Take

Use this forum to suggest Good Words for Professor Beard.
David Myer
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Take

Postby David Myer » Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:29 pm

I was pondering this morning on my walk with the dog about the word 'caretaker'. I think Americans use a different word (is it janitor?) for the English word meaning a person who looks after a building or property and usually lives on the premises. Often the major role is security outside of operation hours.

But then, if 'take' is the opposite of 'give', a care giver (sometimes called a carer) suggests that a caretaker is the recipient of care - a caree, if you like. But he or she is not.

And if we advise people to take care, we are really advising them to give care (albeit to themselves).

So in these circumstances take and give mean the same thing.

Help!

Perry Lassiter
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Re: Take

Postby Perry Lassiter » Thu Oct 25, 2018 10:11 pm

Thumbing through my list of foreign languages here...
pl

Audiendus
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Re: Take

Postby Audiendus » Fri Oct 26, 2018 10:48 pm

David Myer wrote:But then, if 'take' is the opposite of 'give', a care giver (sometimes called a carer) suggests that a caretaker is the recipient of care - a caree, if you like. But he or she is not.

I think we have two different senses of 'care' here. To take care is to take on a burden (responsibility or attention), but to give care is to provide a benefit (help or concern for someone).

And if we advise people to take care, we are really advising them to give care (albeit to themselves).

Yes, but in the 'burden' (not the 'benefit') sense.

In general, if you 'take' a thing, you 'give it to yourself' (i.e. take possession of it). So if you 'take' care, you then 'have' care. Some languages use the verb 'have' here, instead of 'take'. E.g. in Spanish 'take care' (= 'be careful') is tener cuidado (literally 'have care').

David Myer
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Posts: 175
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 3:21 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Take

Postby David Myer » Sun Nov 11, 2018 9:19 pm

Enlightening suggestions, Audiendus. Thank you.

Interestingly and as an aside, 'have care' is used also in regional England. I was visiting a rural part of central England and ordered a pint of local beer in a pub. While he was pulling it, the publican said with a wonderful rolling local accent "Have a care; she's a powerful drop". His advice was needed, because it was indeed very powerful.


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