Fwd: A question for a linguist

James A. Landau JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Sun Jan 21 23:27:53 UTC 2001

On  Fri, 19 Jan 2001 11:08:13  Luanne von Schneidemesser
<lvonschn at FACSTAFF.WISC.EDU> asked:

>I would like to know when the abbreviation "inc." for incorporated began
>being pronounced as "ink" as opposed to "incorporated".

I don't know if the following will be helpful, but here goes:

A man I was acquainted with in the late 1970's, one Neil "Bear" Belsky, was a
science fiction fan and like many such in that pre-Internet age was in the
habit of printing "zines" (i.e. things he wrote that he felt like
distributing to friends).  I have in front of me one such zine he distributed
in April 1978.  In it he wrote "This is a product of Bearly Adequate Inc."
(It was printed, rather poorly, by mimeograph, and the printing job was
indeed "barely adequate"). In another zine of February 1979, this one
photocopied, he wrote "This zine is a production of Bearly Adequate Ink."
Conclusion: in 1978 "ink" and "Inc." was an obvious pun.

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