Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Fri Jun 30 04:24:19 UTC 2006

>Prolly a useless comment, given that it's more like whining about a
>pet peeve than like anything else, but I've *always* known that both
>TILL and UNTIL are good English words as long as I've been relatively
>fluent in the English language, ca.sixty years. It's passing strange
>is that people born in the '50's-'80's, seemimgly out of nowhere,

not exactly out of nowhere, since purists have been alternately
complaining for centuries (documented in Dennis Baron's book, if
memory serves) about lazy speakers who persist in lopping the
beginnings and ends of helpless words (like Wilson's people,
complaining about "till" or "bus") or about idle speakers who add
unnecessary, redundant, and superfluous syllables to perfectly good
words (the ones who complain about "unto" and "until").  Of course,
both sects have typically have operated in blithe ignorance of the
actual histories of the words involved.


>  have
>decided that there's something wrong with the spelling or the use of
>TILL without so much as cracking a dictionary or a grammar. As for
>people who can't handle what may be termed "slang spelliings" or even
>"joke spellings" like "nite" and "thru," let them go back to arguing
>that "ain't" ain't a word.

The American Dialect Society -

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