Wiktionary:Tea room

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Tea house party in Japan (not tea ceremony)-J. M. W. Silver.jpg

A place to ask for help on finding quotations, etymologies, or other information about particular words. The Tea room is named to accompany the Beer parlour.

For questions about the technical operation of Wiktionary use the Beer parlour. For questions about specific content, you're in the right place.

Tea room archives edit

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Oldest tagged RFTs


January 2018


Can someone explain to me how this is the English plural of "artist"? Does any other dict have it? Equinox 10:23, 1 January 2018 (UTC)

This is not an alternative plural of artist. It’s a plural of the more technical and historical artista. I have to admit that I was a bit prescriptive and wishful when I submitted that. Here are some cites. — (((Romanophile))) (contributions) 20:27, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
No. Citations, not cites.
Thanks. We do still need an English entry for artista if you wanna do the honours. Equinox 02:33, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
Strangely I couldn’t find many examples of ‘artista’ in the citations that I gave. That doesn’t rule out my guess but it makes me far less certain. — (((Romanophile))) (contributions) 10:07, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
I can find citations for an artista, but I'm not getting enough with a single meaning. DCDuring (talk) 19:40, 1 February 2018 (UTC)


We have several words that are in categories under Category:Bahuvrihi compounds by language. But we don't seem to have a definition for this word. SemperBlotto (talk) 12:31, 1 January 2018 (UTC)

@SemperBlotto: Yeah, we do; but bahuvrihi is written lower-case. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 12:32, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
A quick Google Books search suggests the uppercase is also attested somewhat commonly, so I've added it as an alt case form entry. — Mnemosientje (t · c) 17:29, 21 January 2018 (UTC)


A 19th century balance scale

It would be fascinating to have some reference to how on Earth the periot was weighed, in practice. Depending a bit on which country's grain you start with, 1/9600 of it is around an eighth of the Planck mass; a 1 periot drop of water has diameter less than a quarter mm. Reasonable readers might doubt the practicality of measuring such a small mass (of gemstone) with any semblance of accuracy, using equipment available to 18th century jewellers (IIUC, that's roughly where this unit dates from). The blanc, a 24th part of a periot, even more so. Eddy, 13:38, 1 January 2018 (UTC)

  • See Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Arithmetic on WikipediaWikipedia , Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Lever on WikipediaWikipedia , Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Weighing_scale#Mechanical_balances on WikipediaWikipedia , and image. I assume that some of the techniques involved trial-and-error, lever arms, weighing multiple "periots", and using groups of weights, between which the difference was equal to the expected weight (eg. a 50 periot weight and 20 and 25 periot weights would allow measurement of 5 periots on an unlevered balance and 1 periot on a 5:1 levered balance. DCDuring (talk) 14:40, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
I am familiar with beam balances and the tricks one can do with them. However, we're dealing with under 7 microgrammes here; I cannot help but wonder how precisely anyone ever measured a periot using such balances (much less the blanc, at about two sevenths of a microgramme). Doing so in a cold room, for example (as just one potential confounding effect), would involve a hazard of error due to condensation on the metal of the scales; it would be easy to fail to notice a thin layer, along a beam's length, whose mass could be significant relative to that of a quarter-mm droplet of water. During swapping of the masses between pans, to check a weighing, such condensation might well flow along the beam, confounding precision. I guess my curiosity is more about the practicalities of how 18th century jewellers dealt with such absurdly tiny masses. One might also wonder whether anyone could actually see a gem so small. Eddy, 21:19, 1 January 2018 (UTC)


Should we have an entry for this word, which is apparently only found in broad-winged hawk? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 16:10, 1 January 2018 (UTC)

Presumably not, because a dictionary lists lexical items, not phrases. "Broad-winged" means "having broad wings", just "short-legged", "high-nosed", "lumpy-elbowed" and so on mean the obvious things. Imaginatorium (talk) 05:15, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
@Imaginatorium: You're probably right. We do have entries for short-legged and high-nosed, though. The latter has the justification of being idiomatic, but the former apparently isn't.
@DCDuring, should we pass some rule about this? I know from Talk:big-dicked that you weren't too keen on including them all, and I think a fair many words in CAT:English parasynthetic adjectives don't really have idiomatic senses. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 18:44, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
I'd like to think that common sense, unaided by an explicit rule, would exclude bat-winged, swept-winged, and broad-winged and big-dicked, limp-dicked, large-dicked, and small-dicked. DCDuring (talk) 20:09, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
  • On the other hand, I think we should have it, and I consider it a single word. It's useful to know when it was first used, and whether it typically describes specific animals. It's in the OED. It also probably qualifies under COALMINE rules. Ƿidsiþ 17:37, 16 January 2018 (UTC)


I am a bit dubious sometimes where a term is described as being from Ancient Greek when ἀφασία (aphasía) may be a coining in Modern Greek. DonnanZ (talk) 20:08, 1 January 2018 (UTC)

Well, you can stop being dubious, because the word is genuine Ancient Greek (which I found out by looking it up in Liddell and Scott's dictionary online, just as you could have). —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 20:18, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
There was an Ancient Greek word aphasia but the word entered English in its medical sense through French ([1]), around 1865. DTLHS (talk) 20:23, 1 January 2018 (UTC)
I didn't know of Liddell & Scott anyway, not being a Greek scholar. I think I'll just use the latter part of the etymology. DonnanZ (talk) 20:33, 1 January 2018 (UTC)


Could a Japanese-language editor take a look at the Japanese translation here? It seems wrong. In Chinese at least 十字軍 refers to the forces themselves, not the military campaign. Thanks. ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:53, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

I believe the meaning is exactly the same in Japanese as in Chinese. The problem is that there is no "word" for "Crusade", other than saying "an expedition by the crusaders" (十字軍の遠征); the word for "crusader [army]" is more basic. I don't know what is supposed to happen here; removing the translation is not helpful, but adding a Japanese entry for a phrase is also dubious. (Fundamentally, there is a problem with this "translations" notion: it assumes that all languages have the same division into semantic units, and this is not true.) Imaginatorium (talk) 05:10, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Not really. We add sum-of-parts translations all the time, we just make sure the units are linked individually, as opposed to pointing to one (red-link) entry. If the Japanese is the same as the Chinese, then 十字軍 would apppear to be a mistranslation. A "crusade" is not an army. ---> Tooironic (talk) 10:25, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
If a trans is SOP, link like this: "Japanese: {{t|ja|[[十字軍]][[の]][[遠征]]|tr=じゅうじぐんのえんせい, jūjigun no ensei}}", resulting in this: "Japanese: 十字軍遠征 (じゅうじぐんのえんせい, jūjigun no ensei)". - 18:53, 3 January 2018 (UTC)


Etymology at evenly is not right. A separate etymology needs to be made to fit an adjective sense (if it's attested) from OE efenlīċ. Also look at the PGmc source *ebnalīkaz that shows Eng. evenly as a descendant. Anglish4699 (talk) 03:16, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

I've fixed the etymology to show OE efenlīċe. Anglish4699 (talk) 03:29, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

Swedish döma[edit]

Could someone please check my attempt to fix the usage notes? --Espoo (talk) 07:13, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

I think it's OK, it really needs looking at by a Swedish speaker. It's similar to Norwegian Nynorsk døma and Norwegian Bokmål dømme, but a double m is used in the latter case. DonnanZ (talk) 11:08, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Just made a minor adjustment, otherwise some mighty good changes @Espoo. --Robbie SWE (talk) 18:41, 2 January 2018 (UTC)


This can be an adjective right? ---> Tooironic (talk) 08:17, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

It shouldn't be, but it can be used attributively, such as yuppie flu. DonnanZ (talk) 09:56, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Well "hippie" can act as an adjective, so I don't see why not. "That place is so yuppie." etc. ---> Tooironic (talk) 10:23, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
I know that would make it meet our test for adjectivity, but so many nouns can, in context, be used that way and demonstratively are, at least on the Web. Do we want to memorialize all such durably attested usage? I am not sure that there is a way to objectively distinguish the usages I find lexically adjectival from those I do not. If there isn't than our existing tests of adjectivity must prevail. DCDuring (talk) 14:44, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

life's a bitch[edit]

A red link I found at c'est la vie. An idiom? DonnanZ (talk) 11:32, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

Such a common term, but some of us don't think it inclusion-worthy (except possibly as a usage example for the right definition at [[bitch]], ie "Something unforgiving and unpleasant", possibly reworded). Isn't that a bitch? DCDuring (talk) 14:47, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
I wonder who entered life's a bitch and then you die? I found more red links at life and bitch and decided to do something about it. DonnanZ (talk) 20:03, 5 January 2018 (UTC)

busyness and busy-ness[edit]

Is there a reason we distinguish these? And I'm not sure I agree with the "without achieving much" part of the definition at busy-ness. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 18:30, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

I found a little evidence for the "without achieving much" part in the first few pages of Goole Book Search results:
"The work culture in many organizations emphasize being busy as in busy-ness rather than effectiveness."
"BUSY-NESS. If you're not careful, you can spend all day spinning your wheels and have little time left over to actually get anything worthwhile achieved."
"Before we know it, we are stressed, aged, "busy-ness" junkies who fill even our vacations with meaningless tasks."
Of course, this isn't any evidence that "busyness" is not use the same way. Mihia (talk) 20:48, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
The definition should probably be modified to say "without necessarily achieving much." Andrew Sheedy (talk) 22:35, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
You're probably right; or maybe there should be two definitions, one for the "useful" busy-ness and one for the futile sort. Mihia (talk)


At go there is the following usage note:

  • The verb to go has two different present participles (like many other English verbs), e.g., going and goand. The form goand is now obsolete outside a few (rural) dialects where it is considered archaic.

I don't believe that the first sentence is particularly helpfully worded, but I'm not sure how best to fix it. Is it saying that many English verbs have an archaic or dialect participle form -and, e.g. seeand for seeing, or doand for doing, etc.? When it says "e.g.", which seems rather vague and confusing, does it mean that there are alterative spellings/forms of goand? Mihia (talk) 20:37, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

Is goand attestable in either Middle or Modern English? If it is attestable in Modern English, it could be on the inflection line with some qualifier. If in ME, then that is where it belongs. If neither, we can delete the usage note. DCDuring (talk) 21:42, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
The reference in the entry for goand is to Scots goande. We are usually pretty specific as to spelling (except in Middle English) and treat Scots as a separate language. DCDuring (talk) 21:48, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Maybe e.g. and i.e. were confused and it was meant to mean "There are two participles, namely going and goand"?
I wasn't able to find the cite in goand with google books. The Scots reference however has "Ane thristie manne … goande by ane tauerne; Q. Kennedy Oratioune 18.". google doesn't have it either but "goande by ane taverne" (by Quintine Kennedy but in a book with works of John Knox (?)) can be found. I'd assume that someone changed the Scots quote to make it more English or "normalized" it in some way... - 01:38, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
Note was added by User:Mountebank1 [2], who habitually adds some rather strange bits of dialect. Equinox 03:41, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
What I meant to say was that whilst the suffix -and was productive, that is from God knows how long ago until the early 17th century, every English verb, in the Northern dialects at least, had the present participle which ended in -and and/or -ing. However, -and was completely replaced by -ing at the end of the Middle English period in the Southern dialects, and there aren't enough written works in the Midlands dialects to be able to tell when the suffix -and fell out of usage over there. I heard people use this suffix only when they were reading literary works or when they were trying to sound "archaic". Mountebank1 (talk) 16:58, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
Here's what I meant to sayː
  • The verb to go has two different present participles (like many other English verbs). One of them is goand and the other one is going. Goand is now obsolete, except for a few rural dialects where it is considered archaic, nota bene, these days, it is almost never used in common speech. Mountebank1 (talk) 17:40, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mountebank1: but doesn't that usage note properly belong at -and, rather than at go ? Leasnam (talk) 22:20, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
Honestly, I don't know where it belongs... Mountebank1 (talk) 22:25, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
If I may be critical again about the new wording above, the information that "the form goand is now obsolete ..." is not sufficient in my opinion to make clear that all the alternative present participles are obsolete or dialect, and that for 99.99% of all practical applications there is actually only one present participle for each verb. Also, "e.g." is still wrong. It doesn't logically work within the structure of that sentence as it is written. Mihia (talk) 22:57, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mihi, Mihia: Thoo art full richt, it ne wurkes non. Joost ne wurkes... Mountebank1 (talk) 00:40, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
I ne knowe hu tae wird it anie bettir than this. Mountebank1 (talk) 00:55, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
And by the way, I do not think that there is anyone out there who might find it reasonable to use the word goand instead of going, especially since "goand" was never used to form the continuous present or the continuous past... But like I said, I do not think that I can reword it any better than this, so if any of you feel like you can do a better job, then go ahead. Take a whack at it. Mountebank1 (talk) 01:13, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

This is my suggestion:

  • Like other English verbs, the verb go once had an alternative present participle formed with the suffix -and, i.e. goand. Goand is now obsolete, having been replaced by going, except in a few rural dialects in Scotland and Northern England, where it is considered archaic. Even in such dialects it is never used to form the continuous tenses. These examples are from ### which dialect? ###:
    Goand snell athwart the houf, hoo hent 'im be the swyr. (Going swiftly across the churchyard, she grabbed him by the neck.)
    Goand oot of the holt, she saw a woundor baist. (Going out of the woods, she saw a magical creature.)

The current text says "Northern dialects", which I think may be confusing to readers around the world. I have assumed it means northern Britain. It would be good to mention the particular dialect that the example sentences come from. Mihia (talk) 19:56, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

  • Highland dialects. The suffix -and is almost never used outside the Highlands. I don't know about Orkney, though. And if I had to guess, I would say that it survived there, to this day, via the oral tradition (which is now all but dead). So, I am not even sure that anyone uses it in the Highlands any more, most certianly not the young people. And I haven't been to Scotland myself for a very long time... although I still sometimes hear the suffix -and used in my dreams (if that helps anything). Mountebank1 (talk) 20:30, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
    • And by the way, goand is not really an alternative form of going, because goand and going had kind of different roles, so I don't think it is all that correct to call it an alternative form. Goand was used to form dangling participles (at least on some occasions) and going was used to form the continuous tenses. The suffix -and was used to impart a sense of archaism. It basically served as a stylistic device. Mountebank1 (talk) 20:44, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
      So, you are saying that goand is not something that is currently being used to communicate what is communicated by going, but someone might run across it. That is, there is no particularly good reason for the entry for go to prominently support encoding into goand, though there is a reason to have an entry for goand for decoding. That is, goand does not belong on the inflection line at go#Verb though there might be reason to include it as a related (derived?) term. DCDuring (talk) 22:51, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
I wonder too whether there is anything special or different about the use of goand, in terms of either historical development or present usage, compared to the use of the -and suffix generally. If the suffix is used (or not used) in the same way with numerous verbs, then, if we include this information at go, should we not also logically include it for numerous other verbs, and would that be making too much of it? Perhaps, as suggested above, the detail should be explained only at -and. Mihia (talk) 22:59, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
You can still run across words like goand at events like this, or maybe at school or at churches that use the Scottish bible.
When I was attending Catholic school in the Highlands we often read old Scottish poems from the 15th and 16th centuries in which the suffix -and figured prominently. I also occasionally heard very old people (80 to 85 years old) use the suffix -and for the sense of archaism that it provided. And that was in the late 70s. And when I was in my late teens (in the early 80s) I spent some time with a traveling preacher who sometimes used the suffix -and when he was reading the bible (this suffix appears in the Scots bible). Mountebank1 (talk) 03:07, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mihia, Mihia: Historically, -and was occasionally used to form the continuous tenses, but that sort of usage was very rare. It was mostly used to form dangling participles and adjectives. For exampleː
  • And when Jesus came into the house of the prince, and saw mistrals and the people makand noise, He said: Go ye away; for the damsel is not dead, but sleeps. And they scorned him. And when the folk was put out, He went in, and held her hand, and said: Rise, damsel; (and) the damsel rose.
  • Fyftie thousand fightand men; a burnand brand; a falland star, a criand child, a falland case (an incident) etc.
  • Cupid, with his fairy dart,
  • did pierce him so out through the heart,
  • So all that night he did but morned;
  • Sometime sat up, and sometime turned.
  • Sighand and with many (a) gant and groan,
  • To fair Venus makand his moan:
  • Sayand, Lady, what may this mean?
  • I was a free man late yestreen:
  • And now a captive bound and thrall
  • For one that I think flower of all

By the way, here's an example for seeand from Murdock Nisbet's translation of the New Testamentː "And the Pharoe, seeand that, had called him, said within himself, sayand: If this were a prophet, he should wit who and what manner (of) woman it were that touches him; for she is a sinful woman." Mountebank1 (talk) 03:25, 5 January 2018 (UTC)

I'm sorry, but I still don't understand whether there is something special about go that means we should explain the usage detail at go and not explain it at many other verbs, or whether we should (in theory) explain it at numerous verbs, or whether it should just be explained at -and. Mihia (talk) 01:17, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
I think that we should just create entries for the present participles formed with -and. Mountebank1 (talk) 05:26, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
And no, there is nothing special about go. I think that most of this stuff should be included at -and. Mountebank1 (talk) 05:58, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
  • A question in my mind is: "Where should goand appear on the go page?". Goand and go are obviously to be linked. The link from goand to go is obvious. The definition line contains a link to go
    Inflection line gives it too much prominence.
    Usage notes isn't appropriate because there is nothing to distinguish go from many other Germanic English verbs in his regard.
    Derived terms is not where we put inflections.
    Related terms is not really for inflections either.
    See also seems like an evasion.
    The Conjugation box seems like a good place, but only in this case, not for the general case of -and participles.
    Thus I return to the inflection line for the general case. Perhaps a show-hide bar to make it clear that the hidden contert is of less-than-primary importance. It is a shame that the bar takes up so much space. DCDuring (talk) 15:41, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
    Goand should go in the same place on the page [[go]] where other archaic forms like goest and goeth go: not there at all. Links don't always have to be reciprocal, and this is good example of a time when they shouldn't be. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 16:32, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
    I don't know, maybe we shouldn't even put goand in the entry for go. Mountebank1 (talk) 23:47, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
I see no need for it to be there Leasnam (talk) 15:04, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I tend to agree. I suggest that it could be listed as an alternative form, labelled "obsolete or dialect", at going. Any usage detail not already explained at -and could be moved there, and the examples moved to goand. I will do this in due course provided there are no objections (and I remember!). Mihia (talk) 18:46, 13 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Shouldn't be there. Where would it end? The OED lists the following attested forms for the present participle: “OE gande, OE gende (in prefixed forms), OE (in prefixed forms)–ME gonde, eME goinde (south.), eME goude (transmission error), ME gaand (north.), ME gaande (north.), ME goand, ME goande, ME goende, ME gond, ME goond, ME goonde, ME guoinde (south-east.), ME 16 gooying, ME–15 gooinge, ME–15 gooyng, ME–15 gooynge, ME–15 goyinge, ME–15 goynge, ME–16 goinge, ME–16 gooing, ME–16 goying, ME–16 goyng, ME– going, 15 gohyng, 15–16 goeing, 15–16 goeinge, 18– goan (regional), 18– goin (regional and nonstandard), 18– goin' (regional and nonstandard); Eng. regional 17– gaain (north. and Lincs.), 18 gaain' (north.), 18 gaen (Cumberland), 18 ga'n (Lancs.), 18 gawin (north.), 18 gawin' (north.), 18 gawn (north.), 18 geayn (Northumberland), 18 goain' (Yorks.), 18 gooan (Lancs.), 18– gaan (north.), 18– gaeing (north.), 18– gahin' (north.), 18– gain, 18– gan (north.), 18– gaun (north.), 18– geann (Cumberland), 18– gewing (Essex), 18– gi'en (north.), 18– gine (Yorks.), 18– gooin, 18– gooin', 18– goon (Essex), 18– guaying (Worcs.), 18– gying (Yorks.), 18– gyne (Cumberland), 19– gahn (Westmorland), 19– gaing (north.), 19– gooen, 19– gyen (Northumberland); U.S. regional 18 go'n', 19– ghy, 19– gine, 19– go (in African-American usage), 19– go' (in African-American usage), 19– goan, 19– go'n, 19– gon, 19– gone, 19– gorn, 19– goun', 19– guh (in African-American usage); Sc. pre-17 goande, pre-17 17– going, 17– gaun, 17– gawn, 18 gain, 18 gyaan (north-east.), 18 gyain (north-east.), 18 jyaain (north-east.), 18– gaain, 18– gaein, 18– gaen, 18– gain', 18– gyaun (north-east.), 19– dyan (north-east.), 19– dyaun (north-east.), 19– gaan, 19– gaean, 19– gae'an, 19– gaein', 19– gaing, 19– gan, 19– gan', 19– gauin, 19– gawin, 19– gien (south.), 19– gjaain (Shetland), 19– gone, 19– gyaain (Shetland), 19– gyaan (Orkney), 19– gyaen (north-east.), 19– gyan (north-east.); also Irish English (chiefly north.) 18 goan, 18– gan', 19– gaein, 19– gan, 19– gaun, 19– gawn, 19– goin; see also gwine v.” Ƿidsiþ 17:41, 16 January 2018 (UTC)


This Scots entry shows English Ulster Scots as a synonym, not a translation. Translingual entries often have a similar problem with English related and derived terms and synonyms. Don't we have to follow the logic of our separation of every languages from English and Translingual? DCDuring (talk) 00:59, 3 January 2018 (UTC)

I don't know what Scots is or how it should be attested. I have created a separate English entry however. DTLHS (talk) 01:12, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Scots on Wikipedia.Wikipedia (language code: sco) is considered a separate language. Is Ullans attestable in English? DCDuring (talk) 01:18, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
Among OneLook references only Wiktionary and WP have entries for Ullans. Nor does Century 1911. Ie, none of the English-language dictionaries have the term, at least until you added the English L2. OED? DCDuring (talk) 01:23, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
Neither OED[3] nor DSL[4] have it; attestable through Google Books though[5]. --Droigheann (talk) 14:06, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
From what I've gleaned, Ullans isn't really a Scots word at all, having been made up recently by an Ulster language society to differentiate what is spoken in Ulster from Lallans. Though Lallans seems to be both English and Scots, Ullans seems to be just English, at least by our standard of attestation. DCDuring (talk) 19:15, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
I know that it has a Wikipedia article. I should have said, I don't know what it is on Wiktionary. And yes it's easily attestable as English. DTLHS (talk) 01:29, 3 January 2018 (UTC)


Is it really proper to mark this entry as "nonstandard"? Why not just "rare"? Tharthan (talk) 12:26, 3 January 2018 (UTC)

