[Ads-l] a can of whoop-ass

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Wed Aug 12 05:17:30 UTC 2015

On Tue, Aug 11, 2015 at 6:14 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
> "...can of whoop-de-ass"

I've heard only "whup-ass," for the past sixty years. I prefer the
traditional spelling. Since there's nothing in the rules of English
orthography that precludes the spelling of [^] as _oo_,  there can be no
argument other than tradition for the preference of _whup_. But no less a
light than Robert Gover, whose command of Negroid speech-patterns is equal
to that of the great Joel Chandler Harris, at the very least, also opts for
_whup_. One cannot beat that with a sludge-hammer.

The Musical Banquet of Choice Songs - Page 69
1790 - ‚ÄéRead
A Norlan' laird neist trotted up, Wi' bassen'd nag, and siller whup...

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

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

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