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Picture of shufitz
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Tinman has given me a gentle ribbing for using "office" as a verb, when I said, "I office on the 13th floor." The usage sounds fine to my ear, but on checking the dictionary I see that Tinman is right: "office" is not listed as a verb (except in a different, obsolete sense).¹

Is there a name for such a use of a noun as if it were a verb? Perhaps "verbification" or "to verbify"?

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¹However, wink you can find on-line instances of that verb-usage, as in §1320A of the Oklahoma statutes regard bail bondsmen: "he shall provide the court clerk with proof that he is a resident of said county or that he offices in said county."
 
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Is there a name for such a use of a noun as if it were a verb?


Ummmm....(ducking) Wrong? (really ducking!) wink
 
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Second question: What prompts verbifying?

In this particular case, unless you verbify you are forced to use either the passive voice ("My office is on … ") or a weak verb ("I have my office on …"). I By verbifying you can speak with an active verb ("I office on …"). Might this be the typical prod that leads to verbifying?

Interestingly, if one were locating a home or a retail sales outlet, rather than an office, it would be perfectly permissible name it with a verb ("I sell from …" or "I reside at …").
 
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<Asa Lovejoy>
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Might you not say that you officiate on the 13th floor?
 
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Calvin, (of Calvin and Hobbes): "I like to verb words."

Hobbes: "What?"

Calvin: ""I take nouns and adjectives and use them as verbs. Remember when 'access' was a thing? Now it's something to do. It got verbed. Verbing weirds language".

Hobbes: "Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding."

http://www.henriettahay.com/language/00jul14.htm

http://www.henriettahay.com/language.htm

http://swankivy.envy.nu/verbing.html

The entries on this last site are facetious.

Tinman
 
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How about "I work on the 13th floor"?
 
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The verbing of America
Is getting out of hand,
Yet many nouns are also verbs,
Like toast and rake and land.
When I first heard hospitalize,
I thought it was a crime;
Why don't we apartmentalize?
We will -- just give us time!
If when we change a noun to verb
To come up with our `verbing,'
Why can't I, when I'm using herbs,
Refer to it as herbing?
For if I call myself a cook
, The verbal form is cooking;
And if I give someone a look,
It's also known as looking.
I give a gift
But I'm not gifting.
You get my drift,
Or am I drifting?
I get a bill
Because of billing,
But taking pills
Is never pilling.
I place a pin,
And I am pinning.
Play a violin --
Is it violining?
But play a fiddle,
And you're fiddling;
Or is this getting
Much too piddling?
Planting some seeds
Is always seeding,
And pulling weeds
Is surely weeding;
If drawing blood
Is always bleeding,
Why does a flood
Not lead to fleeding?
I'm wined and dined
But never beered.
I've eyed someone,
But never eared!
Turn on a light,
And I am lighting.
Turn on a lamp,
And it's not lamping.
If I can verbalize
A needle,
And egging on
Can mean to wheedle,
And I am doodling
With a doodle,
When I cook pasta,
Can't I noodle?
With all these punctuation marks,
I'm doing quite a lot of dotting;
But if I were to use a dash --
Don't you agree that I am dashing?
But comma-ing and period-ing?
And yet I can italicize
And sometimes must capitalize.
I Anglicize -- but Germanicize?
Or Swedicize, or Gaelicize?
With this I could go on and on,
Really ad infinitum;
Whether I lick these word problems,
I sure cannot beat 'em.
Our language is an enigma
In how its words are used;
And that is why, in verbing nouns,
We ought to be excused.

Thanks to Jessica Kestner, who found this in St. Paul Pioneer Press
 
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Thank you for my laugh of the day, Arnie. (Big Kiss)
 
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I have already made this point elswhere - in English there are no nouns that cannot be verbed!

Richard English
 
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Changing the subject a bit. Annie quotes,

With this I could go on and on, / Really ad infinitum;
Whether I lick these word problems, / I sure cannot beat 'em.


Obviously, arnie, you pronounce the penultimate syllable of "infinitum" as a long e. I pronounce it as a long i. I wondered if this could be another Britspeak-vs-USspeak difference, but then came across a british poem with the long-i pronunciation.
quote:
So, naturalists observe, a flea
Has smaller fleas that on him prey;
And these have smaller still to bite ’em;
And so proceed ad infinitum.
-- Jonathan Swift
Can anyone elucidate the difference?
 
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Long "i" or long "e" sound?

I think this has something to do with The Great Vowel Shift (http://www.furman.edu/~mmenzer/gvs/index.htm). I can't understand it well enough to try to explain it. Perhaps Bob or Richard do.

Tinman
 
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I was talking with a friend of mine today. I said I had to add something to my list of things to do today. She said, "you are always listing!" I wanted to ask her, "to the port or starboard side?" It was another of those strange uses of a noun for a verb. Or am I hearing it wrong? confused
 
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¹However, you can find on-line instances of that verb-usage, as in §1320A of the Oklahoma statutes regard bail bondsmen: "he shall provide the court clerk with proof that he is a resident of said county or that he offices in said county."


Somehow I just knew that Shufitz would redeem himself! roll eyes
Just wondering, Shufitz, how long did it take you to find that example? The Oklahoma statutes???
 
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Swift's poem certainly indicates that the word was pronounced "in-fin-eye-tum", but if I were parsing it in school I'd say "in-fin-it-um". The poem I posted comes from your side of the pond, St Paul, so it's not a Brit-USA thing. My guess is "poetic licence".
 
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This is an old thread to revive!

We've talked about verbifying words here, including in this thread. I had not heard moot used as a verb before, have you? The sentence I read was about attorneys "mooting" before each other to practice for court. But then I found some other interesting uses of it, like "Egypt has been mooting a high-speed rail project to link..." or "...confrontation that has stoked fear of a new Middle East war, with Israel mooting last-resort air strikes...." I bet you like those, arnie! Wink
 
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"Egypt has been mooting a high-speed rail project to link..."

That's fine by me.


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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I thought Mu Ting was a Chinese guy of little significance.
 
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The "raise a point" meaning has been a verb for quite a while.

1685 tr. B. Gracián y Morales Courtiers Oracle 253 Politicians now a-days moot nothing else, but that the greatest Wisedom consists in making it appear.
 
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Oh, that's a nice one to add to the piggy bank-- I gather 'mooting' is what I would call 'floating an idea'?
 
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I've even heard (mostly during newscasts)that "So--and-so is mooted to be doing such-and-such...' so it's not an unknown usage.


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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It's obviously a hot thing if there are so many ways to refer to it: verbing (Calvin & Hobbes), verbifying (this thread), and denominal verbs (the term used by grammarians). Verbing is probably the best one because verb itself is a noun that has been verbed.

I, personally, like office as a verb.


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
 
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I, personally, like office as a verb.
Ah, yes - the original topic of this thread way back in 2002.

[Edited typo]

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Kalleh,
 
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Verbing is probably the best one because verb itself is a noun that has been verbed.

I prefer "verbing" myself. It's also more succinct. "Verbifying" seems rather too florid a word for me. Similarly, I prefer "burgle" to "burglarise". Also I like Calvin and Hobbes. Wink


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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Originally posted by arnie:
Also I like Calvin and Hobbes. Wink

That shows your very good taste. Only the best comic strip of all time! But I have never understood how Thomas Hobbes and John Calvin reflect the traits of the strip's characters, other than Calvin's sometimes being fanatical in his attitude.
 
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