Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
This for “faux pas” has an amazing number of hits. “Paux” isn’t a French word, as far as I know. Which isn’t very far.
PS It’s probably got mangled with “je ne peux pas”
Last edited by JuanTwoThree (2011-05-21 06:02:36)
Will wonders never cease. Possible scenario: Faux pas => Fox pas => Fox pox => Faux paux. That suggests that Faux paux stems from someone returning “fox pox” to its imagined roots.
BTW, your post leads directly to another poteaux rose/eggcorn for the archives, in the form of “a faut pas”. A faux pas is a false step; a faut pas is a “must not”.
The erudite polymath, Freeman Dyson, who is a mathematical physicist, and who I admire as a scholar and have learnt much about science from his writings, made such a faut pas in his essay
Archives of Iranian Medicine
Sorry to include the following, for completeness:
Les fauts pas ne sont pas à commettre en sa compagnie
Des fauts pas, de la maladresse, des paroles incomprises !
I may be wrong but faux pax is probably the plural of faux pas
Perhaps the other way around – Faux pax is singular, faux pas is plural. My French is not that great.
Foo pah is my favorite variant. They all are self-iconic, which is always enjoyable.
*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .
I agree, an outstanding example of self-referential airudition.