Wiktionary:Tea room/2015/December

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discussion rooms: Tea roomEtym. scr.Info deskBeer parlourGrease pit ← November 2015 · December 2015 · January 2016 → · (current)


missing a sense at moment?

Are we not missing the sense of, she has her moments, it has its moments, etc.? ---> Tooironic (talk) 07:58, 1 December 2015 (UTC)

I don't think it would go at moment. It looks like the sense used is simply "A brief, unspecified amount of time". I'm guessing the proper lemma would be have one's moments, but I'm not sure about the definition. Chuck Entz (talk) 08:46, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
I think "his/her/its moments" is certainly a separate (albeit extended) sense of the word, referring specifically to affecting or surprising (or skilful?) moments. The lemma "have one's moments" seems particularly awkward, but I have no better suggestion (other than having the sense at "moment"). Pengo (talk) 00:02, 2 December 2015 (UTC)
Originally I was going to add have one's moments, but then I realised that one could also be it. I also think the average user would not be able to find it if we didn't include it under moment. ---> Tooironic (talk) 03:48, 2 December 2015 (UTC)

It's Dec-specific-name-ember!

It's that exciting time of year again when children around the world and/or just me ask for new specific epithet Wiktionary entries in time for Christmas. Our coverage is pretty good these days. But here's my top 10 red links:

  1. typhi (Salmonella Typhi) - gen. of typhus
  2. solani (Rhizoctonia solaniWP WSp Commons) - gen of Solanum or solanum
  3. stolonifera (Agrostis stoloniferaWP WSp Commons) - stolonifer, stoloniferus
  4. mariana (Picea marianaWP WSp Commons) - marianus (missing definition)
  5. dactylon (Cynodon dactylonWP WSp Commons) genitive plural of δάκτυλος (dáktulos)
  6. ludovicianus (Cynomys ludovicianusWP WSp Commons) Ludovicus (referring to St Louis, MO) + -ianus
  7. millefolium (Achillea millefoliumWP WSp Commons) - Millefolium (obsolete genus) see etymology at milfoil
  8. perfoliatum (Eupatorium perfoliatumWP WSp Commons) - perfoliatus (see etymology at perfoliate)
  9. sitchensis (Picea sitchensisWP WSp Commons) (Sitka spruce) Latin for "[found at] Sitka"
  10. pseudoacacia (Robinia pseudoacaciaWP WSp Commons) - probably alteration of Pseudacacia (obsolete genus), influenced by pseudo- + Acacia.

Ho ho hoPengo (talk) 11:50, 1 December 2015 (UTC)

Nemesia ungoliant? — Ungoliant (falai) 14:35, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
and Chaetospira entzi, Duringia, Phoenix equinoxialis, Stenoma codicata, Semperella, Allocotocera scheria, Rebutia einsteinii, Valvifulgoria pingkuiensis, Cyphon johni, and anyone else I missed —Diamysis pengoi (talk) 22:21, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
I've added to/modified some of DCDuring's annotations on your list above. As I've said before, species are rarely named after obsolete genera, and I haven't been able to find any reference to a genus Pseudoacacia- there's Pseudacacia, but that was published in 1794 and Robinia pseudoacaciaWP WSp Commons was published by Linnaeus in 1753(here). That description refers to w:Mark Catesby's "Pseudo-Acacia hispida, floribus roseis" (not the same species, and not binomial nomenclature). Chuck Entz (talk) 03:49, 2 December 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz Belated thanks for the additions and modifications. DCDuring TALK 04:01, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

Accent aigu should become accent grave in several forms of the conjugation of French verbs

In en.wiktionary.org, indicative present singular 1st, 2nd, 3rd persons and plural 3rd person, subjunctive present singular 1st, 2nd, 3rd persons and plural 3rd person, as well as imperative singular 2nd person: last accent aigu should be replaced / written with accent grave in verbs such as régénérer. I do not know if there is a bot producing (some of) the conjugated forms, but I saw that the conjugation of dégénérer is given correctly (in this respect at least).Redav (talk) 15:02, 1 December 2015 (UTC)

@Redav: The entry for régénérer was just using the wrong template. I fixed in this edit. If you see this again, you can fix it the same way. --WikiTiki89 15:12, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
@Wikitiki89: !شكرا جزيلا Redav (talk) 15:59, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
@Wikitiki89: Excuse me, this is en.wiktionary.org, so: thanks a lot!Redav (talk) 16:01, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
Admin please delete régénére, régénérent and régénéres. Thank you. For non-French speakers, the rule in question is no é before a mute syllable; -e, -ent (verb form) and -es are mute in French. -ent is not mute for non-verb forms such as argent. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:11, 1 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done --WikiTiki89 16:20, 1 December 2015 (UTC)


should there be an adverb form of flagging ?

"In Thailand, blank spaces replace @nytimes article on kingdom's flagging economy"

(unsigned, authored by

You mean adjective. I don't know the rules on idiomaticity very well but the meaning is straightforwardly derived from the present-participle meaning of "flagging" that's given on the page, combined with the definition "to weaken, become feeble" of flag, so I imagine it isn't necessary to add an adjective sense. Benwing2 (talk) 06:47, 2 December 2015 (UTC)


I was going to RFD sense 2 as redundant to sense 1 (we normally merge "inhabitant of" and "citizen of" senses), but I think I may be misunderstanding what the sense is trying to say. It's been in there since the page was created (by an account that only ever made one edit). I don't know what they mean by "historical" – I can't find any evidence on Google Books of Emirati in use prior to the establishment of the modern UAE in 1971 (before that, it was called "Trucial Oman"). Smurrayinchester (talk) 14:02, 2 December 2015 (UTC)

on a hat trick

When a footballer has scored two goals in a game (or a bowler has taken two wickets in successive balls, etc.) they are said to be "on a hat trick". Is this a set phrase, or are we missing a sense of on? The closest seems to be adjective #2 ("are we still on for tonight?"). Keith the Koala (talk) 20:28, 2 December 2015 (UTC)

MWOnline has a preposition subsense that seem to fit this: "6d —used as a function word to indicate position or status in proper relationship with a standard or objective <on schedule>"
The expression in question seems use on in a way close to use in on a roll, on course, on the up and up, on target, on point, on track, on plan, on budget. This makes me wonder whether all but on the up and up are really idioms rather than transparent collocations. Admittedly it is not easy to work one's way through the many definitions, often abstractly worded, in the entries for basic prepositions. DCDuring TALK 22:51, 2 December 2015 (UTC)


Does it have a metaphorical sense, like nip in the bud? -- 11:47, 3 December 2015 (UTC)

false flag and false alarm

Is it just my ignorance, or can false flag also be a synonym of false alarm? --WikiTiki89 00:51, 5 December 2015 (UTC)

Not primarily, at least. "False flag" is a term more associated with subterfuge than with overreaction. Purplebackpack89 01:14, 5 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes, but I was wondering if "a false flag" is ever used in the situation where something is flagged up falsely. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:11, 5 December 2015 (UTC)
I was going to say, I guess something could be "falsely flagged" as needing urgent attention, but that's a bit of a stretch. Pengo (talk) 07:14, 5 December 2015 (UTC)
Maybe it can mean something like red herring? --WikiTiki89 22:46, 5 December 2015 (UTC)


As I remember, there were a fair amount of cites (see Citations:romney) but for a fairly short-lived amount of time. Is there a citable sense now that spans over a year? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 23:29, 5 December 2015 (UTC)

romantic and romantique

English romantic has French romantique as its etymology and vice versa - at least one must be incorrect. Etymonline suggests the English word is the older one, but I'd rather leave it to someone more knowledgeable in the topic and in Wiktionary policy to make any necessary edits. Eishiya (talk) 03:36, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

Neither is incorrect per se, but the French one was woefully incomplete and misleading. I have remedied it — see romantique#Etymology. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 03:48, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

How is proruption a synonym for pene exclave?

Wiktionary spirit of democracy

While I in no way wish to influence this vote, I do wish to use it as a deontic experiment to see what the true spirit of democracy is like here on Wiktionary. I am currently ineligible to vote as User:Metaknowledge points out. I ask you to discuss the epistemic prediction of User:Ruakh that the result is a foregone conclusion? Forgot to sign, hope the ping wasn't necessary. Riverstogo (talk) 01:25, 7 December 2015 (UTC)

@Riverstogo: This is not the appropriate place for such a post. Maybe try WT:ID. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 01:26, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
With respect, explain yourself? Riverstogo (talk) 01:28, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
WT:TR is for the kinds of discussions outlined at the top of the page. This is not one of them. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 01:32, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
OK. How about now? Riverstogo (talk) 01:41, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
You're putting words in my mouth. I did not say that the result was a "foregone conclusion". By the time I posted my prediction, the vote had been open for more than a week, more than a dozen editors had voted, and the vote by that point was unanimously in favor (as it still is). I therefore predicted that the final outcome would be consistent with the initial votes. If that strikes you as somehow sinister and undemocratic, then that probably says something about you rather than about us! —RuakhTALK 04:50, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
I detect a tone of light accusation in you voice. You seem to imply that my use of "foregone conclusion" was somehow sinister and democratic. I do not wish to further convey the second, or third part of the meaning "or inevitable conclusion, or one made without any consideration". I am sorry that you felt I must have meant [that] too, as democratically that is how it must be understood by the hoi polloi, no? If I was to accept such understandings within a social contract, I might be severely restricted in what I could say, and think therefore. This may not trouble you, but as a simple (now eligible?) voter I want to make a decision informedly. As we are talking about me, strike me down if I don't feel terrible about any confusion this has caused (if it still does). Why else should I go to the trouble of linking to a definition if I didn't want to check it myself? And having done so I can put it to the vote. --Riverstogo (talk) 03:25, 23 December 2015 (UTC)
A good number of matters here are "foregone conclusions" by the time they get to a vote because they are not brought to a vote until there is a consensus. This is especially true of a vote to give a user powers (admin, checkuser, bureaucrat). It is almost entirely a matter of trust of the individual by interested contributors who meet minimal trust requirements themselves. I fail to see how this can be called anti-democratic. OTOH, there are numerous substantive and procedural matters, large and small, over which there is vigorous disagreement.
I also fail to see what justifies this discussion being in the Tea Room. Although the matter barely merits any forum other than WT:ID, IMO, it might belong at WT:BP. DCDuring TALK 15:14, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
I fail to see how there is a consensus until the time matters not only get to a vote, but are voted on? This is especially true of giving a user the power to vote. The individual interested eligible voting contributors who meet minimal trust requirements themselves, (mainly that they choose to perform all their edits and votes under one account?) typically have many tens of thousands of Main namespace edits. How can you say this isn't enforcing views contrary to that of a majority of the public, who have no edits to speak of?
The Tea Room is the basis for discussion of individual pages, given the problems pointed out at the WT:ID. I wouldn't blame you for not realising this, there is enough to do just keeping oneself up to date. If it belongs in WP:BP feel free to move it there. --Riverstogo (talk) 03:25, 23 December 2015 (UTC)


