[Ads-l] Not "150th anniversary," writes...

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon Mar 30 21:31:06 UTC 2015

On Mon, Mar 30, 2015 at 3:46 PM, Dan Goncharoff <thegonch at gmail.com> wrote:

> Exceptional (but for the 150 part)? Not to my ear. I hear references to
> seven-year and ten-year anniversaries all the time.

The point is that it's *not* exceptional - in expressions like one-week
"anniversary," three-month "anniversary." What else are you going to say?
But "150 year anniversary" - not even "150-year anniversary" - and not
"150th anniversary" is an indication that writers for the Smithsonian - and
their editors - are no more aware of the traditional use of the word,
"anniversary," than the average "guest" on the Jerry Springer Show is.

Hearing random people use a novel, non-traditional, syntactic structure
shouldn't make it, thereby, "correct." But it does, even among those of
academic background.

Language-change in progress.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

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

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