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Re: You have a word for it?

From:Roger Mills <romilly@...>
Date:Monday, January 28, 2002, 1:08
Padraic Brown wrote:

>Am 27.01.02, Fabian yscrifef: > >> > > >Yehy is the masculine counterpart of Miss -- the title for an >> > > >unmarried man. > >> > > We NEEEEEED this word in English. Honestly. > >> > I disagree. I think we need to ditch the distinction between married >> > woman and unmarried woman. >> >> Back about 150 years ago, the common word for this was 'master', and >> exactl;y equivalent to 'miss'. > >Mister is just a weakened form of Master; as Missus is a >weakened form of Mistress. I use Miss and Mister regardless. > >Master was also in fairly common use much more recently. When >I was little, older relatives addressed cards and such with >"Master". I've never used it for anyone.
Tristan's "150 years ago" prompted me to think, ah yes, when I was a wee one. Nice to see someone else in the same category. :-) I think Ms. for adult women of unknown marital status is quite useful. I don't feel that Mr. implies a married man; it's also true that we shouldn't be concerned about it in either case, but..... Obviously, a language needs some polite way to address strangers. In Indonesia, where "married" is almost a default status, any unknown man is called Bapak, less formal pak 'father'; any unknown woman Ibu or bu 'mother', and that can be used even if you find out the lady is unmarried.


Tristan Alexander McLeay <anstouh@...>Italians Qs (Stolen; was Re: You have a word for it?)
Dennis Paul Himes <himes@...>