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QUOTE (GoingUnderground @ 8 Nov 2008, 21:10) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>... or can give the reason why the Met locos are called Camel Backs and not Steeple Cabs?
The authentic answer is because that was the name applied by the people at the time. When a distinctive form happens to arise in several different places in a short time period, and especially before the age of near instant and easy communication, a variety of descriptive names will be applied. That some of them may be confused with other descriptive names applied to something significantly different is just one of those things. If it matters enough to clarity of communication within a linguistic group then usually the names do eventually shake out to just one or two forms making clear the object being described without too much confusion. The early railways in the UK had both break and brake vans, (sometimes in the same sentence). And they were the same thing, named by their function at a time when the spelling of the device that stopped a vehicle hadn't achieved an accepted orthography...

And look at 'Jools' wanting to apply 'Crocodile'. In railway parlance that applies equally to a Swiss articulated rod coupled electric loco, and a bogie well wagon built by the GWR. Use that term without any additional qualification of the context about the English railway and it means a type of wagon to most of us.

Rule 1: There are no rules...
 
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