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Beer Parlour discussion[edit]

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The following discussion has been moved from the page Wiktionary:Beer_parlour/2012/April#Implied_nouns.

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.

I recently expanded τέταρτος (tétartos, fourth), and I came upon some difficulty in conveying some of the information in proper Wiktionary fashion. In its primary sense, the definition is fairly straightforward, it's the ordinal version of τέσσαρες (téssares, four). However, some of its other senses, while fairly intuitive to understand, are somewhat difficult to rigorously explain. For example, definition 3.2 means quart, as in a liquid measure. That definition is essentially when τέταρτος (tétartos) is attached to μοῖρα (moîra, part, portion). The word μοῖρα (moîra, part, portion) doesn't actually have to be in the clause, or the paragraph, or even the work for that matter. It can be implied by the context, as it is in the Herodotus work cited for it (follow the link, if you don't believe me). I'm almost positive English can do similar things, but I'm at a loss as to think of any examples. My reference (the LSJ 8th edition) uses the syntax "(sub. μοῖρα)" to explain the grammar, with sub. being listed in the list of abbreviations as "subaudi", which is absolute jibberish to me, but I was already aware of the phenomenon, and so understood anyway. My solution is {{grc-sub.}}, which simply makes a {{context}} like parenthetical note "with x". Obviously, this should eventually get an appendix, but I don't have the gumption to write one up on the spot. In any case, does anyone have any thoughts on how to more clearly explicate this in a definition list? -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 02:38, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Perhaps definition 4 of the noun fifth is of use. Can τέταρτος be defined as "quart" and then τέταρτος μοῖρα also defined as "quart"?--BenjaminBarrett12 (talk) 02:57, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
I don't think that's a terribly elegant solution. τέταρτος μοῖρα (tétartos moîra) is really just sum of parts, and should not be given an entry. τέταρτος (tétartos) could reasonably just have a definition "quart" (though I suspect it's not actually equal to a quart), but there's an implied word in there which really should be explicated somehow. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 11:30, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
It sounds like it means "fourth (part); quart, quarter". My question is whether it functions as a noun in such cases? Or is it a "substantive adjective"? Either way it looks like you are explaining it just fine to be honest. Good citations (some with and some without "part") will make the phenomenon fairly clear in any case. Ƿidsiþ 05:40, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
My experience, in Ancient Greek at least, is that nouns and substantive adjectives function identically: they both function as grammatical nouns, take the definite article, can be modified by adjectives, etc. Some adjectives strongly prefer a certain gender, and usually function as substantives, and it can be only determined on scant evidence that they even are adjectives (θεός (theós) is an example that comes to mind). -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 11:30, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
I must admit "subaudi" was incomprehensible to me, too, but after looking through a few dictionaries (both ones that used the word, and ones that defined it), I've tried to put together an entry. I'm not sure how to format the note that it, like "read" in "it was an interesting [read: disastrous] affair", doesn't inflect. - -sche (discuss) 06:50, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
Brilliant -sche! Thank you. If you think it's solid enough to survive an rfv, I'll just put that in (linked, of course) instead. The example sentence in particular is well-crafted. I think that will make the situation much clearer to our readers, while retaining the snooty Latin term which we need to keep our self-respect as a dictionary. :-) -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 11:30, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
I'd never heard it either. If I saw "sub." used as described above, I'd think it meant "substantivized adjective" or something. I've only ever seen "sc." used to mean "to be supplied mentally". —Angr 14:03, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
Wouldn't (elliptically for τέταρτος μοῖρα (moîra)) cover it? — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 23:33, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
Yes, I think it would, but (subaudi μοῖρα (moîra)) is a bit more precise and concise. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 00:21, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I dunno, I would strongly prefer an intelligible clarification (like "elliptically for...") to the one so obscure that we dictionary-editors didn't even know what it meant! - -sche (discuss) 00:29, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
*sigh* Yeah, you're probably right. I guess I got so excited about the possibility of using the original wording that I sort of forgot how remarkably esoteric it is. I've implemented your suggestion, Doremítzwr, at τέταρτος (tétartos). It's a bit longer than I'd prefer, but it really does explain what's happening better than anything else. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 00:45, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I see it's being used now at both τέταρτος and τοξικός, but it raises a more general question about how to treat substantivized adjectives: shouldn't these forms be listed under the genders where they actually occur, and then under a ==Noun== header? After all, what we have here synchronically is a feminine noun τετάρτη that means both "quart" and "the fourth day"; the fact that it's elliptical for τετάρτη μοῖρα is really just part of its etymology. Likewise there's a neuter noun τέταρτον that means "a fourth, a quarter", a feminine noun τοξική that means both "archery" and "a shothole", a masculine noun τοξικός that means "a bowman" (attested only in the plural), and a neuter noun τοξικόν that means "poison for smearing arrows with". I don't think all these noun meanings should be grouped together under the adjective just because that's how Liddell and Scott do it. They're paper and need to save space; we aren't and don't. —Angr 08:22, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I apologize in advance for what I'm sure is going to be a thoroughly unsatisfying response. I really can't support this suspicion, but I don't think that the LSJ put them all together to save space. I think they put them together because they're still, in some meaningful way, still all part of the same word. I feel like separating them to their own entries would be, if not inaccurate per se, an organizational error. I'll try and do some further research and mental stewing and see if I can't give you something beyond idle speculation. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 13:15, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
Even if there are semantic rather than spatial reasons to keep them together, that's not the way Wiktionary works. Unlike any other dictionary, we have separate entries for dog and dogs; for rojo, roja, rojos, and rojas; and for τέταρτος, τετάρτη, and τέταρτον as adjectives quite apart from their substantivized meanings. We are already organized differently from LSJ, so we should make full use of the way we're organized rather than trying to follow the way they're organized. —Angr 13:47, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
We do have separate entries for dogs and dog, and messages and message, but I was quite unhappy that we had some senses at messages that we didn't even point to from message. I'm happy with entries like bang and scissor, and the current revision of message, which I edited so that it does point out the additional definitions at the plural form. (Line similarly has a sense which should technically be the line.) If we move these elliptical senses to specifically gendered inflected forms, we'll need to point them out in usage notes in the lemma entries (like messages), or how will anyone ever find them? Contributors who know none of the language will copy-and-paste the term and get the right page, but contributors who know enough of the language to search for the lemma, aware that our inflected forms almost never contain information beyond "Foo form of bar", won't find the senses. - -sche (discuss) 19:20, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I disagree with the current state of message and messages, since now the meaning "groceries, shopping" is not listed in a definition line anywhere. It's in a usage note at message and hidden on the Citations page at messages. As for the Greek forms, I would actually list the noun meanings under Derived forms of the adjective's lemma. Readers who know enough Ancient Greek to be looking for nouns like τετάρτη will know enough to look for it under its nominative singular τετάρτη (as opposed to one of the other cases, or the plural), but if they only encounter it as a noun they will probably not look for it under the masculine adjective form τέταρτος--you can't tell from looking at τετάρτη that it's "basically" an adjective rather than a noun. In a paper dictionary that's not such a big deal, because if you look up τετάρτη you will immediately see the adjective τέταρτος and will look there instead. But here, if I encounter a noun τετάρτη in my Greek reading and come to Wiktionary and look for it there, and all that page tells me it that it's an inflected form of the adjective τέταρτος, I'll be confused because what I have on my page is a noun ending in -η, not an adjective ending in -ος. —Angr 19:57, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
FWIW, when this sort of this has cropped up for Latin adjectives, I've used (by extension). --EncycloPetey (talk) 18:52, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Adverb, Adjective[edit]

I don't think adverbs have plural forms, and given that the quotation beneath the adjective is "a subaudite third term" (rather than "subaudite third terms"), I'm not convinced the adjective has a plural form, either: I think the adjective and adverb may simply be [[subaudite]]. - -sche (discuss) 23:36, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Sorry; perhaps the explanation is bad. The singulars and plurals mean, respectively, "By or relying upon mental suppletion from — / Mentally supplied by — one person" and "By or relying upon mental suppletion from — / Mentally supplied by — more than one person". — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 00:03, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
In that case, I think it may be best to assume that subaudi#Adverb and subaudite#Adverb are not related to one another by one adverb being an inflected form of the other adverb, but rather that subaudi#Adverb is derived from the singular Latin (or English) verb subaudi#Verb, and that subaudite#Adverb is derived from the plural Latin (or English) verb subaudite#Verb, with "by one person" and "by more than one person" being part of the definitions. They would then be coordinate terms (or, if we accept a qualified use of the Synonyms section, synonyms) of one another. - -sche (discuss) 01:16, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
That's OK with me. — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 01:21, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
Much later, related discussion: Wiktionary:Tea_room/2016/July#albethey, discussing albeit and albethey. - -sche (discuss) 18:10, 31 July 2016 (UTC)