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)


James Crippen said...

Huh, I didn’t know Haida had epiglottals... Especially not a trill.

linguistlessons said...

It's only one of the dialects (Masset maybe?); in the other dialect(s) I think they're pharyngeals.

Anonymous said...

Hi Ryan,

It's Nathan from The Cottage School. I'm teaching Mark Twain to my freshies, and I have this idea. He uses a lot of dialect, and I want to get my kids listening to and analyzing modern (and ideally historical also) examples. I know that historical stuff and sociolinguistics isn't your area of research, but I don't have any clue where to even start my research; thought you might have a general direction to point me in, but if not, that's ok, too.

Either way, let me know. Best contact is through my Cottage e-mail.


Anonymous said...

I love your blog.