I don’t know if birth order has anything to do with grammar persnicketiness. Do eldest children have a tendency of dotting their i’s and crossing their t’s? Are youngest children inclined toward utter grammar rebellion?
Was that first known person to drop an “OMG” in 1917—yep, I said that date correctly, 1917—was he a youngest child? I bet he was.
Was the member of One Direction who once jumped off the stage to correct the grammar on a fan’s sign an oldest child? I have no idea, but that’s my guess.
Here’s what I do know:
- Lindley Murray, often called the “Father of Grammar” was an eldest child.
- Noah Webster, American English renegade, was the 4th child out of 5.
- Ben Franklin, English language revolutionary, was the 15th child out of 17. (Yikes, power to that mama…)
This is the Words You Should Know podcast, Season 2: Episode 9, and it’s time to go deeper.