EYE DIALECT. A term first used by George P. Krapp in The English Language in America (1925) for how colloquial usage appears in print; spellings in which ‘the convention violated is one of the eyes, not of the ear’ (Krapp). Thus, spellings like enuff enough, wimmin women, animulz animals, indicate that those represented as using them are uneducated, youthful, rustic, or otherwise unlike the readership. In Krapp's definition, DIALECT writers use eye dialect not ‘to indicate a genuine difference of pronunciation, but the SPELLING is merely a friendly nudge to the reader, a knowing look which establishes a sympathetic sense of superiority between the author and reader as contrasted with the humble speaker of dialect’. The term is sometimes extended to include both ‘dialect’ spellings and spellings based on pronunciation in a variety of English, as with Kanajan Canadian, Murrican American, Strine Australian. Eye dialect is an important element in humorous dictionaries and glossaries which poke fun at varieties of English: Awreddy already (Eh, Goondu!, Singapore, 1982), Baked Necks bacon and eggs (Lets Stalk Strine, Australia, 1965), Fairy Nuff fair enough (Bristle with Pride, Bristol, England, 1987), pannyhos pantihose (More How to Speak Southern, US, 1980), yidownsay you don't say (Ah Big Yaws, South Africa, 1973). See KING'S ENGLISH.
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