British bias in the OED :-)

Victor Steinbok aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM
Mon Dec 17 17:29:23 UTC 2012

Harvard is among the schools that refer to their "athletes" by color.
There are other "color" schools, but their number pales next to the
number of schools with animal or human mascots (and a handful of
"other", such as "Buckeye"). The Tech used to report on team colors,
although "maroon and gray" may be more of a mouthful than most reporters
(even college ones) are willing to say.


On 12/17/2012 11:23 AM, George Thompson wrote:
> On Sun, Dec 16, 2012 at 2:20 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at>wrote:
>> In that case, the school colors of all universities should be in the OED.
>>   And the mascots and symbols of all big-league sports teams.
> To the extent that readers may encounter sentences like "He is [a color]",
> meaning "he is a graduate of [a school]".
> I don't know how common this would be, in the U. S.  I attended Boston U.,
> but do not expect to be referred to as a Red (except in the political
> sense).  I do see the sports teams from Syracuse &c. referred to as The
> Orangemen, &c; and the teams of other schools referred to as "The Badgers",
> &c.  The overall context of whatever writing contains such designations
> will probably make clear what they signify, but the sentence out of context
> will puzzle.
> Is this a problem that a comprehensive dictionary should try to address?
> --
> George A. Thompson
> Author of A Documentary History of "The African Theatre", Northwestern
> Univ. Pr., 1998, but nothing much since then.

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