Profiteer rolls

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Seen on a buffet table in Glasgow: "Profiteer Rolls" for "Profiteroles".

There are a fair number of other examples Out There, but not enough to merit a separate dictionary entry, much less to eclipse the original, as in the case of Jerusalem Artichokes.

The OED's etymology:

Apparently < Middle French, French profiterole (although this is first attested later in the sense relevant to sense 1: 1549; 1881 in sense 2) < profit profit n. + -erole , diminutive suffix (extended form of -ole -ole suffix).
French profiterole is attested slightly earlier in its literal sense ‘small profit’: 1542.

[h/t Bob Ladd]


  1. Y said,

    July 3, 2019 @ 4:21 pm


    "Can we get a pink pedophile?"

    — Small girl in front of a display of petits fours at the Pasta Shop in Berkeley.

    (San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 14, 2016)

  2. bozo said,

    July 3, 2019 @ 5:06 pm

    Perhaps it could be served as an alternative to a financier.

  3. Chandra said,

    July 3, 2019 @ 5:54 pm

    My first thought was that this seems like an Autocorrect mistake rather than an eggcorn, but then I suppose it would be unlikely not to have been caught as the only prominent word on the sign.

  4. D-AW said,

    July 3, 2019 @ 7:02 pm

    @bozo : or, more to the point, a "millionaire shortbread":

  5. Dorothy Bishop said,

    July 4, 2019 @ 1:21 am

    reminds me of a time at a restaurant when someone asked the young waiter “what is this?” re a small orange fruit (physalis). He went away to ask and then declared it was a “syphillis”

  6. Keith said,

    July 4, 2019 @ 3:19 am

    My father-in-law once told me about seeing a "Moment ranci" in a pastry shop.

  7. Rodger C said,

    July 4, 2019 @ 8:16 am

    Are they anything like synonym rolls?

  8. Ray said,

    July 4, 2019 @ 10:23 am

    I once heard a newscaster reporting about some governmental policy change (I forget what; some unwelcome executive order?), and he called it a “fiat accompli” (not an eggcorn, more like a “leghorn”?) :-)

  9. Amanda Adams said,

    July 5, 2019 @ 7:55 am

    You folks at Language Log know everybody.
    I followed the link to read about Jerusalem Artichokes (great soup, I agree); but I see that Wikipedia is recommending glyphosate in that entry. Can anything be done?

  10. Philip Taylor said,

    July 5, 2019 @ 9:12 am

    Amanda ("I see that Wikipedia is recommending glyphosate in that entry. Can anything be done ?"). Of course. Wikipedia is a wiki. Edit it.

  11. Terry Hunt said,

    July 5, 2019 @ 8:17 pm

    Amanda – The Wikipedia article is not recommending glyphosate, it's reporting that "Farmers growing Jerusalem artichokes who then rotate the crop may have to treat the field with a weedkiller (such as glyphosate) to stop their spread."

    As a matter of principle, Wikipedia is not meant to be a 'how to' manual (and material of that nature is regularly deleted if inserted), but a tertiary encyclopedia neutrally summarising information from secondary (and occasionally primary) sources. It should never be made to "recommend" anything in its own voice, but conversely it should not contain judgements – rather it should only present established facts as currently understood, or a balance of viewpoints where scholarly disagreements exist.

    That said, the passage in question is not cited to any source, so you (or anybody) would be entitled to remove it (explaining why in the edit summary as part of the process) , thus making it 'disputed', and it should not then be restored unless a 'reliable source' is found and cited to support it.

  12. William S Berry said,

    July 10, 2019 @ 1:43 pm

    When browsing the menu of a small-town cafe, I once saw an entry for something that would be served with "Monetary Jack" cheese.

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