black_marya: (Default)
Как можно не любить английский, хотя бы потому, что в нем такие ) собирательные существительные!

Навеяно этим постом в kidpix


Sep. 12th, 2012 06:53 pm
black_marya: (Default)
According to An A to Z of Food & Drink (2002) by John Ayto, “The origins of the crumpet are mysterious. As early as 1382, Johy Wycliffe, in his translation of the Bible, mentioned crompid cake, whose name may be the precursor of the modern term, but the actual ‘cake’ itself does not bear much resemblance to the present-day crumpet. It seems to have been a thin cake cooked on a hot griddle, so that the edges curled up (crompid goes back to Old English crump, crumb, ‘crooked’, and is related to the modern English crumple). The inspiration behind its naming thus seems to be very familiar to that of crepe, which literally means ‘curled’. Earliest recipes for crumpets, from the late seventeenth century, continue this theme, standardly using buckwheat flour, and it is not until nearly a hundred years later that crumpets as we know then today beging to emerge…During the 19th century the crumpet–toasted before the fire, its honeycomb of cavities filled with melting butter–established itself as an indispensible part of the English teatime scene.”

Alan Davidson (Oxford Companion to Food, 1999) adds, “The earliest published recipe for crumpets of the kind known now is from Elizabeth Raffald (1769).” 

To make tea crumpets Beat two eggs very well, put them to a quart of warm milk and water, and a large spoonful of barm: beat in as much fine flour as will make them rather thicker than a common batter pudding, then make your bakestone very hot, and rub it with a little butter wrapped in a clean linen cloth, then pour a large spoonful of batter upon your stone, and let it run to the size of a tea-saucer; turn it, and when you want to use them roast them very crisp, and butter them.
—The Experienced English Housekeeper, Elizabeth Raffald, 1769



Jun. 22nd, 2012 03:04 pm
black_marya: (читаю)
Bashful is one of those wonderful words without an opposite. Try as you might, nobody will ever call you bashless. Which poses the question: what the devil is bash and how did you get so full of it?

To answer that question one can turn to the Old Curiosity Shop where Dickens mentions that Dick Swiveller "spends all his money on his friends and is Bah!'d for his pains."

By this Dickens means that Swiveller's friends say Bah to him, Bah being an exclamation of contempt. Dickens looks terribly original, but in fact bah has (probably - this is all merely the best theory) been verbed before, by the French and Normans a thousand years ago.

First, you should note that bah comes straight from the French. But the Normans had a verb ebahir, which meant to be astonished, or more literally to be reduced to saying 'bah' in amazement. This got altered to abaïr, and that got altered to abaissir and that got altered to abash.

These days it's easy to be abashed in the passive; but once upon a time it was just as common to go around abashing people until they were abashed, or just bashed, at which point they became bashful.

Thus, by a preposterously serpentine route, Dick Swiveller is abashed.

None of which has anything to do with a bash on the head, which appears to come from the Old Norse who had a deplorable habit of doing a lot of such bashing.
black_marya: (Default)
As you step out in the cold misery of a British May, you don your hat. Then you see a lady of your acquaintance and you doff your hat. Then you don it again. Doff. Don. Doff. Don. And suddenly you realise, in a moment of etymological ecstasy, that the verb don is merely a contraction of do on, and that doff is merely a contraction of do off. And you're so excited that you kiss that poor lady and run off howling and hatless.
black_marya: (читаю)
Роман Джейми О'Нила, как хорошее вино, я долго выдерживала на полке. Этот густой язык сложен для восприятия: дублинский слэнг, внутренний монолог героев, склонность автора скорее к аллюзиям на реалии, чем прямому описанию.

But it’s odd the way these things go: it’s not the reader you need to convince, but yourself. When I was sure I was comfortable with some aspect – street furniture for instance – I was happy to write nothing about it. After all, who walks along a street noticing the postbox? The danger of too much period detail is that your characters drown in it: the universality of emotions is lost, and your book becomes merely an historical fiction. But I needed to be sure I knew enough, in order to leave most of it out.

