Re: Joining FoRK?

Alexa Champion (
Wed, 4 Aug 1999 13:24:43 -0100

>> On a linguistic purist note, though, natural
>> language evolution always trends towards
>> disambiguating, not the other way around.
>I don't think that's true. Consider the evolution
>of English from its Germanic relatives. English
>has managed to drop genders for nouns, and
>more recently has dropped the distinctions
>between formal-you and informal-you, and
>between singular-you and plural-you (except
>where y'all / youse is accepted).
>- Joe

As a student of linguistics, I have to agree. I didn't want to get all
wrapped up in this, but Joe is right. In almost every other Germanic and
Romance language, there are indicators on the ends of verbs or pronouns that
indicate the gender of the direct object. Can someone chime in about
non-Western languages such as Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, etc.