Re: USAGE: THEORY/USAGE: irregular English plurals (was: RE: [CONLANG] Optimum number of symbols
|From:||Jan van Steenbergen <ijzeren_jan@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, May 28, 2002, 6:07|
--- And Rosta wrote:
> > Okay, I won't stand up lonely against a whole bunch of anglophones :)
> You seem to be an anglophone too!
:blushing: I'm afraid I still have a long way to go ;)
> AFAIK, _police_ obligatorily requires plural verb concord in all dialects
> of English. Given that fact, it would be hard to argue that it is not
> plural (though with a change of sense to 'member of the class of
> (national) police forces') we do have the rare forms _a police_,
You convinced me! It's really funny how different English is from other
languages. This is, I think, a good example. Apparently, unlike in other
languages (those language that I know, at least), the verb form attracted by a
nouns (along with the answer to the question whether or not something is a
plural) depends fully on their logical meaning.
BTW The form "a police" - "polices" sounds to me a bit like children's
language. When my brother was small, he used to talk about "een politie" and
"polities" when he actually meant to say "cop" or "cops". Those are
grammatically completely illegal forms, though.
"You know, I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought,
wouldn't it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that
happen to us come because we actually deserve them? So, now I take great
comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe." --- J.
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