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#1 2008-10-27 16:15:10

DavidTuggy
Eggcornista
From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-12
Posts: 1776
Website

jump to the gun

Let’s not jump to the gun.

You said forget it, well don’t go jump to the gun, you’re laugthing this time next time you might be the one

Question is, Did you jump to the gun before reading the entire statement/ question?... Answer: Not really

“I think it was a jump to the gun just to pick a woman without really knowing her thoughts and values were,”

If at first they start to squeak dont jump to the gun and seperate them the female might be scared that a new hamster is in her cage.

Well, I kind of jumped to the gun and purchased a Sultan FOSSING foam mattress according to the quick mattress guide and laying in the bed for a few minutes

You neglected to read what I wrote correctly and jumped to the gun to attack me. I never had a beef with you, you came here.

No one really jumped to the gun. to answer it but they finally did. They basically. said they are sick of it.

It appears there was a bit of jumping to the gun on both sides. After first stating that she never discusses contract negotiations,

“Jumping the gun”, as I understand it, draws on imagery from sports, and the gun in question is the starting gun of a race. If you jump the gun you start out before the race begins, and either you are disqualified or everyone has to start over.

I suspect that this new phrase started off as a blend between “jump the gun” and “jump to conclusions”, which means coming to a conclusion before it is warranted (with the implication that it may well never be warranted.) Many cases can still be viewed as examples of this blend: both phrases would fit the context fine.

As an eggcorn, however, the imagery of jumping to man a stationary gun works pretty well for me. (Some of the 4700 ghits are referring to precisely that kind of scene.) The gun may be used defensively (e.g. an anti-aircraft gun on a ship) or offensively. In a number of usages, including some of those listed above, the notion of being instantly or unreflectively defensive, or instantly ready to attack, seems to be foremost, while the ideas of starting before an appropriate time or of jumping to conclusions, are backgrounded at best.

I wonder also if in some cases the notion of a starter’s gun may still be involved, but only as a source for metonymy: “the gun” = “the beginning”. So “jumping to the gun” might be “jumping to the beginning”, or “jumping to the start”, “being eager to start”, and so forth. That still would be an imagery shift, for me, from the strong connotation of disqualifying illegitimacy of “jumping the gun”.


*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)

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#2 2008-10-27 17:46:55

Peter Forster
Eggcornista
From: UK
Registered: 2006-09-06
Posts: 827

Re: jump to the gun

Those who jump the gun and those who jump to the gun seem polar opposites to me. One (the latter), is hopelessly obedient to authority and the other flaunts all authority. I suspect both terms come from a comparatively recent and yet unimaginably remote time and place. The examples you provide seem to illustrate both and/or either. I think the context may be military rather than sporting, but as ever, I’m quite happy to be wrong.

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#3 2008-10-27 18:22:42

DavidTuggy
Eggcornista
From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-12
Posts: 1776
Website

Re: jump to the gun

I can see what you mean, though (a) those who jump the gun in the original sense are not flouting (much less flaunting :-) ) authority, they are just too eager to get started, and (b) those who jump to the gun to shoot down an enemy are likely to be doing so less out of cow-towing to authority (or being coward into doing so) than from an instingt for self-perservation or just the killer instinged. (Stop it, David.)

Last edited by DavidTuggy (2008-11-01 14:05:25)


*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)

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#4 2008-10-27 19:19:31

Peter Forster
Eggcornista
From: UK
Registered: 2006-09-06
Posts: 827

Re: jump to the gun

Of course I don’t regret declaring a happiness to be wrong but I’m unhappy that my cheering cup (I’m merrily mulling) helped flaunt quite so publicly my my inability to distinguish flaunt from flout at such times. I’d rather be happy about something I’m happy to be happy about, but if eggcorn-hunting and wine didn’t mix I’d have to give up completely, so don’t be surprised at further errors…

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#5 2008-10-28 05:12:27

kem
Eggcornista
From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2007-08-28
Posts: 2146

Re: jump to the gun

What about understanding “jump to the gun” as jumping, i.e., having a startle reaction, when you hear the sound of a gun? It would fit most of the examples.

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#6 2008-10-28 15:51:14

TootsNYC
Eggcornista
Registered: 2007-06-19
Posts: 263

Re: jump to the gun

I think the idea of “jumping to the gun” can be “moving more quickly to action [shooting at the enemy] than is warranted or authorized just yet.”

Which fits quite nicely into any spot that you would use “jump the gun” (meaning “moving more quickly into the race than is authorized”).

I think this is a complete and total eggcorn.

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#7 2008-10-28 17:29:56

Peter Forster
Eggcornista
From: UK
Registered: 2006-09-06
Posts: 827

Re: jump to the gun

My impression of a military context may have come from the command, “Jump to it!” which blends easily with the notion of jumping the gun. There’s also the outside possibility that jumping to the gun removes any of the sexual connotations that ‘jump’ may have somehow acquired?

