March 2020

Contents Related Letters

. . . Seeking New Words

Collective nouns can be delicious. Just ­consider these fine examples: a “sentence” of judges, a “scurry” of squirrels, a “superfluity” of nuns, a “pride” of lions, a “shiver” of sharks, a “murder” of crows (my personal favourite).

I’m embarking on a collection of new “­pluralia” — plurals for categories that (inexplicably) don’t yet have them. People. Professions. Animals. Inanimate things. Phenomena. Why not have a “harrumph” of lords, an “eye roll” of adolescents, a “slurp” of Labrador retrievers, or a “rash” of dermatologists?

The Literary Review of Canada has agreed to pass along your ideas for humorous, imaginative, or purely pragmatic collective nouns. If we get enough, we might be able to publish a fun column — or even get some into the dictionary!

Allan Peterkin, MD
Toronto


The Literary Review of Canada welcomes your comments and feedback, which we may edit for length, clarity, and accuracy. Write to letters@reviewcanada.ca.

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