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H.L. Mencken (1880–1956). The American Language. 1921.

Page 143

So long ago as 1867, Gould protested against this elision as barbarous and idiotic, and drew up the following reductio ad absurdum:
At last annual meeting of Black Book Society, honorable John Smith took the chair, assisted by reverend John Brown and venerable John White. The office of secretary would have been filled by late John Green, but for his decease, which rendered him ineligible. His place was supplied by inevitable John Black. In the course of the evening eulogiums were pronounced on distinguished John Gray and notorious Joseph Brown. Marked compliment was also paid to able historian Joseph White, discriminating philosopher Joseph Green, and learned professor Joseph Black. But conspicuous speech of the evening was witty Joseph Gray’s apostrophe to eminent astronomer Jacob Brown, subtle logician Jacob White, etc., etc. 36
  Richard Grant White, a year or two later, joined the attack in the New York Galaxy, and William Cullen Bryant included the omission of the article in his Index Expurgatorius, but these anathemas were as ineffective as Gould’s irony. The more careful American journals, of course, incline to the the, and I note that it is specifically ordained on the Style-sheet of the Century Magazine, but the overwhelming majority of American newspapers get along without it, and I have often noticed its omission on the sign-boards at church entrances. 37 In England it is never omitted. 38

4. Euphemisms
    But such euphemisms as lady-clerk are, after all, much rarer in English than in American usage. The Englishman seldom tries