User talk:Widsith/archive6

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Welsh native speaker template[edit]

It's not the language I used growing up, so technically I'm not a native speaker. I'm more 'level 4' which is 'comparable to a native speaker', right? Thanks for informing me though :)

Diolch yn fawr i chi. Thanks a lot :) YngNghymru 17:53, 6 January 2009 (UTC)


Hi again. I come to tap your seemingly bottomless well of linguistic knowledge. Reading a bit of Mallory, I came across this. Sir Launcelot put his shield afore him, and put the stroke away of the one giant, and with his sword he clave his head asunder. Is this yet another past form of cleave do you think?. -- ALGRIF talk 13:31, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Yes that pops up in the KJV as well I think. It's weird, because in OE (see cleofian...oh you can't) the preterite form was cleaf which gave regular ME clef. But apparently what seems to have happened is that the past form became assimilated to the past participle (cloven), making a new form clove. I don't really udnerstand where clave itself came from. The OED says this: "A pa. tense clave occurs in northern writers in 14th c., passed into general use, and was very common down to c 1600; it survives as a Bible archaism." Although Malory was from Warwickshire, so he wasn't really that Northern... Ƿidsiþ 17:22, 15 January 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. I'll add an archaic/obsolete entry at clave. BTW, Warwickshire is north of Watford, isnt it? Lol. -- ALGRIF talk 10:38, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

brang, brung[edit]

An anon has added some etymological information, essentially saying that these are analogous to forms in other English verbs. Is there more to the story? --EncycloPetey 21:45, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Updates to bugger[edit]

I have just added some examples to this entry, taken from a Wikipedia article about the word that is being considered for deletion (see discussion). I do not often add content to Wiktionary, so may well have got the conventions wrong - any help would be appreciated. Also, I would invite you to contribute to the Wikipedia debate. Thanks. Aymatth2 15:28, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Yep, I saw what you did, it was mostly good. I'll try not to get too involved in the 'pedia politics though.... Ƿidsiþ 15:46, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback. It helps to know I am not completely off base. You are probably right to stay out of the Wikipedia debates - sometimes they get very emotional. Wiktionary seems much more logical and objective. Aymatth2 16:43, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Hullo old chap[edit]

I was going to e-mail you, but you don't have that e-mail linky thing. This is too bad for you, because I won't remember what I was going to say tomorrow. Equinox 22:39, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Email should be enabled now. Ƿidsiþ 06:54, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

Feb WOTD[edit]

The February list is up at User:EncycloPetey/WOTD. If you add this page to your watchlist, then I shouldn't ever have to notify you. ;) --EncycloPetey 23:26, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

Question about verification[edit]

Hi, I am new to wiktionary. Thanks for fixing by addition to alienism.

Until now I contributed only to wikipedia. My main question is how the entered dicdefs are verified. in wiktionary. I don't see the tradition of references to sources accepted in wikipedia. I understand that it is done by "wikipeer review". But are there any rules? Also, if I find some definition dubious, what are my actions? Sory to bother you, but I failed to quickly find the answers in wiktionary's "help" and "faq". Mukadderat 19:11, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

  • By and large we avoid the culture of referencing which is necessary at the 'pedia. Citations from "durably-archved sources" (ie books, primarily) are what will convince us of a word's existence. Of course, some definitions are more contentious than others and there is a lot of lively debate here over those. If you are suspicious of an entry, add the template {{rfv}} to the page, which adds it to Wiktionary:Requests for verification. If it is an individual definition, you can use {{rfv-sense}} on the definition line concerned. Ƿidsiþ 14:07, 4 February 2009 (UTC)


Hi there. Thank you for your response. I added ຖົ່ວລຽນ, but without IPA. How do you generate IPA for Lao words? Regards. Tuinui 08:11, 5 February 2009 (UTC).

Plural of Old English hæþen[edit]

Hi Widsith. Does the Old English hæþen have a plural form? The entry says that it’s just an adjective in Old English. I’m very ignorant of Old English grammar, so: Was it used as a noun? Do Old English adjectives agree in number? Either way: What is the plural form of hæþen? Or what would it be, even if it doesn’t have one? Thanks in advance…  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 18:41, 1 March 2009 (UTC)

  • Adjectives in OE could be used substantively, as they can in modern English. ("I am here to help the disaffected....", "I seek a fair wife and a true.." etc etc, in fact this kind of construction was even more common in OE.) It was never a proper noun, and always inflected as an adjective, as though there were an implied subject "the heathen (ones)". I've added a declension template to the page which should help you work out whatever you're currently trying to work out.. Ƿidsiþ 18:57, 1 March 2009 (UTC)
    Thanks, this was for a friend. He says: “Diolch yn fawr, a Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Hapus!” (That’s Welsh for “Thank you very much, and Happy St. David’s Day!”, by the way.)  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 19:20, 1 March 2009 (UTC)


Isn't borgnes also a feminine plural? If so, why isn't it listed on the entry? Just wanted to let you know :). Cheers, Razorflame 21:13, 3 March 2009 (UTC)

Yeah it is, of course – that was just laziness of using accelerated plurals... Ƿidsiþ 21:15, 3 March 2009 (UTC)

Regarding referencing[edit]

Come on, you know that this is the sort of assertion that should be referenced; it shouldn’t be difficult to find an example to support the claim if it is indeed the case. (On Wikipedia, they’d call those weasel words.)  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 02:07, 4 March 2009 (UTC)

I don't know what you mean. The unreferenced tag came after four separate references, all of which do support the claim; I assumed it had been left there by mistake. Or are you talking about a different assertion? Ƿidsiþ 06:58, 4 March 2009 (UTC)
Yes; I refer to the assertion that follows it: “However, some linguists use the term bisyllabic.” Can you suggest a way to make it more explicit which assertion is being challenged?  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 04:28, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
I don't know, I just think this kind of usage note is so clumsy and awkward-looking. Can't we just get rid of it? There aren't any prescriptivist authorities who actually talk about this word, because it's so rare – it's assumed that they wouldn't like it because it's not in any dictionaries. But that point is well enough made by the Dictionary Notes, and the opposing point of view – that some people use it anyway – would be better made by citations. The etymological point is frankly a bit of a red herring, considering words like television or homosexual. Ƿidsiþ 07:05, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
Indeed, all that’s needed as a reference to support the opposing view is citations of the use of bisyllabic in the works of two or more somewhat-notable linguists (then the {{unreferenced}} template can be removed). I don’t really agree that the usage note is “clumsy and awkward-looking” — I reckon that it makes the necessary points clearly and fairly succinctly. I don’t think that the etymological point is a red herring — there are exceptions to it, just like any other prescriptive rule; however, resisting etymological hybrids tend to be more consistently done when it’s a choice between number affixes from different roots (-tuple words always use Latinate prefixes and -gon words always use Grecian ones, for example).  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 20:13, 9 March 2009 (UTC)
Actually, to me, the "weasel words" are the onces which say that prescriptivist "language users" consider it malformed. This seems to me to be a way of implying that language authorites dislike "bisyllabic", but without having to actually find any authorities which say so. Some "language users" may not like it, but "language users", whatever they are, have all sorts of strange ideas, which are not always especially helpful to list in an entry. Ƿidsiþ 16:39, 22 March 2009 (UTC)


I removed the categorization feature of this template, as categorization should (and does) happen in the inflection line templates. A user was creating some proper noun entries, and they kept getting categorized as nouns simply because they had an inflection. Let me know if this is a problem. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 19:47, 19 March 2009 (UTC)


Hi Widsith,

Currently there are two entries in Category:enm:Nonstandard, both by the same editor, many of whose edits were vandalism. Could you take a look? (Is enough even known about Middle English dialects and registers to determine whether a given word was necessarily nonstandard?)

