[Ads-l] Seen

Margaret Winters mewinters at WAYNE.EDU
Sat Aug 8 14:11:01 EDT 2020


We lived with my grandparents and they and my mother spoke Yiddish until I was about 7when we lost my grandmother, not only to mask things from my sister and me.  But Yiddish doesn't seem to influence the preposition variation.

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MARGARET E WINTERS
Former Provost
Professor Emerita - French and Linguistics
Wayne State University
Detroit, MI  48202

mewinters at wayne.edu


________________________________
From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
Sent: Saturday, August 8, 2020 2:03 PM
To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
Subject: Re: Seen

Our household was only Yiddish speaking when my brother and I weren’t supposed to understand something, and then only fragments with lots of English code-switched in.  But I’m beginning to doubt my memory; “sick in the stomach” doesn’t seem that bad at the moment (“sick in my stomach” seems less likely), but maybe I’m just thinking of “sick in the head”, which was fine—at least as an insult.


> On Aug 8, 2020, at 1:55 PM, Margaret Winters <mewinters at WAYNE.EDU> wrote:
>
> I just looked the expression up in two English-Yiddish dictionaries to see if the prepositional difference for two NYC speakers was somehow linked to Yiddish speaking households (mine was when I was very young).  It didn't help - Weinreich has 'sick in (!) the stomach' and Schaechter has 'sick to the stomach' but neither Yiddish equivalent has a preposition at all.  Ah well, 'twas an idea...
>
> Margaret
>
> ----------------------------
> MARGARET E WINTERS
> Former Provost
> Professor Emerita - French and Linguistics
> Wayne State University
> Detroit, MI  48202
>
> mewinters at wayne.edu
>
>
> ________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
> Sent: Saturday, August 8, 2020 1:48 PM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Subject: Re: Seen
>
> I had that one too, but I’m not sure if the variation was free or conditioned (and if so, on what).
>
>
>
>> On Aug 8, 2020, at 1:47 PM, Margaret Winters <mewinters at WAYNE.EDU> wrote:
>>
>> Interesting, Larry - I'm only a couple of years younger, also NYC and the only expression I knew was (and continued to be until this discussion came up here) 'sick to my stomach'.
>>
>> best to all,
>> Margaret
>>
>> ----------------------------
>> MARGARET E WINTERS
>> Former Provost
>> Professor Emerita - French and Linguistics
>> Wayne State University
>> Detroit, MI  48202
>>
>> mewinters at wayne.edu
>>
>>
>> ________________________________
>> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
>> Sent: Saturday, August 8, 2020 1:45 PM
>> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Subject: Re: Seen
>>
>> Hmmm.  I grew up with “sick at my stomach” (or more generally “sick at one’s stomach” as in the DARE entry.  Not familiar with “sick at the stomach”.  I like Kurath’s note:
>>
>>> In southern New England and in
>>> Greater New York City at is now fairly common among younger and cultured
>>> persons.
>>
>> That was me in 1949, a very cultured younger speaker in NYC at age 4, not infrequently sick at his stomach.
>>
>> LH
>>
>>
>>> On Aug 8, 2020, at 1:08 AM, Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>> DARE has "sick at one’s stomach" (and variants including "sick at the
>>> stomach") under the entry for "at" and labels it "widespread exc North,
>>> though gaining currency throughout US." The relevant map from the DARE
>>> surveys of 1965-70 shows the usage was indeed widespread at the time,
>>> though I wonder if it has been "gaining currency" since then or receding.
>>>
>>> Map: https://www.daredictionary.com/view/maps/atprep2map.png
>>>
>>> From the "at" entry:
>>>
>>> 2 in phr _sick at one’s stomach_ and varr: Nauseated. widespread exc North,
>>> though gaining currency throughout US
>>> 1731 in 1906 Essex Inst. Coll. 42.224 MA, I am something better to day than
>>> yesterday at my Stomack.
>>> 1882 Sweet & Knox Texas Siftings 80 (DAE), When he is sick at his stomach .
>>> . he goes to Col. Andrews for advice.
>>> 1949 Kurath Word Geog. 78, _At the stomach_ is usual in all of the South
>>> and the Midland and is not uncommon in Greater New York City, Connecticut,
>>> and Rhode Island. In the greater part of New England and the rest of the
>>> Northern area it is exceedingly rare. . . In southern New England and in
>>> Greater New York City at is now fairly common among younger and cultured
>>> persons.
>>> 1965-70 DARE
>>> Qu. BB16a, If something a person ate didn’t agree with him, he might be
>>> sick __ his stomach
>>> 408 Infs, widespread exc Nth, At; DC1, DE6, GA59, LA18, 25, 31, 40, At the;
>>> NV8, At the belly; LA2, At the craw; MO20, At the tummy;
>>> Qu. BB16b
>>> Infs IN54, LA8, OK18, Sick at his stomach; MO39, OH42, Sick at the stomach;
>>> CA212, Upset at the stomach;
>>> Qu. BB17
>>> Infs CA209, CO33, DE6, GA59, MI62, MO29, NJ9, VA42, (Be) sick at his (or
>>> the, your) stomach;
>>> Qu. H69
>>> Inf TX91, Makes me sick at my stomach;
>>> Qu. II29b
>>> Infs IN45, VA58, Makes me sick at my (or the) stomach.
>>>
>>> On Sat, Aug 8, 2020 at 12:07 AM Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> In the last, long-leaping line an NYT book-review by a native of New
>>>> Orleans:
>>>>
>>>> "... sick at the stomach." I.e. "nauseated."
>>>>
>>>> This is the phrase that I grew up using in East Texas. Never seen it in
>>>> print afore.
>>>>
>>>> https://nyti.ms/3gEkdHZ
>>>>
>>>>
>>>
>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>>
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>> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>
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>
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> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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