"bone marror"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Sat Jul 18 00:25:42 UTC 2009

This is only my opinion, based only on my personal experience, but I
think that the modulo is unnecessary. R-less folk don't say marrow
borrow  Storrow  tomorow  Morrow or any other words of this type with
final [ou], even up here in the Boston area, where "Harvard" sounds
less like "Hah vud" and more like "Have id," among the hoi polloi.
Down home and in Los Angeles, I once knew two different guys named
"Carlos." Their name was pronounced "Kah liss [kal at s / kalIs]. (Once,
a local asked why I called Collis "Carlos.") Words in -ow are
pronounced with [-@] and every non-rhotic speaker "knows" that [@] is
replaced by [(V)r] in proper English.


On Fri, Jul 17, 2009 at 10:25 AM, Laurence Horn<laurence.horn at yale.edu> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender: Â  Â  Â  American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster: Â  Â  Â  Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
> Subject: Â  Â  Â "bone marror"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Not exactly an eggcorn, but more than a typo. Â I came across a
> reference to "bone marror" in a posting on my cancer support list,
> and noting that "r" and "w" keys are relatively close but not
> adjacent on the keyboard wondered if it could be a reanalysis. Â Sure
> enough, there are over 680 raw g-hits for "bone marror", as in "bone
> marror transplant", "bone marror donor" (progressive assimilation
> involved here?) and even, with liaison, "bone marror and onion soup".
> I suspect most of these are from non-rhotic speakers, where "marror"
> and "marrow" would be almost homophones (modulo the pronunciation of
> the last vowel, but cf. our earlier threads on "high yeller",
> "feller", and such).
> Without the bone, many of the hits for "marror" involve a geminate
> version of what's usually rendered as "maror", the bitter herb on the
> seder plate at Passover. Â There's often a bone on the same plate, but
> I doubt anyone associates that shank bone with a "marror bone", for
> which there are in any case virtually no hits.
> LH
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