History Analysis / YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe

21st Mar '17 1:59:08 PM Trying2CIt
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* Don't expect most people to distinguish thou art/wast from thou beest/wert. The former pair is in the indicative mood, whereas the latter is in the subjunctive.[[note]]Later writers, though, used "wert" as the past indicative of "be". Also, "be" was already the present subjunctive of "be" for all persons and numbers, even in Shakespeare's time.[[/note]]

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* Don't expect most people to distinguish thou art/wast from thou beest/wert. The former pair is in the indicative mood, whereas the latter is in the subjunctive.[[note]]Later writers, though, used "wert" as the past indicative of "be"."be", and some used "were" as the past subjunctive of "be" for the second-person singular. Also, "be" was already the present subjunctive of "be" for all persons and numbers, even in Shakespeare's time.[[/note]]



* Interrogatives. It was not wrong to say "Where did you go?", but an absence of "Where went you?" would be unusual and distinctively Modern English.[[note]]More precisely, an interrogative is formed merely by reversing the order of the subject and the verb; the verb is placed before the subject. e.g., the interrogative of "I know you" would be "Know I you?". In today's English, however, that applies only to auxiliaries, "be", and "have" in the sense of possession, e.g., Have you any money to spare?[[/note]]

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* Interrogatives. It was not wrong to say "Where did you go?", he see it?", but an absence of "Where went you?" saw he it?" would be unusual and distinctively Modern English.[[note]]More precisely, an interrogative is formed merely by reversing the order of the subject and the verb; the verb is placed before the subject. e.g., the interrogative of "I know you" would be "Know I you?". In today's English, however, that applies only to auxiliaries, "be", and "have" in the sense of possession, e.g., Have you any money to spare?[[/note]]
7th Mar '17 4:27:10 PM Trying2CIt
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* Verbs in the past indicative ("be" excepted) have the same inflection for all persons and numbers, except for the second-person singular. The suffix "-est" is used for irregular verbs (e.g., sawest, knewest, tookest) and "-edst" for regular verbs and irregular verbs whose present and past tense forms are the same (e.g., killedst, steppedst, castedst). Special forms include "didst", "hadst", and "wouldst". Thus, "thou loved me" is wrong; it should be "thou lovedst me".

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* Verbs in the past indicative ("be" excepted) have the same inflection form for all persons and numbers, except for the second-person singular. The suffix "-est" is used for irregular verbs (e.g., sawest, knewest, tookest) and "-edst" for regular verbs and irregular verbs whose present and past tense forms are the same (e.g., killedst, steppedst, castedst). Special forms include "didst", "hadst", and "wouldst". Thus, "thou loved me" is wrong; it should be "thou lovedst me".



* Unlike almost all other auxiliaries, "must" has absolutely no change in inflection, not even for the second-person singular.[[note]]It once did, in Middle English, but the "-est" suffix was discarded probably to make it a monosyllable and thus ease communication.[[/note]]

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* Unlike almost all other auxiliaries, "must" has absolutely no change in inflection, form, not even for the second-person singular.[[note]]It once did, in Middle English, but the "-est" suffix was discarded probably to make it a monosyllable and thus ease communication.[[/note]]



* The forms of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of another mood or a certain auxiliary of the subjunctive. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.
** Conditionals and concessive clauses are tricky. "If the hero be guilty" and "if the hero is guilty" mean two different things. The former has the speaker doubt whether the hero is guilty, whereas the latter has the speaker assume the hero's guilt to be true. The same applies for "though he slay men" and "though he slays men" (except this time the time of the verb with the subjunctive inflection is either present or future, and "though" there really means "even if"). The subjunctive shows doubt, and the indicative shows actuality or reality.
** For time clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because the subordinate verb has not occurred in relation to the verb in the main clause (e.g., "Leave before my master find thee").
** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because the speaker means to indicate desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").

to:

* The forms of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of another mood or a certain auxiliary of the subjunctive. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections forms as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.
forms.
** Conditionals and concessive clauses are tricky. "If the hero be guilty" and "if the hero is guilty" mean two different things. The former has the speaker doubt whether the hero is guilty, whereas the latter has the speaker assume the hero's guilt to be true. The same applies for "though he slay men" and "though he slays men" (except this time the time of the verb with the subjunctive inflection form is either present or future, and "though" there really means "even if"). The subjunctive shows doubt, and the indicative shows actuality or reality.
** For time clauses, the subjunctive inflection form is used because the subordinate verb has not occurred in relation to the verb in the main clause (e.g., "Leave before my master find thee").
** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection form is used because the speaker means to indicate desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection form for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").



** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "had rather" ("would rather" appeared later) or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition clause and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]

to:

** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection form you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "had rather" ("would rather" appeared later) or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition clause and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]



* The past tense inflections of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake" might be used for "broke", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke". Also, some irregular verbs of today seemed to be regular verbs back then. For instance, "builded" for "built" and "digged" for "dug". And some regular verbs of today seemed to be irregular verbs back then. For instance, "clomb" for "climbed", and "holp" for "helped".

to:

* The past tense inflections forms of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake" might be used for "broke", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke". Also, some irregular verbs of today seemed to be regular verbs back then. For instance, "builded" for "built" and "digged" for "dug". And some regular verbs of today seemed to be irregular verbs back then. For instance, "clomb" for "climbed", and "holp" for "helped".
4th Mar '17 11:46:02 PM Trying2CIt
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* The inflections of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of the indicative or a certain auxiliary of the subjunctive. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.

to:

* The inflections forms of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of the indicative another mood or a certain auxiliary of the subjunctive. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.



** A bit less obvious, but expressions such as "be it enacted" or "God bless America" are really subjunctives, which is made clearer since the verbs are not inflected for the third-person singular in those phrases. They really are archaic ways to say "let it be enacted" and "May God bless America".
** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "had rather" ("would rather" appeared later) or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]

to:

** A bit less obvious, but expressions such as "be it enacted" or "God bless America" are really subjunctives, which is made clearer since the verbs are not inflected for the third-person singular in those phrases. They really are archaic ways to say "let it be enacted" (imperative in form) and "May God bless America".
** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "had rather" ("would rather" appeared later) or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition clause and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]
21st Feb '17 11:09:41 PM Trying2CIt
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* Misusing "yon". It wasn't just some archaic equivalent for "that"; it indicated something over in the distance. In other words, "yon" suggests that something is much more distant but still noticeable to the speaker than "that" would. And "yon", "yond", and "yonder" could be used interchangeably as adjectives and adverbs, in case you were wondering. Also, "yon" had no plural form, unlike "this" or "that", so "yon window" and "yon windows" are both correct.
* The inflections of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of the indicative or an auxiliary of the same mood. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.
** Conditionals and concessive clauses are tricky. "If the hero be guilty" and "if the hero is guilty" mean two different things. The former has the speaker doubt whether the hero is guilty, whereas the latter has the speaker assume the hero's guilt to be true. The same applies for "though he slay men" and "though he slays men" (except this time the time of the verb with the subjunctive inflection is future, and "though" there really means "even if"). The subjunctive shows doubt, and the indicative shows actuality or reality.

to:

* Misusing "yon". It wasn't just some archaic equivalent for "that"; it indicated something over in the distance. In other words, "yon" suggests that something is much more distant but still noticeable to the speaker than "that" would. More precisely, "this" refers to what is close to the speaker, "that" to what is close to the addressee, and "yon" to what is distant but still noticeable to both (i.e., "over there"). And "yon", "yond", and "yonder" could be used interchangeably as adjectives and adverbs, in case you were wondering. Also, "yon" had no plural form, unlike "this" or "that", so "yon window" and "yon windows" are both correct.
* The inflections of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of the indicative or an a certain auxiliary of the same mood.subjunctive. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.
** Conditionals and concessive clauses are tricky. "If the hero be guilty" and "if the hero is guilty" mean two different things. The former has the speaker doubt whether the hero is guilty, whereas the latter has the speaker assume the hero's guilt to be true. The same applies for "though he slay men" and "though he slays men" (except this time the time of the verb with the subjunctive inflection is either present or future, and "though" there really means "even if"). The subjunctive shows doubt, and the indicative shows actuality or reality.
12th Feb '17 2:34:05 PM Trying2CIt
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* Pronouncing "saith" as "sayeth". "Saith", like "says", sounds quite a bit different from "say", as it is more accurately pronounced as "seth". "Sayeth" was a later invention and is pronounced exactly as it appears.

to:

* Pronouncing "saith" as "sayeth". "Saith", like "says", sounds quite a bit different from "say", as it is more accurately pronounced as "seth". "Sayeth" was a later invention and is pronounced exactly as it appears. It was almost certainly so for the second-person singular; "saist" (which, oddly enough, is not spelled as consistently as "saith") sounds more like "sest".



** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "would rather" or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]

to:

** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "would "had rather" ("would rather" appeared later) or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]
12th Feb '17 3:32:04 AM Trying2CIt
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** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because the verb indicates desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").

to:

** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because the verb indicates speaker means to indicate desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").