We have both postoperative and post-operative. One should be just marked as an alternative spelling of the other, no? Logan Talk Contributions 02:42, 7 December 2015 (UTC)

Yes, operation complete. Riverstogo (talk) 04:37, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
All of the interwiki links were removed from postoperative and added to post-operative with the addition of a hyphen. People never (a) remove links that point to existing pages (b) add links that point to non-existent pages--one gets Dieser Eintrag existiert noch nicht! etc.--or (c) add links that differ from the entry itself. A word to the wise: please slow down.
I suggest restoring the previous versions, not only to fix the interwiki links, but at least to allow a more generous window for discussion. --Haplogy () 05:11, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
I've restored the interwiki links to where they belong. Also, on the basis of [1], I've made postoperative the primary form and post-operative the alternative form. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:19, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
Links aside, why should a second postoperative definition be exemplified by a post-operative quotation? --Riverstogo (talk) 03:41, 23 December 2015 (UTC)


Our entry for wrap doesn't seem to include a sense that covers the usage in terms like "line wrapping" and "word wrapping". The 3rd sense is closest, perhaps, but doesn't really capture it. Is there such a separate sense of that word that we should add to the entry? - dcljr (talk) 20:04, 7 December 2015 (UTC)

I can also think of wrap text, meaning to wrap around on a new line, "continue" Leasnam (talk) 20:07, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
I took a stab at it. Feel free to improve as needed Leasnam (talk) 20:15, 7 December 2015 (UTC)


What is the translation of Spanish "ezmelín" in this passage?

  • 1981, Historia general de España:
    Los ricoshombres e hidalgos se procuraban sus vestidos y telas del extranjero, sobre todo de Flandes, de donde llegaban la escarlata, el ezmelín y los blaos.
    The noblemen and hidalgos procured their clothes and fabrics from abroad, especially from Flanders, from whence came the scarlet, the ezmelín, and the azures.

I can't find anything besides this one quote, so a misspelling or alternative form of some word? DTLHS (talk) 00:16, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

Perhaps a variant of or related to esmeralda? Chuck Entz (talk) 03:20, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

regional economics

Anyone well-versed in economics is welcome to look at this definition and correct it if necessary. The Wikipedia page introduction is so convoluted that I had trouble. ---> Tooironic (talk) 00:20, 8 December 2015 (UTC)


Can anyone help with an Greek->English translation? - I'm looking for a word meaning "expressing wish" in the "subjunctive" sense.   — Saltmarshσυζήτηση-talk 07:04, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

Not sure what you mean by "subjunctive"; the Greek-English dictionary I just checked simply translates it as "wishing". —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 08:14, 8 December 2015 (UTC)
I should have said that I was looking for a grammatical adjective describing wish/desire for something to happen. I think that this would be included in the possible "senses" of the subjunctive mood. Not too vague I hope !   — Saltmarshσυζήτηση-talk 18:38, 8 December 2015 (UTC)
Like desiderative? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:44, 8 December 2015 (UTC)
There's also the optative mood. Benwing2 (talk) 00:11, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
Like desiderative ! Thanks folks   — Saltmarshσυζήτηση-talk 06:16, 9 December 2015 (UTC)

Also XA, XBq, Xcd, XF, Xg, XGy, XH, XHz, XJ, Xkat, Xlm, Xlx, Xm, Xmol, XN, XPa, Xrad, Xs, Xsr, XSv, XW, XWb.

These claim to be entries in Appendix:SI units, but there is no such SI prefix. Am I missing something, or were these created by mistake? (@BD2412). Keith the Koala (talk) 14:04, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

I've certainly never come across any of these in the world of physics. Having made a few checks at random, "Xmol" finds lots of Gbooks hits for x mol, a few scannos of μmol, a couple of χmol and some for the molecule modeling software "XMol", but no sign of it in use in chemistry. Similarly, Xrad and Xkat find nothing. Smurrayinchester (talk) 08:49, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
  • It occurred to me that the initial editor probably intended the "X" to be a placeholder. I note that we do have entries for SI unit abbreviations /, mmol/Mmol, mkat/Mkat, etc. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 09:44, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
    • I may have been thinking of exa- prefixes (for which the abbreviation is, of course, an "E", not an "X"). I have deleted them. bd2412 T 13:38, 9 December 2015 (UTC)


Believe it or not, I don't think this entry covers every sense. Can it not also be the grant of a licence or right to do something? Donnanz (talk) 20:40, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

Good catch. MWOnline presents it as follows:
2: something conceded or granted:
a : acknowledgment, admission
b : something done or agreed to usually grudgingly in order to reach an agreement or improve a situation
c (1) : a grant of land or property especially by a government in return for services or for a particular use (2) : a right to undertake and profit by a specified activity (3) : a lease of a portion of premises for a particular purpose; also : the portion leased or the activities carried on

2c(2) is your sense. Note also 2c(3) and its "also". DCDuring TALK 23:02, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

Hmm, OK, thanks, I was thinking in terms of concessions for oil exploration, which may not necessarily take place on dry land. Anyway, how do we fit it into the entry? Donnanz (talk) 00:26, 9 December 2015 (UTC)

друг к другу, друг в друга, etc.

These forms are Russian equivalents of each other or one another, only occurring in oblique cases. If a preposition is needed, it's inserted between the two forms. While I see no problem with друг дру́га (drug drúga), there are various entries with prepositions between the forms, e.g. друг к другу, друг в друга, etc. Should they be kept, if yes, what format? Currently, some of these are badly formatted and have errors. (Note: the etymology is #2, "(an)other", not "friend"). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 21:36, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

See also ни о ком. Benwing2 (talk) 00:10, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
@Benwing2. Thanks. Yes, the same thing with ни о ком. Are we going to add all possible combinations of prepositions inserted into pronoun pairs? I know it's a useful piece of grammar. @Stephen G. Brown You are the author, please comment with your opinion, if you can. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:18, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
ни о ком just needs to link to никто, where the full declension should be shown. For phrases such as друг к другу and друг в друга, it might be nice if they linked to a basic form such as друг дру́га (drug drúga), and all of the forms shown at друг дру́га (drug drúga). However, they are not really declensions of друг дру́га (drug drúga), they are individual phrases. I think all of them should be shown and defined somehow, but I don’t know if there is a better way than what we have right now. —Stephen (Talk) 05:20, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
@Stephen G. Brown Thanks, Stephen. When you say "link", do you mean a hard redirect or a soft redirect (inflected form of?)? If they are not inflected forms, what are they? To show all of them would be hard, as "друг 1" + preposition + (the right form of) "друг 2" is A LOT OF possible combinations. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:30, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
I mean links like "inflected form of".
It isn’t necessary to have every possibility, but there are a number of important ones. I’m sure I put all of the important ones here somewhere years ago, but someone may have deleted them. Russian Wiktionary includes some of them at ru:друг друга. Russian Wikipedia shows them at w:ru:Взаимные местоимения. We should be at least as complete as them. —Stephen (Talk) 05:43, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
But "ни о ком" is not just an inflected form, it is a form with a preposition. Any preposition can be placed in that position: "ни в ком", "ни с кем", "ни от кого", "ни в кого", "ни к кому", etc. The only special thing about the prepositional case is that it never occurs without a preposition and so "ником" does not exist. --WikiTiki89 16:14, 9 December 2015 (UTC)

It's not just the number of possibilities, there are variants of the forms themselves, colloquial or less common, e.g. "друг дружке" or "один другому" = "друг другу". Yes, those with prepositions are not just inflected forms. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 21:17, 9 December 2015 (UTC)

FWIW, we do have the suitably vague {{form of}}, if "inflected form of" doesn't fit. - -sche (discuss) 21:14, 11 December 2015 (UTC)
@-sche A good suggestion, thanks! --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 23:58, 13 December 2015 (UTC)


Does the French noun chic have a plural form? — justin(r)leung { (t...) | c=› } 23:42, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

The adjective has both chic and chics, but the noun usually is only chic. In a figurative sense, I think it is possible to have chics. —Stephen (Talk) 05:30, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
The current entry has chic as the plural of the noun. Should this be changed? — justin(r)leung { (t...) | c=› } 06:54, 9 December 2015 (UTC)

sense 4 of 'verlassen' transitivity

Sense four of 'verlassen' 'to dump' (a partner) is listed as intransitive, however the quotation given is of it being used transitively: "Nach einer dreijährigen Beziehung verließ sie ihn." IIRC there are certain conditions for intransitive verbs to be used with a dative object in German but never to my knowledge with an accusative object.

Fixed. It's always transitive. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:21, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
Just to clarify: Intransitive verbs can never be used with an accusative object because taking an accusative object is the definition of "transitive". So that's for sure. Intransitive verbs can have accusatives, but they are not objects in that case, but adverbs. For example: Ich habe drei Stunden gearbeitet. ("I've worked [for] three hours.") Kolmiel (talk) 14:50, 9 December 2015 (UTC)
No, it's an adverbial accusative, a relatively common construction for chiefly temporal adverbs. I think you have that in English, too. Or at least that's how I would interpret the "last month" in: We went to Glasgow last month. German would use the accusative "letzten Monat" for that. Kolmiel (talk) 20:35, 9 December 2015 (UTC)


The evidence available to me suggests that Modern English derve is a ghost word. There is an entry for it in the OED2 (no OED3 entry yet), but it lists only OE and ME forms, the last citation being dated a1225. Another editor suggested it might be a dialectal term; unfortunately, vol. 2 of the EDD is broken at the Internet Archive. There is no entry in AHD or ODO.

I suggest it be removed altogether, including the links from deorfan. There is no ME definition at derven, only a MDu one. —This unsigned comment was added by Johnwcowan (talkcontribs) at 08:08, December 10, 2015.