И все же буквально с первого же абзаца терпким послевкусием остается почти стихотворный ритм прозы:

Grey morning dulled the bay. Banks of clouds, Howth just one more bank, rolled to sea, where other Howths grumbled to greet them. Swollen spumeless tide. Heads that bobbed like floating gulls and gulls that floating bobbed like heads. Two heads. At swim, two boys...

- чувство влюбленности в родные места, а речь героев удивительно ярко вычерчивает характеры.
For me, the sounds of words, their rhythm in a phrase, can advance a plot, reveal a character, as readily as the dullest meaning.
Думаю, если перечитать, будет только вкуснее.

Роман, конечно, исторический, уже потому что он посвящен Ирландии 1915-1916 годов, периода, полного подспудной жизнью. И все же он не исторический - в нем практически нет исторической перспективы, зато равновесно с большими событиями, очень жизненно, нас занимают, на первый взгляд, незначительные, частные происшествия, разговоры, обещания, мечты. Море. Острова. Знаки.

И в общем-то близкая мне идея того, что любовь к отчизне, и в том числе стремление отстоять ее самостояние с оружием в руках, вырастает из таких частностей, как улыбка любимого человека, или воскресное утро, проведенное за плаванием. Пожалуй, только, слишком уж явно прописанная в концовке романа.

(The whole notion is that two boys, in their friendship and their love, would discover their own country - a country, in the end, that would be worthy of their fighting for it).

И, конечно же, его нужно бы перечитать, и перечитать со словарем, что я, конечно, заленюсь сделать - читать роман нужно так же, как он писался и задумывался:

Ten years I worked at that hospital, the ten years it took to write At Swim. Like a good lover, that novel provoked me, angered me, it left me despairing at times – but it never bored me, the writing of it. I loved the research, learning new words, new facts, learning how to research even (seven years before I hit upon a newspaper library!) Much of writing, of course, is avoiding the page, and research can become the surest form of pencil-sharpening.
Then again, I have a love for words.  I remember my delight in finding the word ‘tarse’ – the OED defines it as ‘penis’ and records its last outing in the 1700s. A fool loses his readers in arcane words, but the formulation ‘by arse or by tarse’ was too good to let pass.
black_marya: (читаю)
Cottoning on to something, in the sense of understanding it is a rather odd phrase. Indeed, it's so odd that it doesn't exist in America, so far as I can tell. On those strange shores cottoning on means getting on well with, which is in fact exactly what the phrase meant on these strange shores a hundred and fifty years ago.

In John Camden Hotten's A Dictionary of Slang, Cant and Vulgar Words Used at the Present Day in the Streets of London (1860), you'll find this entry; and it's pretty easy to see how you can go from liking something to understanding it.

COTTON, to like, adhere to, or agree with any person; "to COTTON on to a man," to attach yourself to him, or fancy him, literally, to stick to him as cotton would. Vide Bartlett, who claims it as an Amercanism; and Halliwell, who terms it an Archaism; also Bacchus and Venus 1737.

Well, Halliwell was right. The phrase is, to all intents and porpoises, pre-American and has been around since the mid sixteenth century. So far as anybody can tell it comes from the practise of lining clothes with cotton. So something that is made of a coarse, thick, warm material on the outside can have a cotton interior to make it comfortable. A dictionary of 1706 has this:

In making Hats, To Cotton well, is when the Wool and other Materials work well and imbody together.

Obviously, the inner and outer layer have to fit perfectly together and thus cotton well, and thus two people who fit together perfectly are said to have cottoned.

Or there's the possibility that it comes from the Welsh cytuno, meaning agree. I'd try to combine the two explanations, but they just won't cotton.
black_marya: (ужас)
dosser - английский или ирландский бомж
thoolamawn - бестолковый идиот
bucko - парень
on the cadge - на халяву
high-jinker - весельчак, гоготун
mag - полпенни
old sweat - ветеран
squeeze me peas=excuse me, please
segotia - закадычный друг (дублинский слэнг)
paddywhack - ирландец
И ведь что-то позабыла... и по контексту не очевидно.
black_marya: (читаю)
Оказывается, значение этого слова за века своего бытования сильно смягчилось. В староанглийском qualm означало смерть, мор, чуму, и пыточная называлась qualm-house, а место казни - qualm-stow. Затем, в 16 веке, слово qualm употреблялось для описания невзгод, например, затяжной болезни, после - недомогания, слабости и прочих неудобств.
(Ну а сейчас оно употребляется исключительно как qualms of concience, угрызения совести).
black_marya: (читаю)
Let us wend our irregular way to an odd leftover of grammar. The English verb go declines as: go, goes, went, gone. Or at least that's what you're taught in school; but it's a goddam lie.

