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Antiquated Linguistics

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Kaiba: Your brash nature offends me, Mr. Muto! I shall soon put an end to your impertinence!
Yami: You have assembled several creatures! Surely this is a violation?
Kaiba: My affluence makes a nonsense of the regulations!
Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series, Episode 35 (this scene, in particular, is a parody of old black and white silent films).

A lot of clichés surround the English language as it was used in the 18th and 19th centuries: a tendency not to shorten or abbreviate words (except some words like "mustn't" that are ironically not typically abbreviated today); an abundance of hyphens (not only for compound words, but even for words with more clearly defined prefixes or suffixes); a fondness for now-outmoded typographical conventions such as the long s (ſ); and, of course, a love of Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness and Purple Prose.

Put any of these quirks together, and you get Antiquated Linguistics: the Theme Park Version of language from the Georgian and Victorian Eras. Works set between about 1700 and 1930 are particularly susceptible to this trope, but it's by no means limited to them; some creators dip into Antiquated Linguistics for comic effect or simply to mark a particular character's speech pattern as old-fashioned. Expect a Dastardly Whiplash type to speak in this manner. Affecting this kind of English can often serve as a Translation Convention.

Not to be confused with other, separate Theme Park Versions of old-fashioned English: Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe (generic Medieval/Renaissance lingo, a.k.a. "gadzookery"), Flowery Elizabethan English (ornate language smelling vaguely of Shakespeare and/or the King James Bible), and Talk Like a Pirate (arrrr). Compare and contrast Buffy Speak and Spock Speak. Contrast Period Piece, Modern Language, when the writers don't bother with this and just have the historical characters talk like 21st-century casuals. And, for those who can't get enough of Antiquated Linguistics, this page is also available in a self-demonstrating version.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Castle Town Dandelion, unlike all his other siblings and in spite of being 6, Teru uses terms like Hahaue for his mother Satsuki, as well as Aniue for Shu and Oneesama for Hikari.
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, the setting takes place in Japan's Taisho Period, which is set in 1912 onwards. Most human and demon characters aren't overly polite, but a really powerful demon, Kokushibo, was a human from, at the very least, 300 years prior the current setting and with that he speaks in extremely antiquated Japanese. How much of that is translated into English varies within fan translation efforts, the official Viz Media translation puts a little more effort in adapting Kokushibo's manner of speaking from time to time.
  • In the English version of the Dragon Ball manga, the reincarnated Piccolo's prose is so formal and theatrical that it has the added benefit of making him seem Wicked Cultured. In the original Japanese, he also speaks in a refined manner, but not nearly as much as the Viz translation would imply.note 
  • Senko of The Helpful Fox Senko-san, being an 800-year-old harvest deity, speaks with long-disused Japanese. The English translations tend to mirror this by giving her very formal speech, and peppering lots of "Dears" about as a grandmother would.
  • Heard from Kuroh Yatogami in K, a swordsman from a secluded mountain area who comes to Tokyo to fulfill his late master's request. This can make his interactions with other, more modern characters interesting.
    Kuroh: Be warned that if you choose to fight me, I shall show no mercy!
    Yata: Fuck you!
  • In Kannagi: Crazy Shrine Maidens, Nagi's obsolete Japanese is translated into Antiquated Linguistics, with a hint of J. R. R. Tolkien for good measure. ("Fool of a Jin!")
  • Kotaro Lives Alone: Kotaro talks like a samurai, since his role model is the samurai character Tonosaman. For some reason, the character uses the first person pronoun warawa, which is historically used by female nobility.
  • Lupin III's Goemon Ishikawa speaks in an archaic way, due to fashioning himself as an old-school samurai. For example, he uses the Japanese Pronoun sessha (lit. my humble self) for himself, an old and now extinct pronoun formally used by samurai.
  • Kinemon and the other samurai of Wano Country from One Piece use an antiquated form of Japanese, which is reflected in some translations. Appropriate considering that Wano Country itself, In-Universe, is an isolationist nation who keeps strangers at bay.
  • Ōoku: The Inner Chambers switches to this trope from Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe around the time the story enters the eighteenth century, in an attempt to translate the painstakingly formal court language of the Edo court at the time (which nonetheless used more modern forms of talking and adress).
