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Thread: Sortie


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    #1

    Sortie

    Do you write "To check the LAY or LIE of the land." ?

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Sortie

    Quote Originally Posted by scripto View Post
    Do you write "To check the LAY or LIE of the land." ?
    Lay

  2. curmudgeon's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Sortie

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    Lay
    I think its lie.

    For instance you could be asked; "go and see how the land lies'

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    #4

    Re: Sortie

    That's a different form, though, you check 'the lay of the land' in my book.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Sortie

    Quote Originally Posted by curmudgeon View Post
    I think its lie.

    For instance you could be asked; "go and see how the land lies'
    Sorry, but I disagree. "Lie of the land" and "lay of the land" are both used, but "lay" is far more common.

  4. curmudgeon's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Sortie

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    Sorry, but I disagree. "Lie of the land" and "lay of the land" are both used, but "lay" is far more common.

    Kenneth G. Wilson (1923–). The Columbia Guide to Standard American English. 1993.

    lie of the land, lay of the land


    Both locutions are Standard, meaning “the way things are literally or figuratively positioned with respect to other things,” as in As soon as we get a look at the lie [lay] of the land, we’ll decide what to do next.


    'Lie' is more common in Britain, never heard anyone say 'Lay in that context

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    #7

    Re: Sortie

    I'm a BrE speaker and I use 'the lay'- maybe it's regional.

  5. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Sortie

    Quote Originally Posted by curmudgeon View Post
    Kenneth G. Wilson (1923–). The Columbia Guide to Standard American English. 1993.

    lie of the land, lay of the land


    Both locutions are Standard, meaning “the way things are literally or figuratively positioned with respect to other things,” as in As soon as we get a look at the lie [lay] of the land, we’ll decide what to do next.


    'Lie' is more common in Britain, never heard anyone say 'Lay in that context
    Perhaps "lie" is more common in Britain, bit it isn't here.

    Web Results 1 - 10 of about 150,000 for "lie of the land".

    Web Results 1 - 10 of about 716,000 for "lay of the land".

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    #9

    Re: Sortie

    Well, I give in, I had a conversation with a (english) friend regarding this. She said she would pronounce it 'lie' but write it 'lay' !

    I'm scots so maybe its a regional thing, it just seems natural to me to say 'lie'

    Bob Dylan: Lie lady lie, lie across my big brass bed

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    #10

    Re: Sortie

    Well, that's all cleared up, er...

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