[Ads-l] "dino-chicken" -- WOTY?

Joel Berson berson at ATT.NET
Thu May 21 17:10:35 UTC 2015

A back-formation?
Not new this year ... Brief Googling shows use (and perhaps coining) in 2009, in the ground-breaking "How to Build a Dinosaur: Extinction Doesn't Have to be Forever", by John Horner and James Gorman (2009) [GBooks has the wrong subtitle for this, the first, edition]:

"One of the benefits of actually hatching a dino-chicken would be that it would be shockingly vivid evidence of the reality of evolution ...".  [Page not given in GBooks preview.]
But it may procreate, since reported in the journal Evolution is that "a group of scientists has managed to turn a chicken's beak ... back into something resembling the dinosaur snout it once was."  [NYTimes, May 16, 2015, editorial.]
Thus humanity is part-way down the path started on by Horner, who is now trying to restore the dinosaur's long tail (presumably also starting with a chicken.  However, no beakless chicken has actually been hatched yet.

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

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