the devil is beating his wife

20 January 2003

the results of this dialect survey are pretty interesting even though the people who created it are only really concerned with dialects within the united states. the question that floored me was:

  1. What do you call it when rain falls while the sun is shining?

a) sunshower

b) the wolf is giving birth

c) the devil is beating his wife

d) monkey’s wedding

e) fox’s wedding

f) pineapple rain

g) liquid sun

h) I have no term or expression for this

i) other:

i’d never even thought of having a term for this, i just look about for rainbows. the results show that the majority of americans don’t have a term for it either but new englanders like to call it a sunshower and across the american south the devil is beating his wife.