Due to persistent vandalism, account creation has been suspended. If you would like an account, please contact Charlie Reams on Apterous.

Disputed words

From Countdown

(Difference between revisions)
Jump to: navigation, search
(American spellings: +SULPHUR issue)
m (Allowed on apterous, may not be allowed on Countdown)
 
(11 intermediate revisions not shown)
Line 1: Line 1:
-
Several of [[Countdown]]'s rules regarding which [[ODE]] words are permitted and which are not are applied inconsistently. This page lists words which should be "approached with caution".
+
Several of [[Countdown]]'s rules regarding which [[ODE|ODO]] words are permitted and which are not are applied inconsistently. This page lists words which should be "approached with caution".
==Mass noun plurals==
==Mass noun plurals==
Line 17: Line 17:
#*drink: e.g. rum/rums, lager/lagers
#*drink: e.g. rum/rums, lager/lagers
#*plants: e.g. bergamot
#*plants: e.g. bergamot
-
#*fabric: e.g. gingham/ginghams, silk/silks
 
#*certain languages or subjects: e.g. music/musics
#*certain languages or subjects: e.g. music/musics
#*metals and alloys: e.g. steel/steels, solder/solders
#*metals and alloys: e.g. steel/steels, solder/solders
Line 33: Line 32:
Clearly these rules are quite ambiguous and some words have been allowed and disallowed at different times, e.g.
Clearly these rules are quite ambiguous and some words have been allowed and disallowed at different times, e.g.
-
* {{word|SEDATIONS}}
+
* {{word|LOGICS}}
* {{word|OPALINES}}
* {{word|OPALINES}}
* [[Episode 5627|{{word|PLUMAGES}}]]
* [[Episode 5627|{{word|PLUMAGES}}]]
 +
* {{word|SEDATIONS}}
 +
* {{word|STOWAGES}}
 +
 +
Some words have no obvious basis for pluralisation but have been allowed (implicitly or explicitly) at various points, e.g. [[Episode 4611|{{word|PELAGES}}]].
 +
 +
Even words which are explicitly listed in the introduction are generally not permitted if their entry doesn't support it.
==Adjective inflections==
==Adjective inflections==
Line 45: Line 50:
However this rule is applied somewhat arbitrarily.
However this rule is applied somewhat arbitrarily.
-
===Allowed on [[apterous]], may not be allowed on Countdown===
+
===Allowed on [[Apterous]], may not be allowed on Countdown===
* BRUTER, BRUTEST (Assumed inflections of BRUT).
* BRUTER, BRUTEST (Assumed inflections of BRUT).
* CHIEFER, CHIEFEST
* CHIEFER, CHIEFEST
* FEINTER, FEINTEST
* FEINTER, FEINTEST
* MAINER, MAINEST
* MAINER, MAINEST
 +
 +
Another issue is adjectives labelled "[in combination]". It is generally assumed that these are not allowed.
==Verbs==
==Verbs==
===Passive verbs===
===Passive verbs===
Some verbs appear as headwords but with only the passive form specified, such as "lenite (be lenited)". It is not clear whether the other inflections are to be allowed, and in practice rulings have been inconsistent (e.g. {{word|REPUTING}} in Episodes [[Episode 3938|3938]] and [[Episode 5146|5146]]). These are presently allowed on ''apterous''.
Some verbs appear as headwords but with only the passive form specified, such as "lenite (be lenited)". It is not clear whether the other inflections are to be allowed, and in practice rulings have been inconsistent (e.g. {{word|REPUTING}} in Episodes [[Episode 3938|3938]] and [[Episode 5146|5146]]). These are presently allowed on ''apterous''.
-
* ENAMOUR
+
* {{word|ENAMOUR}}
-
* LENITE
+
* {{word|LENITE}}
-
* REPUTE
+
* {{word|NEAP}}
 +
* {{word|REPUTE}}
==American spellings==
==American spellings==
Line 69: Line 77:
==Partially capitalised words==
==Partially capitalised words==
-
''Countdown'' rules specify that words beginning with capital words will not be permitted, presumably with the intention of disallowing proper nouns and adjectives. However, the dictionary now contains some words with a capital letter in the middle, e.g. ''iPod'' and ''eBay''. Under a strict interpretation of the rules these should be allowed, but it seems likely that they would not be.
+
''Countdown'' rules specify that words beginning with capital letters will not be permitted, presumably with the intention of disallowing proper nouns and adjectives. However, the dictionary now contains some words with a capital letter in the middle, e.g. ''iPod'' and ''eBay''. Under a strict interpretation of the rules these should be allowed, but it seems likely that they would not be.
==Unknown rules==
==Unknown rules==
Line 78: Line 86:
==Other==
==Other==
-
* GERRYMANDERINGS, RERATINGS etc
+
* Plurals of nouns marked "in sing". Some of these seem obviously silly, others are arguable. Examples: {{word|AMBIT}}, {{word|GERRYMANDERINGS}}, {{word|GUSTOS}}, {{word|ILKS}}, {{word|OUTSETS}}, {{word|PURVIEWS}}, {{word|RERATINGS}}, {{word|TITTLES}}, etc.
 +
* "Usually as noun". Some verbs are listed with "usually as noun" and it's not clear if plurals are intended. Examples: {{word|RERATING}}.
 +
* "Written abbreviation". Examples: {{word|ADVT}}, {{word|BF}}, {{word|GF}}.
 +
 
