Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Nonwords



Bill from Merit, Michigan, called during Tuesday’s show to highlight one of his pet peeves: the use of irregardless when one means regardless. While it shows up in speech and is even discussed in some dictionariesit is definitely nonstandard. Using it in writing deservedly brands the user as careless at best, ignorant at worst.

There are a few similar instances:

Preventative instead of preventive.   A book by Murli Desai bears the title, A Rights-Based Preventative Approach for Psychosocial Well-being in Childhood

Analyzation instead of analysis.  The table of contents in the Annual Report of the Bureau of Labor and Industrial Statistics, Volume 7, consistently used the word analyzation.

·      Orientated instead of oriented. S. Jacob wrote Human Anatomy: A Clinically-Orientated Approach.

·      Annoyment instead of annoyance.  “He had noticed that an uneasiness from one source of annoyment or resentment could easily transfer itself to a lesser one, so that putting that thing right did not always remove the feeling of being annoyed that it seemed to cause.” This is found in Robert Fielding’s Other People Other Words.

·      Conversate instead of converse. While an obvious back formation from conversation, it simply wasn’t needed; converse came into English in 1340.

·      Botheration instead of bother. Russ Hoover’s Demand Healing: The Advanced Study of Mood and Ego Remission uses it constantly, as in, “Obviously, we are all aware of things that are not okay and for which we experience no level of botheration.”

·      Unthaw instead of thaw.  In 1978, Harry Brody wrote, When the Bells Unthaw.


Available from McFarland & Co.: Word Parts Dictionary, 2nd edition

Nook edition

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Listen to Mike’s program in real time every Tuesday morning, 9:10 - 10:00 a.m. EST, by going to wtcmradio.com and clicking on Listen Now. You’ll also find about a month’s worth of podcasts there under The Ron Jolly Show.




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