Oh, those foreign phrases

If I were ever a contestant on “Jeopardy!,” you would probably never hear me say, “I’ll take ‘Foreign Words and Phrases’ for $1600, Alex.” Like a lot of English speakers and writers, I often mess up on words from other languages.

I just ran across this in a piece of copy: objects d’art. I thought it was spelled objets d’art, but, of course, I wasn’t sure. So I looked it up, something professional copy editors do many times a day. Indeed, it’s objets d’art. It’s easy to let this slip by, I’d say. The Columbia Guide to Standard American English has an entry about objet d’art.

This article was originally posted by the Raleigh News & Observer, a subsidiary of The McClatchy Co.; is posted here to provide continuity; and is copyright © 2011 The News & Observer Publishing Company, which reserves the right to remove this post.