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RE: [mythsoc] Re: language change

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  • Paula Bergstrom
    Hence is on its way out (such a useful word)? Well, dang! (Is dang on its way out too? I m so behind-the-times.) Paula To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com From:
    Message 1 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
      'Hence' is on its way out (such a useful word)? Well, dang! (Is 'dang' on its way out too? I'm so behind-the-times.)

      Paula


      To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
      From: mlcvamp@...
      Date: Wed, 27 Apr 2011 14:36:55 -0400
      Subject: [mythsoc] Re: language change

       
      <There's a hit list of some pretty good words, some of which are outmoded 
      already and some that are on their way out
      >

      And the adverb groups where / whence / wither, there / thence / thither, and here / hence / hither. They elegantly indicated position or motion to or from; now they're relegated to archaism.

      I don't think there's anything necessarily Orwellian going on, though. Language typically gets simplified over the centuries by the dropping of less-used forms.

      Margaret Carter

    • Alana Abbott
      This makes me wonder if I m using hence incorrectly. We often use it in place of therefore around here -- is that an alternate definition? An anachronism?
      Message 2 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
        This makes me wonder if I'm using "hence" incorrectly. We often use it in place of "therefore" around here -- is that an alternate definition? An anachronism? Or just plain wrong?

        -Alana

        On Thu, Apr 28, 2011 at 10:38 AM, Paula Bergstrom <paulabergstrom@...> wrote:
         

        'Hence' is on its way out (such a useful word)? Well, dang! (Is 'dang' on its way out too? I'm so behind-the-times.)

        Paula






        --
        Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor (http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com)
        Author of Into the Reach and Departure, available at http://tinyurl.com/aja-ebooks
        Columnist, "The Town with Five Main Streets," http://branford.patch.com/columns/the-town-with-five-main-streets
        Contributor to Origins Award winner, Serenity Adventures: http://tinyurl.com/serenity-adventures
        --
        For updates on my writings, join my mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/alanajoliabbottfans

      • David Emerson
        ... From: Paula Bergstrom ... Hence is still used as a synonym for ergo . And whence ? Well if it s good enough for Bob Dylan, it s good enough for me:
        Message 3 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
          -----Original Message-----
          From: Paula Bergstrom
          >'Hence' is on its way out (such a useful word)? Well, dang!

          "Hence" is still used as a synonym for "ergo". And "whence"? Well if it's good enough for Bob Dylan, it's good enough for me:

          "And if you're looking to get silly / You better go back to from whence you came."
          -- Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues

          Okay, so his grammar is somewhat mangled...

          emerdavid

          ________________________________________
          PeoplePC Online
          A better way to Internet
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        • Darrell A. Martin
          ... Alana: The pair, here, there had a matching pair, hence, thence which can be simply defined, from here, from there . Hence , in the sense of from
          Message 4 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
            On 4/28/2011 9:41 AM, Alana Abbott wrote:
            >
            >
            > This makes me wonder if I'm using "hence" incorrectly. We often use it
            > in place of "therefore" around here -- is that an alternate definition?
            > An anachronism? Or just plain wrong?
            >
            > -Alana

            Alana:

            The pair, "here, there" had a matching pair, "hence, thence" which can
            be simply defined, "from here, from there".

            "Hence", in the sense of "from here", is often used metaphorically. That
            is to say, "having reached 'where we are', FROM HERE we may proceed".
            Hence, your usage is correct.

            Darrell
          • John Rateliff
            One further thought I find it amusing is that some grammarians try to correct people who say from whence , arguing that the proper usage is just whence .
            Message 5 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
              One further thought I find it amusing is that some grammarians try to 'correct' people who say "from whence", arguing that the proper usage is just "whence". They fail to take into account that "whence" has pretty much dropped out of spoken English, except in the literary tag ("from whence you came") David mentions. So their 'correction' would, if adopted, mean the word's disappearance from usage altogether.


              On Apr 28, 2011, at 9:11 AM, David Emerson wrote:
              ". . .  You better go back to from whence you came."

              Okay, so his grammar is somewhat mangled...

              Actually, it's elliptical: "You [had] better go back to [from when you came], with the verbal auxiliary "had" dropped (as it sometimes is in colloquial English for emphasis and "from whence you came" serving as the object of the preposition "to". It works because from-whence-you-came is enough of a cliche or tag line (like 'to whom it may concern'*) that he cleverly uses it as a unit for poetic effect.

              Ain't grammar grand?