  • In Chinese dubs of Ranma ˝, the Running Gag of Anime Chinese Girl Shampoo is that she speaks in the Chinese equivalent to this trope, to convey how "out of touch" she is with the modern world. In the original Japanese dubs, she instead exclusively uses Keigo dialect, which is the Japanese analogue to this trope. The English dub instead changes the gag to her using a highly broken dialect that combines elements of Hulk Speak and You No Take Candle, as the connotations of "people think she's stupid for talking this way" don't exist—or at least not to the same extent, causing the simpler speech to more accurately convey the "feel" of the trope as it's being applioed.
  • Sekirei: Tsukiumi speaks in archaic Japanese, like using the pronoun "ware" to refer to herself (as opposed to the more modern "watashi"). The English dub adapts this into Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe.
  • Zombie Land Saga gives us Yugiri, who speaks an archaic dialect of Japanese. Of course, she died in the nineteenth century, so this is completely justified.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Barbie as the Princess and the Pauper has a downplayed and definitely intentional example. When Erika tries talking like a princess while impersonating Anneliese she's very formal and stops using contractions.
  • The films of the tradition-obsessed Hungarian animation director Marcell Jankovics, Johnny Corncob, Son of the White Horse and The Tragedy of Man take their dialogue verbatim from their sources: Johnny Corncob and The Tragedy of Man are adaptations of a folklore inspired epic poem and a grandiose historical-philosophical drama respectively, both from the 19th century. Son of the White Horse goes back even further to ancient folk legends. It's so old, it has a character whose name even linguists struggle to make sense of, though they're sure it would nowadays be considered an expletive.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Characters from 1885 in Back to the Future Part III use archaic language, which leads into a Subverted Catchphrase joke about "Nobody Calls Me "Chicken"!" becoming "nobody calls me yellow". On the DVD Commentary, screenwriter Robert Gale says he turned to Mark Twain's writings to attempt the American vernacular of the period.
  • A sudden outburst in Con Air, courtesy of the one and only John Malkovich:
    Cyrus the Virus: It's not difficult to surmise Nathan's feelings towards killing these guards; and my own proclivities are well-known and often-lamented facts of penal lore.
  • A Field in England is set in the 17th century, and the dialogue is like this.
  • The characters in Ivan Vasilievich Changes Profession speak Russian with slightly antiquated grammar and employ words no longer in wide usage, yet still are recognizable by the audience (mostly through the Russian Orthodox Church's use of Old Church Slavonic).
  • Kate & Leopold has the impeccably Victorian politeness of Duke Leopold...which, of course, the others assume is only an act.
  • The Lord of the Rings uses the trope as well: "It would seem like wisdom but for the warning in my heart."
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Thor exhibits a formal and slightly antiquated manner of speaking, as does Loki. (In most Marvel Universe comic books, by contrast, the Asgardians use Flowery Elizabethan English instead.)
      Loki: You need the cube to bring me home, but I've sent it off, I know not where.
    • Tony Stark lampshades this in The Avengers when he meets Thor:
      Thor: You have no idea what you are dealing with.
      Iron Man: Ah, "Shakespeare in the Park"? Doth mother know you weareth her drapes?
      [Thor actually smiles slightly]
    • In Avengers: Infinity War, Doctor Strange uses formal phrases like "hitherto undreamt of" that earn him mockery from more vulgar heroes like Iron Man. Given that he didn't speak this way prior to becoming the Sorcerer Supreme, it seems likely that he's playing it up for dramatic effect, if he's not just used to speaking that way among his fellow magicians.
  • Captain Jack Sparrow tends toward this style in Pirates of the Caribbean Captain Hector Barbarossa is no stranger to it, either.
    Barbarossa: I'm disinclined to acquiesce to your request.
    Elizabeth Swann: *confused stare*
    Barbarossa: Means 'no.'
  • Time Changer is noted for its tendency to employ this trope. (In the words of one reviewer: "Victorian speech apparently consisted of big words, no contractions, and saying 'sir' a whole lot.")
  • All of the dialogue in Robert Eggers' films The VVitch and The Lighthouse, appropriately enough given that they're both period pieces. The VVitch took some of its dialogue from actual court documents from colonial New England, while Wake in The Lighthouse uses lots of old-timey sailor slang in particular (such as "wickie", an archaic term for a lighthouse keeper).
  • The young characters in Youth in Revolt use a rather astonishingly sophisticated style. On the other hand, Nick does wish to be a writer.

