2012/05/16

Steakholders

In comments, from the excellent Pueblo Girl, a not uncommon Spanglish eggcorn, and one previously much enjoyed in English too. For example:
Stake versus Steak.
On one occasion, Garrick dined in the beef-steak room at Covent Garden, ready dressed in character for the part of Ranger, which he was to perform the same night at the other theatre. Ranger appears in the opening of the comedy; and as the curtain was not drawn up at the usual time, the audience began to manifest considerable impatience, for Garrick had not yet arrived. A call-boy was instantly dispatched for him, but he was unfortunately retarded by a line of carriages that blocked up the whole of Russel Street, which it was necessary for him to cross. This protracted still further the commencement of the piece; and the house evinced considerable dissatisfaction, with the cries of "Manager, manager!" When Garrick at length reached the green-room, he found Dr. Ford, one of the patentees, pacing backwards and forwards in great agitation. The moment the doctor saw him, he addressed him in a strong tone of rebuke. "I think, David, considering the stake you and I have in this theatre, you might pay more attention to its business." "True, my good friend," returned Garrick, "I should have been in good time; but I was thinking of my steak in the other." The appearance of their favourite soon pacified the audience, and Garrick went through the character with more vivacity than ever.
Ha ha, boom boom.

In Spanglish a steakholder is obviously the person left holding the buey, and life would have been simpler and less amusing had the English not renounced the pronunciation which gave the Spanish their estaca, the stake to which their steak could be conveniently tethered.

If Mateo Alemán had spoken English he might have made terrible corn with this passage in Guzmán de Alfarache, which compares the rewards of the cleric to those of the humble ox:
El religioso por El ha de serlo, tomándolo por fin principal y todo lo más por acesorio. Que claro está y justo es que quien sirve a el altar coma dél y sería inhumanidad, habiendo arado el buey, después del trabajo atarlo a la estaca sin darle su pasto.
 Someone remind me what this blog is about.

2 comments:

looby said...

It's highly amusing... keep going lad.

Justin Roberts said...

Hilarious!