burgers (was: Re: request)

Lynne Murphy lynnem at COGS.SUSX.AC.UK
Wed Aug 16 16:59:47 UTC 2000

Larry says:

> in other cases.  Take the "-burger" formative, for instance.  Does
> the generalized "Xburger" denote 'hamburger with X' (or some variant,
> possibly 'hamburger in the style of X', where 'hamburger' entails
> ground beef or at least ground meat) or does it denote 'X placed
> between buns'?  The meanings of cheeseburger and pizzaburger suggest
> the former (they don't denote respectively a piece of cheese and a
> slice of pizza served on a bun), but that of fishburger (an old term
> for what is also known as "filet-o-fish") or veggieburger presuppose
> the latter.  The sense in which it's true that Arnold is (still) a
> guppie is the veggieburger sense, the sense in which it's false is
> the cheeseburger sense.

There's a third interpretation of -burger:  'ground X (between buns)',
and the confusing thing is that 'turkey burger' usually gets the
'ground' reading while 'chicken burger' often (this might just be
outside the US: UK and SA) gets the 'unground' reading.


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