I lately lost a preposition

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Mon Jan 28 01:47:51 UTC 2008

At 1/27/2008 08:02 PM, Mark Mandel wrote:
>A man remained unaccounted for after fire engulfed an Albemarle County
>townhouse Saturday night, as firefighters spent hours battling a blaze that
>lit up the structure's entire façade.
>The release states that fire officials have reason to believe this is the
>unaccounted [___] person.

According to other writers on this list, there
are a lot of excess "of"s around.

But I note a few unaccountants who have
malfeased* their prepositions in the OED:

  2. Of which no account is given.
    1689 Apol. Fail. Walker's Acc. 19 Those
unaccounted (but not unaccountable) baffles giv'n
to the reliefs sent to Derry.  1812 Examiner 5
Oct. 633/1 Which suffers an Irish Defaulter of
unaccounted millions, to remain unaudited.  1827
Hallam Const. Hist. II. 56 note, They reported
unaccounted balances of 1,509,161l., besides much
that was questionable in the payments.

*If misfease can be a verb in the OED, why can't malfease?


>DailyProgress.com | Fire rips through

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

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