialectal form using the resources we have at hand. Additionally, the concept of a "thinko" is uncomfortably close that of a marginal form; all that's needed to make it one is the actuation of the vocal cords. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 18:25, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Well, strike "thinko" from my comment and it stands regarding typos. (Another typo I make: I've edited wikis and referred to templates for so long that any time I try to type temple it comes out template thanks to muscle memory and I have to go back and remove the extra letters. This is, I admit, much less likely to happen with such a common word as be.) If works consistently use been in infinitive-like ways that'd confirm it as now a typo, and if they only use it once and otherwise use be or have been, it'd suggest the exception is an error (the same principle as when trying to determine if a spelling is a typo, e.g. rare dialectal use of they for the). - -sche (discuss) 21:42, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Typos are not the only possible explanation here; a particular work might only have infinitival been once because it's a marginal form in the writer's idiolect. To distinguish between marginal forms and errors, a close look at the work may be needed; we don't have the time or resources to check every work which has a one-off form. Note that while Shakespeare only uses shotten in "nook-shotten isle of Albion", but nobody claims (as far as I know) that it's some sort of error for shot. IAnyways, I think this discussion is kind of irrelevant, given that there appears to be a solid core of examples in amongst all the ambiguity. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 08:56, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Acknowledging the possibility of typos or idiolect lends support to Chuck Entz's suggestion of RFV re. 2 of the 3 examples. Mihia and I agree, so there's a 3:1 consensus for removing all but the DARE example from the main line of the sense. So, either delete those two other examples (which, if indeed they are dialectal rather than idiolectal, they are still superfluous to the point made evident by the DARE example), or move them to a Further reading section so readers can make up their own minds about the whole hot mess. --Kent Dominic (talk) 11:18, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The two quotes that you and Mihia were discussing have been replaced; check been. If you still aren't happy with the quotes that I've chose, find better ones (as I pointed out, it isn't terribly hard to do so). It isn't superfluous to have more than one quote for a sense so speakers can get an idea of the breadth of a sense's use. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 13:55, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I feel like I've been punk'd: happy to hear the quotes were "replaced" only to see they've been restored, which is old news. No thanks about my doing your homework in finding different quotes. If it's so easy, do it yourself or relocate them as indicated above. As for superfluity, I was being kind. The quotes in question only serve to sabotage your rallying cry. --Kent Dominic (talk) 15:14, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
My mentality is that you're the one who has the problem with the quotes, so it's incumbent on you to find them. I also don't believe the quotes "sabotage my rallying cry" unless you take me as possessing a kind of dogmatism that I don't actually have. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 17:30, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
English infinitival constructions can have past meaning, as in but one time they used to be cold, so checking whether the semantics are past or present isn't a reliable test here. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 18:25, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
It's also worth noting that sense 4 seems to be associated AAVE and the South, just like sense 3 (two of the three examples of sense 4 are AAVE). The other is the English of Northern England, which also has sense 3 constructions, IIRC (though these are somewhat more limited than in AAVE). There's definitely a close relation between senses 3 and 4. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 18:25, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
You've not yet persuaded me that what seems to you as dialectal syntax is anything beyond dialectal prosody as erroneously transcribed and as subsequently misinterpreted from a conclusionary linguistic standpoint. I.e. a speaker intends to say, "I would have wanted to have been;" it gets pronounced as, "I would of wanted to of been" or further abbreviated to "I woulda wanted to a been;" a listener transcribes it as "I would [ø] wanted to [ø] been." Feel free to take the quotes at face value as they were found in the sources. I, on the other hand, don't unquestioningly trust that the speech as reported is a reliable representation of the speech as it was uttered.
