Is the adjective 'meritous' a real English word?Why isn't it listed in any dictionaries,but often found on the web?
What's the difference in meaning between 'meritorious' and 'meritous'?
No, 'meritous' is not a word. It's found a lot on the web because many web users have English skills roughly equivalent to those of plankton.
That's certainly true....
...judging by the plankton who post here.
...majestically enthroned amid the vulgar herd...
No, not listed in any dictionaries, though I noticed it's close to the latin from which meritorious is derived.
[Middle English, from Latin meritōrius, earning money, from meritus, past participle of merēre, to earn. See merit.] http://www.answers.com/topic/meritorious
It's prevalent on the net so it may be a future contender for a dictionary entry.
Agreed. I have never used meritous. I confess that I haven´t seen it on the wondernet, although it may be creeping into the language. We are often told that English is a fluid, growing thingy etc (yawn), and it seems that many new words are allowed to creep in.
It may be worth mentioning meretricious (adj). Some folk fall into a false-friend trap with it. It has nothing to do with merit, deserving, earning and so on. Look it up.
I am a crusty old pedant, I know, and I love it.
^ If frequent use of a 'word' on the internet is used as a criterion for putting it into a dictionary then god help the language.
While we're at it, how about 'definatly'?
"Meritous" is a common legal term which you may often hear in the context of a "meritous claim," that is, a claim having merit. The reason you don't see it in a common dictionary is because it is a legal term. Likewise, there are many scientific words you might find in your biology or psychology textbook that don't appear in the dictionary, even though they are real words.
I have't run across the legal term 'meritous.' However, if a jumble of words does make it to the status of a word, well then, congratulations. All words are made up anyway. Each one is an agreement of sorts, of form, meaning, usage. We can make new agreements about new sets of letters.
Language constantly evolves, devoles, changes, morphs and transforms.
Why not let it?
"Goddamn it Lord, bless oh ye this bacon..."
George Liquor American
Maybe one day it'll reach a point where that makes sense.Language constantly devoles.
Personally I hope not.
Assuming you mean 'devolve', I wonder which of these meanings you intend:
devolve - definition of devolve by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.
deˇvolve (d-vlv)v. deˇvolved, deˇvolvˇing, deˇvolves
v.tr.1. To pass on or delegate to another: The senator devolved the duties of office upon a group of aides.
2. Archaic To cause to roll onward or downward.
v.intr.1. To be passed on or transferred to another: The burden of proof devolved upon the defendant. The estate devolved to an unlikely heir.
2. To degenerate or deteriorate gradually: After several hours the discussion had devolved into a shouting match.
3. Archaic To roll onward or downward.
Actually if the North American colony wants to have it's own language...then by all means do so...but don't call it English...perhaps we could run a post on suitable names for the langage our American friends use
Cyrille in America: 'Can I see the menu, please?'
Waitress: 'Wow, some accent. Where you guys from? How come you speak such good English?'
Cyrille: 'I'm from England'.
Waitress: 'Oh right! So how come you speak such good English?'
...many a true word spoken in jest