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Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Subject:||The word 'hi'|
|Question:||What is the origin the word 'hi'? Also, as a word, is it globally recognised?|
|Reply:||Hi, James, The Online Etymological Dictionary (http://www.etymonline.com/index.php? allowed_in_frame=0&search=hi&searchmode=none) gives a first reference to the word in American English from 1862, which citation is from the speech of a 'Kansas Indian'. They also suggest it is probably ultimately from Middle English hy or hey, used to draw attention. I use it all the time (as you can see), though I can't attest to its geographical distribution (perhaps principally in the U. S., but likely rather more extended). I believe I have also heard it in Canada, but I can't swear to that. Jim James L. Fidelholtz Graduate Program in Language Sciences Instituto de Ciencias Sociales y Humanidades Benem'erita Universidad Aut'onoma de Puebla, M'EXICO|
|Reply From:||James L Fidelholtz click here to access email|