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When Grammar Meets History 
10th-Jan-2012 01:17 pm
Poll #1809772 Grammar Meets History

When describing a place, like a city, state or country, which in your opinion is grammatically correct? (E.G.: "Welcome to _________ Philadelphia.")

either is fine
Something else (what?)

Same question as above, but also, what is the correct article? (E.G.: "This is ___ __________ occasion."

a historic
an historic
a historical
an historical
either adjective is correct, the correct article is "a"
either adjective is correct, the correct article is "an"
either article is correct, the correct adjective is "historic"
either article is correct, the correct adjective is "historical"
any of the first four options is fine
something else (what?)
10th-Jan-2012 09:52 pm (UTC)
I was taught it's an historic, but that sounds awful every time I hear it. Same with attorneys general.
10th-Jan-2012 11:00 pm (UTC)
I always hear people say "an historic", but I was taught that you only use "an" if the next word begins with a vowel. Things that make you go hmmm.
11th-Jan-2012 03:20 pm (UTC)
I thought it was the sound of the word, not the letter it began with. That said, I say historic with an "h" sound, so I said "a historic" but I say hour without the "h" sound, so I say "an hour."
12th-Jan-2012 01:45 am (UTC)
You;re probably right, that makes sense (especially your example of "hour." Do who pronounces it 'istoric?
13th-Jan-2012 12:59 am (UTC)
I always thought that was a UK thing. Maybe it's regional?
10th-Jan-2012 10:23 pm (UTC)
1. Both are fine grammatically, but historic sounds better to me.

2. All are fine grammatically. "An historic" is what sounds natural to me, and in print I would always go with "an" rather than "a." Orally, the article depends on the degree to which the h is pronounced.
11th-Jan-2012 12:10 am (UTC)
I don't care what the official rules say, unless you live in a region where you don't pronounce your H's, "historic" starts with a consonant sound and thus "a historic" should be correct, because if you're pronouncing the H properly, "an historic" sounds utterly stupid.
11th-Jan-2012 03:26 am (UTC)
Just so.
13th-Jan-2012 01:02 am (UTC)
Everyone I know says "a historic" because we pronounce the H. I've only heard "an historic" from people outside the US. It used to not make sense to me until I'd heard/read it several times.
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