Tough G uy Phonology

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Fri May 26 12:47:51 UTC 2006

The person addressed is a military chaplain, who has no "church."  The reply is, "I can do with your help, if that's what you mean."

  It is likely that the precise words of the dialogue are fictitious and stereotypical in the first place.


Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU> wrote:
  ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: Laurence Horn
Subject: Re: Tough G uy Phonology

>In a message dated 5/25/06 7:20:43 PM, wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM writes:
>> From the same source :
>> " 'Have youse," he asked the priest (and who shall sneer at the dialect of
>> a warrior, particularly when the warrior is red-headed?)--'Have youse got
>> anybody to soive Mass to-morror [sic], father?' "
>> Note singular "youse."
>> JL
>Couldn't youse be plural in the sense, "You folks who run the church"?
Right, I was thinking it's a lot like some of those "singular"
instances of "y'all" that turn out on closer inspection to be 'you
and the horse you rode in on', or more generally 'you and your
bunch'. Could the red-headed warrior have declared to the priest,
"Father, I hope you don't tink I'm a poiv, but I love youse" ?

The American Dialect Society -

Be a chatter box. Enjoy free PC-to-PC calls  with Yahoo! Messenger with Voice.

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list