Discussion in 'English Only' started by A90Six, Jul 10, 2006.

  1. A90Six Senior Member

    England - English.
    The use of invite instead of invitation has always grated on my ears. When I hear it used on TV, in the cinema or in conversation, I hear myself shouting, "INVITATION" like a grammatical Tourette's sufferer.
    Although dictionaries tend to point out that the use is colloquial it seems to be so widespread now that it may be given noun status in its own right.
    How widespread does this type of usage/abusage have to be before it becomes 'acceptable'?
    I don't think I shall ever be able to accept it. Am I just an old fuddy duddy?
  2. . 1 Banned

    Ferntree Gully
    Australian Australia
    The language is vibrant and growing.
    The meaning is obvious by context and no confusion should result by the use in that manner.
    I must confess that it does sound slightly clunky but I will reserve my Tourettisms for something else.

    I will accept an invite as quickly as an invitation if I am interested.
  3. panjandrum

    panjandrum Occasional Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    It makes me squirm too.
    It doesn't happen too often, but it makes me squirm.
    I am sure that if Bishop Cranmer had given me an earnest invite to England in 1659* I would have refused him, complaining that I don't accept colloquial invitations.

    Still, it makes me squirm.

    * The OED's first example of invite as a noun, meaning invitation.
  4. . 1 Banned

    Ferntree Gully
    Australian Australia
    You would have missed a hell of a party and even though it stil(l) makes me squirm slightly I will accept any invite I consider attractive.

    Interested in the function not the form.
  5. foxfirebrand

    foxfirebrand Senior Member

    The Northern Rockies
    Southern AE greatly modified by a 1st-generation Scottish-American mother, and growing up abroad.
    I too would squirm if I got an invite from Archbishop Cranmer-- but not because of the terminology.
  6. big bruce New Member

    Well, I too want to squirm whenever I hear the word invite used as a noun. It brings to mind Jed Clampet in the Beverly Hillbillies series from the sixties. He often used invite as a noun as in, "Granny, we just got an invite to eat at Mr. Drysdale's. Sure hope he's got some good vittles!"

    My daughter-in-law uses invite as a noun constantly. I hold my tongue but I just want to yell for Jethro to come for vittles. I don't understand it either. She is a very intelligent woman. She is a college graduate and valedictorian of her class in high school. Oh well, I guess when I get and invite from her I should be sure to bring my jug of moonshine with me.

  7. hmtony Member

    Invite has been given noun status.
  8. big bruce New Member

    No doubt it has noun status...but I still want to yell for Jethro. There are many words in the dictionary that have informal status. Usually that means that the word is slang or part of popular usage. In other words, the dictionary has given in to the poor grammar craze because of the popularity of a word or its usage. Case in point, the dictionary has formally adopted EVOO as a word. This is Rachel Ray's term for extra virgin olive oil. Believe me, I won't be going to Rachel Ray for grammar lessons. Cooking maybe, but grammar never!
  9. Muppet Master New Member

    I disagree. Language is indeed vibrant and changing but we have to ask how and why. To convert nouns to verbs and vice versa is not acceptable. Getting rid of split infinities (for ease of use or other reasons) is a good example of language changing.

    Just because language changes isn't in itself a good thing. What happens when changes happen which distort or confuse? For example, so many people confuse 'been' with 'being' or 'their'' with 'there' with 'they're'. Confusing homonyms is not acceptable either.

    I wouldn't accept an invite but I would accept an invitation (depending on who sent it).
  10. panjandrum

    panjandrum Occasional Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    To clarify the point I alluded to almost seven years ago ...
    The use of 'invite' as a noun, meaning invitation, is not new. It has a very long history. The earliest written example given in the OED is from 1659.
    Those suggesting it is something new are mistaken.
  11. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    Moderation Note:

    I deleted the increasingly testy discussion about verbs becoming nouns for two main reasons:
    1. It was becoming increasingly testy.
    2. The general discussion of the evolution of language (or not) is outside the scope of English Only, which is a usage forum. Perhaps you would like to take up this discussion in EHL.

    Thank you.

  12. jokaec Senior Member

    Chinese - Hong Kong
    In US, if I say "did you get a wedding 'invite' or ' 'invitation' from John and Nancy? Which one is better in colloquial AmE? Thank you.
  13. Juhasz Senior Member

    English - United States
    I don't see any need for using the abbreviated form - whether it's a neologism or not. I always say "invitation" when using the noun and "invite" when using the verb.

    I suppose I'm less stingy with my syllables than some people.

Share This Page