Did Dwight Howard in fact say, "I know if I would [have] been around the team after the surgery, I would [have] wanted to['ve] been out there and play" but the reporter simply interpolated his or her own understanding of "have" in the first two instances but didn't catch the phonetic elision in the third instance? I'm quite familiar with Dwight Howard, and I've never once heard him pronounce "have" as an auxiliary verb although he routinely articulates "has." Idiolect? Yes. Is Howard trying to make a linguistic statement of some kind that we should chronicle here? Ha!
I'll say it again: I'm not challenging the validity of the quotes per se: I don't contend they're faked or doctored. Instead, skeptic that I am, I'm challenging the naïve assumption that the quotes accurately represent 100% listening fidelity on the part of the reporter and 0% bias on the reporter's effort to transcribe what he or she (mis)heard. Lastly, I'm highlighting the shortsightedness in applying a specious linguistic analysis that fails to account for prosody, reporting error, and typographical error. I'm also pointing out the simplistic notion that the syntax in the quotes are factually, rather than merely pedantically, relevant to what sense #4 purports. --Kent Dominic (talk) 11:18, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
For reasons that both me and other users have discussed (the lack of perfect semantics, the testimony of reputable sources) I tend to favour interpreting this as a infinitive. Additionally, interpreting this as the elision of have seems to be shoehorning dialects into the mold of standard English rather than analysing them on their own terms; this is the same kind of mentality which led to the Scots "apologetic apostrophe".
However, I'm not dead set against it the "elided have" interpretation (as I've also discussed), but I'd like to solid proof for it rather than what amounts to vague impressionistic handwaving. Even if you interpret this construction as the elision of "have", it still warrants inclusion. It's clearly different in distribution from sense 3 (in that it's quite a bit less common). As for your theory that there was a "reporting error" with Howard's speech, it has no basis other than your anecdotal evidence. I'm not requiring "100% fidelity" or "unquestioning trust"; I just believe that you should have a reasonable level of faith in the evidence rather than questioning everything that doesn't line up with your preconceptions. Something more solid is needed before I can conclude that "what I'm seeing is not what's happening". Additionally, it's not worth getting worked up over one quote; if you're right, another quote can simply be substituted.
As for your claims about typos, they are unevidenced. The belief in typos ultimately comes down to a disbelief that the sources really could say what they do; as I have pointed out, it is unlikely that two whole letters could be postpended to "be" accidentally. The idea of a more cognitive mistake (a "thinko") is certainly possible, but as I have pointed out, it is uncomfortably close to a actual attestation on multiple levels.
Overall, I think it's more than a bit rash to assume that I haven't accounted for differences of analysis, "prosody, reporting error, and typographical error". I have accounted for all these things, but still believe there's a reasonable case to be made here. I'm not asking that you take the quotes at face value; I'm merely requesting that you should be willing to adjust your preconceptions in face of the data.
For anyone who's keeping score, I've raised the possibility of typos without concluding anything one way or the other Chuck Entz suggested RFV, Mihia and I agreed it's a worthwhile avenue. Nothing anyone can say here is dispositive of exactly what syntax the original sources intended or actually uttered. That's the meat of why calling "to been" a dialectal infinitive is not FOREVER wrong; it's simply is a conclusioanary statement about an inconclusive linguistic dynamic. It's unripe as an infinitive, per se, absent the RFV analysis.
Meanwhile, Hazarasp, watch this video clip of Dwight Howard, starting from minute 1:45. (Be especially alert at 2:23, 2:50, and 3:28 for syntax that is idiolectal in a way that is wholly uncharacteristic of the idiolect ascribed to him in one of your sources.) Listen and judge for yourself the linguistic dynamics at work. Turn the volume WAY up or you're likely to miss some nuances that typically don't show up (as they're often homogenized for a generalized readership) upon transcription for publication. --Kent Dominic (talk) 14:59, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I disagree with the implied notion that linguistic judgements must been be absolutely certain to be incorporated in entries. There's several cases where we discuss different possible senses, etymologies, or inflections of a term, and we have fairly fleshed-out reconstruction sections which aren't afraid to get into the weeds of speculation. We even have a dedicated template for terms of uncertain meaning (ᚷᚫᚷᚩᚷᚫ (ȝæȝóȝæ) is a good example). Compared to all of that, the inconclusiveness of been is pretty titchy.
