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On 16 Sep 2004 19:04:51 -0700, R H Draney
Bob Cunningham filted:

Anyway, everyone knows Hebrew was the mother of all languages. Ask any conservative, bible-thumping supporter of George W Bush and his wild-eyed gang of hawks.

Empty out your killfile and someone is bound to come along in the next day or two to mention Sanskrit..r

Now you're getting serious, and I thought we were just kidding around. To the Sanskrit proponent I will say that everything I've read is quite emphatic that Sanskrit came from the same proto-Indo-European language that Latin, Greek, Russian, and all of the other Indo-European (IE) languages came from.
The party line is that none of the Indo-European languages is the father of the rest. However, I wonder about Lithuanian: It supposedly has the most elaborate
conjugations and declensions of all IE languages, so it seems reasonable to me to think that it is closest to the mother language and all of the others are degradations from it in varying degrees.
Actually, I was doing some reading on the late linguist and sci.lang regular Larry Trask, after I learned earlier this ... he had identified a precursor language (I forget what he called it). Sadly, the earlier language has no known cognates.

Years ago I read somewhere that some linguists thought a certain obscure language in the Caucasus or thereabouts was probably related to Basque. I haven't seen that in anything I've read recently, so I don't know what ever happened to it. Maybe I dreamed it.
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
(about annoying fellow bus riders with foreign-language sound files) By ... that in AUE a time or three in past years.)

Evil-Eye Fleagle? CDB

I really don't remember a name, but I'll assume you're right.
By the way, does anyone ever wonder why I write ... the necessity to ask for the meanings of esoteric abbreviations.

Speaking as a New Child (oldspeak "Boy"), I have had a lot of fun figuring out these puzzles by watching and, well, puzzling. CDB, still thinkling about some of 'em

As Ahreff has intimated, there is a long list of
abbreviations that have been used in AUE together with a guess at the meanings of a large number of them.
I put it together in about February 2001 with a Perl script that looked at all AUE postings between February 1996 and January 2001 and selected every "initialism" that had been used, where "initialism" was defined according to certain criteria that are spelled out in a footnote to the list under the heading "Explanation of Search Criteria".

The list is at
http://alt-usage-english.org/abbreviations.html . It has first the ones I attempted to supply meanings for; that is followed by the raw list of all other initialisms the script found. In both lists a number is given for each entry. It is the number of occurrences found for that entry.

I invited people to go over the raw list to see if they could supply definitions for any of the ones I hadn't attempted to define. I don't remember that anyone ever did that.
If I were to run the script again with my up-to-date archive, I'm sure I would find many initialisms that aren't in the 2001 list. In particular, I see no sign of things like "MIMIM" and "MIMINM", which have been used quite a bit. (It's possible they were used before 2001. If they were, the script certainly found them, and I inadvertently omitted them in the hand editing I did after the script had done its thing. It wouldn't have been possible for the script to not find them.)
("MIMIM" refers to a variety of English in which "Mary", "merry", and "marry" are homophones, while presumably "MIMINM" could stand for various permutations of the three words, two of which are pronounced the same while one is different. They're really fairly meaningless designations, though, since they don't take into account the greatly varying degrees to which the three pronunciations can differ. One person may have a barely discernible difference between "marry" and "merry"; another may have a ... well, pronounced difference. Both would presumably be in the MIMINM category, or maybe MINMINM.)
Anyway, everyone knows Hebrew was the mother of all languages. Ask any conservative, bible-thumping supporter of George W Bush and his wild-eyed gang of hawks.

No, people like that tend to think that 17th-century English was the mother of all language, and that the only accurate version was the King James version, of which the Hebrew and Greek were inaccurate translations.
I'm sure Adam and Eve spoke Hebrew. I'm not sure about the snake; I think there must have been an interpreter who isn't mentioned in Genesis.

Be that as it may, Zulu is the language of heaven.

izulu - sky, heaven
amaZulu - the Zulu people
phezulu - above, heavenly
isiZulu - the heavenly language
Our Father, who art in heaven...
Baba wethu, osezulwini..

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 full stop uk
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
By the way, does anyone ever wonder why I write "American English" in full instead of writing "AmE"? It smacks ... prefer to see AUE accessible to one and all without the necessity to ask for the meanings of esoteric abbreviations.

I can understand that. Things like MIMIM tend to make me crochety. Even though people have told me what they mean, I find it hard to remember.

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 full stop uk
To anyone who is learning Hungarian, it would be well ... she really say, and what should she really have said?

I don't remember there ever having been a Hungarian speaker here, Bob, but I'm obviously in a position to find ... ugly English diphthongs. I have no idea what the rude expression might have been, but I'll find out, if possible.

Okay, thanks. I'll stand by for further enlightenment.

Meanwhile, I thought by now someone would have come up with the names of the actress and the film. A similar thing happened years ago when I mentioned in AUE my favorite movie line of all time:
But dear, if we had waited till we could afford it we wouldn't even have a piano.
I think it was only a matter of a few hours before someone filled in the details.
To anyone who is learning Hungarian, it would be well ... she really say, and what should she really have said?

I don't remember there ever having been a Hungarian speaker here, Bob, but I'm obviously in a position to find ... ugly English diphthongs. I have no idea what the rude expression might have been, but I'll find out, if possible.

"Kiss my ass!" = Nyald ki a seggem!

Reinhold (Rey) Aman, Philologist
AUEer Emeritus & Eremitus
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
By the way, does anyone ever wonder why I write "American English" in full instead of writing "AmE"? It smacks of inness (cliquishness), and I greatly dislike inness.

I thought you preferred the term "in-groupness".
Removed)
But I respect the right of anyone who wants to be cliquish to be so. I prefer to see AUE accessible to one and all without the necessity to ask for the meanings of esoteric abbreviations.

You wanna see in-groupness, check out alt.folklore.urban some time. The regulars patrol AFU's borders from perpetual onslaughts of clue-deprived newbies via a set of playful shibboleths, including their own esoteric abbreviations (though ironically one is "BOA", for "Ban On Acronyms") and intentional mipsellings. A good sociolinguistic study of these shibboleths by Lara Hopkins used to be online, but it's disappeared. AFU does provide some guidance on its official site, though:

http://tafkac.org/afu/guides/afu survival guide.html http://tafkac.org/afu/guides/boa guide.html
language.html
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