Arnold Zwicky zwicky at STANFORD.EDU
Sun Apr 12 16:01:56 UTC 2009

On Apr 12, 2009, at 8:30 AM, Jesse Sheidlower wrote:

> It's also in DARE, to which I don't have access right now, at the
> airport....

yes, on p. 428 of volume III (I-O), where the entry begins with
the1917 Dialect Notes cite, which says it is "used among school
children for _look!_ and marks it as "apparently recent".  the
material following continues the association with children (but not
exclusively with children) and points out that it can be used merely
to point out something of interest, in an expression of delight (as,
indeed, "look!" can be).

it's not clear when it picked up the use parallel to the discourse
particle "look" -- with its often aggressive tone.  what i think of as
the Rush Limbaugh Lookit.


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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