Au jus

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Jan 23 19:43:07 UTC 2012

On Jan 23, 2012, at 2:33 PM, Geoffrey Steven Nathan wrote:

> The problem is that the original L1 word is an [o], mid tense back rounded vowel, and for most Americans the vowel in 'owe' would suffice.
>'s spelled funny (by American standards) and for those who have not merged /ah/ and /oh/ (to use Labov's symbols) would pronounce it to rhyme with 'law'. And those who have the merger would also pronounce it to rhyme with 'law' (and also with 'la..a note to follow so').
> About the vowel in the second word (IPA [y]) the less said the better…
I think another problem is the meaning.  In French, the "au" of "au jus" is of course a portmanteau of "a' le" (where <a'> is an ad hoc rendering of <a> with an "accent grave"), corresponding to "a' la" as in "a' la mode", "a' la carte", etc. or the "a l'+V" as in "a' l'anglaise".  Since the "au" of "au jus" is not only morphologically related to these "a'" forms but also semantically, it may be being assimilated to the phonetics of "a'" as well, a' la "a' jus" (modulo the mutilation of the high front rounded [y], as Geoff warns).


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