If no modern attestation can be found, I suggest moving it to Middle English derven, keeping sense 1 and 2 as is (yet removing the modern english example at 1) Leasnam (talk) 16:23, 10 December 2015 (UTC)
I can only find dictionary hits (as obsolete) and mentions (as if the word were readily recognised as "oh, it's THIS word"), but not much else Leasnam (talk) 16:28, 10 December 2015 (UTC)
There is also a 1320 and 1375 cite. I will move this to Middle English Leasnam (talk) 11:49, 27 December 2015 (UTC)

civil defense

(and civil defence) Is this a good definition? I think it can be an organisation as well. Donnanz (talk) 16:20, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

  • It looks as though the definition has been taken from the first sentence in the Wikipedia article. Donnanz (talk) 16:40, 11 December 2015 (UTC)
Really? You can say "he works in a civil defense"? ---> Tooironic (talk) 01:32, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
No you can't say "he works in a civil defense". Maybe "he works in civil defense". Benwing2 (talk) 03:55, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
No, no indefinite article: "he works in civil defence", although it may be voluntary work and not full-time. The fact that peacetime civil defence operations include dealing with disasters rather than wars has been overlooked. Donnanz (talk) 09:10, 12 December 2015 (UTC)

Additional meaning for sweeper

I'm from within US area code 43311 (in Ohio) and here it is very wide spread to use the word "sweeper" to mean vacuum cleaner. I am new to editing wiktionary, and I also do not have a source handy to cite for this, but it is most definitely common enough that maybe somebody else should look into it? Gingersassy (talk) 17:34, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

Apparently in Indiana too: [2]. I have added this sense as "US, regional"; expansion and citation would be nice. Equinox 17:40, 11 December 2015 (UTC)
We typically call those zip codes or postal codes. Area code usually refers to a telephone prefix. Leasnam (talk) 17:54, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

What is this symbol? An ampersand?

And symbol from 1488 Lancelot du Lac by Jean Dupré.png

commons:File:And symbol from 1488 Lancelot du Lac by Jean Dupré.png, http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/bpt6k111060r/f43.item.zoom five lines from the bottom, right column. Appears throughout and seems to mean 'and'. I've been 'translating' it with &, because why not. Renard Migrant (talk) 20:41, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

It doesn't look too far off the leftmost one of these: [3]. Equinox 20:47, 11 December 2015 (UTC)
It's a Tironian et. So, yes, an "and" sign. - -sche (discuss) 21:04, 11 December 2015 (UTC)
The Unicode character for the Tironian et is ⁊, which you will find in Miscellaneous edit tools under "Other symbols". —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:45, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Thanks all. I might need some more fonts as it's displaying as a box :(. Renard Migrant (talk) 14:04, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
For me, it displays as something similar to the number 7, which is quite different from how it looks in the manuscript linked to above. --WikiTiki89 16:34, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
The canonical shape is 7-like, but there is enormous variety (as with &s). In German Fraktur, it often looked like 2 and was sometimes typed using the r rotunda character, as here. In Icelandic manuscripts it often looked like an uppercase J or backwards C, but frequently the ends gained additional hooks / flourishes: the top bar could end in a downward or an upward-pointing curve, and the bottom/right-side bar could curve left like J, or left and then back right again, resulting in shapes similar to Renard's. (Here are two versions in the space of four words of the Konungsbók.) But then again, Renard's could also be a stylized 'et' (i.e. an ampersand rather than Tironian shorthand). - -sche (discuss) 20:32, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
So then why does Unicode distinguish it from the ampersand? --WikiTiki89 21:32, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
The ampersand is a ligature of the letters 'et'. Tironian et is just a quick, easy-to-draw angle that's used as a shorthand substitute for 'and' (originally as part of an extensive system of angles used as stenographic shorthand for various prepositions, etc); it's not a ligature of anything. The plus sign is another thing that is used to mean 'and'. All three are separate things, but sometimes it's unclear which one was written. Renard's glyph could be a Tironian et with flourishes coming off of both its top bar and its bottom/right bar, similar to the ones in the Konungsbók... but it could also be that the left-hand bar is the curve of an 'e', joined to a 't' (the right-hand bar); it's ambiguous. - -sche (discuss) 22:50, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Not to deny anything that -sche said, or say that it wouldn't have been encoded otherwise, but I believe the most important reason it was encoded was because Irish writers were using 7 online instead of &, which meant that the Tironian sign was clearly distinct from the ampersand in the minds of a body of modern users.--Prosfilaes (talk) 02:28, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
If I copy verbatim from Wikipedia (but remove the template because we don't have it) it displays for me. . Click edit to see what code that is. Renard Migrant (talk) 21:46, 14 December 2015 (UTC)


Currently, the main sense of the verb is "To perform the role of a host.". But hosting a show and hosting a conference are very different things, that shouldn't be lumped under one sense. If you host a show, you act as a presenter and guide it through its programming. Whereas hosting a conference means providing space and accommodation for it to take place. —CodeCat 02:09, 12 December 2015 (UTC)

Surely "perform the role of a host" can refer to any of the meanings of the noun "host", which does seem to cover the various functions you mention in senses 2, 3, and 4. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:43, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes, but that doesn't mean that these are not distinct meanings. It merely means that they can be described with the same noun. —CodeCat 19:41, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
So you would want us to have three (or more) separate definitions that all say "perform the role of a host"? --WikiTiki89 16:40, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Perhaps someone could make a reasoned case that the grammar (transitive/intransitive, etc, and any different types of complements) as well as the semantic range of the subjects or objects of the verb in the various different usages warrants multiple senses of the verb. For the intransitive verb one noun-based definition seems adequate. For the transitive verb, one can host guests (or services or software) and one can host events. The "guest" and "event" senses each seem to me to warrant a definition. Whether one wants to go further to have subsenses is another question. DCDuring TALK 17:03, 14 December 2015 (UTC)

Suspicious entry for спешить

The entry for спешить is somewhat mysterious. (I'm a Russian beginner, so have no idea what's going on.) There are three headings: "Etymology 1", "Etymology 2" (empty), and "Etymology". The first meaning is given as "Dismount (someone)" which is suspicious to say the least. Can a Russian expert look at it? Thanks. Imaginatorium (talk) 04:23, 12 December 2015 (UTC)

Fixed the etymology headers. Benwing2 (talk) 04:31, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
The first definition was added by a Russian expert- but apparently not an English expert. It was originally "dismount transitive", and it looks like they just chose the wrong pronoun. I don't speak Russian, though, so I'll leave it for someone who does. Chuck Entz (talk) 05:51, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Fixed better. —Stephen (Talk) 05:56, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Benwing2 and Stephen! I hope the meanings are clearer, the original definitions were not incorrect either but English wasn't good, sorry. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:02, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
I reordered the etymology sections. The meaning "to hurry" is much, much more frequent. --WikiTiki89 16:42, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes, "to hurry" is more frequent but "to cause to dismount" is not rare either. It's definitely not a rare or unusual form, even if it looks "mysterious" for User:Imaginatorium. It's hard to check it in the normal form but its reflexive counterpart спе́шиться (spéšitʹsja) has a lot of hits in the Google books. This reflexive form has only the "to dismount" sense. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:03, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Just to be clear, I didn't say that "спе́шить" was rare. It's just that "спеши́ть" is the kind of verb you might use several times a day, while "спе́шить", I'm guessing, no more than several times a year. --WikiTiki89 15:40, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for sorting this out. All I meant by "mysterious" was the combination of messed-up syntax (the Etymology headings) and "dismount (someone)" which I could only read as a sexual reference, and thought might be vandalism. If it's just the verb "dismount" then no mystery at all. Imaginatorium (talk) 15:51, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
It isn’t just the verb dismount, it is "cause to dismount". That is, "dismount" in intransitive, while "cause to dismount" is transitive. I dismounted first (intransitive), and then I had my men dismount (I caused them to dismount, transitive). —Stephen (Talk) 05:59, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
I'll just point out that the difference is not transitivity. "Dismount" can also be transitive, as in "he dismounted horse". The difference between "dismount" and "cause to dismount" is solely in causation. Also note that "dismount" can also mean "cause to dismount", as in "he dismounted me from the horse". --WikiTiki89 14:50, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

Borrowing someone

I have a British coworker who when he wants me to look at something says, "Can I borrow you for a minute?". I don't think our entry for borrow has a sense that covers this. Is it just British usage? I don't remember hearing it in the U.S. when I lived there, but I do remember Prof. McGonagle in the first Harry Potter novel saying "Can I borrow Wood for a moment?" in reference to a student named Oliver Wood. I'm not quite sure how to define it; "have a moment of (someone's) time", perhaps? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:41, 12 December 2015 (UTC)

