[lit-ideas] Re: Grice Grice

  • From: Donal McEvoy <donalmcevoyuk@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 7 Jul 2012 18:53:18 +0100 (BST)

Fiendishly clever, Watson - use a subject heading so that when it is bounced by 
Robert's settings it bounces back.

Gorilla Gorilla


 From: "Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx" <Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx>
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Sent: Saturday, 7 July 2012, 18:02
Subject: [lit-ideas] Grice Grice

was a tautonym
From today's World Wide Words, online:
"[S]cientific names in which the same word is used for genus and species 
are called tautonyms. For example, the red fox is Vulpes vulpes and the black 
rat is Rattus rattus, while the tiny bird called the wren 
that I sometimes notice in my garden rejoices in the mighty cognomen 
Troglodytes troglodytes."
In a way, Grice said,
"Do not be more informative than is required."
In Roman,
A: That's a rat.
B: A rat rat?
A: Yes, a rat rat.
Note that the fact that Latin is used instead of English obscures the 

Examples above, by Quinion:
That's a rattus rattus -- a black rat. Literally: a rat rat.
The implicature seems to be that a white, say, rat, is not a 'rat 
Note that 'rat rat' is possibly over-informative.
"I hunted a fox fox today".
"You mean a red fox?"
Latin "vulpes vulpes"
A: That's a fox there!
B: A yellow fox.
A: What are you getting at?
B: Not a fox fox ('nec vulpes vulpes').
Linnaeus, who invented all this, had no problems there, since "I always 
speak Latin to my child."
A: Troglodytes troglodytes.
B: Or, in plainer English, a wren wren.
A: Are you implicating that a troglodytes aedion is not a wren.
B: It is a wren, but not a wren (or double) wren.
Reduplication of the type that flouts Grice's "Do not be overinformative" 
can apply to any part of speech.
A: I liked it.
B: But did you like it like it?
"I like it very much"
"I like it very very much"
And so on.

Other related posts: