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#87349 11/20/02 09:41 PM
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tsuwm,

Thanks for providing the link to a plausible word count of the English language. There I read:

"The number of words in English has grown from 50,000 to 60,000 words in Old English to about a million today. "

(from your first link)

The first article I read in which it was stated that English included about 600,000 words. That was about 1975 because I was in graduate school then and that's when I would have read the article.

Several years later--maybe ten or so--I read another article that stated the language had grown to 800,000 words.

And there's your link stating the language has grown to a million words.

I've always wondered whether a word taking on a new definition increases the count by one. I would expect so. That's why I become a little excited when I learn a new meaning of a familiar word. I figure I've increased my vocabulary by one.

Now back the first article I read in about 1975. It was in that article that I read that French (I do believe, but could easily be incorrect) was in second place. [That's counting forward by one, Faldage, for the record.] And English, at that time, had over twice as many words as that language in second place.

But I'll begin my googling, and the verb to google really should be a word included in the dictionaries if duologue, a by far less-used word, is included.


#87350 11/20/02 10:10 PM
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"Ger., lit. ‘shut door (or gate) panic’."

Das Tor = the gate
Die Tür = the door
Der Tor = the fool


#87351 11/20/02 11:12 PM
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I'll concede that it's impossible to know how many words are in a language.

However, wouldn't it be possible to get a count of words included in all types of dictionaries in given language? That would exclude languages that don't have a sophisticated array of dictionaries, but at least you could compare words listed in dictionaries.

I have no idea on which sources the articles I read were based. I would think there is some huge data base somewhere that lists all words appearing in dictionaries in any given language. It would be a huge task to create such a data base, but perhaps one exists...somewhere.


#87352 11/21/02 01:43 PM
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That's counting forward by one

Counting forward by one. Hmm. That would seem to say that English is first and French is, what, zeroth? So you're saying English is second to none and French is none. Thare's parbly some here would agree with you on that but others who might disagree. Strenuously.


#87353 11/21/02 02:14 PM
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Faldage,

I have the strongest feeling that you and I interpret numbers completely differently!

If I count forward by one, then first becomes second, doesn't it? I can't imagine counting forward by one and first becoming zeroith.

Wanna work on the national economy together? We could volunteer our services. We could guarantee opposite points of view to be taken into consideration.


#87354 11/21/02 02:58 PM
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Look up difference between "cardinal" and "ordinal" numbers. And remember how long it took
for the concept of "zero" to be recognized.

Raise hands! how many know origin of "count coup" :Dear WW: Why didn't you put up your hand?

http://makeashorterlink.com/?M63052682

#87355 11/21/02 03:14 PM
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Dearest wwh,

I assure you both Faldage and I are more than familiar with the difference between cardinal and ordinal numbers. You must have missed the "last" thread tsuwm started...???

I love zeroith and zeroth. These are both great non-words.


#87356 11/21/02 04:06 PM
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you and I interpret numbers completely differently!

I think what we're arguing about *here is which way is forward. I was all set to quote you back something from one of your posts where you talked about counting forward from the last one but found only I had used that phrase. Still, you didn't object so I claim some kind of moral victory.

I still say it all depends on whether you're counting items or moves.


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