November 22nd, 2010


Is "scrap paper" an eggcorn?

This came up at dropoff in my son's fourth-grade class this morning. M-W has "scratch paper" (no citation) and not "scrap paper." So is "scrap paper" an eggcorn?

It's not in the eggcorn database.

Google books shows an earliest citation of "scratch paper" from 1779 1833, while the earliest citation for "scrap paper" is 1838.

[Edited to add: Thanks to Ben Zimmer for pointing out that my earlier source is clearly not from 1779, despite what Google Books says. But the 1833 source stands.]