              --JDR

              *itself pretty much the only survival of whom in spoken English.
            • Larry Swain
              On Thu, 28 Apr 2011 12:20 -0700, John Rateliff ... try to correct people who say from whence , arguing that the proper usage is just whence . They fail
              Message 6 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
                On Thu, 28 Apr 2011 12:20 -0700, "John Rateliff"
                <sacnoth@...> wrote:



                >>One further thought I find it amusing is that some grammarians
                try to 'correct' people who say "from whence", arguing that the
                proper usage is just "whence". They fail to take into account
                that "whence" has pretty much dropped out of spoken English,
                except in the literary tag ("from whence you came") David
                mentions. So their 'correction' would, if adopted, mean the
                word's disappearance from usage altogether.<<

                Even more amusing is that "from whence" is attested in major writers
                from the 14th century onward, including in Langland, Malory,
                Shakespeare, the King James, Dryden, Dickens, Robert Stevenson, etc.
                There are also uses such as "of whence" and "whence-from." I think it
                difficult for hyper-correcting grammarians to maintain that Shakespeare
                and Dickens and co. got it wrong. About the only thing that can be said
                is that it is *redundant* to say "from whence" or "of whence", but then
                language is full of useful, perfectly grammatical redundancies. So I'm
                amused by grammarians who correct a perfectly grammatical and
                well-attested usage.

                Larry Swain

                --
                http://www.fastmail.fm - Accessible with your email software
                or over the web
              • lynnmaudlin
                oh thank you! That helps me, too - like so many folks with large vocabularies, I ve gained much of it simply by usage (hearing, reading, & absorbing) and I ve
                Message 7 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
                  oh thank you! That helps me, too - like so many folks with large vocabularies, I've gained much of it simply by usage (hearing, reading, & absorbing) and I've used "hence" as a synonym for "therefore" - but it's got a slightly different quality to it, which you've managed to impart - thanks!!

                  -- Lynn --

                  --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Darrell A. Martin" <darrellm@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > On 4/28/2011 9:41 AM, Alana Abbott wrote:
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > This makes me wonder if I'm using "hence" incorrectly. We often use it
                  > > in place of "therefore" around here -- is that an alternate definition?
                  > > An anachronism? Or just plain wrong?
                  > >
                  > > -Alana
                  >
                  > Alana:
                  >
                  > The pair, "here, there" had a matching pair, "hence, thence" which can
                  > be simply defined, "from here, from there".
                  >
                  > "Hence", in the sense of "from here", is often used metaphorically. That
                  > is to say, "having reached 'where we are', FROM HERE we may proceed".
                  > Hence, your usage is correct.
                  >
                  > Darrell
                  >
                • lynnmaudlin
                  ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its
                  Message 8 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
                    ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)

                    -- Lynn --


                    --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Larry Swain" <theswain@...> wrote:
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > On Thu, 28 Apr 2011 12:20 -0700, "John Rateliff"
                    > <sacnoth@...> wrote:
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > >>One further thought I find it amusing is that some grammarians
                    > try to 'correct' people who say "from whence", arguing that the
                    > proper usage is just "whence". They fail to take into account
                    > that "whence" has pretty much dropped out of spoken English,
                    > except in the literary tag ("from whence you came") David
                    > mentions. So their 'correction' would, if adopted, mean the
                    > word's disappearance from usage altogether.<<
                    >
                    > Even more amusing is that "from whence" is attested in major writers
                    > from the 14th century onward, including in Langland, Malory,
                    > Shakespeare, the King James, Dryden, Dickens, Robert Stevenson, etc.
                    > There are also uses such as "of whence" and "whence-from." I think it
                    > difficult for hyper-correcting grammarians to maintain that Shakespeare
                    > and Dickens and co. got it wrong. About the only thing that can be said
                    > is that it is *redundant* to say "from whence" or "of whence", but then
                    > language is full of useful, perfectly grammatical redundancies. So I'm
                    > amused by grammarians who correct a perfectly grammatical and
                    > well-attested usage.
                    >
                    > Larry Swain
                    >
                    > --
                    > http://www.fastmail.fm - Accessible with your email software
                    > or over the web
                    >
                  • Darrell A. Martin
                    ... Lynn: It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.
                    Message 9 of 21 , Apr 28, 2011
                      On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                      > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                      >
                      > -- Lynn --

                      Lynn:

                      It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                      for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.

                      Darrell
                    • Margaret Dean
                      On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin ... The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a
                      Message 10 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                        On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin
                        <darrellm@...> wrote:
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                        > > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                        > >
                        > > -- Lynn --
                        >
                        > Lynn:
                        >
                        > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                        > for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.

