[LMB] OT: Language changes

Marc Wilson marc.wilson at gmx.co.uk
Tue Sep 21 20:48:03 BST 2021


On Thu, 16 Sep 2021 11:47:14 -0600, Margaret Dean <margdean56 at gmail.com>
wrote:

>On Thu, Sep 16, 2021 at 1:10 AM Matija Grabnar via Lois-Bujold <
>lois-bujold at lists.herald.co.uk> wrote:
>
>>
>> >> On Sep 15, 2021, at 7:26 PM, B Van Look <vanlook19 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> >>
>> >> One of the changes I find fascinating was the mutation of "nice"
>> >> "Nice" went from "ignorant/daft" to "decadent/luxurious (especially in
>> >> clothing or food)" to "delicate/particular"
>>
>> >> Yes.   “Girl” didn’t use to be gendered.
>>
>> Hah! I remember a friend of mine wrote (for his master's thesis) a
>> program in Prolog that could determine, for any word in Slovenian, which
>> gender it was. 30 minutes before he was supposed to defend his thesis,
>> someone told him to test it with "Dekle" (girl in Slovenian). It came
>> out neutral. Cue the guy going into a full scale panic, trying to find
>> the bug in his code before realizing that yes, it is neutral (In
>> official Slovenian. There is at least one dialect where it is female,
>> but you wouldn't use that in anything resembling official communication
>> or professional environment). Compared to that, his thesis defense
>> passed uneventfully.
>>
>> In German it is also "Das Mädchen" as in neutral sex, not "Die Mädchen"
>> which would indicate female.
>>
>
>Just goes to show how little *grammatical* gender actually has to do with
>*biological* gender/sex.

In Dutch, the grammatical "genders" are not sexual; it's either "common"
or "neuter".

In French, "vagin" is masculine.
--
Software and cathedrals are much the same –
first we build them, then we pray. - Sam Redwine



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