or either ... one

Beverly Flanigan flanigan at OHIO.EDU
Tue Jan 27 03:35:34 UTC 2004

I first heard this from my Oklahoma-born sister-in-law, but she didn't
include "either."  She'd say, e.g., "I have to buy some cookies or make
some, one"--with a slight pause and a rising and falling intonation on
"one."  Michael Montgomery once asked how far this usage extended, and I
noted that I hear it occasionally in southern Ohio, but not nearly as much
as from my sister-in-law.

At 05:54 PM 1/26/2004 -0500, you wrote:
>"I thank you all, both," reminds me of a true Southernism, the "or either
>.... one" construction, as in
>"I have to buy some cookies or either make some, one."
>Where in other parts of the country we'd say
>"I either have to buy some cookies or make some, one or the other."
>Have we talked about this before here? I think I published something on this
>years ago, but it remains one of the less-well-known Southernisms, I suspect..
>In a message dated 1/26/04 5:26:33 PM, flanigan at OHIO.EDU writes:
> > Well, I wasn't correct in thinking Lehrer was from Texas either, though
> > close.  But my feeling that "you all" is South Midland (or Upper South, for
> > those who prefer Carver's terms) seems supported, vs. "y'all" in the Deep
> > South.  Most of Kentucky and southern Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, and the
> > states just west of the Mississippi (maybe we should call these West
> > Midland) all seem to have some "you all" in the simple plural sense we've
> > been talking about (not in the emphatic sense of Julia's second
> > letter).  I've adopted it myself and am quite comfortable with it.  But
> > Lehrer's "I thank you all, both" seemed strange to me--explainable to me
> > only by the slight pause before "both," as if to make a
> > self-correction.  He even smiled impishly afterwards.
> >

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