If I used highfather in a school English paper about religion or patriarchs, I doubt it would be marked "wrong", so it doesn't seem to be the same kind of non-standard that quicklier or boughten are Leasnam (talk) 01:33, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
I note that 2 of 4 citations are for "high father" with a space, which seems rather different. (A "grand father" is a father who is grand; a "black bird" is any bird that is black.) Okay, there are cases like "high priest"/"highpriest" but I am suspicious of this Wiktionary narrative that unusual Anglo-Saxonesque forms are of equal ranking with the equivalent Adj+Noun phrases; the latter are quite possibly of independent modern formation. Equinox 03:19, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
So how do we determine whether this is a legitimate "Anglish" term à la those coined by Michael of Northgate, Barnes and Hollander, or just a latter-day affectation? Because I am sick of seeing the latter around. As much as I love using Germanic terms over post-Old English Latinisms when I have the choice, we ought not to be peddling around false terms. Tharthan (talk) 04:43, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
Dan Michel of Northgate is irrelevant to this discussion since he wrote in Middle English, not modern. As for Barnes and Hollander, their terms are no more or less "legitimate" than anyone else's; "Anglish" is always just an affectation. CFI still applies: if a term is used at least 3 times in durably archived sources, by multiple authors over the span of more than 1 year, we include it. Otherwise we don't. Back to the original point, however, I agree that {{lb|en|rare}} rather than {{lb|en|nonstandard}} is probably the correct label here. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 13:41, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
Were inkhorn terms not affectations in their own time? I fail to see how (at least a mild form of) "Anglish" is any worse. If one more or less sticks to already coined terms and terms coined by authors fairly published, what is wrong with that? But anyway, if no one objects, I'll change the label. Tharthan (talk) 15:26, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
I don't think that highfather really qualifies as an "Anglish" term anyway, not any more than the words I, you, me, the, meaning, follow, house are "Anglish"...highfather is a word that's always been in our language, just like those others just mentioned. It's just "English". To me, a purely "Anglish" term is like waterstuff or uncleftish...Leasnam (talk) 16:50, 4 January 2018 (UTC)


Hello, I recently noticed that the entry for 「会する」 has broken conjugation, the kana and rōmaji sections are fine, but the kanji versions erroneously repeat the 「する」 part for every form. I tried fixing it, but I cannot correct it. --AstroVulpes (talk) 13:52, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

I wonder if I'm seeing something different to you. I see nothing obviously amiss. Could you quote exactly what you see for one specific entry that you think is wrong? Mihia (talk) 23:06, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
@AstroVulpes, Mihia: Fixed. This is a topic for WT:GP, not the Tea room :). This is how -suru verbs are now handled. I missed when it was agreed that the verbs is in this group stopped displaying "suru" in the transliteration, though. It doesn't make sense to display "会する" in the headword but show only "かい" and "kai" without the "する/suru" part. IMO, it should be "かいする, kai suru", as it always has been! I noticed it some time ago but never raised it. @Erikr, TAKASUGI Shinji, Wyang: was there a discussion about it? --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 23:35, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
Well, if the conjugation of する is not included, then surely there is no conjugation at all, and no point in having a conjugation table? Wouldn't every entry simply read 会/かい/kai? Perhaps I am missing the point somehow. Mihia (talk) 00:19, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mihia: I meant that "する" is not included in the headword but it is in the conjugation table, which is working as expected. Yes, I think you're missing the point. The suru part is the only one that gets conjugated: shi, sure, shiyō. You can have a look at the conjugation table at する (suru). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:30, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, I know that the suru part is the only one that gets conjugated. That is why I don't understand how it ever could have been suggested that it should be omitted. But, if it's all working correctly then I won't worry about it any more! Mihia (talk) 00:48, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
OK. Fixing the stuffed ping: @Eirikr.Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:54, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
Now I see 会するする… The same problem as in User talk:Haplology#Fun with Template:ja-suru. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 02:18, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Eirikr, TAKASUGI Shinji, Wyang: I can see it too now! What happened? --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 02:22, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
Oh, I've got it... suru verbs are supposed to be at the entry name without suru: , not 会する. — Eru·tuon 02:26, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
Ah no in this case. There must be an entry for 会する because is not a noun but a kanji. See User talk:Eirikr/Archive 2011-2012#鼻汗. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 03:05, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
Fixed by changing the headword template. Modelled on  (あい)する (aisuru, to love), which also has an entry title with する. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:08, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Atitarev: Actually, I modified Module:ja-headword, and {{ja-suru}} should work fine now. — Eru·tuon 05:12, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Erutuon:: OK, thanks. As long as verbs with or without する in the title work, I'm happy with your solution. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:17, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Atitarev: I did test a verb without する too, and it looked fine. — Eru·tuon 05:40, 5 January 2018 (UTC)
@Erutuon: A certain set of single-kanji terms + する are analyzed as inseparable. For instance, 愛する (aisuru) conjugates differently from what one would expect for (ai) + する (suru): the negative form is 愛さない (aisanai), not *しない (*ai shinai). There is also a potential form, 愛せる (aiseru), which for a separable verb would instead be *できる (*ai dekiru). I am not familiar with the 会する (kaisuru) verb itself, but my references list this as following the same inseparable-verb pattern. HTH, ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 07:59, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
@Eirikr: Are you certain that the negative of 愛する is 愛さない? Would that not be the negative of 愛す? Mihia (talk) 01:49, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
Hmm, didn't get the ping...
@Mihia: It appears you're correct, and also that this verb is a bit irregular. I had learned somewhere along the way that the negative should always be 愛さない, but it appears that 愛しない is also valid. Digging deeper now, the term 愛する is classed as a サ行変格活用 (sa-gyou henkaku katsuyō, "S"-row irregular conjugation), with considerable overlap between the expected patterns for -する and -す. See more at the Japanese WP article on サ行変格活用, with a specific section for the verb 愛する.
@Shinji, can you supply any native-speaker wisdom on this one? ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 19:55, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
愛する, as well as 会する, has a new conjugation pattern. Traditionally it is explained by the two verbs 愛する and 愛す, but it is difficult to imagin a speaker switching two verbs according to tense and mood. It is rather reasonable to think the two conjugations have been merged:
愛する 愛す Merged
Nonpast 愛する  ?愛す 愛する
Past 愛した 愛した 愛した
Negative  ?愛しない 愛さない 愛さない
Conditional 愛すれば 愛せば 愛せば
Imperative *愛しろ
愛せ 愛せ
Volitional  ?愛しよう 愛そう 愛そう
Potential *愛せられる 愛せる 愛せる
My intuition is that there is only one verb. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 01:09, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
That's interesting. I also found this discussion. Mihia (talk) 18:44, 11 January 2018 (UTC)

Etymology of Hungarian halaszt[edit]

What does the etymology of halaszt mean? There is no reference to the hal- part. Would someone expand it or otherwise make it make sense?

Ok. Crom daba (talk) 14:26, 6 January 2018 (UTC)


I'm not sure where to post this. Scrit uses the English header, but is probably Middle English; the last quotation in the OED is from 1450. — Eru·tuon 00:04, 6 January 2018 (UTC)

scrit in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911 calls it Middle English. Our documentation makes 1500 the division point between Middle and Modern English. There is a case for the division to be somewhat earlier, marked by the later works printed by William Caxton (d. 1491). I'd go with Middle English. DCDuring (talk) 00:54, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
I've visualized Caxton setting up his press in England and upon the first stamp a wave passing through England where the power of the printed word changed the language mid-discussion from Middle English to Modern English. But "the later works"? That's hopelessly fussy for a line drawn in a continuum. 1500 is a nice round number as good as any.--Prosfilaes (talk) 06:21, 6 January 2018 (UTC)


Can we rename this (not sure to what)? The current title is not only inappropriately slangy for a thesaurus headword, it is also rare, not found in Google Books at all. Equinox 14:07, 6 January 2018 (UTC)

That is the most common term for it though Leasnam (talk) 22:23, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
How do you know?! Equinox 23:28, 6 January 2018 (UTC)
Everyone I know refers to it as such. I hear it all the time. It may not be encountered much in print, but that's the term people use for it in speech. Show anyone a pic of a man's bulgy crotch area and ask them what this is, and they'll say "manbulge" lol Leasnam (talk) 00:01, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
(I wonder what you talk about all day.) If you asked me I'd scratch my head and say "um, 'package' I guess." —Tamfang (talk) 02:02, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I'm not gonna go and ask random people what they think about a picture of a man's bulging crotch because I will be arrested and put on a list. But yeah unfortunately I don't know any better name for this. I am slightly biased because the creator was (I am pretty sure) "Pass a Method", who had a brief flurry of trying to edit all penis/trousers articles to get his word into it. I don't like us supporting this by apathetic default. Equinox 02:23, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
Does a thesaurus title have to be a word, or could it be a gloss? DTLHS (talk) 02:24, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
All those thesaurus titles which are SoP are not words in that sense, so yes, the title can be a gloss. Else it would mean that compounds are allowed while words with a prepositional phrase or a relative sentence aren’t. Palaestrator verborum sis loquier 🗣 03:16, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I think I would prefer a silly "Thesaurus:man's bulging crotch" over the current one, because, while I have nothing at all against slang, slang is colourful and carries implications. Thesaurus headwords should be neutral, even if that means we get a little biological about the dick in the pants. We have Thesaurus:drunk, not Thesaurus:pissed. Equinox 03:20, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
Since when is manbulge slangy ? I don't see it as slang. It's a crude concept, but the word is spot on. "Man's bulging crotch" is okay too, but unnecessary (too verbose and very British-sounding). Maybe manbulge sounds too North American ? Otherwise, it sounds just fine IMO. I mean, we do have cameltoe as well don't we ? [[6]] Leasnam (talk) 03:44, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I dunno, seems pretty slangy to me... Andrew Sheedy (talk) 04:22, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
Thesaurus:cameltoe was also created by a "Pass a Method" sock as one of his mad campaigns (you only see about 10% of what he did, because the huge amount of egregious shit was deleted by hard-working admins, not just me); and I would equally prefer a non-childish term to group those thesaurus items. Equinox 04:25, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
From my experience, I would guess that at least half of all English entries deleted through rfv in the past few years can be traced to Pass a Method, the Sky UK Japanese/Magic vandal (though Japanese got the brunt of it) and the Greek Pseudo-Intellectual IP. WF, Fête and Luciferwildcat/Gtroy did a lot of damage in years past, but they've been almost quiet in recent years (WF, please take that as a compliment, not a challenge...). Chuck Entz (talk) 04:46, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
"Is X slang?" is probably arguable, but my personal benchmark (for slang, colloquial or informal) tends to be "if I were writing an academic paper that had to be submitted to a journal, could I use this word without quote marks or italics?". Manbulge is a no-no. Equinox 04:26, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
FWIW I agree with Equinox; "manbulge" seems slangy; something like "male crotch bulge" would seem more appropriate. Like Tamfang I would normally use "package", but that word is polysemous and also seems slangy, although it seems more appropriate than "manbulge" by seeming less explicit. - -sche (discuss) 17:43, 12 January 2018 (UTC)


Does this character have a Chinese meaning "program"? Dokurrat (talk) 17:47, 6 January 2018 (UTC)


The current definition of 男色 doesn't seem quite right. In the quotation, 男色 looks to be the object of 親, so I'm not sure if it could mean "homosexual sex". @Wyang, Dokurrat, Tooironic, any ideas on the definition? — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 21:01, 6 January 2018 (UTC)

Why not? 親 (roughly, "to be familiar with") + 男色 ("male homosexual sex"). ---> Tooironic (talk) 01:35, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I don't know what the rfdef sense is supposed to represent... There are two senses for this IMO: "(1) masculine charms; man's beauty; (2) lust for man; sexual intercourse with a man (or men)". Compare 女色. Wyang (talk) 15:08, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
@Wyang: I think Dokurrat added a rfdef because the current definition doesn't match what's in Hanyu Da Cidian. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 02:21, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

does size matter?[edit]

Should we add a sense to girth? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:51, 7 January 2018 (UTC)

It depends what that sense is? DTLHS (talk) 17:58, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
Penis circumference. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 20:13, 7 January 2018 (UTC)

drive letter[edit]

User:Zcreator just made this, but it's completely incomprehensible. —Rua (mew) 20:11, 7 January 2018 (UTC)

It's the wording used by the Wikipedia article linked from that page.... I added a context label (which I see you just fixed for me, thanks) and a link to volume, which clarifies it. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 20:19, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
The "PC" wording is a bit strange. Certainly Windows mobile has drive letters too, while Linux on a PC does not. It's OS dependent, not hardware-dependent. —Rua (mew) 20:59, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I know very little about this sort of thing, but I would tend to agree. SemperBlotto made that edit, though. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 21:46, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
I changed it to MS-DOS or Windows. There's other operating systems, according to Wikipedia; OS/2 is obvious, I think we can avoid mentioning all the MS-DOS/Windows clones, and there's a few archaic systems.--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:18, 7 January 2018 (UTC)
IMO should delete as SoP. It's like "part number". Equinox 15:53, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

despite that + subordinate clause?[edit]

Is this

  • a) in use and correct;
  • b) in use but proscribed; ("despite the fact that")
  • c) not in use?

I'm hoping for b): it'd be an accurate translation of malgré que. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 01:16, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

You can't say "despite that." You can say "despite the fact that," but it's not proscribed as far as I'm aware. I can't think of anything that perfectly fits what you want. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 03:34, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Have you considered although? Although it's not quite as strong in expressing the opposition between the main and subordinate clauses, it might fit your need. DCDuring (talk) 04:27, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
@Andrew Sheedy: Do you mean it's not used at all? Or that it's used, but prescriptively incorrect? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:10, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
@DCDuring: although is okay, but it won't capture the fact that malgré que is a proscribed construction. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:10, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Are you looking for an English expression that is proscribed in a way that parallels the way a French expression is proscribed? This seems like a fool's errand to me. DCDuring (talk) 17:13, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, and I agree that it's a fool's errand! --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:21, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I thought that despite that was fine. I've used it before. But my speech is probably weird. — Eru·tuon 21:59, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Despite that is probably US English. There are many instances of this ("I hate that you said that" for "I hate the fact that you said that"). In British English, you have to have "the fact that" in there. Younger people are aping US usage, however.
@Erutuon: Ahah, it's this message of yours that prompted my question! --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:01, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
In the message that you cite, as I read it, there is a missing comma after that. I think that is an anaphoric reference to a prior sentence. DCDuring (talk) 22:12, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I disagree: the meaning, as I see it, is: "Although I'm an Ancient Greek enthusiast [and I'd prefer using the first person singular], if a form has to be chosen, I'd support the third person.". I'd say that your analysis is true for most of the occurrences of "despite that" we can find in Wiktionary, though: [7] --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:16, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
We have the opportunity to ask the author. DCDuring (talk) 22:26, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
You're probably right. DCDuring (talk) 22:27, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Yep, @Per utramque cavernam is right. I meant [despite [that I'm ...]], not [despite that] [I'm ...]. — Eru·tuon 22:33, 8 January 2018 (UTC)


The page shows a Cantonese pronunciation. Is this word used in Cantonese? @Justinrleung, Suzukaze-c, Wyang. Dokurrat (talk) 01:57, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

And 哩哩囉囉 / 哩哩羅羅, which also make me wonder. Dokurrat (talk) 02:00, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I don't know about the first one, but the second one seems vaguely familiar to me as li1 li1 lo1 lo1 (I could be wrong). —suzukaze (tc) 03:43, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Cantonese does have li1 li1 laa1 laa1, but it has a Cantonese-specific meaning: careless. There is also li4 li4 laa4 laa4, meaning "swiftly". Not sure about li1 li1 lo4 lo4. Wyang (talk) 09:37, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
li1 li1 lo4 lo4 doesn't sound colloquial to me; I'd go with li1 li1 lo1 lo1, but I'm not sure if it's actually used in Cantonese. For 哩哩啦啦, apart from li1 li1 laa1 laa1 and li4 li4 laa4 laa4, I've also heard of li4 li1 laa4 laa4 for the second sense. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 05:56, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

all's Contraction of all as[edit]

Yet all as does not have an entry of its own. Some reference(s) of its use would be clarifying --Backinstadiums (talk) 09:46, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

Well, in the entry all's the two words are linked separately: it's a contraction of [[all]] [[as]], with as being sense 9: "(now England, US, regional) Functioning as a relative conjunction; that". —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 12:04, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

antonym of free of charge[edit]

Do we have an entry that can serve or already serves as a translation hub? I'd like to add payant and платный (platnyj) to it. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:39, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

When you find one, you can add kostenpflichtig to it too. I notice that both kostenpflichtig and пла́тный (plátnyj)}} are glossed as "chargeable", but chargeable itself doesn't seem to have the exact meaning "not free of charge". —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 14:44, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
The SoP expression for + sale is the most natural way for me to say it. As is often the case I can't find the appropriate definition of for which MWOnline has as its first "1 a —used as a function word to indicate purpose. a grant for studying medicine. DCDuring (talk) 16:41, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Our closest definition is: "In order to obtain or acquire." That wording doesn't work too well for for sale or They put the baby up for adoption or The tree stump was suitable for sitting.. DCDuring (talk) 16:53, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I can't speak to the French or Russian terms, but German kostenpflichtig isn't quite "for sale" either. It basically means "that must be paid for". A sign warning car owners that their vehicles may be towed away at owner's expense might say that the cars will be kostenpflichtig abgeschleppt. When you buy something online in Germany, the last button you click to finalize the purchase is required by German law to say "kostenpflichtig bestellen", i.e. "order while recognizing that you are committing yourself to pay". —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 17:08, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I can't speak for Russian either, but I agree with Angr: I wouldn't translate payant by for sale either (that would be à vendre). When you ask "Is it for sale?", the answer you expect is either "Yes, it's for sale" or "No, it's not for sale", not really "No, it's free". --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:15, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I would expect a possible response to be No, take one. or No, it's a floor model/demo.. This comes up with things like free (advertiser-paid) newspapers or better-quality sales brochures near a cash register. For free, a near-antonym of for sale, is close to synonymous with free of charge, at no charge. DCDuring (talk) 19:38, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mahagaja, DCDuring: What about paid (as in paid service)? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:51, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
I think of paid as having to do with past payments, not future ones, though context could make it work as you want it to. But we don't want our definitions, usage notes, etc to depend much on context for correct understanding. DCDuring (talk) 22:04, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
There are contexts where paid could work, but not all of them. I think we simply have to accept that English has no obvious adjective that means "subject to payment". —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 22:19, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

+ Greek πληρωτέος (plirotéos) --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 19:18, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

There's always nonfree. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:23, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
I've put the translations there. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 12:11, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Consider paid, e.g. a paid service. ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:53, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
  • The normal way to say it in English is not with an adjective but a clause; "It costs something", "You have to pay for it", or similar. Ƿidsiþ 17:43, 16 January 2018 (UTC)


Redirected to -year-old, and I'm not sure whether I'm reopening a can of worms by suggesting that this (in the case of a person) is a synonym of centenarian, and a note won't do any harm. DonnanZ (talk) 15:06, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

  • I would like us to have entries for ALL n-year-olds, both as adjectives and as nouns. Even if only as translation targets (for e.g. Italian). SemperBlotto (talk) 16:45, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Nothing odd with having SoP terms as synonyms of idiomatic terms. Just do something like {{syn|en|[[hundred]][[-year-old]]}}. Crom daba (talk) 17:30, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Can you use that instead of {{synonym of|centenarian}}? A redirect to -year-old would still be needed though for other senses.
@SemperBlotto: I generally agree with you, however in addition ninety-year-old is a synonym of nonagenarian, eighty-year-old of octagenarian, seventy-year-old of septuagenarian (my new age group). DonnanZ (talk) 18:16, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

-ous pronunciation[edit]

Should the pronunciation(s) of -ous be added? --Backinstadiums (talk) 17:47, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

Sure, why not? I've added it. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 19:11, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mahagaja: thanx. What about the alternative forms? I am not sure I know them for 100% of cases --Backinstadiums (talk) 21:38, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
The pronunciation of -ious depends on what it follows, since it tends to turn t and s into /ʃ/. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 22:17, 8 January 2018 (UTC)


Montenegrin now has an ISO 639 code of its own, cnr. However, since we treat it as a regional variety of Serbo-Croatian, I don't think there's anything we need to do about it besides this, is there? Terms are added to CAT:Montenegrin Serbo-Croatian by means of {{lb|sh|Montenegro}}, which doesn't use a code. Is there anything I'm forgetting, where our ad-hoc code zls-mon is being used? —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 19:15, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

No results for insource:zls-mon, so it's not being used. —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 22:05, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mahagaja: I think we can probably trace or add automatically Serbo-Croatian words with letters С́, с́, З́, з́ to CAT:Montenegrin Serbo-Croatian. They are not used in other varieties. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:28, 9 January 2018 (UTC)


What does the first cite mean? And shouldn't we split this in (at least) two senses (cf. incorruptible)? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:44, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

In the first cite corruptible means ‘perishable, subject to decay’, and the sense of the whole cite is roughly ‘You weren’t redeemed by means of things like silver and gold, which are not eternal.’ I’d split the senses. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 23:38, 8 January 2018 (UTC)
Done. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:23, 9 January 2018 (UTC)


Is heapmeal possibly an inherited or borrowing of a Mid. English *hepmele, from OE hēapmǣlum? I couldn't find a descendant on B&T or Middle English Dictionary. They seem so close! I just don't know... Anglish4699 (talk) 02:27, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

We really don't see it reemerge until the early 20th century, which suggests (at least to me) that renewed interest in Old English reading was responsible, or at best renewed vigour in creating Old English-sounding words was in minor fashion. The only other mention before then is in a 19th Century dictionary where it is listed as obsolete. Personally, I would say it was created anew, and mention the OE hēapmǣlum for comparison, unless you find more evidence that writers were consciously trying to evoke the OE word, in which case stating borrowed may be used Leasnam (talk) 20:27, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
IF anyone has access to OED, it would be nice to know if there are any earlier/interim uses of heapmeal Leasnam (talk) 20:36, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
The OED1 is mostly public domain and can be found on the Internet Archive. It offers OE cites using hēapmǣlum or hēap-mǣlum, and then offers "1610 HOLLAND Camden's Brit. 1. 17 And thereon powre the same forth by heap-meale." (OED1, Volume 5, page 155.)--Prosfilaes (talk) 06:29, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
Excellent ! Thanks Leasnam (talk) 17:09, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
That leaves a gap from 1000 to 1610. It's iffy. It may be a stretch, but considering how little Middle English is attested (being that the official written language in England at the time was Old French and Latin), it's quite possible that it survived through to re-emerge in EME. I've altered the Etymology some unless anyone has any objections Leasnam (talk) 17:17, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
If an OE/ME etymon is attested and the phonological development from it to heapmeal is regular, I would view inheritance as the simpler explanation, and so agree with how you've rewritten the etymology. But I've added a context label "rare, largely obsolete". Century had only the 1610 citation mentioned above, and marked the word obsolete, but our 1939 citation is from within living memory (for some people), so I added that qualifier "largely". - -sche (discuss) 22:31, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

guy/guys gender[edit]

(Searching through the archives on such a common word is hopeless. At least I couldn't find any recent relevant discussion)

The article on guy reads as if dated. I've seen plenty of young women calling their (all-female) gang "guys". Please update to contemporary usage. In other words, tone down the certainty. In particular, I dislike the (unsourced) discussion about pussycat dolls - I can't shake the feeling of bias / prejudice there.

But go have a look yourself. Thanks CapnZapp (talk) 10:08, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

I don't see a huge change in contemporary usage. Douglas Hofstadter had a discussion on it in one of his books, pretty similar to what we say, and I don't see much of a change. --Prosfilaes (talk) 10:39, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
I don't see that our usage notes are of much help. This edit in particular seems inadequate, perhaps misleading.
Clearly the term is used in a more gender-neutral way now than it formerly was. The first two senses were apparently the only ones in the 19th century. It would be somewhat interesting to get some indication of when the word was beginning to be used in reference to mixed-gender and to all-female groups and to female individuals (very late 20th century). Though search is difficult, it is not hopeless, depending on some cleverness and persistence. Also, the gender reference question applies, I think, to both definition 3 and to definition 6. DCDuring (talk) 13:47, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
I don't see the problematic certainty there. Would you ever hear the line "The Pussycat Dolls are a bunch of guys" and not think that the speaker is claiming they're male? There's a context rule there; it's hard to see that as conveying information unless you assume that "guys"=males.
Haschak Sisters - Girls Rule The World "Someone please explain how we can find the two of you in the park pigging out, acting like a couple of guys." (About 30 seconds in.) It's clear that even to a young audience, guys is clearly male in certain contexts.--Prosfilaes (talk) 12:44, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
From my perspective there is generally a connotation of "men", even when cultural trends lead to "male" things being allowed/default for either gender. It seems comparable to how some people assert that "dude" is gender-neutral, but "go ask a straight guy if he fucks dudes and then get back to me"; some speakers may use the word to refer to people of other genders, but some hearers will always perceive the word as gendered/gendering. Slate has an article on that. Adding references to the usage notes and rewriting them to be clearer would be good. - -sche (discuss) 17:54, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
I would say that if it can be genderless in some contexts devoid of anything that even hints at gender/sex, but if it has a gender, that gender is always masculine. Chuck Entz (talk) 18:19, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
We don't have gender in nouns in English, so the question is badly phrased. I presume the OP is talking about sex.

