A travesty of travestie

Why the hell do I do that?

It’s a serendipitous combination of how to pronounce “Ossetia” and the chance discovery of John Poole’s Hamlet Travestie that lead me to this point. 

Travestie is merely an old spelling of travesty, yet for some reason I’ve always read the word as *travéstie with stress on the second syllable and not as trávesty. The word is a little peculiar in that stress falls on the initial syllable (i.e., the antepenultimate), skipping a heavy penultimate syllable which ought to be stress-attracting. 

My next question is whether the word was stressed on the penultimate syllable in the early Modern English period. Unfortunately, there’s no database of early Modern English (poetic) texts which I can peruse to find out. At a guess, stress may have shied away from the penultimate syllable because if the original pronunciation roughly corresponded to that of the French past participle travesti with emphasis on the final syllable, stress of the ággravàte pattern might’ve been applied. In other words, travestie was never assigned penultimate stress. 

Nonetheless, why would I read the word as *travéstie in the first place? (Thinks for a bit. Can’t find decent excuse. Exits stage right.)

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