OK in the comics

Barbara Need nee1 at MIDWAY.UCHICAGO.EDU
Sun Feb 17 16:05:58 UTC 2008

In Spots (Ask It) in today's Comic section in the Chicago Tribune, a
kid asks: "What does .ok. stand for?"

Spots reply:

Dear Katie,
Theories abound, most unproved. Could be derived from the Choctaw
Indians "okeh" meaning "it is so." Maybe from the Greek "ola kala"
meaning "it is good." Columbia Univ. professor Allen Walker Read
claims it stood for "oll korrect," from an 1830s fas among newspaper
writers. They used initials involving misspellings in stories like KY
for "know yuse," KG for "know go." OK caught on cuz in 1840, Van
Buren, who was running for Prez, was nicknamed "Old Kinderhook" after
the town where he was born. Um ... OK?


Barbara Need

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

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