Posted by: Ivy Wigmore
business jargon, eggcorn, meanings of common expressions
Which is correct?
|Google Wave was expected to enable a ________ in business collaboration but it didn’t play out that way.
a. C change
b. sea change
Sea change means transformation. I was surprised to see people searching for the meaning of C change, but they’re out there. C change is an eggcorn — a word or phrase mistakenly used because it sounds like the correct term.
“Sea change” originated in Shakespeare’s play “The Tempest,” which was written about 1610. Ariel sang the following in a song to Ferdinand, describing the physical transformation that the sea had wrought in his drowned father.
Full fathom five thy father lies;
Of his bones are coral made;
Those are pearls that were his eyes:
Nothing of him that doth fade
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.
According to Michael Quinion of World Wide Words, “sea change” first began to be used metaphorically in the late nineteenth century. Read more