gist/just eggcorn?

Herb Stahlke hfwstahlke at GMAIL.COM
Tue Jul 16 03:06:49 UTC 2013

"Just" with a barred i seems to occur mostly unstressed, as in "I just
don't see it."  If "just" is stressed in that sentence, I, at least, have
something more like ^.


On Sat, Jun 22, 2013 at 9:52 AM, Charles C Doyle <cdoyle at> wrote:

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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Charles C Doyle <cdoyle at UGA.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: gist/just eggcorn?
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> My (rather pedantic) point was that, as far as I am aware, there exist no
> speakers who rhyme "just" with "grist."  It's just that there's no way to
> represent the "barred-i" vowel in writing!  The minimal threesome here
> would be "just" the adjective [^], "just" the adverb [barred-i], and "gist"
> [I]  (for those who have "gist" in their vocabulary!). Another way of
> suggesting that "just" is unlikey to be a misspelling of "gist."
> --Charlie
> ________________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of
> ADSGarson O'Toole [adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM]
> Sent: Friday, June 21, 2013 11:50 PM
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Victor Steinbok wrote:
> >
> > Two problems with UD. First, as is the case with all UD entries, it is
> > unverifiable and undocumented. Second, it actually suggests that the
> > eggcorn interpretation is correct.
> Thanks for your responses Charlie and Victor.
> I agree with you, Victor, that the Urban Dictionary entry provides
> excellent evidence that "just" is an eggcorn for "gist" in the
> phrases: "the just of it" versus "the gist of it". I posted the UD
> entry to provide fellow list members with evidence supporting the
> eggcorn hypothesis.
>  After the text of the UD entry I included the following line:
> [Begin excerpt from previous post]
> Maybe the rationale for using the word "just" involves obtaining or
> imparting "just enough knowledge"?
> [End excerpt]
> My goal in writing the line above was to elaborate upon the definition
> given in the Urban Dictionary and further explain the nature of the
> eggcorn. I apologize for not communicating effectively.
> An alternative hypothesis would explain the use of "just" by saying
> that it is a spelling error. I attempted to provide evidence for this
> hypothesis also. The spelling of "jist" for "gist" would probably be
> accepted by most people as a spelling error. Yet, we also know that
> some individuals pronounce "just" as "jist". Hence, some people who
> hear the word "gist" spoken might believe that they are hearing the
> word "just". These people might write "just" for "gist".
> These people might make no attempt to connect the conventional
> definition of "just" to this new use of "just". They might view the
> new use of "just" as unrelated to the conventional definition. There
> are many words with multiple seemingly unrelated senses. For these,
> admittedly hypothetical, people "just" is not an eggcorn for "gist".
> In any case, I do think that substituting "just" for "jist" is an
> eggcorn substitution for some people.
> Garson
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