The brainchild behind

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Mon May 6 14:20:34 UTC 2013

On Mon, May 6, 2013 at 9:23 AM, Neal Whitman wrote:
> On NPR this morning, a story about the dismal run of a Spice Girls in London said
> that the show's creator was also "the brainchild behind" the musical Mamma Mia.
> A Google search for "the brainchild behind" brings up a number of hits I can't
> determine on my phone screen, but I notice that the first one is from Brian's Usage
> Errors, explaining that some people misuse "brainchild" in this way. In any case, it
> was new to me.
> Checking with Google Ngrams, I see that "brainchild behind" is on the rise, but still
> very rare compared to "brainchild of". I had to magnify the results 50x before
> it appeared as something other than a flat line:*50&year_start=1900&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=

And see the discussion of "brainchild" we had in Jan. '08:


Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society -

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