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Glory shown around

December 27, 2019

I went to church on Christmas Day, because there is little I like better than belting out carols at the top of my voice. When it came to the reading, there was an innovation: instead of having someone from the congregation read aloud from the lectern, they showed an animated version of the nativity story in Luke on a big screen. An American voice intoned the story over the comings and goings of a cartoon Mary and Joseph, donkeys, shepherds, etc. Well, that’s OK, I don’t have a problem with that. But when it came to the appearance of the angels, the voicec said: ‘And glory shown round about them.’ That’s what he said. Shown.

The reason, of course, is that in American English, the mutated form of the past of shine is no longer used. They say shined, not shone. So for the narrator, this form must have looked like a bit of archaic King James English; and not having ever heard it, he pronounced it, not unreasonably from his point of view, to rhyme with bone. In this instance, American English is more modern than  British English in preferring the regularised form, since irregular verb forms tend to drop out of use over time. (However, the reverse applies when it comes to the past of dive. They say dove, we say dived.)

Here endeth the lesson.

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2 Comments
  1. Simon Carter permalink

    In the film The Sons of Katie Elder the youngest son, Michael Anderson, mentioned a mountain which he had “clumb”. When John Wayne picks you up on your grammar you might suspect an error.
    Almost as bad as the casting director who decided John Wayne and Dean Martin could be brothers.

  2. Deborah Smith permalink

    Love “stuff” like this! xx

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