 +
[[Category:Study aids]]

Latest revision as of 18:13, 27 August 2020

Several of Countdown's rules regarding which ODO words are permitted and which are not are applied inconsistently. This page lists words which should be "approached with caution".

Contents

Mass noun plurals

The Countdown rules state:-

These notes outline the general rules that the judges in dictionary corner use when deciding whether a noun can have a plural. Nouns and senses of nouns may be labelled in the dictionary as being either [MASS NOUN] or [COUNT NOUN]. If an entry for a noun has no label, it indicates that the noun is an ordinary countable noun, and a plural is allowed: for example, table-tables, boy-boys, book-books, lass-lasses, and so on. If an entry for a noun has the label [MASS NOUN] it means that the word is not usually or typically used in the plural, for example 'sanidine'. In this case the plural would not be allowed. However, there are particular types of mass nouns that can take a plural under certain circumstances – for instance when referring to different types of something such as food. Because these types of nouns follow regular rules for forming plurals in particular contexts, the dictionary does not generally indicate that a plural may be allowed. The main types are listed below. Where a noun falls into one of these categories, it means that a plural is usually allowed, though each individual case will be judged on its merits. Categories of mass nouns that can take a plural:
  1. Types or varieties of:
    • food, e.g. yogurt/yogurts, pasta/pastas, cheese/cheeses
    • drink: e.g. rum/rums, lager/lagers
    • plants: e.g. bergamot
    • certain languages or subjects: e.g. music/musics
    • metals and alloys: e.g. steel/steels, solder/solders
    • rocks: e.g. granite/granites, lava/lavas, clay/clays
    • chemical compounds: e.g. fluoride/fluorides
    • some substances or materials: e.g. rind/rinds, soil/soils, sealskin/sealskins, suncream/suncreams
  2. Portions or units of something, especially food and drink: e.g. lager (glasses/bottles of lager = lagers), paella (dishes of paella = paellas), vindaloo (dishes/plates of vindaloo = vindaloos)
  3. Shades of colours: e.g. pink/pinks, scarlet/scarlets, grey/greys
  4. An instance of:
    • an action or process: e.g. genocide (act of genocide = genocides), lambing (an act of lambing = lambings)
    • a surgical operation: e.g. ablation/ablations
    • an emotion, pain, or feeling: e.g. backache/backaches, grief (an instance or cause of grief = griefs),
  5. An area of land of a specified type: e.g. bogland/boglands, terrain/terrains

Clearly these rules are quite ambiguous and some words have been allowed and disallowed at different times, e.g.

  • LOGICS
  • OPALINES
  • PLUMAGES
  • SEDATIONS
  • STOWAGES

Some words have no obvious basis for pluralisation but have been allowed (implicitly or explicitly) at various points, e.g. PELAGES.

Even words which are explicitly listed in the introduction are generally not permitted if their entry doesn't support it.

Adjective inflections

Countdown rules state:-

The rule of thumb for Countdown is that comparatives of all 2-syllable adjectives must be specified in the dictionary or they will not be allowed on the show. You’ll get used to what is acceptable and what isn't over a period of time – but in general, if it's not listed in the dictionary, it is not allowed – with ONE exception – and this is for 1-syllable adjectives like dark, cold, bleak. The dictionary doesn't list darker and darkest, colder and coldest etc, as we have a general rule that all 1-syllable adjectives can be extended in this way, and they are pretty obvious anyway, so there’s no need to take up space in the book.

However this rule is applied somewhat arbitrarily.

Allowed on Apterous, may not be allowed on Countdown

  • BRUTER, BRUTEST (Assumed inflections of BRUT).
  • CHIEFER, CHIEFEST
  • FEINTER, FEINTEST
  • MAINER, MAINEST

Another issue is adjectives labelled "[in combination]". It is generally assumed that these are not allowed.

Verbs

Passive verbs

Some verbs appear as headwords but with only the passive form specified, such as "lenite (be lenited)". It is not clear whether the other inflections are to be allowed, and in practice rulings have been inconsistent (e.g. REPUTING in Episodes 3938 and 5146). These are presently allowed on apterous.

  • ENAMOUR
  • LENITE
  • NEAP
  • REPUTE

American spellings

Countdown rules that American words are permitted, while American spellings are not. This occasionally causes issues because the ODE itself makes no such distinction, simply marking words as "US" in either case. Generally the distinction is obvious but sometimes it's debatable.

A particularly perplexing example is SULPHUR, listed with "(US & Chemistry) SULFUR". This implies that SULFUR is valid, and a usage note specifies that "the -f- spelling is now the standard form in all related words in the field in both British and US contexts". The -f- spelling is listed only as US (not Chemistry) for most related headwords (e.g. SULPHITE, SULPHURATED), but due to the usage note, the -f- spellings (SULFITE, SULFURATED etc) are generally assumed to be allowed.

Allowed on Apterous, may not be allowed on Countdown

  • ASSHOLE (Considered US spelling of ARSEHOLE but has a recognisably different pronunciation in UK and US dialect).
  • BRINKSMANSHIP (Considered US spelling of BRINKMANSHIP which is obviously just nonsense.)
  • EDGEWISE (Marked as "US" for EDGEWAYS.)

Partially capitalised words

Countdown rules specify that words beginning with capital letters will not be permitted, presumably with the intention of disallowing proper nouns and adjectives. However, the dictionary now contains some words with a capital letter in the middle, e.g. iPod and eBay. Under a strict interpretation of the rules these should be allowed, but it seems likely that they would not be.

Unknown rules

In some cases, the dictionary's intention is hard to discern.

  • WHOLIST(S): WHOLISM is given as "alternative spelling of HOLISM" but HOLISM does not list it. Therefore it is unclear whether the alternative spelling should carry over to the subentries of HOLISM, i.e. HOLIST(S).
  • CUMMINGS: The name of the poet e.e. cummings, given as lower case.
  • FARTHER is given as an alternative spelling of FURTHER, in the adjectival sense. The derived noun FURTHERER is also given in the same entry. Presumably this is derived from the verb and therefore FARTHERER is not intended, but this is never actually stated.

Other

  • Plurals of nouns marked "in sing". Some of these seem obviously silly, others are arguable. Examples: AMBIT, GERRYMANDERINGS, GUSTOS, ILKS, OUTSETS, PURVIEWS, RERATINGS, TITTLES, etc.
  • "Usually as noun". Some verbs are listed with "usually as noun" and it's not clear if plurals are intended. Examples: RERATING.
  • "Written abbreviation". Examples: ADVT, BF, GF.
Personal tools