Advertisement

loader

Talk

Advanced search

Floor versus Ground - it's driving me mad!!

(29 Posts)
FruBayerischOla Mon 16-Oct-17 17:52:11

For me, the word 'floor' indicates somewhere inside a building (OK, forget a 'valley floor' for the moment!) and the word 'ground' indicates somewhere outside a building.

So if someone finds something on 'the floor', I expect that they're referring to somewhere inside their house/inside a shop/office etc.

But it appears that many people now think that 'the floor' can indicate on the pavement/road/in the park etc, whereas I'd use the word 'ground' in those scenarios.

Is anyone else in agreement with me - or am I going to be flamed for not keeping up with modern usage?!

AgentProvocateur Mon 16-Oct-17 17:54:46

No, you're right. Everyone else is wrong. 😉

FruBayerischOla Mon 16-Oct-17 18:01:45

There've been a number of threads over the last couple of years where the word 'floor' has been used instead of 'ground'. It drives me a bit bonkers!

I know language moves on/changes, but it doesn't make sense - and I want to scream grin

DadDadDad Tue 17-Oct-17 13:07:29

I'm a bit baffled by the "driving me mad" / "makes me scream" reaction. Does it really affect your ability to communicate with others that badly?

What you describe does violate the (historic) dictionary distinction, but surely you can accept it has some sense to it? Presumably, our brains tend to just categorise it as "the surface under our feet", and it's a bit of an effort in the flow of conversation to pick the right word. Many times in my life I've corrected myself having said "floor" when I meant "ground" and vice versa.

It would be interesting to know if other languages make this distinction. (If not, that suggests, we are quite capable of understanding what is referred to in the context).

KoalaD Tue 17-Oct-17 13:08:31

I agree with you. It annoys me.

SleepingInYourFlowerbed Tue 17-Oct-17 13:10:29

Hmm, I'd probably say floor for pavement and road as it's not the ground to me. Ground is the soil, grass, vegetation, rock - naturally occurring basically. Floor is man-made. But pretty sure that's just me making stuff up! grin

KoalaD Tue 17-Oct-17 13:11:31

Floor is only something with a ceiling over it.

DadDadDad Tue 17-Oct-17 13:19:07

Floor is only something with a ceiling over it.

Unless it's the sea floor, of course. grin

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Tue 17-Oct-17 13:20:46

Ground is earth to me too.

DadDadDad Tue 17-Oct-17 13:22:55

Sleeping - that's interesting. I assumed that the distinction was outside = ground, inside = floor, but you are suggesting natural = ground, man-made=floor.

DadDadDad Tue 17-Oct-17 13:24:55

DameDiazepam - do you literally mean earth as in soil? So, if you were standing on a large rocky outcrop, would you call that ground?

DadDadDad Tue 17-Oct-17 13:26:09

By the way, I'm not trying to be snarky, I find it genuinely fascinating the way we make these category distinctions, which can be more nuanced than we initially think.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Tue 17-Oct-17 13:27:02

I would say ground. I thinkgrin

Anything earthy/natural is ground.

RatRolyPoly Tue 17-Oct-17 13:28:24

I had this argument only the other day; floor to me is man-made, not indoor. Roads are floor to me. This came up in the context of choosing "flooring" for a section of garden.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Tue 17-Oct-17 13:28:42

Oh dear,except you'd say the floor of a cave.

Eolian Tue 17-Oct-17 13:29:34

Not sure if YABU. According to a quick google, the Old English and Germanic word meant (internal)floor, ground, bottom of sea/lake/cave, and even meadow. However, it seems as though it generally means the bottom, horizontal layer of a specific place, rather than the surface of the earth in general (i.e. the ground).

KoalaD Tue 17-Oct-17 13:29:37

natural = ground, man-made=floor.

Nah. If I drop something on my paved outdoor area, or on the Tarmac footpath, I'd say ground. Not floor.

KickAssAngel Tue 17-Oct-17 13:29:37

I'm with OP.

Ground = outside. Floor = inside (except things like valley/sea floor, but we also use bed for those, so that's a whole other thing).

Eolian Tue 17-Oct-17 13:31:08

Sorry, meant to say - it's the 'specific place' bit that's seemingly relevant, not the question of whether it's indoors or outdoors (hence sea floor, valley floor etc).

KoalaD Tue 17-Oct-17 13:32:08

Roads are floor to me.

Nooooo. Really?! No. grin

it seems as though it generally means the bottom, horizontal layer of a specific place, rather than the surface of the earth in general (i.e. the ground).

This. This makes sense, IMO.

PrincessLuna Tue 17-Oct-17 13:33:48

Totally agree with you. When I google the definition I get “the lower surface of a room, on which one may walk”.

Although it also says it can mean bottom as in the bottom surface of the sea, a forest, a cave etc

NoCureForLove Tue 17-Oct-17 13:34:04

What do you make of "ground floor" then. Does you head hurt?!

DadDadDad Tue 17-Oct-17 13:35:12

So, if I built a barn over a patch of ground and didn't put any covering on the earth beneath my feet, then that would be both the ground and the floor... smile

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Tue 17-Oct-17 13:41:43

No one likes a smart arse Dadwink

Eolian Tue 17-Oct-17 13:43:39

So, if I built a barn over a patch of ground and didn't put any covering on the earth beneath my feet, then that would be both the ground and the floor

Yes. Precisely grin. Full marks for smartarsery.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now