Linguistics question

With regards to the common phrase “hard-core”.  I have always spelled it as before, using the word “core”, as I took it to mean that someone had a “hard core”, as in the core of their being was hardened.

Today I saw it spelled “hard corps”, using “corps” as in Marine Corps, or Corps of Cadets, which I took to mean a group of hardened individuals.

So I’m wondering which you guys use, or what version of “corps” you’ve associated the word with?


  1. I’m not an English major, but I did well in the subject. Hard-core is the correct way of referring to someones beliefs or ideology. A corps is a group of people who may or may not be hard-core in and of themselves.

  2. I vote for “hardcore”. “Hard corps” must just be a play on words.

  3. It’s hard–core. Someone must be unclear on the etymology, or maybe they were making a joke or something like that.

  4. I’ve always used “hard-core” and am fairly certain that’s the correct version, hyphen included.

    However, I would probably use “hard-corps” if I felt like being cute while referencing Uncle Sam’s Misguided Children. Since members of the USMC tend to dislike “cute” references, I’ll probably stick with “hard-core” when referencing them as well.

  5. “Hard corps” is a pun. Thus spaketh the American Heritage Dictionary.

  6. Hard-core, as in “hard-core” and “soft-core” porn. Isn’t that the most common usage of “hard-core,” anyway? If so, it should be the preferred approach.

    “Hard corps porn” sounds like a sub-genre of hard-core gay porn…

  7. What Mr. Alcibiades McZombie said. “Hard Corps” is a pun on “hard core”.

    PS: I’m a little shocked. I was sure that Firefox wouldn’t know how to spell “Alcibiades” and I’d have to learn it somethin’ new. It’s still clueless on “McZombie”, however.

  8. I am quite pleased that my gut instinct was correct and that “hard corps” is wrong and bad.

  9. Hai, d00d: u have 2 remember that getting a labtop does not make u a spalling, um, spelling x-pert.

    Reminder to the Kiddies: spell check is not an Eastern European Exorcist.

  10. I always thought hyphens could be dropped after a period of time, such as “e-mail” to “email”.

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