Spurious "Quotes" and Apostrophe's

Pafra & Scott Catledge scplc at GS.VERIO.NET
Sun Sep 19 13:44:10 UTC 1999

When I was in elementary school, we were taught to use a diaeresis over the
e in a word such as ree"valuation or over the o in coo"peration; several
years later my 6th grade teacher responded to a question about umlauts, "The
correct word in English is "diaeresis."  Just English is a Germanic language
does not mean that we speak German here!"   I have not seen a diaeresis in
nontechnical writing since junior high (I consider the " in Noe"l to be a
trema--it is after all a French word).  What a difference a half-century can
make in a language.
 ----- Original Message -----
From: Dennis R. Preston <preston at PILOT.MSU.EDU>
Sent: Saturday, September 18, 1999 8:57 AM
Subject: Re: Spurious "Quotes" and Apostrophe's

> Other marks are fun too. Remember Burger Fre"sh (where the " = umlaut over
> the 'e'). Luckily, even linguists don't know what "e-umlaut" stands for
> (see Pullum and Ladusaw, pp. 42-43)
> dInIs (who ain't got not damn umlauts in his name)
> >Didn't you mean to say "apostrophe's"?  ;{)  Too bad that accents cannot
> >used on the screen by most people--I would love a list of phony accents.
> >favorite was a neon sign at a motel that advertised their night club, the
> >Che/z Bon--the slash being a substitute for the acute accent over the
> >I called it the Chase Bone and, whenever acquaintances corrected me,
> >"It's French," I would respond, "As a former French professor, I can
> >you that it's not.
> >----- Original Message -----
> >From: Grant Barrett <gbarrett at americandialect.org>
> >Sent: Friday, September 17, 1999 7:48 PM
> >Subject: Spurious "Quotes" and Apostrophe's
> >
> >
> >> I know we've talked about spurious "quotes" and apostrophe's before.
> >>
> >> Check out http://www.spinnwebe.com/ for pictures of both. Interesting,
> >funny, sad. Click on  Those Pesky Apostrophe's  and You "Gotta" Love
> >Quotes.
> >>
> >>
> >> --
> >> Grant Barrett
> >>
> >> World New York
> >> http://www.worldnewyork.com/
> Dennis R. Preston
> Professor of Linguistics
> Department of Linguistics and Languages
> Michigan State University
> East Lansing MI 48824-1027 USA
> preston at pilot.msu.edu
> Office: (517)353-0740
> Fax: (517)432-2736

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