"pick-up artist" vs. "incel"[edit]

The article incel claims the word is used primarily in the seduction community. Is this correct? The Wikipedia article never mentions the word, and the word seems to be more related to sexual frustration and hatred of women. This article in The Guardian specifically distinguishes incels from pick-up artists and men's rights activists. Jc86035 (talk) 11:29, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

  • seduction community would be a nice expression to have in WT. --Gente como tú (talk) 12:19, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Unfortunately, a good part of our coverage on such terms comes from a banned user who used his/her imagination a bit too much. Cleaning this up requires knowledge of usage in places most of us never visit. It's definitely a problem. Chuck Entz (talk) 14:54, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
As I've said here, I don't think incel is much used in the seduction community. It's a manosphere term. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:45, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
I don’t think it is wise to differentiate. If you have learned from the “PUA” community to address random 100 women to get laid, you are probably an incel. One must be careful not to accept self-descriptions of such communities, some are no doubt internet marketing scams, the question is just which.
To gather all those communities defined by their positions about women, a label manosphere would not be bad. Palaestrator verborum sis loquier 🗣 18:06, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
From what I've seen (mostly Reddit), incels, despite claiming to want a female partner, mostly hate and demonise women; they come across as those angry kids who end up doing school shootings. Whereas PUAs are more about hanging around bars etc. trying to pick up as many women as possible via slimeball tactics, since eventually statistically they have to manage to bag one! I don't think the incel approach would impress the PUA at all, so their "communities" aren't really the same. Equinox 19:03, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
There's a short documentary on the incel community called Shy Boys: IRL that you can look at for further amusement education. Crom daba (talk) 09:42, 10 January 2018 (UTC)


Does 'unboxing' need a separate sense to cover unboxing clips or does it fall under the existing definition? Thanks. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 15:32, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

"removal of something from its box" seems right to me. —suzukaze (tc) 02:58, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

«English öra»?[edit]

The entry at Ohr lists "English öra" as a cognate, together with English ear. Now I don't recall English having umlaut, and öra gives only Icelandic or Swedish. Which was meant? Maybe there is another language with öra and that's the one meant there? Or did "öra" actually exist in English at some point? MGorrone (talk) 16:09, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

In this case it was just a typo: before the conversion to {{cog}}, it had the right label (“Swedish”) but the wrong lang code (“en”). Ungoliant (falai) 16:19, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
@Ungoliant MMDCCLXIV You didn't put enough tildes. I fixed it for you.
Regarding English not having umlaut, what about über, which is one of the alternative spellings listed under uber? Tharthan (talk) 17:35, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
Well I didn't know that loanword existed, let alone that it had the umlaut. I guess I should have said "outside recent loans", which "öra" is AFAIK not. MGorrone (talk) 09:43, 11 January 2018 (UTC)


What's with the first def? Are these even distinct? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:11, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

Sense 2 could cover a device that doesn't tell the time at all, and is only watch-like in being worn on the wrist (e.g. keep-fit devices) - are there such devices that don't tell time? I know nothing about gadgets. Equinox 19:13, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
I'm just familiar with the FitBit (which does cover the time), but with the amount of circuitry in one of these, not covering the time would be silly. I can't imagine once you've got the LCD there and enough hardware to be "smart", that you wouldn't offer the time.
The Pokemon Go Plus is worn on the wrist and doesn't tell time, but I wouldn't call it "smart" or a smartwatch. The advertising copy goes with "wearable device".--Prosfilaes (talk) 06:19, 10 January 2018 (UTC)


It occurs to me that we should probably include an entry for this common wiki jargon. ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:50, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

It occurs to me that we should only do so if it meets CFI, and I don't see enough actual uses of the noun on Google Books to justify that. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:22, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
Previously failed RFV. Equinox 19:49, 10 January 2018 (UTC)


With a word like jeera, for example, which (I believe) is transliterated from an Indian dialect, do we have a way of requesting that someone add the word in its original language (and alphabet) to the listing? And do we have a Category for transliterated words? (If not, might it be worth having one?) Thanks in advance. --Philologia Sæculārēs (talk) 08:30, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

Use {{rfe|lang=en}} to request an etymology of an English word. Use {{bor|en|hi|}} if the source language of an English word is known (e.g. Hindi) but not the original script or the correct spelling. Note the missing parameter after the second language code. The templates will categorise accordingly. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 08:47, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
@Philologia Sæculārēs: In any case, I think it ज़ीरा (zīrā) or जीरा (jīrā) "cumin". --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 09:04, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
@Atitarev: Thanks very much, Atitarev. So is jeera a word from the Hindi dialect? (And if so, do we know whether or not it's shared by other Indian dialects?)
Probably a bigger issue is that (unless Wiktionary's definition of 'English' includes words not normally used in countries where English is the first language), 'jeera' isn't actually an English word. The English word is 'cumin' (same goes for methi vs 'fenugreek', saunf vs fennel, aloo vs potato). They are all transliterations. However I'm unsure of how to change them and to which dialects.--Philologia Sæculārēs (talk) 17:31, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
Latin includes words not normally used in the Roman Empire, sometimes for concepts not known when there were still first-language speakers of Latin. India is a country where English is a frequent interlanguage between people with no other shared language, and however weird it may get sometimes to people in the US and UK, Indian English is still English.--Prosfilaes (talk) 07:32, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
Oh, ok. Thanks for the clarification, I didn't realize that Wiktionary used "English" that way. (p.s. I'm not in the US or UK)--Philologia Sæculārēs (talk) 12:01, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
Just to clarify, I was more concerned about the real source language of these words getting short-changed by them being (what seemed to me) inaccurately labelled as being from another language. --Philologia Sæculārēs (talk) 12:05, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
Wiktionary uses English that way, because so does everyone. What else are we supposed to call the Romance-influenced Germanic language that is spoken in India? Why are American borrowings English and Indian borrowings not-English?--Prosfilaes (talk) 12:49, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
When used as English words, they're not transliterations. A transliteration is when you write (for example) a Hindi word in the Latin alphabet. But if someone says "I added some methi to the aloos", they aren't speaking Hindi, they're speaking English and using Hindi loanwords. A transliteration can only be found in writing, for one thing, while a loanword can be found in speech. It doesn't make sense to say "transliteration of Hindi जीरा (jīrā)" in the etymology section of an English word. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 14:14, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mahagaja Maybe we should delete {{transliteration}}, which we're using in some entries. What do you think? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 14:20, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
I looked at a random sample of its uses and didn't see any that I thought were necessary, so I'd support deletion. But of course we should keep things like {{got-romanization of}} for entries that really are transliterations. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 14:24, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, I'm only talking about the etymology template. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 14:30, 11 January 2018 (UTC)

while we're at it - while one is at it?[edit]

Should we have that? Other dictionaries have it.

--Per utramque cavernam (talk) 12:10, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

I would argue for having all the attestable contracted and uncontracted personal-pronoun(-tense?) variants as hard redirects to while one is at it. DCDuring (talk) 15:39, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
Yep. Equinox 19:52, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

Appendix:Vulgar Latin Swadesh list[edit]

A few Latin words lost among an ocean of PIE... Anyone up to cleaning this up? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 18:42, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

deep throat[edit]

At the wikipedia article deep-throating, it's said that "the term was popularized by the 1972 pornographic film Deep Throat."

I guess that title must be construed as a noun: "<a> deep throat". But which came first then? The verb "to deepthroat", or the noun "deep-throating" from which the verb was back-formed? Is/was there a noun "a deepthroat" = "an instance of deepthroating"?

Or is it attested before 1972? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:18, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

In the movie deep throat is a noun, so I'd guess that the verb came next, and deep-throating from the verb; you don't add ing to a noun to make a synonym of the base noun. —Tamfang (talk) 01:34, 11 February 2018 (UTC)


I doubt the existence of Cantonese pronunciation. Dokurrat (talk) 15:36, 11 January 2018 (UTC)

@Dokurrat: Surprisingly, it's actually used in Cantonese ([8]). I've always thought it's only used in Cantonese until I've looked into other lects. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 16:15, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
@Justinrleung: Quoi?? Thank you. It's surprising. I was thinking something similar to yours too, just not "Cantonese"... Dokurrat (talk) 16:25, 11 January 2018 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── @Justinrleung I see the etym has been requested in that page. Can I write something like "One possibility is that it is from *波羅 (“knee”) + 蓋"? As I see this in Hanyu Fangyan Da Cidian: "[波罗]…(2) <名> 膝。江淮官话。江苏东台。清嘉庆二二年《东台县志》:“膝谓之~”". Dokurrat (talk) 16:37, 11 January 2018 (UTC)

@Dokurrat: I'm mostly concerned with 波羅, i.e. is it related to "pineapple"? — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 17:29, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
@Justinrleung: Oh! I think the etymology of *波羅 is not gonna be easy to trace, if possible. Dokurrat (talk) 17:33, 11 January 2018 (UTC)
@Dokurrat: I've seen something about it being from Manchu or Jurchen, but I can't confirm it. @Wyang, Zcreator, any ideas? — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 00:25, 12 January 2018 (UTC)

@Justinrleung, Dokurrat

  • Publications by Chinese authors: I checked some Chinese references that mention this as being of Manchu origin (e.g. 近古汉语里由于语言接触而产生的东西, 满语词语在东北方言中的遗留), but they did not mention the exact Manchu word. One other reference that looks promising is: 赵杰:《融合过程中的满语和汉语》,载《满语研究》1993年第1期。 but it doesn't seem to be available online.
  • About the Cantonese usage: very strange and unexpected. Discussion one:
天津方言称膝盖为“玻了盖”,据调查山东、河北、北京等不少地方称膝盖为“波罗盖”(或经语音换位变成“格棱拜”,即声母形式为“k-l- p”),有研究表明“波罗盖”是女真语“波罗”与汉语“盖”的合璧词,冀鲁官话有少数词语来自北方民族语言,有些已进入通语而走向其他方言。而据台湾李仲民先生的研究在广东肇庆端州、深圳沙井和珠海井岸,即珠三角的边缘,将膝盖称为“菠萝盖”,地理语言学将“菠萝盖”于珠江三角洲地区的特殊分布称为“跳跃扩散”。“玻了盖”、“波罗盖”、“菠萝盖”的声母形式均为“p-l-k”的三音节词,各说法之间相似的语音形式是否与军话有关,都需要语言学工作者给予进一步的关注和研究。
  • About Manchu: Overall, searching the Manchu dictionary yielded no perfectly suitable word for "knee" or "kneecap", or other phonetically possible sources. In detail:
  • Publications by non-Chinese authors:
    • An interesting discussion is in Historical, Religious and Genetic Context of Tangwang (2017), on "knee" [puə22 luə24 ke42] in the Tangwang language:
Iwata et al. (2009) have already observed that many Chinese dialects do not use the word 膝盖 xīgài ‘knee’, a term used in Standard Mandarin. They employ 波棱盖 bōlenggài to express “knee”. The pattern p-l-k is concentrated in the North (Iwata et al. 2009: 220). Their research results correspond closely to those of Chinese scholars (Li et al. 1995; Chen and Li et al. 1996) who show that the p-l-k pattern is mainly found in Northern dialects. Among 93 sites they have investigated, 39 take the form p-l-k, within which 20 also use other forms to indicate “knee”. Among the 19 dialects which have a single form to express “knee” in the p-l-k pattern, 16 are located in the North or Northwest while 3 are found in the South.6 For example in Beijing speech, two terms are used: 磕膝盖儿 kēxīgàir and 波棱盖儿 bōlenggàir. It is interesting to note that in Wutun, a language which is more mixed than Tangwang, this word is pronounced “polo-gaize” (Janhunen et al. 2008: 121). All these facts suggest that [puə22 luə24 ke42] in Tangwang is not an isolated case and probably has the same source as other dialects and Chinese varieties. But the problem has not been solved: where does this term come from? The earliest example I found in a non-Han language is in the 清文指要 Qīngwén zhǐyào [Outline of the Manchu language] annotated by Zhang and Liu in 2013. The earliest version in which 膊洛盖儿 bóluògàir ‘knee’ is attested dates to 1809. But we cannot confidently assume that this word was loaned from the Manchu language in Northern China and expanded to many dialects. In several Manchu dictionaries (Norman 1978; Hu et al. 1994), it is noted that the word “knee” is tobgiya or buhi. Phonetically these words have nothing to do with the widespread p-l-k pattern in Chinese varieties. Did Manchu borrow this word from Chinese? Further investigations are needed to find the origin of this word. For now we only know that this word in Tangwang is a common word widespread in Northern Chinese dialects.
    • An even more interesting read is: Iwata (2007), “Dialect Contact and the Production of Contaminated Forms — A Reconstruction of the History of Chinese Words for ‘Knee’” (方言接觸及混淆形式的產生-論漢語方言「膝蓋」一詞的歷史演變). Absolutely recommend this article (福利), and other publications by Iwata. (Anyone got his 汉语方言解释地图? :))
  • Trivia: I'm reminded of Middle Korean mulwuph ("knee") > modern 무릎 (mureup).
  • Too long didn't read: Read this.

These for now. :) Wyang (talk) 14:28, 12 January 2018 (UTC)

@Wyang: Whoa! Dokurrat (talk) 18:39, 12 January 2018 (UTC)

@Wyang, there's a Proto-Tungusic *belge (kneecap, knee) (e is schwa) attested in all of the branches except Manchu (see Tsintsius vol. 1 pg. 123) and there are some irregular cognates (or maybe borrowings from Chinese or a third language?) like Nanai било̄ки, Udihe бёло, Solon bolooxi (also borrowed into Daur) and Oroch милэуки. Not sure what to make of this. Crom daba (talk) 23:51, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

@Crom daba Thanks, this is very helpful. I think this should be mentioned in the etymology (when someone gets to write it). Wyang (talk) 23:57, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

Pronunciation of biche[edit]

The pronunciation of biche in French at https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/biche#Pronunciation sounds wrong. It sounds like two syllables, like (in English) ven deesh or ben deesh. It doesn't sound like a native French speaker speaking, as if it was someone who speaks French as a second language, badly. Compare to the two version at https://forvo.com/word/biche/ . Note that I don't speak French. --Chuck Baggett (talk) 06:50, 12 January 2018 (UTC)

It's reading it with the article une (feminine "a"), which seems to be the norm for all French nouns. It sounds perfectly fine to me. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 06:55, 12 January 2018 (UTC)


Can this be attested as a word in English? ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:56, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

No, but the word was on the edge of the old one-pound coin in Latin: decus et tutamen.


Are the links to Wikia and YouTube not formally appropriate for a Wiktionary entry to be citing/linking to? PseudoSkull (talk) 08:30, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

Why shouldn't we cite anything that is useful to us? Certainly YouTube is a stable page for the video found there.--Prosfilaes (talk) 03:23, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
Don't cite Wikia wikis. —suzukaze (tc) 03:33, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

peto: from *pesd or *perd?[edit]

I just came across an answer by Oscar Tay on Quora, and in the comments he says peto peido and péter all come from PIE *perd like English fart. I was wondering how the r got lost, so I tried to browse Wiktionary for intermediate steps on peto, finding peto<peditum<pedo<*pezdō<*pesd, peido<peditum<…, péter<pet<peditum<…, and I bet pedo<peditum<…. Whoops! Contradiction! So who is correct? If Oscar Tay is, then how did the r got lost? If WIktionary is, it seems the s weakened to z and got lost entirely; are there other examples of such an evolution or is this a one-off case? MGorrone (talk) 13:14, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

@MGorrone: sīdō, which comes from *sizdō (notice the compensatory lengthening). I'd say we got it right, but *perd- and *pesd- are probably related anyway. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:24, 13 January 2018 (UTC)


I believe we are missing the sense as in "organized religion", "organized crime", etc. ---> Tooironic (talk) 16:34, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

Not to mention “organized desk”. — Ungoliant (falai) 17:25, 13 January 2018 (UTC)
I think both senses are covered at organize#Verb. DCDuring (talk) 17:51, 13 January 2018 (UTC)
Other dictionaries (Merriam-Webster, Dictionary.com, Cambridge, MacMillan) seem to generally accept "organized" as an adjective with two senses, one for ~"affiliated through an organization; unionized" ("organized workers") and one for ~"having formal structure to carry out activities" like "organized football" and "organized religion". A few even have the one adjective sense we have, for being an efficient individual. It meets at least some tests of adjectivity, e.g. one finds "very organized religion" and "the most organized religion", and it forms the basis for an adverb "organizedly". - -sche (discuss) 18:22, 13 January 2018 (UTC)
Indeed. I was wondering whether the comparability/gradability adjectivity tests are not very often almost always met by "-ed" forms of verbs. For example, do we need an adjective section for accented? It would seem to need at least two senses, one for music, another for speech, but perhaps also for artwork and descriptions of organisms. At least partial attestation for these can be found at Google Books ("very accented"). DCDuring (talk) 19:04, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

scardey cat[edit]

Alternative spelling or misspelling? I would think the latter. Mihia (talk) 18:37, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

  • Definitely the latter. DonnanZ (talk) 18:54, 13 January 2018 (UTC)
    Relabelled accordingly. - -sche (discuss) 19:45, 14 January 2018 (UTC)
OK, thanks. Mihia (talk) 18:03, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

blow off steam[edit]

Can this mean "to relax, to unwind"? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 01:38, 14 January 2018 (UTC)

  • I don't think so - it seems to be active rather than passive. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:11, 14 January 2018 (UTC)
Our definitions seem weird, maybe overspecific. The phrase seems very similar to "vent", for example you can call someone on the phone to talk (not shout or yell) to "blow off steam" (this is confirmed by the Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms), although A Dictionary of Confusable Phrases does suggest that the talking or acting has to be done in an "unrestrained" manner. - -sche (discuss) 19:44, 14 January 2018 (UTC)


I don't get the [Attested from the mid 16th century until the early 17th century.] next to the first sense. Does it mean that sense is obsolete? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:44, 14 January 2018 (UTC)

Since the sense seems to still be used, I think the defdate is a confusing attempt to say that the date of first attestation falls somewhere in that range, and needs to be rephrased like "First attested sometime between ... and ...". - -sche (discuss) 19:38, 14 January 2018 (UTC)
That was my thinking as well. I've changed the entry. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 18:21, 16 January 2018 (UTC)


1. We are possibly missing a non-sexual sense: google books:"bukkake noodles" gets a few hits, although only of compound words and not bukkake by itself, ditto bukkake udon, but maybe other phrases get more food-related hits.
2. Are the two sexual senses, for "the act of..." and "the genre of pornography centered around this act", really distinct? I don't see how. I'll merge them if there are on objections. - -sche (discuss) 19:36, 14 January 2018 (UTC)

1. I asked a Japanese friend about this some years ago when I found bukkake on a menu and recoiled in shock. It is clearly attestable in English, and I have added the sense to the entry with wording modified from the Japanese entry.
2. I see that you have already merged the sexual senses; I support this. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 21:31, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
@Μετάknowledge -- FWIW, the EN term derives ultimately from the JA compound verb 打っ掛ける (bukkakeru), from 打つ (butsu, to hit something, possibly implying with a thump or thud) + 掛ける (kakeru, to cover one thing with something else). I believe the food context preceded the sexual one, but I can't find anything definitive (and to be honest, I'm not researching this very deeply). For food, the basic idea is plopping one thing on top of the dish, like a big dollop of heavy sauce or other fixings. Butsu also has a sense of “to shoot something off, to fire”, which may be a factor in the sexual sense of bukkake.
HTH, ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 22:05, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

monkey wrench, throw a spanner in the works[edit]

Where I live, we pretty much just say "throw a wrench (into the works)". No "monkey" about it.

I found this which supports the existence of the phrase which I am familiar with.

May "throw a wrench (into the works)" at least be added as an alternative form of throw a spanner in the works if nothing else? Tharthan (talk) 21:58, 14 January 2018 (UTC)

Well, if nobody has any objections, I'll add it as an alternative form. Tharthan (talk) 18:01, 16 January 2018 (UTC)


Said to be the past participle of intention, but we don't have a verb section at that entry (rightly so, I should think). --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:50, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

Intentioning looks attestable. I can find ~20 instances of the collocation have|has intentioned. It looks like intention#Verb is justified by the facts. DCDuring (talk) 14:57, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

give someone a break[edit]

Why is there a {{trans-see}} leading to rest? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 20:14, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

The definition line included two definitions that do not have the same synonyms. Transitive rest#Verb is a synonym for the first, though I doubt that a user who needs the entry would quickly find the specific definition. I've split them, but {{trans-see}} should direct the user to the right definition of rest. DCDuring (talk) 21:02, 15 January 2018 (UTC)


Once again a heavy handed revert, so? do we promote proper grammar or not?

Article is A not An if initial vowel is silent (Opossum)

but once again, despite properly identifying the rule of grammar, someone virtually auto reverted contrary to proper English grammar. PLEASE GIVE RIGHTS TO SOMEONE WHO AT LEAST KNOWS ENGLISH. --Qazwiz (talk) 20:41, 15 January 2018 (UTC)--Qazwiz (talk) 20:40, 15 January 2018 (UTC) (article Possum)--Qazwiz (talk) 20:47, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

@Qazwiz: You've edited the wrong entry, I'm afraid. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 20:48, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
the possum is this link https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/possum#Noun --Qazwiz (talk) 21:21, 15 January 2018 (UTC) sorry for confusion
The 'o' is not silent, but you are right about the rule. - TheDaveRoss 20:55, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
Mr. Ross, i suggest you check a dictionary, the O is silent, anyone who says OH-possum is wrong--Qazwiz (talk) 21:21, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

UGH! I cannot believe how horribly the Language has been treated! 50 years ago teachers would have flunked all wikis! now all Opossum soundings are saying "a possum" I guarantee 50 years ago that was marked as incorrect. --Qazwiz (talk) 21:40, 15 January 2018 (UTC)

I give up, I'm voting for Hillary. this is not the American you are looking for --Qazwiz (talk) 21:47, 15 January 2018 (UTC) SARCASM !!!

