Philology: A Group for Verbivores


Philology: A Group for Verbivores

Philology is a group for people who love languages, words, and grammar.

Members: 104
Latest Activity: Oct 13

Discussion Forum

walking though clouds a poem

Started by Michael J. K.. Last reply by Michael J. K. Feb 8. 1 Reply

The French Canadian Language Explained

Started by Regular Joe Nov 23, 2015. 0 Replies

Expressions that mean the opposite

Started by Last reply by Sep 4, 2015. 19 Replies


Started by Michael. Last reply by Regular Joe Apr 22, 2014. 4 Replies

Who are the shining stars of philology and literature?

Started by John H. Parrott. Last reply by Regular Joe Apr 22, 2014. 5 Replies

Mind Your Language (a comedy series)

Started by Regular Joe Apr 22, 2014. 0 Replies

Fun new words...

Started by Silas Moser. Last reply by Regular Joe Apr 22, 2014. 43 Replies

Commonly misused English words (malapropisms)

Started by David Arbogast. Last reply by Regular Joe Apr 22, 2014. 8 Replies

Create Your Own Language!

Started by Lon R.. Last reply by Michael Kure Jan 30, 2014. 7 Replies

Study buddies?

Started by Mitchell Willie. Last reply by Michael Kure Jan 29, 2014. 1 Reply

The Meaning of liff

Started by Lukas Ostgaard Mar 30, 2011. 0 Replies

Moderation. What is it for you?

Started by Tanya Apostolova. Last reply by Miles R. Dec 29, 2010. 2 Replies

Draft - Language & Writing Blog

Comment Wall


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Comment by Jack Bauer on August 9, 2015 at 5:36pm

Good grief.  Impressive paranoia.  The military trains some soldiers in Arabic ... I think you'll survive a foreign language Google search.

Comment by David R. on August 9, 2015 at 5:16pm

I would enjoy learning the specifics of how the Arabic language works, but I'm afraid to Google it or anything because it would probably put me on some "list" somewhere nowadays.

Comment by Lon R. on January 1, 2014 at 1:54am

This is a loooong shot, I know, but is anyone here interested in isolating/analytic languages, especially those of China and Southeast Asia? Haha.

Comment by Rabbi on April 1, 2012 at 2:11pm


I have just published a book that I think would be interesting for people who like short stories, the west, learning about other cultures, Jewish holidays and life and the way it should have been.


I would so love for some guys from this exclusive club to read it and share what you think with me.  It would help me a lot.

You can get it here

Here is what others have said about it:


 "What fun it is to follow Reb Bahir's rabbi-hero on his journey through the Wild West and the Jewish calendar. A wonderful read, it sneaks in solid teaching wrapped in a rollicking tale." — Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, founder of the Jewish Renewal Movement


"Jewish mystical stories were born at the strange, hazy crossroads between uncommon wisdom and common sense. The Light Giver hearkens back to the time when rabbis didn't lecture from podiums and write blog posts from iPads, but went on adventures into the wild, befriending runaway slaves and dodging Injun arrows, throwing themselves into the wide world because G-d created it all. Written in the fine tradition of Reb Shmuel Munkes and The Frisco Kid, the stories in this book are funny, sad, innocent and world-weary, and truly, truly wise." --- Matthue Roth, author of Yom Kippur A Go-Go: A Memoir "At once funny, touching, and profound,


The Light Giver takes us on a journey through the Jewish calendar, the Jewish spirit and into the Jewish soul. Rabbi Davis is by no means conventional, and this book is unlike any other. Within it there are sparks of Divinity waiting for us to unearth. This book is a delight to read and learn from." --- Mayim Bialik, actress and author of Beyond the Sling


Many thanks

Comment by David Arbogast on November 9, 2011 at 11:27am

A friend sent me the following link.  I thought you might enjoy it as much as I did.

Comment by Cameron Dean on May 27, 2011 at 6:26am

Greetings Everyone, 

As a student of linguistics and foreign language, I'm happy to have found this group. It looks like there is a lot of great content in the discussion forums.  Hopefully I can contribute some stuff now and then as well.


