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Thread: Estimate The Size Of Your Vocabulary

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by latch View Post
    Oh thanks for making excuses for my low score! I recognize a lot of Latin from French and Spanish classes and awareness of the other romantic languages. And I've long been aware of word roots, their suffixes and prefixes coming from other languages. And frequently research the entomology of words. I can eek out the definition of a word from its context and parts.

    But I got mostly simple words I didn't know.
    Oh gosh, this must have come across the wrong way. I didn't mean to disparage your deductive abilities.

    Quote Originally Posted by ferrus View Post
    44,500.
    And it's happened.

  2. #12
    Mens bona regnum possidet ferrus's Avatar
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    Hey, it's not my fault I read up on the process of beer fermentation and knew what sparging was.
    Die Logik ist keine Lehre, sondern ein Spiegelbild der Welt. Die Logik ist transcendental. - Wittgenstein

  3. #13
    ..you don't know me LordLatch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sappho View Post
    Oh gosh, this must have come across the wrong way. I didn't mean to disparage your deductive abilities.
    No the first comment was kidding. The second section was bonus information. I bet @Hephaestus will do well.
    Stand clear of the closing doors, please.

  4. #14
    Member INTP_Polly's Avatar
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    28,000 meh

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    Quote Originally Posted by ferrus View Post
    Hey, it's not my fault I read up on the process of beer fermentation and knew what sparging was.
    Did you know uxoricide? That was the one that made me wonder when an intuitive knowledge of Latin would go a little too far.

  6. #16
    Utisz's Avatar
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    29,100.

    But the variance of interpretation of words in the grey area would seem significant when compared with the variance of vocabulary of native speakers. It's not necessarily about honesty but about the psychology of the person taking the test.

  7. #17
    Mens bona regnum possidet ferrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sappho View Post
    Did you know uxoricide? That was the one that made me wonder when an intuitive knowledge of Latin would go a little too far.
    I knew the word uxorious. I actually had seen it used as an adjective to describe Bill Clinton of all people in The Times once. And the legal term et uxor. And actually I've just read/translated a ton of Latin inscriptions in parish churches in England with the word used - these big grotesque 17th century semi-mausoleums you often see in the corner of such churches memorialising a notable local family, with effigies, great baroque stone frames, possibly bewigged figures leaning on acanthus rimmed altars and scroll-like plaques with portentous inscriptions. So it wasn't difficult to work out the rest.
    Die Logik ist keine Lehre, sondern ein Spiegelbild der Welt. Die Logik ist transcendental. - Wittgenstein

  8. #18
    The Pompatus of Love C.J.Woolf's Avatar
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    36,500. And Ferrus maintains the integrity of the universe.
    Last edited by C.J.Woolf; 06-15-2014 at 08:15 PM.
    Your gardening sucks and your avocados ain't fruitin'. -- Sappho the Maestro

  9. #19
    Global Moderator Polemarch's Avatar
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    In the statistical analysis, I enjoyed this passage:

    Now, remember that these percentiles are not for the population as a whole, but rather just those who have taken the test online. Comparing with self-reported SAT scores from previous analysis, overall participation is in roughly the 98th percentile of the American population as a whole — it is apparently a very "elite" group of people who spend their time taking vocabulary tests on the Internet!
    So yes - the median vocabulary for someone of my age is around 28,000 words, which is about what I got. But that median represents an extreme self-selection of people who like to spend their time taking vocabulary tests on the internet, which is to say, a very small number of people.
    We didn't land on Plymouth Rock. Plymouth Rock landed on us.

  10. #20
    Meae Musae Servus Hephaestus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ferrus View Post
    Hey, it's not my fault I read up on the process of beer fermentation and knew what sparging was.


    An interest in fermentation takes time to come to fruition, but it does pay off in the end.

    Quote Originally Posted by latch View Post
    No the first comment was kidding. The second section was bonus information. I bet @Hephaestus will do well.
    37,600. Not bad. There were lots of words I once knew, but couldn't select because I didn't remember them well enough to put them in a sentence for all the trenchant invectives exhorting me to so do in the troposphere.

    Fun fact: I use at least one word a day that isn't in the spell-checker for this site. At least two if you count the words I make up.

    @Polemarch, thanks for drawing my attention to the statistical analysis. Now I know that for my age I'm barely holding my own with earlier tests. At least I'm still above the 90th percentile among word nerds! Woot! But I used to easily make the 98th percentile for tests of vocabulary and grammar. I've been getting lazy, and haven't browsed a dictionary in weeks. Next thing you know; I"ll start misusing commas! It'll be a commastrophy!
    For some, "how", not "why", is the fundamental unit of measure for curiosity. This divergence is neither parallel, nor straight. Where one might have a "why?-5" problem, it might only be a "how?-2" question. But then, there are also many things where the "why?" is immediately obvious but the "how?" is best measured in centuries of perpetual wonder. Both approaches have their drawbacks.

    If one is superior, the other is unaware of it.

    --Meditations on Uncertainty Vol ξ(x)

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