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

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Jun 2 00:38:18 UTC 2010

At 6:15 PM -0400 6/1/10, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>Larry, I didn't see any confirmation to Mark or Groucho in the ADS-L
>archives.  Or are you, as usual, joshing us?

No, not joshing.  I found such confirmation not on ADS-L but on the
web, as noted below (in a rather awkward way, I acknowledge).  Lots
of attestations for the Groucho attribution, but at the moment I
can't locate the one I saw earlier for Twain.


>At 6/1/2010 03:12 PM, Laurence Horn wrote:
>>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.

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

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