Saaropean wrote:Just a little question for the native English speakers: Would you consider "you guys" as a personal pronoun for the second person plural?
I heard that so often in North America, even in occasions where a German would never use anything else than the polite "Sie" (Spanish "ustedes").
Your comments (I mean the comments of you guys ) are appreciated.
Daniel wrote:Also, in the UK, colloquially when we want to a refer to the 2nd person singular, we just use 'you' but 'yous/youse' when referring to the 2nd person plural. This occurs in many British dialects, so it's not standard English.
JackFrost wrote:Daniel wrote:Also, in the UK, colloquially when we want to a refer to the 2nd person singular, we just use 'you' but 'yous/youse' when referring to the 2nd person plural. This occurs in many British dialects, so it's not standard English.
You can find "youse" in some dialects in the Northern USA.
Magnus wrote:I seem to remember once being told (I'm not sure how seriously, as it was via email) by somebody from somewhere in the Southern USA that in their area "y'all" was actually used for you singular (or thou if you prefer(*)) and "all y'all" was used for the plural.
JoeK wrote:Magnus wrote:I seem to remember once being told (I'm not sure how seriously, as it was via email) by somebody from somewhere in the Southern USA that in their area "y'all" was actually used for you singular (or thou if you prefer(*)) and "all y'all" was used for the plural.
oh geeze... let me think... okay.
"y'all" seems to imply a more exclusive sense of "all of you," while "all y'all" conveys a more explicit, greater sense.
When directed towards a group:
Y'all are crazy = You guys, the people I'm looking at, are crazy.
All y'all are crazy = Every single one of you, including those I don't know about, can't see, or are just within earshot, are absolutely nuts.
When directed towards individuals within a group:
Y'all need to back off = You folks, those I am specifically addressing, should calm down and give me some space
All y'all need to back off = EVERYBODY BACK BEFORE I RIP SOMEONE'S LUNGS OUT! I DON'T CARE WHO YOU ARE! FRIEND, FOE, NEUTRAL, PREGNANT WOMAN, I WILL GET ON ANYONE IN MY LINE OF SIGHT! I'M ABOUT TO BERZERK, I'M CRAZY! WATCH IT NOW!
I don't know if that helps at all, or if it even makes sense, but that's how I've always understood the two.
ChrisW wrote:I read an article a while ago claiming that "y'all" was no longer strictly a Southern thing, having become common across the US. You can hear it here in the Northeast, though "you guys" is more common. "Yous" is often used here too, especially as an unstressed object pronoun -- "You guys were here. I saw yous [pronounced 'yuhs']."
This is a bit subjective, but if I had to rate them in terms of acceptability in polite speech, it would be
Yous (unstressed object)
with "you all" the most acceptable and "yous" the most stigmatized.
"You lot" is more of a British expression, but I've occasionally heard it used by Americans. I think it might tend to sound a little brusque to American ears.
svenska84 wrote:I've read that "y'all" has been found outside of the South now, too, but I hardly ever hear it here in California. Since in California we don't have "y'all" or "yous," the list of politeness ranking would go as follows:
-You all, all of you (these are somewhat more formal)
-You guys (almost universally common)
phreaker wrote:In the midwest anything goes yous, you all, y'all, you guys. It really doesn't matter. Just "Go with the flow" so to speak.
As for thou & you here's basically how it went. Thou was originally an informal pronoun due to the Norman invasion of England (think fr. tu v. vous) and it has been shown that thou is a cognate of the german 'du' and even the romanace 'tu'. But, thou was eventually dropped around the 17th cent. and somehow it became a formal pronoun in the King James Edition of the bible and in recent revisions of the text thou only refers to god or it has been replaced with you.
Thou represents the expected outcome of Old English þú, which, with expected Germanic lengthening of the vowel in an open syllable, represents Indo-European *tu. Thou is therefore cognate with Latin, French, Spanish, Catalan, Italian, Portuguese, and Romanian tu and modern German du. A cognate form of the pronoun exists in almost every other Indo-European language.
nosafety wrote:"You" would be the proper polite way to use the 2nd person plural, possibly accompanied by such niceties as "Ladies and Gentlemen" or "Sir" as a form of address. "You guys," "you-all," or "y'all" should be fine in familiar surroundings, but it you're trying to be polite, it's not the way to go.
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