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Questions tagged [subcontinental-english]

Questions related to the English language as it is spoken and written across the Indian Subcontinent in the South-Asian countries of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

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'Too good': Hyperbole, fossil, calque, quirk, something else?

I often hear the exclamation "too good" in Indian English. Sometimes it describes food, sometimes music, sometimes an event, anything really; it's rather versatile, common enough to have ...
Heartspring's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
468 views

When was the term Godi Media coined?

When was the term Godi Media coined? I know that godi means lap so, it kind of means 'lapdog media'. It is been used very frequently in India to describe the media supporting the ruling government. ...
Free Palestine's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
228 views

What could be the origin of 'cherry-merry' in Indian English to mean 'baksheesh'?

I was looking through a book about Indian English (Sahibs, Nabobs, and Boxwallahs: A Dictionary of the Words of Anglo-India) and I noticed the following definition (edited lightly): Cherry-merry: ...
Heartspring's user avatar
  • 8,620
21 votes
4 answers
4k views

In Indian English, did the word 'griffin' ever mean newcomer or novice?

I recently came across a definition in the dictionary Hobson-Jobson. It's basically a big collection of English words and anglicizations used or found in India. The entry that's been stumping me is ...
Florian's user avatar
  • 313
14 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why was the Sanskrit word "laksha" anglicized to "lakh"?

This is something that I have been wondering about for a while, and I thought that I could ask about it here. I am unsure about whether this is strictly "on-topic" because it may be only ...
S. Kotenath's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
1k views

Etymology of the word 'cheatercock'

There's a word used in India, 'cheatercock.' Wiktionary defines a 'cheatercock' as (India) Someone who violates rules in order to gain an advantage; a cheater. There are a few hits online, mostly in ...
Heartspring's user avatar
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3 votes
0 answers
108 views

Where does the subcontinental usage of 'one' to mean 'named' come from?

Sometimes, when reading texts published in India, written by authors of Indian origin, I notice a usage of the word one in the sense of 'named,' or 'is called.' For instance, it's present in this ...
Heartspring's user avatar
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4 votes
3 answers
858 views

The meaning of "come home"

In India, when I ask a friend to "come home", it often means I am inviting the friend to my home. I am told that this is different in England or the US, where native speakers would use "...
Mohan Sivanand's user avatar
23 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why do South Indians call restaurants 'hotels'?

In South India, it's common to use the word 'hotel' when referring to what North Indians (and most of the rest of the world) know as a 'restaurant.' It's not just a phenomenon seen among small, micro-...
Heartspring's user avatar
  • 8,620
0 votes
1 answer
88 views

What's the correct way to write our names? [closed]

Most people who live in my locality write their names with initials at the end. Usually these initials are abbreviations of long family names, like Joseph Alex TP, where TP stands for ...
Hari S's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
377 views

Indian English language prepositions [closed]

What is difference between preposition here (In and To)? Why we use : Israel ambassador to India. Why don't we use : Israel ambassador in India.
romil's user avatar
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1 answer
96 views

Possible reading of a visually obscured word used in Indian newspaper from 1876

I am going through old English speaking newspapers and found the following from a newspaper called "THE PIONEER" that was published in Allahabad, India on August the 11th, 1876: From what I ...
A Dark Divided Gem's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
727 views

Is there a term for when in Indian English stress is placed on the word "the" before a noun?

I often hear speakers of Indian English place stress-accent on the word "the", with a pause before finishing a sentence with a noun. There's a raised pitch and stress on the word "the&...
Yeshua Kin's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
346 views

Why do Indian people usually ask questions in English using the first-person-plural form?

I don't know much about the languages spoken in India, so I'm going to assume the speaker is speaking Hindi natively. I've noticed that whenever a question is asked in an English forum, and it ...
user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
3k views

What's the American or British English equivalent to "take a download from", meaning get to know the information from someone?

In Indian English, we often use the phrase "take a download from" which isn't common outside India or at least South Asia. This phrase means to get to know the information from someone. For ...
Stannis John's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
729 views

Is 'peasant' generally considered derogatory?

Is peasant when used in general to describe a modern socioeconomic class considered to be derogatory? Apparently there is no issue when talking about European history... I read in the Brtitannica ...
Cascabel_StandWithUkraine_'s user avatar
0 votes
4 answers
556 views

Does "tuition classes" mean the same in US English US as it does in Indian English?

