Date: Sun, 26 Feb 1995 17:58:28 -0500


Subject: Ozark philosophy

Is it not the case that count nouns, when used as attributives preceding

other nouns, often lose their countness? That is, can't one say pant leg, or

scissor blade? not to mention Ozark culture?

See Webster's Dictionary of English Usage under _attributive_: "The norm

has been to have singular nouns used as attributives - billiards, for

instance, even lost its -s to give us billiard ball and billiard table. What

seems to be a fairly recent trend toward using plural attributives in

contemporary English has . . . raised a few eyebrows."

So the copy editors may be eyebrow to eyebrow on this one.

- Allan Metcalf