From a stylish English writer in the mid-thirties who had a fair bit of experience of youff:
"They found [him] a tornado of well-bred apologies, all punctuated with an irritating repetition of the word 'actually' -- a habit of modern youth, particularly when it is lying."
I do find these usages fascinating, until they become infuriating. As readers are aware, I am sick to death of Y'know; there is a Beeb programme in which members of the chattering classes comment on the stories in the first editions of the following day's papers. Most of these people are young women with squeaky vowels and a limited tonal range, and ... er ...
Some of them use a new and stylish adverb: particully.
When I was in teaching, I deemed it professionally insulting if I caught myself speaking in this sort of way, even (or a fortiori?) to beta minus students. Yet Mary Beard does it all the time; apparently deliberately, to establish an atmosphere of unpompous intimacy ... or, if not that, of what? Educate me.
"To be frank" and "To be honest" always provoke me to inner mirth because of their plain, ingenuous admission that the rest of what that speaker says is naturally to be taken as unfrank or dishonest. Or am I misunderstanding some more profound linguistic trope? Did Tully ever say ut vera loquar? I think he may have done ...
Talking about profundity ... Before the US election, Mr Trump, accepting the Republican nomination, said "I profoundly accept".
Ahhhhhhh ... happy days .....
"Verily I say unto you"?
I particularly dislike the modern misuse of "around" when "about" is meant – after all, to talk "around" such-and-such would properly mean to avoid talking "about" that topic, but the phrase is often misused to mean precisely to focus upon and discuss it.
Ut vere loquar: Do we have Dominical warrant for this with Amen soi lego, Amen dico tibi? God forbid we distrust any divine saying not prefixed with this formula- unless you are the sort of theologian who insists on hearing the tape recording first.
Indeed. The unspoken truth.
We had a shop in our village which proclaimed in the basket on the counter "Fresh eggs".
Dear Father, I don't suppose Tully ever wrote (or rather said) ut vera loquar, but it is possible that Flaccy did.
I heard a MP last week who thought her place of work was “ Westminister”.
Since you opened the Trump door, Father, you got what you wanted: Trump is gone!!
I was cured forever of using that rhetorical tic 'no doubt' by a tutor who observed that it usually meant 'no evidence'.
A current fad is to drop the word 'like' in every few words. Also, instead of saying 'he said,' to say 'he was like.' I find it maddening.
A don of my acquaintance tries to iron that habit out of his teenage offspring by asking 'But what is the comparator?'
vetusta ecclesia that is a common problem on this side of the pond, probably because of a dearth of medieval cathedrals here, we might not be aware of the meaning of the root "minster".
Language Log had an article about "He was, like, etc." If I recall correctly, it turned out to be a German language filler word that had been imported into US English. (A lot of this kind of transfer happens in the US, possibly because a lot of American kids spent time on US bases in Germany, possibly from immigration.)
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