Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Go Maple Leaves!

Something cool that I learned: the grammatical reason behind why we say “Toronto Maple Leafs,” “still lifes” and “sabertooths” instead of “Toronto Maple Leaves,” “still lives” and “saberteeth.” It has to do with a thing called exocentric or “headless” compounds.”

And I am fascinated.

(Via Bradshaw of the Future)

6 comments:

  1. I'm not sure that I've grasped this completely. I understand every word he says, but trying to think it out logically with the provided examples leaves me slightly confused. Perhaps I need to comment on his blog for a more complete explanation.

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  2. And the last paragraph answers my question exactly. I wonder how I missed that the first read-through? Oh well.

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  3. Yay understanding!

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  4. It's the perfect time of year for "headless compounds" too. Scary!

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  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  6. I welcome comments on my blog for more complete explanations about what the heck I'm talking about.

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