molasses sg/pl - dialectal variation?

Mark Mandel thnidu at GMAIL.COM
Sun Apr 5 00:11:10 UTC 2009

On Sat, Apr 4, 2009 at 7:46 PM, Douglas G. Wilson <douglas at> wrote:
> In DARE: v. 3, p. 633: under "molasses", sec. B:
> <<Also rarely _molassisis_: used as pl count noun. *chiefly S Midl* Cf
> *cabbage A2, cheese A* [followed by exx. 1843-1989]>>
> Apparently in Appalachia, Ozarks, etc. "cabbage" is often construed as
> plural ... also "tomato", and "cheese" (hence the singular "chee").
> -- Doug Wilson

The back-formation of chee < cheese is obvious, but does anyone have a
clue about where the plural cabbage and tomato come from?

m a m

The American Dialect Society -

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