Wordwatch Towers

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

Sexism and eggs

with 5 comments

Seven eggs being fried (sunny side up) in a fr...
Image via Wikipedia

In a recent post about similes and metaphors I used the word ‘garrulous’.

The definition of ‘garrulous’ in the Oxford Dictionary of English is to ‘talk excessively, especially on trivial matters’. It includes this example of its use:

A garrulous woman who liked to chat about eggs

Naturally, it’s a woman doing the excessive talking. But, er, eggs? Is that the best they could come up with? Why not shoes? Or shopping? Or macroeconomics? Oh no, scrap that last one; we are, after all, talking about Mrs G.


Find out more about the sexism tucked away in various nooks and crannies in the Oxford Dictionary of English.

Chickens and Latin


5 Responses

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Sandra Lee, Deborah Bennison. Deborah Bennison said: Sexism and eggs: http://wp.me/pFKkP-1kJ […]

  2. For once I’m inclined to agree – making this gender specific is pointless.

    Apt, though! 🙂


    24/10/2010 at 9:09 am

    • Hi, Ron — yes, they are very fond of their gender specificity at the ODE. Not usually in a consciousness-raising way.


      24/10/2010 at 10:37 am

  3. Those eggs in your photo do not look well at all, he said garrulously.

    Michael Farrell

    24/10/2010 at 5:55 pm

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