1 2  4 5 6 7 8 12
wrote:

Presumably those who design forms that ask for "gender" are not laymen,

then.

What are they? Steve Hayes from Tshwane, South Africa http://www.geocities.com/Athens/7734/stevesig.htm E-mail - see web page, or parse: shayes at dunelm full stop org fullstop

uk You're joking, I expect, but I also expect that you are not ****, that there is a serious point ... explainingjust why that is in each case, but it is fundamentally a question of usage,what is (generally) perceived as idiomatic.

Probably questionnaire designers enquire about gender instead of sex to forestall those wits who would answer YES!
CB ( and again Yes!)
As a seperate matter, what about men'o'war; are they still female?

Most definitely called 'she', as were the battleships of WWII, and as are the aircraft carriers of today. All ships are shes. With boats, it's often a judgement call. (You'll agree, Armond, will you not?)

I will agree that "she" is preferred, and I use "she" almost all the time. However this is often viewed (here and elsewhere) as an affectation by readers who are not used to maritime traditions. Frankly I am not at all certain how I would justify the usage of "she" or provide a hint about its origin. I am also not prepared to speculate on how "female" or "feminine" might enter into the discussion.
I like to think that "she" simply derives from the traditions of the sea and has no basis in the concept of noun gender that we encounter in other languages.

Good luck and good sailing.
s/v Kerry Deare of Barnegat
http://kerrydeare.home.comcast.net /
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
It seems to me then, that it is appropriate to ... that it was being treated as if it were female.

I agree; speaking of ships as "she" or "her" is not at all the same thing as feminine gender of nouns in continental European languages. Mike Hardy

dirigé sur fr.lettres.langue.anglaise

Ceci est une signature automatique de MesNews.
Site : http://mesnews.no-ip.com
As a seperate matter, what about men'o'war; are they still female?

Absoloutely - even when they're called Ajax or Nelson ... or King George V.
I'm sure wooden ships named after males still had female figureheads, too.
Cheers,
Daniel.
I have also heard that cars, trains, and other modes of transportation are referred to as female in the English language. I guess it just depends.

I know I named my car "Wanda" when I was in high school because I took French and in French cars are feminine. It may be something that has crept into the English language via world language acquisition.

Emily Wiegert
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
I wondered if "she" applied to a ship was a leftover from the time when Old English had nouns with gender.

According to Millward's A Biography of the English Language , in Old English "scip" and "bat" (respectively, 'ship' and 'boat') were neuter and masculine, respectively. The book has steered me wrong before, but I have no particular reason to doubt it in this case.

OED has a string of cites under 'ship' showing that usage has varied. A poem of 1426 has 'Every ship wayed his anker...' and one from 1588 indicates the purpose of a rudder in a ship is 'to direct hys course'. While Bard (1611) has 'The Shippe ... with her maine mast'. Though they also say that in instances before 1650 'his' may mean 'its'. They point out that C17 & C18 usage was commonly 'Dutchman', 'merchantman', 'man-of-war' etc and that the unspoken 'man' may have weighed on people's minds when they said (1676) 'Wee mett a ... Dutch ship ... He wore a Flagg' or 1784 'The last (ship was) drowned ... within sight of his own shore.'

John Dean
Oxford
OED has a string of cites under 'ship' showing that usage has varied. A poem of 1426 has 'Every ship ... ship ... He wore a Flagg' or 1784 'The last (ship was) drowned ... within sight of his own shore.'

In maneuvering situations it is common to refer to the actions of another vessel in this way. You will hear "He has come right 10 degrees to come to course three one zero." You will almost certainly not hear "She has come right ..."

Good luck and good sailing.
s/v Kerry Deare of Barnegat
http://kerrydeare.home.comcast.net /
Most definitely called 'she', as were the battleships of WWII, ... often a judgement call. (You'll agree, Armond, will you not?)

I will agree that "she" is preferred, and I use "she" almost all the time. However this is often viewed ... the traditions of the seaand has no basis in the concept of noun gender that we encounter in other languages.

In 2002 the newspaper Lloyd's List decided to begin referring to ships as "it":
From
http://www.usmm.org/lloyds.html
"'I decided that it was time to catch up with the rest of the world, and most other news organizations refer to ships as neuter,' said editor Julian Bray."
According to that article, "the tradition of calling ships 'she' grew out of sailors' affection for their vessels, which kept them alive at sea."

Raymond S. Wise
Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
E-mail: mplsray @ yahoo . com
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
mean

that there is a serious point behind your comment. If you wereattempting

to

make a serious point, then your comment is a non ... "gender" instead of "sex" when the desired answer is thesex

of

Or, as Austin Powers answered the question, "Yes, please!"

Raymond S. Wise
Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
E-mail: mplsray @ yahoo . com
Show more