Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
This one was left at the Wikipedia page Talk:Eggcorn. Refreshingly, it was submitted for discussion rather than added directly to the Eggcorn page.
“anal nitrite”, which is also eggcorned as “amyl nitrate”.
Asat (talk) 05:01, 18 March 2009 (UTC)
I believe that the amyl >> anal shift is a classical malapropism rather than an eggcorn. The only semantic reshaping I could imagine would be a chain through recreational drug use to sexual associations. (Apparently, the effects of amyl nitrite are compared to those of cocaine.)
Similarly with amyl nitrite >> amyl nitrate I don’t see any semantic reshaping; more likely ignorance of the difference between nitrite and nitrate.
I worked in a laboaratory over twenty years ago, where we kept amyl nitrate ampoules in case of a cyanide gas leak. A senior manager feared some might be stolen because of its (supposed) value on the black market. This was after he had been told of its popularity as a stimulant in the gay community.
Even way back then it was referred to as anal nitrate but I’m pretty sure that this was a pun rather than an eggcorn.