assanine--a new eggcorn?

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Tue Apr 8 15:07:37 UTC 2008

At 10:47 AM -0400 4/8/08, Herb Stahlke wrote:
>In today's Right Matters on the Washington Post web site a participant
>That's an assanine statement!
>Google give 25,100 hits for "assanine", but I haven't seen it in the eggcorn
Well, there are also 216,000 hits for "assinine".  The reconstruction
of "ass-" is essentially etymological (given the origin of "ass" <
_asinus_, so that there really is an ass in asinine), and the
assinine > assanine shift seems fairly non-eggcornish, since there's
no invented morphology involved there as far as I can tell.  Of
course, speakers might understand the "ass" part as the 'fundament'
rather than 'donkey' lexical item, but is that really an eggcorn or
just a (mental) folk etymology?


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