[Ads-l] [Non-DoD Source] "Niger" or "Niger"?

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Thu Oct 19 12:33:25 EDT 2017


Maybe "Nyjer" was partly intended to forestall embarrassment and worse.

JL

On Thu, Oct 19, 2017 at 12:31 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
wrote:

> Might as well observe that usu. lower-case "Niger" was the usual pre-1800
> form of you-know-what, though presumably pronounced "NEEgur."
>
> JL
>
> On Thu, Oct 19, 2017 at 11:49 AM, Margaret Winters <mewinters at wayne.edu>
> wrote:
>
>> I had students from there in the 80s and 90s - the pronunciation was the
>> French one [niZer] with the sound in the middle of leisure and their first
>> European language was indeed French.
>>
>>
>> The "Mikado"  predates1900, of course...
>>
>> Margaret
>>
>>
>> ----------------------------
>> MARGARET E WINTERS
>> Former Provost
>> Professor Emerita - French and Linguistics
>> Wayne State University
>> Detroit, MI  48202
>>
>> mewinters at wayne.edu
>>
>>
>>
>> ________________________________
>> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of
>> MULLINS, WILLIAM D (Bill) CIV USARMY RDECOM AMRDEC (US) <
>> william.d.mullins18.civ at MAIL.MIL>
>> Sent: Thursday, October 19, 2017 11:34 AM
>> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
>> Subject: Re: [Non-DoD Source] "Niger" or "Niger"?
>>
>> >
>> > In my day, people said "NYE-jer." Nowadays, except for a courageous
>> journalist in the Rose Garden recently, they're all saying "Nee-ZHAIR."
>> >
>> > Sounds so much  more sophisticated, _non_?
>> >
>> > When was the big switch? The Random House College Dictionary of 1982
>> gives only "NYE-jer."  I first heard Nee-ZHAIR" in the early '80s.
>> >
>> My wife used to buy thistle seeds for her goldfinch feeders.  Then they
>> started calling it Niger seed.  Now it's trademarked as Nyjer .
>>
>> "The name was trademarked as Nyjer ® in 1998 by the Wild Bird Feeding
>> Industry, however, to clarify proper pronunciation (NYE-jerr)."
>> https://www.thespruce.com/nyger-seeds-for-finches-386574
>> Nyjer Seed - Feeding Birds - The Spruce<https://www.thespruce.c
>> om/nyger-seeds-for-finches-386574>
>> www.thespruce.com
>> Nyjer seed, also known as thistle or niger, is a popular seed to offer
>> small birds and finches. But what is it, and which birds will eat it?
>>
>>
>>
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>
>
>
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
>



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