Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Nov 19 13:31:35 UTC 2001

At 1:25 PM -0800 11/19/01, Arnold Zwicky wrote:
>every so often we have a discussion of purported acronym
>sources for common words.  a while back, larry horn called
>them "pseudo-acronyms" and connected them (and the inventive-
>story etymologies) to urban legends.
>i have a stanford colleague (in the business school) who's
>been working on urban legends and hadn't heard about pseudo-acronyms
>before.  he wondered if there was a discussion of these in print.
>any advice about where to point him?  or is this yet another
>topic that someone needs to write up (for the common good)?
>arnold (zwicky at

I'm writing up a question on it for a class final, but I don't think
that really addresses your issue.  It's one of the topics I discussed
in the general category of "etymythology" in a paper called "Rarebit
Redux:  Etymology and Human Nature" (presented at the Yale
Elizabethan Society, Sept. 2000), which can be cited but not seen.
Some day...


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