Fwd: "jazz" and Irish "teas"

Gerald Cohen gcohen at UMR.EDU
Thu Apr 3 02:24:16 UTC 2003

  This is a footnote to the suggestion advanced a week or so ago on
ads-l that "jazz" derives from Irish "teas".  The new message is from
Jim Rader (of Merriam-Webster) and I now share it with his permission.

Gerald Cohen

>Organization: Merriam-Webster Inc.
>To: gcohen at umr.edu
>Date: Fri, 28 Mar 2003 15:51:37 -0500
>Subject: "Jazz" and "teas"
>Reply-to: jrader at Merriam-Webster.com
>Someone in the office directed me to a recent exchange on <jazz> on
>ADS-L. (I dropped off a few years ago but I occasionally check the
>archives.)  The idea that <jazz> is borrowed from Irish <teas> is not
>very plausible.  On a simple phonetic basis there's a mismatch
>because both consonants in <teas> are voiceless in all dialects of Irish.
>Slender <t> is an affricate from about Mayo north, and in Scottish
>Gaelic, but from Connemara south to Munster it's a palatalized [t], very
>similar to Russian soft <t>, but maybe with less fricative release. ...

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