Subject: Re: English in NetBSD (Re: CVS commit: src/usr.bin/mklocale)
To: Jaka Jejcic <>
From: Greg 'groggy' Lehey <>
List: current-users
Date: 05/08/2003 11:16:25
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On Tuesday,  6 May 2003 at 17:07:15 +0200, Jaka Jejcic wrote:
> On Tue, May 06, 2003 at 04:28:36PM +0200, Reinier Jonker wrote:
>> And considering the comma, I'm a 100% certain that placing a comma
>> before "and" in Dutch is a grammatical error. I'm not entirely sure if
>> that's the case in English as well, but I think it probably is. It
>> doesn't seem logical to me, since 'and' effectively replaces the comma.
>> (Actually, it's the other way round. In Latin, where no comma exists,
>> "and" was placed between all members of the list)
> It is also illegal to put a comma before 'and' in Slovene. (Excluding
> some special cases where comma must be placed regardles of the next word
> - that is 'and' in this case)

It's interesting to note that a lot of punctuation rules in British
English are closer to other European languages than are the American
equivalents.  But you can't rely on it.  One of my favourites is the
difference between:

  The -current users who were interested in punctuation discussed the
  matter for weeks


  The -current users, who were interested in punctuation, discussed
  the matter for weeks

In spoken English, these two sentences are spoken differently.  In
German this distinction doesn't take place; the commas are obligatory,
and you have to phrase the sentence differently ("those users" instead
of "the users").

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