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Old December 09, 2019, 10:40 AM
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Escarabajo

Hi,

Today I've learned that any Coleoptera bug es un escarabajo. Is there a way to pinpoint the specific way of life? I mean, making balls of dung for a living? Escarabajo de mierda is my first guess, probably incorrect .
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Old December 09, 2019, 12:00 PM
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In Spanish escarabajo is, to my knowledge, a generic term for beetle. It certainly corresponds with the English term, scarab which is the dung beetle and not a Cleopatra bug. I looked up Cleopatra bug and found that it pertains to a certain class centipedes. Centipedes are not beetles and it would appear to be wrong to call them escarabajos. Be careful of that m word which translates as the English s word. These coarse words have their place, but lose their force if overused as is commonly done lately. Consider using heces or excremento instead.
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Old December 09, 2019, 01:10 PM
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A dictionary gives three different ways to say 'dung beetle.' In order, according to number of hits on the internet:
escarabajo pelotero
escarabajo estercolero
escarabajo coprófrago


The Spanish word for any beetle is escarabajo. In English, we differentiate the various beetles by adding a descriptive adjective - Japanese beetle, June beetle, Scarab (beetle)/dung beetle, African Goliath beetle, etc. They do the same thing in Spanish.
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Old December 10, 2019, 04:09 AM
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Thanks!

To poli:

It isn't Cleopatra, it's Coleoptera.
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Old December 10, 2019, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyrn View Post
Thanks!

To poli:

It isn't Cleopatra, it's Coleoptera.
Oh, I thought it was a typo.
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Old December 20, 2019, 10:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
descriptive adjective
is a tautology - there are no other kinds of adjective than descriptive ones.
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Old December 20, 2019, 01:49 PM
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Oh no, Sancho. There are also possessive adjectives (my, your, ...), demonstrative adjectives (this, these, ...), ordinal adjectives (first, second, ...), and I'm sure I'm forgetting some others.
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Old December 21, 2019, 05:52 AM
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The examples you cite don't alter the fact that that an adjective is always descriptive and descriptive adjective is still a tautology.

"My, your" and "This and these" are pronouns.
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Last edited by Sancho Panther; December 22, 2019 at 05:24 AM.
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Old December 25, 2019, 02:36 PM
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@Sancho: Descriptive adjectives is correct terminology (see here).
That site also gives examples of possessive adjectives, demonstrative adjectives, quantitative adjectives, distributive adjectives, and interrogative adjectives (the three English articles are also listed).

You'll find many sites that type English adjectives by function. The number varies. Some use different terminology.
Some classify possessive adjectives, demonstrative adjectives, quantitative adjectives, distributive adjectives, and articles as determiners. But even then I found them saying, "determiners, and other adjectives, precede the noun they modify," effectively lumping all of the types into one group.

No matter how you slice it, not all adjectives are alike. So, a term that describes them -a descriptive adjective- is often pressed into service.

Last edited by Rusty; December 26, 2019 at 07:29 AM.
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