Secondly, your discussion about Howard's idiolect is based on two flawed premisses: Firstly, that it's totally homogenous (idiolects almost never are), and secondly that it's some kind of linchpin for the sense rather than a easily disposable quote that took all of five minutes to find.
Thirdly, it's not like we're going to convince each other at this point. We're also continually moving further away from the discussion's starting point, meaning that the dispute gets less and less relevant to bystanders with each response. In short, I don't think this conversation is particularly productive anymore; I know you like to talk, but talking has its limits. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 17:30, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I'd agree that factoring the degree of idiolectal homogeneity depends on the complexity and precision of one's ability to apply a linguistic algorithm. "S'why I said judge for yourself. A reminder: I RFD'd the sense #4 in its entirety, so the sufficiency of the quotes is topically relevant. Accordingly, Chuck Entz and Mihia suggested RFV of the quotes. I've done some due diligence in that regard. It's turned up nothing beyond what my gut told me at the outset: All but the DARE quote are not clear-cut, prima facie instances of anything dialectal. I want sources that inarguably demonstrate a dialectal pattern, not a compendium of errant syntax that coincidentally fits the pattern. I beg, you please: If you find some cite quoting me to have said, "It had to been (blah, blah)," don't think for one second that I was quoted correctly. Yes, now I can hear you thinking, "If someone misquoted you that way, that's evidence in itself how the reporter used 'been' as an infinitive." Spare me. --Kent Dominic (talk) 21:03, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
To begin with, let me reiterate that this conversation just isn't productive. I know you want to win the argument, but it is unwise to been enslaved to our baser instincts.
There are many linguistic features that can be written off as errors; what's at stake is whether they should be written off as errors. Demanding that we should be totally certain that they aren't errors is unreasonable and ridiculous; if we adopted that standard, we'd have to delete everything in Category:Reconstructed terms by language. I don't see you using any methodology beyond gut feeling ("my gut") to determine what is or isn't a error. Gut feeling isn't sufficient here, as the burden of proof lies on you, because you're the one wanting to make a change. What's especially absurd about what you're doing
Additionally, the reliability of you gut feeling is compromised, as you seem to have worked off of a faulty essentialist attitude that posits a unbridgeable gap between "dialect", which is replete with non-standard forms, and "standard English", which is entirely free of such. This seems to have led you to assume that every instance of infinitive been in texts without other non-standard features must be a error. This is fallacious; occasional non-standard forms can and do appear in otherwise standard works. For instance, note the use of prevocalic a in what is otherwise (mostly) standard English. Are you going to claim that that must be a error? As for the hypothetical you posited, individuals are never fully aware of their own usage. You may well have said it had to been [] or similar at some stage of your life; it would be imprudent to dismiss a record of you having said that based only on your say-so.
I'll wrap up with another random example I found in some crappy poetry. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 06:10, 1 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
My dear friend Hazarasp, I haven't been so bold as to tell you what (not) to presume, but I see you've ignored my request that you not post you presumptions about my motivations. To be clear, my purpose isn't to win an argument; it's to gain comments (and personal insights) on the prospect of deleting sense #4 as you worded it. The comments here are aligned with keeping the foundational premise that been has a dialectal usage in the manner ID'd in the DARE quote. The consensus remains 4:1 to delete the other two quotes in favor of something more tenable. I hadn't noticed until recently that Lingo Bingo Dingo provided a list of substantially better quotes.
