A blog about any and all things linguistic. Topics can range from phonetics to syntax to aspects of specific languages. Updated weekly.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
The epiglottis qua severe throat infection
I was amused to see mentioned in an article the other day "epiglottis (severe throat infection)". The author was referring (or attempting to refer, depending on your opinion of how reference functions) to epiglottitis, inflammation of the epiglottis, which I imagine is indeed a fairly severe throat infection. So why the misspelling? (Note: I'll admit I had to look up whether there are one or two s's in "misspelling". While the answer turned out to be two, "mispelling" is actually more common, at least in terms of ghits.) My guess is copy editing and/or spell checking. Epiglottitis just looks too look, and like it has way too many t's. My guess is that -titi- sequence threw someone off. Who knows if it it was a person or a computer program, but either way it resulted in a rather humorous typo. Guess I'll have to wait until my next bout with strep before I can practice my Haida. (Obscurity rating: 10/10)
I live in New Brunswick, NJ with my wife Amanda, and am currently a 3rd year linguistics Ph.D. student at Rutgers. My research interests include phonetics, phonology, Optimality Theory, Native American languages (esp. Na-Dene and Algonquian), loanword adaptation, and syllable structure. Send comments/suggestions/questions to:
rdenzerk at eden.rutgers.edu