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The first Philadelphia Mint, as it appeared around 1908 "Ye olde" is a pseudo–Early Modern English phrase originally used to suggest a connection between a place or business and Merry England (or the medieval period). The term dates to the 1850s or earlier; it continues to be used today, albeit now more frequently in an ironically anachronistic fashion.

History

Use of "ye olde" dates at least to the late 18th century. The use of the term "ye" to mean "the" derives from Early Modern English, in which ''the'' was written ''þe'', employing the Old English letter thorn, ''þ''. During the Tudor period, the scribal abbreviation for ''þe'' was ("þͤ" or "þᵉ" with modern symbols); here, the letter is combined with the letter .''Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary''
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Because and look nearly identical in medieval English [[blackletter (as the in , compared with the in ''ye''), the two have since been mistakenly substituted for each other. The connection became less obvious after the letter thorn was discontinued in favour of the digraph . Today, ''ye'' is often incorrectly pronounced as the archaic pronoun of the same spelling.

See also

*Olde English District *Sensational spelling

References



External links

{{wiktionary
Antique English: Why is 'ye' used instead of 'the' in antique English?
Category:English words and phrases