gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Wed Jan 18 20:24:20 UTC 2012
I have a tendency to forget that Googling in general does not include Google Books.
A memoir of the life and writings of the late William Taylor of Norwich, Robert Southey, Sir Walter Scott (http://ow.ly/8yeIk)
But still such things are more easily produced than ' Madoc': a common magician can make snow-people, but flesh and blood must be the work of a Demiurgos.
Whisperings from life's shore: a bright shell for children, S. W. L. (S. W. Landor) (http://ow.ly/8yfs2)
Do you know the little Snow people?
3. 1850 or 1852
The Snow-Image by Nathaniel Hawthorne has "snow-people." It was written in 1852 according to Wikipedia (http://ow.ly/8yeiS). The citation below (http://ow.ly/8yetc) has a hyphen, but it's at the end of the line. The citation at http://ow.ly/8yezc has the hyphen in the middle of the page, and Google Books claims it's from 1850.
Warm milk will not be wholesome for our little snow-sister. Little snow-people, like her, eat nothing but icicles.
Like the use in the Frosty show and probably Mister Rogers' Neighborhood as below, however, these refer to fanciful snowpeople, not the mundane sort created by mere mortals on snowy days. I will save that for another snowy day (unless someone else is feeling snowily inclined to do so).
On Jan 18, 2012, at 11:10 AM, Benjamin Barrett wrote:
> With Seattle under a huge blanket of snow (for Seattle), I turned to the OED to find out about snowpeople. Neither the OED nor the AHD have "snowperson." Wiktionary has it, along with snowman and snowwoman though without citations.
> While we don't see snowpeople on a yearly basis here in Seattle, I've used "snowperson" for many years when applicable because it seems odd to identify sexless and female figures as men. I believe my twelve-year-old niece uses the word as well. My dog walker did, though, advise me this morning to make a snowman.
> The query ("snowperson" OR "snowpeople") gets 1.1 million raw Googits.
> According to http://www.neighborhoodarchive.com/mrn/episodes/1245/index.html, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood introduced a Snow People opera in 1972 (not likely I watched it as Mr. Rogers was passé then for my age group). Searching on that site reveals other snow people episodes.
> According to http://christmas-specials.wikia.com/wiki/Frosty's_Winter_Wonderland, the 1976 "Frosty's Winter Wonderland" discusses snowpeople.
> The word does not get many hits until the period between 1995 and 2000 and usage skyrockets after that.
> For ("snow person" OR "snow people"), there is a book "Snow Magic" published in 1988 that talks about snow people (http://www.worldcat.org/title/snow-magic/oclc/018622345). The chronological use of this spelling patterns in a way similar to the spelling without the space.
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
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