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professorpopcorn
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Just a small point but something that's been bothering me for weeks.(you're right,I should get out more !!!! Smile )

I wonder whether there's any grammatical genii out there who can help me.

On the radio,I hear them say 'someone has "texted" us',obviously meaning they have received a text message.

Now the word 'texted' doesn't sound right to me.

Does anyone know,is it correct or not ???

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Peter Marucci
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Texted?
There's a reason it doesn't sound right to you, Professor.
It's because there isn't such a word! Smile
Just one more erosion of the language of Milton and Shakespeare! Smile
cheers,
Peter Marucci
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Missing_Link
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...or you could argue that "texted" is a coinage that reflects a modern technological development. A simple part of a language's evolution - it will sound odd and irritate for a while but soon become as accepted as "photocopied", for example.

ML
Huw Collingbourne
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Quote:
On 2002-07-02 23:10, Peter Marucci wrote:
Texted?
There's a reason it doesn't sound right to you, Professor.
It's because there isn't such a word!

Strange as it may seem, the verb 'to text' is not new to the English language. I've just checked in the OED (the 26 volume edition which I always keep ready to hand for just such debates as these!)

I quote:

"Text, v., Now rare.
1. Trans. To inscribe, write or print in a text-hand or in capital or large letters.
b. Trans. To write in a text-hand upon.
2. a. Intrans. To cite texts.
b. To cite a text at or against a person.

The first quoted example is 1599!

Perhaps the first example of someone referring to a text message in the modern sense is this following from Sir E. Hoby's sadly forgotten masterpiece, 'Curry-combe' of 1615:

"When his wench told him he kissed like a Clowter, he could text her with 'Labia sacerdotis custodiunt sapientiam'."

(I presume this could be translated into modern parlance thus:
"When his girlfriend told him he kissed like an oily rag he would send her a Latin epithet by means of a text message on a 17th Century mobile phone...? Smile )

This seems like one of those odd examples of a modern 'slang' usage accidentally resurrecting an archaic usage.

Just like magic, in the English language nothing's ever quite as new as you may think....!

all the best
Huw
Peter Marucci
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Huw writes: "Just like magic, in the English language nothing's ever quite as new as you may think....!"

How true!

Consider the word "gay", for example.
Many today complain that the homosexual community has usurped a perfectly good English word and changed the meaning.
However, about four centuries ago, that is exactly what "gay" meant! It was a theatre term, usually reserved for those men who played women's parts (women were not allowed on stage at the time) and were of a particular sexual leaning.
Hence, the reason we have so many theatres called "Gaiety".
So, perhaps ML is right and "texted" will find its way into the language.
Basically, one can argue that the language will change ONLY if there is a need for the new or changed words.
So, we wait and see! Smile
cheers,
Peter Marucci
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Huw Collingbourne
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Quote:
...about four centuries ago, that is exactly what "gay" meant! It was a theatre term, usually reserved for those men who played women's parts...

The history of slang is one of my great loves - don't get me started; you'll never shut me up!

Gay/theatrical slang (in the UK it's called 'polari' or, sometimes, 'parlare') is a rich source of colourful terms, a few of which, such as 'drag', have crossed over into everyday language.

More obscure polari terms (as in "How fabulosa to varda your bona old eek!" - translation: "Nice to see you" - though the literal translation is: "How fabulous to see your good old face!") are only known to the older generation of theatricals and students of the 1960s BBC Radio Show, 'Round The Horne'.

I don't know if there are examples of magical jargon that have crossed over into everyday lingo in the way that 'gay' and 'drag' have. The only one I can think of off hand is 'gimmick'. According to The Cassell Dictionary of Slang (another reference book which is never more than a shelf away from my desk!), this word comes from the 1920s (I'd assumed it would have been earlier - but anyway, that's what it says) and meant "a contrivance for dishonestly regulating a gambling game or an article used in a conjuring trick'. While magicians still use it to mean that, the word has, of course, gone on to acquire other meanings for the public at large.

I'm sure there must be other crossovers in magical jargon. Anyone think of some examples....?

best wishes
Huw
Jim Morton
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Well, the obvious examples, of "pulling a rabbit out of one's hat," and the phrase "hocus pocus" when used in a similar way as "Mumbo Jumbo" (which, in turn, probably owes its popularity to Vachel Lindsay's poem, The Congo). Then there is "Fast and Loose," which is nowadays more of a magical effect than the con game it was when term was first coined. I'm sure there are others.

Jim
mattneufeld
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I'm a career journalist, and we can officially add "texted" to the long list of ridiculously misused words, phrases, expressions, etc. "Texted" is incorrect--it is not a word. And just to let everyone know: the use of the word "grow" in corporate-speak lately is also incorrect. When some suit says "I want to grow this department," technically, that is incorrect. All they need to do is say, "I would like to increase profits and market-share and visibility of this department." We need to stay focused on correct grammar, as that is an essential foundation of a strong literate society.
Huw Collingbourne
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Quote:
On 2002-07-03 17:39, mattneufeld wrote:
"Texted" is incorrect--it is not a word.

