You Are Probably Mispronouncing This Dessert

Orange sherbet

“It wouldn’t be the first time hipsters spoiled something for America,” says Smithsonian.

According to Encyclopedia Britannica, “The word sherbet derives from the Persian sharbat, an iced fruit drink; iced desserts were introduced to the West via the Middle East. In the late 20th century there was a revival of the practice of serving a tart sherbet or sorbet between the courses of an elaborate meal to refresh the palate.” The iced confection is often served as a dessert, or as a palate cleanser between courses of a fine meal.

Millions of Americans pronounce it “sherbert,” so much so that Merriam-Webster now includes “sherbert” as an alternative. How did this happen, and why?

Smithsonian: It’s Sherbet, Not Sherbert, You Dilettantes.


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