A grade-A typo

Ben Zimmer, examining newspapers’ use of a common synonym for excreta, turned up this presumed typographical error in the San Jose Evening News for the 18th of May, 1916:

Clip from San Jose paper 1916: Austrian Construction Engineer on Roanoke Perished When Shit Went Down

Isn’t that when this sort of thing usually happens?

Well, not in this case, says Zimmer: “Go down in the sense of “happen” is dated to 1946 by OED and the slang dictionaries,” thirty years too late to have made the San Jose paper.

1 comment

  1. backwoods conservative »

    4 January 2015 · 8:47 am

    Construction engineers should learn to be more careful when they’re working on outhouses.

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