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  1. #1
    angliholic's Avatar
    angliholic is offline Key Member
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    Smile lay/set the table

    I want you to lay/set the table before I finish cooking.


    Are lay and set interchangeable in the above? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: lay/set the table

    In English North America, only "set the table" would be correct.

    cheers
    edward

    Quote Originally Posted by angliholic View Post
    I want you to lay/set the table before I finish cooking.


    Are lay and set interchangeable in the above? Thanks.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: lay/set the table

    Thanks, Edward.
    Got it.

  4. #4
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: lay/set the table

    Quote Originally Posted by baqarah131 View Post
    In English North America, only "set the table" would be correct.

    cheers
    edward
    But in BE, 'lay' is equally admissible. Incidentally, though, one set of cutlery laid out is called a 'setting' (not a laying)]

    I've heard people (native speakers of English) working in fast-food outlets using another verb:'put the table'. But this is certainly not colloquial in any dialect of English I've ever heard; I presume it's Hispanic in origin, from the expression 'poner la mesa'.

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 13-Dec-2007 at 14:30. Reason: Added parenthesis in last para

  5. #5
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    Default Re: lay/set the table

    Thanks, Bob.
    Got it!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: lay/set the table

    This is interesting to me, as an Anglo.
    "Lay" may be falling into disuse in this sort of context, in Canada and USA, because it has acquired a sexual meaning.

    thanx
    edward

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    But in BE, 'lay' is equally admissible. Incidentally, though, one set of cutlery laid out is called a 'setting' (not a laying)]

    I've heard people (native speakers of English) working in fast-food outlets using another verb:'put the table'. But this is certainly not colloquial in any dialect of English I've ever heard; I presume it's Hispanic in origin, from the expression 'poner la mesa'.

    b

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