Whiz & names (UNCLASSIFIED)

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Wed Sep 26 17:02:21 UTC 2007

"Your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams" (Acts 2:17; Joel 2:28). I wonder if the phrasing in the King James Bible has canonized (so to speak) the locution "dream + dream."


---- Original message ----
>Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2007 11:23:53 -0400
>From: Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>

>At 7:10 AM -0400 9/26/07, Dennis Preston wrote:

>>Notice, for example, how the historical verb "dream" becomes a noun and then disqualifies itself by redundancy in "dream a dream" (although "dream a very pleasant dream" or any other interruptive seems to make cognate verb-object constructions OK).

>I wouldn't be so hasty with this claim.  "I dreamed a dream" alone has 165,000 ghits; I looked it up because I know at least two songs containing that line.  While many of these hits reference one or another such song lines I would imagine the cognate object construction is not that hard to find in spoken rather than sung English.  (There are also many hits for "he dreamed a dream (last night)" and such.
>>Once "have" steps into this role, then it can be
>>used with "nightmare," which has no status as a verb at all.
>>I'd certainly be interested in seeing a crosslinguistic study of
>>these cognate verb-noun constructions. Has there been any work on
>>PS: I know Wilson, you can "walk the walk" and "talk the talk," so
>>don't give (make) that speech.
>>PPS: Notice how "sing the song" is OK because of the phonetic dissimilarity.
>There's also "danced a dance"--faute de mieux, since we don't have
>"do/make/have a dance".  These redundancies are in general much
>better than, say,
>*She is eyed (vs. {blue/brown/green}-eyed)
>*an eyed man (vs. a one-eyed/brown-eyed man)
>*He is haired
>--where the unmodified form is not only predictable but ungrammatical.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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