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I read on a messageboard someone uses 'What say you?' to mean 'What do you say/ What do you think?'

Is it an old-fashioned usage, by which you don't need do/does to form an interrogative/negative form, as in "Ask not what you can do for your country..."?

Thanks.
Comments  
I heard the phrase "What say you?" in the Lord of the Rings movie so yes, I think it is an old-fashioned usage.
SpongeBarbI read on a messageboard someone uses 'What say you?' to mean 'What do you say/ What do you think?'

Is it an old-fashioned usage, by which you don't need do/does to form an interrogative/negative form, as in "Ask not what you can do for your country..."?

Thanks.

Yes, it old-fashioned".

EGs

aside about the wisdom of the young Prince meant only for the audience --; "So wise, so young, they say do never live long" --; is overheard by the Prince himself --; "What say you uncle?" --; forcing Richard to improvise brilliantly: But this superiority of wit places the audience in any uneasy position: if we laugh with the deceiver we could share his dehumanizing of the dupe. Laughter here might


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Source information:
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Code
FU4

Genre
W_fict_drama

Subject
W_imaginative

Medium
book

Keywords
Drama in English, 1945- - Texts
drama; play; historical; adapted from novel by Samuel Richardson

Source info
Pamela, or, The reform of a rake : a play adapted from the novel by Samuel Richardson. Morgan, Fidelis and Giles Havergal. UK: Amber Lane Press, 1987, pp. 5-77. 1853 s-units.


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As honour, loss of time, travail expense, Wounds, friends, and what else dear that is consumed In hot digestion of this comorant war --; Shall be struck off." Hector, what say you to't? The ensuing discussion is based around the concept of value: whether Helen is worth the daily blood with which she is painted. Hector believes that "She is not worth the holding", and, "


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Source information:
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Code
HUB

Genre
W_essay_school

Subject
W_soc_science

Medium
m_unpub

Keywords
---
Essays; literature

Source info
[Schoolboys' essays]. u.p., n.d., pp. ??. 1169 s-units.
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
To use the auxiliary 'do' to form questions and negative clauses is a phenomenon that is only about 400 years old. 'Do' existed in Old English but it meant 'to cause' as in What caused the accident? In Shakespeare's day 'do' began to be used in questions and there were two ways to form a question. You could say

Do you know him? or
Know you him?

Up to the 16th century questions had been formed by changing the word order, and that's how they are formed in other Germanic languages even today.
Examples:

Sprechen sie Deutsch? (= Speak you German?)
Talar ni svenska? (= Speak you Swedish?)

Inversion is still used even in English with some very common verbs:
Is he rich?
Can you swim?

Wouldn't it be nice if English were consistent and we said:
Does he be rich?
Do you can swim?

Cheers
CB
Hi,

Wouldn't it be nice if English were consistent and we said:
Does he be rich?
Do you can swim?
Plenty of my students do say that.

Best wishes, Clive
Oh, great! Emotion: tongue tied So I am here trying to learn the rules to speak correctly while other students take things easy and just speak without paying too much attention to the rules. Why do I waste my time on reading grammar books then?.. Emotion: surpriseEmotion: sad lol
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CliveHi,

Wouldn't it be nice if English were consistent and we said:
Does he be rich?
Do you can swim?
Plenty of my students do say that.

Best wishes, Clive
Hi Clive

Your comment made me chuckle. Thank you for that. Actually, the use of do in questions is a phenomenon that is very difficult to explain. As far as I know, it is unique to English and there was absolutely no need for it. There is nothing similar in the other Germanic languages. Questions had been asked without do for over a thousand years in English and who knows for how long before the language became to be called English. There was no inadequacy in the English language, yet people began asking questions with do. Very, very strange.

I know it's highly unlikely, but perhaps in the future we'll get rid of do in questions. Who knows what English will be like in a thousand years. It certainly won't be what it is today. All languages change constantly and people usually object vehemently to the changes that happen in their lifetime. Thay have no objection to changes that happened before they were born.

As English spreads around the world and various varieties of it are spoken by more and more people, who knows what will happen. An English dictionary has been published in the Far East which contains words like actsy and farang. According to that dictionary, they are English words. The compilers say they have colonized the English language.

Hmm... I don't know if a language can be colonized but I do know no language remains unchanged - unless it is an artificial one and is placed in a sealed box right after it began its existence.

Cheers
CB
Thank you guys- especially to CB; very interesting info you gave us there!