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  • melvyn.geo
    A couple of points raised at our last round table: Diminutives: As Iveta Rokytova points out in Prekladatelska problematika ceskych zdrobnelin v anglictine
    Message 1 of 2 , Dec 2, 2005
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      A couple of points raised at our last round table:

      Diminutives:

      As Iveta Rokytova points out in Prekladatelska problematika ceskych
      zdrobnelin v anglictine (Casopis pro moderni filologii 1993 (2)),
      English actually has _more_ diminutive endings than Dutch or German,
      but these endings (-kin, -ikin, -ikins, -let, -ling, -et, ette,
      -ie,-y, -ee, -ies, -o, -er) are simply not called upon as much as they
      are in many other European languages. Endearment and familiarity are
      often expressed in English by little words like 'little', 'old',
      'little old' 'cute', 'wee' etc.

      I would just add that English diminutives do, of course, crop up a lot
      more in such linguistic twilight zones as intimate language, family
      language and baby talk. And in dialect. I used to know a Glaswegian
      who would often refer approvingly to everyday objects with
      diminutives, e.g. a wee hoosie = a house.

      Language exchanges:

      If you want to exchange your Czech, Slovak or English for Klingon or
      whatever via Skype, e-mail, messaging etc, I'd recommend the following
      totally free sites.

      http://www.xlingo.com

      ...well worth exploring;

      http://www.jyve.com/

      and click on 'languages'.

      Hours of fun for all the family.

      I mentioned an online French (plus Spanish and Italian) dictionary
      that links in with extensive forum (diskusni server?) discussions of
      awkward terms (just as Leo does with German). Many of you will know it
      already:

      http://www.wordreference.com/

      Vytopna
      Heat generation unit? Any other bright ideas for the kind of thing
      that heats blocks of flats?

      And then we touched on the subject of words of American origin in
      British English. Bill Bryson has a long list of such surprising items
      as: commuter, bedrock, snag, striptease, cold spell, gimmick (but
      BrEng exported 'gadget' to America, along with miniskirts, smog and
      radar inter alia), baby-sitter, lengthy, sag, soggy, teenager,
      telephone, typewriter, radio, to cut no ice, to butt in, to sidetrack,
      hangover, fudge, joyride, bucket shop, blizzard, stunt, law-abiding,
      to notify, to park, to rattle (in the sense of to unnerve) and many
      more, not to mention words originally in British English such as
      frame-up, which the OED termed obsolete in 1901, "little realizing
      that it would soon be reintroduced to its native land in a thousand
      gangster movies." (Mother Tongue pp 164-165).

      As I see we have some roundabout-building mania here in the Czech
      Republic at the moment (and a good thing too), it may also be worth
      noting that 'roundabout' was also originally coined by an American.
      The British previously referred to 'gyratory circuses'.

      BR

      Melvyn
      And your cry-baby whiny-assed opinion would be...?
    • tomas_barendregt
      ... Sure do (if you mean the free-standing building supplying heat to other buildings): boiler plant. Tom
      Message 2 of 2 , Dec 2, 2005
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        --- In Czechlist@yahoogroups.com, "melvyn.geo" <zehrovak@d...> wrote:
        > Vytopna
        > Heat generation unit? Any other bright ideas for the kind of thing
        > that heats blocks of flats?

        Sure do (if you mean the free-standing building supplying heat to other
        buildings): boiler plant.

        Tom
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