阿傑
Lv 5
阿傑 asked in 社會與文化語言 · 1 decade ago

很難的英文單字一問

請問語言專家,為什麼「四十」的英文是「forty」,而不是「fourty」呢?

Update:

謝謝,程度沒那麼好,看不太懂……希望能有比較好的中文翻譯…

2 Answers

Rating
  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Hi, I tried to find and locate an answer to this. However, of the sites that I visited, the following is the best answer. Hope this help.

    Date: 3/30/96 at 17:22:8

    From: Doctor Sarah

    Subject: Re: Spelling of forty

    Hello there -

    Trying to figure out why something is spelled the way it is in

    English is often frustrating. :-) Spelling didn't become very

    'stable' until well after the time of Shakespeare; if your 7th

    and 8th graders haven't seen Shakespearean spelling yet, it might

    be an eye-opener for them.

    A better question to ask of a good etymological dictionary like

    Webster's Second International might be where the words four and

    forty come from. My dictionary says this:

    ME. is Middle English, the language of England between about

    1100 and 1500 A.D.

    AS. is Anglo-Saxon, the language of the Saxon tribes that invaded

    England in the 5th and 6th centuries - from about 600 A.D.

    OS. is Old Saxon, the language of the original Saxon tribes of

    northwest Germany between the Rhine and the Elbe rivers.

    forty: ME. forti, fourti, fowerti, from AS. feowertig;

    akin to OS. fiwartig, fiartig

    four: ME. four, fower, feower, from AS. feower;

    akin to OS. fiwar

    So four and forty were different words starting a long time ago but

    were spelled with the same beginning in Old Saxon and Anglo-Saxon

    and part of Middle English. Somewhere along the way during the

    Middle English era the simpler spelling of forty took hold and has continued ever since.

    Of course it was easier to change spellings before there were

    dictionaries and teachers paying close attention to your spelling.

    :-)

    It's interesting to notice the British spellings of words like

    humour and labour, etc., which are spelled humor and labor in

    the United States.

    I hope this helps answer your students' question.

    -Doctor Sarah, The Math Forum

    Source(s): a Taiwanese American
  • 1 decade ago

    我一直記得高中老師說過,forty是美國用法~fourty是英國用法...希望他沒騙我。

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