Talk:tail between one's legs

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adverb - A word that modifies a verb, adjective, other adverbs, or various other types of words, phrases, or clauses.

What does this term modify? It is obviously a NP.

Also, is it the best canonical form for this term? with one's tail between one's legs seems more legit. Moreover that would be our desired adverb

--Dixtosa-wikified me 12:43, 2 October 2012 (UTC)

RFM discussion: October 2012–September 2014[edit]


The following discussion has been moved from Wiktionary:Requests for moves, mergers and splits (permalink).

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Per talk page, isn't with one's tail between one's legs more grammatical? Mglovesfun (talk) 12:46, 2 October 2012 (UTC)

Couldn't you say: "He has his tail between his legs."? --WikiTiki89 (talk) 13:01, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
(ec) The problem is, it can also be used as the object of have or have got: "to have one's tail between one's legs", "he's got his tail between his legs", etc., so with isn't an indispensable part of the idiom. —Angr 13:02, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps one's tail between one's legs? Mglovesfun (talk) 13:04, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
(one's) tail between one's legs is used as a modifer, both between commas and attributively with hyphens. There's also have one's tail between one's legs. Less common are other verbs like tuck, keep, put, and stick. Redirects and usage examples with the varied embodiments of the metaphor seem appropriate, not moving it. DCDuring TALK 13:12, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
[[one's tail between one's legs]] sounds good. Also, the definition is inadequate. --WikiTiki89 (talk) 13:16, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
(ec) Browsing through the b.g.c. hits, I also find "his tail between his legs" used in an absolute construction ("He went home, his tail between his legs, to face his family"), but with other verbs like tuck, keep, put, and stick, as well as in the phrase "his tail was between his legs", I'm only finding it being used literally of a dog, not in the figurative sense applied to a tailless bipedal primate. —Angr 13:25, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Doesn't that mean that "His tail between is between his legs." (or with any other form of to be) also exists? I can't seem to find anything on Google Books though. --WikiTiki89 (talk) 13:26, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Note, I had not seen Angr's edit when I wrote that. --WikiTiki89 (talk) 13:30, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
The entry says the PoS is an Adverb. It is a nominal that can be used in various ways. It might be best to call it a phrase. I have added a redirect from with one's tail between one's legs and an alt form entry at tail-between-one's legs. My feelings won't be hurt if they are deleted because the discussion leads to a resolution incompatible with them. DCDuring TALK 14:16, 2 October 2012 (UTC)