* The past tense inflections of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake" might be used for "broke", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke".

to:

* The past tense inflections of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake" might be used for "broke", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke". Also, some irregular verbs of today seemed to be regular verbs back then. For instance, "builded" for "built" and "digged" for "dug". And some regular verbs of today seemed to be irregular verbs back then. For instance, "clomb" for "climbed", and "holp" for "helped".
12th Feb '17 3:22:35 AM Trying2CIt
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** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because it indicates desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").

to:

** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because it the verb indicates desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").
12th Feb '17 3:20:40 AM Trying2CIt
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* The past tense inflections of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake " might be used for "brake", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke".

to:

* The past tense inflections of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake " "brake" might be used for "brake", "broke", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke".
12th Feb '17 3:19:40 AM Trying2CIt
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Added DiffLines:

* The inflections of the subjunctive mood were used where we now use those of the indicative or an auxiliary of the same mood. Many people may unfortunately misread the subjunctive inflections as indicative ones or mistakes and miss the intended meaning. It doesn't help that even old writers did not always discriminate between the different inflections.
** Conditionals and concessive clauses are tricky. "If the hero be guilty" and "if the hero is guilty" mean two different things. The former has the speaker doubt whether the hero is guilty, whereas the latter has the speaker assume the hero's guilt to be true. The same applies for "though he slay men" and "though he slays men" (except this time the time of the verb with the subjunctive inflection is future, and "though" there really means "even if"). The subjunctive shows doubt, and the indicative shows actuality or reality.
** For time clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because the subordinate verb has not occurred in relation to the verb in the main clause (e.g., "Leave before my master find thee").
** For purpose clauses, the subjunctive inflection is used because it indicates desire (e.g., "Gather everything in order that nothing be lost", "See to it that they be given the treasure"). Even today, we use the subjunctive inflection for "lest" clauses (e.g., "Leave lest he catch you").
** A bit less obvious, but expressions such as "be it enacted" or "God bless America" are really subjunctives, which is made clearer since the verbs are not inflected for the third-person singular in those phrases. They really are archaic ways to say "let it be enacted" and "May God bless America".
** The main clause of unreal conditionals might not use the subjunctive inflection you're used to seeing. "It were foolish to do that if I were in his shoes" really means "It would be foolish to do that if I were in his shoes". And "if it had not rained, he had arrived there" really means "if it had not rained, he would have arrived there". In fact, the more extensive use of the past subjunctive is where expressions such as "would rather" or "had better" come from.[[note]]An identical sentence structure for those conditionals is used in German, in which language it is much more obvious that the verbs in both the condition and the main clause are subjunctives.[[/note]]
* Elizabethan English contracts many words that we don't contract today. For instance, "e'en" for "even", "th'" for "the", "'t" for "it", and "o'er" for "over".
* The past tense inflections of several irregular verbs are not necessarily the same as those we use today. For instance, "brake " might be used for "brake", "gat" for "got", and "spake" for "spoke".
11th Jan '17 11:14:31 PM Trying2CIt
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** Shakespeare rarely used "-s" and "-eth" with a plural subject, but those uses were in the vast minority and were seen by later grammarians and modern editors as errors, dialectal or antiquated usage, or uses done for the sake of the work or for no adequate explanation. For comparison, the King James Bible, quite conservative in its language, reserves "-eth" only for the third-person singular, has no plural ending, and does not use "-s" at all. And if the English grammar written by Ben Jonson, a learned contemporary of Shakespeare's, indicates anything, the correct use for those suffixes lies in only the third-person singular. It's safe to say that "-eth" and "-s" were correctly used only for the third-person singular.

to:

** Shakespeare rarely used "-s" and "-eth" with a plural subject, but those uses were in the vast minority and were seen by later grammarians and modern editors as errors, dialectal or antiquated usage, or uses done for the sake of the work rhythm or for no adequate explanation. For comparison, the King James Bible, quite conservative in its language, reserves "-eth" only for the third-person singular, has no plural ending, and does not use "-s" at all. And if the English grammar written by Ben Jonson, a learned contemporary of Shakespeare's, indicates anything, the correct use for those suffixes lies in only the third-person singular. It's safe to say that "-eth" and "-s" were correctly used only for the third-person singular.



* Misusing "yon". It wasn't just some archaic equivalent for "that"; it indicated something over in the distance. And "yon", "yond", and "yonder" could be used interchangeably as adjectives and adverbs, in case you were wondering.

to:

* Misusing "yon". It wasn't just some archaic equivalent for "that"; it indicated something over in the distance. In other words, "yon" suggests that something is much more distant but still noticeable to the speaker than "that" would. And "yon", "yond", and "yonder" could be used interchangeably as adjectives and adverbs, in case you were wondering. Also, "yon" had no plural form, unlike "this" or "that", so "yon window" and "yon windows" are both correct.
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