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Obsolete words that shouldn't be

  • 12-01-2013 8:49am
    #1
    Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 32,639 mod pickarooney


    My grandfather often used the word 'ereyesterday' to describe the day before yesterday. I never thought much of it as there are quite a number of words and expressions which seem to exist uniquely within my father's family.

    It was only years later when I learned the word 'eergisteren' in Dutch that it occurred to me that it might actually be an old English word, and so it turned out to be.

    http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/ereyesterday

    Does anyone still use this term? It seems a pity to use the long-winded 'the day before yesterday' when there's a succinct form.

    Any other words we should resuscitate?


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Comments



  • I quite like thrice (once, twice, thrice) and sennight (week).




  • I never heard of sennight before. Does it predate 'week'?




  • Ruthful. It's the opposite of ruthless, and it comes from the Old Testement where Ruth was a very good and thoughtful person.




  • Reminds me of a site called savethewords.org which i've unfortunately just discovered doesn't work any more. :(

    It was about little used words that had been dropped by the Oxford English Dictionary but it was still interesting. Here's a Wired article about it.




  • Ye, as in did ye see that . I find it very useful, but its use seems to be frowned upon.


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  • I never heard of sennight before. Does it predate 'week'?

    I'm not sure if one predates the other, but I think sennight is Middle English while week is German (woche), perhaps the latter eclipsed the former over time as speakers of Germanic origin gained influence at court in England? Trading (e.g. the Hanseatic League) is another way to influence a language too, I guess.




  • I still use ye and thrice. Why wouldn't you use thrice?




  • I like this one:

    Deliciate
    Verb intr. – “To take one’s pleasure, enjoy oneself, revel, luxuriate” – Often I feel the word “enjoy” just isn’t enough to describe an experience, and “revel” tends to conjure up images of people dancing and spinning around in circles – at least in my head. “Deliciate” would be a welcome addition to the modern English vocabulary, as in “After dinner, we deliciated in chocolate cream pie.”

    From:
    Read more at http://matadornetwork.com/abroad/20-obsolete-english-words-that-should-make-a-comeback/#VSeHtY2Tw08lDkQx.99




  • My grandfather often used the word 'ereyesterday' to describe the day before yesterday. I never thought much of it as there are quite a number of words and expressions which seem to exist uniquely within my father's family.

    It was only years later when I learned the word 'eergisteren' in Dutch that it occurred to me that it might actually be an old English word, and so it turned out to be.

    http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/ereyesterday

    Does anyone still use this term? It seems a pity to use the long-winded 'the day before yesterday' when there's a succinct form.

    Any other words we should resuscitate?

    My father uses ereyesterday too. What part of the country is your grandfather from?




  • BigCon wrote: »
    My father uses ereyesterday too. What part of the country is your grandfather from?

    North Kilkenny by the Carlow border.


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  • I like the local usaege of the 'imaginary' directions, 'hither', 'thither', 'whither', 'yonder' and 'hence' - all are very common in East Anglia where we presently live most of the time. I also hear 'ere' as in 'ere nine o'clock struck, ........'

    tac




  • Please, thank you & excuse me. Pretty much disappeared from people's vocabulary *shakes stick*




  • tac foley wrote: »
    I like the local usaege of the 'imaginary' directions, 'hither', 'thither', 'whither', 'yonder' and 'hence' - all are very common in East Anglia where we presently live most of the time. I also hear 'ere' as in 'ere nine o'clock struck, ........'

    tac

    Yon(der) was another great one of my granddad's.




  • I like 'yea' ("yay") as in old usage of so"- e.g. "I'm looking for a box about yea big" (said while indicating how big with your hands, or by holding one hand off the floor). I hardly ever hear it said these days.




  • verily!




  • Yakuza wrote: »
    I like 'yea' ("yay") as in old usage of so"- e.g. "I'm looking for a box about yea big" (said while indicating how big with your hands, or by holding one hand off the floor). I hardly ever hear it said these days.


