2017-10-09 02:41:27 UTC
A couple of days ago on late night TV, a young woman whose
English was barely accented ("Her English is too good ... that clearly
indicates that she is foreign) was asked what she had impressed her
especially, after moving to Spain from Cuba in her youth. One
thing she liked was "candies". (The other was canned corn -
you don't have to /cook/ the corn forever before you can eat.)
I would not mention it, except that I heard "candies" on another
show, too, on the same evening, an hour earlier or later, from
another young woman originallly from abroad. Also excellent
Logically, I can imagine extended contexts where "candies" would
be necessary, but I expected "candy" in both of these cases --
that is because "candy" is what I have always heard (AmE), even
in cases where the plural would be justified.
Is this, maybe, an idiom from the era of only one candy?
- Google-ngrams shows similar curves for BrE and AmE sources,
little candy at all before 1840, "candy" presence after WWI never as
low as before WWI; no chocolates before 1900, singular "candy"
much more frequent (5-10 times) than plural. If I read it right,
AmE writes about candy about 5 times as often as BrE.