Monday, June 14, 2010

A Brief Retraction

In my poetry post "Let's All Write A Triolet" I repeated a piece of information from Ron Padgett's book Handbook of Poetic Forms.  It was this:
"A triolet (pronouced "tree-oh-lay")..."  
or so says Ron Padgett.  Apparently there is more than a little debate on this topic.  Stephen Fry wisely offers both pronunciations in his poetry textbook.   I was simply repeating information provided by Mr. Padgett (I assume not pronounced "Pad-jay") completely unawares of any controversy existing on the matter and if pressed would probably have assumed that it is a French form and you know how the French are with their "et"s.

But it turns out that the Oxford English Dictionary, which many (me included) refer to as the end all authority on matters of the English language, lists the "rhymes with 'violet'" pronunciation.  I am more than willing to retract and recant when I feel that I have related spurious information.  I think anyone with intellectual honesty ought to be capable of admitting to and correcting their missteps for the sake of truth.  I hereby retract my earlier pronunciation guide.

I would, at the very least, point out that it is a matter of some debate, but still I must go with the OED.  I am truly sorry if I've caused anyone to embarrass themselves at a cocktail party.  I hope that no one will eschew Padgett's otherwise solid text over this little oversight.

1 comment:

  1. Sigh. Laurie informs me that "rhymes with 'violet'" suggests that it would be pronounced "try-oh-let." So let me make this clear. "Tree-oh-lett."