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Topic: The Awesomesauce with Religion (Read 160674 times)

  • Frenzie
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The Awesomesauce with Religion
I suppose we need one of these.

Edit (20-02-2014): maybe a more positive title will make some difference? :)
  • Last Edit: 2014-02-20, 18:13:52 by Frenzie

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #850
The difference lies in the referential pronouns. "Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe and her president is Petro Poroshenko." This is what makes French so confusing from our perspective, because they say "the woman and his étui à lunettes."
It's because French does not have a his (as a genitive of he) in the first place, but the third person possessive adjective instead, just like there are possessive adjectives in the first and second person (mon, ma, ton, ta). In fact, if German is any guide, then Dutch does the same thing (mein(e), dein(e), sein(e) - mijn(e), dijn(e), zijn(e)) except that in addition to this set of possessive adjectives the third person pronoun has a genitive too, while the first and second person pronouns don't have a genitive.

Ever wondered why the first and second person pronouns don't have genitives in Germanic languages? Now that's confusing!

As to "Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe and her president is Petro Poroshenko" why don't you use its because you are referring to a land? Ah, earlier you said that Dutch does not have an its either. This is even more confusing! Dutch needs more fixing than French!

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #851
dijn
Possible if you're trying to sound like a time traveler, but the form is jouw, not unlike English.

why don't you use its because you are referring to a land?
It might be a conceptual land but in Duitsland what matters is that it's a modified form of land. Het Baskenland (n), de Baskenrepubliek (f), de Baskenstaat (m).

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #852
why don't you use its because you are referring to a land?
It might be a conceptual land but in Duitsland what matters is that it's a modified form of land. Het Baskenland (n), de Baskenrepubliek (f), de Baskenstaat (m).
Actually, your examples show all along that grammatical gender in Dutch has been reduced to the same level as in Swedish.

A grammatical gender can be said to be there if it has a marker or a distinction. In the set

- het Baskenland (n)
- de Baskenrepubliek (f)
- de Baskenstaat (m)

the gender is explicit in the neuter article. Elsewhere it is not there, not in the article and not in the word. So, for all intents and purposes, Dutch has two genders in nouns - neuter versus common, like the Nordic languages, and the distinction of feminine versus masculine can be said to have already gone "conceptual".

It is a stretch to claim that there is a distinction of (grammatical) feminine and masculine - a stretch insofar as it's not (grammatically) explicit. (It's explicit in the pronouns, but not in the nouns.) So it's gone "conceptual" in nouns and "conceptually" you should use an equivalent of its for genitive or possessive of inanimate things. But if you lack an explicit its, you're pretty much stuck, forced to a his or her - and there is no *grammatical* basis for either choice, because the nouns do not give you a *grammatical* hint either way. There can be only a "conceptual" or conventional choice.

In contrast, French has explicit masculine and feminine - explicit in the articles that you are supposed to memorise together with nouns. Even though you can't tell the (grammatical) gender from the word itself, you are supposed to memorise nouns together with the articles, and the article shows the gender. Same in German. Not so in Dutch, so you have already gone the way of Swedish and the grammatical genders you have are common versus neuter. If the school program has not caught up yet, I encourage you to suggest it to the relevant authorities.
  • Last Edit: 2018-01-08, 10:34:03 by ersi

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #853
Elsewhere it is not there, not in the article and not in the word.
That's at least somewhat debatable. I'd have to run numbers on it, but I'll hypothesize that words ending in -iek are feminine more often (wiek, piek, epiek, republiek, kriek, koliek) than not (giek,[1] um...).

But yes, only pronouns like die/dat (that) and zijn/haar (his/her) carry a proper genus marker. At the same time these referential pronouns are meaningless without nouns.

But if you lack an explicit its, you're pretty much stuck, forced to a his or her
Note that the word "missing" might be misleading. In Old English it's genitive his (m), his (n), hire (f). Its is a Modern English development based on neuter hit, from the nominative and accusative. Perhaps Dutch will gain an "its" too if the feminine continues its disappearance. Also note Old English hira (pl.).

In contrast, French has explicit masculine and feminine - explicit in the articles that you are supposed to memorise together with nouns.
Many French words can go either way and you just "randomly" assign a gender to indicate that, for example, I am a man saying this about myself (or vice versa).

If the school program has not caught up yet, I encourage you to suggest it to the relevant authorities.
In linguistics we speak of common (subdivided in m and f) and neuter. I have no idea about the school program.
Also feminine according to the WNT article from 1889, so a victim of the Netherlandic Dutch move toward masculinity for all nouns I suppose.

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #854
Elsewhere it is not there, not in the article and not in the word.
That's at least somewhat debatable. I'd have to run numbers on it, but I'll hypothesize that words ending in -iek are feminine more often (wiek, piek, epiek, republiek, kriek, koliek) than not (giek,[1] um...).
Why debatable instead of demonstrable? The way I was taught, if there is no material distinction, then the purported grammatical distinction has lost its standing.

North Germanic languages acknowledge that f and m have merged and now they only have so-called en-gender and ett-gender, i.e. named after the indefinite articles. In Russian there are no articles, but the gender is seen:

1) in the adjective forms attached to nouns
2) in the endings of nouns (to simplify, а, я for f, о, е for n, and everything else for m)
3) in the declension - distinct declension groups according to gender
4) the related indicative pronouns depend on it

What is the material basis for f and m distinction in Dutch nouns?

You have talked about #4, but this is no better than English hifalutin prose from a century ago where child was referred to as it. When this point (relation to pronouns) is alone by itself, it does not have clear grammatical force, but can be seen as a cultural phenomenon, de-personification of children the same way as there is personification of e.g. ships to be referred to as she.

Many French words can go either way and you just "randomly" assign a gender to indicate that, for example, I am a man saying this about myself (or vice versa).
Nobody ever speaks about the (grammatical) gender of I. You must be the first one. Or maybe the first one after a Very Long Time.

I have no idea about the school program.
I mean the way common grammar books present it, guidebooks for tourists etc. What is their basis to stating that there is an f and m distinction in Dutch nouns? What practical difference does it make? From what I see, it has similar residual importance like in English or Swedish, certainly no grammatical importance.
Also feminine according to the WNT article from 1889, so a victim of the Netherlandic Dutch move toward masculinity for all nouns I suppose.

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #855
North Germanic languages acknowledge that f and m have merged and now they only have so-called en-gender and ett-gender, i.e. named after the indefinite articles. In Russian there are no articles, but the gender is seen:
And Dutch is in an interim stage, most likely moving in that direction. I imagine neuter will also go the way of the dodo, judging by the hundreds of thousands of Dutch-Moroccans who don't seem to know the proper gender of words. (Neither does my wife but she's an actual immigrant, not third or fourth generation.) Either way this is not some kind of artificial difference kept afloat only by schooling like the (written) difference between ei and ij.

What is the material basis for f and m distinction in Dutch nouns?
History in various forms. On the one hand the whole case system used to be a real thing in Old Dutch/Early Middle Dutch just like in Old English and Old/Middle/Modern German, on the other hand in the 16th century they artificially reintroduced some Middle Dutch stuff into the written language because the model of a proper language (Latin) also had those markers. But either way, I don't fully understand what you're saying. Government is obviously feminine, or it wouldn't be so utterly wrong to say "the government and his whatever." This is not particularly different from how an English word like box is obviously neuter imo.

Nouns may not have genus (grammatically marked gender), but they are gendered. Dutch isn't Russian or Latin with their propagandistic, fictional perfections. Dutch is Dutch. :P

I mean the way common grammar books present it, guidebooks for tourists etc. What is their basis to stating that there is an f and m distinction in Dutch nouns? What practical difference does it make? From what I see, it has similar residual importance like in English or Swedish, certainly no grammatical importance.
Afaik they start by only making a distinction between de and het, as they should. The feminine gender is finesse, hardly relevant to making yourself understood. (Saying de neuter noun would also be perfectly comprehensible but it's more disturbing.)

Anyway, I should probably point out that [ət] does function as a referential pronoun in speech. It's as a referential pronoun that it doesn't have a counterpart.

A: Heb je het pakket ontvangen? (Did you receive the package? Lit. have you the package received?)
B: Het is aangekomen. (It has arrived.)

A: Heb je de postkaart ontvangen? (Did you receive the postcard?)
B: Hij/zij is hier.[1] (It's here.)
Masculine for me, feminine in Belgium and in 1950s proper written language.

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #856
History in various forms.
So the distinction is there as much as in Swedish and English. Both Swedish and English were historically like German, but now there is only residue of grammatical genders. From the diachronic point of view they are native elements, but from the synchronic point of view they are more like exceptions or complications in the grammar. Finesses as you say.

But either way, I don't fully understand what you're saying.
I'm saying that the presence or non-presence of a grammatical category is objectively measurable - by means of listing the corresponding grammatical elements like I did. The less elements there are, accordingly the less relevance or reality the category has.

Nobody denies that English used to have three genders in nouns, but it's equally undeniable that it does not have them anymore, and the little it has is little, restricted to pronouns only. By the same standard, Swedes and Danes acknowledge that their number of grammatical genders has reduced to two - en and ett (so-called common and neuter). From what I can see, Dutch genders are like in Swedish or Danish.

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #857
Nobody denies that English used to have three genders in nouns, but it's equally undeniable that it does not have them anymore,
I deny that. :P

Gendered nouns:
Higher living things. Masculine or feminine depending on real-world gender.

Neuter nouns:
Objects and lower living things.

The difference with Old English and Dutch is that the gender is not opaque but can be reasoned out.

From what you're saying I can't tell with certainty if Swedish actually only has two genders like French, or if it's like Dutch, with you discounting an obvious gender because it doesn't meet your standards.

so-called common and neuter
I already said that's how we classify it:
In linguistics we speak of common (subdivided in m and f) and neuter. I have no idea about the school program.

Anyway, other markers live on semi-unproductively. Des = masculine (like in 's avonds, at night, lit. of the night) and der = feminine (like in der naturen bloeme, nature's feminine flower; that'd be des naturen bloem if flower were masculin).

I say semi because I unconsciously derived these rules long before I was taught in school that they were supposedly "archaic" and "frozen" expressions. That's the same kind of thing I mean with -iek feeling feminine to me. Just because there are a lot of ignoramuses out there doesn't mean we're all blind to the patterns. The fact that I strongly feel these things is not because of having studied Middle Dutch or some such, but because of my above-average (for my generation) affinity with 1950s-era Dutch. Anyone who's moderately well-read likely experiences the same, especially if they've lived in Belgium where these distinctions are not just a written vestige.[1]

PS Or at least if they're moderately well-read in sufficiently old editions. They tend to adapt the spelling in newer editions; a practice to which I object unless it abides by the author's intent.

PPS In spoken language there are also some living vestiges like Frits Bolkestein, whom you might know from the Bolkestein Directive. He even pronounces all the -ns in plurals and such, unlike pretty much anyone for the past century or two. I suppose I might be a little bit like him, although I don't do that.
I was talking to someone else who studied Dutch at a different university in Belgium who works as a copy-writer of some sort. He has apparently given up on correctly using feminine referential pronouns because his clients seem to think he's made a mistake when he does.

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #858
Gendered nouns:
Higher living things. Masculine or feminine depending on real-world gender.

Neuter nouns:
Objects and lower living things.

The difference with Old English and Dutch is that the gender is not opaque but can be reasoned out.
The way you use "opaque" here must be with the focus on the objective-world ontological point of view, whereas my point of view is entirely linguistic. From the linguistic point of view, German (incl. Proto-Germanic) genders are explicit, operative and productive, and Russian and Latin genders are near-perfectly transparent and thus even more explicit, operative and productive than in German.

The correlation of the linguistic grammatical reality is incidental to the objective world. There are no necessary one-to-one connections to the objective world.

From what you're saying I can't tell with certainty if Swedish actually only has two genders like French...
Two genders, yes, but French has m and f (no neuter), whereas Swedish has common and neuter (no distinction of m and f). Numerically the same subdivision of genders, but different substance.

...or if it's like Dutch, with you discounting an obvious gender because it doesn't meet your standards.
They are linguistic standards, not my standards. Linguists have their way of detecting whether something is present in a language or not. It's comparative and relative, of course, but that's how language is and works.

Anyway, other markers live on semi-unproductively. Des = masculine (like in 's avonds, at night, lit. of the night) and der = feminine (like in der naturen bloeme, nature's feminine flower; that'd be des naturen bloem if flower were masculin).

I say semi because I unconsciously derived these rules long before I was taught in school that they were supposedly "archaic" and "frozen" expressions.
So your sense of presence of m and f derives from  your acquaintance with older literature. The elements are called already "archaic" and "frozen" in school, but the literature is still so recent that the language teaching has not reoriented its terms.

This applies to some aspects of teaching Estonian also. In Estonian schools, they spend so much time teaching some irrelevant little orthographical details about Estonian well into the secondary school, forgetting big things like syntax, so that when children begin learning English where syntax is a big deal, the children begin unconsciously applying English syntax to Estonian. The result is so horrific that I have nearly ceased reading Estonian newspapers. I only read at least half a century old books and science literature. Which of course makes things even worse, because it should be my duty to educate Estonian teachers.

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #859
So your sense of presence of m and f derives from  your acquaintance with older literature. The elements are called already "archaic" and "frozen" in school, but the literature is still so recent that the language teaching has not reoriented its terms.
In my mind post-WW2 is all "modern" (or in this case more typically postmodern in literary terminology), but again I'm not really sure what you mean by the language teaching. I already said foreigners are taught there are de and het words?

They are linguistic standards, not my standards. Linguists have their way of detecting whether something is present in a language or not. It's comparative and relative, of course, but that's how language is and works.
It does mention something about linguistics on my diploma, you know. :P

Two genders, yes, but French has m and f (no neuter), whereas Swedish has common and neuter (no distinction of m and f). Numerically the same subdivision of genders, but different substance.
Then clearly it's at least a century ahead of Dutch. ;)

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #860
I already said foreigners are taught there are de and het words?
That's de and het gender, so to speak, but how about m and f? Are Dutch children in schools taught about m and f as currently relevant grammatical genders?

It does mention something about linguistics on my diploma, you know.
Yes, I know. This is why I keep wondering why you argue as if there were something to argue.

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #861
That's de and het gender, so to speak, but how about m and f? Are Dutch children in schools taught about m and f as currently relevant grammatical genders?
If by "grammatical" you mean "kind of like in German" then my dad was in the '40s and '50; I wasn't in the '90s and '00s.

Yes, I know. This is why I keep wondering why you argue as if there were something to argue.
I'm merely taking a conservative position. A traditional, respectable grammar like the ANS says that both positions are defensible and I agree with them.

http://ans.ruhosting.nl/e-ans/03/03/01/body.html

Quote
Het belangrijkste genusonderscheid tussen substantieven noemen we dan ook dat tussen 'de -woorden' (zoals ezel) en ' het-woorden' (zoals paard). Vanuit dit standpunt bezien kan men dan ook zeggen dat het Nederlands een tweegenerasysteem heeft
Quote
The most important genus distinction between substantives we call that between de words (like ezel) and het words (like paard). From this point of view you can say that Dutch has a two genera system.

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De de-woorden worden, ook als ze geen levende wezens aanduiden, in de geschreven taal ook wel onderscheiden in mannelijke en vrouwelijke woorden, respectievelijk masculina en feminina. (De het -woorden worden onzijdig (neutrum) genoemd.) Vanuit dit standpunt bezien (vergelijk 1) kan men dus zeggen dat het Nederlands een driegenerasysteem heeft. Ook in de gesproken taal , zij het slechts sporadisch in het noorden, maar algemeen in het zuidelijke deel van het taalgebied, waar de dialecten een driegenerasysteem hebben, wordt dat onderscheid gemaakt.

tl;dr In the north we mostly have a two genera system, except in writing (and formal spoken language), while in the south there still exists a degenerating three genera system.

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Het bedoelde onderscheid is alleen van belang voor de verwijzing door middel van persoonlijke en bezittelijke (en in beperkte mate vragende en betrekkelijke) voornaamwoorden
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The distinction in question is only relevant for referral through personal and possessive (and in limited degree questioning and relative) pronouns.

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Naar mannelijke substantieven wordt verwezen met de voornaamwoorden hij, ie, zijn, z'n, wiens, naar vrouwelijke met zij, ze, haar, (d)'r, wier.
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Masculine substantives are referred to with the pronouns hij, ie, zijn, z'n, wiens, feminine with zij, ze, haar, (d)'r, wier.

Being from '97, the ANS grammar partially predates the natural compromise of saying Dutch has a two genera system with one of the genera subdivided in masculine and feminine. But I intend to keep annoying Dutch teenagers with female doors for decades to come if I can help it, just like Frits Bolkestein.  :devil: [1]

Anyway, if you want the most up to date Dutch grammar just check the other topic. It's at Taalportaal, in English. They explicitly take a progressive stance, but one that's slightly too Netherlands-centric for my taste. I should probably point out that these (dialectal, not formal due to context) gender markers are alive and well in the speech of many people around me here in Antwerp, which colors my position a bit differently from the Amsterdam/Utrecht/Leiden people, with whom I would've agreed much more completely a decade ago. I now recognize that it's effectively our Hollandic dialect. Standard Dutch is both southern and northern, western and eastern. It is not and should not be just Hollandic. I suppose I'm very progressive as far as that particular issue goes, but cynically speaking it's quite easy to be progressive when it is simultaneously conservative.

http://www.taalportaal.org/taalportaal/topic/pid/topic-14419054999947754

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Dutch nouns can be sorted into two genders, labelled common and neuter. Common gender comprises the historical masculine and feminine gender, which have merged in most varieties. Common and neuter can be distinguished with the help of the definite article. Common gender nouns take the article de, neuter gender nouns take het. This is in line with the fact that gender is a morphosyntactic feature, expressed through agreement on associated words. In Dutch, gender agreement is visible on definite articles, adjectives in attributive position and a variety of pronouns: the relative, the personal, the demonstrative and the possessive pronoun, as well as on the indefinite pronouns ieder and elk. The two relative pronouns wiens whose (masculine) and wier whose (feminine)are becoming archaic, and are often used incorrectly.

[...]

Dutch personal pronouns are special because they distinguish three genders rather than two. The three pronominal genders have the values masculine, feminine and neuter. The mismatch between the nominal and the pronominal genders goes hand in hand with difficulties and extensive variation.
Admittedly the gender of door is something my parents explicitly taught me when they noticed I was naturally acquiring the wrong gender from my peers. :lol:
  • Last Edit: 2018-01-08, 19:47:27 by Frenzie

  • Frenzie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #862
Further investigation shows that in 2013, a doctoral thesis came out which is what the Taalportaal article lists as one of its sources.

Audring, Jenny. 2009. Reinventing Pronoun Gender. Amsterdam. Free University. Thesis. http://dare.ubvu.vu.nl/bitstream/handle/1871/15413/8136.pdf

The abstract says that 20-year-olds use mainly semantic agreement (like in English) and the grammatical agreement with pronouns is limited mostly to 60-plus-year-olds. (Tell that to the Antwerp teens who do pronominal agreement and then some. :P)

Looks like I have to read it. Which is annoying (or awesome, let's say both), because I have yet to read The Dawn of Dutch, freely available from http://www.jbe-platform.com/content/books/9789027264503.

Anyway, thanks! This thesis had slipped under my radar.
  • Last Edit: 2018-01-08, 20:13:52 by Frenzie

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #863
Anyway, thanks! This thesis had slipped under my radar.
And thank you for the reference(s). I found what to read in the thesis piece: Chapter 9, Diachrony and Parallels in Germanic.

On page 179 in the thesis piece there is a topical table where Dutch is neatly placed with Danish and Swedish.

But I have not properly kept in mind that Icelandic retains just about everything in Germanic grammar, including the three genders. I have Rask's work on Icelandic lined up for reading and I should not postpone it any longer. Every new generation should always reread the classics.

  • Barulheira
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A girl's gender
Reply #864
In Dutch and German, a girl is neuter. Suck on that. :P

That's right. One never knows, at first glance. :left: :right:

  • rjhowie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #865
 :faint:
"Quit you like men:be strong"

  • Belfrager
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #866
Barbarians discussing gramar... it's a lost world.
A matter of attitude.

  • rjhowie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #867
Grammar.
"Quit you like men:be strong"

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #868
Grammar.

"Quit you like men:be strong"
:)

  • rjhowie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #869
Eh, ersi?!  I just pointed out tht Belfrager had misspelt the word grammar ( :lol: ). By th eway that quote "Quit you like me be strong was the motto of my branch of a national youth organisation here attached to churches and is from the Bible.  :up:
"Quit you like men:be strong"

  • ensbb3
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #870
attached to churches and is from the Bible.
Explains why it doesn't make much sense. Doesn't excuse the bad grammar.

I'd let missing an 'm' in 'grammar' pass as a typo...
"Quit you like me be strong was the motto[...]
...But you're gonna want to close that quote. Maybe stay away from criticizing someone else's grammar. :)

  • rjhowie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #871
You are being wrong as  I was right to point out that the word was misspelt so are you sober?? My biblical quote used by a uniformed youth organisation long church attached is perfectly fine and an odd distraction from my passing and minor correction from Belfrager!
"Quit you like men:be strong"

  • Belfrager
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #872
out tht Belfrager
By th eway
Do you want me to correct you? I think not.
A matter of attitude.

  • rjhowie
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #873
Haha. Revenge is sweet eh? :D
"Quit you like men:be strong"

  • ersi
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Re: The Awesomesauce with Religion
Reply #874