H.L. Mencken (18801956). The American Language. 1921.
that the foreign word we find knocking at the doors of English [he really means American, as the context shows] is likely to be useful, we must fit it for naturalization by insisting that it shall shed its accents, if it has any; that it shall change its spelling, if this is necessary; that it shall modify its pronunciation, if this is not easy for us to compass; and that it shall conform to all our speech-habits, especially in the formation of the plural. This counsel is heeded by the great majority of American printers. I have found bozart (for beaux arts) on the first page of a leading American newspaper, and a large textile corporation widely advertises Bozart rugs. Exposè long since lost its accent and is now commonly pronounced to rhyme with propose. In the common speech the French word beau has been naturalized as bo, and is often so spelled. Schmierkäse has become smearkase. The sauer, in sauer-kraut and sauer-braten, is often spelled sour.Cole-slaw, has become cold-slaw.Canon is canyon. I have even seen jonteel, in a trade name, for the French gentil.
American newspapers seldom distinguish between the masculine and feminine forms of common loan-words. Blond and blonde are used indiscriminately. The majority of papers, apparently mistaking blond for a simplified form of blonde, use it to designate both sexes. So with employèe, divorcèe, dèbutante, etc. Here the feminine form is preferred; no doubt it has been helped into use in the case of the -ee words by the analogy of devotee. In all cases, of course, the accents are omitted. In the formation of the plural American adopts native forms much more quickly than English. All the English authorities that I have consulted advocate retaining the foreign plurals of most of the loan-words in daily use, e. g., sanatoria, appendices, indices, virtuosi, formul, libretti, media, thèsdansants, monsignori. But American usage favors plurals of native design, and sometimes they take quite fantastic forms. I have observed delicatessens, monsignors, virtuosos, rathskellers, kindergartens, nucleuses and appendixes. Even the Journal of the American Medical Association, a highly scientific authority, goes so far as to approve curriculums and septums. Banditti, in place of bandits, would seem an affectation to an American, and so would soprani for