Not in DARE

Dennis R. Preston preston at MSU.EDU
Fri Nov 18 22:58:36 UTC 2005

I think this is general US (urban); hence, not in DARE.


>The other day, I heard a local newsreader speak of the "gangway" of a ship.
>Obviously, what was meant was "gangplank."
>DARE has "gangway" as railroader and logger jargon. However, in St. Louis, a
>"gangway" is a narrow, paved space between two buildings that permits
>passage from the front of one of the buildings to the back of it. In
>residential neighborhoods, the gangway connects to the front walk of a
>residedence and permits passage from the frontyard of that residence to its
>backyard. As you face a house, the gangway to the right leads to the
>backyard of that house, whereas the gangway to the left leads to the
>backyard of the neighboring house. Adolescent boys use these for tom-peeping
>and males of all ages use them as emergency urinals, much to the annoyance
>of the homeowners.
>-Wilson Gray

Dennis R. Preston
University Distinguished Professor
Department of English
15-C Morrill Hall
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1036
Phone: (517) 353-4736
Fax: (517) 353-3755
preston at

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