[Ads-l] ADJ + of = a + ADJ

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Jul 18 02:26:12 UTC 2018

> On Jul 17, 2018, at 10:12 PM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> Clearly, this is not grammatical. What he ought to have said is,
> "Does the European Union believe that Donald Trump is _all that reliable
> of_ an ally?"
> Anymore, this kind of egregious error aggravates* the hell out of me.
> *During the War, the use of _aggravate_ "annoy" seriously knotted the
> panties of school-teachers. I've heard it used a few times, recently. Maybe
> the usage is zombie-ing back from the grave.

Apparently the zombie was alive and well from the 16th c. onward.  OED, s.v. _aggravate_

6 a. To exasperate (a person); to incense, embitter; to provoke, arouse the dislike, dissatisfaction, or concern of; (also in weakened use) to annoy or irritate. Now chiefly colloq.

1598   J. Florio Worlde of Wordes   Essagerare, to exasperat, to prouoke, to irritate, to agrauat, to exaggerat, to amplifie, to extoll.
1611   R. Cotgrave Dict. French & Eng. Tongues   Aggravanter, to aggravate, exasperate.
1634   T. Herbert Relation Some Yeares Trauaile 92   This aggrated [sic] the Persian King exceedingly to be so bearded.
1747   S. Richardson Clarissa I. xliii. 302   If both were to aggravate her parents, as my brother and sister do mine.
1752   W. Goodall Adventures Capt. Greenland II. ii. 13   Lady Worthy..held it most advisable not to acquaint Silvius of the Injury he had done him; lest it might thereby aggravate him to take some Step which he might afterwards repent.
1811   M. Leadbeater Cottage Dialogues among Irish Peasantry in Brit. Rev. 1 406   He told Nancy a bit of his mind; but she was on her high horse and aggravated him; so he beat her, sure enough.
1858   Thackeray Virginians xvii. 134   Threats only served to aggravate people in such cases.
1891   ‘L. Malet’ Wages of Sin I. i. iii. 56   It'ud aggravate a saint, that it would, to hear you so taken up with a little peaked-faced bit of a maid.
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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