I got stuck on auto-repeat the other day, saying the same word over and over again until it didn’t make any sense.
The word: roof.
My paternal grandfather pronounced it ËˆruÌ‡f, like the sound a barking dog makes or something very much akin to “rough”.
I tend to say it ËˆrÃ¼f, although both forms are acceptable.
Much like Jon Lovitz and “tartlets”, the word had lost all meaning
The more I thought about the disparity of our pronunciations, the more I wondered: what is the correct plural form of the word roof? Roofs sounded correct when I spoke or spelled it, but rooves seemed to fit into the rules of the English language.
I immediately started a draft of this blog post and came up with this initial list:
- Hoof/Hooves (also hoofs)
Why not Roof/Rooves?
I don’t have online access to the Oxford English Dictionary but it purports that the rooves form is “archaic”.
Other nouns that end in the letter “f” but are regular plurals:
Maybe all the irregular forms will become regular at some point. I certainly don’t find it strange to say (but maybe to spell) “thiefs” or “halfs” but maybe that’s just me.
Interesting note: “dwarfs” is actually the accepted form, unless you’re J.R.R. Tolkien.