Heard on The Judges: "_for_ to"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Wed Aug 5 01:28:00 UTC 2009

Damn! I hate when this happens! I usually try to keep in mind that the
fact that black people may use a given syntactic structure all of the
time still leaves the occurrence of said structure a rarity. The
"fuck-over" syndrome strikes again!


On Tue, Aug 4, 2009 at 12:30 PM, Arnold Zwicky<zwicky at stanford.edu> wrote:
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Arnold Zwicky <zwicky at STANFORD.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Heard on The Judges: "_for_ to"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> On Aug 4, 2009, at 7:35 AM, Wilson Gray wrote:
>> Late-teen-aged, black male college student from Ohio, using
>> Northern-BE phonology, i.e. r-ful, "right" [raIt]:
>> "I went to college _for_ to do the right thing."
>> I know that the continued use of "for to" is hardly startling, but the
>> fact that it was used by such a young, Northern person I thought might
>> be of peripheral interest.
> i'm away from my copy of DARE, and failed to locate an entry for "for
> to" by searching DARE on-line... so can anyone report on what's known
> about the social and regional distribution of "for to" in current
> English?  (the OED is, of course, not of much use here, since it gives
> older examples and merely reports that the usage is obsolete "in
> educated use".)
> arnold
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