How many demonstrative pronouns are there really?

Are there only four demonstrative pronouns this, that, these, and those in English, or are there more like thik which is a variation of this and that? Answer “Hither, page, and stand by me         If thou know’st it, telling Yonder peasant, who is he?         Where and what his dwelling?” “Sire, he lives a good league … Read more

Status of ‘hypophora’ as a word

I participate in other SE forums where it’s common practice for experienced or knowledgeable participants to simultaneously submit both a question and an answer. This can be very helpful in technical forums frequented by inexperienced users who tend to ask the same questions, but word their questions very differently. This practice is encouraged for all … Read more

‘Whosever’: Why is this word going out of usage?

Whosever foot fits into the slipper, that woman will be my wife. Though English is not my native language, due to years of reading, ‘whosever’ as a possessive came naturally to me in the above example. Online search shows that the word is very rare and many dictionaries are getting rid of it (Oxford and … Read more

Has the word “manal” (instead of “manual”) ever actually been used? If so, how?

Recently, I’ve been going through checking how many Latin words ending in -alis have corresponding English words ending in -al. It seems there was a Latin word mānālis meaning “flowing” (as well as a separate word meaning “of or belonging to the Manes”). So I looked up “manal” in OneLook Dictionary Search and found that … Read more

“whoever” vs “whosoever” – when should I use which?

What’s the rule for choosing between “whoever” and “whosoever” as a subject for a sentence? Even if they have the same semantics (of which I’m not sure), I’m assuming there some contextual or stylistic considerations for choosing one over the other. Answer Whosoever is, according to ODO, formal term for whoever. So you should/could use … Read more

Is there an English verb that comes from the Greek ἀσθενέω (astheneó: to be weak or feeble)?

From Wiktionary: 3. (with infinitive) to be too weak to do a thing, to be unable Sample using this definition: This friction <astheneo-s> to resist the force. An answer in the negative counts. Answer After various types of searches, I found that the French verb asthénier appears to be ultimately derived from the noun ἀσθένεια, … Read more

Term for when someone falsely accuses you of doing to them what they are actually doing to you

UPDATE: (2018-02-08) Pot-Calling-The-Kettle-Black (PCKB) reconsideration and another example: The Wikipedia article on PCKB indicates something interesting. It says that originally, the term was Spanish (c. 17th Century) and most often used to indicate hypocrisy, because in those days, BOTH the pot and the kettle were made of a black cast iron, which I why I … Read more

term for a word that describes itself

The Wiktionary definition of sesquipedalianism, usage (2), is given as follows: (countable) A very long word. And wouldn’t you know it, sesquipedalianism is a very long word! Sesquipedalianism is a sesquipedalianism. This observations brings me to the peculiar but fascinating question of whether a word that literally describes itself has been identified by some general … Read more

What is an archaic, rare noun or word for an archetypal, vengeant, past tensive male character who is of the past that many aspire to be like?

What I mean is “someone of old” that people could be drawn to. One who is stuck in the past and in his ways and dislikes the future. Something like: • an originator • an innovator • a predecessor • an uncaused, time-traveler. Edit: This character also could have nefarious, mysterious, dismissive or even obsolete … Read more