"Brit" (OED: 1901)

Geoffrey Nunberg nunberg at ISCHOOL.BERKELEY.EDU
Mon Mar 30 06:46:20 UTC 2009

> From: Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
> Date: March 29, 2009 5:01:46 PM PDT
> Subject: Re: "Brit" (OED: 1901)
> FWIW, "Brit" *still* feels new to me, as a component of AmE.
> -Wilson

It does to me too, not to mention to a fair number of its denotata. I
did a "Fresh Air" piece on "Brit" a couple of years ago (http://people.ischool.berkeley.edu/~nunberg/brits.html
) and recounted this anecdote:

A friend of mine from London tells of first hearing the word when he
arrived in St. Louis to take up a job in 1976. "Are you a Brit?" a
store clerk asked him when he heard his accent. My friend was
completely mystified. "No," he said, "Actually I'm English."



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

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