Page 376 of 383 FirstFirst ... 276326366374375376377378 ... LastLast
Results 11,251 to 11,280 of 11464

Thread: Really trivial stuff that amuses you...

  1. #11251
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Depew, NY
    Posts
    12,360
    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Transliteration, again; there are several different schemes to render Mandarin in Latin characters. Taiwan still uses the Wade-Giles transliteration scheme for proper names, whereas mainland China uses Pinyin. In Wade-Giles, Beijing was Peking, as many will recall.

    Grant Hutchison
    I am a Latin American history major. I was required to take 2 classes on what is strangely called "Southeast Asia". That is apparently 1/4-1/3 of planet Earth. In Western textbooks, there is a convention to break up "Asia" into many different regions. Not for these classes. It's like Hannibal marching through the Himalayas.

    The schemes to render various languages in Latin characters are all over the place between textbooks. "I can't even pronounce this stuff, let alone memorize it." I had 3 text books per semester and they all seemed to doing it differently. Half the time I couldn't even figure out text book A was talking about the same people and places as textbook B because of the spelling. I found myself suddenly understanding something and would like to know more.

    "Wait, go back! That's interesting".
    The professor would say, "We have 14 other countries and 3000 more years to go, we can't slow down now!"
    "Dammit! This is like the Willy Wonka Boat Ride!"
    "And the rowers keep on rowing," sung the professor.

    Don't get my started on Philippines history, I understand less of that than I do China or Japan. It's mentioned tangentially in both Latin American studies and Southeast Asian studies.

    I guess you could do what my professor did and travel the area you are studying.
    Solfe

  2. #11252
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    16,675
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    "B" and "P" seem to be ambiguous in Korea as well. When I was there -- holy cow, almost 50 years ago! -- you could see highway signs with distance to either "Pusan" or "Busan" within a few kilometers. Same city at the southern end of the peninsula.
    “B” and “V” are ambiguous in Greek. In Athens you can see signs for “Votanic Gardens” and “Banilla Ice Cream”.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  3. #11253
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    20,009
    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    “B” and “V” are ambiguous in Greek. In Athens you can see signs for “Votanic Gardens” and “Banilla Ice Cream”.
    Yes. As you probably know, Ancient Greek had three bilabial plosives, π (p), β (b), and φ (ph) and no labial fricatives. Modern Greek has reduced its plosives and acquired two fricatives, repurposing φ (f) and β (v), with μπ now doing duty for a /b/ sound. But I notice that the standard Modern Greek transliteration to Latin converts μπ to "b" if it's at the start of a word, but "mp" in the middle of a word.
    So I have two questions about Modern Greek:
    Is the "v" sound symbolized by β some sort of hybrid, like the Spanish bilabial fricative (Spanish Habana / English Havana)?
    To what extent does the sound of μπ approximate "mp"? Is that merely a conventional digraph, like "ng" in English, or does it reflect a real sound quality?

    Grant Hutchison

  4. #11254
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    North Tonawanda, NY
    Posts
    3,905
    Arabic had, within the era of recorded history, two sound shifts which only affected one member of a voiced-unvoiced pair, thus creating asymmetries where there had previously been symmetries: p→f but not b→v, and g→j (in most dialects including Standard) but not k→ch. The latter opened up a gap into which what was originally "Q" has migrated in some dialects. ("Q" is distinct from "K" by being articulated farther back, more like the back of the mouth or top of the throat instead of the middle of the mouth. It never did have a voiced counterpart in Arabic, but became voiced in some dialects, and then shifted forward to the "G" position when the original "G" became "J".)

    As a result, you can see whether a foreign word was imported to Arabic before or after the shifts based on what happened to its sounds. For example, when they would talk about the Greek dude named "Perseus" in ancient times, they imported it with a P, then the shift happened and he became "Ferseus/Farsaus" to them. But they didn't talk about him a whole lot, so there are later writings by Arabs who weren't very familiar with him and imported the name from Greek again, this time as "Berseus/Barsaus" because B was the closest they could get to P by then.

