Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
I’m surprised I haven’t seen this one posted. Perhaps it’s because its eggcorn status is slightly questionable, as it doesn’t make more sense per se. My cite for it is the Toronto Star, October 13, 2007, page L12, “Thinking outside the bowl” by David Rider: “In Canada, neither the federal nor provincial governments have followed suit.”
Maybe because “follow suit” is the original phrase; it comes from card games like bridge in which the first player in a given round plays a card, and each of the other players must play another card of that same suit if they have any. “Follow suite” is the eggcorn, one that I hadn’t heard before.
56,400 for “follow suite”
1,870,000 for “follow suit”
Merriam-Webster Online at m-w.com:
— follow suit
1: to play a card of the same suit as the card led
2: to follow an example set
Well, now, what do you know! I grew up with the “suite” spelling for sets of cards, even as they were always pronounced like “suit.” It didn’t occur to me even to check, as I was so familiar with that one. And when I’m playing cards, no one is writing it down! But now that you tell me, I see that it is so. Quite remarkable—it’s rare for me to make an error in spelling, because knowing correct spelling is my job. But cards don’t really come up in the text I work with.
Last edited by sesquiotic (2007-10-14 23:48:27)
But obviously you’re not the only one, since Google says it has “about 56,400” hits for “follow suite”. So we do have an eggcorn here, but this thread is mistitled. How do we fix that?
Hm! I just tried and I don’t think I can. I think this forum software doesn’t allow it. I’ll poke around some more, but we might need an admin to do it.
Hi. I made the requested fix. —Pat
We had a previous discussion on suit/suite. I didn’t get a chance to reread it to see if anything was really resolved, but here it is:
bedroom suite (vs. suit) by Lisa Contribute! 11 2007-05-09 09:44:35 by jorkel