Heard on The Judges: "unrepenetant / unrepenitant / unrepenetent / unrepenitent"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jul 14 20:04:46 UTC 2008

Judge Joe Brown:

"You have three sons who have turned out quite well and the fourth is
an _unrepenetant_ / etc. felon."

1129 Google hits for the four possible spellings randomly selected. A
casual eyeballing suggests that the most common spelling is
"unrepenetent" by far, whatever that may mean. Judge Joe pronounced
the final syllable as [@nt], suggesting that the final syllable is
"-ant" in his phonology, since "-ent" would have yielded [Int]. Of
course, spelling and pronunciation don't necessarily go hand-in-hand
in English.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
 -Sam'l Clemens

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

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