malapropism

(redirected from Malapropisms)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

malapropism

1. the unintentional misuse of a word by confusion with one of similar sound, esp when creating a ridiculous effect, as in I am not under the affluence of alcohol
2. the habit of misusing words in this manner
References in periodicals archive ?
Most of the above may be considered malapropisms, the use of a legitimate word incorrectly in context.
For example the unfortunate use of 'toxic assets' - a malapropism if there ever was one and typical of American English - coined to conceal the simplicity and clarity of 'bad debt'.
Nonetheless, the entertainment value of malapropisms has guaranteed their frequent occurrence in both classic literature and popular culture.
A malapropism is the incorrect use of a word that is similar in sound to the one intended but has a different meaning, usually with a humorous result.
Humorously confusing one word with another is a malapropism. The eponym for this error is Mrs.
This fun book, a mixture of puzzles and essays, covers an extremely wide range of topics, from the classics such as anagrams, palindromes, lipograms, charades and pangrams, to more specialized ones such as mnemonics, figures of speech, license plate language (IM LATE on a white Rabbit), shop names (Just Desserts, a confectioner), malapropisms, Tom Swifties ('I'll take the prisoner downstairs', said Tom condescendingly), and titles in search of authors (The Art of Hitchhiking by Nita Ryde).
After traveling with her uncle Alberico to Italy and New York (where she used to call him Unky Berky), she is touring Belgium with the same Alberjik, whose one and many "zoetrical" foibles are analyzed and detailed in Zapinette's supremely critical language, full of (more or less intended) malapropisms.
Many articles have been published over the years documenting the colorful range of malapropisms uttered by patients, transcriptionists, and, even physicians.
It relies for comic impact instead largely on Bannister's Norman Wisdom act and mindless malapropisms.
Before long, we expect the media will again be highlighting the President's frequent malapropisms and writing more telling analysis of his leadership.
At first, one might easily get the idea that the author meant to use the term "skepticism" rather than "pessimism." (English is not the author's first language, and the publisher apparently assigued no editor to correct Santander's grammar, syntax, malapropisms, and so forth.) But like some nontheistic writers, Santander has a very negative view of humanity and believes that the search for happiness on Earth is mostly futile.
In contrast to Al Gore, who once went weeks without a formal meeting with the press, Bush remained readily accessible to reporters -- even after his off-the-cuff malapropisms became fodder for late-night comics.