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"A Historic " Versus "An Historic"

By
Mignon Fogarty
February 24, 2011

a historic an historicSo many of you asked whether "a historic" should have been "an historic" that I thought I'd better answer the question here, even though it was the topic of last week's Grammar Girl podcast and there was a link to it in the newsletter.

The choice between "a" and "an" is governed by the first sound of the next word. If it's a consonant sound, choose "a"; if it's a vowel sound, choose "an." Although there are regional variations, the standard American pronunciation of "historic" starts with a consonant sound (just like the words "hit," "hipster," and "highlighter"), so the correct choice is "a historic." There's nothing special about "historic" that exempts it from the standard rule. (Read the whole article.)

 

 

 

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