sagehen sagehen at WESTELCOM.COM
Mon Apr 10 16:36:30 UTC 2006

>Interesting.  The oddity of "peasants in the Connecticut River
>valley" or "Arkansas peasants" is reminiscent of Bolinger's
>observation that there's something peculiar about "a village in
>Kansas" as opposed to "a village in
>Burgundy/Saxony/Silesia/Lancaster/...".  Not totally impossible, but
>a bit odd.  (Of course we have "Greenwich Village" or "Stonington
>Village", or "(go into) the village" (for '(into) town'), but how
>often do we have "a village" as such in North America?  Maybe we
>don't have peasants because we don't have villages...
But we *do* have villages in the US.  Up here in northern NY, and  --for
all I know -- elsewhere in NY,  "village" is the official designation of
the smallest  jurisdictional unit, as opposed to "towns" which are what are
called "townships" in many other parts of the country.  This was also true
in Ohio.  Some, at least, of the north shore suburbs of Chicago were called
"villages" when I lived there just after WWII, but that may have been an
Except for the occasional self-designation as being of "peasant stock,"
I've never known rural Americans to refer to themselves as "peasants."
A. Murie

The American Dialect Society -

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