What happened to rooves?

Posted by: Copago

What happened to rooves? - Wed Feb 09 2011 02:54 PM

When I was a girl (and I walked barefoot to school no matter the weather wink ) I was taught that the plural of roof was rooves.
While going through some of my son's school work yesterday there was this rule:

Change F to v for words ending in f or fe.
For example: loaf/loaves.
Some exceptions are roofs, chiefs and hoofs.


When did this happen?

Actually, I would have done 'hooves' as well. Now I'm more confused. I sometimes wonder how they can let untrained people teach their kids. LOL crazy


Posted by: reeshy

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed Feb 09 2011 02:56 PM

I'm 20, and have never heard "rooves", but I'd definitely use "hooves" and not "hoofs"!
Posted by: TabbyTom

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed Feb 09 2011 03:37 PM

Dictionaries give both hoofs and hooves for the plural of hoof, but I can't find a dictionary that gives rooves. Indeed, I seem to remember teachers stigmatizing rooves as wrong when I was a kid. Maybe it's a dialectal thing.

I think there are other exceptions besides those in Conor's book. For example, the plural of proof is certainly proofs, and barristers get briefs from instructing solicitors.
Posted by: Copago

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed Feb 09 2011 05:38 PM

eek I've been stigmatised?? wink

To stop myself thinking I was making it up I got onto google and found this:

Quote:


1. The plural of roof is roofs or rooves. "Rooves" is an older form of the word and rarely used these days. Australian children right up to the 1980s, for example, were brought up with the word "rooves" rather than roofs, and it is still an accepted form in Australia today (though uncommon). Also, despite New Zealand English developing from UK English, it should be noted that in NZ, the plural of roof is rooves, in both its written and spoken form.

2. The accepted plural is "roofs". The Oxford English Dictionary lists "rooves" as an alternate, one of several outdated spellings used in the UK, and in New England as late as the 19th century.


Read more: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_the_plural_form_of_roof_-_roofs_or_rooves#ixzz1DVYEWfaK


So now I'm stigmatised AND uncommon! LOL

I must look into hooves .. perhaps that's one of those English/American ones, Reeshy?
Posted by: dg_dave

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed Feb 09 2011 06:30 PM

Another word that is like that is "safe" to make "safes," not "saves."

I saw something that Australian children into the 1980s used "rooves," which is acceptable, but not commonly used.

From answers.com:
Quote:

1. The plural of roof is roofs or rooves. "Rooves" is an older form of the word and rarely used these days. Australian children right up to the 1980s, for example, were brought up with the word "rooves" rather than roofs, and it is still an accepted form in Australia today (though uncommon).
Posted by: mehaul

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed Feb 09 2011 07:13 PM

Life to lives seems reasonable but what then are we to do with lifes' little wonders?

Wife to wives also seems reasonable but no man ever dare go plural on that one.

Working backwards, Is the singular of hives supposed to have been hife all these years? And should I add only chife to my cream cheese? I'd certainly become nauseated if upon the ocean blue I was rocked by a single wafe.


Edit for PS: I grew up in New England in the 50s and we used the term rooves even then. Certain isolated rural areas of New England countryside still used the term, except we do not pahk our cahs on the rooves anymore (proved too damaging to the fellahs inside the cah and buildin.)
Posted by: reeshy

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Feb 10 2011 01:11 PM

Originally Posted By: Copago
I must look into hooves .. perhaps that's one of those English/American ones, Reeshy?


I've never seen "hoofs" used in British English (I'm Scottish), but it's not as weird as "rooves"! English is very strange with plurals, haha!
Posted by: satguru

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Feb 10 2011 06:22 PM

I thought it was just me, I captioned some photos with rooves a few years ago and got picked up on it although I'd used it all my life. We still say it like that and wonder why they changed it considering it followed a standard rule? Now I know I wasn't wrong as originally thought I'm going back to the old way, and would recommend we all do as language follows common usage.
Posted by: dg_dave

Re: What happened to rooves? - Fri Feb 11 2011 05:52 AM

Looks like we have our own "beliefs" (oops..."believes") of the correct word. wink
Posted by: satguru

