Nerdiest Correction Ever

An item in the Extra Bases baseball notebook last Sunday misidentified, in some editions, the origin of the name Orcrist the Goblin Cleaver, which Mets pitcher R. A. Dickey gave one of his bats. Orcrist was not, as Dickey had said, the name of the sword used by Bilbo Baggins in the Misty Mountains in "The Hobbit"; Orcrist was the sword used by the dwarf Thorin Oakenshield in the book. (Bilbo Baggins's sword was called Sting.)

My wife passes along this correction posted at the New York Times Baseball Blog:

An item in the Extra Bases baseball notebook last Sunday misidentified, in some editions, the origin of the name Orcrist the Goblin Cleaver, which Mets pitcher R. A. Dickey gave one of his bats. Orcrist was not, as Dickey had said, the name of the sword used by Bilbo Baggins in the Misty Mountains in “The Hobbit”; Orcrist was the sword used by the dwarf Thorin Oakenshield in the book. (Bilbo Baggins’s sword was called Sting.)

Both BuzzFeed‘s Dave Stopera, PJ Tatler‘s Bryan Preston, and the Baltimore Sun‘s Luke Broadwater call it “the nerdiest correction ever.” I’m hard pressed to disagree.

Gawker‘s Max Read ups the NYT for nerdiness.

Orcrist, as everyone knows, was Thorin Oakenshield’s sword. But it’s not the Times‘ fault! It’s the fault of Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey, who doesn’t even know the origin of his bats’ names.

[…]

For extra credit, note the typographical error in the print edition that was corrected for web! For extra-extra credit, note why “Orcrist the Goblin Cleaver” is not, technically, the name of Thorin Oakenshield’s sword.

For the record, despite having read the books in question, I haven’t a clue.

 

 

 

 

FILED UNDER: Media, Popular Culture, Quick Takes, Sports
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. PD Shaw says:

    Is it because “Orcrist” means “Goblin Cleaver”?

  2. mantis says:

    Orcrist means “goblin cleaver” in Sindarin, an Elven language.

  3. mantis says:

    D’oh. PD beat me to it. Let us retire to the nerdery!

  4. That’s awesome.

  5. Ernieyeball says:

    “(text);” “(text)”;

    My day is over time, to spark up.

  6. Ernieyeball says:

    AGHHHHH@%!&%!?

  7. A Nerd says:

    That is wonderfully redundant to call it Orcrist The Goblin Cleaver, but then again, Legolas Greenleaf is equally redundant as that is also just a translation. Also, the name Aragorn gets in Lothlorien, Elessar, the Elf-Stone, is also just a translation. Tolkien was nice about giving names in made up (very well crafted) languages, and then providing a translation.

  8. Isley says:

    They still didn’t get the correction right. I was so upset I wrote this open letter on my website:

    http://www.isleyunruh.com/?p=4519

    I hope the New York Times fixes this asap.

  9. Boyd says:

    Layers of editorial oversight, indeed.

  10. Shelby says:

    I’m guessing the typo Max Read refers to is the inclusion of the semicolon inside, rather than after, the quotation marks on “The Hobbit”. There’s a split among copyeditors over whether to put commas and periods inside or after the ending quote mark, but universal agreement that a semicolon comes after it.

  11. sam says:

    Since we’re being LOTR nerdy. Tolkien once taught at the University of Kentucky. If you want to know where he got most of those Hobbit names, look in Louisville phonebook. Oh, and their principle export crop is …..?

  12. A voice from another precinct says:

    You guys have WAY to much free time.

  13. rodney dill says:

    …and no mention of Glamdring or Ringil.

  14. Franklin says:

    There’s a split among copyeditors over whether to put commas and periods inside or after the ending quote mark …

    I didn’t know there was even a split: I was taught to put them inside the quote mark. But it doesn’t make sense in most cases, so I put it outside regardless of my training.

  15. mantis says:

    Oh, and their principle export crop is …..?

    Pipe-weed…er, um, tobacco?

  16. bordenl says:

    My nerd cred is completely shot. I saw the original, and thought that was sort of not right, but Orcrist was definitely the goblin cleaver so I let it go.

  17. bordenl says:

    This correction may not disrupt the romance that the Mets writers have with Dickey the English major.