GBooks and "verklempt" before 1992

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Mon Jun 4 16:33:33 UTC 2012

On Mon, Jun 4, 2012 at 11:13 AM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
> For what it's worth -- very little, I expect -- the earliest
> verklempt among the 13 (which become 11) is 1992, a snippet from
> something anonymous called "Sassy".  Probably the "journal",
> 1988--1996, "absorbed" by 'Teen.  (Harvard and GBooks agree that the
> publisher was Fairfax.)  GBooks gives a page 225, but no month;
> perhaps its document is an annual collection.

It's believable that it showed up in "Sassy" in 1992, since the word
was first popularized in the '91-'92 season of SNL, when Mike Myers
introduced his Linda Richman character for the "Coffee Talk" series of
sketches. The first one aired on 10/12/91 (with Kirstie Alley), and
the second on 2/22/92 (with Madonna and Roseanne):


Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society -

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