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CHAT: IDLE CHAT: foreigners from the shires: (was: Words)

From:Raymond Brown <ray.brown@...>
Date:Thursday, September 7, 2000, 18:44
At 10:25 am -0400 7/9/00, John Cowan wrote:
>Raymond Brown wrote: > >> When I was young "foreigner" was used much more democratically - it simply >> meant 'someone not born & bred in our village' irrespective or ethicity, >> skin color, religion, language, economic status etc etc ;) > >Such, indeed, is the term "gaijin": there are Japanese and there are gaijin, >period.
But Japan is rather larger then a rural villager, methinks. :) Tho I must confess I exaggerated a bit. In actual fact ['f^rIn@r] (yes, rural Sussex is 'rhotic') meant someone born & bred outside of our county [sic], i.e. Sussex. Indeed, traditionally, the world was divided simply into two parts: Sussex and the 'Shires' (pronounced [Si:rz]). A 'foreigner' was, thus, anyone from the Shires, whether the shire concerned was close at hand, e.g. Hampshire, or rather further afield like France, Egypt, China, Japan or the US - all shires ;) Ray. ========================================= A mind which thinks at its own expense will always interfere with language. [J.G. Hamann 1760] =========================================