    And "supreme" becomes "surbeem" because they find it easier to pronounce an R before another consonant instead of after. I found out about that one by ordering a bizza.

    Another funny case with those sound shifts is the Persian concept of a dragon who usually stays hidden in the night sky, slithering between the stars, but occasionally causes an eclipse by biting/swallowing the sun or moon and spitting/vomiting it back out. The Persians named it "Gauzahar/Gauzahir", which the Arabs imported with the original G, then the shift happened so it became "Jauzahar/Jauzahir". But then the Persians started using the Arabic alphabet, which didn't have a letter for "G" by then, so they made their own out of the letter for "K". So now its Persian spelling uses a modified K to spell what was originally their own word with a "G"-sound, to get around a sound shift which didn't happen in Persian.

    Seeing things like that in other languages makes it easier to understand how English can have equivalent blind spots.

    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Is the "v" sound symbolized by β some sort of hybrid, like the Spanish bilabial fricative (Spanish Habana / English Havana)?
    I don't speak the language but what I've read says no, Beta (Vita) and Phi (Fi) are labiodental now (F & V).

    It can be tricky to determine that, if you're reading a source that uses the IPA, because the IPA uses the letter Beta (Vita) to represent the voiced bilabial fricative and something derived from Phi (Fi) to represent the unvoiced one. But those symbols were chosen simply because something was needed to fill in those gaps in the table and people figured that the Greek letters must have been bilabial fricatives in a temporary intermediate stage at some time.

    Ordinarily I'd say it would be no shock to find that some dialects go one way and others go another way, even if foreign writers don't recognize the distinction, but in this case I doubt it, because bilabial fricatives are rather unstable sounds. They have a tendency to fall to one side of the fence or the other (becoming either plosives or labiodentals). In fact, that tendency is responsible for all known occurrences of the sounds /f/ or /v/ in any language. (There was a recently published article offering a theory about why, but, even without that explanation, it's long been known that those two sounds are either mostly or entirely "recent" inventions, deriving from either /b/, /p/, or /w/ within recorded history. The theorized explanation is that /f/ and /v/ became easier to pronounce when people's tooth positions shifted as a result of changes in diet that came with agriculture.)

    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    To what extent does the sound of μπ approximate "mp"? Is that merely a conventional digraph, like "ng" in English, or does it reflect a real sound quality?
    It's entirely a digraph. The sound /b/ doesn't exist in Greek anymore, so they have no sound for which such a digraph would be needed; the digraph is only used when necessary for foreign words or names, like "Mparak Ompama". The closest English phenomenon is our attempts to represent /x/ as "ch", "kh", "x", or "χ".
    Last edited by Delvo; 2020-Dec-04 at 07:13 AM.

  5. #11255
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    14,563
    Quote Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
    And "supreme" becomes "surbeem" because they find it easier to pronounce an R before another consonant instead of after. I found out about that one by ordering a bizza.
    That phenomenon, called "metathesis," is not uncommon. In English a well-known example is "comfortable". When spelled, the "r" comes before the "t," but when we pronounce it, we put the "r" after the "t" ("comfterble").

    Also, we mainly pronounce "asterisk" as "asteriks".
    As above, so below

  6. #11256
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    16,349
    Then there's "Febuary". Nobody pronounces that first R.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  7. #11257
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK and some of me is in Northern France
    Posts
    9,409
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Then there's "Febuary". Nobody pronounces that first R.
    Err, guilty, said as four syllables, like january,��
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  8. #11258
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    20,009
    Quote Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
    Arabic had, within the era of recorded history, two sound shifts which only affected one member of a voiced-unvoiced pair, thus creating asymmetries where there had previously been symmetries: p→f but not b→v, and g→j (in most dialects including Standard) but not k→ch. The latter opened up a gap into which what was originally "Q" has migrated in some dialects. ("Q" is distinct from "K" by being articulated farther back, more like the back of the mouth or top of the throat instead of the middle of the mouth. It never did have a voiced counterpart in Arabic, but became voiced in some dialects, and then shifted forward to the "G" position when the original "G" became "J".)

