"barrel stays"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Jul 15 17:45:27 UTC 2013

On Jul 15, 2013, at 1:07 PM, Charles C Doyle wrote:

> The following eggcorn (as I take it to be) comes from Dan Brown's recent novel _Inferno_ (NY: Doubleday, 2013), 116:
> << The pathway's name, La Cerchiata--literally 'circular' or 'hooped'--derived from its canopy of curved trees resembling barrel stays or _cerchi_. >>
> In any case, he may have been thinking of barrel hoops, not a barrel staves.
> Brown himself is a famously poor writer, but one would suppose that the novel had been scrupulously copy-read.
Maybe just the natural confusion between staving off invasions, boredom, hunger, etc. with staying off the grass.  (Given what's happening to copy-editing, I fear that your supposition is wildly optimistic.)


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

More information about the Ads-l mailing list