Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
The word “disheveled” is well nigh impossible for English speakers to parse. It comes from O.Fr. descheveler, meaning “with hair in disarray”, and ultimately from L. capillus, or “hair”. Though originally for the coif, it has come to be applied to general disorder, of dress or environment.
Dish-shoveling. That’s the only way my kitchen might be cleaned today, unfortunately.
Another alternative: disleveled.
Turns out tussled and tousled come from the same root, though I would count tussled here as an eggcorn.
Disshuffled. In some ways, the easiest permutation in this group.
David mentioned “tussled” for “tousled” above. See also .
More of the thousands of examples of “tussled hair” for “tousled hair:”
: “slightly tussled hair on Hank”
: “He shuffles to the kitchen for coffee where he meets Premier Christy Clark, whose unevenly tussled hair makes it obvious she slept on her right side.”
: “Earlier in the evening, Vergne—in a dark suit and with his characteristic tussled hair swept neatly off his face—greeted guests streaming into the outdoor bar.”
“Tussled hair” shows up in current published sources at two percent of the frequency of “tousled hair.” See .
I predict that “tussled hair” will displace “tousled hair” within fifty years. Straight-haired and bald people who insist on using “tousled” will be banished to a high-humidity island off the coast of Brazil and forced to wear curly wigs.