    As a result, you can see whether a foreign word was imported to Arabic before or after the shifts based on what happened to its sounds. For example, when they would talk about the Greek dude named "Perseus" in ancient times, they imported it with a P, then the shift happened and he became "Ferseus/Farsaus" to them. But they didn't talk about him a whole lot, so there are later writings by Arabs who weren't very familiar with him and imported the name from Greek again, this time as "Berseus/Barsaus" because B was the closest they could get to P by then.

    And "supreme" becomes "surbeem" because they find it easier to pronounce an R before another consonant instead of after. I found out about that one by ordering a bizza.

    Another funny case with those sound shifts is the Persian concept of a dragon who usually stays hidden in the night sky, slithering between the stars, but occasionally causes an eclipse by biting/swallowing the sun or moon and spitting/vomiting it back out. The Persians named it "Gauzahar/Gauzahir", which the Arabs imported with the original G, then the shift happened so it became "Jauzahar/Jauzahir". But then the Persians started using the Arabic alphabet, which didn't have a letter for "G" by then, so they made their own out of the letter for "K". So now its Persian spelling uses a modified K to spell what was originally their own word with a "G"-sound, to get around a sound shift which didn't happen in Persian.

    Seeing things like that in other languages makes it easier to understand how English can have equivalent blind spots.

    I don't speak the language but what I've read says no, Beta (Vita) and Phi (Fi) are labiodental now (F & V).

    It can be tricky to determine that, if you're reading a source that uses the IPA, because the IPA uses the letter Beta (Vita) to represent the voiced bilabial fricative and something derived from Phi (Fi) to represent the unvoiced one. But those symbols were chosen simply because something was needed to fill in those gaps in the table and people figured that the Greek letters must have been bilabial fricatives in a temporary intermediate stage at some time.

    Ordinarily I'd say it would be no shock to find that some dialects go one way and others go another way, even if foreign writers don't recognize the distinction, but in this case I doubt it, because bilabial fricatives are rather unstable sounds. They have a tendency to fall to one side of the fence or the other (becoming either plosives or labiodentals). In fact, that tendency is responsible for all known occurrences of the sounds /f/ or /v/ in any language. (There was a recently published article offering a theory about why, but, even without that explanation, it's long been known that those two sounds are either mostly or entirely "recent" inventions, deriving from either /b/, /p/, or /w/ within recorded history. The theorized explanation is that /f/ and /v/ became easier to pronounce when people's tooth positions shifted as a result of changes in diet that came with agriculture.)

    It's entirely a digraph. The sound /b/ doesn't exist in Greek anymore, so they have no sound for which such a digraph would be needed; the digraph is only used when necessary for foreign words or names, like "Mparak Ompama". The closest English phenomenon is our attempts to represent /x/ as "ch", "kh", "x", or "χ".
    Thanks for all this. Very interesting.

    Grant Hutchison

  9. #11259
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Peters Creek, Alaska
    Posts
    13,587
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Then there's "Febuary". Nobody pronounces that first R.
    This nobody does...but then, it's my birth month.
    Forum Rules►  ◄FAQ►  ◄ATM Forum Advice►  ◄Conspiracy Advice
    Click http://cosmoquest.org/forum/images/buttons/report-40b.png to report a post (even this one) to the moderation team.


    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  10. #11260
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    20,009
    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    That phenomenon, called "metathesis," is not uncommon. In English a well-known example is "comfortable". When spelled, the "r" comes before the "t," but when we pronounce it, we put the "r" after the "t" ("comfterble").

    Also, we mainly pronounce "asterisk" as "asteriks".
    In these parts, comfortable is kʌmfə(r)təb(ə)l. Non-rhotic accents omit the "r", but I'm not aware of hearing it render with a "ter"--it actually took me several attempts to pronounce what you'd written, because it feels completely unnatural. Asteriks is strictly dialectical or jocular.

    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Then there's "Febuary". Nobody pronounces that first R.
    Febuary is a pronunciation that makes folks around here flinch. I still remember the first time I ever heard it--1971. My late friend Brian used to play American Pie endlessly that year, and the main thing I remember from that tedious episode (apart from how long and incomprehensible the song was) is "Feb-yoo-ary made me shiver / With every paper I'd deliver". It seemed such a bizarre pronunciation I remember wondering if there was some sort of secret message embedded in it. (As you do, if you've listened to American Pie eight times in six hours.)

    Grant Hutchison

  11. #11261
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    16,675
    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Yes. As you probably know, Ancient Greek had three bilabial plosives, π (p), β (b), and φ (ph) and no labial fricatives. Modern Greek has reduced its plosives and acquired two fricatives, repurposing φ (f) and β (v), with μπ now doing duty for a /b/ sound. But I notice that the standard Modern Greek transliteration to Latin converts μπ to "b" if it's at the start of a word, but "mp" in the middle of a word.
    So I have two questions about Modern Greek:
    Is the "v" sound symbolized by β some sort of hybrid, like the Spanish bilabial fricative (Spanish Habana / English Havana)?
    To what extent does the sound of μπ approximate "mp"? Is that merely a conventional digraph, like "ng" in English, or does it reflect a real sound quality?

    Grant Hutchison
    You’re asking the wrong woman, I did terrible in Greek School!
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  12. #11262
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    20,009
    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    You’re asking the wrong woman, I did terrible in Greek School!
    Well, that's a disappointment.

    Grant Hutchison

  13. #11263
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    5,417
    Back to taste-testing gingersnap cookies. Oh, the pain, the pain.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  14. #11264
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    Back to taste-testing gingersnap cookies. Oh, the pain, the pain.
    I feel for you.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
    https://davidsuniverse.wordpress.com/

  15. #11265
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    14,563
    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    This nobody does...but then, it's my birth month.
    Yeah, I also pronounce the r. I guess it’s a dialect thing, and that in some places in the States they don’t.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    As above, so below

  16. #11266
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    20,009
    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    Yeah, I also pronounce the r. I guess it’s a dialect thing, and that in some places in the States they don’t.
    Don McLean, who it says here wrote and performed American Pie, was born in New York state. First place to look.

    Grant Hutchison

  17. #11267
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Depew, NY
    Posts
    12,360
    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Don McLean, who it says here wrote and performed American Pie, was born in New York state. First place to look.

    Grant Hutchison
    I was born in New York, but grew up speaking Italian. When I say the r in February, people think I'm Canadian or Spanish. When I spell my last name as clearly as I can: Vee ay vee ea... I use the Italian pronunciation for letters but at least they can get the letters correct. If I go with the American pronunciation of letters with my name, people tangle up all of the V's and vowels. Biperito, Deverio, and so on. It's actually kind of comical.

    "Phil" doesn't work over the phone. It isn't supported by English, I guess. "Did you say, Bill, Will, Jill?" or any combination of sounds other than "Fill" or "Phil". Oddly, if I say "Filippo" they get that every time. They question it, but they can at least hear the proper letters.

    My wife has been known to say, "Jesus. I didn't sign up for this."
    Solfe

  18. #11268
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    16,349
    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Don McLean, who it says here wrote and performed American Pie, was born in New York state. First place to look.

    Grant Hutchison
    For the longest time I thought he was Canadian. But he's not.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  19. #11269
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Nowhere (middle)
    Posts
    38,533
    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    I feel for you.
    Did you say feel or feed?
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  20. #11270
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Clear Lake City, TX
    Posts
    13,013
    I pronounce it "Feb-ru-ar-y."

    But I do say "Wends-day." Or, if I'm in a mood, "Wo-dins-day."
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
    Isaac Asimov

    You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views.
    Doctor Who

    Moderation will be in purple.
    Rules for Posting to This Board

  21. #11271
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK and some of me is in Northern France
    Posts
    9,409
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    I pronounce it "Feb-ru-ar-y."

    But I do say "Wends-day." Or, if I'm in a mood, "Wo-dins-day."
    I got into the habit , when employed, of calling Wednesday Hump day, (being the centre of the week) while Friday of course was Poets day. But I am with you on Fe ru ar y.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  22. #11272
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    16,349
    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    I got into the habit , when employed, of calling Wednesday Hump day, (being the centre of the week) while Friday of course was Poets day. But I am with you on Fe ru ar y.
    You leave out the "B"?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  23. #11273
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK and some of me is in Northern France
    Posts
    9,409
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    You leave out the "B"?
    Guilty ; I did not mean to leave out the B, my bad typing. When I dictate, the system makes worse howlers.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  24. #11274
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    16,349
    The US Coast Guard Icebreaker Polar Star departed Seattle yesterday on its way to the Arctic. But it hasn't got far, I can see it from my window sitting stationary off the mouth of Sequim Bay!
    In the past we've seen Navy ships returning from long deployments sitting out here for a day or more waiting for their scheduled arrival time. That's gotta be tough on the crews.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  25. #11275
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    No longer near Grover's Mill
    Posts
    5,416

    Really trivial stuff that amuses you...

    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    The US Coast Guard Icebreaker Polar Star departed Seattle yesterday on its way to the Arctic. But it hasn't got far, I can see it from my window sitting stationary off the mouth of Sequim Bay!
    You’ve uncovered the great Arctic hoax!!!
    :shifty;
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  26. #11276
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    British Columbia
    Posts
    3,087
    Continuing with the r in February... I pronounce it. Many where I live don't.

    For the first time in nine years I put up a string of outdoor Christmas lights. It was a smaller effort than I used to make, just along the posts and the beam of my home's small veranda.

    Two things about this amuse me. I've only ever done this sort of decorating when my children were living here (at least part time). I've recently had an adult child boomerang home, so that must be the explanation. The other is that the world of Christmas lighting has passed by me. Everyone has strings of LEDs, but mine are the old incandescents. Oh well, they're only on a few hours in the evening, and they look... friendlier.

  27. #11277
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Depew, NY
    Posts
    12,360
    When my wife, Kitty decides to play a long with sci-fi TV shows, she doesn't play around.


    Kitty: Is that a tardigrade?
    Me: No, I think it's a space spider. Why?
    Kitty: I had a tardigrade named James, once.
    Me: Oh, yeah?
    Kitty: He's over there... someplace.
    Solfe

  28. #11278
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    14,563
    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Don McLean, who it says here wrote and performed American Pie, was born in New York state. First place to look.

    Grant Hutchison
    That's funny, because I come from the same general area (I was born in New Haven, which is on the same seaboard as New Rochelle, and I lived in Westchester County when I was a kid... It's possible it's also one of those things where I hear myself pronouncing it, but to somebody who pronounces the R more clearly they would think I'm not. But it also may be that I've lived outside of the US for a long time, so may have acquired a confused accent. I also pronounce "direction" and "data" both ways depending on the situation. I wonder if that is common.
    As above, so below

  29. #11279
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Nowhere (middle)
    Posts
    38,533
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    I pronounce it "Feb-ru-ar-y."

    But I do say "Wends-day." Or, if I'm in a mood, "Wo-dins-day."
    Odinstag. I'd write it in runes but my keyboard will not accommodate.

    As for Feb-you-airy, as with all words the way I learned it as a child is of course the right and correct way for everyone else in the world to pronounce it.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  30. #11280
    During a power outage who can tell who has a power generator.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
    https://davidsuniverse.wordpress.com/

Similar Threads

  1. Really trivial stuff that bugs you
    By Trebuchet in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 13982
    Last Post: 2021-Jan-15, 03:51 PM
  2. Trivial coincidences from everyday life.
    By Buttercup in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 171
    Last Post: 2012-Nov-02, 09:08 PM
  3. Trivial Relief:
    By Moose in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 2006-Jul-19, 01:20 PM
  4. Bad Astronomy in Trivial Pursuit, Genus 5 Edition
    By tracer in forum Small Media at Large
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 2005-May-12, 01:52 PM
  5. Trivial lawsuits are stupid, but listen to my story...
    By Brady Yoon in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 2005-Apr-28, 01:14 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •