Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Thanks for your understanding.
Chris -- 2018-04-11
Camels have a reputation for eating almost anything that won’t kill them, so the promise of straw that induced their return needn’t have been of any special quality. Maybe any straw will bring a camel back.
How might the perps be seeing this one? Maybe as a version of bringing the chickens home to roost? The camels were not coming back until that last straw was added? Otherwise, it’s a sweet mondegreen.
Last edited by David Bird (2019-04-10 17:58:47)
First class! (Whether or not or to whatever extent it is an eggcorn.)
I was entering it in my database: I had forgotten how many variants I already had of this phrase. “That was:
the bra that stroked the camel’s back (you may remember my son’s drawing of this)
the hay that struck the camel’s back
the camel that broke the straw’s back
what finally broke the straw
the camel’s back that pushed it over the edge
that broke the last straw on the camel’s back
the straw that broke the camel
the straw that broke the feather’s back
the ice that broke the camel’s back
the straw that broke your back
the needle that broke the camel’s back
Most of these were, of course, one-off errors as far as I know, ineligible for eggcornhood.
Re how they might be thinking of it, camels are surly beasts: maybe the straw (for whatever reason) brings the ill-temper back into the person affected (or into his eyes, in your first example). Of course in your second example it is a smile rather than a surly attitude that is restored…
Striking a cord (or five) is of course the normal way to play the guitar (though the guitar strings are not woven the way a prototypical cord might be. But misspelling chord as cord is plenty common (so is the return trip), so maybe that is all that is happening.
Still, it joins:
ring a chord
strike a bell
strike deep chords into you
Last edited by DavidTuggy (2019-04-12 12:41:03)
*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .
I do love the destabilizing cannonade of your lists, David. Hilarious.
It stands to reason that the camel’s feedbag can only take so much roughage. Or there may be a safety release for the howdah’s cargo compartment before the poor beast is overtaxed.
The current crisis is considered in Chad as multidimensional, insofar as the security risk due to Boko Haram has been the last straw that broke the camel’s bag, in a context of chronical food and nutrition insecurity, environmental degradation, agro-pastoral tensions, deficit of basic services and lack of sustainable livelihoods.