                        "The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that
                        English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow
                        words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways
                        to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new
                        vocabulary."—James D. Nicoll, 1990, in the Usenet group
                        rec.arts.sf-lovers
                      • Alana Abbott
                        Margaret, [an off-list response] Yay, the real quote! James Nicoll is a reviewer for *Publishers Weekly* (as am I), so I was thrilled to get the back story of
                        Message 11 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                          Margaret,

                          [an off-list response]

                          Yay, the real quote! James Nicoll is a reviewer for Publishers Weekly (as am I), so I was thrilled to get the back story of his quote on our mailing list a few years ago. :) I'm so glad you posted the whole thing.

                          -Alana

                          On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 9:42 PM, Margaret Dean <margdean56@...> wrote:
                          On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin
                          <darrellm@...> wrote:
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                          > > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                          > >
                          > > -- Lynn --
                          >
                          > Lynn:
                          >
                          > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                          > for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.

                          "The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that
                          English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow
                          words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways
                          to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new
                          vocabulary."—James D. Nicoll, 1990, in the Usenet group
                          rec.arts.sf-lovers


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                          --
                          Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor (http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com)
                          Author of Into the Reach and Departure, available at http://tinyurl.com/aja-ebooks
                          Columnist, "The Town with Five Main Streets," http://branford.patch.com/columns/the-town-with-five-main-streets
                          Contributor to Origins Award winner, Serenity Adventures: http://tinyurl.com/serenity-adventures
                          --
                          For updates on my writings, join my mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/alanajoliabbottfans

                        • Alana Abbott
                          Ha! Or an on-list response when I hit the wrong button. -Alana ... -- Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor ( http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com) Author
                          Message 12 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                            Ha! Or an on-list response when I hit the wrong button.

                            -Alana

                            On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 10:52 PM, Alana Abbott <alanajoli@...> wrote:
                            Margaret,

                            [an off-list response]

                            Yay, the real quote! James Nicoll is a reviewer for Publishers Weekly (as am I), so I was thrilled to get the back story of his quote on our mailing list a few years ago. :) I'm so glad you posted the whole thing.

                            -Alana

                            On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 9:42 PM, Margaret Dean <margdean56@...> wrote:
                            On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin
                            <darrellm@...> wrote:
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                            > > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                            > >
                            > > -- Lynn --
                            >
                            > Lynn:
                            >
                            > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                            > for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.

                            "The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that
                            English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow
                            words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways
                            to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new
                            vocabulary."—James D. Nicoll, 1990, in the Usenet group
                            rec.arts.sf-lovers


                            ------------------------------------

                            The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.orgYahoo! Groups Links

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                            --
                            Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor (http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com)
                            Author of Into the Reach and Departure, available at http://tinyurl.com/aja-ebooks
                            Columnist, "The Town with Five Main Streets," http://branford.patch.com/columns/the-town-with-five-main-streets
                            Contributor to Origins Award winner, Serenity Adventures: http://tinyurl.com/serenity-adventures
                            --
                            For updates on my writings, join my mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/alanajoliabbottfans




                            --
                            Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor (http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com)
                            Author of Into the Reach and Departure, available at http://tinyurl.com/aja-ebooks
                            Columnist, "The Town with Five Main Streets," http://branford.patch.com/columns/the-town-with-five-main-streets
                            Contributor to Origins Award winner, Serenity Adventures: http://tinyurl.com/serenity-adventures
                            --
                            For updates on my writings, join my mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/alanajoliabbottfans

                          • lynnmaudlin
                            I prefer the snowball analogy; my mother tongue would never beat up a defenseless little language in a dark alley!!! ;) -- Lynn --
                            Message 13 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                              I prefer the snowball analogy; my mother tongue would never beat up a defenseless little language in a dark alley!!! ;)

                              -- Lynn --


                              --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Darrell A. Martin" <darrellm@...> wrote:
                              >
                              > On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                              > > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                              > >
                              > > -- Lynn --
                              >
                              > Lynn:
                              >
                              > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                              > for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.
                              >
                              > Darrell
                              >
                            • lynnmaudlin
                              Are we defending the purity of English ?? We are not the Académie française, after all--!! We re discussing history and bemoaning the passing of the
                              Message 14 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                                Are we defending the "purity of English"?? We are not the Académie française, after all--!! We're discussing history and bemoaning the passing of the intimate singular second person (huh! good thing I'm first person, eh?!). {{grin}}

