September 27, 2009

r.i.p., william safire

William Safire, self-appointed language maven of the nation, is dead. Many of his "On Language" columns in the Times magazine were, shall we say, not really inspired by linguistic research, but at least he didn't take himself too seriously:
And there were Safire “rules for writers”: Remember to never split an infinitive. Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixing metaphors. Proofread carefully to see if you words out. Avoid clich├ęs like the plague. And don’t overuse exclamation marks!!
This is how some linguists remember him:

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