Talk:was

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Although increasing in height and growth in height are correct translations fo the Dutch verb wassen and noun was, I think they are too restrictive. An example: when we speak of a wassende maan, we don't mean that the moon increases in height, but that the illuminated hemisphere of the moon as seen from Earth becomes bigger. Perhaps grow, rise, increase, become higher and/or become bigger would be better translations. D.D. 19:40 Apr 26, 2003 (UTC)

You are right. I should have thought of the expression with the moon. It is only commonly used in relation to water and the moon though, as far as I know.Polyglot 19:50 Apr 26, 2003 (UTC)

Well, there is also the expression uit de kluiten gewassen, and AFAIK it's not wrong (though maybe a bit obsolete) to speak of wassende planten (which, of course, is connected to the noun gewas). I'll let you decide how you want to adapt the article. D.D. 19:59 Apr 26, 2003 (UTC)

Used as slang for "were" in UK[edit]

Circa 2004, the company where I work employed a woman who would gossip on the phone with her friends, and who on learning what they had done would cackle, "Oh, was you?" (i.e. "were you?"). Heard it again in the pub today, something like "when you was at the bar". These people must know that it's ungrammatical, but they use it anyway. So I think perhaps "was" is gaining a slang sense of "(you) were". The register would be similar to "ain't" and the like. Equinox 17:14, 28 October 2011 (UTC)

Yep, I've heard it ("we was wiped"). Mglovesfun (talk) 17:22, 28 October 2011 (UTC)
Now added as "proscribed", with a citation (from lower-class speech) from Arthur Conan Doyle. Equinox 09:11, 4 October 2012 (UTC)
  • A late addendum, but I think this is quite a bit older than the last few years. Author Patrick O'Brian based his Aubrey / Maturin books as much as possible on period sources from the times of the Napoleonic wars, and usage like "was you" shows up in quite a few places. C.f. google books:patrick o'brian "was you". -- Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 19:08, 19 March 2013 (UTC)