It's sense 1 really: just a humorous usage, as though you are borrowing them (from their desk, or their work obligations) in the same way you might borrow a pencil etc. Equinox 07:44, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Etymologically, sure, but I think it's taken on a separate meaning of its own, especially since (if my impression is correct) you can't say this in all varieties of English that have sense 1. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:49, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
A similar thing to me is "where does (inanimate object) live?", i.e. where is it kept. We have no sense for that either. I wonder if other dictionaries have it. Equinox 07:54, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
In the part of the US where I am at they use stay for "live, reside"...as in " Where do you stay at ?". Odd to me. It's just all slang, isn't it ? Leasnam (talk) 12:55, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
I think "borrow" and "live" are just sort of metaphors. I have heard phrases like "Can I borrow your brains" and so forth quite often (in the UK). SemperBlotto (talk) 08:29, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Well, many things in language start out as occasional methapors, rhymes, onomatopoeias. But as soon as they become fixed expressions that people recognize and use again, they do qualify for a dictionary, I think. (Just generally, I don't know anything about this particular one.) Kolmiel (talk) 13:45, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
I've never heard that one used. "To borrow someone" (usually meaning "to take someone aside to talk to them") is quite common and isn't intended to be humorous in my experience with it (I'm from Alberta, Canada). I think it merits a separate definition. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 02:20, 13 December 2015 (UTC)
I don't see it as unusual as an American English speaker. I'd prefer calling it sense 1, though I don't strongly disagree with either way. I don't think it's specific to British English, however.--Prosfilaes (talk) 19:34, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Hmm... Again: I'm not an expert on this. But sense 1 is: "To receive (something) from somebody temporarily, expecting to return it." This doesn't seem to match the sense mentioned by ANGR at all. -- Well, maybe, if you say: I receive the focus of your attention and return it to you for you to direct it towards what you want. But this is so construed that I really think it should have its own definition. But... this is the last I'm gonna say about it. Kolmiel (talk) 20:04, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Okay, whatever: I do say another thing. We also have "to buy" someone, meaning to "bribe" them, as a special definition. I think that's pretty much the same analogy or metaphor.Kolmiel (talk) 20:28, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
Would anyone really have any doubts about what it means? The lexicographer Patrick Hanks (COBUILD, Collins, etc), in a recent book and earlier, differentiates usage of terms into norms and exploitations. The more common meanings constitute the norms, which a creative language user exploits by using the word in a way that does not adhere the strict norm, but extends use in a new, but readily understood direction. As our attestation standards are fairly loose, we can usually attest such novel usages, even though they may always be exploitations (serial protologisms) and never become norms (ie, enter the lexicon). To me this is clearly a simple exploitation broadening the range of objects of borrowing. I'd be surprised if there wasn't a long history of such exploitation, without the exploitative use truly entering the basic lexicon. A dictionary that only covers the norms provides language users with a basis for understanding most good exploitations. We have chosen to include them, part of how we have earned Hanks' scorn. DCDuring TALK 22:35, 12 December 2015 (UTC)
But how do we test whether a usage has entered the lexicon or is merely a creative exploitation? The reason I'm even asking about this meaning of "borrow" is because I feel like it has entered some speakers' lexicon, though not mine; and although I do understand it, it still strikes me as an odd use of the verb, even though my coworker says it to me almost every day. I understand it; I know what it means; but it still strikes me as a separate meaning of "borrow" that exists in other people's lexicon but not in my own. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:17, 13 December 2015 (UTC)
I don't know exactly, but Hanks is an advocate of using analysis of collocations from big corpora to help come up with senses. Unfortunately that's something WMF would have to pay for if we are to be able to use it systematically, though individuals can download and use at least some of the BYU corpora.
I think sense-subsense presentation helps clarify the relationship and overlap of senses if we have it, which we probably will. Subsenses possibly should be in use wherever we have a by extension label. DCDuring TALK 14:04, 13 December 2015 (UTC)
I'd say I've heard this expression enough times to say it's passed through creative exploitation a long time ago and has entered the lexicon. And it seems to have a idiomatic meaning in that it is implied that they are "borrowed" for a brief word and so the "borrowee" can resume their conversation and involvement afterwards, so you might "borrow" someone to let them know there's a problem with the bar tab, but you wouldn't ask to "borrow" someone for a dance, even if each was likely to take just as long. Pengo (talk) 22:11, 13 December 2015 (UTC)
This Google search for "borrow(ed) someone from" suggests plenty of use in a longer-term context. The use of "borrow" in the context of a social event might entail more politeness than in other contexts. And there's this:
  • 2014, Brenda Janowitz, Scot on the Rocks:
    “May I cut in?” Mrs. Martin asked. Our faces simultaneously turned away from each other to look at her. “Douglas, dear, do you think that your fiancée would mind if I borrowed you for a dance?”
Is the broadening of application of a semantic slot enough to merit a new definition, when the meaning is as transparent as this? DCDuring TALK 00:18, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Personally, I would say yes. Pengo (talk) 03:02, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
"A term should be included if it's likely that someone would run across it and want to know what it means." Evidently the converse is not held, That is, in effect, we include items merely because existing definitions are not a precise fit with a given cluster of usage, even when the meaning is obvious and no one would "want to know what it means" in the cluster of usage. DCDuring TALK 04:33, 14 December 2015 (UTC)

But is the meaning even so self-evident? I really don't think so. Wiktionary is for non-native users of English, too. From my German perspective: yes, admittedly, I find it relatively obvious. But I consider it probable that users from some cultures will find it much more problematic to decode. -- And, anyway, it's definitely not a literal use of the verb "to borrow something", and hence, why not give it a definition, so that anyone who might be in doubt, can look it up? Kolmiel (talk) 20:43, 14 December 2015 (UTC)

It is an extension of the range of occupants of the object slot. Here's an instance of such an extension in the subject slot:
  • 2011, John H. Vandermeer, The Ecology of Agroecosystems, page 156:
    Thus, it could attain its neutral valence state by borrowing an electron from somewhere else.
If our definition of borrow didn't have "(something)" in it, there would not be any good argument for an additional definition. Some of our definitions, like this one, are written with a spurious specificity. This might be attributable to a lack of a style guide or to more invidious causes. DCDuring TALK 22:42, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Or it might be attributable to the fact that defining most words is hard to impossible, and that most words have a core meaning with extensions. If I said that "it didn't really "borrow" the election", I think most people would understand what I mean and defend it as communicating the meaning, even if it wasn't precisely correct.--Prosfilaes (talk) 02:24, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
I'm just arguing that we can finesse the debate by modifying the definition. I find yours and Hanks' arguments about definitions to verge on nihilism. I think of each definition as a point in a multidimensinal cloud of meaning. A good single definition is close to the center of the cloud with nothing that unduly excludes normal meanings. For a polysemic word the definitions stake out points nearer the edges of the cloud and together span the space of normal uses. DCDuring TALK 03:36, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
I completely agree with DCD, and in general I think that our compulsion to codify fine distinctions by multiplying the definition lines (atheism is a particularly egregious example that I've argued about in the past) is one of the areas where Wiktionary seems least mature as a dictionary. Language is not algebra and real-world uses often skip around the Platonic ideals of dictionary definitions. I personally think we should be wary of pinning them down too firmly, especially when adding distinctions that are not recognised by other lexicographers. Ƿidsiþ 07:24, 18 December 2015 (UTC)

Created new pages

Hi all,

I just created a few new pages for Irish words. I am new to editing, so I was wondering if anyone would be able to quickly check out the pages to make sure I didn't leave out anything important or make any errors?

iairiglif iairiglife iairiglifí féinphic féinphiceanna


--Zumley (talk) 16:41, 14 December 2015 (UTC)

Doesn't look like you left out anything essential, but inflection and mutation tables are nice to have for Irish entries. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 16:50, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Perfect, thanks for your help. Also, thank you for the addition to the page! --Zumley (talk) 17:06, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
One little mistake: at féinphic you labeled {{compound}} with lang=en instead of lang=ga. Easy enough mistake to make; even those of us who have been around for 10 years still do that sort of thing from time to time.
Ah, well spotted. I completely missed that! Thank you. Just a comment about féinphic etymology though, I thought that the "phic" came from pictiúr? I may be mistaken though! :) Many thanks again for you additions! --Zumley (talk) 17:32, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
It's certainly possible that pictiúr underwent a clipping to pic in exactly the same way that English picture did, but I think it's slightly more likely that Irish speakers (all of whom are, after all, bilingual in English) simply adapted the already clipped English word. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:22, 14 December 2015 (UTC)
Ok, that makes sense! --Zumley (talk) 19:30, 14 December 2015 (UTC)

New page about creditism

Hi all,

I encountered this article recently which seemed a bit strange at first until I understood what the author was getting at. The use of the word seems to go back to 2011 or 2012 and produces numerous results on Google.

I have also found an alternate meaning which applies to a social credit movement in Canada but the word only seems to be used in the French language (créditisme).

As this is my first article creation could someone please help me improve the page? Thanks in advance :) .

--JamesPoulson (talk) 01:10, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

