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Gemini6Ice
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Postby Gemini6Ice » Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:07 pm

fodroy wrote:
Generic wrote:Don't quote me on this, but I think there's an ambiguous exception for words beginning with H, so my english teacher can sound all smart-like and say "He is an historian."

gah! i hate when people do that! i hate it! i hate it! i hate it!


If e's pronouncing it "is-tour-ee-in," then "an" is fine, imho. If this teacher has to pause for a split-second to re-orient eir mouth between the "n" and the "h" sounds, then e is just pretty pretentious. :/ :P
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Spud
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Postby Spud » Fri Oct 22, 2004 8:10 am

You don't have to be British to say "an historian".

Say the following phrase three times fast:

"An apple, and egg, and an onion."

If you didn't end up saying "A n'apple, a n'egg, and a n'union.", I'll give you a buck.

It's the same with an historian (A n'istorian)

How do you know when to do it this way? If you can't figure out when it just SOUNDS right, you can use the following rule for words starting with 'h':

If the emphasis is on the first syllable (and for one-syllable words), use 'a':

a hamhock
a hellstorm
a helium balloon

If the emphasis is on the second syllable, or if the 'h' is normally silent, use "an":

an heraldic crest
an herbivore
an historian

You can trust this information, because I am Spud, and I say so.

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