Sunday, 9 March 2014


Thursday, July 4, 2013

William Archibald Spooner used to make funny verbal slips which later came to be known as ‘Spoonerisms.’

Spooner's Spoonerisms

Fighting a liar                          Lighting a fire

Tons of soil                            Sons of toil

Our queer old Dean               Our dear old Queen

You've tasted two worms      You've wasted two terms

Our shoving leopard              Our loving shepherd

Is the bean dizzy?                   Is the Dean busy?

Some of my friends have already given good examples. Here are some more for you to enjoy.

·       It is pouring with rain. (It is roaring with pain.)
·       Tease my ears (Ease my tears)
·       Go and shake a tower ( Go and take a shower)
·       Chipping the flannel ( Flipping the channels)
·       Chewing the doors (Doing the chores)
·       Trim your snow tail (Trim your toe nails)
·       Plaster man (Master plan)
While talking about spoonerisms, I am reminded of the question my daughter asked me when she was three or four. ‘Why is a ‘butterfly’ called so? Is it made of butter?’ I couldn’t give her aconvincing reply and drew her attention to something more interesting.  However, after many years, I got a convincing though not an authentic explanation for this. These insects flutter by. When the tongue slips and the consonants are interchanged, ‘flutter by’ becomes ‘butter fly’. If any of you have a more logical explanation, please let me know.
Srikanth Tamraparni wanted me to explain the difference in the use of ‘Until’ and ‘till.’

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