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an historic mistake

March 14, 2013

I see that Ed Miliband has just accused David Cameron of making ‘a historic mistake’  over press regulation. I’ve just watched him say it on a youtube video. That’s fine, there’s no problem there. Yet when I hear this on the BBC news it’s reported as Miliband accusing Cameron of making ‘an historic mistake’ (with the h in ‘historic’ sounded). Why did they change his words? Obviously some lunkhead at the BBC thinks this is the correct form and has taken it upon themselves to put Miliband right. But it’s the BBC lunkhead who is in the wrong: an would only be correct here if the h in historic were silent. Saying an and then also sounding the h is just a mish-mash.

I know I’ve blogged about this before. But it won’t go away. 

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One Comment
  1. It’s a very odd hypercorrection, because it’s not something people will do out loud; it sounds wrong out loud like it should.
    Additionally, it just sort of seems dishonest to report someone as having said something they didn’t; even if “an historic” were technically correct, it’s unfair to make Miliband seem that fusty. Not seeming fusty is important in politics these days; my linguistics lecturer made a point about how David Cameron used to say “stadia”, but, presumably on the advice of image people, later switched to “stadiums”.

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