TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Re: "Ms." or "Ms"? From:Andreas Ramos <andreas -at- NETCOM -dot- COM> Date:Wed, 9 Mar 1994 17:43:01 -0800
On Wed, 9 Mar 1994, Vicki Rosenzweig wrote:
> Yes, we have dictionaries. Mine informs me, among other
> things, that the Middle English "tit" meaning small
> is "assumed," meaning there's no direct documentation,
> and, more to the point, that "tit" in the sense of a
> breast is derived from "teat" meaning nipple, which
> in turn comes from an Old English root, and connects
> it to a couple of other Germanic words. No connection
> to "small." Also, maybe "tit" in Sacramento means
> "nipple," but in New York it means "breast," and breasts
> aren't particularly small.
I pointed out to the original author of the "tit" discussion that "tit"
in American English has come to mean "breast". This is usually plural,
as in "those tits". This is however a popular definition; the tit refers
only to the nipple. British spell it as "teat". My American Heritage
Dictionary defines tit as 1) nipple and 2) (vulgar) breast. Your
understanding of "tit" is thus only 2). And the dictionary was
published.. let me see... yep! NYC, NY. Your neck of the woods!
If you don't think that "tit" (as in small) has nothing to do with small,
then a titmouse is a nipple-mouse? :)
I'd hate to think how your dictionary defines a titman! :)
Are you perhaps looking in Playboy's Unabashed Dictionary? :)
I can't wait for the reply!
Andreas Ramos, M.A. Heidelberg Sacramento, California