Malaprops

I've been slowly working my way through a load of old Smithsonian magazines that I got at a library booksale a few months ago. Last night, it was the one from January 1995, and contained an article by James J. Kilpatrick entitled "Mrs. Malaprop's manged proses set a president."

As many of you know, Mrs Malaprop was one of the characters in Richard Sheridan's comedy The Rivals. She is famous for using the wrong words and coming up with some ridiculous malapropisms.

As I've been known to mangle the odd sentence in my time (as the t-shirt goes "it's uncredible how well I am at grammar"), I've always got a kick out of a funny badly written sentence or two. I can remember a couple of my favorites from when I was a teenager:

"The doorball rang. I came down the stairs and opened the front door in my pajamas."

"A large hole has been found in the main street through Watford. Police are looking into it."

As well as the Wikipedia entry, it's nice to see there are now other places on the web that are collecting up these literary gems [link 1] [link 2].

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