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The Coffee “Is All”

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Kathy in Rye, New York, used to live in Central Pennsylvania, where she was surprised by a friend announcing The coffee’s all meaning “The coffee’s all gone.” This phrase is a vestige of Pennsylvania Dutch, a dialect of German. The coffee’s all is what linguists call a calque, a direct borrowing of the German word alle, which means “finished” or “all gone.” This is part of a complete episode.

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