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    #1

    send down/ keep o's nose to the grindstone

    Dear teachers,


    Just now I read an article concerning the colleges of Oxford and Cambridge and I was wonder-struck from the used expressions for “expulsion” as well as for “hard work”.


    Women at Oxford and Cambridge are accepted as a favor.
    I’ve been told by friends of mine that the competition for places in the five women’s colleges is so great that to avoid being “sent down” to make room for someone else they have to work very hard. They have to keep their noses to the grindstone much more than the men.
    send down = expelled


    Suspend or dismiss from a university, principally a British one. For example,


    “He's done very poorly ever since he was sent down from Oxford.”


    The student or undergraduate is responsible to his college for discipline and he may be punished by the dean or senior tutor of his college in various ways, depending on the seriousness of the offence-they may “gate” him, i.g. confine him to college after certain hours, may “rusticate” him, i.e. send him down for a limited time, or they may “send him down” for a very serious offence. Failure to pass exams and thus lower the academic prestige of a college is a “crime” punishable by expulsion in many universities.


    get the gate Slang.



    To be dismissed or rejected.


    rusticate (chiefly British) to suspend (a student) from a university.


    expulsion = the act of expelling or the state of being expelled.
    keep one's nose to the grindstone

    Stay hard at work, as in

    “We expect John to get good grades again, since he really keeps his nose to the “grindstone.

    This expression, first recorded in 1539, alludes to a tool that must be sharpened by being held to a grindstone.

    Would you tell to me whether the mentioned above expressions have a contemporary sounding?


    Regards.


    V.
    Last edited by vil; 19-Mar-2008 at 14:15.


    • Join Date: Mar 2008
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    #2

    Re: send down/ keep o's nose to the grindstone

    Since I am not British, I can only give you an American point of view. I suppose what you have there would sound contemporary in Britain, but once again, I can only postulate.

    Gate: I am not exactly sure what this entails in Britain. The closest thing I can think of is a student being put on "academic probation" which means that their grades are paid special attention to due to poor performance. Certain privileges may be revoked also.

    Rusticate: Once again, I suppose this would be fine in Britain. However, I would think suspend is more contemporary and common.

    Send him down: Expulsion is a much more common word. I have never heard "send down" as a saying, but it may be a popular euphemism in Britain.

    Keep their noses to the grindstone: This seems to be a very sound idiom for the situation. It is a semi-common saying and simple enough that the meaning can also be inferred if it has not been heard before.

    Good Luck


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #3

    Re: send down/ keep o's nose to the grindstone

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    Dear teachers,


    Just now I read an article concerning the colleges of Oxford and Cambridge and I was wonder-struck from the used expressions for “expulsion” as well as for “hard work”.


    Women at Oxford and Cambridge are accepted as a favor.
    I’ve been told by friends of mine that the competition for places in the five women’s colleges is so great that to avoid being “sent down” to make room for someone else they have to work very hard. They have to keep their noses to the grindstone much more than the men.

    send down = expelled Temporarily expelled. Sent down for a stated period of time. Similar to "rusticated" - which meant to be sent to the country, sent out of the town.

    Suspend or dismiss from a university, principally a British one. For example,
    “He's done very poorly ever since he was sent down from Oxford.”


    The student or undergraduate is responsible to his college for discipline and he may be punished by the dean or senior tutor of his college in various ways, depending on the seriousness of the offence-they may “gate” him, i.g. confine him to college after certain hours, may “rusticate” him, i.e. send him down for a limited time, or they may “send him down” for a very serious offence. Failure to pass exams and thus lower the academic prestige of a college is a “crime” punishable by expulsion in many universities.


    get the gate Slang. Have you a reference for this idiom? I have not met it. The term is "to be gated" = to be locked in, barred from leaving. Quite the opposite from being sent down - you can't leave your college.
    To be dismissed or rejected.


    rusticate (chiefly British) to suspend (a student) from a university. Restricted use to Oxford and Cambridge Universities.


    expulsion = the act of expelling or the state of being expelled.

    keep one's nose to the grindstone Very common and much used,
    Stay hard at work, as in

    “We expect John to get good grades again, since he really keeps his nose to the “grindstone.

    This expression, first recorded in 1539, alludes to a tool that must be sharpened by being held to a grindstone.

    Would you tell to me whether the mentioned above expressions have a contemporary sounding?


    Regards.


    V.
    .

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    #4

    Re: send down/ keep o's nose to the grindstone

    Hi demonlynxx,

    Thank you for your prompt reply as well as for your kindness. I came round to the opinion that I had good reason to put my question in my original post above.

    Thank you also for your original verification of the idiom in question ' keep one's nose to the grindstone".

    Regards.

    V.

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    #5

    Re: send down/ keep o's nose to the grindstone

    Hi Anglika,

    Thank you for your close examination of my original post above. Thank you also for your assiduous emendations and felicitous interpretations.

    There is the link concerning the idiom “ get the gate”
    get the gate: Web Search Results from Answers.com

    Regards.

    V.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #6

    Re: send down/ keep o's nose to the grindstone

    Interesting. I know that as "get the sack".

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