I am trying to write a sentence that says how others had the capability to pay for extra classes other than school to get better learning. My peers always had their parents who could pay for tuition ...
Harsh R's user avatar
2 votes
4 answers
719 views

Can Practice (verb) and Practise (verb) indicate two different meanings?

I recall that at school (in the late 1960s/early 1970s) in England I was taught how and when to use Practice and Practise. What I was taught was this: Practice, when used as a verb, means to do ...
Nemo's user avatar
  • 797
5 votes
1 answer
233 views

What is the etymology of the term “creamy layer” in Indian politics?

According to Wikipedia, “creamy layer is a term used in Indian politics to refer to members of a backward class who are highly advanced socially as well as economically and educationally, and not ...
sjy's user avatar
  • 515
1 vote
0 answers
19 views

Is this a valid usage of "forget about" - "X can't afford three meals a day, forget about sanitary living conditions" [duplicate]

I was trying to cobble together a sentence expressing the idea above, that: something doesn't do X, and so, definitely doesn't do Y (which is harder than X). I grew up using ", forget about&...
awreccan's user avatar
  • 113
21 votes
4 answers
4k views

What's the meaning of "wooden loaf", the famous expression used by Gandhi to define the Independence of India?

I came across this expression while reading about the history of Indian Independence. The expression is well known, but I cannot understand its meaning. Does loaf mean piece of bread? But then what is ...
Cicc's user avatar
  • 615
1 vote
1 answer
48 views

What does a "non-cooperate and prepare for civil disobedience" mean in this speech? [closed]

[[26]]Mussalmans are not a minority as it is commonly known and understood. One has only got to look round. Even today, according to the British map of India, out of eleven provinces, four provinces ...
Eloise Zeng's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
112 views

Is it normative to use "even" in the sense of "too", "also"? [duplicate]

My colleagues often use "even" as in "Even I was thinking about that" instead of "I also was thinking about that". This usage seems to be widespread in India. Is it ...
nikita's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
109 views

Use of ‘had’ in Indian English

Soon after she encountered the experience while proceeding to New Delhi, the Thoothukudi MP had tweeted, “Today at the airport a CISF officer asked me if I am an Indian, when I asked her to speak to ...
Virat's user avatar
  • 11
2 votes
1 answer
686 views

Is modern 'five countries' English the only type of English with stress patterns that change across the entire word depending on the suffix?

The capital letters represent where the main stress in each word lies TELephone, telePHONic, teLEphony. PHOTograph, photoGRAphic, photOgraphy. biOLogy, bioLOGical. What about in the past, including ...
Matthew Christopher Bartsh's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
90 views

Placement of infinitive [closed]

How do you expect a debate on the green new deal between Marjorie Taylor Greene and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to go? Or How do you expect a debate on the green new deal to go between Marjorie Taylor ...
Sid's user avatar
  • 91
4 votes
1 answer
2k views

What are the differences between Indian English and other (native) varieties?

From my observation, I can identify some differences. Indian speakers use some Hindi words which are not found among native speakers. Indian speakers pronounce 'w' and 'v' interchangeably. Indian ...
user366312's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
422 views

What is the origin of extra prepositions added after verbs in Indian English?

It seems that speakers of Indian English often add prepositions to create phrasal verbs in situations where the verb would have been sufficient on its own. Some examples I have noticed: to “pass out” ...
hb20007's user avatar
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-1 votes
1 answer
711 views

Origin of the Indian version of the mnemonic for the planets

The most common planetary mnemonic is: My very educated mother just served us nine pizzas Another popular planetary mnemonic is: My very educated mother just showed us nine planets A planetary ...
Arunabh's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
186 views

How can I speak English fluently in 45 days? [closed]

I am new to start learning English. I want to improve my reading, writing & speaking english I have only 45 days to complete this course. Where I start learning. I am searching online for videos, ...
Umesh's user avatar
  • 104
1 vote
1 answer
122 views

Phenomenon, when a phrase (lit. trans. into English from other regional language) has obvious mistake(s) and still uncorrectable due to popularity

Let me layout an example to make the situation, described in question more clear: There is a popular road in a city of Gujarat, India whose name when literally translated into English means "Horse ...
Vicky Dev's user avatar
  • 499
1 vote
0 answers
77 views

Pronunciation of "intermediate" as /ɪntə(ɹ)ˈmiːdʒɪt/?

I've heard both "intermediate" and "immediate" pronounced /ɪntə(ɹ)ˈmiːdʒɪt/ and /ɪˈmiːdʒɪt/ respectively in Indian English. Wiktionary has /ɪˈmiːdʒɪt/ as an alternative pronunciation for immediate for ...
avwv's user avatar
  • 11
-1 votes
2 answers
4k views

What is a "loose character" in Indian English?