Thanks in advance!

RuakhTALK 03:02, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

  • Er...the category is meaningless. There was no "standard" form of the language in Middle English. Ƿidsiþ 09:42, 21 March 2009 (UTC)


Hi, would you know a solution to this one? It's been in the RFC room, unnoticed, for two months now... --Duncan 14:12, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Perfect. Thanks. --Duncan 17:10, 22 March 2009 (UTC)


Because you voted last time, I'm informing you of Wiktionary:Votes/sy-2009-03/User:Equinox for admin.—msh210 17:59, 23 March 2009 (UTC)

à la pointe‎[edit]

What is the similar term for how a steak should be cooked (pink in the middle) - is it au point? fr.wiktionary does not have that meaning. SemperBlotto 11:38, 25 March 2009 (UTC)

Old English noun templates[edit]

So, since I was the one who removed the categorization feature in {{oe-noun}} (which, incidentally, should really be moved to {{ang-declnoun}} or something), I'd be willing to put {{ang-noun}} into all the entries which became uncategorized by that move. However, I was wondering if you could help me use the template. It appears that there are a bunch of optional parameters, such as genitive, dative, and accusative built into the template. I guess I'm a bit confused by this. Is there a form which is usually put into the inflection line, and if so, why are all the others built into the template? Many thanks. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 20:11, 29 March 2009 (UTC)

  • The short answer is, I don't know. {{ang-noun}} wasn't designed by me but by User:Williamsayers79, and I never use it. The inflection line only needs the nominative singular really, and the gender. But coding in the diacritics is important, which is why I usually tend to do it all manually. Ƿidsiþ 20:39, 29 March 2009 (UTC)
    I see. Well could you show me an example of an entry where you have the inflection line exactly (and I mean perfect) how you want it, and I'll make {{ang-noun}} do just that and start adding it where necessary. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 21:09, 29 March 2009 (UTC)
    • Well, say stān for example. Ƿidsiþ 06:45, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
      Done. The template takes two parameters, g and head, and is now in place at stan. You don't need any sorting feature, do you? -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 07:13, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
      Also, I've gone ahead and added it to all the entries which were categorized by Mutante, reinserting the alt displays with diacritics where applicable. Let me know if you see any problems or need anything else added to the template. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 07:54, 30 March 2009 (UTC)


I'm requesting a check on the term manslot, which appears to be nothing more than a smallholding in mediaeval England, but it might also be a peasant's smallholding. You seem to be the best person to ask about this sort of thing. --Jackofclubs 18:22, 31 March 2009 (UTC)

  • Also, an unresearched etymology would be man's + hold, but I don't take guesses when adding words. --Jackofclubs 18:23, 31 March 2009 (UTC)
Just as well – despite appearences, it seems to be from a Scandinavian language! I've expanded the entry somewhat. Ƿidsiþ 20:47, 31 March 2009 (UTC)


Could you state your sources for this splitting of etymology of hale? Firstly there is no Old Norse noun meaning health, the Old Norse noun means only omen. Then Vigfússon and hale in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913 explain the Old Norse origin of both the English adj. and noun. If this northern English claim stems from OED, meseems that it would be good if we mention both versions, yours and Webster's. But before that would you clarify from which Old Norse word you claim the descendance of hale#Noun? (I am asking only about the noun and adjective, not the verb) The uſer hight Bogorm converſation 09:33, 3 April 2009 (UTC)

