Chris Waigl chris at LASCRIBE.NET
Sun Aug 16 22:08:15 UTC 2009

On 11 Aug 2009, at 15:52, Arnold Zwicky wrote:
> 1.  Pails.  B-line exemplifies a fairly common error type, involving a
> part X of an expression that can be parsed out but can't be easily
> assigned a meaning: in [bi]-line, line is a recognizable element, but
> what is [bi]?  The name of the letter B?  The verb be?  The noun bee?
> The proper name Bea?  Something unique to this expression (a "cran
> morph")?

Just to comment on this small point, I was mentioning B-line as a very
questionable eggcorn to an interested friend a while ago, and she
surprisingly said she used to think it came from the letter B,
thinking of the vertical line in it as the very image of a straight
line. So this is just to show (once more, after many times) the
subjective nature of making sense of some lexical item.


Chris Waigl -- --
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The American Dialect Society -

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