We respectfully disagree: stamp vs. stomp

A lead on a story from a few days ago with the construction "stamped to death" made me stop. I thought other readers might trip over "stamped" in a construction where we usually see "stomped."

I checked the dictionary and usage guides. The Columbia Guide to Standard American English says "stomp" began as a dialectal variation of "stamp," but that it is now standard and preferred for the meaning "to trample or destroy by trampling." The American Heritage Book of English Usage says we can use "stamp" or "stomp" interchangeably for the meaning "to trample" or "to tread on violently."

This article was originally posted by the Raleigh News & Observer, a subsidiary of The McClatchy Co.; is posted here to provide continuity; and is copyright © 2011 The News & Observer Publishing Company, which reserves the right to remove this post.