Randy Leedy Rleedy at
Fri Mar 15 11:06:27 EST 2002

Well, Carl, I'll have to go to the library to get a look at Smyth. The
one classical grammar I have on my shelf, which I hardly ever consult,
is Goodwin, not Smyth. I thought sure I had Smyth. Maybe it was at
home and got misplaced when we moved a year ago? Anyway, if the
further examples you cite are representative of what Smyth discusses,
it's STILL not what I'm looking for. Yes, the formations of various
principal parts of a verb, or stem modifications within a noun
declension involve metathesis. But that's not the kind of metathesis
I'm looking for. I think we're getting wavelengths crossed over a
definition. I'm working with a sense of the word broad enough to
include any transposition of letters at all, not limited to the inner
morphological workings involved in various inflectional patterns. I'm
looking for the kind of thing where a given word would be listed in a
dictionary under two different lemma forms, where the difference in
the lemmas is a transposition of letters. Again, my theoretical
example: PROBATON and PROTABON would be listed in the lexicon
separately. One article would note the variant forms of the same word,
and the other article would probably be a simple "see" reference
pointing to the other one. 

Based on a rhyme with PROBATON, I did dig out of the mental archives
a word with a somewhat similar phenomenon: KRABATTOS / KRABBATOS. But
that's not metathesis, because the issue is not a transposition of
letters but rather a question of which consonant is geminated

I will try to get to Smyth soon to see his examples, but, again, if
your examples reflect the whole range of what Smyth has, he won't have
what I'm looking for. I hope I've finally been adequately clear about
what it is I'm trying to find. If not, I guess I'll just give up
before I get further behind!  (I envy people with the foresight to
give up while they're still ahead.)

Blessings! (Acts 3:26)

Randy Leedy

>>> "Carl W. Conrad" <cwconrad at> 03/15/02 06:33AM
At 10:55 PM -0500 3/14/02, Randy Leedy  wrote:
>What are you doing up so late, Carl?
>I guess I didn't make my question quite clear enough. Or else
>too tired and should go to bed and try again in the morning. :-)

I had just come in from traditional Appalachian music concert and
my mail before turning off the computer. I guess you weren't really
enough, but if you'd been/are able to follow the Smyth refs. you
have/will find what you're looking for--especially since I've
some errors in a couple of them as I copied them last night.

<remainder snipped>

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