After edit conflict...
Qazwiz, I have no idea where you get your information. I grew up in Virginia with family in the north and midwest, and have heard both pronunciations, spelled more or less as spoken, and (in the vernacular, at least) referring to the same scrappy North American marsupial. If pronounced with an initial open vowel, it's spelled opossum; if the first sound is a consonant, it's spelled possum.
As a separate issue, I've never heard of English having silent vowels on the front. Silent h, sure, but I sure can't think of any silent vowels at the moment.
If you have any interest, there's related discussion in several threads at w:Talk:Opossum. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 21:58, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
I've referenced the pronunciation sections of both opossum and possum; other references do say the first o in opossum is sometimes silent, but it can also be pronounced. - -sche (discuss) 22:09, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
@-sche, agreed re: references. In my life experience so far, I've never encountered "silent o". Be that as it may, we seem to have adequately refuted Qazwiz's odd insistence that "the O is silent, anyone who says OH-possum is wrong". ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 22:16, 15 January 2018 (UTC)
Raw hits at Google books for "an opossum" are twenty times more common than for "a opossuum". "A possum" is a bit more common than "an opossum". Evidently authors and editors try to make the spelling correspond to the pronunciation.
Stack exchange had a discussion on the point about 4 years ago and finally got a thorough, good response this past September. DCDuring (talk) 22:21, 15 January 2018 (UTC)


Abbas says this also means "lion"; if so, can someone add a noun section? - -sche (discuss) 01:36, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

I don't think it actually means "lion." In the context of someone's name, it is the description of a lion. عباس means austere, frowning, sullen, sulky, and it describes a lion, so if you ask someone named Abbas what their name means, they may say "lion," which has the qualities of عباس. —Stephen (Talk) 13:37, 17 January 2018 (UTC)


Does Sichuanese pronunciation ha3 exist for 哈#Etymology 4? Dokurrat (talk) 17:31, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

@Dokurrat I can only say that it applies to 哈巴狗, not for the other senses listed there. There's still much to be done about that entry in terms of splitting by etymology. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 18:49, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

lead someone a dance, lead someone a merry dance, lead someone a merry chase[edit]

Being unable to parse this idiom (since when is lead a ditransitive verb??), I dug around a bit. Is the explanation put forth in the second message of this thread (that it's really lead someone on a merry dance, with the preposition being elided) reasonable? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 18:20, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

how can I delete an entry I made yesterday?[edit]

I entered a word that I totally made up, confusing the (sometimes) satirical purpose of the Urban Dictionary for Wiktionary. —This unsigned comment was added by Skyflier0652‎ (talkcontribs).

I will do it for you. Thanks for your willingness to fix the mistake. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 18:28, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

Thanks so much - the word is 'frighteousness'. Thanks again!

(Old English) Inherited sex[edit]

The English word sex is a loanword from French. In Old English (or Modern English, if such word survives dialectally until today), which germanic inherited word denoting "sexual intercourse" (in a socially-accepted slightly-formal non-vulgar sense, just like "sex" has, but "f*ck" and alike don't) was displaced by this French borrowing? -- 18:54, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

I can only think of swive, but that's a verb. Not sure if it is ever used as a noun...but then there's swiving. These two words meant "to copulate" and "intercourse" in Middle English, but the forerunner word OE swīfan, if ever used that way, was never recorded with that meaning... Leasnam (talk) 20:20, 16 January 2018 (UTC)
In Middle English there was dede (deed), as in "do the deed" but I don't see that sense in Old English. Then there's knowledge which has a parallel in OE cunnan (literally to know), but the general word for intercourse in OE seemed to be hǣmed, which kind of survived into ME as haunt, but I don't think anyone uses it today to mean anything like that... Leasnam (talk) 20:31, 16 January 2018 (UTC)
Incidentally, the use of sex to mean "sexual intercourse" is relatively recent: our etymology section says it dates back only to about 1900, in the works of H. G. Wells. It may have only become common with Freud, though: Mapp and Lucia (1931) has a quote, "Tranquillity comes with years, and that horrid thing which Freud calls sex is expunged." —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 20:40, 16 January 2018 (UTC)
If this is true, then the use of sex to mean "sexual intercourse" is English in origin (?) Does this indicate that languages that use this sense borrowed it then from English ? Leasnam (talk) 20:54, 16 January 2018 (UTC)
@Leasnam It probably does. That is the case at least for German and Dutch. ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 10:30, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
Thank you ! I suspect that that is the also case with other languages as well... Leasnam (talk) 14:36, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
In the Etymology of English sex, it says the Middle French term sexe also meant "intercourse"...the Middle English term certainly did not record this meaning: it only means sex as in "gender" (male or female). Can we confirm if the Middle French sense is correct ? I only find uses referring to "gender" and in Old French to "genitalia" Leasnam (talk) 20:45, 16 January 2018 (UTC)
I also think that pointing to Middle French may be an error as well, as most dictionaries I see either point the ME to Old French or directly to Latin Leasnam (talk) 20:47, 16 January 2018 (UTC)
If I'm reading the TLFi correctly, the sense of "sexual intercourse" for French sexe hearkens back to the mid-19th century only. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 10:46, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
Hm! If they're saying that and they're right, we should remove "sexual intercourse" from the list of things Middle French sexe is glossed as meaning in the etymology section of sex. - -sche (discuss) 15:11, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
I've updated the English etymology. Leasnam (talk) 04:31, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

Is there a such thing as...[edit]

Is there a term for a word which is also a personal name ? For instance: Bob and bob; Brian and brian, Jack and jack ? If so, would it be worthwhile to categorise them ? Leasnam (talk) 20:16, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

I have heard the word "capitonym". Mihia (talk) 01:03, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
Ah, yes that is like pole "long rodlike instrument" vs. Pole "person from Poland" where capitalisation changes the meaning...that's close but not quite the same thing, though all the examples I provided above are also capitonyms :) Leasnam (talk) 01:58, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
Why is this anything more than homonymy? The word brian has zero connection to the name Brian. DTLHS (talk) 02:11, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
Well, we have palindromes, do we not ? Why ? There should be a special nomenclature given to words that are homonyms for names as well...I should think :\ (?) Leasnam (talk) 03:26, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
Okay, so I guess the answer is "No.". No worries. Thanks all ! :) Leasnam (talk) 03:27, 17 January 2018 (UTC)


Can anyone check the accuracy of this edit? Pinging recently-active Serbo-Croatian speakers @Crom daba, Vorziblix. The word is attracting attention as a Serbo-Croatian translation of the phrase "shithole (country)" which Trump made headlines for using. - -sche (discuss) 21:11, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

Using a strictly literal reading, either interpretation could be possible, although the one we currently have is probably more likely to cross speakers’ minds; the literal etymological meaning is along the lines of wolf-fuck-place, and so leaves the exact connection vague. Regardless, I think it’s more likely that the jebina part of this is just a generic term of abuse rather than a reference to actual wolf-fucking. Unfortunately I don’t have any etymological resources that can confirm this or any other interpretation. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 22:13, 16 January 2018 (UTC)

IPA for vowel tenseness in Sichuan Yi[edit]

What is the correct IPA symbol to use for indicating tenseness (loose throat vs. tight throat) in Yi vowels? Most authors use some sort of underline for showing tense (tight throat) vowels, like here and here, but in standard IPA, that symbol represents a retracted sound. This is also problematic for /z̩/, as underlining it would make it confusing. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 07:13, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

Perhaps the underscore could work; Nuosu language#Vowels says the tense vowels are “laryngealized and/or show a retracted tongue root”. The combination // seems to be rendered correctly on my computer (though it could be confusing). Wyang (talk) 07:52, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
If they're laryngealized you can use U+0330 (◌̰) for them. You can probably dispense with the syllabification marker for the tight-throat /v̩/ and /z̩/ since only the syllabic fricatives are phonemically laryngealized; the normal nonsyllabic fricatives don't have this tense/loose distinction, do they? Alternatively, you can use the nonspacing laryngealization marker U+02F7 (˷) if you want to keep the syllabification marker. So my recommendation is to take your pick between /z̰/ and /z̩˷/ for the tight-throat syllabic /z/. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 10:32, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
@Mahagaja: If I were to pick /z̰/, should I still use /z̩/ for the loose throat version? — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 13:59, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, because unmarked /z/ would be ambiguous between syllabic and nonsyllabic, but /z̰/ can only be syllabic. I'd also recommend writing Appendix:Sichuan Yi pronunciation and making everything clear there. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 14:07, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

let me show you my etchings, would you like to see my etchings?, etc.[edit]

(No, that's not an offer.)
Are the clichéd innuendos above includible? Attestation is not a problem,[9] [10] despite the high number of variants, but I'm not completely sure about their idiomaticity. Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 13:25, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

I'd try see someone's etchings and show someone one's etchings. Redirects from the more common variants, using appropriate personal pronouns, would get users to the main entry. Some common sentences or longer phrases such as are in the headings would make good usage examples for the same reason. DCDuring (talk) 13:33, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
I don't feel like this is lexical at all. I wouldn't even call it a euphemism for "have sex". It's just a (formerly) common trope in comedy. When I first saw this James Thurber drawing I didn't understand the joke until one of my parents explained it to me, but I don't think there's any dictionary entry that could have made me understand it. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 20:05, 17 January 2018 (UTC)
We sometimes use non-gloss definitions ("Used to ....") in cases like this that might fall under pragmatics. DCDuring (talk) 02:17, 18 January 2018 (UTC)
It looks like variants are included by dictionaries of catch phrases and also by one "Asperger Dictionary of Everyday Expressions".[11] ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 13:46, 19 January 2018 (UTC)
An "Asperger Dictionary" seems perfect for identifying idiomatic expressions. DCDuring (talk) 17:21, 24 January 2018 (UTC)
I think the cartoon referenced above is a clear indication that the expressions were, at least at one time, so widely understood as to allow contrapuntal humor. DCDuring (talk) 17:15, 24 January 2018 (UTC)

Netflix and chill[edit]

The post above made me check the history of the word Netflix and chill. As often for this kind of words, Wikipedia is much more informative than us. I'm tempted to copy-paste here the entire "Origins" paragraph.

They also have several interesting categories, for example: w:Category:Words coined in the 2000s. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 14:18, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

It's not necessarily a bad thing to accept that some etymologies are very encyclopaedic in nature, and we can give a brief summary and then link to Wikipedia's treatment of it. As for the category, that'll be good fodder for when I get around to creating a {{coinage}} template. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 03:21, 18 January 2018 (UTC)


Do the two definitions really constitute different senses? "For a brief period of time" necessarily implies "not permanently". Ultimateria (talk) 17:44, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

I would suggest changing "brief" to "limited" and merging them. Other dictionaries I made a quick check of also seem to detect only one sense. - -sche (discuss) 19:02, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

as all that: as + all that?[edit]

Should we have an entry for this? The noun sense we have ("That, and everything similar; all of that kind of thing; and so on, et cetera") doesn't really explain why "as all that" means what it means, IMO.

--Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:33, 17 January 2018 (UTC)

if you say so, as you say[edit]

Do those deserve entries? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 00:50, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

harlot - adjective usage[edit]

Unless I miss my guess, the quotation used to illustrate the adjective sense of harlot ("While she with harlots feasted in my house") is actually a noun. Do I miss my guess, or should this be removed/replaced? Cnilep (talk) 07:36, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

I added a quote from Nick Joaquin, though I'm not sure if it clarifies the usage. Cnilep (talk) 07:57, 18 January 2018 (UTC)
You're right, I've moved the quotation to the noun section. - -sche (discuss) 14:51, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

As a separate matter, I'm not entirely sure this is "archaic". Phrases like google books:"media harlot" get very modern hits, which don't seem to be trying to seem old. Maybe "now uncommon"? - -sche (discuss) 14:51, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

@-sche Perhaps the tag was meant to convey that people use the term when they try to sound archaic, like imitating the KJV. The term does seem in current use on Usenet. ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 10:19, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes, "trying to sound archaic" or "trying to sound old" is what "archaic" means, but many citations like "media harlot" don't seem (at least to me) to be trying to sound old. - -sche (discuss) 16:42, 5 February 2018 (UTC)


I don't think there is any need for two translation sections, they are virtually identical, and they were one and the same people after all. DonnanZ (talk) 12:12, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

holocaust quote from 1938[edit]

Can we confirm the existence of the citation from 1938 added in diff? When I search for it, the very few results look like Holocaust-denier websites (which I haven't clicked on, because: illegal), and it gets no Google Books hits. It seems to fit a political agenda (oh look, the Jews/Zionists used the word to refer to a holocaust of Germans!) so perfectly that, in the absence of proof of its existence, it seems like an invention... - -sche (discuss) 16:04, 18 January 2018 (UTC)


RFV-pron: kāla for the sense "black". @Wyang — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 17:03, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

@Justinrleung It's from 《汉俄大词典》 (Большой Китайско-Русский Словарь): [13]. Wyang (talk) 07:05, 19 January 2018 (UTC)
@Wyang: OK, thanks! — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 13:34, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

paper cut[edit]

There is another sense of this term in software development jargon which signifies something to the effect of

  • a software bug or design decision that results in frequent annoyance, though not by itself typically enough to discourage use of the software

Wikipedia has paper cut bug, which establishes the etymology, though the treatment there doesn't quite capture the expanded use given above. For example, the Rust Programming Language Blog uses:

Previously, you’d have needed to write x += *y in order to de-reference, so this solves a small papercut.

Similarly, their RFC #2126 uses:

From an ergonomics perspective, one often ends up with many mod.rs files open, and thus must depend on editor smarts to easily navigate between them. Again, a minor but nontrivial papercut.

From this later example, I gather that, in current usage, paper cuts need neither be trivial nor really caused by a "bug": this one arises from a design decision, however poor, that is nonetheless working as intended in practice. The unifying concept seems rather to be that the bug or design decision is a nuisance, but not an impasse, likely in reference to phrase, "death by a thousand paper cuts."

Has anyone spotted use of this sense of paper cut outside of the Rust programming language community? –Rriegs (talk) 20:41, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

The use of paper cut to refer metaphorically to some minor harm occurs in many realms. I don't see anything special about the use you describe in software. We should have the metaphorical definition. DCDuring (talk) 21:37, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

woolly back[edit]

Per discussion with @Robbie SWE, he has recommended that the above article be mentioned to solicit additional opinions. The above article has had a back and forth, it would seem for the last decade, on what the term means. I have made two edits to the article today (one I can agree, being rightly reverted) and a second providing expanded definitions and background, as well as references. It would be appreciated for anyone to look the recent edit over for comments, and to make adjustments to fit to the MOS of the wikitionary. 20:49, 18 January 2018 (UTC)

We should figure out which spelling is most common and centralize content there. It is not good that different spellings list somewhat different senses in a way that does not seem supported by use. - -sche (discuss) 23:40, 18 January 2018 (UTC)
Based off my own research, it seems that "wooly back", "wooly-back", "woolly back", and "woolly-back" are used interchangeably and mean the same. Both articles could be merged, or both edited to reflect what the sources state? 23:50, 18 January 2018 (UTC)


Something's weird here (etymology 2). Firstly it looks like a taxonomic name (so should be Translingual, not English?), and secondly we have an already-plural definition ("a group of...") but the headword says that the plural of Hamites is "Hamitae". What giveth? Equinox 07:13, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

Undecimber, Duodecember, Duodecimber[edit]

Basically defined as "months that don't exist". I feel we need some context: are these used in fantasy fiction? Are they important in computing? (I gather that some software calendars use them as placeholders in certain situations.) What do they mean? That's our job. Equinox 10:24, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

Isn't the question rather "Where are they used?" instead of "What do they mean?". The meaning of Undecimber could simply be "nonexisting 13th month", while the context could be "used in bookkeeping regarding Christmas box". - 17:25, 21 January 2018 (UTC)


Why is there an inflection table transcluded in the headword-line template {{ka-adj}}? Now there are two identical tables in the above entry. @Dixtosa? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 12:01, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

defender ?= lawyer[edit]

Have any of you ever run into the sense "lawyer who represents defendants"? It sounds like interference from other languages and isn't in any dictionaries i checked. --Espoo (talk) 18:35, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

Well, there's "public defender" as a very native/normal English term, and google books:"public defender" "the defender" suggests that "defender" is used by itself in roughly that sense at least some of the time. It's a little harder to make sense of the uses that google books:"the defendant" "the defender" turns up; some may mean "defendant" and some may be interference from e.g. Chinese, but some seem to also be this sense. - -sche (discuss) 18:55, 19 January 2018 (UTC)
Even if "only used as trivial abbreviated reference" or being an "interference from other languages", wouldn't diff require a WT:RFVE or WT:RFDE?
en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/defender has "Scots Law another term for defendant", so "defender" might mean "defendant" in some google book results.
- 17:14, 21 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, the sense clearly exists, including (I thought my citations showed) in native English. I've restored the sense. I suspect that both "lawyer" and "defendant" are attested. - -sche (discuss) 18:16, 21 January 2018 (UTC)
According to my research and according to a lawyer i asked, "defender" is never used in English in the sense "lawyer who represents defendants", only as an abbreviation of the term "public defender", and only after the full term has been used first, not as a "real" abbreviation. As a result of the incorrect definition #2, we now have a huge list of incorrect translations that spread into other languages and Wiktionary versions in other languages, when we should instead be providing these nonnative speakers of English with the correct translations "defense attorney" (US) and "defence counsel" (Uk) of the terms now listed in the translations. Instead of wasting time on trying to find evidence for possible extremely rare use of "defender" for "lawyer who represents defendants", we should first produce entries for the two missing very common and important terms. --Espoo (talk) 20:04, 21 January 2018 (UTC)
Espoo's understanding of the usage fits with my understanding.
We should probably use {{trans-see}} (possibly with {{senseid}}) more, thereby directing translators and users to the more common English terms. DCDuring (talk) 16:51, 24 January 2018 (UTC)
WordNet and three legal glossaries have entries for defense attorney, one has three distinct (sub)senses. DCDuring (talk) 16:55, 24 January 2018 (UTC)


I'm not sure, but has a new meaning of this word emerged? That makes me wonder is not limited to following usages:

  • [14]
  • [15]
  • [16]
    「ROG Bezel-free Kit」基本能达到将边框隐藏起来的效果,虽然仍旧能隐约看到套件轮廓的阴影,也比拼接后那种汽车 A 柱既视感的效果好不少。

Dokurrat (talk) 20:46, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

I tryingly added the presumed new sense to entry 既視感. Dokurrat (talk) 21:35, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

elementary school tactic, grade school tactic, kindergarten tactic[edit]

I think these are SoP and not even particular common. Same creator made the deleted "what are you, six". Feelings? Equinox 21:16, 19 January 2018 (UTC)

Agreed. Can this be moved to RFD? PseudoSkull (talk) 21:42, 19 January 2018 (UTC)


Does anyone know the status of comrad ? Is it an alternative form for comrade, non-standard, or a misspelling ? btw, there's also comradship Leasnam (talk) 02:12, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

Okay, well, I couldn't find it in any dictionaries, but due to the high Google hit count I made the entry as a misspelling Leasnam (talk) 16:00, 20 January 2018 (UTC)
It's the name of several companies, but I don't think it's a legit misspelling. —AryamanA (मुझसे बात करेंयोगदान) 18:42, 20 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, but if you do a search for "comrads" it becomes clear that many are spelling it that way...in fact, it's actually pronounced as though it were spelt com-rad, so I can see how easily one could spell it this way, at least in North America Leasnam (talk) 19:39, 20 January 2018 (UTC)


stumbled on the "wiktionary" entry.

I speak VERY little German. But was reading Heidegger's "Letter on Humanism" in English. He appears to claim that the root is "mag" or to favor ... or "like" according to my meager vocabulary.

"Possiblity" of course has an almost entirely neutral connotation. Is this also true for "moglichkeit?"

The basic meaning of this root in German is "may/might/able to" and it is neutral. Specific to German among germanic languages, it also means to "like" someone or something (Ich mag das.). I am not certain, but I believe that sense developed during the Modern German period (?) Leasnam (talk) 02:30, 20 January 2018 (UTC)
The sense of "like" was present in Middle High German as well, but not in Old High German as far as I can tell. Leasnam (talk) 02:33, 20 January 2018 (UTC)
"Possibility" is rather positive, in contrast to "impossibility", anyway.Rhyminreason (talk) 21:59, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

Wine emulator entry[edit]

Should we have an entry for it? The only reason I'm asking is that "Wine" is a recursive backronym for "Wine is not an emulator", and we generally keep acronyms...right? PseudoSkull (talk) 03:21, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

  • Isn't that "WINE"? SemperBlotto (talk) 07:03, 20 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Hmmmm... "The name Wine initially was an abbreviation for Windows Emulator.[15] The phrase "Wine Is Not an Emulator" is a reference to the fact that no code emulation or virtualization occurs when running a Windows application under Wine.[16] "Emulation" usually refers to the execution of compiled code intended for one processor (such as x86) by interpreting/recompiling software running on a different processor (such as PowerPC). Its meaning later shifted to the recursive backronym Wine Is Not an Emulator in order to differentiate the software from CPU emulators.[17] While the name sometimes appears in the forms WINE and wine, the project developers have agreed to standardize on the form Wine.[18]" PseudoSkull (talk) 07:15, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

morpion etymology[edit]

I noticed a plea for a Hudibras quotation - there are two in Gutenberg.

It is also misspelled 'morpeon' in Scott's 'Antiquary'.

Sorry I don't know how to add this information, maybe some 'Harmless WikiDrudge' could do it.

spetacciare once more[edit]

I already remarked here that the usage example at spetacciare doesn't use spetacciare at all. I proposed an alternate usage example, but didn't add it in because the source was a random website, so maybe a better example could be found. Nothing happened since, so I'm reposting the issue. MGorrone (talk) 10:58, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

I'll add the example from p. 203 here aka here searching for "spetacci". Also, someone should create sfracassare with the example from spetacciare. MGorrone (talk) 11:16, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

Someone please check my creation of sfracassare and translation of the new example of spetacciare doesn't feature errors, and validate the example I provided in the older post. MGorrone (talk) 11:24, 20 January 2018 (UTC)


We currently have one definition, but many non-English entries have glosses for both "in the dimension that isn't time" (I tried) and "in outer space". Does it merit splitting? Ultimateria (talk) 17:39, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

Yes, I've split them, although the "outer space" sense seems uncommon? Other dictionaries discern two senses but they both seem to relate to the dimension of space... - -sche (discuss) 19:25, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

long-page, long-scrolling, and/or single-page[edit]

A modern web page design pattern that has gained popularity in recent years is to put a large amount of content on a single, very long page. This is distinct from just not breaking up an otherwise linear article over multiple pages, but rather often comprises multiple different articles/topics into a single page, one stacked on top of the other. It is often composed with w:parallax scrolling (whereby not all page elements scroll at the same rate) or other scrolling-driven animations to create a more engaging experience, though not necessarily so.

