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7 comments on this post.
  1. Shelley:

    The use of anathema as a noun without the article has always driven me crazy. I was glad to find out that it is actually OK to use an article, so should I ever have the occasion to use the word (doesn’t come up all that often for me) I plan to use “an anathema”.

  2. Mirkat:

    Shelley, I agree. “Anathema” without the “an” hurts my ears (or eyes when I’m reading). (I’m also more of an “a myriad of” girl–i.e. “a myriad of possibilities” instead of “myriad possibilities.”)

  3. Mark:

    I agree with both of you. I have occasionally used the word and have noticed that I seem to be the only person using the article. In fact, I came across a website where the use of the article was apparently an anathema to the posters. I will now stick to my guns and continue to use “an.”

  4. Tara:

    I’ve heard many people mispronounce it as an “aneethma”, and I have even seen it written in newspapers as an “enethma”, so it is confusing. Of course, I saw a newspaper print that the President said he was going to be “pottering” around in his back yard instead of “puttering” around, so I guess anything goes nowadays.

  5. tommie miller:

    “Chomping at the bit” instead of “Champing at the bit” has always driven me crazy. And yes, I have no idea why anathema is used without the article.

  6. Ben:

    ugh! Thanks, Shelly. I can’t stand this word, despise its wrongful deployment as the only “adjective-noun” in the World…and you just know that people say: “It was anathema to him” because nobody had the patience for the “Anne Elk” effect of “an anathema.”

  7. C Le Verdic:

    Well, Tommie, you’ve just used it (well, OK, 2 years ago) perfectly acceptably without an article. Consider it to be like hypocrisy. Does that need an article?

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