Unfortunately, unless I missed it, no other editors have commented here on the labeling issue concerning sense #4. You've subsequently reworded it. It's marginally better than the original, but it still has a linguistic thorn that I'd hoped you'd eventually see on your own. (Our separate discussion on your talk page tells me you're so, so close to seeing what I've intended all along.) I'll come clean on my argumentative style: For a counterpart who wants to win a debate with me, I want nothing less than to see that happen after they come to reason. --Kent Dominic (talk) 08:47, 1 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
With the quotes, you haven't took into account my replacement of them; many users posted before this occurred, so their opinions reflect the old set of quotes. I should've probably gave you a heads-up when I did that. It's also worth noting that I used one of Lingo's quotes as part of the replacement process. Finally, if you find the Howard quote to be objectionable, then it can maybe be replaced with another of Lingo's. (It'd be nice to have a quote from after 2000, though; I don't think any of Lingo's are.)
As for the labelling issue, I reworded the label to compromise with you; the wording was something that you assented to in your earlier discussions. As for the "thorn", I think we have irreconcilable differences there. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 14:45, 1 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
FWIW, Ulrich Miethaner, I Can Look Through Muddy Water: Analyzing Earlier African English in Blues Lyics (2005), page 176, does report that "Additional nonstandard uses of copula be [in African American English] include the absence of -ing from the gerund [...and] the use of been as an infinitive". So, there's evidence (or, a claim) that AA uses could be infinitives (separate from whether we accept the Howard example as one). In fact, if someone could get ahold of that book, they might find the texts Miethaner is citing as containing infinitive been. - -sche (discuss) 21:42, 29 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
While looking for more info about infinitive been, I found an example of the phenomenon discussed above, of errors slipping past even lofty publications: a book about grammar by an English teacher (Mary Hall Leonard's 1907 Grammar and Its Reasons, by a publisher of books for teachers) includes on page 294 the mix-up "With others the use [of a split infinitive] seems to been have confined to certain stereotyped phrases, as, “To far exceed” used by Burke." - -sche (discuss) 03:09, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Keep per my comments above. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 13:55, 30 June 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • What I would say about the three quotations presently given (permalink) is that, to my eye, "to been" clearly means "to have been" in #1, and quite possibly means "to have been" in #3. I think we should try to choose examples where this interpretation doesn't apply. Mihia (talk) 20:01, 1 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Mihia, I'm not as convinced as you are about example #1. I'd say "Yur a boald 'un to tell the missus [blah, blah] whan ya owt to [be] duing yur larful business" is a tenable interpretation, with "to tell" and "to be" in parallel. Still, I wouldn't stake my life on your interpretation or this one. Meanwhile, I'd appreciate your input whether "been is an {{alt form|en|be|nocap=1|pos=infinitive}}" passes definitional muster. I think it's marginally better than the "been is an {{inflection of|en|be||infinitive}}" wording it replaced, but I know there's an alternative - reasonable wording in identical instances of defining dialectal syntax - that's gained boilerplate consensus at Wiktionary. If a certain editor can't find that template, or if he can't reinvent the wheel to satisfy his ego begging to "win" something or other, perhaps you'll assist. If that editor had simply drafted the sense sensibly from day one, I wouldn't have been punked (i.e. by my reading the sense literally and without an inkling that its wording had been botched) into RFD'ing this essentially cut-and-dried concept he's been flailing endeavoring to articulate precisely in sense #4. --Kent Dominic (talk) 23:44, 1 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
It's more than a bit rich having you talk about "my ego begging to win something" given your attitude. My position has stayed fairly constant throughout this whole palaver, while yours has flopped around depending on what you thought could gain support at any given point. All I'd like to do is put a end to this, but you keep stoking the flames.