What properly is this design pattern called? I've found some use of the terms long-page, long-scrolling, long-scroll, single-page, and various other combinations both with and without hyphens, though none stick out as a clear winner. Further, I can't find any "official" uses, e.g. by Mozilla or Google—the examples I've found are mostly SEO content for "let us design your website for you" businesses—nor any obvious definitions in dictionaries or Wikipedia, etc. Does anyone here have any experience with this subject? –Rriegs (talk) 18:55, 20 January 2018 (UTC)

Do you mean infinite scroll? If not, please link to an example. Equinox 13:53, 21 January 2018 (UTC)
infinite scroll is a related web technology, but not quite the same. Infinite scroll adds content to the bottom of a page as you reach it, typically from nigh-inexhaustible news feeds like Facebook, while the pattern I'm describing does have a concrete end. Some example such pages are:
  • https://www.apple.com/iphone-x/ – This page is essentially a set of slides for the device's various feature. These could have been their own pages, but content is lumped together to provide a fluid (and linear) viewing experience.
  • https://github.com/features – This page has a navigation bar that updates to reflect your current position as you scroll through the page. Clicking links on the nav bar just scrolls to the content.
In my experience, many other product features pages (essentially, product pages acting like giant ads) have a similar pattern. Another common theme of this pattern is that the pages contain real content, not just headlines or links to elsewhere (e.g. the main pages for various news sites). –Rriegs (talk) 19:54, 22 January 2018 (UTC)

Is Jurchen an ancester of Manchu?[edit]

For Manchu words that have Jurchen origin (such as ᠠᠪᡴᠠ), should we consider them as inherited (Template:inherited) from Jurchen? When I apply this template, the error info says "Jurchen is not an ancester of Manchu". But I think Jurchen is an ancester of Manchu. This is a quote from Wikipedia: "In 1635 Hong Taiji renamed the Jurchen people and Jurchen language as 'Manchu'." Before 1635 it was called "Jurchen" and after 1635 "Manchu", so it is basically the same language development line with different stage of development at each time.--Pawmot (talk) 08:00, 22 January 2018 (UTC)

I agree with you. Wyang (talk) 09:49, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
@Rua, JohnC5, Benwing for admin thoughts. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 17:50, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
There's no use in pinging me, I know nothing about these languages. —Rua (mew) 17:59, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
I pinged because Module:languages/data3/m is protected to admins only, and consensus here was to implement Jurchen as an ancestor to Manchu. "Thoughts" was certainly the wrong word, I stand corrected. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 19:13, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
Wyang is probably our most knowledgable editor on this subject, and a quick survey of reference material (Gertraude Roth Li's Manchu: A Textbook for Reading Documents and Barbara A. West's Encyclopedia of the Peoples of Asia and Oceania) also agrees with treating Jurchen as an ancestor of Manchu, so I have set it as such. - -sche (discuss) 18:33, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
Thanks. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 19:13, 22 January 2018 (UTC)


First def: "requiring urgent attention"? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:54, 22 January 2018 (UTC)

I'd assert "widespread use". DCDuring (talk) 22:10, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
The wording is weird, though, since it's often a positive, whereas something that "requires urgent attention" sounds dire. Other dictionaries speaking of "demanding" attention, which is not much better, or having an "irresistible effect", which is vague. What if we added something to the definition along the lines of "strongly or irresistibly evoking interest"? - -sche (discuss) 22:24, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
It's so weird that I thought it was another sense I wasn't familiar with... I find your wording much better. Google's def is "evoking interest, attention, or admiration in a powerfully irresistible way." --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 23:50, 22 January 2018 (UTC)
Sure. I missed the negative valence, which made it only the lesser half of the definition it actually has. DCDuring (talk) 01:06, 23 January 2018 (UTC)


Can someone add the definition pertaining to hospitals? Ultimateria (talk) 23:57, 22 January 2018 (UTC)

Isn't that def 4: "An organized group comprising people and/or equipment."? DCDuring (talk) 01:08, 23 January 2018 (UTC)
Yeah I guess that's it. For some reason I was thinking the hospital sense had to be more specific, but now I don't remember my logic. Ultimateria (talk) 16:10, 23 January 2018 (UTC)


Is lin4 a verifiable Cantonese pronunciation for etymology 1? Dokurrat (talk) 01:29, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

@Dokurrat: According to the Multi-function Chinese Character Database, lin4 is a variant pronunciation of lin5, citing 粵音韻彙 (黃錫凌) and 廣州話標準音字彙 (周無忌、饒秉才). However, 粵音韻彙 only lists 瑚璉 under lin5 and doesn't give any example for lin4. 《粵音韻彙》與《李氏中文字典》粵語注音考異 (蕭敬偉) suggests that lin4 is derived from 陵延切 in Jiyun, which would be etymology 2. I don't have any way to access the second dictionary, but I think it's safe to say that lin4 should be for etymology 2. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 03:59, 23 January 2018 (UTC)
廣州音字彙 (馮思禹, 1962) also says that lin4 is the same as 連. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 04:02, 23 January 2018 (UTC)
@Justinrleung: Okay. I'll keep lin5 only for etymology 1 unless new evidence surfaces. Dokurrat (talk) 04:06, 23 January 2018 (UTC)
@Justinrleung: And thanks for investigating this! Dokurrat (talk) 04:08, 23 January 2018 (UTC)
@Dokurrat: No problem! — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 04:09, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

tax free vs. taxfree/tax-free[edit]

Is it correct that these terms are not synonymous? Our current definitions:

  1. tax free: of an item being sold with the proprietor paying the taxes on behalf of the consumer, or of an item that exploits a particular loophole (or an intentional temporary waiver of a particular tax by the government)
  2. taxfree, tax-free: exempt from taxation

--Hekaheka (talk) 11:34, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

They are the same. (To me it looks wrong with a space, but people are sloppy with hyphens these days.) The first, long definition you quote just seems to be a narrower case: tax-free to the consumer etc. Equinox 14:04, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

baptism by fire and baptism of fire[edit]

I suppose these entries should probably be merged with one becoming an alt of the other? Or are there differences in meaning? Most dictionaries at OneLook have two senses (first experience of combat; ordeal or initiation), by the way, and Merriam-Webster and the British version of Collins also have a sense for "baptism of the spirit, baptist of the Holy Spirit". ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 13:47, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

how so[edit]

Why is there an adverb header? I don't see how it could work syntactically. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:48, 23 January 2018 (UTC)

It was added in this edit and I think it should just be deleted, because it's just a copy of the phrase section with the part of speech changed. I suppose how so? is an adverbial phrase (an adverb, so, modified by another adverb, how), but in that case it should just be called a phrase. — Eru·tuon 00:01, 25 January 2018 (UTC)

How do you call[edit]

the handle with which you can lift or lower the windows of a car? window lever? window winder? window lifter? (power window if it's electric?) --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:33, 24 January 2018 (UTC)

I don't recognise "how do you call" as meaning anything in English. Do you mean "what do you call"?
Window crank and crank handle are used to raise and lower crank windows. See w:Power window and w:Crank (mechanism) for uses. DCDuring (talk) 23:19, 24 January 2018 (UTC)
UK = 'Window winder handle', but it feels like something I can't imagine saying in everyday life, but maybe that's only because they don't exist enymore? 'Window winder handle' is probably UK-only. [17] Also, possibly 'window handle' or 'car window handle'. [18] Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 23:02, 25 January 2018 (UTC)
Isn't window winder redundant? <... ducks under desk ...>  :) ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 22:48, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
You will probably still find window winder handles in vehicles such as vans. DonnanZ (talk) 09:53, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
Or is winder pronounced /ˈwaində(ɹ)/, like the verb? I've used these before, but it was when I was a kid and I don't remember what we called them. (Brings back memories.) Maybe we didn't call them anything; I do recall "roll up the window". — Eru·tuon 09:58, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
For winder#Etymology 1 it should be per this audio. winder#Etymology 4, which I imagine is still used, should be pronounced as in the first syllable of window. Oh, and I would wind the window up or down. DonnanZ (talk) 15:13, 28 January 2018 (UTC)


I have just added 'lapping' in the sense of 'the lapping of a bow', but there seem to be other missing senses, at least one is evident from Wikipedia but it's something I'm not familiar with about machining. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 23:50, 24 January 2018 (UTC)


How do you parse this compound? Is it a specific kind of table, a "table that turns/makes turn/..." (endocentric compound, "table" is the head), or is it "something that turns tables" (exocentric compound, similar to scarecrow, sawbones, etc.)? I've always assumed it was the former, but the Spanish translation tornamesas is making me reconsider. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:44, 25 January 2018 (UTC)

In English it is endocentric. (BTW, senses 1&2 should be combined.) DCDuring (talk) 22:55, 25 January 2018 (UTC)
A table that turns. In the case of a locomotive turntable it's not even a table, but a track mounted on a couple of girders, the whole thing turns inside a turntable pit. DonnanZ (talk) 01:11, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Kabardin-Cherkes тхылъымпӏэ[edit]

Should be тхылъымпӀэ. Andres (talk) 23:41, 25 January 2018 (UTC)

It's the ӏ vs. Ӏ issue. I believe we are handling this in an unorthodox manner, but I can never remember what exactly we are doing. —Stephen (Talk) 18:57, 1 February 2018 (UTC)


Is the Dongan Dungan IPA correct? Dokurrat (talk) 22:07, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

I don't think it is. The module is not ready for erhua yet. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 22:48, 26 January 2018 (UTC)


The latin word cubus is defined in its article with „a mass, quantity“. In the entry cube which is named as translation there is no definition with a mass, quantity. --2A02:908:C31:B780:4883:A37C:C3EE:59F8 20:16, 27 January 2018 (UTC)


After this change https://en.wiktionary.org/w/index.php?title=samsara&diff=48482988&oldid=48482869 (actually, it was not a joke at all), let me ask a question. In French, the spelling samsarâ is much less usual and much less logical than samsâra, but it's found in a number of books, and it seems that it is used in about 10% of cases on the Internet (much less in books). In English too, this spelling is found in some books. My question is not what's the best spelling? but rather Is there any reason why some writers or translators might prefer this spelling? Lmaltier (talk) 21:17, 27 January 2018 (UTC)

Ignorance of Sanskrit is the reason. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 21:29, 27 January 2018 (UTC)
I was meaning, this spelling in French or in English, not in Sanskrit. Even mistakes may have reasons, especially in such a case. Lmaltier (talk) 18:57, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
I understood the question; I meant that the reason some people might spell it samsarâ is that they're ignorant of the Sanskrit original word. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 20:01, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
But why this precise spelling? Note that saṃsarā is almost never used (this is not surprising), but this spelling is used nonetheless in a few books, and even in book titles... Anybody else? Lmaltier (talk) 21:02, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
For the same reason other books use "sâmsara", a few use "samsârâ", and a few even use "sâmsarâ", etc. Viz: as Mahagaja says, the authors didn't know which letter the accent belonged on, and so sometimes put it on one wrong letter or another (or several). - -sche (discuss) 22:00, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

A possible reason: according to https://www.thefreedictionary.com/Samsarah the American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language mentions the Sanskrit word saṃsāraḥ (transcription of संसारः the nominative singular form of the word). samsarâ might be a transcription of संसारः or of its transcription, ā becoming a and aḥ becoming â. Do you think it's possible? Lmaltier (talk) 13:17, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

Next let's discuss Ghandi … —Tamfang (talk) 08:05, 29 January 2018 (UTC)


I hate to ask similar qusestions. But, is this word used in Cantonese? Dokurrat (talk) 00:05, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

@Dokurrat: Sorry for the late reply. I've never heard of this word, but it seems to be used in Hongloumeng, which might be read in HK schools in Cantonese. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 06:04, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Dokurrat: Ok, I found a Cantonese recording of Hongloumeng here, and the pronunciation we have is the same. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 06:15, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Justinrleung: Thank you for your investigation! Dokurrat (talk) 06:41, 9 February 2018 (UTC)

if anything[edit]

if anything is the word of the day (28 January 2018) and it has a few issues.

Definition 1 suggests it is only used after a negative. It can also be used after a positive:

  • “Do you think she’s tall?” / “Oh, no. If anything, she’s short.”
  • “Do you think she’s tall?” / “Oh, yes. If anything, she’s very tall.”

This makes it the same as definition 2.

The quote from 1710 in definition 2 does not demonstrate the correct meaning:

  • For if Fancy be left Judg of any thing; ſhe muſt be Judg of all. Every thing is right, if any thing be ſo, becauſe I fancy it.

"anything" is being compared to "everything". It could be replaced by "any one thing" without changing the meaning. This quote should be removed and there are many other quotes with the correct meaning. Danielklein (talk) 22:18, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Thanks for the close reading. Take a run at revising it when you have the chance. DCDuring (talk) 03:51, 29 January 2018 (UTC)


Is there a reason why we do not currently have any translations for the word gold (noun)? ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:12, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

Oh, I see, they've been moved to a separate page. Never mind. ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:14, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Performance problems. DCDuring (talk) 03:53, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
To make it more noticeable, I have experimented with placing it in a band, using {{trans-see}}. DonnanZ (talk) 09:47, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
I think that's a good idea. - -sche (discuss) 15:33, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
What we have is a system that fires for every translation at every load of the page, but the data on which it operates might only be entered once in the lifetime of the entry. Isn't there something like 'subst' that could effectively fire only when there is a change in a given translation (or at least some translation on a table or on a page)? DCDuring (talk) 19:43, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
I do think we should be subst:ing in rather than auto-generating the transliterations, and could possibly subst: the langname= parameter, too. I may start a WT:GP discussion about that later. - -sche (discuss) 20:13, 29 January 2018 (UTC)


How should the word dernier as it appears in the quotation at Citations:dernier be defined, and is this use verifiable in English? I had difficulty finding similar uses in English. — SGconlaw (talk) 15:43, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

It's a historical coin of some kind. DTLHS (talk) 16:57, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Maybe an alternative spelling (misspelling?) of denier ("An old French coin worth one-twelfth of a sou")? DTLHS (talk) 17:12, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Dernier as "coin" doesn't really seem to fit the use in the 1988 quotation, though. However, for the other quotations you located, I agree it looks like a variant or misspelling of denier. — SGconlaw (talk) 17:48, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Page 73 in your book seems to support the currency interpretation. DTLHS (talk) 17:52, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
I'm not clear what is meant by "dernier 18", "dernier 5", and so on. Why not "18 dernier[s?]" if a form of currency is referred to, like "30 million livres"? — SGconlaw (talk) 18:21, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
No, in French, it's not a currency or a coin (in this case), it's a special use of denier. This is very clear from https://www.google.fr/search?q=%22denier+14%22&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-b-ab&gfe_rd=cr&dcr=0&ei=nI1vWuP8E6Sk8wf_gKEY Why dernier in English? Probably a mistake. Lmaltier (talk) 21:13, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Looking at [19] it seems the correct term is denier, but I'm still unclear as to what it means. — SGconlaw (talk) 03:04, 30 January 2018 (UTC)
Ah, this may help: [20]. Not sure why the word denier is used, though. — SGconlaw (talk) 03:07, 30 January 2018 (UTC)
It would appear to be an interest rate, which also seems to fit in with the page 73 quote. DonnanZ (talk) 13:29, 30 January 2018 (UTC)

Dafydd pronunciation[edit]

Dafydd doesn't have a pronunciation listed. I was trying to figure out of the 'dd' at the end is pronounced as a /ð/, and from further googling I think it is. Wikipedia's Dafydd ap Gruffydd page suggests that it's been pronounced IPA(key): [ˈdavɨ̞ð], at least at some point in the past (1283!), but I don't know if that's still accurate so didn't want to go ahead and try adding it to the relevant page. Could someone confirm this and add it? Thanks. Throne3d (talk) 18:17, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

That looks right, but I'll wait for someone who actually edits Welsh. @Angr can add the IPA. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 18:35, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Dammit, @MahagajaΜετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 18:36, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes check.svg DoneMahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 18:48, 29 January 2018 (UTC)
Thank you! Throne3d (talk) 15:45, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

bestevader and bestemoeder - older Dutch?[edit]

The present-day terms are grootvader and grootmoeder for grandfather and grandmother, but looking at “bedsteforældre” in Den Danske Ordbog (grandparents) makes me wonder. DonnanZ (talk) 20:14, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

@Donnanz Yes, they were common terms until the 19th century, and they're still used in certain dialects, often without the -d-. ←₰-→ Lingo Bingo Dingo (talk) 09:52, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
@Lingo Bingo Dingo: Thanks for the entries too. DonnanZ (talk) 10:42, 5 February 2018 (UTC)

Elided forms of Italian personal pronouns[edit]

How common are things like m', t', s', etc. (except for l') in Italian? According to their entries on here, some are more common than others, but I looked online, and they don't appear to be that common at all. Esszet (talk) 22:14, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

@IvanScrooge98? Esszet (talk) 15:55, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

@Esszet: if you ask me, I would say elided forms are generally most common before /i/ (for evident reasons), and also frequent elsewhere in colloquial Central-Southern Italian, while their usage is less common in Northern variants. When it comes to the written and/or elevated language, it seems they’re less and less used, though they can still be found. [ˌiˑvã̠n̪ˑˈs̪kr̺ud͡ʒʔˌn̺ovã̠n̪ˑˈt̪ɔ̟t̪ːo] (parla con me) 17:12, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Alright, thanks. Esszet (talk) 17:30, 2 February 2018 (UTC)


What does "pertaining to an alien" mean? There are four noun senses. Ultimateria (talk) 00:59, 30 January 2018 (UTC)

Presumably it means "pertaining to an alien" in any of the four noun senses. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 10:52, 30 January 2018 (UTC)
For the sake of translations I found that very unhelpful, so I added the extraterrestrial sense and figured the sense for foreigners was already covered. Unless there's some reason we should keep that vague definition. Ultimateria (talk) 15:46, 31 January 2018 (UTC)

RFV peristeropodous[edit]

Do you think this {{affix|en|{{m|grc|περιστερά||pigeon}}|-pod|-ous}} > περιστερά (peristerá, pigeon) +‎ -pod +‎ -ous well formed? Sobreira ►〓 (parlez) 12:50, 30 January 2018 (UTC)

I'd write {{affix|en|περιστερά|-pod|-ous|lang1=grc|t1=pigeon}} (rendering as "Borrowing from Ancient Greek περιστερά (peristerá, pigeon) +‎ -pod +‎ -ous") or, if you don't want the "Borrowing from" text in front, simply {{bor|en|grc|περιστερά|t=pigeon}} + {{af|en|-pod|-ous}} (rendering as "Ancient Greek περιστερά (peristerá, pigeon) + -pod +‎ -ous"). —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 13:06, 30 January 2018 (UTC)
That borrowing text really shouldn't be there. —Rua (mew) 13:11, 30 January 2018 (UTC)
I agree, and requested five days ago at Wiktionary:Grease_pit/2018/January#Affix with lang1 that it be fixed, but no one's done anything about it yet. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 15:09, 30 January 2018 (UTC)


I'm a bit confused by the 'generation' meaning being linked to the 'knee' meaning, although I guess the metaphor works, sort of (are there any other body-part/family tree metaphors in OE)? I was struck reading this entry in Bosworth's OE Dictionary:
On pg 79 he has 'cneo' listed seperately to 'cneow', and with the meanings 'generation' and 'knee' respectively. 'Cneo' he links with a 'vide' to 'cneoris', and 'cneow' has the 'knee' meaning but then has it alongside 'relationship' and the quote 'binnan cneowe' as meaning 'within relationship'.
Furthermore, this digitization of Mary Johnson's A MnE - OE Dictionary has it's entry for 'cneow' as both 'knee' & 'generation', with 'cneo' pointing back to it. (inverse of what is on here)
So which is it? Strange word... Eigooms (talk) 04:03, 31 January 2018 (UTC)

Huh...Good question. B&T also show it as a sense of cnēo (knee). Reminds me of German Enkel which originally meant "ankle, joint" but now means "grandson". I now wonder if cnēoris might not be a compound word with cnēo as its first element (i.e. cnēo + *ris, *res (?)) (cf. cnēorīm)... not sure...will have to dig ... Leasnam (talk) 23:26, 31 January 2018 (UTC)

February 2018


How legitimate is the term loxism? The earliest reference I can find is 2006 on Urbandictionary, followed by 2008 at Vanguard News Network (see w:Alex Linder) and Uncyclopedia (now-deleted); it more recently appeared on the Daily Stormer and certain parts of Twitter. It seems fair to revert this edit at the very least, but I'd like to get a second opinion on all this. grendel|khan 05:05, 1 February 2018 (UTC)

Looking around, the word does seem to be mostly or entirely limited to neo-Nazi jargon, so I've restored a tag. We probably need one or two consistent labels for terms in several languages which are like that, including ((( ))), übermensch and ghost skin in English, and Rassenpflege, Blutschande, Rassenschande, and other Nazi jargon terms in German. Something like "{{lb|en|white supremacist ideology}}"? (Many terms are most typical of (neo-)Nazi jargon, but are there enough terms which are limited to specifically-Nazi white supremacy to require a separate label for that?) Currently, "Nazism" is encoded as a topic label, although many entries use it to indicate Nazi jargon. - -sche (discuss) 06:16, 1 February 2018 (UTC)
I've added a label and category, but I'm not sure it's preferable to have two categories ("white supremacist ideology", "Nazism") and not one. But so many terms are most typical of specifically-Nazi jargon/contexts that it does seem like the more expected label than the broader "white supremacist ideology". Meh. - -sche (discuss) 20:17, 1 February 2018 (UTC)


I feel like putting "politically correct" under the See also section of -person is a bit unnecessary. Sure, I can see why there'd be an association but putting it there seems inflammatory towards the existence of gender-neutral language, especially considering the modern context of the term. Lookatroopa (talk) 21:46, 1 February 2018 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Someone's removed it. Equinox 16:29, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Why would the fourth sense (nationality) be 'implied male', btw? Seems to me that the point of using the suffix is exactly to avoid gendering, not to imply a specific gender. The cite doesn't seem to support that specification either. — Mnemosientje (t · c) 16:35, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Looks like a copy-paste error from -man; now removed. Can we mark that one "non-standard"? e.g. "Scotperson" sounds utterly absurd. Equinox 16:38, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Yep, thanks for catching my copypasto (the entry was in a poor state with only one sense before I expanded it). Sense 4 does seem nonstandard, I'll tag it; I would expect "Norse person", "Scottish person" etc with a space as the standard gender-neutral phrase, and I wonder if that merits mention in a qualifier. Sense 2 is standard at this point. Senses 1 and 3 are harder to judge. - -sche (discuss) 16:49, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive[edit]

What is the relationship between these two (unlinked) terms? My instinct is to semi-merge them and say four-wheel is a synonym of all-wheel applied more specifically...but four-wheel is definitely the more common term, and I would consider it the main entry. Ultimateria (talk) 04:01, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

I'm no mechanic, so I can't give you a precise definition of either, but they aren't synonymous. Four-wheel drive provides better traction because power can be distributed to each wheel separately. All-wheel drive only allows for adjustment in power distribution between axles. That's my understanding, anyway. All I know for sure is they definitely aren't the same. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 06:39, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
All-wheel-drive could apply to a vehicle with more than four wheels or more than two axles. DonnanZ (talk) 16:37, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Struck that, Oxford says all-wheel drive is permanent four-wheel drive, 2-wheel drive isn't an option. DonnanZ (talk) 17:29, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Your struck comment seems to be correct, too; e.g. Mike Woof in Ultra Haulers (ISBN 1610592360), page 96, writes: "rigid-chassis vehicles with three axles and all-wheel drive had been used as dump trucks and by the military for years" (unless only two of the three axles had "drive"?). - -sche (discuss) 17:44, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Yeah, that's where 6x6 and 8x8 are used, as in Wikipedia six-wheel drive DonnanZ (talk) 18:06, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

Etymology of saoirse[edit]

saoirse meas freedom in Irish. The entry says it comes from Old Irish saírse. Then you go look at it, and it means craftsmaship. How did craftsmanship turn to freedom? The you look at the Middle Irish segment of saírse, and see two etymologies: meaning craftsmanship coming from OI saírse, and meaning freedom from OI soíre «modified to match etymology 1». So where does saoirse come from? OI saírse with totally unrelated meaning? Or the related MI meaning of saírse coming from soíre? MGorrone (talk) 10:27, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

It should (and in a moment, will) say that Modern Irish saoirse comes from Middle Irish saírse (freedom), which is derived from Old Irish soíre, but which had the s added under the influence of saírse (craftsmanship). The problem comes from the homophony of the two basic senses of saor: "free" and "craftsman, carpenter". They were originally quite distinct (Proto-Celtic *su-wiros and *saɸiros), but by late Old Irish they had become homophones. The fact that in feudal times craftsmen were free men, not serfs, led to the two senses becoming mixed up in people's minds, so the abstract noun associated with the "free" meaning changed its shape to become identical to the abstract noun associated with the "craftsman" meaning. So you could say the semantics of saoirse comes from Old Irish soíre (freedom), but the form comes from Old Irish saírse (craftsmanship). —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 14:20, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

male, female[edit]

section previously titled time-travellers knew about chromosomes in the 14th century?

As noted on Talk:male, definition 1 of [[male]] currently reads "Belonging to the sex which has testes and/or XY chromosomes. [from 14th c.]" But chromosomes weren't known until a series of discoveries starting in the 1880s, and sex determination wasn't known until the 1900s. As Pengo said: "Is there a way to phrase it so it doesn't appear anachronistic? Perhaps the clause about XY sex-determination could be dropped, as I don't think it adds greatly to this definition anyway considering the myriad of sex-determination systems in animals (and plants)." [[Female]] has a similar sense, but at least it lacks the claim of use by time-travellers in the 14th century.

I'm not sure how to revise it, but the entry needs to be robust enough to cover everything from "Pope Francis is male" and "an unidentified male figure, dressed all in black, was seen leaving the scene" (if the suspect is unidentified and clothed, his gonads and chromosomes are generally not known, but only assumed...) and "a male voice", to (quoting from Google Books) "the male gonad", "the nublike male chromosome", "male sperm fertilized the egg", and "XX male subjects" and "XXY male subjects", as well as e.g. a male writer who was born without, or subsequently lost, testes. (Perhaps our definition should say "Belonging to the sex which typically has..." or "Typical of the sex which [typically] has..."? And perhaps it should be split?)

"Male careers", "stereotypically male interests", "trans male writer", "male writer" used of a trans male writer, and other phrases pertaining to gender are apparently intended to be covered by sense 2, which however might also benefit from revising to "Belonging to or typical of..." to cover the first of those examples ("male careers"). Female needs to handle the mutatis mutandis counterparts of the preceding uses. - -sche (discuss) 16:41, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

You're absolutely right, of course. But given your excellent wording on related entries, I can't imagine I can come up with something better than what you can. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 17:23, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Typical seems like a very useful word for such definitions. This reminds me of discussion about scientific vs. everyday definitions of iron as a material. I didn't think about the anachronism at the time. DCDuring (talk) 17:35, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
The "unidentified male figure" (when male is only assumed) seems no different from an "unidentified Mediterranean assailant" etc. You can assume anything from a glance; it is not specific to sex/gender. Equinox 17:51, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Indeed. We shouldn't get into epistemic and evidentiary definitions or distinctions among definitions any more than we should get into definitions that differ by degree of sincerity with which they are written or spoken. DCDuring (talk) 19:09, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
True. I doubt most people today are thinking of chromosomes at all in the everyday use of the word, though, any more than the people who lived before chromosomes were discovered were(n't). A combination of dropping the mention of chromosomes (because as noted there are other male/female sex determination systems besides XX vs XY, in addition to there being XX males, etc) and editing it to "belonging to or associated with the sex which typically has testes" (giving "male chromosome" and "male hormone" as usexes) would seem to solve many of the issues, although I'll keep thinking this over. - -sche (discuss) 20:25, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I think it's important with such words that we start with a more colloquial, general definition and move into something more scientific by means of a phrase like "now understood as being…" or similar. The sun, for instance, could be defined as the "bright celestial object providing light in the day, now recognised to be the star around which the earth and other planets rotate". This covers uses from the twelfth century as well as modern ones, and I think it's important to say that they are not different definitions. (Though sometimes they are – see for instance planet, senses 1 and 2, which really are different.) There's nothing wrong with mentioning chromosomes per se, I don't think (though the OED doesn't) – it seems comparable to mentioning that a tiger is Panthera tigris despite the fact that the word predates the binomial classification. Ƿidsiþ 08:03, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
In general, I agree, especially with including the taxonomic name of the [[tiger]]. In this case, the diversity of factors influencing sex (and the fact they don't align in some hundred-or-so million people) means we must be mindful how we word it or the definition becomes inaccurate and "True Scotsmen"-y the more qualifiers are added — and there are quite a few qualifiers.
Having thought about this more, it's probably worth mentioning that until the 1800s external genitalia, not internal gonads or gametes, were the primary physical factor determining maleness vs femaleness, though a person's sense of self was long deferred to in cases where genitalia was ambiguous; using this as a definition is complicated, however, not only by the existence of intersex and trans people, but because not all species have penes, those that do are not all homologous, and there are species where the female has the penis-analogue and the male has the vagina-analogue.
In the 1800s, as doctors sought definitions to reduce the number of people who couldn't be classed as male or female, they switched to gonads. Our definition (of female, to which I recently matched male, mutatis mutandis), matching many other dictionaries', uses the gametes one produces. Later chromosomes were discovered, including in species that don't use XX-vs-XY, but they aren't definitional in everyday language because the other factors are easier to observe and arguably more important to a person's reproductive function. Development of Müllerian and Wolffian ducts is another component of whether someone is male or a female, but like genitals, gonads, etc, it can develop non-typically/non-alignedly and so has to be qualified. Then there are sexually-distinct brain structures that (seem to) correlate to gender identity.
I'm starting to come around to the idea of having a definition that mentions that diversity/evolution of factors up front, à la your "[definition], now understood to be [definition]", with "typically" qualifiers. I wonder if it would be most sensible to roll senses 1 and 2 together at that point. Adding subsenses might or might not be good. I'm just spitballing, but what about:
  1. Belonging to or characteristic of the sex which in most species typically has a penis, and typically also produces sperm or spermatozoa, which is now understood to be in most cases the one with XY (or in some species ZZ, X0 or X) chromosomes, or to the masculine gender which is typically associated with it.
? - -sche (discuss) 17:26, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
IMO, the boring common-person's definition is somewhat distinct from the evolving and taxon-specific definitions. Scientific definition of human maleness deserves a definition with subsenses. Maleness among mammals is close to the human maleness and is also subject to a popular definition. Among egg-laying taxa femaleness is more noticeable than maleness, except in mating behavior. Thus it is also definable in a popular way. Maleness in other taxa, eg, plants is much harder to observe and probably has only specialized (horticultural, scientific) definitions.
But, when all is said and done, we are a dictionary, not an encyclopedia, so we can and should limit ourselves to broad-brush coverage of this. DCDuring (talk) 18:08, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
There's a bit of ugh here; that literally says nothing. Which may be a property of the word, a box around humans and domestic animals that got extended to cover everything, so I'm not blaming you, but still. I'd drop the "(or in some species ZZ, X0 or X)"; I'm not sure it adds anything to anyone trying to use it. If we can split it down into large cases, where we say "in mammals it typically has a penis; in birds it's the non-egg laying group"? Or maybe go all the way there--define it as the group that fertilizes the egg, which I think gets more species (and birds, which are an important, very visible group of species) than "has a penis"?
It might help if our example quotes were more about the normal aspects instead of the more lexicographically interesting ones. The Platonic example of this guy on the Pioneer plaque with XY chromosomes is probably more useful, and more direct to what the word means to English speakers, than "in an XX male subject, SRY is absent in blood leukocytes but present in gonadal cells." (Nice citation sentence, but awful example sentence.)
Ugh. Words where cross-species biology, human biology, psychology, sociology, and contemporary politics intersect are never going to be fun, and I totally respect the effort.--Prosfilaes (talk) 18:17, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Yeah, it's tough; I think you're spot on that it's a problem of language-users conceptualizing a "box" with men and bulls in it as being a box they can also apply to everything [every species]. We don't want to focus on "non-typical" cases, but we can't deny they exist. I guess I'm OK with dropping the "ZZ" bit, since "in most cases the one with XY" still allows for cases where males aren't XY; or better yet we could stick to leaving chromosomes out entirely (except as a usex/cite), as we do at present. My reason for suggesting including "penis" is that that probably is an aspect ordinary users of the word have in mind, but I can't decide if I think it's actually needed or not! I'm OK with moving most of the "non-typical" cites to the cites page; I suggest having in the main entry 1-2 cites that refer to "typical" males, 1 that uses "male careers" or another collocation that shows why the def says "belonging to or characteristic of...", and 1 that refers to either an intersex or a trans male (or 1 each) to show why the def is qualified with "...typically...". I think it'd also be useful to string common and/or important/informative collocations together as a line of usexes, like:
a male artist; large male hands; a male voice; male insects; male plants; the male organ; male gonads; male chromosomes; male hormones; an intersex male patient; a trans male vlogger; traditionally male jobs
. - -sche (discuss) 19:28, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
I like your suggested def of 17:26, except that I'd cut the ZZ X0 bit and I also think that "belonging to" and "characteristic of" are in fact separate senses. A male voice is different from a male tiger, in the sense that it doesn't get together with a female voice and produce baby voices, and to me this difference seems fundamental. Ƿidsiþ 21:06, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Good point. Hmm, if we did split the senses that way, a lot of phrases even for things involved in reproduction but that aren't "reproducers", like "male hormones" that females also typically produce, might even make more sense under "characteristic of...". Also, "belonging to" kinda sounds like it means the same thing as "characteristic of"; I wonder if the first sense should be "being a member of the sex which..."? I guess it depends on whether we want sense 1 to cover only creatures, or also e.g. "the male chromosome". Well, spitballing take two: replace the current definitions 1 and 2 with these, [single brackets] indicating things I'm not sure about including, based on Prosfilaes' points:
  1. Being a member of the sex which, in most species, typically [has a penis and] produces sperm or spermatozoa [to fertilize eggs], or to the gender which is typically associated with it.
    male writers, the leading male and female singers, a male bird feeding a seed to a female, in bee colonies, all drones are male, intersex male patients, a trans male vlogger
  2. Characteristic of this sex/gender. (Compare masculine, manly.)
    a male voice boomed over the loudspeakers, stereotypical male interests, an insect with typically male coloration, like testes, ovaries also produce testosterone and some other male hormones
"The male chromosome" should be a usex under of the senses, but I'm not sure which one. - -sche (discuss) 16:41, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
I'm not convinced that this is (or isn't) a good idea, but: maybe if we added a third sense like "Tending to lead to or regulate the development of sex characteristics typical of this sex", it might cover "male hormones" and "the male chromosome" and "a male gene" even better than either the above-proposed sense 1 or 2. (And once all this is done, we can edit [[female]] to delineate things similarly.) - -sche (discuss) 16:49, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
I've revamped the entry in the manner proposed. - -sche (discuss) 00:09, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

make due[edit]

Is it fair to label it a misspelling if it is fairly well in use since at least the 15th century in phrases such as "make due preparations", "make due process" by the house of lords no less? Google books doesn't go to far before, but the french influence was stronger before that, so wouldn't it be reasonable to assume "make do" was a reduction of "make due _", even if both were infrequent at the start of the graph (the high peak renders the baseline invisible in proportion)? The uptick after 1950 is notable as well, likely an Americanism. If people write make due instead of the simpler do, that probably implies they are saying it like that, too, in which case it isn't a mere misspelling.Rhyminreason (talk) 19:11, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

‘Make do’ isn’t a reduction of ‘make due …’, but rather of ‘make it do’; see the quotes at make do for some examples. The use of ‘make due’ in ‘make due preparations’ and the like is not idiomatic and doesn’t have anything to do with the origin of ‘make do’, nor does it have the same meaning or syntax, hence why using ‘make due’ for ‘make do’ is usually seen as an error. Regarding people ‘saying it like that, too’, due and do are homophonous for the majority of English speakers, so confusion between the two doesn’t really imply anything. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 20:34, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
After e/c
In "make due preparations" and "make due process" we do not have a misspelling at all. We have "make" + "due preparations" and "make" + "due process".
I do not think you have presented evidence that "make do" is a reduction of "make due". A Google Books search for "make|makes|making|made it do" yields a number of early 19th and late 18th century quotes that seem to me to be in the current sense of make do, eg
  • 1830, Radical reformists, The radical reformists, by the author of The legend of Stutchbury[21]:
    ... as to candles, we dry the rushes ourselves, in summer, enough to serve the winter, and sometimes we get a bit of grease, which makes them burn brighter and last longer." "The more fool you, to make such pitiful savings. Your husband and boy earn but ten shillings a week, and you have all these contrivances to make it do.
Earlier we find the following:
  • 1679, Robert Hooke, ‎John Martyn (Londres), ‎Richard Chiswell (Londres), Philosophical Collections: Containing an Account of Such Physical, ...[22]:
    And therefore he that cannot make the experiment succeed in small, will be sure never make it do in great.
This seems to me to approach the current usage in its meaning.
Thus, to me the evidence is suggestive that make due is an erroneous Francified misspelling of make do. DCDuring (talk) 20:36, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
As for "saying it like that", Wiktionary says that for Americans, "do" and "due" sound the same, so what spelling is in use can not be derived from the pronunciation for many speakers.--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:04, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
None of that is tangential to the question in context prior to 1600. Rhyminreason (talk) 05:01, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
That all of America pronounces due like do is not true, if you'd ask around in New England. Anyway America is not pertinent to origin from before 1600.
"Make it do" doesn't appear in ngram before 1650 - in contrast to "make do with this wage" (1593). "make due fit" is from 1655, probably a misspelling in which case it is proof that due was pronounced do.
... doesn’t have anything to do with the origin - That's still the question. The argument is a bit ad-hoc. nor does it have the same meaning or syntax - I'm no grammarian, but there is hardly any syntax to speak of. At least, the placement of a zero grade is not really fixed by a position, because it has no position. The purpose of a blank is exactly to simplify the syntax, e.g. to be underspecific, e.g. because of lack of command of the language.
Why anyone would misspell a word as basic as do is beyond me. Rhyminreason (talk) 05:33, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
I believe that they are making an error about the spelling of the idiom, not of do.
Also, what does the OED have to say about this? DCDuring (talk) 15:52, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
I did not say that "all of America" pronounces it like that; in fact, I could would even infer from general knowledge that when someone says "X says Americans pronounce these words the same" that the British don't, and therefore some subset of Americans don't. And the last sentences of your original post are about here and now, not before 1600.
As DCDuring says, the problem is not "do", but "make do", which becomes reinterpreted as "make due". I can't say what was being used before 1600, but even if it was make due, that still doesn't make it not a misspelling in the modern day. If make due was the correct form before 1500, that doesn't even show it was ever the correct form in Modern English.--Prosfilaes (talk) 17:55, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Your circular reasoning is appalling. The question is whether "make due" is an individual expression. Your implied assertion that "make do" were a reasonably grammatical construct has hardly any bearing on the question.
As a weird example: If there was a stadium shaped like football, in which football had been played, but now it was used exclusively for American football, and a Brit says, let's go to the football-stadium, thinking he described the form, and an American said the same, thinking of the sport played there, then neither would be a misspelling in writing. And soccerball stadium wouldn't be, as well. Is my analogy insufficient? Rhyminreason (talk) 01:05, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
Hearkening back to your initial examples, all cases I've seen so far of make due are where due is an adjective modifying a following noun. Meanwhile, in make do, the do is clearly a verb. I fail to see how these two could be viewed as identical. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 03:43, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
@Rhyminreason The contribution with which you opened the discussion was shown to be faulty, make due being a non-constituent and not an idiom. Subsequently you have been argumentative, but it is not clear how your arguments relate to the original topic. You have not shown any idiomatic use of make due with a meaning related to make do or with any other meaning. It seems that you are now emotionally committed to "winning" the argument, not to making a useful contribution to Wiktionary. What due you now want the entry to say? Why? DCDuring (talk) 03:50, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
If I had a suggestion I would have named it. I only suggested not to describe make due as a misspelling. Because it is quite idiomatic either way. One link that I read estimates 10% of the expression to be written wrong. As mentioned above, its various applications are hard to search, because "make due" and "make due $NP" is a stark difference. Nevertheless The ngram showed that make due lost in popularity correlated to the increase of make do. The obvious inverse proportionality implies the subsumption of all usages of make due, constituent or not.
While we are down to 5% make due for make do now, that's just a doubling over the previous prevalence. I don't consider the 20th century archaic enough to disregard this.
I agree with the idiom to be considered in whole, of course, not only in the particular do/due, because the syntax is important. I wonder still how either could be formally grammatical at all, so that the distinction between the two could be analyzed as you say you did, because its chiefly colloquial.
I'm actually from the make do camp myself so refer to comments in the linked article to point out which senses of due make sense: As adjective "adequate" (adverbial I guess), or as noun "debt". Those alternatives don't make a difference, because "due _" is a noun phrase. By the way, the blank is supposed to be any implicit noun, a zero grade;. Of course proper nominalization of an abstract adjective would require the definite article. Ironically, someone who has to make do wouldn't care much for grammar.
Of course what I'm saying is a hard pill to swallow, that ca. 90% make a mistake. Who am I to say what's fact, anyway. The resistance is expected. It makes the problem difficult and hence interesting.
I suggest make due should be incorporated in the wiki as "variant". Rhyminreason (talk) 05:52, 11 February 2018 (UTC)

Should 'data liberation' have its own article?[edit]

data liberation can be defined as "A process of downloading of user's data from an online service like a social network or a forum." It isn't immediately obvious what it means. But, on the other hand, it may seem obvious. Yurivict (talk) 22:38, 2 February 2018 (UTC)

Probably yes. It could (but doesn't?) mean other things, like removing intellectual-property restrictions. But if it can just be called "liberation" ("liberate your data"?) then it could go at that entry. Equinox 22:43, 2 February 2018 (UTC)
Possibly the majority of the hits on Google Books are to "the Data Liberation Initiative", which is about Canada's effort to make data more freely available. Removing that and Google's own "Data Liberation Front", which is more along your lines, and it's a mixed bunch. We get something from American Demographics (1989): "The latest advances in microcomputer technology will enable even the smallest of companies to put census data to work. "Data liberation" is what Edward Spar, president of Market Statistics of New York City, calls it. Data liberation will provide opportunities not only for the businesses that use census..." Getting Started with Data Science: Making Sense of Data with Analytics (2015) also uses it in the sense of making data easier to get a hold of. I'm seeing more uses in the sense of "making data more freely available" than "freeing one's data from an online service", far more if we include "the Data Liberation Initiative". In any case, I just see "data" + "liberation".--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:16, 2 February 2018 (UTC)


This Russian verb is given five definitions, of which the last two are:

  • (computing, rare) to save (to write a file to a disk)
  • (computing) to burn (to write a file to an optical disc)

I assume the definitions are supposed to be different meanings, but I cannot see that these are different at all, just using a colloquial verb ("burn") in some cases. I'm also a Russian beginner, but when I (accidentally!) ended up using the Russian interface to edit at Commons, Записать was the verb used for "Save (edit)". So I wonder if this is really "rare"?? Imaginatorium (talk) 14:39, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

go amiss[edit]

I used the term, without realising there's no entry for it, usually used with "wouldn't", e.g. as shown here. What form should an entry take? DonnanZ (talk) 15:12, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

go amiss” at OneLook Dictionary Search. DCDuring (talk) 18:50, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes, probably go amiss, with redirects from not go amiss, would go amiss, would not go amiss, wouldn't go amiss. I do worry that when an expression is often used in the negative, with "not", and we lemmatize it in the positive, people who don't notice that (especially if they followed a redirect) may misunderstand, but I guess that can't be helped, except by a usage label or qualifier like "often in the negative". - -sche (discuss) 23:01, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
I've Yes check.svg Done a basic entry which of course can be played around with. I'll think about redirects later. Cheers. DonnanZ (talk) 00:11, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Great, I've added the redirects. Is the expression really only British, though, and not general English? - -sche (discuss) 00:28, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
(edit conflict) You may see nothing amiss, but we have a good number of idioms that consist of go, referring to a change of state + a descriptive adjective: go bad, go crazy, go wrong, go pear-shaped, go red, go blue, go native to which could be added go good, go green, go legal, go legit, go quiet, go silly. There's a variation with an adverbial tinge: go James Bond, go medieval, go postal, go Terminator, but it's all the same idea. On the one hand, these aren't all obvious, but, on the other hand, there are a lot of potential combinations. Chuck Entz (talk) 00:50, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
To simplify things, follow the lemmings. That way only more problematic cases reach this page. DCDuring (talk) 00:59, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Looking at OneLook coverage, they seem to agree with our inclusions, except go red and go blue. For the most part they agree with our exclusions as well, though they have go legit. DCDuring (talk) 04:42, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
I know what you (-sche) mean about the negative/positive redirect, but that seems in some way a search problem, not something that should change how we write entries. Equinox 04:49, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes, that's what I was worried about in the first place, the search problem. DonnanZ (talk) 10:49, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

wedded to[edit]

Which of our entries, in any, cover and allow me to make sense of the phrase "I'm not wedded to any particular theory"? Wed has a sense "to commit", but it's labelled rare and obsolete. Wedded only has the literal "joined in marriage" sense. Wedded to is a redlink. - -sche (discuss) 19:35, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

"To commit" doesn't seem obsolete or rare to me. The definition could be enhanced IMO as "To commit, as if by marriage" with a usage example like "I'm not wedded to this proposal; suggest an alternative."
However, “wedded to” at OneLook Dictionary Search shows that some OneLook dictionaries (legal (1), idiom (2), learner's (1)) have wedded to, though the learner's dictionary has just a redirect to wedded.
In contrast, “wedded” at OneLook Dictionary Search shows that many dictionaries have entries for wedded, though many are redirects to the verb. Some of the adjective entries don't have the figurative sense. 'Very|too wedded" are attestable in both marital and non-marital figurative use, so we could have an adjective entry. Not all, but most, usage of wedded as an adjective seems to have "to complements". DCDuring (talk) 23:51, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Thanks for the resources and suggestions. :) I have edited wed (which turns out to have also had a second "commit"-like sense, which I wedded to this sense), and wedded, and redirected wedded to to wedded. - -sche (discuss) 01:24, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Irish aisling: verb or not?[edit]

Wiktionary says Irish aisling is dream both as a noun and as a verb. However, this dictionary doesn't give it as a verb and Rachel Anderson on Quora stated that «aisling is not a verb». Can we verify it is a verb, or should we remove the verb part of the entry? MGorrone (talk) 21:42, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

O Donaill 1977 claimed that it was a verb in a literary register. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 22:38, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
I see what look like hits for the verb form aislingthe: google books:"aislingthe". - -sche (discuss) 22:57, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Dineen also gives it as a verb, but it does seem to be extremely rare. I can't find any unambiguous verbal uses at the Historical Irish Corpus (where I would expect to find it if it were common in the literary register); the Dictionary of the Irish Language gives a single cite from an early translation of the Bible. As for aislingthe, it can also be a form of the noun (see the noun entry at DIL). —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 08:10, 4 February 2018 (UTC)


See Citations:valetin. Should this have an English entry? It seems to exist exclusively as a translation of 凡爾丁. DTLHS (talk) 03:54, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

I don't see why not; it seems not much different than entries for the names of culture-specific food dishes or sometimes other things like ranks/titles that are not infrequently referred to using borrowed/calqued terms not used to refer to anything else. - -sche (discuss) 16:57, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
@Wyang, can you clarify the definition of 凡爾丁 any? Presumably that would help us figure out how valetin should be defined. - -sche (discuss) 18:00, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
@-sche I have expanded the definition of 凡爾丁. I hope that helps! By the way, it would be fantastic if someone can figure out the source via some detective work. I now think it could even be the name of some western person who invented this fabric, since no word seems to exist. Wyang (talk) 23:49, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes, this is definitely a chicken-and-egg problem: the Chinese looks like a transliteration of a non-Chinese word/name, but the only attestation outside of Chinese seems to be translations of the Chinese. My guess is that we're looking at a misreading of some similar term. So far I've found valentine and veletine, which, however, seem to be silk rather than wool. Then again, this page seems to say valentine. At any rate, I asked for help at Wikipedia (see w:Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Textile_Arts#Valitine/Valetin/Valitin)- perhaps something will come of that. Chuck Entz (talk) 02:50, 5 February 2018 (UTC)