    Ah so, Yakuza-san- just to let you know that 'yea' as in 'roughly this', is alive and kicking and living here in MY house, and all over Canada and the NWP USA.

    I've certainly used it all my life that I can recall.

    tac




  • I never knew that "yea big" was an old expression. I thought it was an American neologism.

    edit:
    http://en.allexperts.com/q/Etymology-Meaning-Words-1474/yea-yeah.htm




  • 1960, eh?

    Well. all I know is that I'm a good bit older that that, and my Uncle Geoff used to use it when describing crops as 'yea high' in the '50s.

    Still, I won't argue with you, but smile and move right on.

    tac




  • tac foley wrote: »
    1960, eh?

    Well. all I know is that I'm a good bit older that that, and my Uncle Geoff used to use it when describing crops as 'yea high' in the '50s.

    Still, I won't argue with you, but smile and move right on.

    tac

    Sometimes you get that when a word is 'first referenced' by someone in authority and you realise that they just weren't listening to the right people before.




  • I first heard it from a friend's father who would have grown up in the Cavan-Leitrim area in the 1940's/1950's and it was normally used to describe heights back then, I'm a bit surprised to hear it described as a neologism, but who am I to argue with the Internet?


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  • Zounds ftw!




  • efb wrote: »
    Zounds ftw!

    Love that, and 'zblood!




  • also egad(s)




  • Hey lads, my colleagues and I just discovered this thread looking for the correct pronunciation of 'ereyesterday' (we already use overmorrow daily). As I saw some of you have relatives using this word, could you give us a hint? Thanks!




  • ngetal wrote: »
    Hey lads, my colleagues and I just discovered this thread looking for the correct pronunciation of 'ereyesterday' (we already use overmorrow daily). As I saw some of you have relatives using this word, could you give us a hint? Thanks!


    1. Welcome - although I really haven't been here long enough to say that, I guess.

    2. Say 'AIR-yesterday'. There is a fada/French-style acute accent over the first 'e' - you'll see it spelled as éreyesterday.

    3. 'Overtomorrow' is a new one to me, but is also mirrored in Old Norse and Old Swedish as well. It might, like me, be a survival from the invasion times of the 6-7-8th centuries...

    tac




  • Love that, and 'zblood!


    Yups, both of them are curtailments of oaths/exclamations from the late Middle Ages - 'God's Blood' and 'God's wounds'.

    In Québec you'll here a LOT of formerly profane oaths/exclamations - like 'Tabernac!' and so on.

    tac




  • tac foley wrote: »
    I like the local usaege of the 'imaginary' directions, 'hither', 'thither', 'whither', 'yonder' and 'hence' - all are very common in East Anglia where we presently live most of the time. I also hear 'ere' as in 'ere nine o'clock struck, ........'

    tac

    Norfolk? I've lived in Cambridgeshire and West Suffolk and can't recall having heard them used at all.

    I use 'hence' a lot but not as a tool to indicate a direction. :)




  • r3nu4l wrote: »
    Norfolk? I've lived in Cambridgeshire and West Suffolk and can't recall having heard them used at all.

    I use 'hence' a lot but not as a tool to indicate a direction. :)


    I play trains along with three old boys in their 70's, and they ALL use them. All three have a lifetime working as farm labourers and traction/road locomotive drivers - the kind of things you'd still see at county show - and, in fact, all three still drive or fire some big steamers.

    Perhaps the folks you knew were too high up the property ladder to use dialect, but all three of my acquaintances, talking together, are almost totally incomprehensible.

    tac




  • I have read recently (source not to hand) that "Eeny meeny miny mo" is very old indeed, and is thought to be in continuous use since prehistoric times.


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  • We definitely should still be using the correct terms for the subdivisions on the imperial side of a ruler. The world would be a jollier place entirely if people still referred to the barleycorn (third of an inch), and the poppyseed (quarter of a barleycorn).

    On a side note, thanks OP. Never thought I'd have the opportunity to drop these ones into a conversation!


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