The best way to make sure that we have and keep a good page on creditism would be to add to Citations:creditism and many citations as you can that clearly illustrate how the word is used. All of the uses should be from books, scholarly articles, print newspapers and magazines, and UseNet. Once there are three uses that seem to be of the same definition, we can have an entry that is not subject to challenge and deletion. There may be more than one definition in use, but documenting usage of the most common definition is the best place to start. The shortcut of looking at other dictionaries for definitions may not be available as creditism at OneLook Dictionary Search shows that none of their online dictionaries have it. There might be a definition in the OED. DCDuring TALK 03:56, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Hi DCDuring, I completely missed the citations tab. Thank you for pointing it out :) . Could sources include excerpts from a video from a news channel?
There is another possible definition which is very specifically attributed to a certain Ben Bernanke in the terms of an economic policy opposed to monetarism. It is difficult to decipher but it seems to be explained in this article as a "lending-determines-spending doctrine". I don't yet know if "creditism" was used directly but this book says that Ben Bernanke came up with the term "creditist". I'm not sure how to quote text on Wikimedia.
"In his 1988 paper Bernanke had proposed the lending-determines-spending doctrine as an alternative to 'standard models of aggregate demand' (as he termed them), which paid more attention to money than to loans. In fact, Bernanke saw the 'money-only frame-work' as 'traditional' and regarded his own work as an innovation. He even coined the word `creditist' to describe a central bank with a special alertness to credit developments. Implicitly he was contrasting `creditism' with 'monetarism', where monetarism is understood as the claim that the quantity of money — nowadays dominated by bank deposits — is crucial in the determination of national income. Bernanke said in forthright terms that in some circumstances 'a credit-based policy' would be 'superior' to `a money-based policy'."
--JamesPoulson (talk) 16:12, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
OED has no creditism but does have a noun créditiste, usually capitalised: "An adherent of any of a number of Canadian Social Credit parties, esp. the Quebec wing of the Social Credit party in Canada or the separate party formed by it; a member of parliament belonging to this." Equinox 21:29, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
That seems to be the other meaning encountered. As both English and French is spoken in some parts of Canada, some locally used terms are swapped between the languages and sometimes transition to worldwide usage. The term is probably capitalized with respect to the social movement. --JamesPoulson (talk) 16:12, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
A simple search of books at Google.com for creditism finds 400+ (raw count) hits for creditism. Most of the hits relate to an economic theory that claims a strong causal link from bank credit to GDP/GNP (ie, more bank credit leads to economic prosperity). This contrasts with monetarism in which it is not bank credit but some measure of the money supply that is the driver of prosperity (or inflation).
Another definition of creditism is "social creditism", which probably merits its own entry. RHU defines as "the doctrine that under capitalism there is an inadequate distribution of purchasing power, for which the remedy lies in governmental control of retail prices and the distribution of national dividends to consumers." DCDuring TALK 19:55, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for the research DCDuring. According to investopedia GDP can be oversimplified to mean the sum of incomes or spending. I am still not clear about monetarism. However, inflation I do understand and perhaps introducing more money allows some to flow to where it's needed and can be spent. I remember reading something along the lines that Ben Bernanke considers the relation between the money supply and spending (GDP) to be a "black box". There would be no direct relationship between the two.
Now, this is where things get confusing. If you go to Money creation it says:
"In the contemporary monetary system, most money in circulation exists not as cash or coins but as bank deposits. The main way in which those bank deposits are created, is through loans made by commercial banks. When a bank makes a loan, a deposit is created at the same time in the borrower's bank account."
So, the deposits that make up most money are mainly created through loans. This loaned money would increase the money supply and allow for a boost in terms of spending which in turn would influence GDP. So I don't really understand what mechanisms are used with monetarism.unless money is introduced (or removed?) via other means.
As for social creditism, I will research this further :) --JamesPoulson (talk) 22:08, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
This is macroeconomics, which I hated when I studied it, but I did study it. Rather than you studying it to write a good definition, allow me. DCDuring TALK 22:13, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
creditism is also related to the loanable funds theory, more tedious macroeconomics. DCDuring TALK 22:15, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
Thank you. I am mostly self-taught and struggling a bit so this is welcome :) .
In passing, what do you think of Richard Duncan's use of the word creditism? Here is one appearance at The Economist on the theme of the debt crisis and here is another link. He is most probably promoting his book. He is apparently putting forward the idea of government spending with the apparent view that a solution cannot come from the private sector. This can be coupled with other content such as this article titled "Austrian Economics Would Destroy The World".
Here is an attempt at a synthesis of what appears to be a narrative. He is apparently drawing a line between 19th century capitalism (just capital?) and the current system of "creditism" (increased credit usage mixed in with increased consumption? having started 40 years ago?) stating that the latter has a different set of rules that should be recognized to solve the current day crisis. The last paragraph of the first link suggests heavy interference (tax+spend, monetary policy, interest rates...) in the economy is part of this idea of "creditism". There is the statement the money has become "credit" since it lost gold backing and the book title mentionning paper money apparently refers to fiat. The end of Bretton Woods and the gold standard is said to be what allowed the continued deficits of states. There is also the statement that debt deflation is the cause of depressions and recessions (the second article mentions shrinking debt) and that this could lead one day to a collapse. A link is made with the credit cycle (and a resulting credit bubble? A "debt explosion" that went into asset prices such as houses and not consumer goods?). There is also a reference to the economist Irving Fisher, Richard Duncan's "Quantity Theory of Credit" being an adaptation of Fisher's. --JamesPoulson (talk) 02:03, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
Irving Fisher was an early advocate of monetarism. This is not a place for any extensive discussion of economic theory. There are already some places in Wikipedia that discuss creditism as a theory. For Wiktionary purposes we could have a gold-standard entry for creditism that contained a cite from the 1988 Bernanke article, from the earliest use of the term in something close to Bernanke's definition, and some recent citations, perhaps one from a mainstream economist and one from someone of less orthodox beliefs and policy recommendations (Duncan?). DCDuring TALK 03:26, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
It looks like I have some reading to do about Irving Fisher :) . Yes, I agree that there is no use in discussion other than for drawing out definitions. This was just a demonstration of effort to condense information for review to decide if an extra definition was needed as you took the trouble of clarifying notions through expertize. Any "-ism" is a view and focus should be on usage.
I don't see a link between a gold standard and Bernanke's creditism. With respect to Duncan, I don't see how "money has become credit" with the drop of that standard. As I understand things paper notes were originally applied to a reserve of value and the idea of a reserve is still there under another form. What's explained on Money creation would be a separate evolution.
For now, I have added two examples of mainstream usage from Usenet to the citations tab. Hopefully, there are some sources where the context is less caricatural. I will add more. In passing, on Google Books there is a book from 1973 with creditism in it's title but pages aren't available for viewing. --JamesPoulson (talk) 22:01, 17 December 2015 (UTC)

Initialism vs. acronym vs. abbreviation vs. contraction

I'm trying to figure out which Russian terms should be classified as initialisms, acronyms, contractions, or plain abbreviations. For example:

  • комсомол (komsomol): Short for Коммунисти́ческий сою́з молодёжи: These sorts of abbreviations are common in Russian. I've been classifying them as acronyms. Correct?
  • п. г. т. (p. g. t.): Short for посёлок городско́го ти́па. Is this an initialism or just an abbreviation? What about the alternative form пгт (pgt)?
  • ноут (nout): Short for ноутбук. Is this a contraction or just an abbreviation, or what?
  • т/г (t/g): Short for теку́щего го́да. Initialism, abbreviation, ...? This has an alternative form т.г. (t.g.).

Comments? Benwing2 (talk) 05:53, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

Комсомол is an acronym according to sense 2. That kind of acronym is rare in English, but common in Russian, German, and Japanese. The entries for п. г. т. and т/г say they're pronounced letter-for-letter, making them initialisms. Ноут is a {{clipping}}. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 06:59, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
What do you think of creating a new template for syllabic abbreviations? — Ungoliant (falai) 14:11, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Me personally or Wiktionarians as a group? I don't have a strong opinion one way or the other. I don't even know if there's a technical term for them. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:58, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Everyone. Syllabic abbreviation is the technical term. — Ungoliant (falai) 21:05, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
@Ungoliant MMDCCLXIV It's fine with me if you want to create this template. If others think it's a good idea, I'll use it for the corresponding Russian terms. Benwing2 (talk) 03:05, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
I would reserve "abbreviation" for things that are pronounced like the full word even when they're written abbreviated, like English Mr., which is always pronounced "mister", not "murr" or "em ar". —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:07, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

Inflection of will

Are the transitive and intransitive senses also defective? — Ungoliant (falai) 09:49, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

It's rather confusing how we have the same sense under two etymologies. Anyway, these senses are clearly not defective ("If God had willed [it]") and use the conjugation of Etymology 1. Smurrayinchester (talk) 12:00, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Indeed, is this accurate that there are two verbs will with the same meaning and same conjugation but with two different etymologies? Also why in the world don't we have the future tense meaning at the top? I couldn't find it an thought we lacked it for a second there. Renard Migrant (talk) 14:01, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
There are two verbs, yes: one is the auxilliary will (which never uses the third person sing wills and past willed) from OE willan/wyllan = to desire; wish (archaic); used for the future tense (past = would); and the other is from OE willian = to will; have the will to, which is conjugated like a normal weak verb (past = willed), and which is a derivative of the noun (OE willa) Leasnam (talk) 15:31, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
But that wasn't my question. What you're saying I'm not disputing at all. Renard Migrant (talk) 15:35, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Oh sorry then. my bad Leasnam (talk) 15:36, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
will, as a regular weak verb, is a denominative verb, derived from the noun will. So it's comparable to, say, question. —CodeCat 15:36, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
@ Renard Migrant, I agree, I too found it odd that the *normal* use of will was at Etym_2. It should be moved up imo Leasnam (talk) 15:39, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Even if accurate it seems like we're putting etymology ahead of definition which sucks. If some of the sense are from both etymologies, create a third etymology header. It's not unprecedented albeit I can't name a specific example, I have seen an etymology 3 that says 'from a combination of etymologies 1 and 2'. Renard Migrant (talk) 13:53, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
Or we can stop nesting part of speech under etymology. —CodeCat 22:12, 16 December 2015 (UTC)


Do we have a tag for ...wow, how do I say this...those words which are rarely used and sound overly edudite, like obfuscatory? No one really uses that word, and English learners need to be cautioned that using words like that can make them sound, well, rather ridiculous :/ Leasnam (talk) 16:06, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

Well, we have "rare", "very rare", and "formal"; they could be used in combination I guess. Or we could create a new label like "ten-dollar word". —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:42, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
  • “No one”? Heck, I've used the word myself in conversation, albeit somewhat for humorous effect. I'll admit I'm a general geek and word nerd, but everyone around me understood the term.
That said, I support the addition of labels to clarify, with an eye to non-native speakers. Even better would be labels plus usage notes. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 20:02, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
@Eirikr: I'll point out that fessitude was recently declared dictionary-only, and it is a word that I have used several times in conversation. —JohnC5 20:24, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
@Eirikr, well, not literally no one...but you get what I mean...we've all heard the English-as-second-language users say things using words that well, just don't sound right. I think a tag {{erudite}} would be very beneficial in this case, along with a clarification that use of the word outside of normal conversation might cause the user to sound presumptuous and/or unnatural ? Leasnam (talk) 21:21, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
The problem is that reality is much more complicated than a scale of rarity. A word could be rare/erudite/formal/whatever in most contexts, but still be the most fitting word in some contexts, even some that occur in normal colloquial conversation. --WikiTiki89 21:31, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Exactly, and this is why rare/formal would not necessarily work.
Here, this is a perfect example of what drove this for me today: (from an anon):
the IPA pronunciation guide is obfuscatory. Pls use a phonetic guide like BAN lees.
(this is found at Talk:banlieue) ...I knew exactly what the anon meant (he/she meant it was unclear or confusing), but that was just the wrong word at the wrong time. This person would get at least a snicker from any native English speaker. I think we do our users a serious disservice if we allow them to use words like this without warning them. I felt embarrassed when I read it. Leasnam (talk) 21:44, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
Of course. I'm not saying we shouldn't do this, but that it is a much harder task than this discussion let on. --WikiTiki89 21:47, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
The IP address that left that message geolocates to New Jersey, so they probably are a native English speaker. The fact that they consider IPA more obfuscatory than useless respellings like "BAN lees" also makes me unable to take them particularly seriously. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 22:08, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
I would agree that to the average person, IPA is more "obfuscatory" than a phonetic respelling. However, I don't know of any comprehensive way to respell French words in an English phonetic way (I'm assuming the anon was referring to the French section of banlieu, since the English section does not have IPA). --WikiTiki89 22:14, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
I agree he must have been referring to the French section, and "BAN lees" is a pretty obfuckinfuscatory way of respelling /bɑ̃ljø/. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 22:35, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

good and dead, good and deceased

In Disney's Beauty and the Beast, the angry mob sings: "We're not coming home / 'Til he's dead / Good and dead" and later "Good and deceased". Are we lacking a sense of good that covers this? --Daniel Carrero (talk) 21:05, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

It's good and. Equinox 21:09, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
And searching for "good and dead" puts [[good and]] as the second entry on the failed-search page, right behind a page that has a citation that includes "good and dead". DCDuring TALK 23:21, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
It's an excellent example of how you only find what you're looking for if you search the exact right title. Renard Migrant (talk) 13:49, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
I thought it was a good example of how you find almost exactly what you're looking for if you search for exactly what you want. DCDuring TALK 14:34, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
Well, provided you know the entry is at good and. What if you don't? Your reasoning is circular, provided you search for the right entry title that we have, you get the right entry. But what if you don't? Renard Migrant (talk) 14:49, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
It seems DCDuring meant that I would find what I was looking for if I searched for "good and dead". BTW, that sense is duplicated at the entry good: "(colloquial) With "and", extremely. / The soup is good and hot.‎" It seems "good and dead" means "utterly dead", as an intensifier. One can't be literally "extremely" dead by comparison between different amounts of deadness. Perhaps good and should have a separate, figurative, sense, for the intensifier. --Daniel Carrero (talk) 15:56, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure that is what DCDuring meant. BTW, very dead, more dead than, and even twice as dead are abundantly citable. It is a common exploitation of modifiers normally considered noncomparable to use them in comparisons and with degree and fully quantitative modifiers. DCDuring TALK 16:31, 16 December 2015 (UTC)


Can the really be pronounced as the neutral tone? Is this variant more common than the standard nǎlǐ?

My other question is, why doesn't the pronunciation box of include the erhua form? Entries like 电影 include the erhua form of the respective term.  WikiWinters ☯ 韦安智  03:17, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

哪裡哪里 (nǎlǐ) can be pronounced as "nǎli" and it's the common dictionary pinyin. Note that () is originally third tone - , so because of the tone sandhi, the real phonetic pinyin is "náli" (nǎlǐ->nálǐ->náli).
哪兒哪儿 (nǎr) is etymologically an erhua form of () but 哪 is not used on its own as a question word "where". It's either 哪裡哪里 (nǎlǐ) or 哪兒哪儿 (nǎr) (in areas where erhua is acceptable). It's a similar case with 那裡那里 (nàlǐ, nàli) and 那兒那儿 (nàr) ("there"). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 04:14, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
@WikiWinters Pinging you in case you missed my answer. A better question would be - is () still pronounced as "lǐ"? My dictionaries only give the neutral tone variant. It helps to understand the reason for seemingly strange tone sandhi (nǎ -> ná), though in front of a neutral tone (caused by the original tone third tone). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 07:26, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
@Atitarev Wow, I never considered the aspect of tone sandhi when I wrote this question. Perhaps this should be mentioned as a note on the page. Regardless, what can we do to let Chinese learners know that 哪儿 is the form of 哪里? I understand that the "true" erhua form of 哪里 would be 哪里儿, which is obviously wrong, but maybe an additional note could be included. Right now, it only says that 哪儿 is the "colloquial" form.  WikiWinters ☯ 韦安智  21:01, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
@Atitarev Oh, and one more thing: I often see erhua forms in Chinese dictionaries listed as, for example, "wár," instead of "wánr," to reflect the omission of the "n" sound. Is this a format that we could adopt? Thanks.  WikiWinters ☯ 韦安智  21:04, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
@WikiWinters, Atitarev The "wánr" notation has to do with how pinyin orthographic rules deal with erhua. It might be useful to have the "actual" pronunciation added, just like how the tone sandhi is handled. Also, is 哪兒 really erhua-ed 哪裡? Same with 今天 and 今兒. — justin(r)leung { (t...) | c=› } 23:26, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
@WikiWinters, Justinrleung. I also oppose removing the original pinyin (before -r) because it's standard and removing -n and -ng would create unnecessary duplications. Learners and users of pinyin know how to pronounce erhua words. @WikiWinters, what are you going to do with words like 冰兒冰儿 (bīngr)? Pinyin "bīr" [piəɻ⁵⁵] is not the same as "bīngr" [pjɤ̃ɻ⁵⁵]. Simply removing finals preceding -r is not going to work. Yes, Justinrleung is right. 哪兒 is not erhua of 哪裡 but a synonym. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:12, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
@Atitarev Interesting. Where did you get those two IPA pronunciations from? The materials I've read have always said they were pronounced the same.  WikiWinters ☯ 韦安智  02:56, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
@WikiWinters You must be misreading the materials. In ngr, the ng surfaces as nasalization of the previous vowel (whereas in nr the n disappears). Benwing2 (talk) 03:09, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
What Benwing2 said.--Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:21, 17 December 2015 (UTC)
@Benwing2, Atitarev, Justinrleung I apologize. I reached the point recently when native speakers would tell me I sounded like a native speaker, something that hadn't happened before. However, I'm making the transition to a more Putonghua-inspired accent, and I'd like to reach that same point of nativeness with erhua added in. I'm going to have to look more deeply into the phonetics of it. I appreciate the help.  WikiWinters ☯ 韦安智  00:38, 18 December 2015 (UTC)
That's fine, no problem at all. We were talking about the entry structure and language policies, though, not our abilities to speak. Congratulations on your achievements! --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:52, 18 December 2015 (UTC)


Could we attest confetto in English as the singular of confetti? ---> Tooironic (talk) 07:35, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

We have a special page for requests like this. --WikiTiki89 14:52, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
Isn't RFV for entries that already exist? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 15:14, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
I suppose I should have clicked on the entry then. If only there was a way to make it already exist... --WikiTiki89 15:46, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
google books:"a|the confetto" suggests it's borderline. I think you can get two then to find an unambiguous third one would be hard to impossible. The sweet pastry i.e. confetto#Italian might be attestable as well. This is also why I think 3 citations is a bit too few. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:26, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

real world

I have suggested an antonym on 10/21/2015: happenstantiality

The author has suggested to delete it assuming there is nothing but the "real" world —This unsigned comment was added by Ssteve90266 (talkcontribs).

Is there something you'd like to discuss? Renard Migrant (talk) 16:28, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

Category:Salad dressings/Category:en:Salad dressings

  1. Do you think we should have this category?
  2. If so, could a coding expert create those categories, as daughters of Category:Salads and Category:Condiments? Purplebackpack89 21:18, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

Dillusion topic is missing add the information about dillusion

Dillusion and others kind of dillusion details are to be added

Declension of syllabus

On wiktionary syllabus is classed as a second declension masculine noun however some sources class it as a fourth declension feminine noun. The nominative of both ends in -us. As the second declension is much more common, many people jump to the conclusion that a noun ending in -us is 2nd declension masculine, but in this case I am inclined to disagree. There is somewhat of an online war as to if the noun is 2nd or 4th declension. Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syllabus#Etymology) classes it as 4th declension. Does anybody know for certain the case of this noun?

I know for certain that Lewis and Short believe it to be masculine. I don't have ready access to the Oxford Latin Dictionary, which is newer and has the benefit of more than a hundred years of additional scholarly effort. DCDuring TALK 17:07, 18 December 2015 (UTC)
I also know for certain that the Google n-gram corpus of books shows syllabuses to be in sharp decline relative to syllabi. I've often wondered why the advocates of Latinate correctness should ever allow syllabi, being a Latin nominative, to be the object of a verb or a preposition in English running text. DCDuring TALK 17:20, 18 December 2015 (UTC)
People who prefer -i plurals are not always "advocates of Latinate correctness" might not even know anything about cases at all. --WikiTiki89 18:08, 18 December 2015 (UTC)
I own a copy of the Oxford Latin Dictionary; syllabus isn't in it at all. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:51, 18 December 2015 (UTC)
See “syllabus” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2019. for more, ultimately citing the OED. DCDuring TALK 19:28, 18 December 2015 (UTC)


Is the plural of Lenny really Lennys or is it Lennies? I thought if it ended with a y then the plural must end in ies. 01:17, 19 December 2015 (UTC)

That doesn't apply to most proper nouns, particularly not to names of people. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 06:28, 19 December 2015 (UTC)

That's a silly looking subject...

Anyway, I wasn't exactly sure how to fix this, but Template:width-usage (redirected to via Template:fullwidth-usage) breaks with the input of ".", as seen on that page at .#Usage notes. Thus I'm reporting this issue here; a buck to anyone who can fix it. -Xbony2 (talk) 02:13, 19 December 2015 (UTC)

I have modified the template, but it's a little hard to see what's being linked to now. DTLHS (talk) 02:17, 19 December 2015 (UTC)
I added quotations to it to make it more noticeable. -Xbony2 (talk) 14:00, 20 December 2015 (UTC)


May I ask how to pronounce this in Japanese if possible? --Malaysiaboy (talk) 11:07, 20 December 2015 (UTC)

It’s the Chinese notation of an Indonesian: 陶菲克. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 13:21, 20 December 2015 (UTC)
In Mandarin Chinese, it's "Táofēikè" (陶菲克), transliteration of the name "Taufik". In Japanese, it's written "タウフィック" (Taufikku). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 13:29, 20 December 2015 (UTC)

Trigger-happy translation into Spanish

The Spanish translation of trigger-happy currently provided is "gatillo fácil". That is a noun phrase, so it basically works as a noun, not an adjective. I'd say a more precise equivalent is "de gatillo fácil". Kind regards. -- 23:06, 21 December 2015 (UTC)

sciō descendants

Does anyone know of direct descendants of the Latin verb sciō (I know) in French and/or Italian? Those languages seem to use descenants of the verb sapiō (I am wise) for verbs with that meaning (French savoir, Italian sapere). I couldn't find any such descendant verbs here on Wiktionary. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 15:54, 22 December 2015 (UTC)

The Spanish verb is also dubious. I don't see it in dictionaries. DTLHS (talk) 16:08, 22 December 2015 (UTC)
I don't think there's any direct descendant in French. --Fsojic (talk) 17:50, 22 December 2015 (UTC)
What disqualifies science? My Petit Robert dates it to 1080, which would seem too early for it to have passed through any other language on its way from Latin to French.—Odysseus1479 (talk) 21:14, 19 January 2016 (UTC)
That's still 1,000 years after Classical Latin, lots of time for borrowings from Latin into French. For example, aveugle is an early borrowing from Latin that may have been borrowed around the 6th or 7th century AD, and displaced the word inherited from caecus. Benwing2 (talk) 22:43, 19 January 2016 (UTC)
It isn't directly descended from the verb, it's descended from scientia, which is a noun derived from the present participle, sciens, of the verb. The term scientia isn't the participle itself, since the only participle forms that match it are plural where the noun is singular. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:15, 20 January 2016 (UTC)
Only indirectly in its influence on the old spelling of sçavoir. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:14, 22 December 2015 (UTC)
The Franzözisches Etymologisches Wörterbuch has no entry for scire. Volume 11, page 313 goes from scipio to scirros. Renard Migrant (talk) 13:07, 23 December 2015 (UTC)


When looking to see if a plural of acumen was attestable (it doesn't seem to be), I stumbled across another use of the word, which seems to refer to a part of a plant. Could anybody define this sense and add it? Andrew Sheedy (talk) 23:24, 22 December 2015 (UTC)

After looking around, I found a definition in a botany dictionary. I'll add it shortly. (I should have known better than to post in the Tea Room before searching around some more.) Andrew Sheedy (talk) 23:50, 22 December 2015 (UTC)
I am uncertain as to the accuracy of the third definition, and especially unsure about the exact sense used in the quotations I used. It seems that acumen, when used in that sense, generally refers to crayfish or other such things, but I'm unsure. I found no evidence for the "especially that of the ischium" part of the definition, aside from the fact that it was mentioned in the dictionary I linked to above. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 03:13, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

Iron and steel will bend and bow

The first etymology section of bow is the one that sounds like "beau" and rhymes with "go" and "so". In the verb section of this etymology, are senses 3, 4, and 5 (illustrated by sentences like "The whole nation bowed their necks to the worst kind of tyranny", "Adversities do more bow men's minds to religion", and "Cronenberg’s 'Cosmopolis' bows in Cannes this week"). Are these senses really pronounced this way? Don't they rather belong to the second etymology section, the one that sounds like "bough" and rhymes with "cow" and "how"? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 11:40, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

I agree about 3, 4, & 5. I wonder as well about sense 2 and the associated noun sense, but I have no confidence even in my own pronunciation of those. DCDuring TALK 12:09, 23 December 2015 (UTC)
I didn't even notice before, but sense 5 under etymology 1 ("to premiere") is basically identical to sense 2 under etymology 2 ("to debut"). —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 12:49, 23 December 2015 (UTC)
On mature reflection my problem with sense 2 was due to haste. One kind of bending (taking a bow) involves being anchored on one end, the other (departure from straightness, taking the shape of a bow) on both ends. A tree might be said to bow (bough) in the wind in the first sense. A shelf might bow (beau) under the weight of books.
We could probably find other such duplication and confusion wherever there are multiple etymologies. DCDuring TALK 15:41, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

They are not having it

I wonder if this meaning is reflected anywhere in Wiktionary. I looked up "have" but it seemingly makes no mention of it. --CopperKettle (talk) 06:56, 25 December 2015 (UTC)

  • Yes, this form of words seems to only be used in the negative. It means "to not believe something", "to not want to cooperate with something" and similar meanings. I'm not at all sure what the lemma should be. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:56, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
Out last definition is "allow". I think that covers it, though "accept" might be better. The citation also has a negative (not). If others agree we should include a citation or usage example containing "not having (it)". In the example CopperKettle has found and other instances of this precise construction, it does get its meaning by anaphora/deixis and does not seem integral to the expression.
MWOnline has a cluster of definitions that also would seem to include the usage:
6 a : to experience especially by submitting to, undergoing, or suffering <I have a cold>
b : to make the effort to perform (an action) or engage in (an activity) <have a look at that cut>
c : to entertain in the mind <have an opinion>
IMO, it is also related to the expression (term?, collocation?) have none of ("to refuse to have anything to do with") [a run-in at have on MWOnline]. DCDuring TALK 10:12, 25 December 2015 (UTC)

wet, sticky snow

Is there an English word for the type of wet, sticky snow that is suitable for making snowmen (it's nuoska in Finnish)?

snowmannable? --Stubborn Pen (talk) 11:46, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
I doubt it. The dry kind is sometimes just called powder, especially by skiers. Equinox 11:47, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
proper snow. Keith the Koala (talk) 12:26, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
We (NY area) called snow suitable for making snowballs "good packing snow". DCDuring TALK 15:00, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, that's it. By googling "packing snow" one gets loads of references, e.g. this: Types of snow. Which leads to next question: should we have an entry for packing snow? --Hekaheka (talk) 23:17, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
When I was of a snowman-building age, we simply called it snowman snow, and that seems to be common among the younger folk where I live. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 20:59, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
@Hekaheka The common expression "The snow made (for) good packing" makes me think that it is "good packing" + "snow", not "good" + "packing snow". And "good packing" itself seems SoP to me. OTOH "good packing snow" seems like it might be a perfectly good translation for nuoska, provided packing links to pack (to increase the density of), syn. compress (def from MWOnline) or pack (To press together; compact firmly) (AHD). AFAICT, we lack either definition of pack#Verb or any definition that includes or is included in either of those definitions. DCDuring TALK 00:47, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring In books, only a fraction of usages of "packing snow" seem to include "good", according to BGC [4] --Hekaheka (talk) 10:17, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
I'm not going to fight it based solely on my own idiolect. Even for me it would be a close call. DCDuring TALK 12:12, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
Wet snow, heavy snow, slushy snow, a shoveler's nightmare, etc. There is no single fixed term. --WikiTiki89 01:03, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
@Wikitiki89 Yes, but wet, heavy and slushy snow are often - and I would say more often, from my experience - "unpackable" than "packable". --Hekaheka (talk) 10:21, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, we just had some slushy snow where I live (first snow of the season, finally), so I just had that kind of snow on my mind. I guess "sticky snow" would be better then, but still, there is no single fixed term. --WikiTiki89 17:36, 30 December 2015 (UTC)


Two verb senses are glossed "apocryphal". What does that mean? No actual usage? If so we should not include them. Equinox 17:48, 26 December 2015 (UTC)

I think so. Those meanings are often claimed to be the etymology of yiff in the sexual sense, but I have yet to see any proper references for that. Also on the topic of this word: definition 3 days "said of animals, especially foxes", but I think the term's most frequently used of, and associated with, furries, and is only rarely used to refer to humans and real animals (except possibly foxes - I don't know about that). I think that's noteworthy. The noun definitions do stress the furry aspect. Eishiya (talk) 23:57, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
RFV would sort this out, no? Renard Migrant (talk) 12:25, 31 December 2015 (UTC)


There is a very dubious edit note claiming that colonel does not lose its R sound in non-rhotic accents or something around there. I checked several dictionaries which say that the R sound in "colonel" is deleted in non-rhotic dialects. Is the edit note wrong? Hillcrest98 (talk) 03:39, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

The html comment that you removed said '"colonel" does not belong on this page as it is not a rhyme in rhotic accents'- not the same thing at all. Now, I've always considered kernel and colonel to be complete homophones in my US rhotic accent, and I don't remember ever hearing it otherwise (well, maybe once or twice with "l" instead of 'r" as a spelling pronunciation by someone who had never heard it actually pronounced), so I disagree with that statement. Still, it was added by the person who set up the rhymes pages in the first place. Since he speaks a non-rhotic variety himself, he may not be familiar enough with rhotic pronunciation to know how it's really pronounced. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:32, 28 December 2015 (UTC)
I misread, oops. Every single dictionary I checked calls it a homophone of kernel. Ditto. Hillcrest98 (talk) 05:18, 28 December 2015 (UTC)
I'm asking for citations that agree with the HTML comment I deleted. What phonological feature differentiates these two in rhotic accents, I wonder? Hillcrest98 (talk) 05:15, 28 December 2015 (UTC)
I agree that colonel is a homophone of kernel in rhotic accents. Rhotic accents don't have /ɜː/ not followed by /ɹ/. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 07:46, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

the word is coined

what is THE WORD IS COINED in latin

Verbum novātur.Aɴɢʀ (talk) 11:06, 28 December 2015 (UTC)


Sense 1: the definition is either iffy or needs expanding. Donnanz (talk) 13:33, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

Perhaps along the lines of MWOnline's:
1: the act or an instance of furnishing or authenticating with documents
2a: the provision of documents in substantiation; also : documentary evidence
  b(1): the use of historical documents (2): conformity to historical or objective facts (3): the provision of footnotes, appendices, or addenda referring to or containing documentary evidence
DCDuring TALK 14:21, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
We could just copy over our own definition of the verb document with "the act of" before it. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 14:22, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Good idea. That would be a good base for subsequent improvement.
We need to cover both the act of documenting and the result of this act, i.e. physical (or electronic) documentation. Renard Migrant (talk) 18:12, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
  • I may as well weigh in with Oxford's entry for comparison [5]. Donnanz (talk) 20:32, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
I propose the following:
  1. The act of recording information in a document. (new definition)
  2. Information recorded in a document. (replacing the current first definition)
Ungoliant (falai) 20:57, 29 December 2015 (UTC)


Also, the plural documentations seems to me to be a non-native-speakers' mistake, which, no matter how often made, is an error. DCDuring TALK 14:27, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

