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Idiosyncrasies Of The English Language.

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date

Dermot

Dermot Report 27 Apr 2013 10:41

The English language is a minefield, full of words that look & sound alike but mean different things in different circumstances.

Here are a few examples to get this thread started:-

*She gave birth in the ship's berth.
*A Cossack rarely wears a cassock.
*The Americans prefer a check above a cheque - apparently.
*There are few hungry residents in Hungary.
*Some idols are really idle.
*You should know my decision when I said 'no'.
*I need to kneed some bread this afternoon.
*My niece is very nice.
*Wait here until I check your weight.

KittytheLearnerCook

KittytheLearnerCook Report 27 Apr 2013 10:44

I know what you mean.............or should that be I no watt ewe mean? :-S

Sharron

Sharron Report 27 Apr 2013 11:13

There is a line in an Irish song that I always find interesting, and I can't even remember the title or the rest of the song at the moment, but the line is :-

"Where the strawberry beds run down to the Liffey."

Those berries are not made of straw,they do not sleep in beds and if they did,could the beds run? A Liffey could be anything too.

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 27 Apr 2013 11:22


I always wonder at the difficulties a foreigner must encounter with the different pronunciations of the letters 'gh' .
Take a sentence such as the following...........
Not a tough thought - I love the sight of blossom hanging from the boughs of the trees in Loughborough. :-0

Annx

Annx Report 27 Apr 2013 11:31

Yes, Karen, Loughborough is not far from me and I have heard of australians asking the way to Loogabarrooga............

Sharron

Sharron Report 27 Apr 2013 11:34

Halnaker is always a good one here. It is near Goodwood so people do mention it.

(Hannicker)

There is a landmark windmill on top of the hill there which is often known locally as Winnicker Handmill.

eRRolSheep

eRRolSheep Report 27 Apr 2013 11:35

English is not a phonetic language.

Do you know what "ghoti" really says?

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 27 Apr 2013 11:39

FISH
gh, pronounced as in tough
o, pronounced as in women
ti, pronounced as in nation

Mauatthecoast

Mauatthecoast Report 27 Apr 2013 11:41

Fish :-)

eRRolSheep

eRRolSheep Report 27 Apr 2013 11:43

Absolutely correct.
I find English a fascinating language

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 27 Apr 2013 11:43

how about this one......what is this.....Ghoughpteighbteau

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 27 Apr 2013 11:46


Annx - never heard that one before, Loogabarrooga!!
As an in-joke in our family we always refer to Sluff when we mean Slough. ;-) ;-)

eRRolSheep

eRRolSheep Report 27 Apr 2013 11:49

excellent one Karen - I have PMd you so as not to spoil it for others

eRRolSheep

eRRolSheep Report 27 Apr 2013 11:51

To demonstrate Dermot's OP, ghoti could also say absolutely nothing...

though
people
ballet
business

RolloTheRed

RolloTheRed Report 27 Apr 2013 11:52

I was a little shocked when my OH ( not a native English speaker) told me that we would be having " turd in the hole" for lunch.

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 27 Apr 2013 11:54

yep, right Errol.

I remember going over some of these as part of a local history course I did. We did a bit on English language, spelling and spelling reform etc.
You can have a lot of fun with the English language. :-D

Dermot

Dermot Report 27 Apr 2013 11:57

"English speech is no honourable guide to English spelling". (Don't know who said this.)

"It is a poor scholar who can't spell a word in two ways". (Mark Twain).

Sharron

Sharron Report 27 Apr 2013 12:04

A friend of mine worked in a greengrocers and had to pass a customer over to a coleague while she left the shop.

He was from the Indian restaurant up the road and made the mistake I have heard others use.

The shop only ever put small cauliflowers on display because big ones took up room and never sold from the display anyway. This gentleman asked, using,I might add,better English than my or her Urdu might be, "Do you have big cauliflowers out your back side?"

We are still wondering who told him.

RolloTheRed

RolloTheRed Report 27 Apr 2013 12:28

try this, a minor classic

"English As She Is Spoke"

http://www.exclassics.com/espoke/espkpdf.pdf

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 27 Apr 2013 12:54


LOL, I had a laugh at that Rollo!!
Just reading the Introduction page - For To Ride A Horse and An Anecdote - reminded me of the calibre of 'translation' you get from using one of the many on-line translators and hoping that what it's produced will get you a beer and a snack when holidaying in some back of beyond foreign land! :-D :-D