Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
I noticed “end-all and beat-all” on a blog post today regarding web page styling: http://html5reset.org/. Seems like an obvious eggcorn deriving from “end-all and be-all” (which, tangentially, I tend to think of first as “be-all and end-all.”) Some Google counts:
“End-all and be-all”: about 1,280,000
“Be-all and end-all”: about 44,800,000
“End-all and beat-all”: about 143,000
“Beat-all and end-all”: about 574,000
Well don’t that beat all…
I heard another variation on this on NPR this morning in a story about a DEA program to collect old prescription drugs (audio here) – “end all TO beat all”
The whole saying “end-all and be-all”/”be-all and end-all” isn’t exactly transparent, so I can see why people incline towards the “beat all” construction, though to me that makes the “end-all” part make even less sense!
I love these.
that makes the “end-all” part make even less sense!
To me that phrase is mixed up with the “[war] to end all [war]s” construction. Both phrases essentially come to mean “the ultimate”.
*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .
Excellent eggcorn find. “Beat-all” is a much better match for “end-all” when it comes to active and decisive imagery: beating and putting and end to all challenges. By contrast, the “be” of “be-all” seems a bit too passive … almost Zen-like.
Last edited by jorkel (2010-09-27 15:24:35)