Mighty Red Pen

September 26, 2007

Happy birthday to MRP

Filed under: Overseen,Spellbound — mighty red pen @ 8:06 pm

MRP turns 1 on September 27. I’m celebrating by sharing the typo I found in Fowler. The typo in Fowler.


It says ponymous where it should say eponymous.

If eponymous refers to a word that is derived from someone’s name, for example, cardigan sweaters get their name from the 7th Earl of Cardigan, then does something that’s ponymous get its name from some kind of horse? Let’s make it a word.

As MRP’s birthday present to you, I’m sharing my favorite made-up word: indorknito. Use it in a sentence thusly, David was tempted to join in the fun when he heard the two monks telling Biblical jokes in Latin but, as he was traveling indorknito, he had to pretend he did not understand them.

Got a favorite made-up word? Please share. If not, try to use ponymous in a sentence. It’s MRP’s birthday after all.



  1. I’m too tired from work to think of how to use “ponymous” in a sentence, but as I was walking home from the Davis T stop on the bike path, I saw a sign that made me think of you. It says:

    All dogs must be
    on a leash
    and clean up after
    your dog

    I’m tempted to get a dog just to make all the other dogs in Somerville clean up after it.

    Comment by Jen — September 26, 2007 @ 8:59 pm | Reply

  2. A typo in Fowler? No, no, no, dear MRP. Surely, it English that is in error and not our most dear Mr. Fowler.

    Now, ponymous words. Hrm. Pons, of course, is Latin for a bridge. So, ponymous words must be words related to or concerning a bridge. For example, pontiff, which, I think, refers to the ability of a religious leader to be a metaphorical bridge between this world and the next. Or something.

    Pontoon, also, perhaps qualifies, by way of ponton, which is, as you know, a flat-bottomed sort of boat.

    And lastly, transpontine, naturally.

    Indorknito, indeed.

    Comment by David — September 27, 2007 @ 8:43 am | Reply

  3. Happy birthday to your site!

    “Indorknito” is great. My favorite made-up words of my own are “Sephora-ing,” “apostrophizing” or “apostrophization,” and, of course, “Grammarphile”! 🙂

    Comment by The Grammarphile — September 27, 2007 @ 12:49 pm | Reply

  4. I’m glad to see David in no longer indorknito.

    I am a fan of one that you introduced me to: “wasband” meaning an ex-husband.

    Comment by Molie — September 27, 2007 @ 4:53 pm | Reply

  5. Oh yes, wasband is a good one. I wish I could remember who shared that one with me originally!

    I didn’t really think David could possibly stay indorknito for long.

    Also, Jen, yours is great! Next time, take a pic and I’ll post it!

    Sephora-ing? I can only imagine what that is . . .

    Comment by mightyredpen — September 27, 2007 @ 6:22 pm | Reply

  6. Happy birthday!

    Comment by krodamai — September 27, 2007 @ 9:29 pm | Reply

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