What’s a Retronym?
by Maeve Maddox
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Earlier than that, back when he mowed the grass, my big brother longed for an “electric mower.” Now the kind of mower he called a “lawnmower” is called a “push lawnmower.”
“Cloth diaper” and “push lawnmower” are retronyms.
The term retronym came into the language in 1980 when William Safire credited Frank Mankiewicz, president of National Public Radio, with its first use.
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I never heard of this. Have you?
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