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#8 2008-11-04 09:20:41

DavidTuggy
Eggcornista
From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-12
Posts: 1776
Website

Re: jump to the gun

kem wrote:

What about understanding “jump to the gun” as jumping, i.e., having a startle reaction, when you hear the sound of a gun? It would fit most of the examples.

Possible, though I think I’d expect “jump at the gun” to express that imagery.


*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)

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#9 2008-11-04 23:37:22

kem
Eggcornista
From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2007-08-28
Posts: 2146

Re: jump to the gun

We “march to the sound of the drum,” “swing to the beat,” “react to the noise.” “Jump to (the sound of) the gun” doesn’t seem that odd. One problem with “jump at the gun” is that the semantic hole for “jump at” is already filled. In “jump at the chance,” “jump at” means to take quick advantage of.

Last edited by kem (2008-11-04 23:38:03)

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#10 2008-11-05 00:45:19

DavidTuggy
Eggcornista
From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-12
Posts: 1776
Website

Re: jump to the gun

Jump to the sound of the gun?? vs. Jump at the sound of the gun? “To” sounds like a repeated, expected, almost choreographed kind of reaction. (Except in the case of “react to” that you mentioned!) Yes, you are right that “jump at (the chance)” often means taking quick advantage. It’s conundrumous. I still think I’d tend to say “jump at X” if I meant “jump (from startlement) when X occurs/does its thing.” But as I said, “jump to” does seem possible to me with that sort of meaning.

As usual, you wish you could find a cooperative perp and ask him what he’s thinking when he says it.

Anyhow, I would not say “she jumped to the (sound of the) explosion” but would say “she jumped at the (sound of the) explosion”, not at all meaning that she was eager for it.

Last edited by DavidTuggy (2008-12-08 01:06:38)


*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)

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#11 2013-04-21 18:08:03

kem
Eggcornista
From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2007-08-28
Posts: 2146

Re: jump to the gun

DavidT’s little amuse-esprit in this thread slipped by without comment. The substitution of “coward” for “cowered” is a rather good eggcorn, IMHO.

The intensity of the eggcorn is upped by the fact that “cower” and “coward” come into English via two different linguistic venues. “Coward” traces back to Latin “cauda,” tail (turning tail?), “cower” comes into English on the Teutonic boat.

Examples:

Fan fiction: “Tiffany laughed as she poured more paint on the tall girl who was coward into the corner of the science building.”

More purple prose: “People had coward into the temple in the hills. ”

Roleplay forum: “Rippleclash had coward into the corner, obviously afraid of Kanook.”

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#12 2013-04-22 03:31:26

DavidTuggy
Eggcornista
From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-12
Posts: 1776
Website

Re: jump to the gun

Which way does the reanalysis go in this one?

I don’t think the examples you gave fit a scenario (acorn) “cower” > (eggcorn) “coward” very well. They are in contexts where you expect the past-participial -(e)d suffix, and if they said was cowarded or had cowarded it would be clearer to me. But in these examples I suspect that people are still construing the final d as being the participial suffix and not being part of the stem coward . If so this may be mostly an alternate spelling.

Instead I wonder if what happens is that people think of coward as meaning one who has been cowered, i.e. are thinking (acorn) “coward” > (eggcorn) “cower-ed” . I guess the shift then would be from “was coward” to “was a coward”.

How common is a transitive cower as opposed to cow ?


*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)

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#13 2013-04-22 04:39:28

kem
Eggcornista
From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2007-08-28
Posts: 2146

Re: jump to the gun

If you prefer the “cowarded” version, it’s out there:

Political forum: “he cowarded down in the presence of greatness”

Blog comment: “ he has cowarded down to king tiger like everyone else.”

Exercise blog: “ i have to admit i am one of those people who has cowarded inside in front of the airconditoner the last week or so. It has been so damn hot here”

Seems to me, though, that part of the reanalysis that leads to an eggcorn can be a reanalysis of speech parts (syntax) as well as a transformation of sound (phonetics) and meaning (semantics). When an adjective replaces a past participle, the speaker could be adding to the idiomatic arsenal of the adjective. “Girl who was coward into the corner” could be parallel to “girl who was light on her feet.” “Coward” for “cowarded” seems awkward to us because we do not allow “coward” to be modified by a prepositional phrase of motion. But perhaps some people believe it can be idiomized in this way..

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#14 2013-04-22 13:23:07

DavidTuggy
Eggcornista
From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-12
Posts: 1776
Website

Re: jump to the gun

You’re right. I was too sleepy to think straight. (I’m 100% with you that reanalysis of speech parts can be part of the reanalysis that leads to an eggcorn. It is part of the reverse eggcorn I suggested.)

Does anybody get drunkard onto the floor? or sluggard into bed, or laggard to the back of the line? (Can’t touch the n one …) If you get blaggard is that the same as blackmailed?


*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)

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