Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 11
  1. #1
    thedaffodils's Avatar
    thedaffodils is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,974
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    Hello!

    There're many honorific and self-deprecating expressions in the Mandarin(Chinese) language. In Chinese language, we use honorific word for 'you' when we talk with senior people or elders, or in formal occasion; but there's no such a comparable honorific word/ term for the English word of 'you'. And Chinese use self-deprcating terms when we introduce ourselves to people; for instance, a Chinese would introduce his son to his guest by saying, "This is my dog son", if translated literally. (Dog, in Chinese culture, refers to low or mean status)

    But It seems to me there're just a few honorific or self-deprecating expressions in the English language. Mr/Ms/Miss, Sir, Ma'am, Your Honor, Your Holiness, Her Majesty, lady, gentleman are usual terms of honorific. "In my humble opinion" is a self-deprecating phrase. And native speakers tend to use subjunctive mood to express a kind of 'honorific'.

    Apart from those, I am wondering whether there're any honorific or self-deprecating expressions in the English language. If yes, could you please give me more examples?

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by thedaffodils; 30-Aug-2008 at 06:56.

  2. #2
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    19,448
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    "In my humble opinion" [usually used when someone is being far from humble!]

  3. #3
    thedaffodils's Avatar
    thedaffodils is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,974
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    Hi Anglika, thanks for your reply.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    185
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    In American English, there generally aren't any verbal honorific terms other than the ones you already described. At least not when using common English. In a courtroom, it might be a bit different.

    As far as my experience is concerned, self-depreciating phrases are used when someone is being sarcastic or if they have made a mistake. They aren't used to introduce people. It would actually be insulting (to your son) to introduce him by comparing him to a dog, or it could be used to be humorous (depending on your sense of humor!).

    I'm new, so tell me if I am giving the kind of information you actually need.

  5. #5
    beascarpetta's Avatar
    beascarpetta is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Great Britain
      • Current Location:
      • Austria
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,331
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    I wonder whether

    "to put in my two cents"
    before stating one’s opinion [suggesting that one's opinion is of little value]

    would have to be considered here as well.

  6. #6
    thedaffodils's Avatar
    thedaffodils is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,974
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    Hi Thedeebo,

    Welcome to the forums. And thank you for your input. It's helpful.

    Hope you enjoy your stay here. See you around.

  7. #7
    thedaffodils's Avatar
    thedaffodils is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,974
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    Quote Originally Posted by beascarpetta View Post
    I wonder whether

    "to put in my two cents"
    before stating one’s opinion [suggesting that one's opinion is of little value]

    would have to be considered here as well.
    Hi Beascarpetta,

    Thank you for uploading your two dollars.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    142
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    Quote Originally Posted by thedaffodils View Post
    Hello!

    There're many honorific and self-deprecating expressions in the Mandarin(Chinese) language. In Chinese language, we use honorific word for 'you' when we talk with senior people or elders, or in formal occasion; but there's no such a comparable honorific word/ term for the English word of 'you'. And Chinese use self-deprcating terms when we introduce ourselves to people; for instance, a Chinese would introduce his son to his guest by saying, "This is my dog son", if translated literally. (Dog, in Chinese culture, refers to low or mean status)

    But It seems to me there're just a few honorific or self-deprecating expressions in the English language. Mr/Ms/Miss, Sir, Ma'am, Your Honor, Your Holiness, Her Majesty, lady, gentleman are usual terms of honorific. "In my humble opinion" is a self-deprecating phrase. And native speakers tend to use subjunctive mood to express a kind of 'honorific'.

    Apart from those, I am wondering whether there're any honorific or self-deprecating expressions in the English language. If yes, could you please give me more examples?

    Thanks in advance!
    How very interesting! Thank you, dear Daffodil, for enlightening us on the specialties of the Chinese language. Even the term "self-depricating expressions" is new to me.
    In the Russian language, there are similar expressions used in similar situations, except, upon introducing children, people don't call them names unless it is an informal meeting and people try to be funny.
    I do believe, the Englsh language lacks this sort of expressions. Meanwhile, they make a conversation smoother, more flexible, better adjusted to the situation.
    I wonder if such parentheses as "I think", "I believe", "I imagine", "As far as it concerns me", "To me,", "I guess", "I suppose", and a silly little word, "methinks" can be considered self-depricating...
    Last edited by NanetteDee; 16-Sep-2008 at 01:51. Reason: typo

  9. #9
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    19,448
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    Quote Originally Posted by NanetteDee View Post

    I wonder if such parentheses as "I think", "I believe", "I imagine", "As far as it concerns me", "To me,", "I guess", "I suppose", and a silly little word, "methinks" can be considered self-deprecating...
    Yes - they are all self-deprecating, but also can indicate that the speaker does not wish to confront but merely to question something.

    What's "silly" about methinks? A good although old-fashioned word!

  10. #10
    thedaffodils's Avatar
    thedaffodils is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,974
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Re: Honorific & Self-deprecating Expressions in English

    NanetteDee, thank you for your kind comment.

    NanetteDee or Anglika, could you please explain why 'I think', 'I believe', 'methinks'...as NanetteDee listed are considered self-deprecating words.

    I think it just stresses it is a personal viewpoint only. I don't count them into self-deprecating if they are in the Chinese language.

    Many thanks!

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Native English
    By wordwarrior in forum English Slang
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 10-Oct-2008, 19:01
  2. English Education In China
    By Aniu in forum Editing & Writing Topics
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 11-Jan-2008, 00:55
  3. Why I learn English the language I hate
    By zhengrong in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 43
    Last Post: 22-Jul-2007, 23:30
  4. English Expressions about greetings
    By juliana0403 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 28-Oct-2006, 13:28

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •