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Dan Smith
Puzzle: what do all these English words have in common?

All of these English words have something in common. What is it? 

ancient
being
caffeine
concierge
conscience
counterfeit
deficient
deify
deign
deity
efficient
eiderdown
either
feisty
financier
foreign
forfeit
heifer
height
heirloom
heist
leisure
neither
prescient
protein
reimburse
science
seismic
seize
sleight
species
weiner
weir
weird

Feb 26, 2015 3:07 AM
19
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Comments · 19

I agree. They're exceptions to the famously unhelpful spelling rule:

 

'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.

 

These words fall into two groups: those where there IS an 'i' followed by an 'e' after a 'c' (financier, science etc), and those where an 'e' sits quite happily before an 'i' without there being any 'c' in sight (either, weird and so on).

 

Compared with English spelling, the alien sex thing seems a whole lot simpler.

February 26, 2015

The are all exceptions to the I before E rule?

February 26, 2015

They are all in a list.

Lol, just kidding. The real answer is a little more difficult to explain. All of these words are required to describe an ancient sexual ritual involving aliens. I would recite the story here, but I think it's a little too naughty for this forum.

February 26, 2015

The obvious answer can't be the right one, so.... I'll wait.. :)

February 26, 2015

I'm afraid that I can't really know what would be better in terms of the rules for learning a foreign language except I know that going crazy with grammar before speaking at all doesn't work. I did that for about 6 years with almost NO BENEFIT when it came down to actually using the language. From hearing your Spanish and how short a time you've been studying Dan, I'd say that I am now pretty impressed with Rosetta Stone from what you say. I guess now that you can actually hold a conversation it would maybe make sense to learn the grammar? That's what I was thinking about myself. Now that I can understand and speak I was thinking of going back and actually learning all those grammatical words like preterito y pluscumperfecto etc. now that they will make some sense to me and filling in all the gaps, but so far it hasn't been as useful as learning how to just say what I want to say, but I'm still wondering if I should keep on working it. I did get a really good little book that I'm working with called 1001 Pitfalls in Spanish but even with that what I did was make a big pile of flash cards out of it so that I can just learn to remember what the right way to say something is rather than the rule itself. I read the rules so now I'm hoping that they will be back there in my memory to be used by my unconsious mind if I review the examples. I have had exposure to the rules so I wonder how it would be with no exposure. We'll see if my new strategy works or not. I'm still struggling to figure out for myself where "rules" fit in with my learning. Is it easier to just "feel" and "know" intutively from experience when to use por or para or should I really work at memorizing that horrible long list of rules? I have a hard time with memorizing rules but maybe it's easier for others? Perhaps some rules are more useful than others and perhaps some are only useful after you already have a good grasp of using the language like i before e? Hard to know right?

February 26, 2015
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Dan Smith
Language Skills
English, Spanish
Learning Language
Spanish