Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (1677 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] English locution correction (was Re: Clinging to Microsoft (was Re: Why openSUSE is less popular than Ubuntu?)
On 12/20/2011 3:28 PM, Dennis Gallien wrote:
The imaginative element is in the spontaneous invention of the word. The
entertaining element is in how it makes my English-teacher spouse climb the

Well it shouldn't.
Spontaneous invention of words made of other words and word parts is a hallmark
English (and German, so I'm told), and has been around forever.

Just as the phrase "Verbing weirds the language." makes perfect sense, adding
a prefix (or two) and a suffix (or three) to build a new word is well within the
"rules" of English, and is just part of English's eclectic nature.

Unlike French, there is no official list of approved words, and even
dictionaries are merely evolving documents of points in time.

Which is why the obsession over the current use of "begging the question"
is largely pedantry run amok. Usage changes over time.

More so in English, perhaps, but not exclusively. To date, this has
not presented any significant problem for English as a language, and it is
not likely to present any problem as long as English is in use. Should it
fall into disuse, linguists studying its entombed remains might be confused
for all of half a day, but even this is not unusual in the study of ancient

The entire issue revolves around a largely archaic use of the word "beg",
which is used almost NOWHERE in English today or for the past hundred
years other than in this SINGLE phrase "beg the question".

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