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View Full Version : Spelling question: Ketchup or Catsup?


Tom Fairchild
08-01-2001, 12:29 AM
Just to out do Clark (Sorry, Clark! Your post made me think of this), here's my question. Ketchup or Catsup? Personally, I'm for Ketchup all the way. Catsup just looks weird to me. But then again, I'm a yankee stuck in southern VA. ;)

~Tom~

mike o'leary
08-01-2001, 07:49 PM
its gotta be ketchup...and even if by some wierd fluke it was catsup...what else could it be. what oculd the 'other' option be?

David Kelly
08-02-2001, 10:25 AM
who even came up with catsup? it doesn't even make any since

Jessica Boucher
08-02-2001, 11:20 AM
ketch·up (kchp, kch-) also catch·up (kchp, kch-) or cat·sup (ktsp, kchp, kch-)
n.
A condiment consisting of a thick, smooth-textured, spicy sauce usually made from tomatoes.


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[Probably Malay kicap, fish sauce, possibly from Chinese (Cantonese) k-chap, equivalent to Chinese (Mandarin) qié, eggplant + Chinese (Mandarin) zh, sap, gravy.]
Word History: The word ketchup exemplifies the types of modifications that can take place in borrowingboth of words and substances. The source of our word ketchup may be the Malay word kchap, possibly taken into Malay from the Cantonese dialect of Chinese. Kchap, like ketchup, was a sauce, but one without tomatoes; rather, it contained fish brine, herbs, and spices. Sailors seem to have brought the sauce to Europe, where it was made with locally available ingredients such as the juice of mushrooms or walnuts. At some unknown point, when the juice of tomatoes was first used, ketchup as we know it was born. But it is important to realize that in the 18th and 19th centuries ketchup was a generic term for sauces whose only common ingredient was vinegar. The word is first recorded in English in 1690 in the form catchup, in 1711 in the form ketchup, and in 1730 in the form catsup. All three spelling variants of this foreign borrowing remain current.

Carolyn Duncan
08-02-2001, 02:54 PM
I think the only times I've ever seen catsup it was on a bottle of Ketchup but it was one of the store brands. That could be the diff.

Itasan
10-09-2006, 06:50 PM
Very interesting! How about 'ketsup'?
Sorry I'm a non-native English speaker.
Itasan

Jack Jones
10-09-2006, 07:26 PM
Google says Ketchup by a factor of ten!

Cynette
10-09-2006, 07:48 PM
Catsup! That's the way my momma spelled it and she goes out of her way to buy the stuff that says catsup on it.

I did a mini-version of this question a few months ago and was resoundly told to knock it off! :p Can I start the is it "ketchup" or "catsup" debate? No you may not!! ...

DonRotolo
10-09-2006, 09:09 PM
This (http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-ket2.htm) explains it.

Don

JaneYoung
10-09-2006, 09:23 PM
It's easy. It spells like it sounds.

I'm gonna put some ket-chup on my ham-bugger and get a big pile of fries sprinkled with pepper to go with it. Easy.

DanDon
10-09-2006, 09:42 PM
I think the best way to go is phonetically, that way you save everyone some grief. :)

Nica F.
10-10-2006, 12:51 AM
hm. i always knew it as ketchup until one day i went to a random grocery store and i found something labeled "catsup". it was a very life-altering moment for me. lol

Taylor
10-10-2006, 08:49 AM
It's easy. It spells like it sounds.

I'm gonna put some ket-chup on my ham-bugger and get a big pile of fries sprinkled with pepper to go with it. Easy.


How many fries? A hunnert? And be careful not to eat it in the liberry.

JaneYoung
10-10-2006, 09:16 AM
How many fries? A hunnert? And be careful not to eat it in the liberry.

We have an older cousin (76) that speaks like this. He says 100 and library just like this. His brothers are much younger and do not speak like this. When bidding after 4 H Fairs, to help the children with their feed costs, he is always on the mic saying, 'who'll give me a hunnert - let's start the biddin' at a hunnert.'

Sorry to go off topic, back to ket-chup.
EDIT: pile = pile

Sup3rman
10-12-2006, 08:48 PM
Ketchup. I have heard that Catsup is actually something totally different. Apparently Catsup is a mix of Ketchup and other things such as rice? or BBQ sauce. I know it sounds strange, but thats what I have heard.
So Ketchup all the way!