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    Re: language and spatio-temporal orientation
    From: Marcel Tschudin
    Date: 2010 Jul 27, 01:56 +0300

    Peter Fogg you asked: "But why?" I'm not really able to answer your
    question. A possible reason may however consist in differences between
    dialects and something like a "high French". If I remember right there
    are also parts in France where very strong dialects are spoken. There
    seem to exist considerable efforts to "protect" the French language.
    In those parts which I visited people couldn't - at least not
    immediately - understand septente (70) or nonante (90).
    On Tue, Jul 27, 2010 at 12:43 AM, Peter Fogg  wrote:
    > Marcel Tschudin wrote:
    >> It's not only the names between 80 and 90 but also those between 70
    >> and 79 in France 79 would be 60+19 in Switzerland and possibly also
    >> some other French speaking parts (Belgium?) it would correspond to 79.
    >> In proper French their are no names for 70, 80 and 90. In some French
    >> speaking parts they have at least names for 70 and 90.
    > But why? � This appears to be a regression, in that as late as the early
    > twentieth century in France the simpler form was favoured, although modern
    > French has gone (what seems to me to be) backwards in using, when speaking,
    > the more convoluted form, while linguistic satellites like the relevant
    > parts of Switzerland and Belgium, and Canada too have declined to follow
    > (well, why would they?).
    > I have personal evidence of this.� My wife tells me that her grandfather,
    > born in the late nineteenth century and never educated beyond a
    > primary-school level, always referred to nonante and never said
    > quatre-vingt-dix as everyone else did, and as my wife was taught in school.
    > She thought it was quaint and old fashioned, part of the old chap's charm,
    > but it appears to me to be quite the other way around.� I've been consulting
    > the modern oracle and have learned much about how these words for French
    > numbers may have originated, but nothing about why France changed these
    > spoken numbers in what seems like such an illogical way.

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