  • Older Than Television: In the 1920s and surrounding years, H. P. Lovecraft wrote in a style heavily evocative of the 1890s. The trope is further perpetuated (or even aggravated) by Lovecraft's many imitators.
    • Also, his short novel The Case of Charles Dexter Ward contains a few letters written in the style and spirit of the 18th century.
    • It's worth noting that Lovecraft himself was influenced by Lord Dunsany.
      • As Ursula Le Guin noted, in writing fantasy to be used sparingly, if you yourself are not a 19th C. Anglo-Irish aristocrat.
    • For that matter, as the original stories of Conan the Barbarian by Robert E. Howard suggest, Lovecraft was far from the only one writing in a slightly throwback style in that era.
  • Lord Dunsany (who was born in the 19th Century but lived well into the 20th) was famous for his use of archaicisms to give an otherworldly feel to his stories.
  • In The Accursed Kings it is noted how the nobles of the English court (all of French-Norman heritage) speak an antiquated version of the continental French, being stuck with a descendant the language they used to speak in William's The Conqueror's reign, heavily influenced at this point by (Middle) English.note 
  • The Aubrey-Maturin novels indulge in the language of Napoleonic Wars.
  • In The Bartimaeus Trilogy, Nathaniel summons and commands the eponymous spirit with very flowery, archaic language. Bartimaeus mostly finds it pretentious and vaguely annoying.
  • In the original German version of Dragon Rider, non-human characters never call anyone Sie (the usual polite form of 'you'), preferring to address even a superior with either the familiar 'du' or the archaic, ultra-deferential 'Ihr'. This is the plural of 'du', and, used to address a single person, is the second-person equivalent of a king referring to himself as 'We', and is never used in modern German outside of fiction. However, bearing in mind that many fantastic beings are either hundreds of years old or have not had much contact with humans since the Middle Ages, it is understandable that their speech patterns are different from ours. Generally, tyrants like Nettlebrand and Kraa expect to be addressed as 'Ihr', while more easy-going leaders like Shrii prefer 'du'. However, fantastic beings who have previously served a despot may feel more comfortable addressing anyone they see as an authority figure as 'Ihr'. Twigleg still calls Ben 'Ihr' even when they have been close friends for several years, and in spite of the fact that he is Ben's teacher.
  • The Famous Five: One reference not changed in modern reprints is "field glasses" to mean binoculars.
  • The Introductions to the Penguin translations of the Germinal novels explicitly discuss trying to avert this trope. (The translators felt that what Zola wished to accomplish would be better rendered in modern English vernacular than in something overtly equivalent to the 19th-century French in which Zola wrote.)
  • Kōyō Ozaki, famous for The Golden Demon, was known for writing in a highly poetic and archaic, The Tale of Genji-eque Japanese despite being from the Meiji period, to the point where his works have had to be translated for modern readers.
  • The Horatio Hornblower novels use more modern language than the time period they were set in, but with some distinctly Napoleonic era phrasing. For example, "nice" is often used to mean "precise" (as in a navigational task that requires nice calculation), which was the meaning before it shifted to "pleasant."note 
  • Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell manages a pitch-perfect turn-of-the-19th-century style, at times redolent of Jane Austen.
  • The vampires in The Saga of Darren Shan speak this way, being mostly centuries-old immortals who live apart from changing human societies.
  • Downplayed with The Song of Achilles and Circe. They don't so often say words like "beseech" and "verily", but Madeline Miller does refrain from using contractions most of the time.
  • The Sot-Weed Factor, by John Barth, is written entirely in the language of Queen Anne's era.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Deadwood was notable for its distinctive archaic language (as well as its more frequently remarked achievements in vocabulary). Characters frequently spoke in lengthy, precisely structured, and apparently extemporaneous complex compound sentences, with never a word out of place nor a clause left fuckin' dangling.
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power makes use of this trope a lot only with Elves and the Numenorians, to give them the feeling of being more ancient and wise than the other Races.
    • One example would the speech Elrond wrote for king Gil-galad: "These most valiant of warriors kneel before us, victorious. For though Morgoth fell an Age ago, some feared a new evil might arise from his shadow. So for centuries now, these soldiers have swept across crag and crevice, washing away the last remnants of our enemy like a spring rain over the bones of spoilt carcass. And now, at last, they return to us in triumph, they have proven beyond any doubt that our days of war are over. Today, out peace of day begin. And, as a measure of our gratitude, these heroes shall be granted an honor unrivaled in all our lore. They will be escorted to the Grey Heavens, and granted passage across the see to dwell for all eternity in the Blessed Realm, the Far West. The Undying Lands of Valinor. At last, they are going home. "
    • Galadriel speaks in this manner sometimes: "You people have no king, for you are him".
    • Halbrand also uses antiquated semantics to express himself: "I am not the hero you seek. For it was my family that lost the war".
  • Motherland: Fort Salem: High Atlantic folks like Abigail and Libba tend to use some really old-fashioned slang, like when Abigail calls Libba a "noodle-headed nay-nay horse".
  • Almost entirely averted in Murdoch Mysteries, where characters use antiquated words only when modern ones weren't in common use at the time.
  • Mike Nelson, of Mystery Science Theater 3000, published several essays in which he often affects a highly formal syntax for comic effect. Mike Nelson's Movie MegaCheese applies the style to reviews of films and shows like Action Jackson and Baywatch.
  • The French TV series Nicolas Le Floch, chronicling the life of a policeman in the court of Louis XV, uses an antiquated style.
  • The Order: Gabrielle once insults Hamish and Randall by calling them yaldsons. Randall is baffled by this, and Hamish has to explain that it's an old term meaning Son of a Whore.
  • When Q makes his first appearance on Star Trek: The Next Generation, he doesn't seem to realise he's a few centuries out when adopting A Form You Are Comfortable With.
    Q: (appearing in guise of an Elizabethan sea captain) I present myself to thee as a fellow ship captain, that thou mayst better understand me.
  • Spartacus: Blood and Sand: The characters in the show speak a form of latinized English, which manifests in different ways:
    • Everyone drops articles (such as "a," "my," and "this") from their speech whenever meaning is clear, because Latin didn't have indefinite or definite articles, and personal articles were considered inelegant.
    • In classical Latin, people don't feel anything, but the feeling manifests itself. This appeared in the show through phrases like "Gratitude" (instead of "Thank You") or "Apologies" (instead of "I apologize").

