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Word Myths
Debunking Linguistic Urban Legends

Wilton, David
Publisher:  Oxford University Press
Year Published:  2004  
Pages:  222pp   Price:  $27.95   ISBN:  0-19-517284-1
Library of Congress Number:  PE1584.W55 2004   Dewey:  422--dc22
Resource Type:  Book

Takes on linguistic urban legeds, not just debunking them but also examining why they are told and what they tell us about ourselves.


Table of Contents


1. What is a Linguistic Urban Legend?
2. Where Do They Come From?
3. How Do They Vary?
4. Why Do We Tell Them?
5. How Are They Told?
6. Who Tells Them?
7. Are We Being Spoilsports?
8. How Do We Ferret out the Truth?

Part I: Debunking the Big Boys
9. Ring Around the Rosie
10. OK
11. The Whole Nine Yards
12. Rule of Thumb
13. They Speak Elizabethan English in the Appalachians
14. 500 Eskimo Words for Snow
15. Windy City
16. Hot Dog

Part II: The Elizabethan E-mail Hoax
17. Throw the Baby Out with the Bathwater
18. Raining Cats and Dogs
19. Dirt Poor
20. Threshold
21. Pease Porridge
22. Bring Home the Bacon
23. Chew the Fat
24. Trencher / Trench Mouth
25. Bed and Board
26. Upper Crust
27. Wake
28. Graveyard Shift
29. Saved by the Bell and Dead Ringer

Part III: Posh, Phat Pommies
30. Ichthys
31. Cabal
32. AWOL
33. Fuck
34. News and Tips
35. Gold
36. Spud
37. Wog
38. Nylon
39. SOS
40. Pommy
41. Phat
42. Posh

Part IV: Canoe
43. Devil to Pay
44. Let the Cat out of the Bag
45. Cold Enough to Freeze the Balls off a Brass Monkey
46. Over a Barrel
47. Mind your Ps and Qs
48. Under the Weather
49. Knock Off
50. Son of a Gun
51. Railroad Origins - Balling the Jack / Balls to the Wall
52. Ethnic Origins - Lynch / Jazz / America

Part V: Hookers, Harlots, and Condoms
53. Hooker
54. Harlot
55. Condom
56. Crap
57. In Like Flynn
58. Real McCoy
59. Dixie
60. Upset
61. Pumpernickel
62. Ellis Island Name Changing

Part VI: The Perils of Political Correctness
63. Picnic
64. Nitty Gritty
65. Jimmies
66. Indian / In Dion
67. Indian Giver
68. Squaw
69. Hip / Hep
70. Gay
71. Faggot
72. Handicap
73. Politically Correct
74. Tinker's Damn

Part VII: Wax Tadpoles and Jelly Doughnuts
75. I am a Jelly Doughnut
76. Chevy No Go
77. Bite the Wax Tadpole
78. Turn it Loose and Fly Naked
79. Kangaroo
80. Gringo



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