Heard on NOVA:

Charles C Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Thu Jul 28 14:05:05 UTC 2011

Also, as noted by one of the commenters on Arnold's essay, there are the "salmon" words, in which the postvocalic "l" has been inserted in spelling (and often in pronunciation), recovered from the Latin--and therefore more "correct" than the "l"-less French and English forms.


From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of Laurence Horn [laurence.horn at YALE.EDU]
Sent: Thursday, July 28, 2011 9:39 AM

On Jul 28, 2011, at 9:26 AM, Charles C Doyle wrote:

> Up into the 17th century, the spelling "artic" was the norm in English--and "articus" was the most common Latin form (cf. French "artique").  I'm thinking "arctic" was a comparatively late (mid-17th century?) attempt at "correction" on the basis of the Greek word with its "k"?
> —Charlie

So there's a kind of family of etym(yth)ological spellings/spelling pronunciations/scribal variants, including the <b> in "debt", the <th> in "author", the <th> in "Anthony", and so on.  (Others?)  At least the "arcticus" spelling (and presumably the corresponding cluster pronunciation) was around in Latin, even if it had disappeared by the time it got to French.


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