The disambiguation page for the hiragana rendition of ぼうし shows 16 different kanji renditions, but no actual definitions that would differentiate them, and most of them don't even have a page. How can this be amended? AstroVulpes (talk) 12:26, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

I glossed several, but I don't know of Japanese words 傍視, 坊市 (maybe town or market?), 暴死 (probably violent death or sudden death), 茅茨, 謀士, or 鋩子. Cnilep (talk) 01:56, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
Likewise at ほうし, I don't know 芳姿, 放氏, 蓬矢, 鋒矢, or 褒賜. Cnilep (talk) 02:19, 6 February 2018 (UTC)


Yuk! Is that the predominant form? The two Os should be pronounced separately, even though they sound the same. I certainly won't be putting any translations here. DonnanZ (talk) 16:36, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Ngrams suggests "co-owner" is markedly more common; I've swapped which one is the lemma and which one is the alt form. - -sche (discuss) 16:53, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Much better. Thanks! DonnanZ (talk) 17:00, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
The New Yorker would doubtless spell it coöwner. I think Condé Nast and David Remnick must own stock in a dieresis factory. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 17:32, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
And then there's coown... DonnanZ (talk) 19:31, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

pronunciation of oïl[edit]

We have ɔjl as the French pronunciation of "langue d'oïl", but https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langue_d%27oïl#cite_note-1 claims that's Franglais. --Espoo (talk) 20:58, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

FWIW fr.Wikt has \ɔjl\ but also mentions \wi\. - -sche (discuss) 23:29, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Wouldn't Ofr oil also be pronounced /ɔjl/ ? What then, makes oïl, with diareses, distinct ? Not sure but I would imagine /ɔˈil/ would be a reasonable candidate Leasnam (talk) 02:53, 5 February 2018 (UTC)


Is this really, as the entry claims, sometimes pronounced /mæk.əˈdoʊ.ni.ə/? Is that pronunciation limited to the "ancient Greek region" sense? - -sche (discuss) 22:10, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Removed. - -sche (discuss) 17:43, 9 February 2018 (UTC)


Despite what looks like a change from its etymological origin, is it correct to label تیراژه as a misspelling if it's a form listed in a dictionary?[23] Thanks. Biosthmors (talk) 22:36, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

I'm going to go ahead and remove the mention that تیراژه is a misspelling. If I'm mistaken please revert. Biosthmors (talk) 14:19, 5 February 2018 (UTC)

भोः bhoḥ[edit]

I don't know any Sanskrit. Is it possible to use this Sanskrit word to express respect, with a meaning similar to reverend, venerable... ? Lmaltier (talk) 06:46, 5 February 2018 (UTC)

It's the vocative form of a second-person pronoun that can be used to show respect, but I reckon the meaning would be more like "Sir/Lord So-and-so" when speaking to someone. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 16:36, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
Thank you. Lmaltier (talk) 08:24, 10 February 2018 (UTC)


Aren't some of the usexes a bit OTT (i.e. borderline)? DonnanZ (talk) 00:54, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

If there is no response I will remove them all. DonnanZ (talk) 09:50, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

It's Dick Laurent (now known as Qehath). We generally leave them on vulgar words, but you can remove them if you like. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 16:35, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done. If I find them potentially offensive no doubt other users would too. DonnanZ (talk) 17:58, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

Off the immediate topic, but on the subject of vulgar Turkish words starting with sik-, I am reminded of the usage note I had to write for sikişmek, warning that you may literally die if you confuse this word and sıkışmak. I am also reminded that our Turkish conjugation templates are still not yet complete enough to list the precise forms that most famously got mixed up. - -sche (discuss) 05:21, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

The funny thing is I wasn't even looking for Turkish, but for any Low German reflexive pronouns (similar to German sich), but drew a blank. DonnanZ (talk) 12:32, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
@Donnanz: I've added the Low German pronoun now. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 13:24, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
I'm not sure whether it goes back to Middle Low German, probably does if it comes from Old Saxon, but that's great, thanks. DonnanZ (talk) 13:38, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
I'm sure it does, I just didn't bother listing that step. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 13:55, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
Yeah, it can be a grey area, a lot of words in the Scandivanian languages come from Middle Low German or Low German, and dictionaries don't always specify which, perhaps they don't know precisely either. DonnanZ (talk) 14:41, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
Scandinavian loanwords from Low German were probably almost all borrowed during the era of the Hanseatic League, which would make it Middle Low German. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 15:02, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
Probably. The Norwegian dictionary we use never mentions Middle Low German, only Low German, so I often refer to the DDO to see what they have to say. DonnanZ (talk) 15:22, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

Seaxa (Old English pronunciation)[edit]

This Old English pronunciation was added by @Beognoth, and I formatted the IPA with a template. I, however, cannot vouch for its accuracy. I just want to make sure it is correct. Cnilep (talk) 01:31, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

@Cnilep: Corrected it. — Eru·tuon 01:54, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

to be sure[edit]

some info. regarding the apparent infinite structure of to be sure? Thanks--Backinstadiums (talk) 17:23, 5 February 2018 (UTC)

This is one of a small group of expressions of the form to be + [ADJ] used as sentence adverbs. Adjectives that are fairly common in this sentence-adverb pattern include honest, frank, fair, precise, exact, clear, complete, kind, and brief. The meaning of most of these is transparent, once one recognizes how sentence adverbs work. Some, but not all, are synonymous as sentence adverbs with corresponding -ly adverbs (eg, honestly, frankly, clearly, briefly). To be sure is probably the least transparent of all of these. An infinitive structure can occur in other sentence adverbials without to be, for example, the idiom not to put too fine a point on it and expressions like to put it mildly, to clarify. I don't think that this is truly lexical rather than grammatical information. DCDuring (talk) 05:42, 6 February 2018 (UTC)


"to be merely afraid that" is its definition a natural English sentence? Even so, can merely be left out? --Backinstadiums (talk) 19:49, 6 February 2018 (UTC)


Can sb. confirm the pronunciation with third tone for the verb, yet fourth tone for the noun ? If so, it should be specified at --Backinstadiums (talk) 16:41, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

I don't think that's the case. — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 19:53, 13 February 2018 (UTC)

I need a guide[edit]

I have noticed that the phrase I need a guide was deleted in March 2017 by Daniel Carrero but I failed to find any archived RfD discussion. Although the English phrase was deleted, its equivalents in other languages were kept, such as potřebuji průvodce or ich brauche einen Fremdenführer. It was also kept in the Appendix:English phrasebook/Travel. I believe the phrase should not have been deleted and suggest recovering. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 10:00, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

Yana page: English Noun actually is Tibetan/Sanskrit/Pali not English[edit]


Hi was interested because the page for Yana says it is an English word, which is not the case

"(Buddhism) Any of the vehicles of Buddhist or Tantric practice."

Then three quoted related terms

Related terms Hinayana Mahayana Vajrayana

To have these listed in English is inaccurate, they are not English words


It's not a native English word, no, but it is used in English, and that makes it an English word, just like yoga and Buddha and any other number of Sanskrit borrowings. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 15:18, 11 February 2018 (UTC)


(and various other edits by

Specifically, this revision does not appear to be accurate. There is contemporary informal use of Scotch to refer to the people of Scotland, and to both Scotch Gaelic and Scots, however incorrect/inappropriate that use may be. My question is basically how far is povioring to be ignored, as the individual appears to be a valuable contributor? - Amgine/ t·e 16:53, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

Evidence from N-Grams? DCDuring (talk) 17:11, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
For "set" phrases in which Scots/Scotch/Scottish might occur, it seems that Scotch persists, especially in the US. Scotch-Irish is more popular than Scots-Irish The matter of Scotch-Irish is discussed at length here. Scotch pine, Scotch broom, Scotch woodcock are other examples, but there are many. Finding usage of the attributives outside set phrases is more time-consuming, but may be worth while for Wiktionary. DCDuring (talk) 17:38, 8 February 2018 (UTC)


Is it nonstandard and considered offensive in some communities? Sure, Somali is more common but is the label correct? --Robbie SWE (talk) 19:28, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

There are dozens of threads on forums where Somalis describe the term as incorrect; here is one example: [24]. If you want to hear a Somali specifically calling the term offensive, well, here is an example in this video at 1 hour 15 minutes where he specifically describes it as offensive: [25]. Any offensive term cannot be tagged as standard. 19:52, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
Standard for whom? Somali is an ethnic group, which makes up 85% of the population of Somalia, but 15% of people living there are not of that ethnic group. By what term should they be described as "non-Somali citizen of Somalia" ? - Amgine/ t·e 21:55, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
That's hardly unique to Somalia. Not all French citizens are ethnically French; not all German citizens are ethnically German; not all Russian citizens are ethnically Russian, and so forth. It's an ambiguity we have to live with for a very large number of demonyms. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 22:05, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes, I expect citizens of the d:United Kingdom of Scottish, Welsh, and Irish extraction dislike being described there as British. The point being that Somalian is more inclusive than Somali, and appears to me to be in standard use at least in North American and possibly other outside-of-Somalia contexts. - Amgine/ t·e 22:20, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
Actually the term "Somalian" is more exclusive than "Somali". Take for instance inhabitants of Somaliland who may feel left out by the usage of that term. 22:33, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
Where Somaliland is viewed as a sovereign state, the citizens would not be Somalian. Where it is viewed otherwise, they would be. (But I have to admit "Somalilander" is not beautiful in my ear.) - Amgine/ t·e 22:42, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
The attractiveness of Somali over Somalian in a volatile part of the world is that the former doesn't carry the same political overtones as the latter. 22:47, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
So there is a standard freighted meaning to the use of Somalian, presumably a nationalist point of view, which is not present in Somali? Perhaps that should be mentioned in a usage note? - Amgine/ t·e 22:54, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
In northern Somalia, I would say yes, not necessarily in central or southern Somalia though. 23:07, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
As for the usage note, that's up to you. 23:25, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
FWIW the AP stylebook agrees that it's Somali not Somalian. - -sche (discuss) 17:42, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
NYTimes disagrees, and uses both depending on context. Which is neither here nor there since the question seems to be "should Wiktionary take a position rather than describe use?" I would err on descriptive, rather than prescriptive. - Amgine/ t·e 17:55, 9 February 2018 (UTC)

Usage examples of sacre: untranslated Middle English[edit]

I visited sacre and there is at least one usage example in ME with no translation. Most of it is understandable, but there is "hondis" which I cannot fathom, and which doesn't have its own Wiktionary entry. Should we not add a translation? And about that, what does hondis mean? (Also, IIRC this example is in the "English" section, and if that is the case it should at least be moved to the ME section.

Yes, you should add a translation if you are able to. Feel free to move any Middle English content you find to its own Middle English entry, assuming one exists. DTLHS (talk) 20:22, 8 February 2018 (UTC)
Middle English hondis means "hands"; the Vulgate says cunctorum consecrabis manus (you will sanctify the hands of all). —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 20:36, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

pearl necklace[edit]

It's possible that all the translations for the second sense need to be checked (NSFW image in Wikipedia link), how can that be done? Just by pinging those who speak the relevant languages? Please also see the question I raised about the Chinese translation at RFV. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 23:34, 8 February 2018 (UTC)

All batch-added by User:IvanScrooge98. Removed the Chinese translation. Wyang (talk) 03:56, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Atitarev Please could you check the Russian and Ukrainian. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 12:58, 9 February 2018 (UTC) Also @Alexander Mikhalenko.
@Kaixinguo~enwiktionary: They are correct but the term is an SoP and should be rfd-ed. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 13:06, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Atitarev: Thanks, but do you mean SoP in English or in other languages? Also, could you vouch for the Belarusian as well? Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 13:17, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Kaixinguo~enwiktionary: English and other languages are SoP. The Belarusian is correct but the entry is still a waste, even if it was me who added the Russian translation in diff in 2012. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 13:27, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Atitarev: OK, I see you have now removed all the translations and requested deletion. I don't mind, I was only trying to help because I noticed the Chinese and Persian were wrong. But now I have really wasted my time trying to sort this out. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 13:52, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
Well, I think I can safely say that my attempts to edit outside of Persian have been a total disaster and a total waste of time. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 14:08, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Kaixinguo~enwiktionary: I have removed only but the 2nd section of translations, which were an exact copy of the first, as if the stupid sense exists in all languages. If the entry survives the rfd, the translations will stay. Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 19:32, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@Eirikr, Suzukaze-c Please could you check the Japanese. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 13:11, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
It's marked del, but for reference -- Shogakukan's J→E dictionary lists 真珠ネックレス (shinju no nekkuresu, literally, pearl + (possessive particle) + necklace) as a usage example in the entry for pearl. Note that this is SOP in Japanese and the entry should probably link separately to the constituent parts. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 17:26, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@IvanScrooge98 Please could you check the Italian. Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 12:59, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes, the Italian is fine. Sorry for some of my additions. [ˌiˑvã̠n̪ˑˈs̪kr̺ud͡ʒʔˌn̺ovã̠n̪ˑˈt̪ɔ̟t̪ːo] (parla con me) 13:04, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
@IvanScrooge98: Why? Don't be sorry :) Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 13:18, 9 February 2018 (UTC)

Because User:Dan_Polansky isn't Polish, I can't find anyone to look at the Polish. The only names I recognise from Category:User pl-N etc. have not been not active recently. Can anyone think of anyone? Kaixinguo~enwiktionary (talk) 13:24, 9 February 2018 (UTC)

up a storm[edit]

Adverb as part of speech is misleading here. It's not talk + up a storm (like bark up a tree); it's talk up + a storm. Since other verbs than talk can be used, I don't know what to call this if not adverb, though. Equinox 08:11, 9 February 2018 (UTC)

There is no definition of storm that would be substitutable and yield the meaning of, say, "preach up a storm". There is also no phrasal verb preach up, though I'm sure some would want to add one. I also don't think that talk up + a storm is the right analysis. Talking up a storm in that sense is what American broadcast weather forecasters do to make people come back to their next appearance. Perhaps up a storm might best be considered a prepositional phrase. DCDuring (talk) 08:57, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
It is also not true that it is felicitous to use up a storm with any intransitive verb. For one thing, it usually doesn't seem right with verbs that do have a common associated phrasal verb with up, eg. *"speak up a storm", *"drive up a storm". *"think up a storm". But it does work with a great variety of verbs. DCDuring (talk) 09:25, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
I just tried a few random ones I thought up ("shopping up a storm", "sang up a storm", "dancing up a storm", "ate up a storm") and all are well evidenced in GBooks. To me the phrase feels syntactically comparable to whipping up (swiftly producing). Could be wrong; it's not one I use much. Equinox 09:45, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
I've heard it on TV shows in US, especially those in rural/Western settings. Sadly, I don't yet own the appropriate volume of DARE. I think there are so many verbs with which up a storm is acceptable that it needs its own entry. Though I can't yet improve on our entry or that of MWOnline (Those copycats!), I think there is room for improvement, perhaps reflecting the range of verbs with which it does not work or perhaps just reworded. DCDuring (talk) 13:05, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
Maybe the verbs are just those involving activities that can be intensified (eg, study, read, cook, write, knit, but not *open, *close, *dine, *glue), but aren't inherently intense (eg, *rage, *electrify, *sprint, *slice). DCDuring (talk) 13:13, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
Who's good with grammatical analysis? I appreciate the theorising above (and thanks for responding to my post) but I would like a bit more, uh, Chomskyan aboreal bitching, who knows. Equinox 22:20, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
aboreal? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 22:27, 9 February 2018 (UTC)
It's not really any part of speech, since it takes part of one node in the structure and joins it with another node. This is really a substitutable pattern along the lines of a snowclone ([VERB up] [a storm]). Chuck Entz (talk) 01:11, 10 February 2018 (UTC)
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions has this (under its own headword, "up a storm"), labelled "mod.", the same 'part of speech' as "on the road", "in one's blood" and "in the black". The Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary defines "cook/dance/talk, etc. up a storm" as "idioms" under the headword storm. MacMillan also has it as "up a storm", as a phrase. I think the entry as it stands now looks OK. Redirects from common verbs like [[talk up a storm]] would probably be good for improving search-findability. - -sche (discuss) 04:33, 10 February 2018 (UTC)


Any idea how the colours at Appendix:Colors are assigned? I believe mignonette and reseda are synonymous, but they are given different values at Appendix:Colors. — SGconlaw (talk) 14:22, 10 February 2018 (UTC)

Dutchman (and similar demonyms)[edit]

The definition for Dutchman currently specifies only a man (which can be assumed to mean an adult male), but many people, including Wiktionary's own list in Appendix:Countries of the world use the word for a person (generally) of the Netherlands. I think that the definition of Dutchman (and some words like it) should include the fact the word has often been used for any gender or age (plus a usage note). The entry for -man uses the phrase "implied male" - but for some demonyms the implication is maybe weaker than others - e.g. when the -person alternative is uncommon, and implications have changed with time. Perhaps for some words two usage notes are needed: one for readers (what was probably meant when it was written?) and one for writers (what might people assume you mean if you use this word today?).

Possibly also helpful: another column in Appendix:Countries of the world for usage notes where there may be negative reactions from using certain words - e.g. if a country's status is disputed, if a word is ambiguous (e.g. American), if two words are used interchangeably in English when they shouldn't be (e.g. Holland and the Netherlands), as well as the gender-specific implication. It could even include the demonym the people of the country prefer to use for themselves in their own language - that would be helpful. Maitchy (talk) 20:57, 11 February 2018 (UTC)

Please check my edit in page выделенный (ru)[edit]

Could you, please, check my edit? I'm not sure about syntax in case when we have link to another article. --Важнов Алексей Геннадьевич (talk) 05:33, 13 February 2018 (UTC)

That's fine. For non-English entries, we usually write glosses in lower case, with no period/full stop at the end; for English entries, we usually write definitions beginning with an upper-case letter and with a period/full stop at the end. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 18:40, 13 February 2018 (UTC)
(Why, actually? Shouldn't all definitions regardless of the entry language be a proper sentence, beginning with a capital letter and ending with a full stop? — SGconlaw (talk) 03:39, 14 February 2018 (UTC))
A sentence is a logical assertion, so what would assertion would there be in a definition of "banana"? Actually definition is normally a phrase, being an equivalent of the word being defined ("a tropical fruit in the shape of a crescent moon"). Preceding this with "This word means..." and adding a full stop makes it into a sentence, but wastes paper. Checking the nearest "real" dictionary (SOED 3rd ed.) it does start with a capital letter and end with a full stop, but the beginning is a phrase, followed by a sentence. ("A tree (Musa sapientum) cultivated largely in tropical countries; it grows to a height of 20 feet 1697.") Hmm, not exactly normal sentence construction... Imaginatorium (talk) 05:02, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
English entries have definitions (Starting with a capital, ending with a dot.); foreign-language entries usually have glosses (lowercase, no dot). - -sche (discuss) 22:24, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

translation hub for look out! watch out! careful![edit]

Don't we have one already? I cannot find it. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:33, 13 February 2018 (UTC)


Are the any rules (like WT:CFI rules) for letters?
How is the sense

a Modern Greek ("Greek", code el) letter? - 00:00, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

This is another entry (I was just about to post about a different one) where the senses haven't been substantially updated in a decade and it shows. They date to a time when editors here sometimes treated Ancient Greek as Greek, especially in cases like this. The sense should be moved to an Ancient Greek section, I think. - -sche (discuss) 00:20, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
I'd move it to a Greek ("Ancient Greek", code grc) entry - but knowing how some rollbackers sometimes do react, I was asking for rules and thinking of challenging it at WT:RFVN or WT:RFD. - 03:06, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
I've given it a shot. mellohi! (僕の乖離) 19:32, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
Thanks. - 23:11, 14 February 2018 (UTC)


I saw our weirdly split definitions and suspected this was another entry from a decade ago, when entries often used multiple definition lines to cover one sense from different angles. Sure enough, it is. It's particularly odd one sense is labelled 'derogatory' but the other isn't. I don't think the split is made in practice, and other dictionaries have only one sense, which combines these two. I suggest rewriting it to have one sense, perhaps along the lines of "One who has obstinate ideas about race, religion, gender, politics, etc, and is intolerant of people with different ideas or of different races, religions, genders, political factions, etc." Thoughts/ criticism/ suggestions for improvement? - -sche (discuss) 00:22, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

The two senses refer to the same thing. I don't think a "derogatory" tag is necessary for the same reason we don't have one at ugly. The second half of your definition looks good to me; I feel like "obstinate" is just a connotation. Ultimateria (talk) 12:48, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
I've edited the entry. FWIW, I was only familiar with the second half of the definition myself, but almost every other dictionary I looked at included verbiage to the effect of the first half, so I retained it (from sense 1 of our weirdly split entry); apparently it is a thing that the term means...? - -sche (discuss) 22:22, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

racial supremacy[edit]

Grammatically (changing the references to sneetches to references to human races), "white supremacy" can be used in all of the ways that this entry's usexes show "racial supremacy" being used, yet [[white supremacy]] gets by with only one sense, whereas this entry has four. Does this entry have over-many senses, or do "white supremacy", "black supremacy", "Arab supremacy" (and "German supremacy" and other supremacies anyone wants to add) need more senses? Or should the terms just be RFDed again as obvious SOPs? They passed, but Talk:Jewish supremacy failed. - -sche (discuss) 00:28, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

Definitely take it down to one sense, and then RFD that one sense. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 00:34, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
It seems bad form (open to accusations of dishonesty) to redefine an entry and then RFD it; I'll just RFD it. It can be cleaned up if kept. - -sche (discuss) 05:27, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
There are certain topics (race, feminism, any kind of politics seem to be among them) where most people just go blind and spazz. Those entries end up being blind spazz entries. We should be merciless in cutting them down. Equinox 01:40, 14 February 2018 (UTC)


  • By Wiktionary:About Middle English ("between 1150 and 1500") the cite from 1554 would be Modern English. Is it Middle or Modern English?
  • The reference and the talk page hint that it's Middle Scots. Is it English or Scots? (Maybe compare with the discussion entitled "Middle Scots" below.)

- 03:06, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

1554 is definitely too late to be Middle English (a few people have sometimes pushed for a different chageover date than 1500, but generally an earlier one, 1470). - -sche (discuss) 04:22, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
I've changed the citation and Reference Leasnam (talk) 05:15, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
Thanks. - 23:11, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

Middle Scots[edit]

How's Middle Scots treated at wiktionary?

  • Scots Dauid has a label "Middle Scots" implying that Middle Scots and Modern Scots form a single language Scots at Wiktionary. Compared with other languages (Old English, Middle English, English; Old High German, Middle High German, German; Old Dutch, Middle Dutch, Dutch; ...) that seems unusual and strange.
  • Category:Middle Scots language got deleted with the reason "no such language - It is really a local variant of Middle English - Scots is a language now in its own right". By wikipedia that doesn't fit, compare en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_Scots : "Middle Scots ... from 1450 to 1700", with Wiktionary:About Middle English: "Middle English ... between 1150 and 1500."

- 03:06, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

Scots developed out of Middle English, so Scots is not as old as English. Old Scots corresponds roughly to late Middle English, and Middle Scots roughly aligns to Early Modern English. Since we don't separate Early Modern English from Modern English, I don't see a need to do the same with Middle Scots and Modern Scots. Leasnam (talk) 05:07, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
Having read w:History of the Scots language, I would suggest treating Scots words from before 1100 as Northumbrian Old English, those from 1100 to 1450 (i.e. Early Scots) as Scottish Middle English (which can be a subcategory of Regional Middle English), and those from 1450 to 1700 (i.e. Middle Scots) as Scots archaic terms or Scots terms with archaic senses. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 11:13, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
Okay. Thanks. - 23:11, 14 February 2018 (UTC)


Is the use of nay as an interjection really archaic? Or is it dated/dialectal? Its ngram shows a decline similar to its coordinate term yea, which is labelled as dated.