Comment by RooThawg on January 30, 2011 at 10:56am
Perhaps proper noun is the wrong term, I am not a grammarian.  It is true that 'German shepherd' is a common usage but it is still incorrect.  The AKC, GSDCA-WDA, USCA, the Verein fur Deutsche Schaferhundeand Captain Max von Stephanitz all concur.  They know more about this than Webster's or Oxfords.  Both of these publications are not with out error.  Most likely both dictionaries also list "Alsatian" as a correct name for the breed.  This is incorrect and Great Britain almost lost their her right to register their GSD's in the breed books over it.
Comment by Miles R. on January 29, 2011 at 11:23pm

Roo, you write:

The breed name should be treated as a proper name because it is although some publishers miss this point.

If you can say that the name of a dog breed is a proper noun (or proper name, as you say) then you must not understand what a proper noun is. A proper noun is an expression that designates an individual, as contrasted with a common noun, which designates a kind. So, for instance, "Rin Tin Tin," the name of a particular German shepherd--or German shepherd dog, as you prefer to say--is a proper noun; the expression "German shepherd" or "German shepherd dog" is a common noun. A dog breed is not an individual; the name of a dog breed is not a proper noun; it is a common noun. In English, common nouns are not capitalized unless they derive from proper nouns. Thus, "German" (from the proper noun "Germany") is capitalized, but "German shepherd (dog)" is not. I do not believe that any respected dictionary or style guide says otherwise.


As for your claim that it is a misuse of the expression "German shepherd" to use it to refer to a dog breed, you are at odds not only with the Oxford English Dictionary but with English usage itself. One can, if one wishes, use the complete expression "German shepherd dog"; but the term "German shepherd" has been in common use as the name of a dog breed for decades, and to claim that such use is incorrect is baseless.

Comment by RooThawg on January 29, 2011 at 10:50pm

Miles R.,

You caught a typo.  I mispelled shepherd.  You mentioned captitalization and made a distinction about collies and pit bulls.  If I may, it is correct to capitalize a breed name, i.e., Border Collie or Bearded Collie.  If speaking generically collie is appropriate.  One might write coon hound or Plott Hound.  The breed name should be treated as a proper name because it is although some publishers miss this point.  The breed I mentioned is German Shepherd Dog (from the German shepherd's dog as in "That's a dog of German Shepherds").  This is a large aside but to restate it the common error most periodicals is to write German shepherd which is the person that herds the sheep.  If I recall my other post correctly I'm repeating myself for which I offer apology.  At any rate it is a three word name and all thre words should be capitalized.

The remark about pit bulls is interesting.  In the south (or South?) if we see pitbull or pit bull we understand it to mean APBT and nothing else. A bull is a bovine.  Often one might hear the mention of bulldog.  Most people would visualize an AKC type Bulldog, often erroneously called an English Bulldog.  If you know the bubba that says "bulldog" you would know that he means pit bull, APBT.  He is also meaning or remembering game-bred dogs.  What a colloquial mishmash.  Well, it is not a mishmash because all the terms are related but I'm confident you get my point.

Comment by Miles R. on January 17, 2011 at 11:42pm

Welcome, Roo. I figured out that you were jesting in your first paragraph, but your misspelling of 'shepherd' seems to be unintentional: it's 'shep' (from 'sheep', of course) + 'herd'; cf. 'goatherd' and 'swineherd'.


About capitalization (which I is what I take you to be making a point about; correct me if I have misunderstood you), there is no more reason to capitalize the names of dog breeds than there is to capitalize the names of animal species. We write 'The shepherd herds sheep with a dog', not 'The shepherd herds Sheep with a Dog'; so we write 'His dog is a collie', not 'His dog is a Collie'. The exceptions are proper nouns and proper adjectives that occur within names of breeds, like 'German' in 'German shepherd', 'Dane' in 'great Dane', etc.


To me it is more bothersome when the abbreviated term 'pit bull' is used by people who have no idea what kind of dog they are talking about, as if they were talking about a kind of bull rather than a kind of terrier.


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