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  1. Unregistered
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    #1

    Angry The letter H

    Are children being taught in school to pronounce the name of the letter H as haitch or aitch

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    #2

    Re: The letter H

    It is "aitch" where I live.

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    #3

    Re: The letter H

    I think it depends on their teacher and where they live- they'll pick up the version they hear.

  2. #4

    Re: The letter H

    I was not taught one way or the other and I suspect it isn't now. The mispronunciation of the letter H is rather like the misuse of the apostrophe. People either do not know and guess or just don't care. It certainly should be pronounced 'aitch', but in these days when wrong is the new right it will probably evolve into 'haitch'.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: The letter H

    Quote Originally Posted by Bounty Hunter View Post
    I was not taught one way or the other and I suspect it isn't now. The mispronunciation of the letter H is rather like the misuse of the apostrophe. People either do not know and guess or just don't care. It certainly should be pronounced 'aitch', but in these days when wrong is the new right it will probably evolve into 'haitch'.
    How did your teachers teach you the alphabet without naming the letters. I'm confused.


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    #6

    Re: The letter H

    H is pronounced "haitch" in my classes. Only in areas where they say 'ome, 'otel and 'ospital, do they teach "aitch".

  4. #7

    Re: The letter H

    'Haitch' is certainly incorrect. I was taught what sound the letters made but not how to pronounce them.

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    #8

    Re: The letter H

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind View Post
    H is pronounced "haitch" in my classes. Only in areas where they say 'ome, 'otel and 'ospital, do they teach "aitch".
    Well, that's definitely not the generally agreed formal standard anywhere I've ever been. Certainly where I came from (the Westcountry) it was home, hotel and hospital; but 'onour, 'our and aitch.

    And so say (amongst others) the Random House dictionary, the American Heritage dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Webster's New World... and I haven't even started on the British dictionaries.

    "Haitch" is occasionally heard in some southern English dialects, especially those famous for "dropping their aitches". It appears to be some form of hypercorrection (think of poor Eliza Doolittle saying "In 'Ampshire, 'Artfordshire and 'Erefordshire, 'urricanes 'ardly hever 'appen").

  6. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: The letter H

    Quote Originally Posted by Bounty Hunter View Post
    'Haitch' is certainly incorrect. I was taught what sound the letters made but not how to pronounce them.
    You never recited the ABCs outloud in class? I find that odd.

    I cannot find "haitch" in any dictionary. It certainly is not common in the US, but I've heard it from Irish Americans. It is probably a dialectal pronunciation.

    Here is a bit on origin:



    Is the letter H represented by the word aitch, or is it haitch ?
    The Oxford English Dictionary specifies only aitch as the correct spelling, and omits haitch entirely. So if you thought aitch should have been haitch, you are a complete plonker, as thick as s--t.
    But that doesn't take account of the fact that an awful lot of people in the UK, and other English speaking parts of the world, do say haitch, and have even been taught that it is the correct way to pronounce the letter H.
    The origins of haitch appear to be Irish, and has mainly survived through teachings in Roman Catholic schools. It's also in quite common usage amongst Londoners, who while prone to dropping the H from the front of most words, are want to add it in haitch. Admittedly it does seem to be rather regional, but if the OED is happy enough to take on colloquial words, and many which most of us have never even heard of, be they from before the Ark or newly invented, then why doesn't haitch have its place also ?

    Testing The Nation

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    #10

    Re: The letter H

    What about Z? I pronounce it as zed not zee.
    Last edited by curmudgeon; 25-Nov-2006 at 02:29.

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