When -OT is [ət]
In reading some instructions for building a 3-tier strawberry bed, I came across the word spiget.
At first I thought it was some specialized gardening term. Then I figured out that the writer was referring to a spigot.
Spigot is one of several English words in which the spelling -ot is pronounced [ət] at the end of the word.
spigot [spĭg’ət] – faucet, like the one your tap water comes out of, or the one you attach your garden hose to. It also refers to the projection on a cask or box of wine that the liquid comes through.
bigot (bĭg’ət) – originally a religious fanatic, but now any “person characterized by obstinate, intolerant, or strongly partisan beliefs (OED).”
In cruising the web I came across the expression bigot spigot. Apparently the term has been coined to describe purveyors of intolerant partisan opinion.
faggot, fagot [făg’ət] – both spellings are seen, but the first is more common. The word is used with various meanings. The original meaning is “a bundle of sticks.” Now it is also used to refer to a bundle of herbs. The word became associated with religious heretics because bundles of sticks were used to burn them at the stake. “To fry a faggot” was to burn a heretic. Before faggot became a derogatory term for a homosexual, it was used as an insulting term for a woman: ‘Urry up wi’ that glass o’ beer, you lazy faggot! (example from OED)
maggot (măg’ət) – fly larva. There is an English word spelled magot, but it is pronounced [mă-gō’] and refers either to a type of ape or to “a fanciful, often grotesque figurine in the Japanese or Chinese style rendered in a crouching position (answers.com).
Some other examples: ballot, carrot, idiot, parrot, pilot, riot, and zealot.
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