As for your claim that the wording of been is "botched" and therfore needs to be replaced with "reasonable wording"; you have failed to actually state what you believe is wrong with the current wording, much less put anything forwards to replace it. It's hardly difficult for you to create a mockup entry with what you'd like to happen. As I have stated, I don't care that much about the exact wording as long as it acknowledges the linguistic reality of sense 4. The wording I used was simply a restoration of the old wording of sense 3 rather than something consciously designed. You are the one who is obsessed with "articulating [stuff] precisely" here; don't try and make it so I'm supposed to be responsible for finding the exact wording that satisfies your capricious desires. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 01:04, 2 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Hazarasp, your position in favor of acknowledging the semantic usage of "to been" as been more than fairly constant. It's been 100% rock solid. I commend you for that. Your position concerning the linguistic sense of sense #4 has been a comedy of errors. Consequently, I concede that my arguments have tracked yours, which have been rapidly moving targets on full display here and at the been talk page.
You might be right that I haven't stated what I know to be wrong with the current wording. Perhaps I was mistaken that you'd be able to read between the lines. Let me spell out: It's the same problem as the first iteration; to quote myself from the top of this thread: "Identifying [been] as an infinitive as attempted via sense #4, is at first glance meaningless and frightfully redundant." To expound, "be" is already ID'd as an infinitive, as linked from the been page. Interpolating "infinitive" into sense #4, as I said from the outset, muddies the linguist waters. Readers then wonder, "Is 'been' an infinitive?"
I didn't trick you into asserting how you think "been" qualifies as an alternative infinitive. In your theory of things, it's possible for English to have two infinitive forms relating to "be." Please spare me. No, I didn't trick you, but I admit goading you to take your arguments to their logically farcical conclusion.
FWIW, I'm neither trying to humiliate you nor am I suggesting that no language can have multiple infinitives where one (or both) also function participially. Although been as an infinitive is on solid theoretical ground ripe for discussion at Wikipedia, that dog don't hunt here. Really, if you poll reasonable people about whether "been" is fundamentally a participle (albeit rarely and dialectally used in a syntax that complements a particle normally associated with an infinitive) or whether "been" is an infinitive, I think you can reasonably predict the outcome.
And you're absolutely right that I haven't put anything forward to replace it. I apologize if you said at some previous point that you don't much care about the wording. Your insistence that "been is an infinitive" suggested otherwise.
Why you'd use the old wording of sense #3 (which I myself edited in August of last year for precisely the reason that your sense #4 fails) tells me that you either (a) you didn't think through the linguistic failing of the old sense #3, or (b) you didn't think through the static you'd re-create by resurrecting whatever led to the old sense #3. You said about me, "You are the one who is obsessed with "articulating [stuff] precisely" here. True dat. You continued, "[D]on't try and make it so I'm supposed to be responsible for finding the exact wording that satisfies your capricious desires." Indeed I won't, but I do insist that editors find the exact wording that satisfies their own intent in a way that accords with peer approved lexicology.
Your first kick at the sense #4 can, without quotes, resulted in utter nonsense. It seemed little more than vandalism to me. You posted the quotes in the instant before I reverted the sense for what have been a third time, That's when it became slightly more apparent what you had in mind.
For whatever reason, you seem to equate RFD'ing the sense (i.e. one of the entries for a word in a dictionary) with wanting to disparage the usage of "to been." Dude, get a grip. Indeed I think the original wording, together with the 2 of the 3 original quotes, are candidates for the Linguistic Razzies awards. Slap me for not being a mind reader, but it wasn't until Chuck Entz commented that I had a clear idea of what you had apparently intended with your botched attempt out of the gates.
Hazarasp, I urge you to re-read (or read, as the case may be) my reply to Chuck. The reply establishes the basis of my complaint with sense #4 under any iteration or draft. For the record, the dynamic at work in the "to been" utterance should be chronicled here. Nonetheless, drafting a sense for the dynamic is your brainchild. You do your own work so that the end product suits you, and I'll edit as need be. My suggestion for the sense is stupidly simple: Have a look at the template for beed and substitute "be" for "was/were" in sense #4. Case closed. --Kent Dominic (talk) 10:18, 2 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Your position concerning the linguistic sense of sense #4 has been a comedy of errors. Consequently, I concede that my arguments have tracked yours, which have been rapidly moving targets on full display here and at the been talk page.

While the suggestions I have offered have been far from homogenous, it isn't because I have created "rapidly moving targets". It is because I have remained open to exploring different ideas with regards to what the wording should look like; note that I called them suggestions rather than arguments. Your dogmatism is unnerving to me.

Interpolating "infinitive" into sense #4, as I said from the outset, muddies the linguist waters. Readers then wonder, "Is 'been' an infinitive?"

Perhaps my original wording would've been confusing to those who are uneducated in grammatical terminology. However, users with reasonable linguistic knowledge will be able to infer that been is an alternative to the normal infinitive "been". More importantly, none of the alternative wordings that have been proposed are much better.

I didn't trick you into asserting how you think "been" qualifies as an alternative infinitive.

Good. I never said that you did; that was my position from the start. To believe otherwise is a gross absurdity which is only possible if my arguments are distorted beyond all recognition.'

Your insistence that "been is an infinitive" suggested otherwise

It is perfectly possible to believe that "been is a infinitive" but possess uncertainty about the best way to word that in sense 4.

Really, if you poll reasonable people about whether "been" is fundamentally a participle (albeit rarely and dialectally used in a syntax that complements a particle normally associated with an infinitive) or whether "been" is an infinitive, I think you can reasonably predict the outcome

This argument is fundamentally flawed. To begin with, a good portion of "reasonable people" don't know their infinitives from participles. More importantly, the truth of a proposition is not linked to how many people believe in it. Thirdly, a linguistic form occupy two or more morphological categories without being "fundamentally" any of them. One could argue that the infinitival usage is rather peripheral to the "fundamental" participial usage (a premiss I wouldn't necessarily disagree with), but a hypothetical straw poll is a ridiculous grounds for make such a assertion (one might as well provide no evidence at all).

Why you'd use the old wording of sense #3 (which I myself edited in August of last year for precisely the reason that your sense #4 fails) tells me that you either (a) you didn't think through the linguistic failing of the old sense #3, or (b) you didn't think through the static you'd re-create by resurrecting whatever led to the old sense #3.

My grounds for doing so were that the old wording of sense 3 was inappropriate for sense 3, but were appropriate for a new sense (which became sense 4). Your response implies that whatever criticisms hold for sense 3 must self-evidently hold for sense 4. I reject this.

I do insist that editors find the exact wording that satisfies their own intent in a way that accords with peer approved lexicology.

In my mind, I had did this. You obviously disagreed, but your opinion is no more than a opinion held by one person with no special authority. By the way, I find it telling that you haven't touched upon the most important aspect of wording Wiktionary senses. A sense should be, if possible, easily comprehensible by the (often linguistically ignorant) readership of Wiktionary. This is has been at the forefront of my mind for the many, many senses I have wrote up during my time here. Most controversially, I would aver that it's worth losing a bit of precision if the sense becomes substantially easier to understand.

you seem to equate RFD'ing the sense (i.e. one of the entries for a word in a dictionary) with wanting to disparage the usage of "to been."

Disputations over the usage occupied a good portions of the attentions of the participants in this debate. For instance, wanting to delete two of the three quotes is closer to being a matter of usage than one of sense. Therefore it was only natural that I directed my energies there.

The reply establishes the basis of my complaint with sense #4 under any iteration or draft.

