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Thread: wrecked havoc

  1. #1
    Offroad's Avatar
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    Default wrecked havoc

    Dear friends...

    What does this blue sentence mean?

    It got dark early today!
    It wrecked havoc on my garden!

    to wreck havoc = make a huge mess, destroy ?

    Many thanks

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: wrecked havoc

    Surely the phrase is "to wreak havoc", not "wreck"?!

  3. #3
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: wrecked havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by Offroad View Post
    Dear friends...

    What does this blue sentence mean?

    It got dark early today!
    It wrecked havoc on my garden!

    to wreck havoc = make a huge mess, destroy ?

    Many thanks
    ********** NOT A TEACHER **********

    Hello, Offroad.

    May I most respectfully report that most American "experts"

    recommend wreak havoc as the preferred spelling and pronun-

    ciation. (wreak -- "reek")

    Thank you

  4. #4
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: wrecked havoc

    To add my worthless penny, that's what The American Heritage Dictionary says
    Usage Note: Wreak is sometimes confused with wreck, perhaps because the wreaking of damage may leave a wreck: The storm wreaked (not wrecked ) havoc along the coast. The past tense and past participle of wreak is wreaked, not wrought, which is an alternative past tense and past participle of work.

  5. #5
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: wrecked havoc

    A note for word-nerds. The AHD may just have said 'not wrought, which is an alternative past tense and past participle of work', but OED says it's metathetical (swapping sounds around: the OE past of 'work' (dunno what the present was) was wrochte).

    'Wrought' exists as a fossil in the collocation 'wrought iron'. It is also familiar from scripture, poetry, and quotations; in fact Samuel B. Morse's first telegraphic message is said to have been 'What hath God wrought?'

    b

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