A Dundrearyism is an aphorism, proverb, colloquial phrase, saying or riddle humorously combined with another in such a way to render it nonsensical. An example is the creation of the phrase "Birds of a feather gather no moss" from the well known "Birds of a feather flock together" and "A rolling stone gathers no moss."
The word comes from Lord Dundreary, a character in the stage play Our American Cousin by Tom Taylor, who is prone to making such mistakes. The phrases were mildly popular when the play premiered in 1858, but are now largely forgotten. The play itself is mostly remembered for being the one that U.S. President Abraham Lincoln was attending when he was assassinated.
- Michael Diamond, Victorian Sensation, London: Anthem, 2003, ISBN 1-84331-150-X, p.266
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