Said reply was unsubstantiated. What is asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence, but I'll do it anyway. If I am reading between the lines correctly here, you seem to have trouble with the idea that been can be the {{inflected form of|en|be||infinitive}} when be is already a infinitive; for you, there is no such thing as a infinitive of a infinitive. However, I would argue that this is looking at things in the wrong way. Crucially, be is not properly a entry for the infinitive in the same way as been is. Instead, it functions as a overarching entry for all inflected forms of be. It only happens to have the form of the infinitive since the infinitive is designated as the headword form for English verbs.
You may have objections to this logic; for instance, it could be argued that it's confusing enough to do readers a disservice. I am not going to mount a spirited defence of it; I myself think it is somewhat obtuse. However, let's compare it to the alternatives you suggested:
  • {{alt form|en|be|pos=infinitive}}: been is (in my opinion) etymologically separate from be, so it cannot be reasonably called a alternative form of be. However, one could argue that they have came to be seen as two forms of the same word. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 14:03, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • {{synonym of|en|be|pos=infinitive}}: been This seems to be your preferred solution. However, it is yet to be demonstrated that the two are close enough semantically to be called "synonyms". Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 14:03, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Kent Dominic: In answer to your question above, unfortunately I am not expert enough to have a useful opinion on whether "been", as an infinitive, should be considered an "alternative form" of the same word "be", or a different word used in the same way. I do note that the verb "be" is itself said to come from Middle English "been", and also the etymology note at be: "Now-dialectal use of been as an infinitive of be is either from Middle English been (to be) or an extension of the past participle." Mihia (talk) 12:16, 2 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Mihia, I trust those who say "be" came from "been" rather than vice versa. That's a salient point for the etymology of both entries, as well as for textbooks. But aren't we talking about a primary sense offered in the context of Modern English, not Middle English and earlier eras? --Kent Dominic (talk) 15:05, 2 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I would say that the labelling or explanation of the Modern English dialect sense probably depends on whether it is a true preservation of usage from an earlier era, or is in fact a reinvention, essentially an erroneous or ignorant use of the past participle (or a shortening of "to have been", e.g. via "toa been", in which cases it is not properly an infinitive anyway, IMO). Again, I am sadly unqualified to judge on this. Mihia (talk) 17:38, 2 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
For once, Kent is right. Your attitude is a instance of the etymological fallacy at work; the only thing that matters is how been is used. Where it comes from is scarcely more important than what font it's printed with in determining how it should be classified. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 14:03, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
For the definition, yes, that just should explain what the word is used to mean. For the explanation/labelling, no. That depends on what I said. Mihia (talk) 14:51, 3 July 2021 (UTC) .... OK, I see I should clarify that when I said "explanation" I did not mean "explanation of what the word is used to mean" but "explanation" in the sense of additional information such as would would be put in a label or note ... Mihia (talk) 14:59, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
... and just to be a bit more explicit about what I mean, if "be" and "been" were originally alternative forms of the base form of the verb, and Modern English dialect "to been" is a continuation of this, then "alternative form of 'be'" seems right to me, whereas if "to been" is a reinvented modern non-standard use of the past participle then IMO it is not appropriate to call it an "alternative form of 'be'", since it is a different word used for the same meaning. Mihia (talk) 18:58, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, just one more thing, in case it has slipped through the net. I don't know whether we are or aren't meaning to cover the usage "to been" = "to have been" anywhere, but just to note that if we are then it cannot live under the definition "been = be", since "to have been" obviously does not mean "to be". Mihia (talk) 19:03, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Kent doesn't seem to have noticed that the etymology note is based on the highly mistaken premiss that sense 3 is infinitival, is since it's a carryover from when sense 3 was described as an infinitive. This means it shouldn't be trusted to be accurate. In fact, I think that Middle English infinitive been and Modern English infinitive been are probably unconnected, given the large gap in attestation between them. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 14:03, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I guess I may as well continue commenting on the usage examples here ... To me, the present usex "I couldn't play yesterday because of my surgery, but I wanted to been out there with my team" seems non-optimal because everything else is ordinary standard English, so "been" tends to just look like a typo. I think it would be better to use an example that incorporates other non-standard dialect usages. Mihia (talk) 15:43, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I agree, but Kent seems to've went a bit ballistic right now (well, more ballistic than he normally is) because I reverted one of his edits (the way he worded things at been is horribly unclear to the uninitiated and against WT convention). I'll wait until the issue is sorted out before replacing the usex. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 17:58, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Re. "ballistic," see the second sentence in Wiktionary Help: Interacting with others as my non-response response. Re. the "because" clause, see the first sentence in Wiktionary Help: Interacting with others. Have a nice day. --Kent Dominic (talk) 18:59, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
