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Sylvia Wright

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Sylvia Wright (January 21, 1917- Cambridge, Massachussets, May 9, 1981 [1]) was an American humorist and freelance writer best remembered for her book Get Away From Me With Those Christmas Gifts. [2][3][4]. She is also well known for inventing the term mondegreen. [5]


Sylvia Wright was born in 1917 as the daughter of Austin Tappan Wright. She studied at Bryn Mawr College and after graduation she became a freelance writer for various magazines, among them Harper's Bazaar. [6] It was in this magazine that she coined the neologism mondegreen in 1954.

In 1981 she died from cancer at her home in Cambridge, Massachussets, at the age of 64. [7] She was survived by her husband, Paul J. Mitarachi and had one son, John, with him. [8]


  1. http://www.gustner-wright-genealogy.com/tree/gp3895.htm
  2. "Sylvia Wright, a Writer And Harpers Ex-Editor". The New York Times. 1981-05-13. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-12-12.
  3. Cooke, Mary (7 February 1958). "Sylvia's a Serious Writer, But -- She Looks Sideways At The World". The Honolulu Advertiser. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  4. Black, Cobey (27 January 1958). "Born With a Silver Tongue in Her Cheek". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. p. 11. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  5. Sylvia Wright (1954). "The Death of Lady Mondegreen". Harper's Magazine. 209 (1254): 48–51. Drawings by Bernarda Bryson. Reprinted in: Sylvia Wright (1957). Get Away From Me With Those Christmas Gifts. McGraw Hill. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png Contains the essays "The Death of Lady Mondegreen" and "The Quest of Lady Mondegreen."
  6. https://www.nytimes.com/1981/05/13/obituaries/sylvia-wright-a-writer-and-harpers-ex-editor.html
  7. https://www.nytimes.com/1981/05/13/obituaries/sylvia-wright-a-writer-and-harpers-ex-editor.html
  8. https://www.nytimes.com/1981/05/13/obituaries/sylvia-wright-a-writer-and-harpers-ex-editor.html

Sylvia Wright[edit]

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