From: "David Starner" <[log in to unmask]> > On Wed, Nov 28, 2001 at 08:21:56AM -0500, Muke Tever wrote: > > But as a productive *noun*forming suffix I think -ese pretty clearly does mean > > "language" or "manner of speech". Say "X-ese is a ____"... > > It's also a term for ethnicity, though - Japanese, Chinese, Genoese, > Siamese. I said that--but that's as an adjective, though, not a noun. I've seen written things like "A Japanese is..." but that's not idiomatic at all for me--I'd have to say "A Japanese person is...". Even when it is used that way, it's still just an adjective used absolutely, as it doesn't take plural marking ("Seven Japanese are.." not "Seven Japaneses are"--although it used to be, once), though you might conceivably say things like "all these little Japaneses" when talking about dialects or whatever. (Well, I should say I might still use -ese forms nominally in a collective construction like "The Japanese don't..." but I think I would still consider that an adjective.) *Muke!