The verb go looks terribly irregular. What's that W word doing between the Gs of go and gone? The etymological truth, though, is that went is a completely different verb.

Once upon a thousand years ago there was the present tense go and the past tense gaed*. Then there was another, separate, verb: wend. We still use wend in the phrase to wend your way.

Just as the past tense of send is sent, so the past participle of wend became went. So in the past tense you went your way.

And then something very odd happened. People stopped using gaed as the past tense of go and pretty much stopped using the present tense of wend. This left modern English with go and went, which became so universally used for motion that they appear to be one irregular verb, which effectively, they now are.

*But mainly in the North. There was another past tense - eode - in Old English, but that too appears to be a separate derivation.

black_marya: (читаю)

Хитрыми путями нашла статью по истории США (ой, простите, Banded Folkdoms of Americksland), написанную с использованием слов только англо-саксонского происхождения.
black_marya: (Clive Barker)
Dearest creature in creation,
Study English pronunciation.
I will teach you in my verse
Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse.
I will keep you, Suzy, busy,
Make your head with heat grow dizzy.
Tear in eye, your dress will tear.
So shall I! Oh hear my prayer.
Кажется, это даже более длинная версия этого зубодробительного стиха, чем мне попадалась ранее... )


Oct. 26th, 2011 01:46 pm
black_marya: (Default)

Оказывается, выражение wotcher это вовсе не искаженное watch yer, а what cheer, староанглийское "как дела", "как настроение".


Пойду дальше искать то выражение, которое хотела найти изначально...
black_marya: (Default)
Ну надо же, ни за что не догадаться, нет, ну какая этимология!

As the phrase means pregnant it shouldn't come as a major surprise that for the origin we need look no further than the penis. As with many English phrases that refer to sexual activity we dive straight into a world of euphemism and there are several obscuring layers here between penis and pregnancy.

One of the numerous slang terms for the sexual organs, or more commonly specifically the penis, is pudding. This has a long history, going back to at least the 18th century, as here from Thomas D'Urfey's, Wit and mirth: or pills to purge melancholy, being a collection of ballads and songs, 1719: "I made a request to prepare again, That I might continue in Love with the strain Of his Pudding".
A slang term for male masturbation, which leaves little to the imagination - 'pull one's pudding', has been known since at least the 19th century.

There is a related phrase for pregnancy - 'in the pudding club', and it turns out that this and 'up the duff' are essentially the same phrase. By 1890, Barrère & Leland, in their Dictionary of Slang, defined the term pudding club: "A woman in the family way is said to be in the pudding club."
Note that in those Victorian times the definition of a euphemistic term for pregnancy relied on another euphemism.

Dough is another word for pudding and duff is an alternative form and pronunciation of dough. That was in use by 1840, as here from R. H. Dana in Before the Mast: "To enhance the value of the Sabbath to the crew, they are allowed on that day a pudding, or, as it is called, a ‘duff’."

So, we travel this route - (up the) duff -> dough -> pudding -> penis -> pregnant.
black_marya: (Default)
То-то мне словечко 'limb', до сих пор иногда встречающееся, всегда казалось безвкусицей. Оказывается, оно некогда было признаком "хорошего тона".

Mrs Beeton could not bring herself to write the word 'trousers' and so when she writes about how a valet should dress his master she omits the word, and the item, altogether. The dread word was replaced by the 'unmentionables' or 'the indescribables', 'the inexplicables' or the 'inexpressibles'. 'Leg' got away with being 'limb'. But Mrs Beeton's chap's lower limbs were trouserless.


Mar. 11th, 2011 08:52 pm
black_marya: (Default)
Gamblers put many fine phrases into the word-kitty. 'Deal' itself became the power behind phrases such as 'new deal', 'square deal', 'fair deal', 'raw deal', 'big deal'; 'you bet!', 'put up or shut up!', 'I'll call your bluff' were first heard around the American card table, perhaps on a river boat gliding down to New Orleans. Thanks to these dedicated gambling men you can today have 'an ace up your sleeve' so you put 'up the ante' and when someone 'throws in his hand' you keep a 'poker face'. Even when the 'chips are down' and the 'cards are stacked against you' you can play a 'wild card' and 'scoop the jackpot'.

Хотела сделать паузу, но в сообществе en_ru_idioma меня заставили перевести и откомментировать, так что не утащить к себе свой же пост было невозможно. Дальше мой перевод и есть )
black_marya: (читаю)
Английский распространялся по Америке, связи его с языком, на котором говорили в Англии, пообтрепались и порвались. В ряде случаев изменилось значение слов. Магазин вместо английского 'shop' сделался 'store'. 'Lumber' в Лондоне обозначал "рухлядь", а на восточном побережье - "строевой лес". Английское печенье из 'biscuit' стало 'cracker'. В Америке 'pond' уж не меньше английского 'lake' (то есть не пруд, а целое озеро), а американский 'rock' не больше английского 'pebble' (уже не скала, а камушек, галька). В Америке земельный надел стал называться словом 'lot', так как именно жребием определялся новый владелец земельного участка.
Звучание языка также менялось. Смешение диалектов, начавшееся еще на пути в Новый Свет, привело к тому, что ни один из акцентов не получил преобладания. ... В любых двух английских графствах говорили на диалектах, различавшихся куда больше, чем английский в двух разных американских штатах. ... Американцы были убеждены, что они не просто говорят по-английски правильно, а даже лучше, чем в самой Англии.
В пылу борьбы за независимость некоторые американцы якобы полагали, что Америка должна разорвать и последние связи с Англией - сделать своим языком французский, иврит или даже, возможно, греческий. Это, скорее всего, миф. ... но они попытались сделать свой английский язык лучшим в мире.
Вебстер хотел научить Америку правильно писать. Отсутствие орфографических ошибок стало стандартом качества образования на всей территории Америки, и именно тогда появились столь популярные американские 'spelling bee' (орфографические турниры)...
Вебстер, как и большиство реформаторов, апеллировал к логике. Поэтому словам 'colour' и 'honour' пришлось избавиться от нелогичного 'u', а 'waggon' покатился дальше уже с одной буквой 'g'. Слово 'traveller' потеряло второе 'l', плуг из 'plough' превратился в 'plow', а 'theatre' и 'centre' стали 'theater' и 'center'...
black_marya: (читаю)
It has been suggested that it was English sixteenth-century sailors who brought in 'fokkinge', 'krappe' and 'buggere' (though that is ultimately 'Bulgarus', Latin for Bulgarians), which they had found irresistible in Low Dutch. Even when they are found in earlier English, these words are not swear words. 'Ct' is not taboo; 'bugger' does not mean sodomite until the period we are talking about.
black_marya: (читаю)

Как же много незамечаемой нами истории хранит язык! Читаю удивительно увлекательную книжку Melvyn Bragg's 'The Adventure of English', добралась до нормандского завоевания и, соответственно, пласта французских слов в английском языке: 

Англоязычные крестьяне разводили скот, например, коров, до сих пор называемых староанглийским словом 'ox' или, чаще, 'cow'. Франкоязычные феодалы ели блюда из мяса, которое подавалось к их столу и называлось 'beef'. Точно так же английская 'sheep' (овца) делалась французской 'mutton' (ягнятиной), 'calf' (теленок) становился 'veal' (телятиной),  'deer' (олень) назывался 'venison' (оленятина), 'pig' (свинья) превращалась в 'pork' (свинину) - и так каждый раз: животное английское, а мясо французское.


black_marya: (Default)

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