  • The comedy band Tripod had the Songs from Self Saucing sleeve notes written in this style. For example, the track listing is headed "A Complete Listing of the Songs from Self-Saucing: For the benefit of those prevaricating upon the purchase of this Audio product."

    Print Media 
  • The free Australian paper BMA Magazine is enlivened by the column "Egads!", in which one Gideon Foxworthy-Smythe (who purports to be a temporally displaced Edwardian gentleman) lambastes the Youth of Today for their lack of manners and ludicrously low-hanging trousers.
  • The Chap is rife with hyphens, antiquated verbiage, and similar linguistic japes.
  • McSweeney's Quarterly Concern makes a point of using Victorianesque titles and appellations.
  • Motor Sport magazine, though not a place one would expect to find antiquated anything, still calls its monthly news summary "Matters of Moment."
  • The New Yorker indulges in diacritical marks in a rather antiquated fashion.
  • The Onion has an invented backstory in which it was founded as The Mercantile-Onion by T. Herman Zweibel, whose own written pieces for the newspaper are very much in this style, with words like "fisticuffsmanship" employed.
    • The Onion-based book Our Dumb Century, used this style for many of its mocked-up historical newspaper pages.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Kizarny (Sinn Bodhi) spoke carny, the language used by carnival workers to disguise what they are saying from the marks and which is the source of much of professional wrestling slang and terminology. However, people thought he was imitating Snoop Dogg. (See Snoop's YMMV page for more.)

  • In Ed Reardon's Week, one of Ed's (several) problems is that he's so ensconced in antiquated linguistics that he can't ape the speech patterns of his peers.

  • Gilbert and Sullivan qualify for this trope by writing dialogue that was quaint and antiquated even by the standards of Victorian England (hence its humorous quality). "I wouldn't say a word that would be reckoned as injurious/But to find a mother younger than her son is very curious/And that's the kind of mother that is usually spurious/Tarradiddle Tarradiddle Tol-lol-lay!" In Utopia, Limited, we have these lines:
    Scaphio: A pound of dynamite
    Phantis: -amite
    Scaphio: Explodes in his auriculars.
  • In keeping with the Anachronism Stew that informs so much of the show, the characters in Hamilton go back and forth between 18th century and 21st century styles of speaking (or more accurately, singing).

