Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Fri Oct 29 14:44:49 UTC 2010

On Fri, Oct 29, 2010 at 10:03 AM, Arnold Zwicky <zwicky at> wrote:
> On Oct 29, 2010, at 12:42 AM, Victor Steinbok wrote:
> > A bizarre little twist in sentence structure from Politico:
> >
> >
> >> The Commission, finding *the color's white structure* a bit tacky, did
> >> insist that it be bronze colored.
> this is reversal/exchange/transposition of two words with phrasal accent, preserving inflectional morphology. two exx from my files:
> I’m beginning to lose faith that the walls on the clock [for "the clocks on the wall"] are correct.
>  (Walt Wolfram, chairing NWAV section, 10/21/05) [note preservation of plural inflection in situ]
> "We, again, have a very difficult bridge to gap here, because I know that this is something that we don't want to look at."
>  (Republican House Whip Eric Cantor, during President Obama’s health care summit in late February 2010)

More on Cantor's bridge-gapping here:


Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society -

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