snowclone: A by B, C by D
cxr1086 at LOUISIANA.EDU
Sat Sep 29 18:16:37 UTC 2007
Given the examples and a few more I was able to dredge up, the formula might
more exactly be:
Adj1 by NP1, Adj2 by NP2
My first reaction was to remember a phrase ubiquitous still in today's
"American by birth, Southern by the grace of God"
I couldn't turn up much history on this phrase. The earliest Google books
example is a line for VS Naipaul's _A Turn in the South_ (Knopf, 1989), p.
292, unconfirmed by snippet view.
In 1988 MCA released a Lynryd Skynyrd tribute album called--a little
misleadingly--"Lynyrd Skynyrd Live," documenting a 1987 tribute tour. The
album, like the tour, was subtitled "Southern by the Grace of God," and
eventually this became the common title for the album as it is listed by
discographies and Amazon, etc. The earliest Lexis Nexis citations of the
whole phrase and the second half, respectively, are reviews of those two
publications. I don't have access to newspaperarchive.com.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: David Bowie [mailto:db.list at PMPKN.NET]
> Sent: Friday, September 28, 2007 9:06 AM
> Subject: snowclone: A by B, C by D
> From: James Harbeck <jharbeck at SYMPATICO.CA>
> > I just happened to pick up a promo magazine for Yukon (one
> of Canada's
> > northern territories) someone left lying in the subway, and
> one of the
> > articles had this headline:
> > Yukon: Innovative by nature, entrepreneurial by tradition
> > Which brought to my consciousness the fact that this seems to be an
> > increasingly common phrasing: A by B, C by D, where A and C are
> > adjectives usually related somehow and B and D are nouns usually
> > having some contrast or similar relation. There was an ad on the
> > subway last year for a herbal menopause treatment which had had a
> > medical trial, the only result of which the ad actually
> reported was
> > that many of the patients chose to stay on the treatment after the
> > trial was over. Its tag line (IIRC) was
> > Trialled by doctors, trusted by patients
> Whenever i've seen this, i've always read it as an extension
> of the old A:B::C:D SAT analogies: A is to B in just the same
> way as C is to D.
> Pretty much what you said, except that it would explain why
> it works for marketing purposes.
> David Bowie University of
> Central Florida
> Jeanne's Two Laws of Chocolate: If there is no chocolate in the
> house, there is too little; some must be purchased. If there is
> chocolate in the house, there is too much; it must be consumed.
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
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