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I’m glad I don’t have to learn English

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/28/2005 at 11:31
Chris Farris View Drop Down
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WHY ENGLISH IS SO DIFFICULT

We'll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes;
but the plural of ox became oxen not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese,
yet the plural of moose should never be meese
.

You may find a lone mouse or a nest full of mice;
yet the plural of house is houses, not hice.
If the plural of man is always called men,
why shouldn't the plural of pan be called pen?

If I spoke of my foot and show you my feet,
and I give you a boot, would a pair be called beet?
If one is a tooth and a whole set are teeth,
why shouldn't the plural of booth be called beeth?
Then one may be that, and three would be those,
yet hat in the plural would never be hose,
and the plural of cat is cats, not cose.

We speak of a brother and also of brethren,
but though we say mother we never say methren.
Then the masculine pronouns are he, his and him,
but imagine the feminine, she, shis and shim.

Some reasons to be grateful if you grew up speaking English;

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish furniture.
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.

6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to
present the present.
8) At the Army base, a bass was painted on the head of a bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.

11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.

16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow
to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) After a number of Novocain injections, my jaw got number.
19) Upon seeing the tear in the painting ! I shed a tear.
20) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

21) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?
22) I spent last evening evening out a pile of dirt.

Let's face it - English is a crazy language.

There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger;
neither apple nor pine in pineapple.
English muffins weren't invented in England.

We take English for granted. But, if we explore its paradoxes,
we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and
a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. And why is it that
writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers
don't ham?

Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend? If
you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them,
what do you call it?

If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does! a humanitarian eat?

In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship
by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that
smell? How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a
wise man and a wiseguy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your
house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by
filling it out and in which an alarm goes off by going on.

If Dad is Pop, how come Mom isn't Mop?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/28/2005 at 12:48
silver View Drop Down
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Joined: November/04/2005
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No hablo?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2005 at 17:32
koshkin View Drop Down
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Chris, you are telling me about it???

 

Anyhow, irregularities in English are certainly interesting, but not all that unique.  Russian has its share.  I understand a little Hebrew and it is no slouch either.

 

Ilya

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/30/2005 at 09:35
Dale Clifford View Drop Down
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Koshkin isn't kidding either. A Russian word can have 3-4 different meanings just on were the accent mark is, it's place in the sentence, and the verb tense (which there are 6 tenses instead of 3).
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/30/2005 at 12:44
koshkin View Drop Down
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Well, as far as tenses go, English is much worse than Russian.  Russian only has three tenses.  What you are referring to is a way to change the utilize the verb (or an adjective for that matter).  I do not know the exact term for this grammatical structure in English, but it is not "tense".  There are three tenses in russian, three genders, and seven of these "cases".  Hence, the same verb can be modified in 63 (seven times three times three) different ways (mostly different suffixes) depending on the situation.

 

Ilya

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