Possible eggcorn

Arnold Zwicky zwicky at STANFORD.EDU
Sat Aug 15 18:01:11 UTC 2009

from the past:

On Mar 15, 2009, at 12:16 PM, Bill Palmer wrote:

> A close relative just told me that she had been called to serve
> "jewelry
> duty".
> Does this qualify?

hard to tell.  it could just be a Fay-Cutler malapropism, a glitch in
word retrieval. on the web, it seems to be an isolated occurrence of
"jewelry" for "jury" (i tried a number of expressions; searching on
"jewelry duty" by itself is hopeless, because that pulls up pages of
stuff about (customs) duty on jewelry, and "serve jewelry duty" nets
only this query).

even if the speaker did intend "jewelry", that would look like an
ordinary classical malapropism rather than specifically an eggcorn --
unless someone can think of how jewelry might be involved in this duty.


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

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