Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2015-05-30
The forum hasn’t taken note of the confusion between the Latinate “gambol” and the Teutonic “gamble.” Both words hint at playful, risk-taking leaps through fields of green – one through fields of money, the other through fields of grass.
The terms interchange in both directions. “Gambol” for “gamble:”
: “Bought this new on a gambol that it would fit HP Photosmart C4100, but it doesn’t, ”
: “Born in 1916 in La Jolla, California, Gregory Peck took up acting in college on a gambol that would lead to a career. ”
: “Undaunted, he diverted his energies in a gambol that would ultimately result in policy shifts at Screen Actors Guild.”
“Gamble” for “gambol:”
: “Also, I think green roofs would catch on much quicker if they were magical fantasy lands with gambling unicorns.”
: “The tread of the stairs, measured for men, broke the dog’s gambling gait but not his momentum.”
:. “I liked the way their tails floated behind, undulating in the wake of their gambling gait”
Hatching new language, one eggcorn at a time.
A search for mutation in the other direction, from gambol to gambowl, brought up some curious changelings. There are straight confusions with gambling:
...and simple misspellings perhaps based on mispronunciation:
Then the interesting ones seem to be reading some kind of rollin’ ‘n’ tumblin’ into it, either in utero:
I did feel baby moving a lot at the top of my uterus today i think his gambowling lol.
Was lovely seeing the scan in detail, the baby was gambowling about in there as the women said she found it quite funny
... to those that take the bowling angle seriously,
he did a run and jump over the fence. He landed with a bump, gambowling into the grass. He stayed face down on the grass, silent and spread out
...especially the youtube videos, that show simple somersaulting:
From the liner notes of a CD reissue of “Safe as Milk” by Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band: ”...Cooder and St Clair intertwine with complex guitar lines which could’ve beamed in from Hendrix’s mythical South Saturn Delta as they delicately gamble in the ether…”
Googling “gambling about” yielded only one example of the eggcorn in the six pages (sixty hits) I checked:
“His mates are in the background – enjoyed watching them gambling about.” (from a caption to a picture of a piglet)
A similar Google sample of “gamble about” hits also yielded only one eggcorn out of 60 hits I examined. This one is interesting for the writer’s parenthetical comments about his usage of the term:
“I sat in the far field in the far corner for quite a while just lookin about and watching a young foal in the next field gamble about(do Osses/foals gamble or is just lambs that do it? anyroad lookin at it gamble sounds about right)”
I’m not surprised to find so few hits for this eggcorn, as the word gambol (whether or not misspelled) is not in most people’s working vocabulary.