[porsh] and other British English (was: Coup de grace)

Beverly Flanigan flanigan at OHIOU.EDU
Thu Jun 10 19:53:48 UTC 2004

I suspect the source of the problem is that we hear these terms more than
we read them.  So, if  the prevailing pronunciation has no 's', and if one
might have heard or seen "foie gras," the 'gras' is carried over to "coup
de gras."  I wonder what people do with "coup d'etat"?  I also suspect none
of these French words have individual meaning for most English speakers
(gras, etat, grace, mardi, even coup); the phrases are just picked up whole.

At 02:08 PM 6/10/2004 -0400, you wrote:
>At 12:25 PM -0500 6/10/04, Sally Donlon wrote:
>>P.S. I also have always thought "coup de gras" had no pronounced "s"
>>on the end.
>"coup de gras" wouldn't.  "coup de grace", on the other hand...
>>We're so used to pronouncing "Mardi Gras" without that "s" that I
>>guess it just
>>carries over for us.
>But we (sometimes) call the latter "Fat Tuesday".  Do people really
>think of the "coup de grace" blow as having some connection with fat?
>I'm not trying to be prescriptive, just wondering what the intuitive
>connections are.

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