Palindromes

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Dinosaur, Jan 14, 2014.

  1. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    Attributed to Napoleon:
    I doubt he actually said it.

    I wonder if there is a good palindrome which is longer.

    My American Collegiate Dictionary (Random House, 1947-1949) has the following example:
    In addition to being shorter, the above is a poor one due to requiring the movement of the apostrophe and breakup of the word madam.

    A Google search found some longer ones, but non as pure as the Elba sentence which required neither breakup of words nor shifting of punctuation.
     
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  3. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    You mean like maybe because he didn't speak English fluently?

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    He ruled France, becoming a dictator toward the end. He was born in Corsica. As a child he spoke Corsican, which was a distinct language in those days. (Although today, like Sicilian, it almost qualifies as a dialect of Italian, and in any case most modern Corsicans are fluent in French since the island is French territory.) He was taunted for speaking French with a heavy Corsican/Italian accent.

    Because of the type of language (highly analytic, only slightly inflected, broad phonetic palette, peppered with foreign words), palindromes are extremely difficult to build in English. I wouldn't quibble about typography so long as the letters remain in the proper order!
     
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  5. Sorcerer Put a Spell on you Registered Senior Member

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    Here's a French one:

    Émile Éric, notre valet, alla te laver ton ciré élimé. (Émile Éric, our valet, went to wash your slimy jacket)
     
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  7. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Cool! And they don't worry about the diacritical marks.
     
  8. Trooper Secular Sanity Valued Senior Member

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    My favorite is In word salad, alas, drown I.
     
  9. siledre Registered Senior Member

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    the first one I ever saw was "a man a plan a canal, panama
     
  10. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Palindrome should really be a palindrome.
    Why not start calling it a Palindromemordnilap?
     
  11. Sorcerer Put a Spell on you Registered Senior Member

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    palap rolls off the tongue a little easier...
     
  12. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    A self-defining word. I ran across a name for that many years ago but I can't remember it. Other self-defining words include "short" and "sesquipedalian."
     
  13. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Autological.
    Its opposite is heterological.
    Try to answer this, without looking at the wiki reference.
    Is "heterological" autological or heterological?
    Can you see the problem?


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autological_word
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
  14. Olinguito Registered Member

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    The best palindrome I’ve ever come across is this one:

    Composed in 1943 by Peter Hilton (1923–2010), British mathematician.
     
  15. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    "Autological" is not in dictionary.com. Wikipedia offers "homologous" as a synonym, but the dictionary gives that word a much different meaning.

    The opposite, "heterological," is also missing, and the presumed synonym "heterologous" has nothing to do with language and words.

    I think the word I'm trying to remember is "autonym," but the dictionary gives a different definition for that (the name a person uses for himself), and even Wikipedia lists another definition first.

    Word puzzles are not difficult to create, even those that hinge on a logical conundrum.

    Thus "autological" could qualify as either (both?

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    ), and "heterological" qualifies as neither since both definitions are automatically self-contradictory.
     
  16. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    My favorite is probably "Mr Owl ate my metal worm."
     
  17. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Autonym is the opposite of xenonym.
    Inuit is an autonym, Eskimo a xenonym.
    The N word is a xenonym, and Black an autonym.
    Australian Aboriginals have adopted that xenonym, so Aboriginal is also an autonym.
     
  18. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Here's one I made myself.
    Napoleon never said the "Able was I..." palindrome.
    But one Christmas, unable to find a cooking implement to fry his garlicky French sausages, he said ruefully:
    "Noel O pan, Napoleon"
    (O meaning zero. I had to cheat a little)
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014
  19. Olinguito Registered Member

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    I just made one up myself as well:

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    Pets on no deep level peed on no step.
     
  20. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Very Good.
     
  21. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    'Lewd did I live, evil I did dwel' is my old favorite,
    along with, 'Naomi, sex at noon taxes, I moan.'
    However the oldest palindrome is said to have been uttered
    by Eve's husband upon their first meeting:
    'Madam, I'm Adam.'
     
  22. Olinguito Registered Member

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    Q: What did the mathematician say when he discovered the number ½?
    A: Never odd or even.


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  23. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    Rats live on no evil star
     

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