[Ads-l] "over a barrel of monkeys"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Sun Sep 8 10:58:42 EDT 2019


> On Aug 21, 2019, at 12:58 PM, Arnold M. Zwicky <zwicky at STANFORD.EDU> wrote:
> 
>> On Aug 21, 2019, at 9:27 AM, Margaret Winters <mewinters at WAYNE.EDU> wrote:
>> 
>> malapropism?  or is that too wide a term?
>> 
>> ...
> 
>> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of Marc Sacks <msacksg at GMAIL.COM>
>> Sent: Wednesday, August 21, 2019 12:26 PM
>> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Subject: "over a barrel of monkeys"
>> 
>> My daughter called me to ask if there's a technical term for the sort of
>> phrase where one cliche ends at the beginning of another. I suppose it's a
>> sort of malaphor, but I wondered if there's a more precise name for it.
> 
> "idiom blend" -- fair amount of lterature on them, including some postings of mine.
> 

a.k.a. “fractured idioms” (e.g. “We’ll burn that bridge when we come to it”, “It’s not rocket surgery”).  For fans of the practice, there’s this from a recent New Yorker:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/09/09/position-paper

LH

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