[Ads-l] "unbeaten" = "once beaten"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Thu Jul 16 14:36:08 UTC 2015


> On Jul 15, 2015, at 11:25 PM, Gordon, Matthew J. <GordonMJ at MISSOURI.EDU> wrote:
> 
> What I meant was that "has won," as both of you suggested, would not be accurate if the record includes a tie, which I assume it does since the reporter chose this phrasing.

Yes; in particular in hockey (and I assume soccer as well) whenever they say a team, for example the Blackhawks, are on a 7 game unbeaten streak (instead of winning streak) there's a clear implicature that there were ties in there.  Or maybe that's no longer the case in pro hockey given the current NHL tiebreak rules, complete with shootouts, and that weird category of "overtime losses" that earn you a point.  Alice Faber, are you still out there lurking?  We need an expert to weigh in.


> As you note, there are other ways of expressing this, but "Jamaica has won 7 of its last 8 Gold Cup matches" is not one of them.

Unless they have.  In which case it might even be "Jamaica have won 7..."  Not sure if the number isogloss cuts through the Atlantic Ocean or between the U.S. and Commonwealth, but I suspect the latter.

LH
> 
> ________________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of Joel Berson [berson at ATT.NET]
> Sent: Wednesday, July 15, 2015 10:04 PM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
> Subject: Re: "unbeaten" = "once beaten"
> 
> If Gordon means "unbeaten in 8, one of which was a draw", that is incorrect.  Panama lost to the USA in the final of the 2013 Gold Cup, and has so far played just 3 matches this year.  (The original said "last eight _Gold Cup_ matches".)
> 
> If Gordon means "unbeaten in 7 of it last 8 Gold Cup matches, one of which was a tie," I still say an odd usage.  "Panama has won or drawn 7 of its last 8 Gold Cup matches"; or "Panama has not lost in 7 of its last 8 ..."; or "Panama has lost only 1 of its last 8 ...".
> 
> Joel
> 
>      From: Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
> Sent: Wednesday, July 15, 2015 6:08 PM
> Subject: Re: [ADS-L] "unbeaten" = "once beaten"
> 
> Touche'.
> 
> But my stylistic point stays valid.
> 
> JL
> 
> On Wed, Jul 15, 2015 at 5:46 PM, Gordon, Matthew J. <GordonMJ at missouri.edu>
> wrote:
> 
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>> -----------------------
>> Sender:      American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:      "Gordon, Matthew J." <GordonMJ at MISSOURI.EDU>
>> Subject:      Re: "unbeaten" = "once beaten"
>> 
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> 
>> I believe "unbeaten" is accurate here since their record includes a draw.
>> 
>> ________________________________________
>> From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of
>> Jonath=
>> an Lighter [wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM]
>> Sent: Wednesday, July 15, 2015 4:40 PM
>> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
>> Subject: Re: "unbeaten" =3D "once beaten"
>> 
>> "has been unbeaten" sounds rougher 'n' tougher than a wimpy "has won," or
>> even "has been victorious."
>> 
>> "Has totally kicked ass," however, will soon be preferred, .
>> 
>> JL
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> On Wed, Jul 15, 2015 at 2:51 PM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu>
>> wrote:
>> 
>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>> -----------------------
>>> Sender:      American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>> Poster:      Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
>>> Subject:      Re: "unbeaten" =3D "once beaten"
>>> 
>>> 
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------=
>> ------
>>> 
>>>> On Jul 15, 2015, at 2:05 PM, Joel Berson <berson at att.net> wrote:
>>>> =3D20
>>>> "Jamaica is unbeaten in seven of its last eight Gold Cup matches ...".
>>>> =3D20
>>>> An equally undefeated team could be "unbeaten in one of its last eight
>> =
>> =3D
>>> matches."
>>>> =3D20
>>>> =3D20
>>>> Presumably "has won" is too simple for an AP correspondent.  [Boston =
>> =3D
>>> Globe, today.]
>>> 
>>> All true, but technically, if "unbeaten" in "unbeaten in 7 of its last 8
>> =
>> =3D
>>> Gold Cup matches" really meant "once beaten", they would be 6-2 rather =
>> =3D
>>> than the (I assume) intended 7-1.
>>> 
>>> Pickily,
>>> LH=3D
>>> 
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> 
> 
> 
> --
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