Date: Fri, 16 Jun 1995 10:04:33 -0600
From: Bruce Gelder bgelder[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]CAMEL.SIM.ES.COM
Subject: Re: Fwd: Re(2): Yankee?
The Merriam-Webster New Book of Word Histories devotes four pages to the
etymology of "yankee," discussing many theories about its origin that
have been proposed over the years, including the Dutch "Jan Kees" theory
that was quoted here from Barnhart. It states that the "Jan Kees" theory
"has drawn the approval of more philologists...than any other theory [but
that] it is not without its difficulties, however. _Kees_, regardless of
its spelling, must have sounded like _case_ when pronounced in Dutch.
And two-part nicknames in Dutch seem to receive their main stress on the
second part, while _Yankee_ has first-syllable stress." The book asserts
that the origin of the word "is still uncertain."
It's an interesting read, for anyone who's interested.