[Ads-l] which its = "whose"

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Sat Feb 20 09:34:27 EST 2021


It's been several years, so here's another. Note that the writer is
otherwise college competent (I just made that up). Note too the singular
"its" with a plural antecedent.

Quora.com:

"PTSD... is exceptionally common in battles which its end is unclear (that
is why WWI trench warfare was the primary reason for widespread PTSD
patients)."

JL

On Mon, Jun 16, 2014 at 10:50 AM Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      Re: which its = "whose"
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Yes, "that its."  Heard frequently, rarely seen in a student theme.
>
> But I'm mostly talking about twenty-five years ago and more.
>
> That other thing too - though not in writing that I can specifically
> recall.
>
> Does it have a name?
>
> Or is it the Grammatically Nameless?
>
> JL
>
> JL
>
>
> On Mon, Jun 16, 2014 at 9:38 AM, 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: which its = "whose"
> >
> >
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> >
> > I believe we've discussed "thats" here (I prefer the spelling without
> > apostrophe; always hard to decide when the alternatives are all
> officially
> > ruled out) in the past, and there may have also been blog posts on
> Language
> > Log, Arnold's blog, or elsewhere.  It's a lot more common than you might
> > think.  There is also, of course, the resumptive pronoun version, also
> > officially ungrammatical but not unheard of:  "an idea that its time has
> > come" or, more likely, "the guy that you were dancing with her girlfriend
> > last night".
> >
> > LH
> >
> > On Jun 16, 2014, at 8:58 AM, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
> >
> > > I clearly recall a "that's" or two in a student theme, but only from
> one
> > > student. It was almost precisely thirty years ago.
> > >
> > > However, when pressed to fill in the blank in "This is an idea _______
> > time
> > > has come," a number of students used "that's".  (ISTR that "whose"
> > > responses were only a notable minority.)
> > >
> > > Ordinarily, I think they'd avoid the construction entirely.
> > >
> > > JL
> > >
> > >
> > > On Mon, Jun 16, 2014 at 8:45 AM, Amy West <medievalist at w-sts.com>
> wrote:
> > >
> > >> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > >> -----------------------
> > >> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> > >> Poster:       Amy West <medievalist at W-STS.COM>
> > >> Subject:      Re: which its = "whose"
> > >>
> > >>
> >
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> > >>
> > >> Because I'm Commander Obvious, is there thinking that this
> construction
> > >> is influenced by the dictum to use "who" only for referents that are
> > >> persons? Are you seeing any "that's"?
> > >>
> > >> ---Amy West
> > >>
> > >> (I will confess to preferring "who" over "that" for the relative pron.
> > >> for persons just as a point of style, AND further confess to making
> that
> > >> comment on students' papers, but I do note that it's a point of style,
> > >> not "grammar.")
> > >>
> > >> On 6/14/14, 12:03 AM, Automatic digest processor wrote:
> > >>> Date:    Fri, 13 Jun 2014 13:36:15 -0400
> > >>> From:    Jonathan Lighter<wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> > >>> Subject: which its = "whose"
> > >>>
> > >>> Long ago I mentioned the difficulty even  grad students in English
> had
> > 30
> > >>> years ago with "whose" as a subordinating conjunction after something
> > not
> > >>> human, as in "an idea whose time has come." (Some online grammarians
> > now
> > >>> prefer the counter-rational "subordinate conjunction." Right.)
> > >>>
> > >>> One of the grotesque conjunctions the studes used was "which's."
> >  Another
> > >>> was the perhaps genetically identical "which its."
> > >>>
> > >>> Now grownups use it:
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>
> >
> http://cnn.org/2014/06/11/opinion/ben-ghiat-world-war-one/index.html?iid=article_sidebar
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> "the Submarine was introduced in the 19th Century by the French
> called
> > >> the
> > >>> Plongeur, Which its designs were used by the Confederates to build
> the
> > >> H.L.
> > >>> Hunley"
> > >>>
> > >>> JL
> > >>
> > >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > >> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > >>
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > --
> > > "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the
> > truth."
> > >
> > > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> >
>
>
>
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>


-- 
"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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