northern lights

northern lights

Friday, 10 October 2014

Some peculiarities of English language.

Yesterday I read an article,' same same but different different' in Write Tribe

 written by Corinne Rodrigues.I remembered that as a student I had maintained a

diary highlighting the  words with double meaning.  Our professor used to explain  that 
English language has so many words which have the same spelling but have ,different

meaning or there are words which have different spelling but have  same

pronunciation.This is why some people call English a difficult  language.

Some words have double meaning. There is no explanation

why it is so.

Given below are some words, which have the same spelling but  have

 an entirely different  meaning
Words with double meanings:

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.

2) The dump was so full that the authorities had to refuse more refuse

3) He could lead if he would get the lead out.

4) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.

5) Since there was no time like the present, he thought he would present the present.

6) He stored all the material in the store.

7) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.

8) I did not object to the object lying in the room.

9) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.

10) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.

11) They were too close to the door to close 

12) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.

13) Upon seeing the tear in the painting, I shed a tear..

14) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

15) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

Some words in a sentence seem absurd.
 There is no egg in egg plant and no ham  in hamburger; no
 apple or pine in pineapple. English muffins weren't invented in England
 or French fries in France . Sweetmeats are candies while
 sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat. If we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand 
can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is 
neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
Some more items which cannot be explained.
 If the plural of tooth is teeth, why  the plural of booth,is not
 beeth? One goose, two geese, one mouse, then why two mice.? 
 You can make amends but not one amend? You can recite a
play and play a recital.Funny? Your  nose runs but feet smell !

There is a two-letter word UP which perhaps has more meanings than any other
 two  letter word. 

It's easy to understand UP, which can refer to the sky or any thing at top of  the
 the list, but when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake UP?
At a meeting, why does a topic come UPWhy do we speak UP and 
why are the officers UP for election and why is it UP to the secretary
 to write   UP a report?
We call UP our friends.
And we use it to brighten UP a room, polish UP the silver; we warm
 UP  the leftovers and clean UP the kitchen.
We lock UP the house and some guys fix UP old articles
At other times the little word has real special meaning.
People stir UP trouble, line UP for tickets, work UP an appetite, and think UP excuses.
To be dressed is one thing, but to be dressed UP is special.
We open UP a store in the morning but we close it UP at night.

We seem to be pretty mixed UP about UP!
To be knowledgeable about the proper uses of UP, look the word UP in the dictionary.
In a desk-sized dictionary, it takes UP almost 1/4th of the page and can add UP to about thirty definitions.
If you are UP to it, you might try building UP a list of the many ways
 UP  is used.
It will take UP a lot of your time, but if you don't give UP, you may
 wind UP with a hundred or more.
When it threatens to rain, we say it is clouding UP.
When the sun comes out we say it is clearing UP.
When it rains, it wets the earth and often messes things UP.
When it doesn't rain for awhile, things dry UP.
One could go on and on, but I'll wrap it UP is time to shut UP.

Written for Write Tribe  pro Blogger week  7 Day 70


  1. Good one, Ma'am. I totally love it. Had so many confusions with English and still does...complex but very interesting language:)

  2. Beautifully compiled! Enjoyed reading the pecularities. Not for nothing, people call English a funny language:)

  3. Remember how Amitabh Bachachan described it as Phunni language?