Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 09:42:08 -0500
From: Ron Butters RonButters[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]AOL.COM
Subject: Re: "Hit" (was Appalacian [sic] languages)
My question is, does the metathetical
pronunciation of "ask"
characteristic of AAVE preserve an
earlier form, or does it reflect a
contemporary performance transposition?
Since both ACSIAN and ASCIAN are found in Old English, my guess is that the
variation has always been there. My memory is that one finds both in 19th and
20th century British dialects--i.e., it appears to be widespread and common
throughout history. In ddition, of course, it could continue to be reinforced
by being continually "reinvented" in the child-language acquistion process.
In other words, Terry's question cannot be answered because the situation is
not an either/or one.
By the way (as Don Lance notes), AKS/ASK is not (I think) any more
characteristic of AAVE than of many other contemporary dialects of English.
As for D. Long's question about AST (pres.), this ils certainly common in
white speech in North Carolina. Will someone plese go check Orton and see if
it is found in English dialects as well?