I love youse guys

In tribute to all those Quorans who have given me insight and entertainment and community. Jimmy Liu (gone but never forgotten), Michael Masiello (magister optimus), Robert Todd (elegentiae arbiter), Lyonel Perabo (skis grow out of his shoes), Zeibura S. Kathau (no goddamn amateur), Lara Novakov (#freelaranole), Aziz Dida (asker of neighbourly questions), Philip Newton (my Quora mentor), Joachim Pense (maintainer of standards), Sam Morningstar (knows more than a thing or two), Dan Holliday (the US Jimmy Liu), Brian Collins (get down here soon!), Dimitris Almyrantis (erudite gadfly), Dimitra Triantafyllidou (my northern counterweight), Eleftherios V. Tserkezis (scholar and gentleman).

And all those who’ve been omitted because they’ve been relatively silent lately, or that I’m yet to get to know.

I love youse guys.

Why is “then” deictic?

No reference needed further than the Wikipedia definition:


words and phrases, such as “me” or “here”, that cannot be fully understood without additional contextual information — in this case, the identity of the speaker (“me”) and the speaker’s location (“here”). Words are deictic if their semantic meaning is fixed but their denotational meaning varies depending on time and/or place. Words or phrases that require contextual information to convey any meaning – for example, English pronouns – are deictic.

then is anaphoric, but it is also deictic: the time that it refers to depends on the time that the speaker is speaking. You could argue that its reference is fixed if it is a historical narrative: “Caesar crossed the Rubicon. Then he began the Roman civil war”—refers to 49 BC whether spoken in 2000 or 2050. But in “I will eat, and then I will go to bed”, the time of the then is quite different depending on when the phrase is spoken, because the clause it references itself has its time anchored on the speaker.

If the deictic centre is not fixed but egocentric, then the expression is deictic, even if it’s primarily anaphoric (as then is). The denotational meaning varies depending on time and/or place.

What does your Greek handwriting look like?

Originally Answered:

Can I see a sample of your Greek handwriting?

I could say that I’m capable of writing neater than this, but I’d be lying. Twenty years ago: maybe.

Two texts. For modern monotonic, my favourite song lyric, stixoi.info: Του κάτω κόσμου τα πουλιά. For ancient polytonic, the beginning to the Discourses of Epictetus.

Should turning off comments on your answers be considered poor etiquette on Quora?

Is it poor etiquette? As delineated by Quora’s purpose for the site, no, because they built that feature in, and because the site keeps insisting that it is a Q&A and not a discussion site.

What do I think? What Ben Sinclair said. It’s people’s right to, but I don’t have to like it, and I don’t. Especially the dismissive “if I wanted a discussion, I’d have gone to Reddit” response that I’ve seen from writers like Ernest W. Adams. He’s a great writer, but if he’s not interested in a two-way exchange on any of his answers—well, I’ve increasingly lost interest in engaging with him one-way. Yes, it’s his right to block comments, and yes, Quora is happy for him to. And it’s my right to view it poorly, and “go hang out on Reddit then” is not a meaningful response to that.

See also

Does the study of language have an -ology word, or is it simply linguistics?

The study of language has an -ology word in Greek (unsurprisingly enough): γλωσσολογία /ɣlosoloɣia/, “language-ology”. Italian uses the more Attic version sometimes as well: glottologia.

Beyond those, yeah, linguistics.