Washington Post, Them's Fightin' Words: War Lingo Rushes to the Front

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Nov 12 05:03:08 UTC 2001

At 12:46 PM +0800 11/12/01, Laurence Horn wrote:
>Nice, but i trust we can assume that it wasn't the profusely cited
>Allen Metcalf who contributed author Ken Ringle's authoritative
>finding that "boozy" derives from "doughboys' experience with red
>wine from Buzy, a French town near Chateau-Thierry, which also may
>have spawned the term 'booze'."  Considering that there are several
>19th-century OED attestations for "booz(e)"/"boose" (and one from
>1732) and for "boozy" with different spellings dating back to 1529,
>this history only works if you assume time travel.

Oops, my bad.  Make that the profusely cited "ALLAN [spelled
correctly] Metcalf, executive secretary of the American Dialect
Society".  And no, the etymology of booze/boozy was not directly
attributed to Allan, but to nameless "authorities".   There are a few
other howlers (was 'domino theory' really used to "refer to dominoes"
before the Vietnam War era?), but it's mostly OK, and it's nice to
get the free pub.


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