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  #1  
Old 29 January 2007, 07:21 PM
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DawnStorm DawnStorm is offline
 
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Mister Ed The word 'upset' was not used in sports until Man O' War's loss...

...to a horse of that name. I've been hearing this lately and it just sounds very ULish to me.
For the record, the race--Man O' War's only loss--was the Sanford Stakes in the summer of 1919 at Saratoga. Man O' War ran second to Upset and his jockey had to fight off allegations of race-fixing. However, Man O' War was always fractious at the start and when the tape* went up, he was not facing forward. Plus he had a horrible trip when his jock did get him straightened out.


*starting gates were not used until the 1930s.
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  #2  
Old 29 January 2007, 08:05 PM
lazerus the duck
 
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It seems to me you wouldn't get a horse called upset unless it was common parlance in the trade. If it was that common it is more than likely to have been used before.
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  #3  
Old 30 January 2007, 06:26 AM
Kid Kilowatt Kid Kilowatt is offline
 
 
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Count this as something that I had no idea was a UL. I've been preaching it as gospel. Though I can't find anything citing the use of "upset" prior to Man O War's loss, I found multiple sites saying that the story is false.
Oh well, one interesting fact ruined. Now is someone going to tell me that "forte" isn't really supposed to be pronounced "fort"? Cuz I've been telling people that for years, too.
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  #4  
Old 30 January 2007, 09:08 PM
bjohn13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kid Kilowatt View Post
Count this as something that I had no idea was a UL. I've been preaching it as gospel. Though I can't find anything citing the use of "upset" prior to Man O War's loss, I found multiple sites saying that the story is false.
Oh well, one interesting fact ruined. Now is someone going to tell me that "forte" isn't really supposed to be pronounced "fort"? Cuz I've been telling people that for years, too.
I think that all depends on whether or not there is a tilde at the end.

When talking about a person's strong point or the strongest part of a sword, either usage is acceptable. When used in musical terms, for-TAY is the preferred pronounciation.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/forte
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  #5  
Old 30 January 2007, 10:17 PM
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RealityChuck RealityChuck is offline
 
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Interesting -- the OED has the first cite for upset as a noun in a sporting contest as 1921 -- two years after the race. It was used as a tennis term, however, and had origins in Canada, so that is a bit inconclusive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OED
e. Sport (orig. Tennis). An unexpected defeat of the favourite in a game, etc.; a surprise result.

1921 Daily Colonist (Victoria, B.C.) 22 Oct. 10/1 Several upsets featured the play in the Canadian indoor tennis championships here yesterday.
It could have found its way into the tennis vernacular from the race, but one would assume it would show up in horse racing first.
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  #6  
Old 31 January 2007, 02:14 PM
matches
 
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Baseball wouldn't the first step

Be determining if a horse name upset ever beat man o' war? (or is it man of war?)

I have no real knowledge of horse racing so I don't know if there are records of what horses ran and who won for every race on the professional circuit going back nearly a century, but I would presume there is such a database as there is in most sports and that would confirm if this race ever occured.

If the race did occur, then this is a probable cause (though perhaps not the only cause) for this words use. Forexample, the term upset might have been used, (hence the naming of the horse) but it wasn't in common parlance until after the race.

If the race never occured, then it can't possibly be the cause of useage (though again the popularization of the myth could have lead to the popularization of the term).

If no database exists then probably the myth is the origin of the popularity of the term, and there is no way to verify the myth.

So umm...yeah...any one know where you'd find such a resource?
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  #7  
Old 31 January 2007, 02:31 PM
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DawnStorm DawnStorm is offline
 
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The race was run and won by Upset in 1919. There's no question of that.
What I'm questioning is the assumption that from then on out, the word 'upset' was used when the favorite unexpectedly lost.

Oh and it's Man O' War.
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  #8  
Old 31 January 2007, 02:32 PM
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Here is Upset's pedigree and racing history. (If the racing history doesn't show up, wave the cursor over Upset's name in the upper left corner.)

Upset was indeed the only horse to ever beat Man O' War. That doesn't prove the use of the name, though.

Last edited by glass papaya; 31 January 2007 at 02:38 PM. Reason: Left corner, not right corner.
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  #9  
Old 31 January 2007, 02:40 PM
DaGuyWitBluGlasses DaGuyWitBluGlasses is offline
 
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  • <1822 “The revolution and the UPSET of opinions . . . created a new order of . . . taste.”—‘Blackwell Magazine,’ XI. page 453> [[overturning or overthrow of ideas, plans, etc.]]

    <1877 "The programme for to-day at Monmouth Park indicates a victory for the favorite in each of the four events, but racing is so uncertain that there may be a startling UPSET."—'New York Times,'17 July, page 8> [[from the research of George Thompson, courtesy of Dave Wilton]]

    <1887 “It [[the horse race]] was such an UPSET as Mr.Kahn, the owner of Saxony, had not deemed possible, and he naturally felt very much annoyed by it.”—‘New York Times,’ 24 June, page 2>

    <1888 “The Suburban Renewal brought only three horses to the post, but it furnished an UPSET at that. With only Le Logos and Ordway against him, Dry Monopole was an odds on favorite . . . Dry Monopole fell back and lost the [[first ]] place to Le Logos.”—‘New York Times,’ 17 June, page 16>

    <1890 “With Tipstaff the hottest sort of favorite for the opening race, a three-quarter-mile dash the sport began with an UPSET, for Madstone, a 3 to 1 shot, landed the prize in good shape, beating the favorite home by a length.”—‘New York Times,’ 30 May, page 3>

    <1895 “Stevens was tiring Wren out rapidly, and had the [[tennis]] contest, which was postponed from Wednesday, not been shortened to two in three, the Jerseyman would have furnished an UPSET.” ‘Chicago Daily Tribune,’ 11 August, page 4>

    <1902 “. . . but nothing is more uncertain than form in football, and an UPSET may occur in any one of the four contests.”—‘New York Times,’ 24 November, page 11>

    <1903 “Horton was bred near Vŕllejo by the late ‘By Holly,’ and is seven years of age. There was an UPSET [[horse racing]] in the last race, when Hermencia outlasted Diderot and beat him.”—‘New York Times,’ 8 February, page 11>

    <1915 “Yeager scored an UPSET [[in tennis]] by eliminating Buynitsky, Hamilton Park, ranked as the favorite before the semifinals.”—‘Chicago Daily Tribune,’ 6 September, page 12>

    <1916 “Everything points to and Illinois [[football]] victory. but there is more than a possibility of an UPSET.”—‘Chicago Daily Tribune,’ 18 November, page 9>
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  #10  
Old 31 January 2007, 05:16 PM
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pob14 pob14 is offline
 
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Nice work, DaGuy - where did you get all of those quotes?
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  #11  
Old 01 February 2007, 02:42 AM
DaGuyWitBluGlasses DaGuyWitBluGlasses is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pob14 View Post
Nice work, DaGuy - where did you get all of those quotes?
I think it was some sort of text file (embedded within another site, so i couldn't get a URL for that actual source, either that or the URL redirected when entered manually) but googling one part turned up here:

www.wordwizard.com/newnav/ch_forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=18574
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  #12  
Old 01 February 2007, 09:07 PM
matches
 
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Icon202 It makes sense if you think about it

I mean Upset, etemologically would refer to something being turned up, or turned over, such as upseting the applecart. This notion of turning something on end would be easily applied to a sporting event where expectations were turned on end by an underdog.

Gee you know, when you actually spend a few minutes thinking about it, you wonder how these rumors ever get started.
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