What about: We have to cure the sick.
Isn't sick a noun there? If it is a noun, is it a plural then? Polyglot 10:04, 2 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Good suggestion! I'm not sure how such nouns are classified in English. There are similar nouns based on adjectives and used collectively and uncountable rather than singular or plural. "The rich" and "the poor" are other examples which spring to mind. I know these are a special case in Spanish which take the rare neuter article, "lo" as in "lo pobre" etc.
Should this be "Collective noun" or is that term reserved for things such as "a murder of crows"?
Hippietrail 10:40, 2 Feb 2004 (UTC)
- It's called (by some grammarians) an "adjectival noun": an adjective used as a noun. Basically, "the xyzzy" is used as a kind of shorthand for "the ones who are xyzzy". Since this can be done with just about any adjective (the elderly, the poor, the artistically inclined, etc.), I don't think it should be considered a noun. The offline dictionaries I've seen don't, as a general rule.
- N.b. There's another thing called an "adjectival noun" by other grammarians, just to keep things confusing: a noun used as an adjective, as "disk" in "disk drive", or "gift" in "gift horse". But that's another topic. -- Ortonmc 16:24, 2 Feb 2004 (UTC)
- We have to cure the sick uses a substantive, which means it is still an adjective but the word it describes (people) is implied. Other examples include the meek shall inherit the earth, the righteous shall suffer, etc. 126.96.36.199 03:47, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Excellent Dude, that was Sick!
I've heard sick used by skateboarders, surfers and snowboarders extensively, but only in the US. Rather than calling it a British/Australian term, should it be listed in the sporting contexts it started in (it is now a common term.) --Connel MacKenzie 03:08, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)
- I remember seeing this in an ad for a snowboarding event in early 2004 and it was the first time I ever saw the word used that way. I remember it said "GET SICK!" at the bottom of the flyer. The wider sense of "sick = good" seems to have gone mainstream between then and now, but I've still never heard it used a verb (or verbal complement). Soap (talk) 00:32, 11 December 2013 (UTC)
- I saw it this year on a British Twitter feed for one of the university societies. They said that a certain event was going to be a "sick night". (Something like a sick day? Heh.) Equinox ◑ 14:06, 11 December 2013 (UTC)
The sick-the disruptive or the evil
Though it seems unPC to give this definition, the word needs to be defined properly. You can't just define 'the sick' as 'the sick' as it seems to be doing now.
verb or adjective?
The sense used in "When I heard what she ate for lunch, I felt like I was gonna be sick!" is rather ambiguous. I would suggest it be a verb, as, "...I was gonna be vomiting" but am adding this as an adjective ... Can anyone verify if it is an adjective or verb (or noun)? In any case, this wasn't directly contained in any of the senses given. Sense 4 "having the urge to vomit" did come close however.
- That's a verb. SemperBlotto 08:33, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
I'm also changing the examples: "My car is looking pretty sick." and "My job prospects are pretty sick." to the slang sense "awesome". As far as my English goes, they imply positivity in these contexts. -- 188.8.131.52 05:39, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
- I don't think so. SemperBlotto 08:33, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
- I think be sick could be considered a single unit where the be and the sick aren't separable. I'd strongly favor an entry for it unless there's some evidence I haven't thought of. Mglovesfun (talk) 14:20, 11 December 2013 (UTC)