Not sure I agree with that. When vast numbers of people use a word such as "texted", we surely have to admit that it really is a word. It might be a new word, it might be a word that you and I don't like. But it's a word all the same...

(I bet people were equally horrified when the word 'gimmick' entered the language - and here we are today, still using it!)

best wishes
Huw
professorpopcorn
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Thank you to everyone for your replies.

I think I need to explain my confusion over this word 'texted'.

I listen to BBC Radio 5 Live and particularly the Breakfast Show.This excellent show is co-hosted by Julian Worriker and Victoria Derbyshire.Now if you've ever heard this programme you will surely agree with me that these two presenters together are the epitome of grammatical correctness and good taste.(They're a bit posh !!!! Smile )

And that's why,when I heard them use the word 'texted' my jaw went Smile
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Peter Marucci
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Add to the list of crossover words, from magic to general use, the noun "houdini", as in: "He pulled a houdini." (i.e., he escaped amazingly).
With the lower case "h", it was officially accepted by several dictionaries some years ago.
cheers,
Peter Marucci
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Dan Farmer
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I'll add my two cents since everyone in my area calls me Mr. Grammar (Ok they actually call me a grammar nazi Smile ) I'm not going to look this one up because I'm rather busy but I would guess that "texted" is not correct, and here is why: Even if we accept that "To text" is an infinitive form of the verb "texted" is not necessarily the proper conjugation of it.

For example: "To run" is the infinitive but "runned" is not the correct past conjugation, the correct conjugation is "ran."

In the professor's example "someone has 'texted' us," us is a direct object. Argh! I just wrote a HUGE dissertation on this so I will abbreviate it. If the verb were "To give" you would have to say "someone HAS GIVEN us [a message]..." even though GAVE is the past tense. ¿Entiende usted? Smile

-Dan
Peter Marucci
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However, the infinitive of a word, like scan, is "to scan" and the past tense is "scanned".
And why couldn't you say "someone gave us" [a message]?
BTW, what WAS that message? Smile
If you really want to "open a can of worms", we can start on the definitions of words like:
presently, hopefully, momentarily.
cheers,
Peter Marucci
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Dan Farmer
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I know you're just jerking my chain but I'll reply anyway Smile The difference would be the immediateness. If someone "gave us" a message that would refer to the past but if someone "has given [to] us [something]," that would imply a "just now" time frame. It's interesting to look at things like mood and time frames in a linguistic context but since you were just busting my stones anyway I'll drop it Smile

-Dan
BroDavid
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Ok, I have resisted until now. But here goes.

How many times have you heard the word "myself" used in place of "I" or "me"?

Altheltes are among the most prolific in applying this term in phrases such as;
He went with myself!

But many other public figures, particularly in the entertainment industry, seem to be picking this up.

What is your reaction to it? Does anybody think this is right? Does anybody think this is wrong?

BroDavid
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Huw Collingbourne
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Quote:
On 2002-07-06 19:52, BroDavid wrote:
How many times have you heard the word "myself" used in place of "I" or "me"?

I haven't heard that one! Maybe it's an Americanism? If so I'm sure we'll have it here in the UK soon (maybe it's already here but I just haven't heard it).

The thing that irritates me is the confusion between "I" and "me" when used in expressions such as "my husband and I". Many people here in the UK tend to think that "I" is invariably 'more correct' (or possibly posher!) than "me". This leads to over-correction in sentences such as:

"Fred told my husband and I that he would come to dinner on Saturday".

On the whole I am pretty happy to take a permissive approach to grammar (I am of the opinion that grammar is descriptive rather than proscriptive). However, I admit to having the odd shudder when I hear people going out of their way to avoid saying what comes naturally (e.g. "my husband and me") even when it is grammatically 'correct'...

Actually, I am more annoyed by those people who insist on imposing grammatical or stylistic 'rules' which make no sense whatsoever.
:: e.g. - Always using the active voice. Avoid the passive! (But why? This is mere prejudice).

In my experience, style rules such as this are passed down from one generation of subeditors, teachers and grammarians to the next until they acquire a wholly mythical 'correctness'. It's all nonsense of course and we should resist all attempts to impose these arbitrary rules on the beautifully fluid English language...

best wishes
Huw
Peter Marucci
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Writer George Orwell (of Nineteen Eight-Four fame) compiled a list of 10 rules on how to write properly (use the active voice when possible, etc.).
But he considered the 10th rule the most important on the list:
"Feel free to break any of these rules rather than commit a barbarity in print."
Good advice.
(Unfortunately, even it can be abused by some.)
cheers,
Peter Marucci
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Andy Leviss
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All I have to say is that texted is a perfectly cromulent word ;o)
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
professorpopcorn
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Quote:
On 2002-07-08 05:51, Andy Leviss wrote:
All I have to say is that texted is a perfectly cromulent word ;o)


Thanks Andy.That's all I wanted to know !!!!

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Andy Leviss
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Yeah, I actually didn't know at first, but I found it in my studies as I worked to embiggen my vocabulary :o)
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