post-humus? Pronunciation and possible eggcorn

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Aug 12 16:47:16 UTC 2009

At 10:34 AM -0400 8/12/09, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>Did I just hear on CNN News (about 10:23 AM EDT) the news announcer
>say that Harvey Milk was to be given today a Presidential Medal of
>Freedom "post-humusly"?
>Must mean "after planting and decay".
The eggcorn actually goes back to Late Latin, when "postumus" became
"posthumus" via influence by "humus" (which, coincidentally, is not
only the word for "humus" but cognate with "homo", so that
posthumusness refers obliquely not only to burial but to


The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list