"Real McKay"

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Thu Jun 22 22:47:16 UTC 2006

So now we have "real Mackay" from 1856 in Scotland, and "real McCoy" from
1891 in Manitoba.  The logical transitional spelling would be "real McKay"
in Manitoba between 1856 and 1891, and indeed there is an example of this
in Newspaperarchive from the very same Manitoba newspaper:

1875 _Manitoba Daily Free Press_ 8 Dec. 3 (Newspaperarchive)  The annual
meeting of the St. Andrew's Society was held in the schoolhouse, Portage
in Prairie, on the 30th ult. ... [long list of Scottish toasts and songs
mentioned] ... Songs followed, and a recitation, The real McKay, by Mr.

I acknowledge that the above suggested progression of spellings may be too
neat, with the truth perhaps being more random.

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE BOOK OF QUOTATIONS
   Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press,
Yale Law School                             forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu               http://quotationdictionary.com

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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