It was probably somewhat rash of me to respond in the way I did. However, you should be able to see what drove me to this point; your behaviour towards me has been far from unimpeachable. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 19:33, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Mihia, your point is well taken. I'm totally open to the example's revision or replacement. You've expressed some of the same dissatisfaction I have with the original quote, as attributed to Dwight Howard, "I know if I would have been around the team after the surgery, I would have wanted to been out there and play." The entire quote is uncharacteristic of his idiolect. The first part is too standard and sounds like the reporter's homogenization. Howard routinely omits "have" (but not "has") in present perfects. I'd accept that he'd said, "I know if I['d] would have been around the team after the surgery, I['d] would have wanted to been out there and play." That's how he talks. But that iteration, as well as the original, is problematic for sense #4 as it entails two entirely different syntactical uses of "been": the former as a perfective participle and the latter in a to-infinitive phrase - further obfuscating the point Hazarasp wants to make. I shudder each time I think of a reader indiscriminately applying the #4 sense of "been" to each mention of "been" in the quotes. Suggestions for alternatives? --Kent Dominic (talk) 18:17, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I've went ahead and changed it. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 19:53, 3 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
"They needa been rinched before they git dried." seems like the same sense as "They been here since yesterday.", "they need to have been rinsed". Arguing over where to put ambiguous quotes is messy enough; we don't need to be making up examples of usage and then sorting them under senses they don't clearly use, do we? I also remain sceptical of the Ward citation, but agree there's enough other evidence that (as a separate question from which sense to put Ward under) use of been for infinitive be exists.
I do wonder if there's a clearer way we could describe "They been here" than as just "finite". By our current definition of finite, "limited by person or number", the description doesn't make sense, since it's not limited by person or by number: one can just as well say "I been here", "you ~", "we ~", "she ~", google books:"there was a whole lot of blacks, older men been here since this place opened", etc. Judging by Finite verb, one issue is that our definitions of finite are deficient, but even then, shouldn't we just say in plain language that been in that sense has a (?)perfect progressive meaning? ("We been knew" = we have known [for some time, it's not news].) - -sche (discuss) 18:48, 9 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Here's my thoughts on the issues you raise:
  • The example for sense 3 is supposed to be equivalent to they need to be rinsed, though I could reword it to something more unambiguous I've replaced needa with useta, which should work.
  • I agree that there's room for doubt about the Ward quote; if someone can come up with something better, I don't mind them replacing it.
  • This is hardly my area of expertise, but I believe "remote past" would be the most appropriate label for sense 2; designations of that type certainly appear to be the usual in the literature. Of course, some sense 2 constructions have progressive semantics, but many don't.
Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 20:05, 9 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I guess the fact that "been" does not change in "I/you/we/she been here" does not in itself prevent it from being "finite"; after all, one could say the same about "I/you/we/she went there", and "went" is definitely finite. I guess the question is whether in principle it is a finite verb agreeing with subject, that "would inflect if it did inflect", or whether it remains a participle, with the finite element, i.e. "has"/"have"/"had", omitted and implied. Mihia (talk) 21:30, 9 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Another complicating factor is that English-based pidgins tend to use be or been for grammatical functions not found in modern standard English, and some regional dialects such as AAVE are at least partly descended from such pidgins. You really can't be sure what the grammatical structure is without knowing something about the dialect being used. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:05, 9 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Ah, you're right re remote past! And in the course of adding references for that, I realized that our former usex, "|They been here since yesterday.", is actually a different thing from the remote-past use. "|They been here since yesterday." is (AFAICT) just the plain past-participle use (?) without the have, which doesn't seem like it could be covered under the same sense as remote-past "He been paid for those clothes" (he paid for those clothes in the distant past). Indeed, the two senses could be contrasted, because the simple have-omission sense can produce "He been paid for those clothes" (he has been paid for those clothes, perhaps recently), with a quite different meaning than the remote past sense. So, we may need another sense or a usage note or qualifer or something to explain that dialects can use {{inflection of|en|be||past|part}} without have. - -sche (discuss) 18:00, 13 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
IMO the new presentation of "They been here since yesterday" as a usage of the past participle rather than "finite usage of be" is more sensible. Mihia (talk) 20:51, 13 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I don't think a extra sense or usage note at been would be appropriate, as have can be omitted before any past participle (though omission is more common before frequently used participles, like been and got(ten)). The dialectal use of done, seen, etc. as simple pasts probably partially originates from the reanalysis of perfect constructions where have was omitted. Hazarasp (parlement · werkis) 03:28, 14 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Sense 4 has been long reworded and is in its own etymology section now, so with no further discussion, RFD-resolved AG202 (talk) 01:24, 6 October 2021 (UTC)
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