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Dear People raised in the UK or Canada, and other people who like filling out polls:

Which of the following would you normally use?

an historian
a historian

Which of the following would you normally use?

an historical figure
a historical figure

Languages are challenging, not least because they keep changing. "an historian" and "an historical figure" were some of the British grammatical quirks I got down early.

Only now, the internet tells me, times, they are a changin'. It's okay to use "a" instead of "an" for histor* words in British Englishes. I would like some more evidence on the subject one way or the other.


Feb. 10th, 2011 12:04 am (UTC)
Colonial perspective: I say an historian every time, also an hotel, but always a herb. I have no idea what I do in writing, but I think I would tend towards an historian with the understanding that a historian is perfectly respectable (ha ha) and an historian is merely a tick derived from my own speech.
Feb. 10th, 2011 12:05 am (UTC)
For the record, in editing I would tend only to change it for consistency within a document or consistency within a publication.