Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Dogberry and Malaprop

Colin Cornouiller
Colin Cornouiller et Mme Maladroit longeron au salon…
Mme Maladroit: I think you should accept the New Year honours award.

Colin Cornouiller: I don’t think so.

Mme Maladroit: Some people like to slide away from the reality of viewing a truth horse in the mouth.

Mme Maladroit
Colin Cornouiller: What are you saying? What verbosity! And a Dogberry to boot! Like George Bush’s "It will take time to restore chaos and order."

Mme Maladroit: Dogbelly?

Colin Cornouiller: Dogberry. Like a Malapropism.

Mme Maladroit: I know Dogberry. Just kidding you with my capricious creativity.

Colin Cornouiller: Sure it wasn’t your fluctuating dementia?

Shakespeare’s Dogberry with lines like “You are thought here to be the most senseless (sensible) and fit man for the constable of the watch…” (Much Ado About Nothing, Act 3, scene 3, c1598) was well ahead of Sheridan’s (1775) Mrs Malaprop with lines like "She's as headstrong as an allegory (alligator) on the banks of Nile." Donald Davidson observes that doing such things with words is indicative of the complexities of cognition.

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