Queer English - other oddities
Some other quirks found in modern English
Other puzzling questions
- Why does a shipment go by car and a cargo go by ship?
- Why does no word in the English language rhyme with month, orange, silver or purple?
- Why are they called stairs inside but steps outside?
- Why is abbreviation such a long word?
- Did you know that 'verb' is a noun?
- If you've read a book, you can reread it. But wouldn't this also mean that you would have to member somebody in order to remember them?
- Is there a shorter word for monosyllabic?
- Why do fat chance and slim chance mean the same thing?
- Why do overlook and oversee mean opposite things?
- Why do people use the word irregardless?
- Why do we say something is out of whack? What is a whack?
- Why do we say something's out of order when it's broken but we never say in of order when it works?
- Why does 'cleave' mean both split apart and stick together?
- Why does 'slow down' and 'slow up' mean the same thing?
- Why does flammable and inflammable mean the same thing?
- Why doesn't onomatopoeia sound like what it is?
- Why don't we say 'why' instead of 'how come'?
- Why is 'Crazy man!' an insult, yet 'Crazy, man!' is a compliment?
- Why are a wise man and wise guy opposites?
- Why is it that we recite at a play and play at a recital?
- Why is a person who plays the piano called a pianist but a person drives a race car not called a racist?
- Why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham?
- Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of that song?
- Why is there only one Monopolies Commission?
- Why do scientists call it research when looking for something new?
- If vegetarians eat vegetables, what do humanitarians eat?
- When I erase a word with a pencil, where does it go?
- Why do English teachers insist that a double negative forms a positive? There ain't no logic to that.
A linguistics professor was lecturing to his class one day.
"In English," he said, "A double negative forms a positive. In some languages, though, such as Russian, a double negative is still a negative. However, there is no language wherein a double positive can form a negative."
A voice from the back of the room piped up, "Yeah, right."
- Why are there five syllables in the word monosyllabic?
There was a young poet named Dan,
Whose poetry never would scan.
When told this was so,
He said, "Yes, I know.
It's because I try to put every possible syllable into that last line that I can."