Am

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Dr. Goodword
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Am

Postby Dr. Goodword » Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:09 pm

• am •


Pronunciation: æm • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Verb, auxiliary

Meaning: First person singular of be. 1. To be identical with, as "I am Dr. Goodword." 2. To exist, as "I think, therefore. I am." 3. Used with participles to indicate aspect, (a) imperfective, "I am running," and (b) perfective: "I am done."

Notes: This auxiliary is usually contracted to 'm, as 'I'm OK,' but when we extend such statements, we use the second person contraction, 'I'm OK, aren't I?' We would never say, 'I aren't OK'. This is because the contraction of am is ain't.

In Play: In parts of Scotland, the contraction of am not is still amn't. But English outside Scotland tolerates the cluster MN only before vowels, e.g. amniotic, amnesia, but hymn, autumn, column. So, when amn't came to be pronounced [amt], the labial M assimilated to dental N before dental T, hence ain't. However, when speakers misused ain't with you, he, she, and it, ain't became demonized rather than have its usage corrected.

Word History: In many Indo-European languages the 1st person singular of the auxiliary verb meaning "be" contains an M: Latin sum, Armenian am, Albanian jam, Russian esm', Serbian (je)sam, and Sanskrit asmi. The best guess is that the Proto-Indo-European word was esmi, and the present tense root for "be" was es-. The past tense root was bheu-, accounting for be and been. Es-t- "is" ended up as is in English, ist in German, est in Latin and French, es in Spanish, and je(st) in Serbian. (After all the long Good Words, Janet Ann Collins thought a short one might be interesting today. She was right, don't you think?)
• The Good Dr. Goodword

Philip Hudson
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Re: Am

Postby Philip Hudson » Wed Mar 04, 2020 12:13 am

God is the Great I am. Jesus also identified himself with God by saying he was the I am.
It is dark at night, but the Sun will come up and then we can see.

David Myer
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Re: Am

Postby David Myer » Wed Mar 04, 2020 8:36 pm

The great I am.

Hmm. In Australia (and it may not be unique to here) we had a senior businessman with an over-inflated ego. He was known as Fig Jam - an acronym for "Fxxk I'm great. Just ask me". I wonder if the concept was created here or is widely used elsewhere as well?

misterdoe
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Re: Am

Postby misterdoe » Fri Mar 27, 2020 2:45 pm

The great I am.

Hmm. In Australia (and it may not be unique to here) we had a senior businessman with an over-inflated ego. He was known as Fig Jam - an acronym for "Fxxk I'm great. Just ask me". I wonder if the concept was created here or is widely used elsewhere as well?
I've actually heard that phrase in a context that made it clear it was not about food, but I had no clue where it came from or what it meant. Not widely used.

damoge
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Re: Am

Postby damoge » Sat Mar 28, 2020 11:32 am

Agree, not widely used. I'd never heard it, and without the explanation would never have understood that to be the meaning, but in my country (USA) it should be spreading far and wide.
I intend to do my part to increase its use.
Everything works out, one way or another


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