True English

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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Jeu 28 Fév - 21:42

Thank you ! anybody else can teach us new expressions ?

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Jeu 28 Fév - 22:05

Muriel,

> Thank you !
You're welcome.


Just a first remark: we have another topic ("Parlons ensemble") about Duolingo.
I'd like to say that "lingo" is a casual word for "language".
It's also a common shortened word for "language". I already wrote that Americans didn't like long words (neither do Australians) and they tend to shorten to 2 syllables especially when they intend to combine them with another word, hence DuoLingo or others.

I must say that "lingo" often has a negative connotation.

lin·go noun \ˈliŋ-(ˌ)gō\ plurallingosorlingoes

Definition of LINGO
: strange or incomprehensible language or speech: as
a: a foreign language
b: the special vocabulary of a particular field of interest
c: language characteristic of an individual

Examples of LINGO
It can be hard to travel in a foreign country if you don't speak the lingo.
The book has a lot of computer lingo that I don't understand.

Origin of LINGO
probably from Lingua Franca, language, tongue, from Occitan, from Latin lingua— more at tongue
First Known Use: 1660

Related to LINGO
Synonyms language, mother tongue, speech, tongue, vocabulary

Related Words
acrolect; argot, cant, colloquial, dialect, idiolect, idiom, jargon, parlance, patois, patter, pidgin, slang, slanguage, vernacular; colloquialism, localism, provincialism, regionalism, shibboleth, vernacularism; terminology; coinage, modernism, neologism

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Jeu 28 Fév - 22:54

Hi Muriel, hi everyone,

I'd like to stop a while on "cake" to point out that:

- "C'est du gâteau !" is the Fr expression corresponding to the En "it's a piece of cake!"

- However "C'est pas du gâteau !" doesn't have anything to do with cake in English but will be translated by "It's no picnic!"


There are other English expressions concerning "cake".
- "To get a or one's slice of the cake" or "To get a or one's share of the cake"
- "You can't have your cake and eat it"
- "That takes the cake"
Could you guess the French expressions for these last 3?

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Re: True English

Message  Guilaine le Ven 1 Mar - 11:16

The first one :
I would say : to enjoy part of the result of something in which you have participated.

The second one :
I think the French equivalent would be : on ne peut avoir le beurre et l'argent du beurre.

The third one : no idea ??
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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Ven 1 Mar - 18:47

Hi Gerard Guilaine
The third expression means"it's very good" I think
What about"The icing on the cake".In French It is the cherry on the cake
Do you know what It is?

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Ven 1 Mar - 22:52

Hi Ghislaine, Muriel, hi everyone,

gerardM a écrit:... There are other English expressions concerning "cake".
- "To get a or one's slice of the cake" or "To get a or one's share of the cake"
- "You can't have your cake and eat it"
- "That takes the cake"
Could you guess the French expressions for these last 3?
> French expressions
Could you suggest a French expression for #1? (not a proverb but an expression)
Ghislaine is right for #2 "On ne peut pas avoir le beurre et l'argent du beurre" ou "On ne peut pas tout avoir"
#3 should have an exclamation mark: "That takes the cake!"
> The third expression means"it's very good" I think
It can be said ironically ie it means something good or something bad but usually bad.
> What about"The icing on the cake".In French It is the cherry on the cake
Yes and no...
I'm looking for the French phrase...

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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Sam 2 Mar - 7:23

Hi Guilaine,Gerard,Everyone
I was looking for expressions with "cake"I found "I could eat a horse" It made me laughing:lol:

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Sam 2 Mar - 12:33

Muriel,

Yes, I understand: this is very funny. Do you have an interactive paper dictionary, considering the news too?

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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Sam 2 Mar - 22:06

gerardM a écrit:Muriel,

Yes, I understand: this is very funny. Do you have an interactive paper dictionary, considering the news too?
What do yocu mean by interactve paper dictionary please ?

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Sam 2 Mar - 22:47

Hi Muriel,
MurielB a écrit:Hi Guilaine,Gerard,Everyone
I was looking for expressions with "cake"I found "I could eat a horse" It made me laughing:lol:
What do yocu mean by interactve paper dictionary please ?
I just mean you appear to have a very up-to-date dictionary as you're looking for expressions with "cake" and you get something suggesting that cakes are made from horses. Sad

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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Sam 2 Mar - 23:30

Laughing Laughing Smile Smile

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Dim 3 Mar - 10:25

Hi Muriel, Ghislaine, hi everyone,
MurielB a écrit:I found "I could eat a horse" It made me laughing:lol:
Considering the Brits would never imagine eating this animal they do like (such as a dog, or a cat), this expression shows how hungry I have to be!!
Rather eat worms Wink

