Literal-Minded

Linguistic commentary from a guy who takes things too literally

The Nouning of Back to School

Posted by Neal on September 3, 2009

I wrote about this a few years ago; here’s my updated report at Visual Thesaurus, using corpus resources that weren’t available back then.

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3 Responses to “The Nouning of Back to School

  1. The Ridger said

    Prepositional phrases can be subjects, though, can’t they?

    Under the bed is where we found the cat.
    Under a tree is not a safe place to stand in a thunderstorm.

    Or are these some kind of clipped cleft structure?

    • The Ridger said

      ps – I posted this over there under a different name:

      On the topic of this article, remember the Staples commercial a couple of years ago? The man skipping through the store in August with a soundtrack of “It’s the most wonderful time of the year” and just when you were keyed up to scream “Christmas already?????” the draggy kids come into view and it’s Back to School!

  2. This reminds me of a “verbing of a noun” that I heard recently and found amusing. Someone was talking about learning some new languages and referred to the process as “getting Rosetta Stoned”.

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