IpseDixit - English

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linguoboy
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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby linguoboy » 2018-02-02, 15:19

IpseDixit wrote:Can I consistently use 'em in place of them when speaking or is that too informal or denoting low education or something? And are there instances where switching the two of them would be outright ungrammatical?

Assuming you speak reasonably fluidly, I don't know that it would be noticed. Initial /ð/ is often dropped in colloquial speech. Just don't put a glottal stop before it or that will sound odd. And when the pronoun is stressed, dropping the /ð/ would be very jarring.

There's no problem from a grammaticality point of view, but there could be some ambiguity because unstressed 'em and unstressed 'm (for him) can sound very similar, even in dialects (unlike mine) where /i/ and /e/ don't fall together before /m/. Stressed /em/ could be mistaken for "M" or "Em", both of which could be abbreviated forms of personal names ("Em" for "Emily" or "Emma", "M" for any name beginning with "M").
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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby IpseDixit » 2018-02-02, 18:14

I see. Is 'm pronounced with [ɪ] or schwa?

linguoboy wrote:Initial /ð/ is often dropped in colloquial speech


You mean in general with any word?

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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-02-02, 18:32

IpseDixit wrote:I see. Is 'm pronounced with [ɪ] or schwa?

AFAIK, it's either syllabic or pronounced with schwa. [ɪ] would make it sound like you were saying "him" ('im).
linguoboy wrote:Initial /ð/ is often dropped in colloquial speech


You mean in general with any word?

I think he means specifically in the word them.

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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby IpseDixit » 2018-02-02, 19:37

vijayjohn wrote:
IpseDixit wrote:I see. Is 'm pronounced with [ɪ] or schwa?

AFAIK, it's either syllabic or pronounced with schwa. [ɪ] would make it sound like you were saying "him" ('im).


Isn't that kind of the point of a shortened form of "him"? :lol:

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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby linguoboy » 2018-02-02, 21:02

IpseDixit wrote:
linguoboy wrote:Initial /ð/ is often dropped in colloquial speech

You mean in general with any word?

I mean with any word. For instance, the is often reduced simply to /ə/, with context alone telling you whether a definite or indefinite article is intended.
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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby Koko » 2018-02-07, 10:58

linguoboy wrote:
IpseDixit wrote:
linguoboy wrote:Initial /ð/ is often dropped in colloquial speech

You mean in general with any word?

I mean with any word. For instance, the is often reduced simply to /ə/, with context alone telling you whether a definite or indefinite article is intended.

Well, this particular instance is not a feature in all colloquial varieties. I personally have never heard the be reduced this way here, but indeed for most other words inital /ð/ tends to be elided.

IpseDixit wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
IpseDixit wrote:I see. Is 'm pronounced with [ɪ] or schwa?

AFAIK, it's either syllabic or pronounced with schwa. [ɪ] would make it sound like you were saying "him" ('im).


Isn't that kind of the point of a shortened form of "him"? :lol:

I feel a little called out on often merging em and im to [ɘm] :para: even though i make very clear to distinguish them in writing. Generally contextual clues are enough tho, if i say "I don't like [ɘm]" after being offered mushrooms, it's pretty clear i said "'em" and not "'im."

Also this is my first encounter with 'm :hmm: I've only seen em with a vowel.

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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby linguoboy » 2018-02-07, 17:01

Koko wrote:I personally have never heard the be reduced this way here

You are not currently aware of having heard this. That's because your brain is very very good at restoring "missing" phonemes from context. I had to have someone show me a spectrogramme in order to convince me this was thing.

Koko wrote:Also this is my first encounter with 'm :hmm: I've only seen em with a vowel.

If you write 'em, I'll assume it represents them, not him.

I went fishing for examples and found this charming one from a Spanish-American war song:

I got'm bot'l'd up
I got'm bot'l'd up
I got'm bot'l'd up in the harb'r
I got'm bot'l'd up
I got'm bot'l'd up
He can't get away at all
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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby IpseDixit » 2018-05-07, 16:20

Is "any which way" a fixed phrase or is "any which" productive? E.g: can I say "any which person", "any which dog" etc etc, and if so, how does it differ from a simple "any"?

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Re: IpseDixit - English

Postby linguoboy » 2018-05-07, 17:05

IpseDixit wrote:Is "any which way" a fixed phrase or is "any which" productive? E.g: can I say "any which person", "any which dog" etc etc, and if so, how does it differ from a simple "any"?

Most of the hits I got for "any which person" were from older works, often in a legal context (e.g. "any which person, firm or corporation is hereinafter referred to as a “Prospective Employer”'"). One of the few examples in a contemporary colloquial context--"It's no different any which way– or with any which person– you do it"--shows it being used a play on the fixed phrase "any which way". So I would hesitate to call it "productive" outside of very limited contexts.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons


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