    Tabletop Games 
  • James Wallis's The Extraordinary Adventures of Baron Munchausen is written in the vernacular of a true British gentleman of the Baron's era, and admonishes the players to do the same.
  • Spirit of the Century employs this trope throughout, and encourages its use among players.

    Video Games 
  • In keeping with the real life author in the Literature folder above, Kōyō Ozaki from Bungo to Alchemist uses a slightly archaic manner of speech to reflect the fact he's from the Edo-born generation, one of the earliest born authors from the late-modern period, and the antiquity of his prose.
  • In The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Tsun, the old Nordic god of "trials over adversity" and shield-thane of Shor speaks this way when met in Sovngarde. Like most inhabitants of this realm, he's intentionally written to speak in an archaic-sounding style meant to be reminiscent of how characters speak in the Icelandic Sagas. For example, if the Dragonborn claims to be a Nightingale or the Listener:
    "Welcome I do not offer, but your errand I will not hinder, if my wrath you can withstand."
  • Fallout uses this style for the Mr. Handy automata, to invoke the image of a British butler from old-time films.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Cyan Garamonde of Final Fantasy VI speaks in an archaic form of Japanese because he's a traditional samurai from the foreign land of Doma, leading Wild Child Gau to refer to him as "Mister Thou." (The first translation used Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe, but the second cleaned it up into something more accurate.)
    • In Final Fantasy XII, everyone except Vaan and Penelo indulges in this at least a little. (It seems to be a class marker; minor NPCs from humble backgrounds tend to speak in a more modern and informal way as well.)
    • Urianger in Final Fantasy XIV uses this almost exclusively to the point that when he drops it, things have gotten very bad. The game in general uses it, though to a lesser degree, with words like "mayhap" being used frequently.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • Bastian of Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and its sequel does a fair impression of a character out of Shakespeare... and nobody else does. Lucia notes that he'd never have been able to disguise himself as a merchant, so his cover was as a street performer instead.
    • Fire Emblem: Three Houses:
      • Ferdinand von Aegir, a nobleman quite fixated with his status, avoids contractions and often uses uncommon words.
      • In spite of her youthful appearance, Flayn has a very antiquated manner of speech in contrast to her peers. Like Ferdinand, she avoids contractions, but also speaks in a direct manner befitting someone much older than her. This is because she actually is older than her peers by approximately a millennium.
      • The game, in general, uses somewhat old fashioned turns of phrases to match the psuedo-Medieval setting that is Fodlan.
  • Galaxy Angel II: Princess Natsume Izayoi speaks in archaic Japanese, including using the first person pronoun warawa, and ending a lot of her sentences with -ja/jaro instead of -da/daro.
  • Discussed in Guild Wars 2: "Sirrah, I can't find anyone to tell me the story of the old ruins." "Sirrah? Nobody talks like that anymore." "I do." "And that's why no-one is talking to you."
  • Even though Onmyōji (2016) is set in the Heian period, it uses this trope to characterize Yōko as Wicked Cultured: he uses archaic and formal language, like fumizuki, the classical word for July, rather than normal shichigatsu (in contrast with Yuki-onna who uses the normal word for September, kugatsu). He is also notorious for using the stilted and archaic first-person pronoun shōsei.
  • In Robopon, Cody has a touch of this.
    Cody: Should I put an end to Bisco's goon's treachery?
  • The Icarus in Sacrifice speaks in the language of a WWI British Ace Pilot.
  • Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun gives you the option to have all of the dialogue in period-appropriate Japanese.
  • Yoshimitsu in the Soul Series speaks in classical Japanese, in combination with Kabuki-style theatrics. This carries over into the English dub, where he speaks with a Shakespearean gravitas.
    ''"Though shalt be slain. My apologies!"

    Visual Novels 
  • In Akatsuki no Goei's route for Kyouka, Kaito gets mad at her for always talking like a cliche rich girl. Nobody has really talked like that for decades and this story takes place about fifty years in the future, making her even more archaic. When he makes her try to speak normally, at first it's slow and halting and filled with errors until eventually she admits that it's just an affectation and she can speak normally, but her parents expect her to talk like that and asks him to just leave her alone about it.
  • King Gilgamesh in Fate/stay night speaks only in an old and respectable Japanese dialect.
  • Beatrice, the millennium-old witch in Umineko: When They Cry, uses archaic language.

