Saturday, June 13, 2020

Linguistic Issues Involved in Changing Whaple into Whipple

By Charles M. Whipple, Ph.D., ED.D. 

One of the more widely recognized extant variants of the original eleventh-century Winple patronymic that appeared in the Domesday Book of 1086, experienced well into the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, is the confused use of the letter “s” at the close of many surnames.  Instances of such, relative to the Whipple surname were:  Whaples/Whaple;  Wheples/Wheple;  and Whiples/Whiple. Other instances evidencing this confusional state, as well as a mixing of the six above surnames, seen in Whiple/Whaple, could be noted. Moreover, these appear to have become exceedingly prevalent, as well as overly resistant to modulation during ensuing generations.