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Guest The Ancient Brit

What is in a word ?

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Hello Gentlemen, I am surprised that you folks apparently do not realize that there is a difference between 'there' and 'their'. The X-Plane article today seems to prove that point.Regards

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Blaise.I also have noticed their is constant confusion with the word there. Two many times the words are confused to often too the detriment of good English. I suppose it will always be thus. We who are in the know will have to make allowances.Denis. The Ancient Brit.

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Denis.I agree with your premise that "We who are in the know will have to make allowances". But your second sentence starts with "Two many times......", but did you mean Two as in it has only happened twice. As a fellow countryman I agree a higher standard should be applied and maintained but we must remember that some are from the Colonies and perhaps do not benefit, as we have, from our education and upbringing in this green and sceptered isle.Standards are falling below an acceptable level, I have noticed even here. There are those I understand who speak what may be known as "The Queens English" then there are those who do not, take as a case in point Mr Jamie Oliver, whom I understand comes from Essex. Then there are those and I include myself; who come from a part of this country generically called North of Watford and are refered to as "Those Poor Northerners". But despite being stuck with whippets, flat caps, cotton mills and black pudding I shall not allow my standards to drop. I mean what would the Times have to say on this matter and I wonder and where will it all end.With best regardsPeter.

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Denis,Fear not for I should not take you to task, my reply was firmly tongue in cheek with a hint of humour hence my reference to The Times. I try to make it a point never to insult anyone, sometimes I may fail but I do do try.I agree with your very valid points concerning others on this site whose first, or in some cases even second, language may not be the Queens English, World English, or American English and I applaud them all.Being married to an American I am often reminded of the semantics of it all. When I mention the car she reminds me it is in fact an automobile and takes great pride in telling me that they (the Americans) invented the thing, which I`m not sure is strictly true. But then I have to remind her that we (the British) did in fact invent the language. Add to this a German daughter in law then you can see that in our house with the family firmly clasped to our bossom the conversation is sometimes slow often loud and with much arm waving, but always happy and filled with laughter.I have told the "Creche" joke to my good lady, I have explained the "Creche" joke to her. I have done the "Creche" joke with a Kensington accent. Alas you were correct, here at least is one American who is mystified.Best RegardsPeter.

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Peter,As you have only taken me to task over the use of

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If you reread his post you will notice he consciously mixed the words. :)Dave

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Denis,as usual you have me sitting here grinning in front of my monitor with your very British style of writing, which I like so much, but can't do myself ;-)You are so right.. the only way to learn (not only languages but just about everything) starts with NOT being afraid to make mistakes.The other thing I would like to mention is what a famous writer and traveler once said (hmm, perhaps not so famous, since I forgot who it was), when asked how he could travel to all those faraway places and make himself understood. He said "...........Easy enough. Although there are many languages people speak, there is ONE language that everybody over the entire world speaks: bad English!........"True, I too sometimes cringe at the (mis)use of language at times, when it becomes utterly clear that people do not learn in schools anymore what we learned 40 years, or even longer, ago. And having been a 'corrector' at a newspaper, it DOES hurt sometimes. But that does not go for popular forums like these, where people are just trying to communicate over things that are close to their hearts, not writing essays.Oh, one more thing, I must confess I have no idea what language that is you are learning, I don't suppose it has anything to do with gymnastics? Some form of Keltic dialect? :-) Is that where the 'smae' comes from ? ;-)Kind regards,Francois :-outta Francois :-wave[table border=0 cellpadding=10 cellspacing=0][tr][td valign=bottom" align="center]"At home in the wild"[/td][td valign=bottom" align="center][link:avsim.com/alaska/alaska_052.htm]Don's Alaskan Bush Charters]"Beavers Lead the Way"[/td][td valign=bottom" align="center][br][tr][td valign=top" align="center]http://bfu.avsim.net/sigpics/logo75b.gif[/td][td valign="top" align="left" colspan=2]http://www.fssupport.com/images/moose2.gif[/td][tr][/table

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"But then I have to remind her that we (the British) did in fact invent the language."At the risk of starting a cross pond mini-skirmish...Celts + French + Romans + Danes + Dutch + Saxons + Spanish + X = evolved (not invented) :)And then, when we finally shook the last tea bag into Boston Harbor and finally started to make sense of it all, and you started to learn from us:evolved + American English = assimulatedas in; resistance is futile - prepare to be assimulated... :-lolAnd just having returned from merry 'ol England last weekend, I continue to be amazed at how Americanized your language is becoming!!! And that was really surprising given that I spent most of the week in Devon!!!>

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Peter,On the subject of cars, the following which I have gleaned from the Internet might interest your good lady and when she has finished reading it you can go on to explain where the bonnet (hood) and the boot (trunk) of the car is and also the fact that most cars run on petrol.

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Denis, well, there are a few Brit twists of the language that remain truly British. In 1977 I found myself in Fiji one day having a liesurely read of the Fiji Times (The First Newspaper published in the world each and every day...).. Anyway, I came across what I thought was a copy / edit issue in "Fred went to hospital". I thought, aha! They flubbed that one. Where was the "the"???? As in "Fred went to THE hospital".Much to my dismay, I found that it is "proper" English. It drives me absolutely batty! What happened to the "THE"????

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TomThank you for reminding me that English evolved from many nations over the centuries and there is no fear that you should start a cross pond skirmish for I should never take it to be so. When I reply to my wife that we (may)have invented the lanuage it is no more than a friendly riposte but may also be seen that Americans are not included in the extremely long list of those other nations. No more than as Denis has pointed out, that they (Americans), invented the Motor Car as she likes to claim thus attempting to justify it being called an Automobile. A friendly cross pond skirmish has been taking place within our household for the last 35 years or so. Never to be taken seriously and always with good humour. You may imagine the confusion in our house whilst our children were growing up. We would at times take turns to help with school work, when she helped spelling would be in the American and when I helped spelling would be in the British. She always taught our children (both now in their early thirties)that when speaking to her parents, either during visits to America or on the phone, they would always address her parents as "Ma'am" and Sir" a trait they still retain to this day but my parents are refered to as "Grannie and Granddad".For DenisI am reminded of a time when I used to go sailing on Llyn Tegid many years ago with a friend who is Welsh and whos first lanuage being Welsh, coming only to English during his teens. At the southern end of the lake is Llanuwchllyn where there used to be (perhaps still is) a small tea shop. One evening after a days sailing we called into the tea shop for some tea and sandwiches. As we sat down all conversation by the other occupants stopped for a moment and then re-started again in Welsh. After an enjoyable snack we went to leave, I went to the counter to pay whilst my friend got our coats. As we were about to depart my friend turned to the other occupants and in Welsh told them how nice it was for us that they had started to speak Welsh when we arrived and we had really enjoyed overhearing their conversations. As you may imagine there were some red faces as of course the real reason they had started to speak in Welsh when we entered was so that they could talk about us.Best RegardsPeter.

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Hmmmm, we have that one in Dutch as well. Rather simple and very real difference really: 'Fred went to hospital' means he went to a place where doctors and nurses are gathered to try and cure patients. ANY such place. When you add 'the' you are talking about one SPECIFIC hospital, and will then have to name place and locations for readers to understand what you are talking about, since there usually are more than one in most countries. ;-) :-outta Francois :-wave[table border=0 cellpadding=10 cellspacing=0][tr][td valign=bottom" align="center]"At home in the wild"[/td][td valign=bottom" align="center][link:avsim.com/alaska/alaska_052.htm]Don's Alaskan Bush Charters]"Beavers Lead the Way"[/td][td valign=bottom" align="center][br][tr][td valign=top" align="center]http://bfu.avsim.net/sigpics/logo75b.gif[/td][td valign="top" align="left" colspan=2]http://www.fssupport.com/images/moose2.gif[/td][tr][/table

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