Date: Thu, 10 Nov 1994 15:24:43 -0800

From: Judith Rascoe boise[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]WELL.SF.CA.US

Subject: where did _this_ come from?

In an American textbook, "The New Business Arithmetic", 1906, I came

across a set of questions all framed in the same form:

'What cost 218 gallons of syrup at 50cents per gallon?'

'What cost 26840 yards of calico at 8 1/3 cents per yard?'

The "What cost [sub]" is grammatically correct, but it seems very archaic

even for l906. Or was it? Can anybody explain this usage? The numerous

very-American items mentioned in the book lead me to believe it's not a

translation from another language.