The English plural was added by Equinox (who else?), but it could be quietly removed, leaving the French entry. Donnanz (talk) 14:48, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
I "quietly" removed the link from documentation to documentations, but removing the entry would be an RfD matter, as it is attestable. I am not at all sure that it should be deleted as it seems like a common error. But as it is not a misspelling, I'm not sure what the documentations entry should look like. Deciding this openly might lead to an approach that could be used for similarly erroneous plurals of uncountable terms. DCDuring TALK 15:43, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
It's acceptable in Indian English, like softwares, etc. Just give it the appropriate gloss. Equinox 16:13, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
It's definitely not uncountable; google books:"a good documentation" has loads of of singular use. The problem with google books:"documentations" (and without quotation marks the same problem) is that it seems to have hit but it's not highlighting the use of the word documentations. If you limit the search to preview available you get enough hits to pass it, and basing it purely on author names there seem to be plenty of native uses
"Documentations of these stories take varying theoretical perspectives and include those that are basically ethnographic, those that take a psychoanalytic approach and those that discuss sand drawing in the context of Aboriginal art." (Jennifer Green, 2014, →ISBN
So we know neither RFD nor RFV is an option, as it will pass without any problems. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:14, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
I don't think we know very much yet, certainly not enough to do a creditable job with the entry. Do all definitions of uncountable documentation have a corresponding countable definition? Is there really some greater acceptability of countable usage in India or other Englishes? DCDuring TALK 21:52, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
I note that Oxford (online) calls documentation a mass noun. DCDuring TALK 21:58, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Well, our aim is to include all English usage while some dictionaries just want to include common usage. This is why I hate the lemming test so much; different dictionaries have different approaches. I'm sure they're no less capable of finding countable use than I am, they just choose not to include it because it's minority usage. Renard Migrant (talk) 22:03, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Our approach fails to adequately label and note the usage we find, often giving poor, rare, obsolete, and dialectal variants the same weight as the overwhelmingly more common. Our eyes are bigger than our stomach: we can't adequately cover what we wish we could. DCDuring TALK 23:10, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes using {{en-noun}} you can't specify that the plural is rare or very rare, though, on documentations you can. Renard Migrant (talk) 21:20, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
People also tend to think that countability is about whether there's a plural or not, which misses the point somewhat as you can have countable singular use. Google Books Ngrams in 1999 has documentation more common than documentations by about 374:1, but some of those uses of documentation may be countable singular use rather than uncountable use. Renard Migrant (talk) 21:31, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
Comparing "many documentations" and "much documentation" shows ratios that I estimate to be between 1:50 and 1:150. About half of the usage of many documentations looks to be by non-native speakers.
What would one documentation be? All of the documents documenting one instance of something? One document recording possibly many instances of something? One instance/mention in a document documenting one instance of something? I contrast this with most countable terms for which what constitutes a unit is usually much clearer, though some ambiguities may arise. DCDuring TALK 22:25, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
The previous question is a sincere effort to understand what the countable sense(s) of documentation are. To me they feel like errors, but apparently not to at least a minority of authors. DCDuring TALK 14:17, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
  • The Jennifer Green quote (above) could easily have used documentation instead of documentations and still meant the same, so perhaps the blame can be laid at the door of authors who use the plural. I keep finding plurals of mass nouns that have been entered by Equinox; mildnesses and opennesses are two I found this morning. So the problem seems to have been caused mainly by one contributor. Donnanz (talk) 12:10, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
By problem, I assume you mean exactly as specified in WT:CFI (e.g. line 1 "all words in all languages"). Renard Migrant (talk) 12:20, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, "all words in all languages" seems to be misinterpreted by those who fail to take into account whether it's good grammar or not, in English or any other language. I don't place much faith in the "attestability" of plurals of invariable mass nouns, it's a question of whether it's good English (or other language). This is where we go astray. Donnanz (talk) 12:39, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
Donnanz, it is you who are the "problem", with your snobbish anti-Americanism and parochial refusal to recognise other varieties known to all linguists (the most cursory Google Books search finds "documentations" is commonplace in Indian English). If you think my entries are bad, then RFV them, where they will pass. Do not derail the Tea Room with pathetic snarky asides. Equinox 12:44, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
I have to agree, your objection to these entries is nothing to do with evidence, it's just that you don't like them. I could just as easily pick one of your entries like mildhet and say look at that, it's fucking rubbish entry, what can we do about these rubbish entries? Renard Migrant (talk) 13:01, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
Equinox ought to get his facts right in his personal attack, I'm not anti-American, I prefer to use British English and that's not a crime, thank God. Some quotes from Indian English to back up the assertion would help, from the "Times of India" perhaps. And mildhet is verifiable, so what is RM on about? I didn't create this thread for the plural, by the way. Donnanz (talk) 13:21, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
My point is you're attacking documentations contrary to the evidence. And you can attack anything if it's ok to attack it even when the evidence supports the opposite conclusion. Renard Migrant (talk) 14:07, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
@Donnanz re: "good grammar". Although grammar changes less quickly that vocabulary and definitions, it does change. In our definitions we should stick to a conservative notion of what constitutes good grammar to help keep the meaning as clear as possible for as many users as possible. In citations new grammar (and new collocations) can help us find new meanings of words or may simply reflect changes in grammar or dialectal or register differences. For example, in a previous case, I had been unaware that there was a countable sense of information, which word was often used as a perfect exemplar of a word that was only used uncountably. DCDuring TALK 14:32, 31 December 2015 (UTC)


From bulla#English

  1. (historical) In ancient Rome, a kind of amulet or boss.

What sense of boss is this? I can't find an obvious candidate from our definitions. Also, sigh, we have the most common meanings last, like we usually do. Renard Migrant (talk) 18:10, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

My Latin dictionary's definitions of bulla include: "boss, stud, knob", so I guess it's etymology 1, senses 1, 3, and 5. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:12, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
"Amulet or boss" still bothers me. Is it like a bulge you wear round your neck or what? Renard Migrant (talk) 13:03, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
A "shield boss" is the bulge in the center, usually behind which is a handle. It is nothing more than a boss on a shield. So as an amulet, it is specifically one which is round and domed in shape. --Catsidhe (verba, facta) 13:13, 31 December 2015 (UTC)

rise from the dead

Should we have an entry for this, or is it too SOPpy? --WikiTiki89 18:23, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

Rise already has a sense that covers the idea of resurrection, so "from the dead" seems to only serve as clarification (and may itself merit an entry). I'm not opposed to adding an entry for the whole phrase, though. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 18:54, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Note that we do have come back from the dead. Maybe we just need an entry for from the dead. You can say "He is looking at us from the dead." or "He spoke to us from the dead.", but "dead" by itself cannot be used as a noun in that way. The sense in "the dead of night" is very similar, but I don't think it can be used for literal death. Also, you cannot say "He went back to the dead." or anything so, "from" is an essential part of the phrase. --WikiTiki89 19:29, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Re: come back from the dead, "[t]o return after being presumed dead" is particularly unclear. I think it means to regain consciousness after being presumed dead. Is that really distinct from sense #1 if so? Perhaps ascertaining what it exactly means would be a good start. Renard Migrant (talk) 22:06, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure it just means to come back to life (after being dead). The part about being "presumed" dead is just a figurative usage. --WikiTiki89 22:09, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

unbeknown, unbeknownst

According to the entry at unbeknownst, the word is "probably" from unbeknown +‎ -st. However, the etymology at the entry for unbeknown states that "unbeknown" is a back-formation of "unbeknownst." Which of these is correct? Andrew Sheedy (talk) 20:55, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

unbeknownst (attested 1833, according to etymonline) was formed from unbeknown (attested 1630s, according to etymonline). According to etymonline, unbeknownst became dominant over the course of the 19th century, but Ngrams begs to differ. Ngrams also makes it seem unlikely that the return of unbeknown could be due to a recent back-formation, because its use has remained relatively steady, although there is a spike beginning in the year 2000, which could be due to back-formation. --WikiTiki89 21:06, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
Alright, I have corrected the etymology at unbeknown per etymonline. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 22:45, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

wear and tear

How do you call the phenomenon in which little "knots" of fluff develop on the surface of a knitted fabric, like in this [[6]] picture? And what are the "knots" called, individually or collectively? --Hekaheka (talk) 10:10, 30 December 2015 (UTC)

pilling and pills. --Catsidhe (verba, facta) 10:21, 30 December 2015 (UTC)

in the driving seat

(and: "in the driver's seat") I think this may be worth an entry, and can be idiomatic [7]. I think there's a fat chance of any entry for just "driver's seat" or "driving seat" surviving without being an idiom, because of the way the ever-so-sad SoP policy is implemented. Donnanz (talk) 18:33, 30 December 2015 (UTC)

driver's seat at OneLook Dictionary Search, in the driver's seat at OneLook Dictionary Search, and be in the driver's seat at OneLook Dictionary Search show that all three are used in some dictionaries. (I didn't check which ones were just redirects.)
I've always thought that the driver's seat was "a position of active control" or, possibly, merely one "of advantage". That's not quite what other dictionaries have, emphasizing authority. Is this just a difference between use for a dynamic situation rather than for a fixed state of affairs? DCDuring TALK 19:46, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
Did you look at driving seat too? It may be more British. In Collins [8] and [9]. Basically it means being in control of something, as Oxford suggests. Donnanz (talk) 20:07, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
I came across the Norwegian equivalents "i førersetet" (Bokmål) and "i førarsetet" (Nynorsk), that's what started me thinking. Donnanz (talk) 20:14, 30 December 2015 (UTC)

Homonyms: πιο, ποιο (Greek)

In the entry πιο, there is a section "Homonyms", with the item "ποιο (poio) (neutral of ποιος)".

Is this correct? Is this something that should be moved to the section "Pronunciation"? --Daniel Carrero (talk) 09:34, 31 December 2015 (UTC)

I think it's either a homophone or a homeophone, but clearly not a homonym as it isn't spelled the same! Renard Migrant (talk) 11:40, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
Homophones are generally listed in the Pronunciation section using the {{homophone}} template. I've done that at πιο now, assuming in good faith that it's true. (Certainly οι and ι are usually pronounced the same, but I don't know for sure that that's the case here.) —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 11:02, 2 January 2016 (UTC)

Pitiable connotation obsolete for 可愛い:かわいい:kawaii?

The かわいい and 可愛い pages both assert that the pitiable connotation is obsolete but I disagree. I frequently hear Japanese people use the term かわいいそう:kawaiisou as an adjective meaning pitiable (see -そう#Suffix:-sō:-sou). It may also be used as an exclamation "かわいいそう!" meaning "Oh, You poor thing!" or "Oh, the poor thing!"; like "¡Pobrecito!" in Spanish. Warmest Regards, :)—thecurran Speak your mind my past 16:27, 31 December 2015 (UTC)

(Incidentally, 可愛いそう (kawaii sō), with the long ii sound on kawaii, would indicate reported speech: you've heard that something is cute. そう () after an -i adjective but with a short or missing i indicates “seems like [ADJ]” in most cases, such as 恐ろしそう (osoroshisō, it seems awful / terrifying) or 寒そう (samusō, it seems cold) -- aside from idiomatic uses like かわいそう (kawaisō) where the combined term's meaning has changed over time.)
@Shinji, do you have anything to add as a native speaker? ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 01:01, 1 January 2016 (UTC)
Today most Japanese people don’t find the etymological link between かわいい and かわいそう. They are just separate words. かわいい is used to directly describe someone or something cute visually, and it can hardly be used with そう (“seem by looking”). You don’t say 赤そうだ (“it seems red”) either. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 02:40, 2 January 2016 (UTC)