"Going on a binge"?

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon Apr 20 23:10:00 UTC 2009

I've been to the Binger Weinfest and there was nothing about it to
suggest it as the source of an English word with a different
pronunciation - _Bi[N]en_, best-nown as the home of die heilige
Hildegard von, vs. _bin[dS]_. The Bernkasteller Weinfest - where a
little kid shouted, "Kuck, Mutti! Ein Mohr!" - is a much bigger deal
with better wine and is only a trivial distance from the twin towns of

It's true that an English-speaker with no knowledge of German
whatsoever might would think that Bingen is pronounced as though
spelled "Binjin." But, somehow, I can't feature an American who would
bother to go a third-rate Weinfest in a German backwater and yet have
no concept of how the name of the backwater is pronounced.

People just make this stuff up.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

On Mon, Apr 20, 2009 at 1:46 PM, Joel S. Berson <Berson at att.net> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender: Â  Â  Â  American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster: Â  Â  Â  "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject: Â  Â  Â "Going on a binge"?
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> A correspondent writes:
> If am not mistaken, GOING ON A BINGE "getting very drunk" comes from
> taking a trip to Bingen on the Rhine, near the Rheingau, one of the
> most sublime wine-growing regions in the world.
> Is he mistaken? Â The OED merely says of binge n.2 "[Special use of
> dial. binge to soak (a wooden vessel).]"
> Joel
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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