acronym (was re: uniting two old threads...)

Mark A. Mandel mamandel at LDC.UPENN.EDU
Sat May 27 15:46:17 UTC 2006

Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU> scripsit:

1)  What was it we were going to call the "Nabisco", "Gestapo",
"Comintern" type formations, which are to syllables what acronyms are
to letters?  Here's another one...


ISTR the definition of "acronym" as referring to the first parts of the
component words, not just their initials.

Merriam-Webster Online says:


: a word (as NATO, radar, or snafu) formed from the initial letter or
letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term;
also : an abbreviation (as FBI) formed from initial letters : INITIALISM


OED Online:


A word formed from the initial letters of other words.


Hmph. Merriam-Webster is more precise on every aspect of the definition.
Jesse, I think you have some catching up to do here.

-- Mark
[This text prepared with Dragon NaturallySpeaking.]

The American Dialect Society -

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