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Thread: So long

  1. Nightmare85's Avatar
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    #1

    So long

    Hello,
    I know what "So long" means, but I always wondered why it is like it is.
    Is it something like, "It will take so long to see you again." or what could it be?
    To me it always sounded a bit sad when someone said, "So long.".

    Cheers!

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    #2

    not a teacher

    "So long"--

    --essentially synonymous with "goodbye". Has a connotation of sadness in the same sense that saying goodbye can be associated with sadness. Also has something of a connotation of a longer goodbye or separation.

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    #3

    Re: not a teacher

    Thanks for the question, I wouldn't have checked otherwise:

    Re: So Long
    Re: So Long
    Online Etymology Dictionary

  2. NikkiBarber's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: So long

    Isn't there a similar expression in German? In Danish we say "Farvel saa laenge" which means "Goodbye so long." I seem to remember hearing something like that in German too.
    It is interesting that there are so many theories as to the origin of the phrase.
    I agree that "so long" sounds like it implies a longer separation, but oddly enough it is just the opposite in Danish where people often say it even when they are just sending a child off to school for the day.

  3. Nightmare85's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: So long

    Thank you for your replies.

    Quote Originally Posted by NikkiBarber View Post
    Isn't there a similar expression in German? In Danish we say "Farvel saa laenge" which means "Goodbye so long." I seem to remember hearing something like that in German too.
    Maybe there is and maybe I use it, but right now I'm not sure...

    Cheers!

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: So long

    Quote Originally Posted by NikkiBarber View Post
    Isn't there a similar expression in German? In Danish we say "Farvel saa laenge" which means "Goodbye so long." I seem to remember hearing something like that in German too.
    It is interesting that there are so many theories as to the origin of the phrase.
    I agree that "so long" sounds like it implies a longer separation, but oddly enough it is just the opposite in Danish where people often say it even when they are just sending a child off to school for the day.
    Incidentally, there is in English a fairly archaic word 'Farewell'. Etymologically this means 'have a good journey' (not unlike the French bon voyage). A friend of mine who had lived in Kenya used to say 'Go well' with the same meaning.

    Not many people say 'Farewell' nowadays - except dialectally. Fans of early Bob Dylan songs will have met it in the song Don't think twice, it's all right.

    b

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