Q: "Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana."

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Tue Jun 1 19:12:04 UTC 2010

At 2:22 PM -0400 6/1/10, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>Having now recalled that this has been discussed before (in Nov.
>2006), I find in the (ADS-L) archives that I wrote nearly the same
>information then.  I suggested someone ask Oettinger.  No-one
>reported back that they had.

And in Nov. 2006 I mentioned recalling the existence of a poem that
included both these lines, but being unable to locate said poem on
the web.  This is still the case.  I was able to confirm, however,
that the observation that time flies like an arrow and fruit flies
like a banana was made by Mark Twain and Groucho Marx.
Independently, I presume, although you never know.  And inside of a
dog, those fruit flies are too dark to see.


>At 6/1/2010 01:57 PM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>>At 6/1/2010 12:18 PM, Garson O'Toole wrote:
>>>I think that the teaching materials at the Harvard University Archives
>>>are a good location to look for an antedating as you suggest.
>>Oh dear.  And I suppose I'm targeted because I took Oettinger's
>>class.  Perhaps I can get excused if I claim I didn't actually see
>>the adage until the 1966 Scientific American article.  Fred, do you
>>have a paid flunky with access to the Harvard Archives?
>>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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

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