  • You're right, I was apparently getting confused; the source for the noun is Old English and not Old Norse. In fact the OED has citations for both going back to the 11th century. They are both northern forms though, so probably were influenced in some way by whatever forms of early Danish were being spoken nearby. However, they are definitely different words (though ultimately from the same proto-Germanic origin). Ƿidsiþ 19:30, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
  • Look, hāl is a very common word in OE. From Genesis, ‘Iosep axode hwæðer hira fæder wære hal’; from Beowulf, ‘Higelace wæs sið Beowulfes snude gecyðed, þæt ðær on worðig wigendra hleo, lindgestealla, lifigende cwom, heaðolaces hal to hofe gongan.’ It developed in two ways in modern English. In the south, the vowel changed as expected and it became whole. In the north – probably influenced by the Old Norse dialects spoken round about – it did not change quite so much, and became hale. There is clear evidence in the citation history at the OED that it has been used continuously in English from the earliest times. The ON was probably an influence on the northern forms, but the word already existed. Ƿidsiþ 20:13, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
    I understand your point. Probably it has something to do with the fact that MW admits a partial origin from OE. But as partial as from Old Norse. The other two sources do not mention OE and Vigfússon is an illustrious scholar in the realm of Germanic languages. The uſer hight Bogorm converſation 21:12, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
    It is also vital to mention that the word was spelt heil (hale in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913), which suggests the opposite version. The uſer hight Bogorm converſation 21:15, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
  • Aha, all right I think I see where the confusion is now. The word which was spelt heil is different. That is the word which we have at hail#Etymology 3, and it does indeed come from Old Norse. But it was never spelled hale. In northern Middle English, there were therefore two ‘doublet’ words of the same meaning. The first can be seen in quotes like ‘Al heil and sund’ (from a 13th-century bestiary), or ‘He es bath hail and fere’ (from the turn of the 14th century) – this was from ON, and was later spelt hail (now obsolete). It was pronounced with a diphthong. Alongside that was the word seen in quotes such as, ‘Godess follc all hal & sund Comm [...] to lande’ (from c. 1200), or ‘It kepez þe lymmes of a man hale’ (from Mandeville) – this was from OE and is now spelt hale. It was pronounced with a long central vowel. Both words meant the same thing and only the second survived (and even that's no longer common).
  • The situation is confused slightly by the fact that the second (OE) form was sometimes also spelt hail. The OED says the following: ‘In Scotch from 15th c., long ā was spelt ay, ai; hence, the later Sc. forms hayl, hail, haill, for earlier hale, OE. hál, must be distinguished from original north Eng. HAIL, in same sense, derived from Norse heill.’ I think that gets to the root of the confusion we have been discussing.
  • In conclusion. ON heill > E hail. OE hal > E whole, hale.
  • I don't know what to say about Webster's except that it seems they got it wrong; it's an old source. If you look in modern works (OED 1993, Shorter OED 2002, Ayto's Dictionary of Word Origins from 1990, Etymology Online), they all give OE as the root of hale. Ƿidsiþ 09:27, 4 April 2009 (UTC)


Could you have a look at that entry, since it seems to be created in discordance with Wiktionary:About Old English, where editors are dissuaded from using diacritical signs in captions. I am not conversant with that language, so I contented myself with apprising you. The uſer hight Bogorm converſation 18:57, 4 April 2009 (UTC)


Would you be willing to check the ety on this when you get a sec. My source seems to imply that the Gothic at least is a natural PIE reflex, and cognate with the Latin, instead of descended from it. Many thanks. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 22:53, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Etymology of flake[edit]

good morning

  • I worked on this word and it seems to me that you can relate it to floccus ( same sense in latin) and flectus( curved)
  • I noticed the folllowing variations :
  • sectus ( cut) =>soccus( cut shoe, English sock)
  • flectus( curved) ==>floccus== >flake
  • fictus( false, moulded)==>fake
  • lectus( chosen, bed)==>?lake, locus( place)
  • rectus( right) ==>rake( right tool to return the earth)
  • coctus( cooked) ==>coquus( cooker) engliish cake
  • tectus( protected, laid) ==>take
  • vectus( transported) ==>wake
  • sanctus( holy) ==>sake( in the expression for heaven's sake)

Does it suit you ? --Mark Mage 23:29, 25 April 2009 (UTC)


You wrote that the proper noun Élysée#French is feminine. Are you sure? Quine writes in Quiddities[1]:

Even the adjective élysée is masculine, as in Champs Elysées[sic]. If it were ever called for in a feminine context, it would be a museum piece; thus vallées élyséees. The explanation of élysée and musée is that the -é- is not participial here, but represents rather a Greek ai.

