Err...

How do you pronounce the word "err", as in "the action done by humans, as opposed to the divine act of forgiveness"?

I pronounce it one way, but I heard it a different way on the radio. Dictionary.com informs me that one was accepted as correct but the other is gaining ground, to the point where both are now acceptable. Just wondering what the average pronunciation of my readers is...

srah - Monday, 6 March 2006 - 5:31 PM
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Comments (6)

gravatar Erica M - March 6, 2006 - 8:54 PM -

I pronounce it like "air." Which looks to be the second way. I had no idea that my way was not the traditional way.

gravatar Mer Haskell - March 6, 2006 - 9:48 PM -

"air." But I grew up in the South. There I learned many abominations of English.

Actually, Southern English errs (haha) on the side of conservative vowels, I thought. I'm surprised they don't use the more proper version.

gravatar jamelah - March 6, 2006 - 10:19 PM -

Air. The other way just sounds wrong to me, so I guess it's funny that it's actually the correct one.

gravatar srah - March 6, 2006 - 10:39 PM -

I pronounce it "air" too, and I have very rarely heard it the other way. The radio guy pronounced it "ur" which sounded like "er" to me, as though he was searching for the correct word.

gravatar Your ARWYDK - March 6, 2006 - 11:52 PM -

I've always said "air," and I note that Merriam-Webster gives it that way first. Wonder if the dictionary.com pronunciation (which I think is based on American Heritage--they were the ones with the "Usage Panel") is unique to that set of dictionaries.

gravatar Smuj - March 7, 2006 - 7:52 AM -

To err is human. To moo is bovine.

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