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Re: USAGE: Hither, thither and yon (was Re: Weekly Vocab 26)

From:Paul Bennett <paul-bennett@...>
Date:Monday, October 20, 2003, 0:13
On 19 Oct 2003 at 18:07, Tristan McLeay wrote:

> On Sun, 19 Oct 2003, Roger Mills wrote: > > > Paul Bennett/A.Walker/M.Reed have discussed-- > > > What about the phrase "Hither, thither and yon", which I've > > > encountered in quasi-archiac contexts (i.e. from my Grandparents) > > > meaning "All over the place"? Is this something unique to both sets > > > of my grandparents (from different regional and social lects), or is > > > it just British, or is it archaic, or what is the exact distribution? > > > > > Yes, that's familiar to me too, in a grandparently context; the 3 who were > > US-born were pure upper midwest in speech. > > Funny, I'd associated it with British. But then, Archaic and British are > almost synonyms to me, conceptually :) (It doesn't help that my > grandmother---the Australian one---uses archaisms and sounds relatively > British. Or maybe she sounds British because she uses them. At any rate, > she used 'us' in the singular a while ago, something I've never heard my > parents (or any of their generation) do, so she's either copied it off my > generation (unlikely) or it skipped a generation or something. Is singular > us used in Britain? (e.g. 'pass us the knife' was what she said)).
Very, very commonly in a number of regional low-register dialects. I suspect, in fact, that it's becoming the 1st person dative form in some dialects. The complete list of English pronouns in some dialects is thus: "I" /Aj/ Nominative and list-reciting (the 1st Person, when used in lists of people, is always moved to the end of the list and always placed in the nominative) "me" /mi/ Accusative "my" /mI/ ~ /m@/ Genetive "us" /@s/ Dative. Paul


Paul Bennett <paul-bennett@...>