Re: What happened to rooves? - Fri Feb 11 2011 06:31 PM

The exception that proofs the rule??
Posted by: mehaul

Re: What happened to rooves? - Sat Feb 12 2011 07:56 AM

I will go to my graf (singular of graves) disagreeing with this general guideline (not rule since there are exceptions). Maybe the openings in my sief (singular of sieves) aeren't large enough to allow passage of such a too broad restriction. Maybe the Cheves and Chieves (Chef and Chief plurals iaw this rule) should go to their respective kitchens and tepees to come up with a new useless guideline (I before e except after c is the most rediculous of them all. There are more exceptions than words that follow that one)

Did some one say neckerchieves? Gusundtiedt!
Posted by: reeshy

Re: What happened to rooves? - Sat Feb 12 2011 09:03 AM

English is not a very technical language. As mehaul says, there are probably more exceptions than words that follow rules. English is one of the most irregular languages I've had experience of (probably THE most irregular actually), so there are always going to be oddities. I think only Esperanto can be learned without irregularities!
Posted by: MotherGoose

Re: What happened to rooves? - Sat Feb 12 2011 07:36 PM

It's a wonder to me that any of us ever learns English at all!
Posted by: Santana2002

Re: What happened to rooves? - Mon Feb 14 2011 12:58 PM

I too find hooves perfectly acceptable, but find rooves looks peculiar. I only remember seeing it as roofs in the plural form.
Posted by: Snowman

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Feb 17 2011 07:37 AM

Originally Posted By: mehaul
Life to lives seems reasonable but what then are we to do with lifes' little wonders?


Move the apostrophe slightly to the left perhaps? wink
Posted by: mehaul

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Feb 17 2011 08:57 AM

No, I meant the possessive of lifes plural, But if you want it to be French, okay: L'ifes.
Posted by: lindamarie23

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed Jun 22 2011 12:43 AM

In Canada we say "rooves" but write "roofs". Silly!
Posted by: Jakeroo

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Jun 23 2011 08:43 PM

I'm Canadian and when I was in elementary school (too many moons ago to count), we spelled it as "rooves" and pronounced it with the long ooooo sound, which may be one example of why so many non-Canadians used to think the majority of us say "ooot and aboot" instead of "out and about". Americans spelled it as "roofs" and prounounced it as something similar to "ruwffs" - like the "woof" sound a dog might make (no disparagement intended, btw). "Roofs" is now an acceptable spelling here, but as lindamarie has stated, we still don't pronounce it as if we were saying "hoofs".

In most "circles" here (including the Arctic one lol), "hooves" is a noun and refers to more than one animal foot. "Hoofs" is sort of like a "vernacular verb" and refers to movement, such as dancing, or as in "he doesn't have a car, so he hoofs it to work".

Sometimes I blame the global popularity of Microsoft products for certain spellings "going away". I work in a GOVERNMENT office and I do not have the ability to change my spell-checker dictionary. For reasons unfathomable to me, our default (which can only be changed by some IT admin guy) is U.S. English (as if any American would be reading a single one of our communications lol).

These days the so-called "rules" seem to be changed at will. Words are added and removed from dictionaries every year. What gives "them" the right to remove ANY word?? If it existed at all, it's still a WORD, whether it is used in everyday speech "on the street" or not. Do they really think that by putting in new "cool buzzwords" and deleting perfectly good ones that have been in use for centuries, that dictionaries will suddenly become popular best sellers that people read for entertainment??? Who ARE these people - and who put the current lot "in charge" anyway? I must have missed the memo...

(helplessly giggling now).
Posted by: mehaul

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Jun 23 2011 11:16 PM

Of course, must be the word Thiefs (Thieves? take your pick) making off with all our good words!
Posted by: sisterseagull

Re: What happened to rooves? - Tue Jan 31 2012 04:11 AM

I was taught and still use the word 'rooves'
Posted by: sportsherald

Re: What happened to rooves? - Sat Mar 17 2012 09:03 PM

I am a Canadian that pronounces the plural of roof as rooves, but it does look funny to me to spell it that way (I have a general preference for British English). In my government office, I can select "Canadian English" for spell check, which is then displayed as "English (UK)." I remember protesting as a child that it should be "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves."

In Canada, we have the famous hockey team, the Toronto Maple Leafs- which should, in my mind, be the Maple Leaves, but apparently they were named after a Maple Leaf Regiment that had been nicknamed the Maple Leafs... They were called the St. Patricks (or St. Pats) before that, and there was just one of him.
Posted by: LeoDaVinci

Re: What happened to rooves? - Mon Mar 19 2012 06:10 AM

Originally Posted By: reeshy
probably THE most irregular actually

You've never tried to learn Russian, have you?!

