User talk:Msh210/Archive/literally

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This page is an archive of old discussion. Please don't edit this page. If you wish to communicate with me (msh210), you can do so at User talk:Msh210. Thanks!

Your new {{&lit}}[edit]

Hello msh210 -- I'm not entirely comfortable with this new template and the manner in which you have been inserting it in entries:

1. The usual practice is to place contextual information in italicized parentheses. You are deviating from that by adding "Used literally:" to the text of the definition itself.

2. You are replacing some literal senses which have explanatory value with "See (one or more entries)". I believe this reduces the convenience to the user, especially in cases where you refer the user to multiple terms. I think we should avoid the use of "See" in the definition of a sense.

Respectfully -- WikiPedant 21:04, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

1. That a phrase is used literally is part of its definition, not its context. Context tags as I understand them are for where or in what field it's used (regional tags or topical tags) or in what register it's used (usage tags), and are also (oddly, but whatever) used to supply grammatical info (grammar tags). "Idiomatic" and "literal" (and "neologism", by the way) are none of these. If every idiomatic phrase entry that can also be used literally has a simple &lit line as its last sense ("also used literally"), then we'll never need to use the "idiomatic" tag.
2. I think the only times I replaced a literal sense with "See [list]" were when the literal sense did not cover all bases. A good example of this is get to, where the definition read "(literal) To reach" and I changed it to "Used other than as an idiom: see get,‎ to.", because there are lots of other literal meanings.​—msh210 15:41, 11 February 2010 (UTC)
After reading the next section, I see that all wet is another good example of why I replaced definitions with "See [list]". Please see my comments further there.​—msh210 15:46, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

all wet[edit]

Hello msh210 -- You removed the explanation of the literal sense of "all wet" (drenched, thoroughly wet) and added this quotation:

  • 1994 March, Mark Jenkins, "Tent Etiquette", in Backpacker, page 40 [1]:
    Hang all wet clothes on the clothesline.

I think the quotation is inappropriate. In "all wet" (even the literal sense), "all" functions as an intensifier of "wet" and means "thoroughly". In the above quotation, "all" modifies "wet clothes" and means "the totality of". Different sense entirely. I think the unsuitability of the quotation would have been clearer if you hadn't wiped the textual definition of the literal sense.

Respectfully -- WikiPedant 21:10, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

I'm not following. You say that "[i]n 'all wet' (even the literal sense), 'all' functions as an intensifier of 'wet' and means 'thoroughly'". Doesn't the Jenkins quotation show that that's not always the case? It was partially on the basis of the Jenkins quotation that I wiped the "drenched" definition: because there are multiple literal meanings of "all wet". See also my comments in the preceding section on this page.​—msh210 15:46, 11 February 2010 (UTC)
I agree that the Jenkins quotation does not fit because in this context, "all wet" does not mean anything by itself until "clothes" is appended. "Clothes," "wet clothes," and "all wet clothes" can all be used alone, but not "wet clothes." In the quotation, "all wet" does not modify "clothes," rather, "all" is a noun determiner that modifies "wet clothes." Therefore, "all wet" cannot be taken as a unique term in the sentence. Taken literally, it just means "completely wet." ~ heyzeuss 23:45, 3 April 2010 (UTC)
But we do have non-constituents as entries.​—msh210 15:14, 14 April 2010 (UTC)