    Web Animation 

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • 4chan, of all places, occasionally finds its users indulging in this style. The meme is typically called "verbose" or "gentleman."
  • The Celebrated Magazine uses this style.
  • Recurring ContraPoints character Lady Foppington, an 18th-century European aristocrat, talks exclusively this way, no matter if she's talking about centuries-old pseudoscience or 21st-century memes.
  • Eat Your Kimchi did an episode in Silent-Era style, particularly notable for a postlude featuring an encore rendition of "Shots" by LMFAO using archaic vocabulary.
  • Frilly Shirt displays the trope in abundance, in keeping with its humorous conceit of being the journal of a bohemian Belle Époque baronet.
  • GameChap, owner of a YouTube channel devoted to Minecraft, uses this style.
  • Memes featuring Joseph Ducreux's self-portrait take this trope into the realm of Memetic Mutation.
  • The title character of Salad Fingers speaks in this style.
  • The Ultra Fast Pony episode "Rainbow V Daring" has Rainbow Dash dip into this when she meets Daring Do.
    Rainbow Dash: You foul villain hath stolen from mine identity, and I seek, nay, demand retribution!
    Daring Do: No, your face is a stupid!
    Rainbow Dash: Aw crap, she's smarter than I am!
  • Uncyclopedia's article on Charles Dickens is written in a Dickens-spoofing style, recalling those rumors that Dickens went into such ornate detail because he was paid by the word.

    Western Animation 
  • Season 4 of BoJack Horseman has the Executor of Estate for Herb Kazzaz, a sloth who speaks this way but has zero legal expertise.
    Executor: Still, Herb thought me wise for some reason. Perhaps it is my overly formal manner of speech. I bid you good day.
  • The Fairly OddParents! did this in an early Oh Yeah! Cartoons short, when Timmy dips into these to fool his parents into thinking he's enjoying a quiet night without a babysitter.
  • Family Guy:
    • Stewart is wont to indulge in this.
    • Brian uses some antiquated terms in the episode where he proposes to an older woman.
  • Futurama
    • Hedonism Bot speaks almost exclusively in this way: "Oh sirrah! A man writing an opera about a woman!? How deliciously absurd!"
    • As does Bender when he decides to switch his voice to "King" mode.
    • Also occasionally touched upon is how the cast considers Fry's speech patterns to be amusingly quaint.
  • Princess Luna in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. Being trapped in the moon for a thousand years can do that to you.
  • The Simpsons provides several examples:
    • Mr. Burns, all the time.
      Mr Burns: You there! Fill her up with petroleum distillate. And revulcanise my tyres, posthaste!
    • The Simpsons themselves speak like this in "Helter Shelter", when participating in a documentary recreating life in 1895.
    • In another episode, there's the "Rosetta Crone," which translates antiquated to modern English and vice versa.
    • Martin Prince.
      "Come on, fellows! To the arcade!"
  • Kenny, briefly, in South Park
    Stan: "On the 'morrow?" The fuck is wrong with Kenny?
  • Dr. Byron Orpheus in The Venture Bros.
    Dr. Orpheus: Hear me out! [clears throat] When young women reach estrus, the, uhh, lignum, ummm, craves theeee stamen-like skills of the yoni. This is quite natural.
    Triana: Dad. Come on. I'm doing you a favor.
    Dr. Orpheus: It's just that boys at their age have unchecked desires coursing, nay RAGING AS A TEMPEST WOULD!! Through their tingling nethers!

