Monday, October 29, 2012

Peninsulee Peninsular

I expect most of my readers are pedents and spelling police in some way. I am selectively pendantic. The better you write, the more likely I am likely to be pedantic about your writings.

I have a history of correcting people about correct place names, and so therefore left myself wide open to be corrected in that area. One of my little pet pedantic things is Warrigal and Warragul.

Warrigal is a major north south road in Melbourne's eastern suburbs.

Warragul is a town in west Gippsland

They both have the same entomological origins, that is our Aborigines' word for dingo, or Australian native wild dog.

Daniel has corrected me in the past about the word, and via Twitter I note he still has issues with the misuse of peninsula and peninsular by others.

Whatever he said, I have now forgotten. Let me refresh my memory. Right, peninsula is a noun and peninsular in an adjective. I am a learnin' already. I recall a noun is a naming word. You have big nouns, like  Andrew, or little nouns, like frottage (just thought I might spice it up a bit to keep your interest). No, hang on. Frottage is a doing word, so it must be a verb. No, it is a noun. Frottage is not a word you normally use, you just do it. It is not like you ask someone for frottage.

I'm getting confused. English is really hard. I can't remember what an adjective is. Ok, adjective modifies a noun. Am I getting there?

Well,  peninsula is surely a noun. It is the jutty (my country, my word) out bit from the mainland.

Does it not follow then that it should be Mornington Peninsular, where Fruit Cake lives, peninsular qualifying the noun Mornington, and likewise, Bellarine Peninsular where Sister lives.

If I said Fruit Cake lived on a peninsula on the eastern side of Port Phillip Bay, that would be right. Confusing things further, is Frankston actually on the peninsula? The simple changing of 'the' from 'a' could change the spelling.

This English language learning is so hard. Can you spell out the peninsula(r) rules in one easy rule?

20 comments:

  1. Colin7:41 am

    Andrew

    English lessons at 6.30am (BNE time) - you jest, surely???
    "Mornington Peninsular" - that looks wrong, it is Mornington Peninsula! In this case according to me, Mornington is the "adjective" giving the Peninsula a name, like "brown" Peninsula.
    Thank God, at this early hour, you didn't decide on Algebra lessons - ha ha!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Colin, it is Mornington Peninsula but that is how I know it is, rather than knowing why.

      Delete
  2. Sometimes I feel if the message comes through, what's it matter if the word is spelled correctly or if I end a sentence with a preposition or a verb. At other times I stop and think okay, it's time to start using effect/affect correctly and know regardless from irregardless because just how far can we go with dismantling language and still communicate well. But honestly, most of the time I don't care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rubye, I often have a preposition at the end of a sentence. While I can avoid it, it takes me time to get it right, that is it doesn't flow from my fingers like it should. I think it enough that we get right most of the time.

      Delete
  3. Frottage: Cottage cheese, from the O.E. root word frottar meaning to frenzedally whip - Giving rise to references to "salad days".

    Frankston is being margated as "The Gateway to the Peninsola". At the end of the freeway is a cemetery.

    An easy mnemonic device, Androo, is to compare usage to the word insular. No, that doesn't work. Particular? How about funicular? Yeah, you'll remember funicular. Now you're on the right trak.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now I've got it: The none's used to tell me "an adjective descRibes a noun."

      Thus Frankston is described by some rude people as the a*** end of the world. These are often people who are just passing through.

      Delete
    2. "A*** end of the world" is an adjectival phrase.

      Delete
    3. Frottage has rather a different meaning to me FC, but there could be a connection.

      There is rather a lot of cleverness in the para with mnemonic, but I still don't get it.

      More, my you are on a roll. 'Arse end of the world ', does sound quite descriptive.

      Delete
    4. Shouldn't that be "frenziedly"?

      Delete
  4. Couldn't resist looking up Peninsula in my Collins English Dictionary and it says a Peninsula is literally almost an island. In other words Mornington and Bellarine are almost islands. Since we are on the topic of the English language what really gets up my nose is when people say or write as an example: Andrew and me which is wrong it should be Andrew and I.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Windsmoke, Andrew me looks very wrong when written, but don't mind it so much in casual speech.

      Delete
  5. Peninsula-Peninsular:- Yorke PENINSULA is the land mass that juts out from the mainland between Spencer Gulf and the Gulf of St Vincent. Ardrossan is a PENINSULAR city. (on the Peninsula)
    And shame on you Andrew! You had me leaping up to get my dictionary so I could look up "Frottage" only to find it isn't in there. So now you must tell me, what is Frottage?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ok River. You have done best. I think I get it now. Check urbandictionary.com for a definition of frottage.

      Delete
    2. I know what you mean. People have told me about "it". You were naughty to mention it at all, but I was trying to not say what I was thinking. Gosh, even this is obscure. No mind.

      Delete
  6. @Rubye Jack; having the message come through irrespective of correct spelling or grammar became acceptable in schools in the "free essay" classes, where children were graded on the story not the spelling etc. This is one of the reasons why we now have many teachers and many more children, right up to school and Uni leaving ages, who can't read and write properly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bring back the teacher's red pen, including on their own writing.

      Delete
  7. Urban dictionary, frottage, people who can explain frottage ..all will have to wait until tomorrow, how will I get to sleep haha! Very enlightening comments Andrew.

    ReplyDelete
  8. People are clever and witty Grace.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Replies
    1. Fen, I think I have it now. If there is a name with it, peninsular. If not, peninsula.

      Delete