Wordwatch Towers

A plain language guide to punctuation, grammar and writing well.


with 4 comments

2009 Toyota Corolla photographed in Washington...
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Swappage: like scrappage, only better.

That’s a new Toyota advertising slogan I heard on commercial radio the other day. Adding the suffix ‘age’ to otherwise perfectly innocent words is becoming increasingly common.

‘Swappage’ isn’t, of course, a ‘real’ word. But it is quite a funny one. Made me laugh, anyway.

And that’s something we need more of: humourage.

PS. Now I come to think of it, I’m not so sure ‘scrappage’ is a real word either. It’s not in my dictionary…

More neologisms


Written by Wordwatch

19/01/2010 at 4:11 pm

4 Responses

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  1. The suffix -age is from Old Fr and denotes (in noun form) an action (e.g., “voyage”), product (“wreckage”), aggregate (“mileage,” “signage”), fees (“postage”), or place (“vicarage,” “village”). (That’s all from that thick Oxford-type book on my coffee table.)

    But I (as well as hordes of California teens) like -age endings because you can turn almost any noun or verb into something new and more fun. A meal somehow becomes more fun when it’s “mealage.” Parents become “parentage.” Etc., ad nauseam.

    My fave example ever, from long ago, and not said ironically or humorously, was the US football announcer who told viewers, “We’ll be ready for the startage of play in a few moments.”

    As should be obvious, and as the Chief Blogagist suggests, an ordinary, existing noun or gerund (a verb acting like a noun) would almost always serve as well. If so inclined, one could just as well engage in spouse-swapping as spouse-swappage.

    Michael Farrell

    20/01/2010 at 4:38 am

    • Thanks very much for this really interesting additional informationage!


      20/01/2010 at 7:25 am

      • (OK, that’s enough. Ed.)


        20/01/2010 at 7:45 am

  2. HAHAHAHAHA! Good thing you have a good Ed. It’s catching, isn’t it?

    Michael Farrell

    20/01/2010 at 7:47 am

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