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Dim 3 Mar - 10:36

Hi Muriel, Ghislaine, hi everyone,
gerardM a écrit:Hi Ghislaine, Muriel, hi everyone,

gerardM a écrit:... There are other English expressions concerning "cake".
- "To get a or one's slice of the cake" or "To get a or one's share of the cake"
- "You can't have your cake and eat it"
- "That takes the cake"
Could you guess the French expressions for these last 3?
> French expressions
Could you suggest a French expression for #1? (not a proverb but an expression)
Ghislaine is right for #2 "On ne peut pas avoir le beurre et l'argent du beurre" ou "On ne peut pas tout avoir"
#3 should have an exclamation mark: "That takes the cake!"
> The third expression means"it's very good" I think
It can be said ironically ie it means something good or something bad but usually bad.
> What about"The icing on the cake".In French It is the cherry on the cake
Yes and no...
I'm looking for the French phrase...
MurielB a écrit:Hi Gerard Guilaine
The third expression means"it's very good" I think
What about"The icing on the cake".In French It is the cherry on the cake
Do you know what It is?
> Do you know what It is?
Yes I know what it is.

> It can be said ironically ie it means something good or something bad but usually bad.
Re the 3rd expression, I began to speak about possible sarcastic meaning...
After further investigations, I can better affirm "That takes the cake!" is at 99% negative.
Of course, it's always possible to adopt a tone that goes against the usual meaning (common in jokes) but "That takes the cake!" does denote a reproach.
The French equivalent expression is "Ca c'est le pompon !" and in French, it's also 99% negative.

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Dim 3 Mar - 10:41

- "To get a or one's slice of the cake" or "To get a or one's share of the cake"
- "You can't have your cake and eat it"
- "That takes the cake"
So, solutions are:
- "To get a or one's slice of the cake" or "To get a or one's share of the cake" / avoir sa part du gâteau
- "You can't have your cake and eat it" / On ne peut pas avoir le beurre et l'argent du beurre or On ne peut pas tout avoir
- "That takes the cake" / Ca c'est le pompon
That's it!

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Dim 3 Mar - 15:52

Hi everyone,

When I started this topic "True English", a year ago (Mer 29 Fév - 14:24), it was to speak about these parts of the language that we cannot find in school books nor with a few other learning methods but only by intense practice.

A language is made of lots of parts.
- there are domains we can find in school books and school-rooms such as grammar, approximate vocabulary

That's all!
The French are (very) good at grammar... something a bit boring when, as a teenager, we want to immediately communicate when other teens.
The vocabulary is approximate and after 7 years at school, we must go on with it: phrasal verbs, homonyms and their differences, expressions, proberbs, etc.

You know my position, in French schools, we don't learn anything about pronunciation! On the contrary, I'm used to saying Fr school destroys our pronunciation: before we can learn correctly, Fr school teaches bad habits that will stay for years... or for life! I like to add that beyond this, good English pronunciation sounds ridiculous in France and French people wouldn't understand our En language!!
Re pronunciation, the French have to fix everything, any past lessons and learn correct English... correct pronunciation is more important than grammar, and more important than vocabulary (sorry to show my anger)!!
Regarding culture, we have to learn everything as culture is important mainly if I say that to me, culture is made of every details in the language, all of the homonyms (with their degrees), all of the levels in the language (Queen's English, BBC English, cockney, casual, slang, etc.)


After 7 years of learning English in French schools, we know nothing useful: English Speaking persons don't know much about grammar and they don't care... will you speak about grammar when you go to the country?? useless in the first stage!! Vocabulary is too poor and useless in a street conversation.

It's necessary to add other learning opportunities in schooltime: personal classes, TV & radio learning, Internet, practicing (American uses a "c"), vacations in English speaking countries, etc. This for a reasonable school level mandatory for high school exams and Uni.


Now, even with what I have in mind in the last paragraph, if we want to speak correctly, with any native in the street, you must add lots of details... that's what I meant by "True English": things you don't learn from the BBC (slang, street language that you want to master), nor on vacations in the countries.
Every opportunity is needed.
You also know it: you have to practice as often as possible if you want to keep up with the language... it evolves every day and many events heard from TV is part of the day-to-day language.

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Dim 3 Mar - 16:34

Hi everyone,

There are day-to-day details we don't learn in the beginning.

For instance, what we French qualify as "grand": "un grand voyage, un grand arbre, une grande ville, une grande tour, une grande pièce, une grande marge, une grande bouche, grande amitié, grande pauvreté, un grand feu, de grands yeux, une grande famille, un grand fumeur, un grand escalier, etc." These are vere simple, doesn't every French item above make sense with "grand"? There're lots of other French examples.
What do you think about English? How would you translate "grand"? Would you be able to translate after 7 years at school? Wink
You prolly guess it depends on...

Let's take an easy example then.
How would you translate "cet enfant est grand pour son âge"?

