[Ads-l] hypercorrect pluralization of attributives

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Sun Mar 29 14:03:37 UTC 2015


My gratuitous and over-intellectualized assumption is that users of such
forms "reason" that the singular attributive is "illogical" and therefore
"incorrect," because the phrase refers to a number of individual items.

Thus "hypercorrect." Which, of course, is a subcategory of "incorrect."

BTW, CNN anchors are exhibiting a chilling fondness for plural
"aircrafts."

JL

On Sun, Mar 29, 2015 at 9:24 AM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu>
wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: hypercorrect pluralization of attributives
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Why (in the subject line) hyper- and not (if you'll pardon the =
> expression) in-?  Or, to be more polite, hypocorrect? Is there a =
> prestige form the innovators below are aiming to reach or overreach?
>
> LH
>
> > On Mar 29, 2015, at 8:03 AM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM> =
> wrote:
> >=20
> > CNN is talking about "the Houthis rebels."
> >=20
> > I've recently heard "the movies industry."
> >=20
> > Plus (I hope you're sitting down) "the aircrafts industry."
> >=20
> >=20
> > JL
> >=20
> >=20
> >=20
> > On Mon, Mar 30, 2009 at 1:11 PM, Laurence Horn =
> <laurence.horn at yale.edu>
> > wrote:
> >=20
> >> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> >> -----------------------
> >> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> >> Poster:       Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
> >> Subject:      Re: hypercorrect pluralization of attributives
> >>=20
> >> =
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> -----
> >>=20
> >> At 9:29 AM -0700 3/30/09, Arnold Zwicky wrote:
> >>> On Mar 30, 2009, at 7:41 AM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
> >>>>=20
> >>>=20
> >>>> At 3/30/2009 09:40 AM, Arnold Zwicky wrote:
> >>>>=20
> >>>>> not ridiculous or incorrect, much less hypercorrect.  *the name of
> >>>>> the
> >>>>> dice game* is "craps".  you "shoot craps".  "crap game" would be
> >>>>> absurd, like "jack game", "measle infection", etc.
> >>>>>=20
> >>>>> see the OED entry for "craps".  of obscure origin (not obviously
> >>>>> related to "crap" 'feces'),
> >>>>=20
> >>>> But, as I learned, the OED also has "crap" and "crap game".
> >>>=20
> >>> ack.  i somehow missed that.
> >>>=20
> >>> i would interpret "crap game" as a re-shaping of "craps game",
> >>> accommodating the expression to the usual pattern for N-N compounds.
> >>>=20
> >>> i'm starting to find more such re-shapings.  i get small numbers of
> >>> hits for {"measle infection"} and {"mump infection"}, for instance.
> >>>=20
> >>> meanwhile, Joel Berson has pointed out to me that the OED has an =
> entry
> >>> for "eave", back-formed from "eaves", with citations from 1789.  the =
> -
> >>> s of "eaves" was not originally a mark of the plural, but in modern
> >>> english the word is standardly plural in its syntax, and that led to
> >>> the creation of a singular "eave".
> >>=20
> >> A case of "eaves" dropping, then.  And a nice addition to the
> >> "kudo(s)", "pea(s(e))" stock.
> >>=20
> >> LH
> >>=20
> >>>  though many sources (like CGEL)
> >>> treat "eaves" as invariably plural, back-formed "eave" turns out to =
> be
> >>> pretty frequent these days; a google search on {"to the eave"} =
> turned
> >>> up plenty of examples -- many of them with "eave" as the first =
> element
> >>> in a N-N compound (like "eave strut"), but many of them not.
> >>>=20
> >>> arnold
> >>>=20
> >>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> >>> The American Dialect Society - =
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=3Dhttp-3A__www.americandialect.=
> org&d=3DAwIBaQ&c=3D-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=3DwFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsS=
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> uvISSX7feGhehXo04Pg3I_qBhz1Rjyz5DXK_c&e=3D=20
> >>=20
> >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> >> The American Dialect Society - =
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=3Dhttp-3A__www.americandialect.=
> org&d=3DAwIBaQ&c=3D-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=3DwFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsS=
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> uvISSX7feGhehXo04Pg3I_qBhz1Rjyz5DXK_c&e=3D=20
> >>=20
> >=20
> >=20
> >=20
> > --=20
> > "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the =
> truth."
> >=20
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society - =
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>
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-- 
"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

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