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10

I don't think "it" refers to anything here. "It's too cute" is an idiomatic expression comparable to "It's raining" or "It's time for dinner"--in both of which the "it" is a nonreferential or dummy pronoun.


2

You don't have a word for "it" in French because the concept of a non-gendered noun does not exist in French (as far as I know). When you use a pronoun in place of a noun in French, the noun it references is gendered. Nouns in English are not gendered, so we don't have distinctly masculine or feminine pronouns. The word "it" is simply a pronoun which refers ...


16

Either. An animal of unknown gender is it. Look at the cat, it's so cute. Look at what the cat does. It's the cutest thing I have seen. Look at the picture, it's cute. The translations would be It is too cute (the cat, any gender) and It is too cute (the situation). You can use This/That is too cute to emphasize the situation though.


2

English borrowed estrange (the adjective) from the French in the 13th century. This was early enough that it lost the initial 'e', like strive, strait, strap, strife, stable (from estriver, estrait, estrop, estrif, estable, all borrowed mid-14th century or earlier). The verb estrange was borrowed in the late 15th century, after the adjective strange had ...


1

While "Strange" is an ADJECTIVE, "Estrange" is a VERB. Both words are required, so both have been adopted (or adapted) into English. Otherwise, some new word(s) would have been required for the verb form. Consider the word Cactus from latin. It was borrowed together with the plural form cacti, but some folks use cactuses, which is a "new" word formed with ...


0

Well, someone with some status (def 3) frequently owned land (def 1) in times past. I don't see the transition being that difficult.


5

Each of the four definitions "radiates" out from the original idea of plek- "to plait, twist". If you have ever observed a person spinning thread, weaving cloth, or making a woven basket, you know that it can be meticulous, slow, and repetitious work: The individual elements need to be aligned properly. Each element must be interconnected with the ...



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