LINGUIST List 2.566

Fri 27 Sep 1991

Disc: Washing

Editor for this issue: <>


Directory

  1. , it needs V-ing
  2. Dennis Baron, needs washed
  3. "Norval Smith, Re: it needs washed
  4. David Adger, needs
  5. marti wessels, It needs washed
  6. "Randy J. LaPolla", Re: 2.555 It needs washed

Message 1: it needs V-ing

Date: 25 September 91, 17:50:00 EDT
From: <R12040.at.UQAMtamvm1.tamu.edu>
Subject: it needs V-ing
> Joe Stemberger <STEMBERGER%ELLVAXvx.acs.umn.edu>
> noted: "What's completely ungrammatical is "It needs washing""
This will be one of many replies to the effect that, as for Joe's
statement, it needs amending. [IT + needs + V-ing] works just fine
for me.
Harry Whitaker
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Message 2: needs washed

Date: Wed, 25 Sep 91 12:13:03 CDT
From: Dennis Baron <baronux1.cso.uiuc.edu>
Subject: needs washed
Needs +pp is certainly a common construction for students of
American dialects. It is often said to be influenced by
Pennsylvania German, though Laurie Bauer's comment on its
use in Scots suggests broader support for the form.
I myself have noticed, from watching _The New Yankee Workshop_
on PBS, a related idiom: _it wants to be_, for example, "The
angle of the blade wants to be about 5 degrees." And an aside:
my two year old son, who is more addicted to Norm Abrams than
I am, has started to pronounce such words as chair and
t-square with Norm's Boston vowels and r-lessness.
--
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Message 3: Re: it needs washed

Date: Thu, 26 Sep 91 10:32 MET
From: "Norval Smith <NSMITHalf.let.uva.nl>
Subject: Re: it needs washed
"it needs washed" is my dialect too - from Glasgow, Scotland. As Laurie Bauer
says it's general Scottish Standard English, as against English English where
they say "it needs washing". In substandard London English - which is taking
over in Southern England, they can also say "do you need it washing" as against
Standard (Scottish and English) English "do you need it washed". As
Pennsylvania is the part of the US with the greatest number of Scottish speech
phenomena, I'd guess that the usage in Pennsylvania is a reflection of the
Scottish usage.
Norval Smith
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Message 4: needs

Date: Thu, 26 Sep 91 13:22:46 BST
From: David Adger <adgercogsci.edinburgh.ac.uk>
Subject: needs
My dialect (Standard Scottish English) has "needs washed" and would
star "needs washing". This is one of the most obvious syntactic
differences between standard Scottish English, and standard Southern
British English. Perhaps the distribution of the past participial form
with "needs" in the USA comes from immigration patterns.
Northern English English also has a construction "wants washing"
meaning (as far as I can tell) the same as "needs washing". "wants
washed" under the intended reading is out in my dialect. Do you get
"wants washed/washing" in the USA?
David
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Message 5: It needs washed

Date: Thu, 26 Sep 91 15:19 PDT
From: marti wessels <IZZYBR4UCLAMVS.BITNET>
Subject: It needs washed
I am a native of Southern California, who spent much time in eastern Texas as a
child (my father is a native Texan). I personally find "...needs V-ed" quite
strange. However, my husband, who was born and lived until age 20 in the south
eastern part of Iowa, uses this form as a matter of course. I didn't recall
ever having heard it until we were married. I prefer "...needs V-ing" or "...
needs to be V-ed"
Marti Wessels
UCLA
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Message 6: Re: 2.555 It needs washed

Date: Fri, 27 Sep 91 09:36 U
From: "Randy J. LaPolla" <HSLAPOLLATWNAS886.BITNET>
Subject: Re: 2.555 It needs washed
In terms of the geographic limits of "It needs washed" vs. "It needs washing",
the former is ungrammatical in "downstate" New York (NY City, Long Island),
while the latter is quite normal (are these two mutually exclusive in all
dialects?). I also lived in California (Berkeley) for seven years, and don't
remember ever hearing the "It needs washed" construction. (I think
I would have noticed such an abuse of the King's English had I heard it.)
--Randy LaPolla
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