--- In qalam@yahoogroups.com, John
Cowan <cowan@...> wrote:
> etaonsh <rcom@...> scripsit:
> > 'Tho' is accepted in US
spelling; 'Ugh' if you insist.
> Not in the U.S. spelling that
either Michael (born in the U.S.) or
I (ditto)
> ever learned, thank you very much.
I checked it out in a revised list
of US acceptability, and was
surprised to find it so. Not that
that has any influence or bearing on
my prior & unilateral decision not
to waste readers' time with
superfluous '-ughs.'
> > No it isn't. This whole topic
started because an outsider saw the
> > spelling/pronunciation
discrepancy in Irish straight away,
and was
> > kind enough to be politely
concerned about it, like a worried
> > relative.
> It's trivial compared to the
spelling/pronunciation discrepancy
in English,
> which affects many hundreds of
millions of people, causing them to
> perhaps 1-2 extra years of
Yes, that's why we have spelling
reform fora like Saundspel &
Sawndspel 2.
> > What's unusual is people
concerning themselves with matters
> > like 'preserving the basic
spelling of the root,' and 'showing
> > mutation,' as tho these things
somehow mattered to users of the
> > language, and the complete lack
of concern for ergonomics/other
> > people's time & patience.
> English is very concerned with
maintaining the similarity between
> and "national", though a more
phonemic-based spelling would give
us "neixn"
> and "naxnl", or something of the
A (misplaced?) concern for an
appearance of regularity, perhaps?
> > What about the non-conformist
abandonment of 'v' in favour of more
> > time-consuming 'f,' & 'ff' for
f? Another little worry for the
> > stranger.
> What about the abandonment in
English of a = [a], e = [e], i = [i]
> to almost every other language
that uses the Latin script?
A post-German delight in ergonomical
> > > >thus, for example, making
Manx the most phonetic of the three
> > Gaelic scripts,
> > >
> > > It isn't at all phonetic;
indeed it is rather difficult to
> > > Manx orthography to Manx
phonology. It appears that you don't
> > > what you are talking about.
> >
> > Enough to know that 'v' vrooms
better than 'bh.'
> Are you distressed by the use of
"ph" in English?
Rarer misfortunes are less
distressing, in toto.
Do you want to change
> to "fotografy"?
Depends on the modl.
> > Irish & Scots contributors to
Manx forums who uphold a Nazi-like
> > conservatism in spelling and
lecture Gaels who are fewer, more
> > vulnerable, but more modern.
> Ooops. Godwin's Law now applies:
> http://www.tuxedo.org/~esr/jargon/
> # As a Usenet discussion grows
longer, the probability of a
> # involving Nazis or Hitler
approaches one." There is a
tradition in
> # many groups that, once this
occurs, that thread is over, and
> # mentioned the Nazis has
automatically lost whatever argument
was in
> # progress. Godwin's Law thus
practically guarantees the existence
of an
> # upper bound on thread length in
those groups. However there is also
> # widely- recognized codicil that
any intentional triggering of
> # Law in order to invoke its
thread-ending effects will be
Comaish's Law also overrules it, on
odd occasions: 'That which is taboo
is likely to be a real, embarrassing
weakness of the taboo-setter.'
> > It is probably a veiled attempt
to integrate Manx, a national
> > language, as a 'dialect' of
their own, declining tongues.
> You can't have it both ways.
Either the distinct orthographies
> "unscientific" or they aren't.
The Gaeilge and Gaidhlig
> just plain work better than the
Manx one, despite their defects.
Are people counting reading/writing
time when they make these
> > Even the
> > terminology ('Gaelic and Irish')
> >
> True, but it's the least
problematic naming convention for
use in English.
Not from the Manx perspective.
> > Don't tell me the
traditionalists allowed them
anything as modern as
> > a vote on the matter - I'd find
that as hard to believe as the idea
> > that Guinness won the stout
battle democratically, much as
> > the 'flavour of the month'
monetarists would have us believe
> > things.
> Voting is altogether irrelevant to
orthography. Only usage counts.
> What do people actually *do* when
writing their language?
Here I invoke 'Dick's Tendency.'
While participating in spelling
reform forum 'Saundspel' I
self-observed an overpowering
tendency to revert to orthodox
spelling, which I attribute to the
force of habit. I thus set up
'Sawndspel 2,' which actually bans
conventional spelling.
Dick Comaish
> *plonk*