What does the phrase "loose character" in Indian English mean? E.g. "He is a loose character", or, "He has a loose character"
Amin Shah Gilani's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is bad English called "Butler English"?

When somebody speaks bad English it is called Butler English in India. The phrase Butler English seems to have originated in Madras presidency in the British Rule. The butlers or the maid servants ...
Jvlnarasimharao's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
22 views

Apostrophes in Grammar [duplicate]

In the sentence- "Jessie's and Nora's dogs are lovely". Do we really have to put apostrophes on both the names?
Arpit Srivastava's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
351 views

Rendezvous with Ray [closed]

Rendezvous is one of the English words whose pronunciation is nothing to do with its spelling .I have come across the word in the lesson Rendezvous with Ray I have understood ...
Jvlnarasimharao's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is “suite” pronounced like “suit” in any native English-speaking countries?

The word suite is pronounced the same as sweet in British and American English. Surprisingly, even some educated Indians mispronounce it almost similar to suit. Even name boards ...
Jvlnarasimharao's user avatar
-2 votes
1 answer
720 views

How far have you understood my lesson? [closed]

As far as I know your answer is correct..I think this statement is correct. How far have you understood my lesson? I am doubtful about the correctness of the sentence.But how ...
Jvlnarasimharao's user avatar
1 vote
4 answers
5k views

She is his would be/ wife to be

In India there is a tendency to call a woman or a man as would be in the sense of his future wife or her future husband. She is his would be ( wife) He is ...
Jvlnarasimharao's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
116 views

Indian - mother tongue influence [closed]

I'm an Indian who has huge mother tongue influence while speaking English. I have to talk to Americans due to my job. I frequently use "like this only" & "like that only" while speaking to ...
Charz 's user avatar
  • 21
4 votes
0 answers
248 views

Where does the phrase "cheater caught, Peter red" come from?

Growing up in Pakistan, I heard variations of either: Cheater caught, Peter red; or Cheater cock, Peter red I assumed it was about a cocky boy named Peter who was either caught red-handed or turned ...
Amin Shah Gilani's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
187 views

They have some background strong

I'm trying to understand the meaning of the expression "background strong". The line in the title is quoted from a movie, "Dying to survive". Here is some frame: an indian oil shop owner wants to ...
Baffo rasta's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
7k views

What's the meaning of "the same" in Indian English [duplicate]

I work in tech, and at the company I work for employs and does business with a lot of Indian businesses and individuals. When exchanging emails, I've been noticing the use of "the same" in a ...
Hu Ti's user avatar
  • 79
-3 votes
1 answer
476 views

I want to check with my account team regarding payment processing, how to ask?

I have to ask one of the account team members, if today they are going to provide payment. How can I ask them, I want to know the correct English sentence? I have prepared some sentences, can ...
Chirag Patel's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
193 views

Meaning of gram-vendor in context

Reading Shame (1983) by Salman Rushdie, and here's such a sentence. For five, six, seven days films played to an empty house in which peeling plaster and slowly rotating ceiling fans and the ...
k-lusine's user avatar
  • 175
0 votes
1 answer
425 views

What is meaning of "Wrestling words into submission"? [closed]

I came across a sentence which goes "I knew I wasn't meant to spend my life locked away in a silent room alone and half-crazed, wrestling words into submission." Can some please tell me what it means?...
Sudhir Nishad's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
543 views

Meaning of "textbook Launch" in given sentence?

In a post-launch address from the Sriharikota launch port, K. Sivan, Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO), hailed the event as a textbook launch of a very important and complex ...
user349217's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
149 views

What does the word "Stone" mean in this context [closed]

A book by Salman Rushdie ("Shame"), Hindu–Islamic tensed relations are described. So there are several words starting/containing the word Stone Stonewasher Stone-gang Stone-godly 'The one-godly ...
k-lusine's user avatar
  • 175
1 vote
3 answers
112 views

Use of 'who' in Indian English [closed]

In both statements, which person is the word 'who' used for? Maya is sister of dhara who is doctor. Maya is sister of dhara, who is doctor.
Krina Tank's user avatar
14 votes
4 answers
5k views

Why is Indian English usually rhotic?

It seems that speakers of Indian English generally speak with a rhotic accent, pronouncing an [r] in all cases where spelled, whereas a speaker of British English would leave it off in postvocalic ...
mic's user avatar
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