Same variety with "petit"... "trop petit pour comprendre, petite promenade, une toute petite femme, le monde est petit, un petit gros, un petit défaut, un petit rhume, etc."

How would you translate "un homme de petite taille"?

Easy, isn't it?

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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Dim 3 Mar - 21:30

Les mots grand et petit sont intéressants Grand=big, large, long, wide, high
The child is tall for his age
Petit=Little, small, short but also mean
A little man is a dwarf but it is not correct to call a little man a dwarf

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Dim 3 Mar - 21:56

Hi Muriel,

> How would you translate "cet enfant est grand pour son âge"?
This child is tall for their age.

> How would you translate "un homme de petite taille"?


"Grand" - We may not realize but in French, there are many adjectives to speak about a large dimension: "élevé, grand, long, large, profond, haut, épais, etc.".
It's the same case in English (more words than in French); I didn't check for long but my opinion is that the French tend to use "grand" (for various things) while the Brits are more precise and tidy with an adjective dedicated to a "direction" (height, length, width, depth, thickness...) The French look a bit messy!

Yes, "cet enfant est grand pour son âge" uses "tall" as are the words with the longest dimension up (tower, building, tree...)

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Lun 4 Mar - 15:56

Hi everyone,

Something strange and funny (maybe):

- as far as I remember, there were R'n'R singers whose name included "long" due to their heights

- my grand father was not American but I remember he laughed telling me -when I was a kid- about the nickname of a friend of his "Jules, le long" because he was tall and this permitted to distinguish him from another Jules.
Why long? Was he often lying? Wink

- Johnny Hallyday has a friend whose singer name was Long Chris and this friend became his father in law; yes, he was Adeline's father.
See Wikipédia -Christian Blondiau.
I don't know if this nickname translated Christian's height.

So both in English and French, there seems to be this alternative for "tall": long to qualify the height of a guy.

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Lun 4 Mar - 22:24

Hi everyone,

So "tall" is definitely the adjective to express an important dimension in the vertical direction ie "things" which are mainly high (higher than wide or long or deep or thick, etc.): a person, a tower, a tree, a mast, grass, a building, a chimney...
Don't use another adjective: long, high or whatever, you would be wrong.

As we're at it, let's pause a while on this word to discuss a few expressions or idioms around "tall".

1st stage, questions:
it's a tall order
that's a bit of a tall order!
a tall story ou tale
to stand tall
to walk tall
to feel (about) ten feet tall
Except in these phrases, "tall" has got only one meaning, the one written above that will be translated into French by "grand" or "haut".

The expressions above are not obvious. However, I suggest to try to imagine, before searching the response.
Would you try to guess the meanings or better, the corresponding expression in French?
See ya.

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Mer 6 Mar - 22:40

Hi everyone,

gerardM a écrit:... Same variety with "petit"... "trop petit pour comprendre, petite promenade, une toute petite femme, le monde est petit, un petit gros, un petit défaut, un petit rhume, etc."

How would you translate "un homme de petite taille"?
Krystyna always uses "short".
Google uses "small".
My Oxford dictionary uses "small" or "short".

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Re: True English

Message  MurielB le Jeu 7 Mar - 21:43

Hello Gerard, everyone
Il would also say "Small short" (Size)
Young (age) This child is too young to go to school
mean, small petty (He has not a good heart)
modest (unpretentious)

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Jeu 7 Mar - 22:11

Hi Muriel, everyone,
gerardM a écrit:... Krystyna always uses "short".
Google uses "small".
My Oxford dictionary uses "small" or "short".
I just responded to "How would you translate 'un homme de petite taille'?"

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Jeu 7 Mar - 22:19

Hi everyone,

I just thought of something I didn't know till recently (I made the mistake).

... "le magasin est ouvert", "la porte est ouverte", etc.
I translated sometimes by "open", sometimes by "opened" without knowing well what to do.
In the sentences above, we must not translate by "opened"; "ouvert/ouverte" is not a past participle in English... I don't know if they call it an adjective but kinda and the translations use "open" - the shop is open; the door is open; etc.

That's what I wanted to tell you tonight.

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Re: True English

Message  gerardM le Jeu 7 Mar - 22:33

Hi everyone,

I posted something about prefixes in English or German that transformed intransitive verbs into transitive.
For instance:
- to wait for... -> to await
- (German) wachten auf+D -> erwachten+A
In German, it's mostly the be- prefix (very frequent if not a rule)


My words below are a bit different; I didn't inventory thouroughly but I wonder if it is common in English.
I'm thinking of "alive", of "awake", of "ashamed".

What do you know? what do you think?
What's the use of these a- prefixes?

Tx

Continued on  page 5

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PS: Pls note that I chose American English for my vocabulary, grammar, spelling, culture, etc.  :-)
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gerardM

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