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We found a gravestone in Ashby MA. with an old word on it we could not understand.

"Lot, son of ... was scolt to death Decr. 8, 1806, aged 2 years and 10 months.".

We are not sure what scolt means - has anyone else come across this word before?

Google was unhelpful.

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For reference, I found an image of the grave here. – simchona Aug 7 '11 at 2:52
Ha ha! That's awesome...the Manning family gravestones are really bizzare...there was a Sally and Sarah Manning both married to "John Manning" and having children at all sorts of weird dates. The internet claims there was a John Jr., but we found only one John in the whole graveyard--and even so, he would have been having children with someone in her mid fifties... – Crisfole Aug 8 '11 at 14:07
Even more interesting was that most of John Manning's children died at the age of three. My wife and I wondered if there wasn't a genetic disorder going on...you should visit Ashby if you get a chance, although there's really nothing to do there except enjoy the graveyards. – Crisfole Aug 8 '11 at 14:08
up vote 13 down vote accepted

Scolt is an old variant of "scalded" - i.e. burnt by fluids. A Google book search finds spottings in New England, 1793 and Essex, England.

The t/ed pattern is common enough: burnt/burned, spilt/spilled etc; and in some British English accents, it can be hard sometimes to hear the difference between scald (burn with fluids) and scold (harshly reprimand)

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How did you figure this out? – simchona Aug 7 '11 at 2:05
I +1ed already, but thanks for including information on the t/ed pattern. – simchona Aug 7 '11 at 2:49

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