I was in school in Canada in the 80s, but was taught that roof --> roofs. I've never noticed anyone saying "rooves" either, but, I do live in Toronto, a city heavily influenced by the large immigrant population.
Posted by: reeshy

Re: What happened to rooves? - Mon Mar 19 2012 02:32 PM

Originally Posted By: LeoDaVinci
Originally Posted By: reeshy
probably THE most irregular actually

You've never tried to learn Russian, have you?!


Ah, I have, and stand corrected. laugh Alas, my Russian never got very far and now I have little time to go back to it, unfortunately.
Posted by: Copago

Re: What happened to rooves? - Mon Mar 19 2012 03:20 PM

I think it's funny that the few of us who did or do use 'rooves' are spread so far and wide!

On the news just now they're talking about a large storm and the youngish weather man is saying "rooves" .... got me wondering how he would spell it!
Posted by: AlexxSchneider

Re: What happened to rooves? - Tue Mar 20 2012 10:49 AM

A friend of mine from Kent still uses "rooves", at least in his writing; I don't know if I've ever heard him say it!
Posted by: Snowman

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed May 02 2012 06:45 AM

Originally Posted By: mehaul
No, I meant the possessive of lifes plural, But if you want it to be French, okay: L'ifes.

laugh
I think it's unlikely that life would be pluralised for that phrase. If it were it would be "Lives' little wonders".
Posted by: Chavs

Re: What happened to rooves? - Tue May 08 2012 12:37 PM

Fascinating discussion.

I have always been confused by the rooves/roofs thing and avoid writing it at all costs.


I still am a bit confused. ;D
Posted by: ren33

Re: What happened to rooves? - Tue May 22 2012 10:12 PM

Originally Posted By: Chavs


I still am a bit confused. ;D

We often have that effect here at FT!
Posted by: MikeMaster99

Re: What happened to rooves? - Wed May 23 2012 12:06 AM

Just confirming that I was taught 'rooves' as the plural. But this was an Aussie school (before the 1980s), to support Copago's original statement. I would now never write 'rooves' but always pronounce the plural of roof in that fashion (as per lindamarie and others).

Silly (and totally irrelevant) thought for the day: Does that mean 'doof doof' music should really be called 'dooves' music??
Posted by: sportsherald

Re: What happened to rooves? - Sat Jul 21 2012 12:00 PM

I just thought to check oxforddictionaries.com for "rooves," and, sure enough, it provides this: "Spelling help
The most usual plural of roof is roofs, although rooves is sometimes used." On the other hand, dictionary.com did not find "rooves" in its listings.

As for "doof doof," Oxford only says that it is "...stupid..." (about one doof).
Posted by: Jazmee27

Re: What happened to rooves? - Sun Oct 28 2012 11:06 AM

Interesting and funny smile

I, too, was taught "hooves" and think "hoofs" looks funny--but the language seems to change depending where you are these days. And, about the dictionaries, I find it hard to believe that the writers think that eliminating a word means it suddenly disappears from everybody's vocabulary.

Speaking of which, and off topic, I find it insulting how some people make fun of another for using "big words." The one day, my mother was singled out an ridiculed by her coworkers for using the word "intrinsic." Yesterday (though I'm sure it was a joke), she laughed at me when I used the word "indicative" in a sentence (for some reason, I do this a lot--I'll just insert a word not often used in everyday conversation into my vocabulary--and the crazy thing is, sometimes I can't even define it, but somehow know it works in that context!)
Posted by: AlexxSchneider

Re: What happened to rooves? - Tue Oct 30 2012 12:48 PM

I agree with that last, Jazmee - it's baffling to me that people criticise others' use of "big words", as if a book is the only place "big words" belong! I find that those words are not commented upon when the would-be criticizer knows what they mean... food for thought.
Posted by: postrophe

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Nov 29 2012 11:14 AM

I googled roofs/rooves and arrived here, only because I had seen rooves (gets red wiggly underlining in my Chrome spell-checker btw) on a WWII website, and it had looked a tad odd.

Blasted thing doesn't like "tad" either! eek
Posted by: Copago

Re: What happened to rooves? - Thu Nov 29 2012 02:51 PM

Welcome postrophe smile

I love seeing this thread pop up smile I find this kind of thing very interesting.