[Ads-l] "VERB at straws"

Margaret E. Winters mewinters at WAYNE.EDU
Thu Sep 22 09:08:26 EDT 2016

I was intrigued by 'eh' 'hein' and checked the OED which says that 'eh' was around in Middle English, spelled 'ey'.  The OED suggests the spelling might be influenced by the French 'eh', but there is no mention of 'hein', quebecois or French of France.


On Leave
Office of the Provost
Wayne State University
Detroit, MI  48202

mewinters at wayne.edu

From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of W Brewer <brewerwa at GMAIL.COM>
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2016 10:38 PM
Subject: Re: "VERB at straws"

RH:  <<Shouldn't those pearls be clasped rather than clutched before
they're cast
before swine like us?  >>

WB:  But, to cast this in Vulgar terms, as Our Lord advised, << Ne mittate
margaritas vestras ante porcos! >>, i.e. "Don't hurl yer margaritas in
front of pigs!" Mais, ça va sans dire, hein?
     And so I take this opportunity to cohesively digress to the burning
question that has mouldered away in my breast for some time now:  Could
Québécois <hein?> be the source of Canadian English <eh?>?  Ah gotsta know.

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