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Say aitch or I'll scream

by: Garry Pierrepont (23 November 2010)

It always astonishes me the abuse that the letter H takes in our language; mainly in the way we speak.

It is somewhat ironic that the word for the letter H does not begin with H, Iíll admit, but that is the fact. For those in any doubt (sadly, they're probably not reading this!) it is not "haitch"; it is aitch.

A 15-year-old daughter of a friend of mine refused to believe there was a word for the letter H, until I showed it her in a dictionary: "aitch: the letter H".

The advent of HD television has exacerbated its abuse. So we have "Haitch D TV" thrust down our throats interminably, and I can't help but scream at the poor TV every time! Even people on the BBC get it wrong Ė per-lease!

It is also ironic that it is the same people who go out of their way to drop the poor H from the beginning of words (e.g. "I'll 'ave 'alf.") who also take a similar misbegotten path to put the poor cross-pieced letter at the front of the word itself! Oh dear!

It's so much easier to say aitch rather than "haitch", isnít it?

Give our H a break, please.

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