Date: Mon, 29 Nov 1993 23:09:18 EST From: Larry Horn Subject: Re: th/dh Besides the few we've been discussing, I forgot to mention the pattern of adjectives and nouns with final -th that alternate with verbs with final -dh (spelled -the): mouth vs. mouthe loath vs. loathe wreath vs. wreathe There are probably other pairs that participate in this pattern, in some cases subject to dialectal and idiolectal variation, considering how marginal some of these lexical items are. (Other potential pairs are of course wrecked by the vowel shift: bath/bathe, breath/breathe,...) In any case, the situation with th/dh pairs is a lot more robust that what we find with sh/zh (voiceless/voiced palatal fricatives). The best I've ever come up with here is Confucian/confusion, while other would-be pairs involve either proper names invoked for the occasion (Asher/azure), marginal instances of productive word-formation (mesher/measure), or near-minimal pairs that don't quite get there (pressure/pleasure, thresher/treasure). Can anybody do better? Larry Horn