10

There are some quotations that people always seem to get wrong:

Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him well. [Real quote from Hamlet: "Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio."]

I have nothing to offer but blood, sweat and tears. [Real quote from Churchill: "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat."]

Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.* [Real quote from Mark Twain: "The report of my death is an exaggeration."]

I keep thinking there is a term for this, the way malapropism is a term for a misused word. I have the feeling I read the word somewhere, but all the Googling I've done doesn't give it up.

[*] This one is particularly galling to me, since Twain was such a master of understatement. Oh well ...

3

The closest I can come up with are just plain misquotation and corruption. How dull.

  • Dull, but accurate. As accurate as it gets I think. – Noldorin Jan 23 '11 at 0:47
  • Thanks, Jon. I'm going to accept this while wistfully hoping some white knight will ride in and save the day with the exact word I think must exist somewhere out there. Otherwise I may have to coin one myself. But that will have to wait for inspiration ... – Robusto Jan 25 '11 at 15:25
0

TV Tropes gives Beam me up, Scotty!

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.