                                -- Lynn --


                                --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, Margaret Dean <margdean56@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin
                                > <darrellm@...> wrote:
                                > >
                                > >
                                > >
                                > > On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                                > > > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                                > > >
                                > > > -- Lynn --
                                > >
                                > > Lynn:
                                > >
                                > > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                                > > for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.
                                >
                                > "The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that
                                > English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow
                                > words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways
                                > to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new
                                > vocabulary."—James D. Nicoll, 1990, in the Usenet group
                                > rec.arts.sf-lovers
                                >
                              • bernip
                                James Nicoll also blogs regularly on Live Journal. (His LJ handle is his name.) He writes much of his many cats and too-frequent accidents. He s a very
                                Message 15 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                                  James Nicoll also blogs regularly on Live Journal.  (His LJ handle is his name.)  He writes much of his many cats and too-frequent accidents.  He's a very witty writer (and a current Hugo nominee for best fan writer, I believe.)
                                   
                                  Berni
                                   

                                  From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Alana Abbott
                                  Sent: Friday, April 29, 2011 7:53 PM
                                  To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                                  Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Re: language change

                                  Margaret,

                                  [an off-list response]

                                  Yay, the real quote! James Nicoll is a reviewer for Publishers Weekly (as am I), so I was thrilled to get the back story of his quote on our mailing list a few years ago. :) I'm so glad you posted the whole thing.

                                  -Alana

                                  On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 9:42 PM, Margaret Dean <margdean56@...> wrote:
                                  On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin
                                  <darrellm@...> wrote:
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > On 4/29/2011 12:48 AM, lynnmaudlin wrote:
                                  > > ESPECIALLY in English, of all things! English, that grand snowball rolling downhill of a language, gathering pebbles and branches and slow animals in its path...! ;)
                                  > >
                                  > > -- Lynn --
                                  >
                                  > Lynn:
                                  >
                                  > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages. It waits
                                  > for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up, and takes whatever it wants.

                                  "The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that
                                  English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow
                                  words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways
                                  to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new
                                  vocabulary."—James D. Nicoll, 1990, in the Usenet group
                                  rec.arts.sf-lovers


                                  ------------------------------------

                                  The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.orgYahoo! Groups Links

                                  <*> To visit your group on the web, go to:
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                                  --
                                  Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor (http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com)
                                  Author of Into the Reach and Departure, available at http://tinyurl.com/aja-ebooks
                                  Columnist, "The Town with Five Main Streets," http://branford.patch.com/columns/the-town-with-five-main-streets
                                  Contributor to Origins Award winner, Serenity Adventures: http://tinyurl.com/serenity-adventures
                                  --
                                  For updates on my writings, join my mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/alanajoliabbottfans

                                • Darrell A. Martin
                                  ... Yay! indeed: I have heard a paraphrase of this quote in about half a dozen versions, over the years. Hence it is said . I m glad to get the whole thing,
                                  Message 16 of 21 , Apr 29, 2011
                                    On 4/29/2011 9:52 PM, Alana Abbott wrote:
                                    >
                                    > Margaret,
                                    >
                                    > Yay, the real quote! James Nicoll is a reviewer for /Publishers
                                    > Weekly/ (as am I), so I was thrilled to get the back story of his quote
                                    > on our mailing list a few years ago. :) I'm so glad you posted the whole
                                    > thing.
                                    >
                                    > -Alana
                                    >
                                    > On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 9:42 PM, Margaret Dean <margdean56@...
                                    > <mailto:margdean56@...>> wrote:
                                    >
                                    > On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM, Darrell A. Martin
                                    > <darrellm@... <mailto:darrellm@...>> wrote:
                                    > >
                                    > > Lynn:
                                    > >
                                    > > It is said that English does not borrow from other languages.
                                    > > It waits for them to go into dark alleys, beats them up,
                                    > > and takes whatever it wants.

                                    >> "The problem with defending the purity of
                                    >> the English language is that English is
                                    >> about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We
                                    >> don't just borrow words; on occasion,
                                    >> English has pursued other languages down
                                    >> alleyways to beat them unconscious and
                                    >> rifle their pockets for new vocabulary."
                                    >> —James D. Nicoll, 1990, in the Usenet
                                    >> group rec.arts.sf-lovers

                                    Yay! indeed:

                                    I have heard a paraphrase of this quote in about half a dozen versions,
                                    over the years. Hence "it is said". I'm glad to get the whole thing, and
                                    a source.

                                    Classic Usenet, with no consideration for the feelings of the poor
                                    cribhouse whores even in the period after it switched from the original
                                    clay tablets to papyrus.

                                    Darrell
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