April 13th, 2019

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From David Crystal’s Making Sense (a popular book about English grammar):

At the same time, I learned that nouns, adjectives and pronouns also had sets of word-endings, called cases, each expressing a grammatical relationship. Case comes from casus in Latin, which had a wide range of meanings, such as ‘fall’ and ‘accident’; so in using this word to describe nouns, grammarians seem to have thought of the different forms of a noun as ‘falling away’ from the basic form. As with verbs, the noun inflections were organized into tables, and these too had to be painstakingly learned. I remember calling these noun tables conjugations, and being told off because they were declensions.

I too remember how confused I was by the words склонение and спряжение, and how the word падеж was as etymologically opaque to me as word case must now be to English-speakers.

He continues, describing along the way how accusative was a Latin mistranslation from Greek; Not sure about the genitive:

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This tweet is a quote from this article:



Taken by itself (and even in the context of the article), it makes zero sense. What does "open disdain to CSS and HTML" even mean? There is no other way to style content of a web page but with CSS. There is no other way to put content on a web page except with HTML. Does he mean disdain for simple non-interactive pages? Does he mean disdain for web developers who don't write javascript? Does he mean neglect to properly learn HTML and CSS? What?