Regional dialects

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    Regional dialects

    I just asked someone what time our meeting was and they said "ten of twelve." What does that mean?
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    Ten of twelve, Tertiary Adjunct of Unimatrix Zero 712.

    They are a Borg.

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    I could be wrong, but I think what you are asking about is a colloquialism. A dialect would be how words are pronounced.

    For example, oil, boil, and soil.

    A northerner would pronounce them oy-el, boy-el, and soy-el, where a southerner would typically pronounce the same words all, ball, and sall.

    Like that.

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    I would have no idea what time that is, either.

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    Obviously 11:50.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PP1 View Post
    I just asked someone what time our meeting was and they said "ten of twelve." What does that mean?
    Like @mcpapa, this means 11:50. I've always heard time told in this manner, or in ways similar to this. I've also heard it expressed "10 til 12". I know mcpapa and I are from roughly the same part of the country, but I didn't think this was just a regional expression.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat View Post
    I could be wrong, but I think what you are asking about is a colloquialism. A dialect would be how words are pronounced.

    For example, oil, boil, and soil.

    A northerner would pronounce them oy-el, boy-el, and soy-el, where a southerner would typically pronounce the same words all, ball, and sall.

    Like that.
    Wouldn’t that be an accent?

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    The Professor's Avatar
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    I’ve heard it called, “Ten to twelve”. Same as 11:50.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PP1 View Post
    Wouldn’t that be an accent?
    I dated a girl, back in the day, who was a linguist and she told me one time, when I asked the same question, "You cannot speak English with and English accent. You can speak English with a Spanish accent, though." She was British and said the terms are interchangeable these days.

    Either way, what you are wanting is a phrase used in a particular region or area. That is a colloquialism.

    Now, students, please get out your grammar books and turn to page 47.

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    swamprat's Avatar
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    Anyway, since I must be serious.....

    My Father used the term all of the time. I use it as well and have always known it to mean 10 minutes until 12 o'clock or Noon. 10 of Noon.

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    swamprat's Avatar
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    FWIW, I am constantly explaining what I mean when I ask, "Was it any count?"

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    It means exactly the opposite of what it looks like it means, which it why I hate it. It means 11:50. It has some arcane reasoning behind it I suspect, but it's nonsensical as far as I'm concerned.

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    And in case it still isn't clear, "12 of 10" would be 9:48.

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    I grew up hearing the phrases "quarter after", "quarter til" and "half past" all the time. I'm wondering, though, if those are fading from use due to the lack of dial watch/clock faces. Everything now is digital.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CincySportsFan View Post
    I grew up hearing the phrases "quarter after", "quarter til" and "half past" all the time. I'm wondering, though, if those are fading from use due to the lack of dial watch/clock faces. Everything now is digital.
    Speaking of the lack of watch/clock faces, in a few years will young people know what is meant by "clockwise" or "counter-clockwise"?

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