2022-01-14 ศัพท์ น่าสับสน - Set – C - chaise longue


Revision C

 2022-01-14

ศัพท์ น่าสับสน - Set – C - chaise longue

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Dictionary.com:

ออกเสียง chaise longue = “sheyz-LAWNG” or “cheyz-LANG

French pronounced “shez-LAWNG

 

Common Errors in English Usage Dictionary

chaise longue

When English speakers want to be elegant 

they commonly resort to French, often mangling it in the process

The entrée, the dish served before the plat

usurped the latter’s position as main dish.

 

And how in the world did French lingerie 

(originally meaning linen goods of all sorts

later narrowed to underwear only) 

pronounced—roughly—“lanzheree

come to be American “lawnzheray”? Quelle horreur! 

 

“Chaise longue” (literallylong chair"), 

pronounced—“roughly—"shezz lohng” 

with a hard G on the end became in English “shayz long.” 

Many speakers, however, confuse French chaise with English “chase”

and French longue with English “lounge” 

(understandable since the article in question is a sort of couch or lounge),

resulting in the mispronunciationchase lounge.” 

We may imagine the French as chasing each other around their lounges, but a chaise is just a chair.

 

Merriam-Webster Dictionary:

Word History

'Chaise Lounge' or 'Chaise Longue'?

The amazing history of a common word

When we think of words that have been borrowed from other languages, we tend to first think of those that are fairly recent borrowings

—words that look obviously foreign

like karatecannoli, and sudoku

Older borrowings tend to hide under centuries of Anglicization; 

a word like platoon is the English version of the French peleton, and barbecue comes from the Spanish word barbacoa.

 

Whence English speakers imported 

a new kind of sofa from France in the late 1700s, 

they transformed the name 'chaise longue' ("long chair") 

into 'chaise lounge'

—which makes sense, since 'lounge' is an English word 

spelled with the same letters.

 

Chaise lounge seems to be stuck in an intermediate stage 

of development, with its very French first word 

and much more comfortable second word

 

It turns out that English speakers

in a rush to find a cozy place to set down a name 

for a newfangled sofa imported from France in the late 1700s, 

transformed the name chaise longue

(French for “long chair”) into chaise lounge

 

This kind of gravitational pull toward a more common word 

is known as folk etymology  or

 the transformation of an unfamiliar term

to make it seem more familiar

Since longue is not an English word, 

But lounge, spelled with the same letters, is, 

it’s a natural choice for people seeking linguistic comfort.

 

But there’s more to this story

lounge also has a meaning in English that, coincidentally,

is the same as the original chaise longue,a long couch.” 

That makes the temptation to switch longue for lounge nearly irresistible.

It’s clear from a comparison of the relative frequency

of the use of both terms over time 

that chaise lounge  is gaining on chaise longue in recent years

though a distinction is often recognized: 

chaise lounge is used more frequently 

for outdoor poolside, patio, or deck furniture, 

and chaise longue (or simply chaise) is used for indoor furniture.

 

Another coincidence is that lounge sort of looks like a French word, 

but it probably isn’t

In fact, we’re not certain of the word’s origin

though we know that it was first used as a verb

The Oxford English Dictionary posits that it might come from lungis, meaning “a tall awkward fellow,” 

implying that a tall person would need a long chaise

but that kind of just-so story sounds like folk etymology.

 

This blend of the French origins and English elements 

is also true of the pronunciation of chaise longue/chaise lounge. 

In Frenchchaise longue has a short \e\ in chaise 

and a nasalized \n\ and a hard \g\ in longue: \shez lohn-gh\. 

 

In Englishchaise longue is sometimes 

pronounced with both words Anglicized: \SHAYZ-LONG\

but, along with chaise lounge

chaise is sometimes pronounced in the French manner

\SHEZ\.

 

For those keeping score at home, 

that means that the French term borrowed into English 

that then blended with a similar but unrelated English term 

is sometimes pronounced as it would be in French

Just thinking about it makes us want to lie down to rest.

 

Merriam-Webster Dictionary:

Folk Etymology

Language is a habit.

We get so used to familiar sounds 

and words that unfamiliar ones are sometimes bent and twisted 

to make them seem logical to our ears

 

This orthographic or phonetic violence is unintentional, innocent, and usually transparent once it’s pointed out

 

the French borrowing chaise longue  

is unnatural for most English speakers, 

and the shift to chaise longue  has 

the unimpeachable linguistic advantage of seeming 

both more English and logical.

 

But language, much to the chagrin of us all, is not logical.

This gravitational pull toward a familiar or logical spelling or sound 

is called folk etymology, 

defined as “the transformation of words 

so as to give them an apparent relationship 

to better-known or better-understood words.” 

 

For example,

When asparagus was introduced in England in the 16th century, 

its Latinate name was often rendered as sparagrass

which quickly became sparrowgrass,  

a compound of two English words that had nothing to do 

with either the actual plant or the original word.

 

This process is also sometimes called corruption, 

defined as “change in form often consisting of substitution of 

the familiar for the unfamiliar or adaptation to the sound system 

of a language.”

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