Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Wed May 26 17:33:18 UTC 2010

Wilson, both "heighth" and "drouth" were my pronunciations growing up in eastern Texas in the 1950s and 1960s.

I remember years ago (probably c1970) I was discussing the point with Ed Finegan, who suggested (regarding "heighth") that a dyslexic spelling-pronunciation was involved. I assume he was joking. The "-th" nominalizations are historically normal ("depth," "tilth," etc.); what needs to be explained is their sporadic loss in other dialects.


---- Original message ----
>Date: Tue, 25 May 2010 23:48:13 -0400
>From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> (on behalf of Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>)
>I clearly remember the *spelling* "drouth" as standard in the East
>Texas and even the Saint Louis of my youth. Indeed, I still find it
>surprising that you never see _drouth_, anymore, because it used to
>be, IME, much more common than _drought_. That is, the spelling,
>"drouth," was once the cat's meow. But the only pronunciation that I
>can recall is the standard one. OTOH, in East Texas, _height_, though
>so spelled, was always pronounced as though spelled "highth," with a
>final thorn.

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