    Real Life 
  • In his autobiography God's Smuggler, Brother Andrew (1928 - ) explains that he first learned English by using a Dutch-English Dictionary and the King James Bible. He recounts that he once translated "Pass the butter" as "Thus sayeth the neighbor of Andrew, that thou wouldst be pleased to pass the butter?"
  • Old-fashioned language is common among English speakers in southern Africa (South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Malawi). This is of course a consequence of many years of British rule in that part of the world, particularly the use of the British educational system, largely staffed by particularly fusty teachers whose linguistic proscriptions were largely seen as out-of-date back in Britain. As these teachers' lessons were the main sources of English in southern Africa, Southern African English absorbed these patterns as normal rather than hopelessly archaic. British English in general can also sometimes come across this way to Americans, with constructions like "whilst" and "fortnight."
    • Alexander McCall Smith evokes the tendency in The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency and its sequels.
    • Also true in India and neighboring countries, to the point that many there pride themselves on speaking "proper" English, having preserved the accent and syntax approved before the dismantling of The British Empire.
    • For decades it was theorized that Appalachian English was a modern holdover, or at least descendent, of Elizabethan or Shakespearean English. While that theory has since been roundly disproven — a far more suitable candidate would be the dialect still spoken on Tangier Island, Virginia — it is certainly true that even modern mountain folk still regularly use archaicisms in everyday speech, such as britches for pants, poke for a bag, afeared for "afraid" and might could for "maybe."
  • A sort of French equivalent: Guernsey French, a.k.a. Guernesiais, spoken on the Island of Guernsey (a few miles off Normandy, but technically under the British crown, though with independent government). It's said to be a version of the northern dialect of French people marooned there after the last British territory on the European mainland fell to France in the fifteenth century. It's also spoken with a heavy English Accent (most Channel Islanders these days speak English anyway), and so practically incomprehensible to modern French speakers.
    • Also, Québec French sounds closer to seventeenth-century French than modern Metropolitan (Parisian) French, and thus, people from Québec sound rather "hick" to people from Paris. They also have the odd practice that swear words come from Catholic religious objects like tabarnak (from Standard French tabernacle, which means exactly the same as English "tabernacle") and calisse (from Standard French calice, "chalice"), rather than the sexual and scatological cussing more common in European French.
    • This is also true to some degree of Cajun French, the Cajuns being the descendants of Acadians expelled from Canada in the 1760s. Similar to the Québécois example, Cajun French, that also absorbed elements from antiquated Standard Parisian French before the Louisiana Purchase, sounds extremely bumpkin and backwater to speakers of standard French.
  • The Dutch equivalent: to the Dutch, Afrikaans, and to a lesser degree even Flemish, sounds like an antiquated and simplified version of Dutch. This gives Afrikaans the reputation of being "baby talk" among Dutch-speakers, a characterization to which Afrikaans-speakers justifiably take offense.
  • Masonic rituals are heavy with archaic usages that often confuse non-members (and even some members!). Actually understanding what's being said is a more effective password than the actual passwords.
  • Due to its isolation, the Korean used in North Korea is basically the Korean equivalent of this. North Korean standard language is standard Korean used before the end of WWII with accents and grammatical elements from the native Pyongyang dialect. The language as it is used in the South has changed dramatically thanks to foreign loanwords (mainly English and Japanese) and the Internet. Meanwhile, the language as it is used in the North has been practically locked away in a time capsule and the North Korean government prohibits the use of foreign loanwords (meaning local equivalents have to be created) and if foreign words are to be used, they are often Russian-colored in terms of syllable clusters and vowel selections. This, in combination with (from the South Korean perspective) archaic spelling and a nigh-incomprehensible accent, means that North Koreans and South Koreans have difficulty understanding each other, to the point where South Korean TV channels have to subtitle North Koreans when they're shown speaking and even a a literal translator app has been created.
    • North Korean Korean's archaic nature sometimes even bleeds into foreign translations, such as when Kim Jong-un was famously reported to have called then-POTUS Donald Trump a "dotard", an insult calling someone a senile old man that had long fallen out of popular use.
    • The remaining Korean dialects used in Central Asianote  are known to have features of 19th century Korean.
  • This Objectivity video gives a good example of how common this kind of flowery language was in the 19th century. George Everest wrote a letter to his acquaintance John Herschel in 1844. The letter starts with:
    "My dear sir, I went to the York Association, buoyed up chiefly by the hope that I might have the pleasure of meeting you there, and to my infinite disappointment found my journey insofar undertaken in vain. I greatly hoped to express to you my regret that there should ever have been the semblance of a cause for disagreement between us."
  • This trope has been raised in the discussion of the possible homosexuality of historical figures. Their writings to others of the same sex present to people today as indicative of a romance. It may or may not be a correct interpretation and it becomes less and less justified the nearer to present-day we get. See for instance the correspondence between Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok from the mid-20th Century.
  • Standard dialects may be perceived this way by speakers of a dialect associated with lower social classes and lower-class people who do use it may be perceived as Category Traitors by those who choose to speak the less prestigious dialect.
  • Second-language speakers tend to sound this way to natives due to second-language learners being taught more formal varieties of the language in language classes, as well as a lot of immigrants coming from cultures that value politeness. This is probably for the better, given that incorrect use of foreign slang can lead to international incidents.