Of course, he is writing about the adjective, not the proper noun.—msh210 21:53, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

  • It's masculine, of course, like the Latin source. I can only plead a slip of the mind/keyboard.... Ƿidsiþ 09:08, 2 May 2009 (UTC)


Hello, Widsith. Thank you for correcting my entry on глотать, I didn't know about Template:infl, --Joti 10:26, 2 May 2009 (UTC)

About manade/manado/manada[edit]

Hi Widsith Your source is accurate; nonetheless there is some kind of orthography problem. The dominant Occitan orthography in the 19th century was the Mistralian graphy which stuck closer to the local pronunciation. From the 20th century on, the classical or Alibertian orthography (which respects oral variations better, is true to its Latin origins and akin to the Mediaeval spelling) has become the dominant orthography nowadays. So standard Occitan writes manada but pronounces [ma'nado]. Have a nice day/Adieussiatz! Capsot 13:35, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

  • I thought it might have something to do with that....thanks. Ƿidsiþ 13:53, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
    • A thousand (actually a million!) thanks for the Babel sign, I was just trying to figure out how to do it!
  • No worries! Ƿidsiþ 14:15, 5 May 2009 (UTC)


I was under the impression that *gietan was unattested. An anon has changed it. He may be knowledgeable: his contributions don't seem stupid, but I am not the one to judge. DCDuring TALK 21:11, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

  • No, you're right. It's unattested on its own. Ƿidsiþ 08:28, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
    Do the anon's other contributions seem good? Perhaps he should be actively recruited, especially if he has interests in Middle English and other languages ancestral to English, where we still have many redlinked terms. Gentle corrections could be used to attempt the recruiting. DCDuring TALK 11:02, 9 May 2009 (UTC)


Is this really anatomical jargon? What is the usual word for "toe" in French? --EncycloPetey 15:32, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

  • That is the usual word. But I think we have different ideas about how context labels should work. Ƿidsiþ 15:40, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
    Perhaps. My view has been held correct in both past and recent RFDO discussions. --EncycloPetey 20:11, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
  • I don't think it's a matter of correctness, rather convention. A lot of dictionaries do use context labels in this way -- including us, eg elbow. So it's a bit difficult to work out what the idea is. I am actually completely ambivalent in the case of orteil, but where I think they are useful is with words that have a lot of meanings, where context labels are a clearer and in my opinion better way of separating senses than other kinds of bracketed explanatory comments. For instance....I don't know, bouton say. None of the senses are really jargon, but this is surely the most useful way to distinguish between realms of useage. Ƿidsiþ 07:02, 11 May 2009 (UTC)


Was this word borrowed into Galician, Old French, etc., as the entires currently state? Or, was the word inherited from the Latin parent language? --EncycloPetey 14:00, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

  • Yeah, absolutely, they're borrowings (though pretty early ones in many cases). The natural descendants are French dieu, Occitan diéu etc. Ƿidsiþ 14:34, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
    Thanks. --EncycloPetey 02:12, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

Context labels in ELE[edit]

Hi. I've made an abbreviated version of this proposal at Wiktionary:Votes/pl-2009-03/Context labels in ELE v2. Please have a look. Michael Z. 2009-05-17 18:07 z


Hi. Atelaes thinks combining forms of Ancient Greek like -φαγία should not have independent entries, instead the full form should be used. See this discussion, for example. Do you disagree? --Vahagn Petrosyan 17:48, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

  • I am ambivalent over whether or not they need entries, I'll defer to Atelaes on that, but I do think they should appear in etymology sections if necessary. Otherwise it makes little would phagein become English phagy? Ƿidsiþ 07:22, 22 May 2009 (UTC)


Hi, thanks. I've believed the latin lemmata write (for example) culō, but they write culo. Ok. Best regards --Ivocamp96 14:10, 23 May 2009 (UTC)

Context/Usage and labelling[edit]

Rather than burden the vote further, I am posting a quick note here. In adding Galician terms, I came across a good example of where a context label must be used strictly to inform of restictions on usage, and cannot be used to indicate general sense of meaning. See perna (leg) (Galician section). Note that this same distinction occurs in Galician brazo and in English "arm" and "leg", where the colloquial sense is quite different from the sense used by the anatomist. --EncycloPetey 02:06, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

  • Yes, that is a good example of that situation. Ƿidsiþ 13:27, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Mandinka sort order.[edit]

Hi Widsith,

I asked you this at my talk-page, but I'm not sure if you noticed. Do you happen to know the right sort order for the Mandinka alphabet? The U.S. Peace Corps dictionary linked from here seems to use this sort order:

a b c e f h i j k l m n ñ [ŋ/o] p r s t u ü w y

with ŋ and o sharing a sort position, but that just seems so unlikely. (Not to mention incomplete.)

RuakhTALK 19:15, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

  • I think the order is:
a b c d e f (g) h i j k l m ñ ŋ o p r s t u w (x) y
I'm not sure where you got the u-umlaut from...I can't see it in the doc you link to. G and X are not really part of the Mandinka alphabet but they turn up sometimes in loanwords. Ƿidsiþ 19:23, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
  • O.K., thanks for the info. That works pretty well, then; we just need to replace n with nn, ñ with , and ŋ with . (Replacing n with nn will probably be easy to forget, but I don't think there's a better way, unfortunately.) I'll add a note to {{mnk-noun}}.
    The u-umlaut I got from headwords such as tutüriŋ, but I notice now that the corresponding example sentences lack the umlaut, so it's probably a weird encoding issue or something. (I notice that copying and pasting from the main part of the dictionary is totally b0rked, which makes me suspect they used dirty font hacks that may have backfired a bit.)
    RuakhTALK 19:46, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
  • Oh wait, I forgot the n. There's a normal n as well, between m and ñ! Ƿidsiþ 22:46, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
  • O.K., I'm an idiot. I've thought about it further, and we don't actually need to replace n with nn; if we leave n be, but replace ñ with , and ŋ with , it should all work out O.K. (as long as we're consistent about it). I'll fix the ones I've already done … —RuakhTALK 12:57, 2 June 2009 (UTC)


Well, the problem is, "liqueur" in modern literary use =/= the same as English modern uses of "liquor". I think it's safe to say that if we give this translation, it's most likely the reader will read "liquor" in its modern use, and even if they go look, how are they to know that we mean specifically the obsolete use?

Although theoretically foreign language entries are a language-to-french billingual dictionary, in practice, they act as a foreign language dictionary with entries in English (I refuse to give one word definition that do not accurately carries the nuances of meaning). As such, we cannot just mix and match the levels of languages we use in defining these entries (which is in a fact a longstanding principle of billingual lexicography and translation: use the same level of language). Circeus 13:22, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

  • Well, perhaps you're right. I wasn't trying to mix and match -- my instinct is that liquor can still be used in elevated forms of writing to mean "drinkable liquid", but on the other hand I haven't seen Fr. liqueur used enough to have a strong sense of what the equivalent should be. Ƿidsiþ 13:31, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

marshmallow - pronunciation[edit]

Hi. Could you, please take a look at the entry mentioned in the headline if the British pronunciation you added is correct because I cannot pronounce the stress on the second syllable and American puts it on the first one. However it might be just because of me as I ain't native. I forethank you - as we say in Hungarian. Ferike333 16:35, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

Answered. --Duncan 17:42, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
It seems to be just me ;) Sorry for bothering you. Ferike333 18:09, 2 June 2009 (UTC)