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Chris -- 2018-04-11

#1 2011-03-09 21:00:09

.NetRolller 3D
Registered: 2010-12-10
Posts: 15

"For whom the bell TOILS" (tolls)

While the bell-ringer may be toiling hard to get the bell to sound, the bell doesn’t “toil” – it “tolls”. Seems to be a rather common eggcorn, of over 8 kiloghits (though some of that may be fake).

See for an example.



#2 2011-03-10 19:48:03

From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-11
Posts: 2149

Re: "For whom the bell TOILS" (tolls)

The toiling of the bell-ringer seems rather beside the point, to me. I can sort of see the bell itself as toiling, though the unrest of roiling may be in there as well. (The moaning and the groaning of the bells and so forth.) I do not find big-bell music, by and large, to be restful (I have lived on a second story across a narrow street from a Mexican Catholic church); a carillon, of course, is a different animal. Still, I would guess it is more a malapropism than an eggcorn (i.e. people just think it is the proper word for a bell being rung; they don’t think about the laborious meanings of toil in so doing.)

*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)



#3 2011-03-12 00:51:17

From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2007-08-28
Posts: 2589

Re: "For whom the bell TOILS" (tolls)

We can add Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Toils (derived, of course, from the line in a John Donne’s prose poem “and therefore never send to know for whom the bell toils; it toils for thee.”) to our list of potted book titles.

Hatching new language, one eggcorn at a time.



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