Millie Webb millie-webb at CHARTER.NET
Tue Jul 23 03:52:27 UTC 2002

Millie Webb <millie-webb at CHARTER.NET> writes:

> I picked "kitty corner" (kiddy corner, catty corner, cater corner,
>qater corner, etc.).
  I have often seen /cater corner/ in writing, but I have never heard
anyone say anything but"katty-corner" or "kitty-corner."  Who says " cater
corner"  and how is it pronounced? Long _ a_ or short?
A. Murie


I have seen "lay people" write it (and trust me, you don't see it written often by chance) "kitty corner", "kiddy corner", "catty corner", "cater corner" and "qater corner" (though this latter was in a HUGE, old, red dictionary that I seem to recall was an American Heritage Dictionary).  I have heard it "kiddy corner", "kitty corner" (which both sound virtually identical due to the "alveolar flap" that is a combination of "d" and "t"), "catty corner", "cat's corner" and "cater corner" (or "kater", if you prefer I spell it that way, but I assume the person would have spelled it with a "c", thinking it was from "cat").  Almost everyone I asked about it assumed it came from the word "cat" in some way.  The more "formal" written etymologies I have seen claim it came from "qater", as in "four", and I did not run into any "lay people" who agreed they "would have guessed that, but just hadn't thought about it much".  Oops, one more: "king's corner", I have heard too.  I assume because of the children's card game.  

Still Me, Millie

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