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Formatting of quotations and example sentences.[edit]

(Moved from User talk:TAKASUGI Shinji#Formatting of quotations and example sentences.)


This edit had some problems. We format quotations differently from example sentences, because they're very different things. If you'll take a look at the first few senses at parrot#Noun, you'll see how we do it. (Full details of quotation formatting are at Wiktionary:Quotations.)

RuakhTALK 00:20, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Okay, so it's different from French Wiktionary. I'll follow the convention here. However, I don't think the two other sections I added were wrong, specifically the negative imperative and the informal negation of let's. — TAKASUGI Shinji 02:27, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
Re: negative imperative: That's still a contraction of "do not". The point about explicit you is an interesting one (since you can say "Don't you dare!", but not *"Do not you dare!"), but it also applies to questions ("Don't you see?" = "Do you not see?", not *"Do not you see?"), as well as to other contractions in -n't, so it seems like fodder for a usage note, not a separate sense.
Re: informal negation of let's: That's definitely worth mentioning at [[let's]], but I don't see why you consider it a separate sense of [[don't]]. Also, I'm not sure about the labeling of "let's don't" as US and "don't let's" as UK. (I'm not sure it's wrong, but I'd be happier with the claim if we had some evidence for it.)
Maybe we should move this discussion to [[Talk:don't]] or to [[Wiktionary:Tea room]]?
RuakhTALK 18:43, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

(End of the move)

I think the following thesis by Zwicky and Pullum is one of the most important analyses on n't:

Zwicky, Arnold M. & Pullum, Geoffrey K. (1983), "Cliticization vs. Inflection: English n't", Language 59(3): 502-513.

They have shown that don't is not just a contraction of do not but an inflectional form of do for negation. If you can't replace don't with do not, they are separate words. Just saying "Same as do not" is okay, but saying "Contraction of do not" is against the findings by Zwicky and Pullum.

For the US and UK labels for let's don't and don't let's, I have sources only in Japanese and actually I'm not completely sure about the dialectical difference. There's no problem to move them to let's. - TAKASUGI Shinji 08:22, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

I have written the informal negation of let's in let's with two sources in English. The reason why I wrote it in don't is because it replaces not rather than do not.
Let's { not / don't / *do not } talk about it.
TAKASUGI Shinji 03:40, 5 January 2009 (UTC)
Re: contraction vs. "same as": So you're not really arguing for a separate sense of don't — you're not arguing that don't is sometimes a contraction of do not and sometimes something else — but rather, you're arguing that we not define any of the -n't terms as contractions. Right? In that case, maybe we should define don't as do + -n't, and write a good usage note for -n't explaining how it's used. Or, maybe we should just stick with "contraction", which is the standard term, even if it's a bit wrong. :-/
Re: "let's not" → "let's don't": well, google books:"let's do not" gets more hits than you might expect.
RuakhTALK 16:24, 5 January 2009 (UTC)
you're arguing that we not define any of the -n't terms as contractions. Right?
Right. But I'm afraid there would be more cons than pros here. Anyway, I believe it is a consensus among linguists that don't is a single word rather than a contraction of two words.
Re: "let's not" → "let's don't": well, google books:"let's do not" gets more hits than you might expect.
Actually, it is as few as I expect.
google books:"let's do not": 7 hits
google books:"let's don't": 680 hits
google books:"don't let's": 1113 hits
google books:"let's not": 3250 hits
google books:"let us not": 9460 hits
An ordinary Google search gives you 24,800 hits for "let's do not", which is not so few as I expected. — TAKASUGI Shinji 00:40, 6 January 2009 (UTC)
That's weird, your numbers are way less than the numbers I get for those same searches. B.g.c. gives me 212 hits for "let's do not". I wonder if you have some weird restriction set in your Google preferences? —RuakhTALK 01:36, 6 January 2009 (UTC)
I haven't set any preference. It was like a default setting difference. Now I get 213 hits, which is much fewer than others but not so few as to be considered wrong. — TAKASUGI Shinji 02:05, 6 January 2009 (UTC)