Learn Japanese with JapanesePod101.com

View topic - one

one

NO SPAM ALLOWED! Discuss stuff not related to Japan or Japanese. The rules are the same in this forum as in the other forums.

one

Postby guitarplayer7694 » Fri 04.04.2008 5:52 pm

Grammar wise any one know why it is "a one" and not "an one", also on another forum I go to they had a big discussion about how "an hero" is correct.
User avatar
guitarplayer7694
 
Posts: 202
Joined: Fri 11.02.2007 7:33 pm

Re: one

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Fri 04.04.2008 5:58 pm

It has to do with whether the pronunciation of the next word is a consonant or vowel. If it is a consonant, you use "a", if it's a vowel, you use "an". The spelling is irrelevant -- since "one" is pronounced with a w-consonant sound, it gets "a". (There are some English dialects where speakers use "a" even before vowel sounds, at least in certain cases.)

Words starting with "h" can vary some, especially between British and American English. However, "an hero" is wrong in my variety of American English. If somebody is trying to say that *only* "an hero" is correct, that is patently absurd.
-Chris Kern
User avatar
Yudan Taiteki
 
Posts: 5609
Joined: Wed 11.01.2006 11:32 pm
Native language: English

Re: one

Postby katafei » Fri 04.04.2008 6:28 pm

That's an interesting question, actually. Never realised the 'a one' vowel pronunciation rule.

Although it would probably never be considered proper English, I can surely imagine some BE dialects where 'an hero' would be used, and this would surely go under the vowel pronunciation heading.
Imagine:
'ee's an ero, int ee?'

^_^
(not unlike Eliza Doolittle)
We are all but images of our time
User avatar
katafei
 
Posts: 1766
Joined: Sun 07.09.2006 9:56 am
Location: A'veen
Native language: Dutch; Female

Re: one

Postby kayuu » Fri 04.04.2008 6:44 pm

If you read some classical British literature they will use an before words like hero and heroine. Jane Austen has used it for sure.

http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext94/nabby11h.htm

First line of the first chapter. :)

But, yeah, it entirely depends on how you'd pronounce it. Even words like FAQ are an FAQ even though they don't start with a vowel at all, purely because the F is like an 'eff' sound - a vowel sound. I think there's a word for these kinds of sounds, I think it's mute. At least in French when they talk about the 'h' sounds that are used with l' (e.g. l'hôpital) they call the h the 'h muet'.

mute adj (muter, mutest) ... 4 said of a letter in a word: not sounded, like the final e in many English words, eg bite, mute. ...
noun ... 4 an unsounded letter in a word.


But the generally accepted writing of 'an hero/heroine' these days is 'a hero/heroine'. In fact...

Derog article, probably NSFW, but it's an example of how an hero is not generally accepted by today's 'grammar nazis', despite it being used in the past:
http://www.encyclopediadramatica.com/An_hero
User avatar
kayuu
 
Posts: 105
Joined: Mon 06.11.2007 5:38 pm
Location: ロンドン、イギリス
Native language: 英語
Gender: Female

Re: one

Postby richvh » Fri 04.04.2008 7:37 pm

For me, it's "a FAQ", because I don't spell it out. On the other hand, someone is "an S.O.B.", because I do spell it out - ess oh be.
Richard VanHouten
ゆきの物語
richvh
 
Posts: 6450
Joined: Thu 09.29.2005 10:35 pm

Re: one

Postby guitarplayer7694 » Fri 04.04.2008 8:23 pm


ah "Encyclopedia Dramatica" many a day wasted reading stupid articles, learned the rules of the internet there.
User avatar
guitarplayer7694
 
Posts: 202
Joined: Fri 11.02.2007 7:33 pm

Re: one

Postby two_heads_talking » Sat 04.05.2008 10:29 am

guitarplayer7694 wrote:Grammar wise any one know why it is "a one" and not "an one", also on another forum I go to they had a big discussion about how "an hero" is correct.



Traditionally "an hero" is correct. gramatically "an hero" is correct. However, due to vocabulary evolution you don't hear it very often. If you are pronouncing the "h" you will commonly hear "a." A hero, A hungry monkey etc. But if you don't pronounce the "h" you will commonly hear "an." An honor, An homage, etc. Sometimes it's tough to keep up with the changes. I know that my children are being taught different grammar and other principles at school, than I was taught. In fact, while helping my daughter with an assignment, the paper came back with all sorts of what I considered incorrect grammar etc. I came to find out that indeed those grammar principles were what was being taught. It was rather disheartening to say the least.
User avatar
two_heads_talking
 
Posts: 4137
Joined: Thu 04.06.2006 11:03 am
Native language: English

Re: one

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Sat 04.05.2008 12:25 pm

It's the nature of language. Although I'm a bit surprised; I would have expected school instruction to change rather little in comparison to the change in the actual language (in particular, ~20 years seems rather small for major changes). Language change (at least within one or two lifetimes) is pretty much universally condemned by usage writers and style guides.
-Chris Kern
User avatar
Yudan Taiteki
 
Posts: 5609
Joined: Wed 11.01.2006 11:32 pm
Native language: English

Re: one

Postby chikara » Sun 04.06.2008 11:11 pm

guitarplayer7694 wrote:... on another forum I go to they had a big discussion about how "an hero" is correct.

