What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to mean "expensive" rather than "affectionate" or "loved"? Is it still in use, or obsolete? Is it a regional variation or common English? The adjective "dear" looks similar to German "teuer", Swedish "dyr" and even Finnish "tyyris" (which is a regional variation, the preferred word is "kallis"), so that it might well be used to mean the same thing.

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What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to mean "expensive" rather than "affectionate" or "loved"? Is it still in use, or obsolete? Is it a regional variation or common English?

Not sure of the status elsewhere, but although it sounds an eensy bit old-fashioned to my ear, I know of nobody who would raise an eyebrow at the usage.

Cheers, Harvey
Ottawa/Toronto/Edmonton for 30 years;
Southern England for the past 21 years.
(for e-mail, change harvey to whhvs)
What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to mean "expensive" rather than "affectionate" or "loved"? Is it still in use, or obsolete? Is it a regional variation or common English? The adjective "dear" looks similar to German "teuer" . . .

Dear is the same word as teuer.
It is more commonly used in Britain
than in the USA.

Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs (Ottawa, Canada)
dphillipson(at)trytel.com
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What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to mean "expensive" rather than "affectionate" or "loved"? Is it still in use, or obsolete? Is it a regional variation or common English?

Completely dead in American English, if it was even ever alive (SSCTA). A minority of Americans will know it as a
Hiberno-Australo-NZ-SH-Briticism.
What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to ... or obsolete? Is it a regional variation or common English?

Completely dead in American English, if it was even ever alive (SSCTA). A minority of Americans will know it as a Hiberno-Australo-NZ-SH-Briticism.

And by the way, around here they don't
use "affectionate" or "loved" to mean expensive,
either. Where do they do that?

Michael West
Melbourne, Australia
(Expat yank)
What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to mean "expensive" rather than "affectionate" or "loved"? Is it still ... a regional variation, the preferred word is "kallis"), so that it might well be used to mean the same thing.

During my years in the states I perceived "dear" meaning "expensive" as very regional (specifically to Central Pennsylvania and perhaps some areas of New England). Over here. I've heard it too seldom to even call it a regional thing, but rather more like an oddity.
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It is more commonly used in Britain than in the USA.

I haven't found that to be the case.
What is the status of using the adjective "dear" to ... it might well be used to mean the same thing.

I use it regularly. I also use "pricey", although it seems to me that the equivalent "spendy" is in more common use in the USofA.

Is "spendy" a fairly new usage. I've never heard it.
Very few men use words like taupe or mauve. We stick to the basic colors like red and blue. I think that's because the fashion industry markets all those color words to women much more effectively than to men.

You might have the cart before the horse there. From what I read in "Why Men Don't Listen (etc)", men are not as well physiologically equipped for colour discrimination as women. It's the variety of cones that's important, IIRC. That's a broad generalisation, of course: not all women are better than all men, or anything like it, but on average the difference is marked. So the differential marketing results from the difference in ability, not the other way round.

Mike Barnes
Cheshire, England
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