[Ads-l] fluffle

Chris Waigl chris at LASCRIBE.NET
Wed Jun 28 22:24:46 UTC 2023

What a rabbit hole :) ! Moonies and "northern Canada", huh?

Well, there are no wild rabbits in northern Canada, so if there's anything
to this I'd be tempted to look into how local groups talk about snowshoe
hares and Arctic hares.

Now, of course, this factoid has entered the mainstream and morphed into a
self-fulfilling prophecy.


On Wed, Jun 28, 2023 at 12:32 PM Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:

> I was recently forwarded this language factoid:
> "A group of wild rabbits is called a 'fluffle' and I've never loved the
> English language more."
> https://twitter.com/mastersrex/status/1315295446584168448
> I'm always curious how these things spread, and this one sent me down a
> rabbit-hole, appropriately enough. Here's a timeline:
> July 30, 2007: Wikipedia user Freeridr adds an unsourced claim to the entry
> for "rabbit": "A group of rabbits or hares are often called a 'fluffle' in
> parts of Northern Canada."
> https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Rabbit&diff=prev&oldid=148126554
> Apr. 29, 2008: The text of the Wikipedia "rabbit" entry (including the
> "fluffle" line) is copied over to New World Encylopedia, a site run by Sun
> Myung Moon's Unification Church.
> https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/p/index.php?title=Rabbit&oldid=699288
> Feb. 17, 2010: The "fluffle" line is deleted from Wikipedia by an editor
> ("Removed supposed naming of a group of rabbits as a 'fluffle', as I can't
> verify it").
> https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Rabbit&diff=prev&oldid=344646745
> Sept. 29, 2013: Reddit user AaronM97 asks, "What's a fact you know that
> will cheer me up?" Among the thousands of replies, user AmyEarhart submits
> "a group of bunnies is called a fluffle."
> https://web.archive.org/web/20130930183135/https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/1nexqv/whats_a_fact_you_know_that_will_cheer_me_up/
> https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/1nexqv/comment/cci0rsz/
> Oct. 5, 2013: Thought Catalog publishes "30 Random, Interesting Facts That
> Will Cheer You Up" based on the Reddit thread, including AmyEarhart's
> "fluffle" submission.
> https://web.archive.org/web/20131020055608/https://thoughtcatalog.com/timmy-parker/2013/10/30-facts-that-will-cheer-you-up/
> Mar. 19, 2014: Buzzfeed publishes "64 Facts That Will Make You Feel
> Incredibly Happy," which includes "a group of bunnies is called a fluffle."
> The listicle links to the New World Encylopedia entry for "rabbit," which
> retained the "fluffle" line despite its removal from Wikipedia.
> https://web.archive.org/web/20140319201849/https://www.buzzfeed.com/awesomer/facts-that-will-make-you-feel-incredibly-happy
> And from there it multiplied like rabbits all over the place!
> --bgz
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

Chris Waigl . chris.waigl at gmail.com . chris at lascribe.net
http://eggcorns.lascribe.net . http://chryss.eu

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

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