Mark Mandel thnidu at GMAIL.COM
Thu Dec 20 22:36:21 UTC 2007

Happenstantially, two questions relating to "cover" have recently come my
way. The first is, How did "cover" come to mean 'record a song that someone
else has previously recorded'? OED cites this from 1962, but under the main
meaning with no justification for the connection:


cover, n.(1)
> *    I. 1.    a. That which covers: anything that is put or laid over, or
> that naturally overlies or overspreads an object, with the effect of hiding,
> sheltering, or enclosing it; often a thing designed or appropriated for the
> purpose. *
> *    b. Often as the second element in combinations.*
> *    c. Calico-printing. A design that is printed over another design in
> resist-work. Also cover pattern.*
> *    d. Cricket. = COVER-POINT 1. So the covers: cover-point and extra
> cover-point. *
> *    e. Lawn Tennis. (Cf. COVER v.1 13b.)*
> *    f. In full cover version. A recording of a song, etc., which has
> already been recorded by someone else.*

*1966* *Melody Maker* 23 July 12/2 This is a cover version of the new Beach
Boys single from some friends and admirers, the Castaways.


The second question relates to what in our house we call "cover sheets":
ordinary bed sheets that we put on top of the bed during the day so that,
after a few days of the cat's keeping us company, snoozing, and trying to
kill my wife's sewing, we don't have to wash the bedspread clean of cat
fuzz. I described them on my blog and someone else commented: *


> What you call "cover sheets" my father's two sisters called Allendales.
> Dunno the origin.


I've found a chain of resorts called "Allendale", and I can speculate that,
like "cover sheets", this was a family usage, perhaps based on the practice
at those hotels, but that's just WAGgery. Anyone?

m a m

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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