[Ads-l] locked and loaded, loaded and locked

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon Aug 14 07:04:28 UTC 2017

With an M-1, first, you lock the safety, making it impossible for the rifle
to be fired, even on purpose, then you insert an eight-round clip, a
process that automatically loads one round into the chamber. Hence:


The M-14, issued to my unit in 1961 - Wikipedia says that the M-1 was
deprecated in 1959, but that was only on paper, apparently; until I went to
the arms room, one day in 1961, and the armorer handed me an M-14 instead
of an M-!, I'd never even heard of the M-14 - has a sixteen-round magazine
instead of a clip. But


still worked for the firing-line, since the M-14 uses essentially the same
operating-system as the M-1, a magazine replacing the clip being the only
significant change. So, no training in its use was necessary

On Fri, Aug 11, 2017 at 9:05 AM, Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:

> Trump said on Twitter this morning that "military solutions are now fully
> in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely."
> OED3 dates "lock and load" to 1940:
> 1940   N.Y. Times 19 Nov. 12/3   Lieut. Col. Joseph T. Hart, range officer,
> boomed through his microphone, ‘Lock and Load’.
> But there are numerous earlier cites for "load(ed) and lock(ed)" in the
> context of firearms, like this from 1898:
> ---
> Detroit Free Press, Dec. 18, 1898, p. 10, col. 5
> It was in its water proof covering and as he removed the covering, the
> rifle, which was loaded and locked, was discharged. ... Collins had let
> another soldier have his rifle to do guard duty, and latter had carelessly
> left it loaded and locked.
> ---
> Doesn't "load and lock" make more sense, since one locks the bolt before
> loading the ammunition? I wonder if it changed to "lock and load" because
> of the phonological constraints on "freezes," as Bill Cooper and Haj Ross
> called such "A + B" orderings in their classic 1975 paper:
> http://www-personal.umich.edu/~jlawler/haj/worldorder.pdf
> --bgz
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

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

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