Anecdotally, I use nay frequently as an informal interjection equivalent to no, however I may be just applying English phonology to German nee, as I tag-switch between English and German a lot. As a native (American) English speaker, I'd be more taken aback by lo, also an archaism, or alas, which is not labelled archaich or dated. – Gormflaith (talk) 17:49, 14 February 2018 (UTC)

If you plot it out to 2018, it shows a slight increase in all three terms [[26]]. Additionally, nay is far more common than nope and even yep, something I found very surprising Leasnam (talk) 22:52, 14 February 2018 (UTC)
Maybe reprints distort the picture if they're included. Crom daba (talk) 00:23, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

Missing sense of flare?[edit]

A flare at an oil refinery. [27]. DonnanZ (talk) 01:06, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

It does look like we're missing the noun sense.
The transitive verb sense in the linked article appears to be covered by sense 4: "To cause to burn." ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 01:10, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
Also, sense 5 of the noun is hardly different from sense 1. I would group any flame-related senses and all the widening senses. I suppose the photography sense is close to the flame senses. DCDuring (talk) 02:27, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
I have added it as sense 8 (can be revised), but maybe some grouping can be done as DCDuring suggests. Found an image too, which can be downsized if necessary. DonnanZ (talk) 10:00, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
If you look in Wikipedia at lens flare, it's described as a scattering of light. DonnanZ (talk) 10:54, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

megadontia, macrodontia, megalodontia[edit]

Do these terms mean the same thing, or are there differences in terms of what they refer to? If they mean the same thing, which one is the most common one? — justin(r)leung (t...) | c=› } 06:23, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

  • Copy pasting the title of this section into the Google ngram viewer shows that macrodontia is much more common than megadontia, and that megalodontia is unused. SemperBlotto (talk) 06:27, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
    • It seems to me that megadontia is mainly a medical term, whereas macrodontia is also used in anthropological contexts. Ƿidsiþ 06:18, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

investment and vestment[edit]

Currently we claim at investment that "that with which anyone is invested" means vestment, but this is not reflected at vestment. Notably, OED does not have this sense. Any ideas? ---> Tooironic (talk) 08:17, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

I don't find that sense at “vestment” at OneLook Dictionary Search or vestment in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911. DCDuring (talk) 14:53, 15 February 2018 (UTC)


Another call for help, pretty urgent: we are missing an adverb, noun and verb sense for posh currently listed in the OED. Anyone? ---> Tooironic (talk) 13:50, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

Probably "(UK) in a manner associated with the upper class" She talks posh, but she's from Brixton. DCDuring (talk) 14:57, 15 February 2018 (UTC)


I'm talking about a sense that goes something like this:

  1. Term of affection used in some romantic or sexual relationships that suggests that the woman being called this is is the nurturer of the other.

This is not a well-worded definition, but I hope you guys get the idea. It involves the sort of rare MDLB (mommy dom/little boy) or even rarer MDLG (mommy dom/little girl) fetishism/lifestyle, which I admittedly happen to be into (the term is modeled after DDLG, in which the male partner is called "daddy"). Should we have a definition for this, or is it too related to the original definition? Last time I looked for citations for the abbreviation MDLB, I couldn't find enough... Any takers? PseudoSkull (talk) 21:00, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

If it's used in roleplay, I wouldn't think it was a different sense; someone could also roleplay a teacher-student thing and call their partner "professor", without that being a different sense. OTOH, if it's become as general as the sexual sense of daddy (which seems to be used outside of roleplay) and we can find citations of it, it probably has as much merit as the sexual sense that's currently in that entry. This seems somewhat related (topically, not etymologically) to little#Noun (currently labelled "BDSM", but is ageplay restricted to BDSM?). - -sche (discuss) 22:17, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

play dumb[edit]

Did the second (and now more common) meaning derive from a misunderstanding/reinterpretation of the first meaning, going into it with the perspective that dumb meant "foolish, ignorant"? Tharthan (talk) 22:01, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

I would think it was another instance of play + adjective, like "play coy [with]". (Googling even finds some hits for "play ignorant".) - -sche (discuss) 22:20, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
It may have evolved as the meaning of dumb evolved, first from meaning "unable to speak" to (under German influence) "not smart, stupid" Leasnam (talk) 22:26, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
I agree, in my view it's a simple parallelism. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:30, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

Is play possum a stative verb? Is "possum" a direct object (as in "play tennis"), or is it a predicative? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:30, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

Play possum, as an idiom, is not a good model for 'normal' grammar. One can't play vulture, for example.
There are numerous adjectives that form common collocations with play in addition to those already mentioned: dead*, dirty*, fair*, false, ignorant, innocent, nice*, rough*, safe*, smart, and fast and loose* and hard to get*. I don't think that most of these can be considered adverbs. The ones marked with "*" might form an idiom with play, but I don't think so. For example, they accept adjective-modifying adverbs like very, too, a bit, kinda etc., so they fail to be set phrases, sensu stricto.
My argument would be that the purported "misunderstanding/reinterpretation" goes back to dumb. The entry for “dumb” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2018. has Old High German thumb, but not many cognates, meaning both "mute" and "stupid". Modern English use of dumb in the "stupid" sense apparently dates from the early 19th century. It would be interesting to know whether it originated in the US or the UK, the US having a significant minority of German speakers at the time. DCDuring (talk) 15:14, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
One can play the fool, play the goat, and rarely play pigeon...these constructs remind me of similar formations using act (e.g. act chicken). As far as play possum is concerned, I think it's modelled on play dead (?) Leasnam (talk) 16:44, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Grammatically, the play + ([DET) [NOUN] construction and the play + [ADJ] contructions (which started the discussion) should be looked at separately.
To me play possum seems like a reduction of something like "play a/the possum" unless Possum is considered by the speaker to be a character like Br'er Rabbit. In any event I think it may be one of the very few expressions of this type, involving play, that is a true idiom. DCDuring (talk) 19:00, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Right. I can't think of any other animal that plays dead, 'cept'n a possum. Leasnam (talk) 20:04, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

I am tryiing to add a new word uberlate[edit]


(verb) : being late for a appointment or commitment which forces you to call a Uber or lyft. Uberlate

Why can I get this word addded

First you should understand the difference between verbs and adjectives. Then read WT:CFI and provide evidence of the word's use. DTLHS (talk) 02:08, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

to get old[edit]

In the sense of "to get boring, to get repetitive". Is that entry worthy? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:45, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

old adj sense 5 uses "getting old" in the example. Equinox 13:47, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Whoops, small oversight. Thanks. Is it used in that sense outside of "to get old", though? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 13:49, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
It can be (e.g. from the Web: "Apologise, say the bitching has grown old and agree to all behave in kinder, less judgemental ways in future"). "Get old" is a common collocation, but then so is "get old fast". Equinox 15:16, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Also, from the web:
"the initial hiding was awesome, it just became old with repetition."
"Intelligent swords had additional powers, but even that could seem old after a while."
"even great beats can start to sound old after a while." DCDuring (talk) 15:37, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

Ok, thanks to you both. No need for a new entry. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 16:00, 16 February 2018 (UTC)


I just created this entry, but I immediately realized I may have created a SoP page, as I think 去 is quite productive; I can say 去殼, 去核, 去死皮/去角質, 去斑, 去黑頭. So is it a SoP? Dokurrat (talk) 16:32, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

hopeless romantic[edit]

Originally I added this entry to WT:REE (I need to remove it actually), but I decided that the definition I had in mind was at least logical, especially for hopeless + romantic.

PUC and I are pretty sure this is a set phrase, as mentioned on the talk page, but unsure if it has any idiomatic meaning beyond the definition that's currently there as of this post. Lots of the web definitions seemed weird to me, seeming to describe mostly about what they think a "hopeless romantic" tends to be like in personality beyond just the basic definition of what a hopeless romantic is; even the one from Urban Dictionary seemed to do this. I'm pinging @Per utramque cavernam and @suzukaze-c in this post. Any other ideas on what to do with this entry are appreciated. PseudoSkull (talk) 16:40, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

It's not obvious to me that it's a set phrase, sensu stricto: "hopeless old romantic", "hopeless young romantic", "hopeless charming romantic", "hopeless bygone-age romantic", "hopeless ridiculous/pathetic romantic". As a common collocation it probably merits being included in usage examples at both [[hopeless]] and [[romantic]]. DCDuring (talk) 17:04, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
I think we are missin: g a sense of hopeless: "incurable", "irremediable" which fits with "romantic" in this collocation because being romantic is metaphorically a disease. In that sense one can be a hopeless idiot/fool/failure/duffer/dilettante/collector/second-rater/felon/truant/bibliophile, all of which are metaphorically diseases in the collocation. DCDuring (talk) 17:13, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Ya can be lots of hopeless things: it isn't really about hope, except in a vague "there's no hope for him to stop being an X!" way (see DCDuring's comments); rather similar perhaps to the slang "sad", he's sad or a "sad case", he cannot be cured from being a nerd. This topic reminds me of unrequited love which I swear passed an RFD, but apparently not -- I'm even querying this long ago on the talk page -- but there was something like this which was kept and shouldn't have been. Equinox 19:49, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
@Equinox Could you be thinking of unconditional love, which failed an RFD? PseudoSkull (talk) 20:04, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Hmm, I really could have sworn that the one I'm talking about survived. So I don't think it's that. But it's a very close topic and you could conceivably be right. Equinox 20:47, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
incurable romantic? secret admirer? :) -- Curious (talk) 21:00, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Ahah, well done. The RFD of incurable romantic dates back to February 2009, a few months before Equinox's post on the talk page of unrequited love (July 2009), so maybe he was thinking of that? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 21:05, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes! Sorry this is such a deep (indentation-wise) "derail" but that's the one. Equinox 22:17, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
Well, I don't know now. hopeless romantic and these are definitely common collocations, but are they entry worthy? Maybe not. (PseudoSkull is gonna hate me.) --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 22:26, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
It was once suggested that we could use a separate namespace for common collocations. That might be a tremendous help in doing definitions that surpass those in the other online dictionaries. The managing editor of Collins described how their lexicographers used such collocations from their COBUILD database to infer meanings, grouping the collocations by common elements. Thus, the predicate uses of hopeless might be separated from the attributive and the various nouns that appear with hopeless could be further grouped, eg, situation and similar nouns would be a cluster that generated one definition (or more); idiot/fool/failure might be another cluster; etc. Collins collocations. Collins used a KWIC format for the collocations. Does anyone else see the appeal of this? It would be a key element of a "lexicographer's workbench", especially useful for highly polysemic English words, but also, probably, for combining closely related definitions. DCDuring (talk) 23:06, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
OED does it, and I would have thought they are the gold standard for English dictionaries, HAHA! I just looked up gold standard and it actually says that in the usage example (we shouldn't use brand names in usexes, can we change it?). However, we don't have any particular mechanism for "common collocations". Some entries do have lists of them (sorry, I don't have one off the top of my head, but many major words have those lists). If this was something that was raised at work I would immediately demand a requirements meeting: who wants them, why, what will they do with them, what do we need to provide? I can definitely see some use (primarily for foreign learners? DCD's comments above are useful) but they do fall a little outside of merely defining a word, and they are something we would need to keep up to date over time (and surely we should preserve the history of previous common collocations). Wow I've derailed this discussion twice! A topic to break out, though? Equinox 23:54, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
The topic has to go to BP, I suppose, because this is supposed to be "A place to ask for help on finding quotations, etymologies, or other information about particular words." DCDuring (talk) 00:08, 17 February 2018 (UTC)


antimicrobicide - OneLook - Google "antimicrobicide" (BooksGroupsScholar)

Not quite sure how to write this entry - a strange word that appears to be a 'mis-form' of microbicide in many uses, even in a Nature (Publishing Group) publication:

Findings of a randomized phase III clinical trial demonstrate that a vaginally-applied topical gel containing the antimicrobicide tenofovir can prevent the transmission of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), when used pericoitally.

Wyang (talk) 05:23, 17 February 2018 (UTC)

  • I've added an initial entry. Feel free to improve or delete as appropriate. SemperBlotto (talk) 06:12, 17 February 2018 (UTC)
    • Looks good, thanks. (I think it might be good to have a template for these misconstrued (?) words.) Wyang (talk) 06:24, 17 February 2018 (UTC)
Antimicrobicide is misconstructed by the speaker/author, I think. It is based, possibly on misconstrual by the speaker/author of the meaning of the morphemes anti- and -cide.
It's not a misspelling, IMO, of either antimicrobial biocide or microbicide. It seems to me to be constructed as an imperfect blend of antimicrobial and microbicide, without interference from thought about the alternative construction anti- + microbicide or the double dose of death in anti- and -cide. It could be defined as "(nonstandard) An antimicriobial; a microbicide". DCDuring (talk) 15:52, 17 February 2018 (UTC)
@Wyang: We have {{misconstruction of}}, used for example in evolutionary stable strategy (it unfortunately categorises the entries that use it as "misspellings", but that can easily be changed.) Would that help? --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 11:45, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
Yes. That's much better (I've changed it accordingly). SemperBlotto (talk) 11:53, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
@Per utramque cavernam I agree with SemperBlotto. Thanks. Wyang (talk) 11:56, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
I've edited the entry so it seems right by my lights. Google antimicrobicide (BooksGroupsScholar) shows that it is not rare at Google Books and G. Scholar. Feel free to revert. Also see Talk:antimicrobicide. DCDuring (talk) 14:08, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
It could be interpreted as emphasis of the killing element of the organism or substance by repetition of the same concept. It would be like the expression to kill someone dead. DCDuring (talk) 14:24, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
Or just throwing multiple semantically-similar morphemes onto the same word without thinking about how they go together. A hot water heater isn't any hotter than a water heater. Chuck Entz (talk) 15:43, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
Good example.
On Google Scholar, the vast majority of authors who use the term seem to not be native speakers.
It seems to exist in French as well.
Of course, it might be used to mean anti- + microbicide or even antimicrobe + -cide, but I haven't yet found such use. DCDuring (talk) 16:33, 18 February 2018 (UTC)

honorary doctor, honorary doctorate[edit]

What do you all think? Are they entry-worthy? DonnanZ (talk) 11:54, 17 February 2018 (UTC)

I think [[honorary]] covers it. DCDuring (talk) 15:57, 17 February 2018 (UTC)
So is an honorary doctor in the same league as a witch doctor? I don't think so. There is a difference between a medical doctor and a non-medical title given by a university. The two terms go together. DonnanZ (talk) 12:00, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
Honorary doctor is in the same league as honorary mayor, honorary witch [book title], honorary fellow, honorary member, honorary degree, honorary coauthor, honorary consultant, etc. How could we improve the definition or usage examples of honorary to make that more clear. DCDuring (talk) 14:06, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
That kind of attitude shouldn't be tolerated for potential translation targets, as in this case. It's probably better to not ask, and take the bull by the horns. DonnanZ (talk) 10:09, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
Attitude? What phrase (or mere collocation) isn't a potential translation target? Why aren't any, indeed all, of the other collocations with honorary potential translation targets? DCDuring (talk) 12:28, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
They are, more than likely. DonnanZ (talk) 17:15, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
If other languages form their translations of these collocations with the same word/prefix for "honorary" that they use in forming their terms for "honorary fellow of the royal society", etc, then I don't see why we would even need a translation target; "honorary" does seem to cover this quite well. As DCDuring says, this sense can be used with a great many words. "She was made an honorary citizen of Canada" or "given honorary citizenship", "she was named an honorary member of the board" or "given honorary membership", etc... - -sche (discuss) 14:38, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
In certain languages compounds are derived from the word for honour rather than for honorary. DonnanZ (talk) 17:12, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
But that's true for all such terms (it's not limited to "honorary doctor" but is also how "honorary citizen" is formed), right? So it's something to document in [[honorary]]'s translations table. - -sche (discuss) 17:29, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

reprendre le flambeaucarry the torch, pick up the torch, take up the torch[edit]

I'm trying to translate reprendre le flambeau (which basically means "to take over") in English. carry the torch, as defined by Collins and Macmillan, could fit the bill, but we're redirecting it to carry a torch for. Is that redirect a good thing, and aren't we confusing two different idioms? (Longman is occupying a sort of middle ground, though)

I'm also finding results for pick up the torch and take up the torch, but it looks like Franglish. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 17:38, 18 February 2018 (UTC)


The definition at Enlgish kawaii says "cute, adorable", but is that accurate ? That may be what the word means in Japanese, but I think the word in English is better depicted in second 2010 citation which describes it as "disproportionately large eyes and heads, and thin bodies"...should this be changed to something like "Of or relating to a style that displays images as juvenile, neotenic, childlike, or vulnerable" ? I can't see anyone saying "Oh, I think that girl's kawaii (i.e."cute, adorable") Leasnam (talk) 20:59, 18 February 2018 (UTC)

I've heard people say "kawaii" meaning "cute" (and never the other body-style one). Equinox 21:01, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
Hrm...okay Leasnam (talk) 21:03, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
I hear "kawaii" as "cute" as well. For the physiognomic sense you describe above, I'd use BESM. -Stelio (talk) 17:14, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

greatest philip[edit]

  • 2018 February 16, “History made in Sierra Leone’s democratic transformation, as Presidential candidates rumbled in landmark debate”, in Cocorioko[28]:
    The greatest philip for me is the fact that people are really deeply debating the key issues.

What does this mean? DTLHS (talk) 21:04, 18 February 2018 (UTC)

@DTLHS: It's either a misspelling or an archaic spelling of fillip. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 22:14, 18 February 2018 (UTC)

birds and bees[edit]

The current definition is "Informal sex education, especially describing the sexual activity of animals rather than that of people." This seems unusual and I have never heard it used that way. I was going to boldly change it just to "informal sex education", but noticed the def came from user:SemperBlotto, an experienced and well respected editor. It's not enough for RFV so thought a tea room discussion would be a good place to enquire. Regards --Dmol (talk) 22:44, 18 February 2018 (UTC)

Doesn't it just mean "sex"? Yeah, it's often used in contexts of informal education, but if you say "Have you told him about the birds and the bees yet?" it doesn't mean "Have you told him about informal sex education". Ƿidsiþ 06:12, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
See also the Wikipedia page. —suzukaze (tc) 06:20, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
The recently-modified version seems OK now. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:11, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

justice warrior[edit]

Is this entry-worthy? It looks like a kind of back-formation from social justice warrior. I can find a few instances on GB, but I dunno. [29], [30], [31], [32]. --Per utramque cavernam (talk) 16:44, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

英語を話せますか | Eigo WO hanasemasu ka or 英語が話せますか | Eigo GA hanasemasu ka?[edit]

I see that 英語 has a usage example あなたは英語が話せますか | Anata wa Eigo ga hanasemasu ka, translated to "Do you speak English", whereas do you speak English has the translation 英語を話せますか | Eigo wo hanasemasu ka. To me, using "ga" feels wrong: "ga" is the subject particle, and the subject here is "you", not "English". So I'd expect the latter to be correct (perhaps with 英語は話せますか | Eigo wa hanasemasu ka as an alternative), whereas the former would be wrong IMO. Is this assessment right? Are they both correct or is there an incorrect one? If both are correct, how is English the subject of "do you speak English?" for the Japanese language? MGorrone (talk) 18:26, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

@MGorrone: In Japanese, potential verbs actually describe a quality of the thing that English speakers would regard as the object: not so much "I can do the thing", and more "the thing is doable by me". So when one uses the verb form 話せる (hanaseru, often glossed as “to be able to speak”), the verb is describing a quality of the term that would be the object in English. A more direct translation would be that "English can be spoken [by someone]". Some verbs of potential can take the direct object particle を, and I've occasionally encountered the opinion that Japanese grammarians regard this as influence from English (which has been a required subject in Japanese education for many decades, possibly since the 1880s if my understanding is correct). However, the default is often が. Another everyday verb of similar construction is 分かる (wakaru). This is often glossed as the transitive English verb to understand, but it is idiomatically closer in meaning to the intransitive construction to be understandable or understood, and the verb requires (ga, the subject particle): 英語分かる (Eigo ga wakaru, English is understandable [by someone]).
I'll have a look at the phrasebook entry. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 20:22, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
@Eirikr: interesting. So both options are correct but the GA option is "more natural". If potentials work that way, what happens if I passivize them? Suppose I write 話せられる | hanaserareru, passive of potential 話せる | hanaseru. Does that exist? If so, what does it mean? —This unsigned comment was added by Mahagaja (talkcontribs) at 22:11, 19 February 2018 (UTC). LIKE HELL THIS IS TRUE. This was posted by ME, MGorrone (talk) 23:21, 19 February 2018 (UTC) And probably far before this 22:11 hour. The 22:11 thing is probably when Mahagaja edited in the missing open brace I could not edit in because of this.
@Mahagaja: As far as I've learned, the potential cannot be combined with the passive. In fact, for many verbs (all the ichidan conjugation verbs; I can never remember what these are called in English materials, maybe "type 2"?), the passive is the potential in standard Japanese, such as 食べられる (to be eaten; to be edible, to be able to eat). Some dialects like what I heard up in the Tōhoku region employ what is called ra-nuki ("ra dropping") to distinguish these two senses for ichidan verbs, resulting in 食べれる (tabereru) as the explicit potential (and not passive) and 食べられる (taberareru) as the explicit passive (and not potential). Be that as it may, the potential and the passive are not combinable as verb conjugations. The closest you could get is a construction like 食べられることできる (taberareru koto ga dekiru, to be able to be eaten). ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 23:06, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
@Eirikr: I see. Oh and it was me posting the above comment, but Wiktionary got confused because of what I added to it. MGorrone (talk) 23:21, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

What is going on with the edit buttons?[edit]

I just added a reply to this thread, and noticed the "reply|" template is missing an open brace {. To my surprise, the Edit button for that post is GONE! And not only that: all the February 2018 posts from "up a storm" on are missing the edit buttons, both on my Mac OSX 10.9's Firefox and on my Huawei p10 lite's Firefox AND Chrome! What is going on? MGorrone (talk) 21:58, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

UPDATE And by what magic does this thread have its edit button? MGorrone (talk) 21:59, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

Fixed it. And this is presumably why the edit button came back for this thread. —Mahāgaja (formerly Angr) · talk 22:11, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
Now I am thoroughly confused. The buttons did come back, but on opening the "this" link I came to the bottom of the page to find no edit buttons AT ALL! And the "this" sentence wasn't there! Is this link an archived version of an older revision prior to the adding of that sentence? And anyway... Oh wait I think I get it. The "Fixed it" edit fixed a double brace to a double square bracket in the entry before "up a storm", which was closed by the one in my messed-up reply. So from a something going from that error to mine and being rendered as is without the addition of edit buttons, this went to what it should have been. The unmatched double closed brace was just ignored. The "this" link is a link to an older revision and such libks always lack edit buttons. Correct? And the buttons came back with this post because the double brace matching the erroneous one was in the post before this one, so the no-edit-button rendering spanned up till then and everything was back to normal after that. Correct @Mahagaja:? MGorrone (talk) 23:16, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

Origin of Catania: Sicilian or Siculian?[edit]

Given that Catania is said to be an indigenous name of the Sicels, it seems strange that it would come from a "Sicilian" word, given that Sicilian is in fact a Romance language derived from Latin (with other influences). Perhaps Siculian (cfr Wikipedia) was actually meant? Or is Siculian sometimes called Sicilian? MGorrone (talk) 23:03, 19 February 2018 (UTC)