Myriad Malapropisms

When I read a Facebook post today from a woman experiencing “a Miriam of emotions” I decided to see if anyone else had committed this malapropism on the web.

I found two:

Sasuke outwardly sighed out and showed a Miriam of emotions running through his eyes.
This book is well written, and pulls a Miriam of emotions from deep within the heart
(Don’t search for this one; it’s on a page that brings up a warning.)

Dropping “emotions" from the search phrase brought up plenty of legitimate uses, most of them referring to the Bible:

Just as we have been told that there is a Jesus of history and Christ of faith, we are now being told of a Miriam of history and a Mary of faith.

But there are a number of goofy ones too:

A miriam of laser plotters that are capable of processing A3, A2, A1, B1 and AO size drawings. 
I could keep going but all in all the perfect place to stay if you're going for a Miriam of reasons - big family - surfing - privacy - security - ease.
They also went through a Miriam of excuses.
 The city comes alive with a miriam of light displays.
Did a test drive with a technician and all I got was a Miriam of excuses including design, the xdrive, road camber, tyres, and finally the wheel size!
You will then make your way to the world famous Tangalooma Wrecks for a guidedsnorkel, comparable to the Great Barrier Reef, snorkeling through 15 scuttled shipwrecks, amongst a Miriam of fish.

It’s striking that most of these folks capitalize the name. Who in the world do they think Miriam is? Perhaps someone like Shakespeare’s Cleopatra of whom Enobabus says “Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale her infinite variety.”

And of course they all include the “of” which traditionalists object to. 

See page 153 of my book on this point.


Kate Karp said...
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Kate Karp said...

Perhaps you could find an accepted definition in your Miriam-Webster, Collegial Edition.