I would have thought that in American English "an hero" would be correct just as "an herb" is correct ;) :lol:
Don't complain to me that people kick you when you're down. It's your own fault for lying there
User avatar
chikara
 
Posts: 3576
Joined: Tue 07.11.2006 10:48 pm
Location: Australia (SA)
Native language: English (Australian)
Gender: Male

Re: one

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 04.08.2008 12:07 pm

chikara wrote:
guitarplayer7694 wrote:... on another forum I go to they had a big discussion about how "an hero" is correct.

I would have thought that in American English "an hero" would be correct just as "an herb" is correct ;) :lol:


In America, we say hero and erb.. the "h" is silent in herb. or at least that's the way I pronounce it. saying the "h" for herb seems to be more of a british pronounciation.
User avatar
two_heads_talking
 
Posts: 4137
Joined: Thu 04.06.2006 11:03 am
Native language: English

Re: one

Postby kayuu » Tue 04.08.2008 12:26 pm

two_heads_talking wrote:
chikara wrote:
guitarplayer7694 wrote:... on another forum I go to they had a big discussion about how "an hero" is correct.

I would have thought that in American English "an hero" would be correct just as "an herb" is correct ;) :lol:


In America, we say hero and erb.. the "h" is silent in herb. or at least that's the way I pronounce it. saying the "h" for herb seems to be more of a british pronounciation.


Oh yes, I'm southern English (think stereotypical British accent) and we say herb. As do the folks up north. On the subject of British accents, at least we southerners don't have silly words like 'owt' or pronounce the as t'. ;) "I dint do owt t'other deeh" springs to mind.
User avatar
kayuu
 
Posts: 105
Joined: Mon 06.11.2007 5:38 pm
Location: ロンドン、イギリス
Native language: 英語
Gender: Female

Re: one

Postby AJBryant » Tue 04.08.2008 1:12 pm

kayuu wrote:at least we southerners don't have silly words like 'owt' or pronounce the as t'. ;) "I dint do owt t'other deeh" springs to mind.


I beg your pardon -- if you're intimating the word "aught" -- yes, we DO have it, and use it. Some people just, apparently, didn't learn it.


Tony
User avatar
AJBryant
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5313
Joined: Sun 10.09.2005 11:29 am
Location: Indiana
Native language: English
Gender: Male

Re: one

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 04.08.2008 1:37 pm

Tony, your quote-fu has failed you. while you have quoted both kayuu and myself, it seems that I have been given credit for kayuu's quote and quite frankly, I really don't deserve the credit for that baloney.. lol :shock:

In fact I am noticing alot of quotes doing this lately.
User avatar
two_heads_talking
 
Posts: 4137
Joined: Thu 04.06.2006 11:03 am
Native language: English

Re: one

Postby kayuu » Tue 04.08.2008 1:37 pm

AJBryant wrote:
kayuu wrote:
two_heads_talking wrote:at least we southerners don't have silly words like 'owt' or pronounce the as t'. ;) "I dint do owt t'other deeh" springs to mind.


I beg your pardon -- if you're intimating the word "aught" -- yes, we DO have it, and use it. Some people just, apparently, didn't learn it.


Tony



No need to get defensive, the both of you. I'm talking about British Northerners not American Northerners. :roll: British northerners have the actual word 'owt' (pronounced 'out'), and it means 'anything', I just think it sounds as silly as the American herb, we don't use it at all in the south.
User avatar
kayuu
 
Posts: 105
Joined: Mon 06.11.2007 5:38 pm
Location: ロンドン、イギリス
Native language: 英語
Gender: Female

Re: one

Postby AJBryant » Tue 04.08.2008 4:03 pm

Fixed the quote-fu-bar. ;)

And... OH, THAT "owt." Yeah, I've actually seen that a few times in Britfictionbooks. I think it's regional dialect that doesn't seem to have made it to the States. :)

Sorry!!!

Tony
User avatar
AJBryant
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5313
Joined: Sun 10.09.2005 11:29 am
Location: Indiana
Native language: English
Gender: Male

Next

Return to General off topic

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests