Thursday, April 11, 2013

English Grammar Oddities ....

As one would become familiar with my new blog, one would probably note that I'm interested in English grammar and its oddities.  Here are a couple of examples:

Eccentric spellings include:
  • The only word in the English language with a double 'i', 'skiing'.
  • The only word with three consecutive pairs of double letters in it, 'bookkeeper'.
Another crazy little spelling oddity:
  • There's one English word that changes from plural to singular when you add an 's'. It's 'Princes' which becomes 'Princess'.

And, another:

Richard Lederer, in his book, Crazy English, wrote a pithy if not pleasurable poem about the insanity associated with the past tense of verbs in the English Language.
The verbs in English are a fright.
How can we learn to read and write?
Today we speak, but first we spoke;
Some faucets leak, but never loke.
Today we write, but first we wrote;
We bite our tongues, but never bote.

Each day I teach, for years I taught,
And preachers preach, but never praught.
This tale I tell; this tale I told;
I smell the flowers, but never smold.

If knights still slay, as once they slew
Then do we play, as once we plew?
If I still do as once I did,
The do cows moo, as they once mid?

I love to win, and games I've won;
I seldom sin;, and never son.
I had to lose, and games I lost;
I didn't choose, and never chost.

I love to sing, and sons I sang;
I fling a ball, but nevre flang.
I strike that ball, that ball I struck;
This poem I like, but never luck.

I take a break, a break I took;
I bake a cake, but never book.
I eat that cake, that cake I ate,
I beat an egg, but never bate.

I often swim, as I once swam;
I skim some milk, but never skam.
I fly a kite that I once flew;
I tie a knot, but never tew.

I see the truth, the truth I saw.
I feel from falsehood, never flaw.
I stand for truth, as I once stood;
I land a fish, but never lood.

About these verbs I sit and think.
These verbs don't fit. They seem to wink
At me, who sat for years and thought
Of verbs that never fat or wought.