Date: Thu, 17 Jul 1997 16:03:59 -0400

From: Jesse T Sheidlower jester[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]PANIX.COM

Subject: Re: Bade, long and short

I've been asked -

Is the pronunciation of bade (past tense of bid) controversial? . . . . Is


a dialect issue, a class issue, or a thing indifferent? Is long a driving

out short a?

My answer is that

DARE is silent on this; has no entry for bid (v) or bade at all. Nor have I

heard of any such controversy. I suspect there's a modern spelling

pronunciation encroaching on a traditional one.

But have I missed something? Is there patterned variation, or controversy?

There is indeed something of a controversy about this. The older

form is /baed/ (that is, with an ash, homophonic with _bad_ 'not

good'). Older dictionaries (W2, Century) list only this pronuncation;

Fowler 1926 and Evans 1957 specify it as well. I think that the pronunciation

/beid/ (rhyming _made_) is quite common today, and is probably increasing

in frequency. The /beid/ pronunciation is, I assume, a

spelling pronunciation; usage conservatives regard it as an error.

Jesse Sheidlower