Oriented vs. Orientated

Mark A. Mandel Mark_Mandel at DRAGONSYS.COM
Thu Mar 29 18:45:46 UTC 2001

Larry writes:

At 2:42 PM -0500 3/27/01, James A. Landau wrote:
>  >   ENGLISH  : That gator really needs to get oriented.
>>    IRWINESE : We need to get him orientated.


>I can think of two hypotheses to explain Irwin's wording, neither of
>which leads to a general rule or classification.
>Hypothesis 1: Irwin was familiar with the noun "orientation" but not
>with the less common verb "to orient".  Wishing to come up with the
>verb, he created "to orientate" as an ad-hoc back-formation.

But it's NOT ad hoc; it's been around since 1849, as the OED attests.

As I read Jim's hypothesis, he is trying to look into Irwin's mind for the
source of THIS use in THIS exchange. His hypothesis 1 is independent
re-invention, not use of a form that Irwin had already learned. And that
*would* be ad-hoc.

-- Mark A. Mandel

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