Wordsmith.org: the magic of words

Wordsmith Talk

About Us | What's New | Search | Site Map | Contact Us  

Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#175892 - 04/16/08 01:11 AM Spring fling
Zed Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/27/02
Posts: 2154
Loc: British Columbia, Canada
I rode my bike to work this morning and heard the oddest sound. Several blocks later I found a hairy woodpecker showing off for the girls. He would drum a little then stop to look around and see if anyone noticed. I am sure that he wasn't just hungry as he was drumming, not on a tree but on the aluminum flashing that capped a telephone pole. He had chosen a spot where the metal pulled away from the wood to form a hollow drum. No wonder the sound carried so far.
Clever little birdbrain.

Top
#175894 - 04/16/08 03:17 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: Zed]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
While Vancouver birds still try to seduce mates I hear the soft screaming of young birds in spite of the prolongued cold. Most every morning I feed the blackbird couple some wholewheat bread and peanutbutter for there own good while they come dig for worms for the young. By now they accept that I stand watch to keep the overpowering wood pigeons off.
They understand the meaning of my standing there. I enjoy their getting so near. That's my spring fling.

Top
#175906 - 04/16/08 10:38 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: BranShea]
Maven Offline
member

Registered: 04/27/07
Posts: 120
Loc: California
Here, the mud swallows are getting frisky. One small flock picked the overhang above the door into where I work. Over the weekend, they started building nests, only to discover on Monday morning that there is way too much activity there. The area is now littered with little dabs of mud, and every now and then a very angry swallow flies by and criticizes some unsuspecting person.
_________________________
tempus edax rerum

Top
#176021 - 04/18/08 07:49 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: Maven]
of troy Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
on sunday, i saw a pair of pigeons "getting it on" in a multi layer parking lot.. they ignored the passers by.. (but it was a quicky. pigeons are just flying rats, and remimded me of a whore and her john. (i guess i am not the having the happiest of springs.)
_________________________
my other obsession

Top
#176023 - 04/18/08 09:27 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: of troy]
twosleepy Offline
old hand

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 876
Loc: western NY
Every spring, out my window at work, I see the squirrels chasing each other like lunatics, up and down the trees, round and round, crosswise, all day long.... :0)

Top
#176062 - 04/19/08 04:17 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: twosleepy]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Allright, better ask it here then. Another spring fling thing is putting flower seeds in pots that will later on fill the outgrown empty spots in the garden. But as it is still too cold I have to wait. Since a few days I stare at two the little bags with pretty orange flowers saying:
Tropeolum majus nanus. I know what tropeolum means but majus nanum , found as addition to many plant names , will not come out of the online Latin translater.
I saw you handling some Latin in the other thread, twosleepy.
Do you know the magic words? majus nanus jajum?

Top
#176064 - 04/19/08 05:52 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: BranShea]
The Pook Offline
old hand

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1067
Loc: Tasmania
majus would mean larger wouldn't it?

do you plant bulbs too? you should grow tulips and other bulbs shouldn't you? then you wouldn't have to wait so long to plant them.

Top
#176067 - 04/19/08 08:00 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: BranShea]
twosleepy Offline
old hand

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 876
Loc: western NY
Okay, the heat is on! Your seeds are for nasturtiums, yes? And the flowers are small? The "nanus" portion indicates dwarf or small, (in Spanish dwarf is "enano") which is probably (I didn't check) the same origin of "nanites" (from "nanomachines"), a word familiar to all those scifi buffs out there as tiny "robots", if you will, that perform functions alone or in concert with other nanites. A SciFi show called "Jake" was based on the premise of a man who was accidentally "infected" by some nanites through blood exposure. Anyhoo... the "majus" portion comes out of the translator as "magic", interestingly enough, probably where we get "mage" and "magus", and you did mention magic in your post! Not sure where this somes in with the flowers, though! The only thing I could find is that many of the "nanus majus" are snapdragons, and dragons are magical creatures. It's a stretch, but it could be. I doubt it's related to being big, as that would make an oxymoron with "nanus". That's the best I can come up with. If you hold on a bit, zmjezhd may show up and clear it all up for us! :0)

Top
#176080 - 04/20/08 04:02 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: twosleepy]
The Pook Offline
old hand

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1067
Loc: Tasmania
I'm no Latin scholar, but majus is definitely Latin for greater. And unless I'm mistaken nanus means dwarf. So it's almost an oxymoron, but it appears to be the botanical name for the larger variety of the dwarf Tropeolum.

Majus doesn't mean magic, that comes from the Greek magos.


Edited by The Pook (04/20/08 04:08 AM)

Top
#176083 - 04/20/08 09:43 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: The Pook]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Yes, majus nanus when it means "large dwarfish" makes no sense.
I hope zmjehzd will stoop down the great divide to let his light shine on this. I got him a bonus word in "jajum", which is a false Latin word but it is a real word and I'm sure 'he'll know what it means.

As for tulips , I always have them. In pots and in the ground.
My avatar shows the leaves when the flowers are gone.

twosleepy
 Quote:
Your seeds are for nasturtiums, yes? And the flowers are small?

Nasturtium yes and I think small refers to them staying low by the ground. I used to have those giant creepers that went all over the place.


Edited by BranShea (04/20/08 11:03 AM)

Top
#176089 - 04/20/08 10:29 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: BranShea]
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803
And while nanus maybe related to the nano- of nanomachines it isn't derived from it. Nano- is the SI prefix meaning 10 to the minus 9. It comes from the Greek nanos, 'little old man, dwarf,' which sounds like the Latin came straight from the Greek. That would make nanus and nano- second cousins thrice removed or something like that.

Top
#176094 - 04/20/08 11:22 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: BranShea]
zmjezhd Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/13/05
Posts: 3290
Loc: R'lyeh
Tropeolum majus nanus

Well, as I understand binomial nomenclature, the Tropaeolum part is the genus, and the species is majus, with a sub-species word thrown in. Tropaeolum majus would mean 'greater tropaeolum' in Latin. The word magnus, -a, -um 'great' is irregular in forming its comparative: major, majus. (In the first citation form the -us ending is for the masculine, the -a for the feminine, and the -um neuter; in the second one, because it belongs to a different declension the ending -or is for masculine and feminine and -us for neuter.) The nanus does mean 'dwarf'. But it isn't an adjective and it isn't neuter like the preceding two words. The word tropaeum in Latin means 'trophy, monument to victory' and is a loan from Greek τροπαιον (tropaion) which is related to τροπη (tropē) 'turning'. The ending -olum may be a diminutive suffix: 'little trophy'.
_________________________
Ceci n'est pas un seing.

Top
#176095 - 04/20/08 11:28 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: Faldage]
zmjezhd Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/13/05
Posts: 3290
Loc: R'lyeh
Latin gnanus 'dwarf' may be the native word and its variant nanus may have come from or been influenced by the Greek νανος (nanos).

English mage and magic come via Latin and Greek from Old Persian maguš which may have been a caste or an ethnonym. In Latin and Greek, magus meant 'sorcerer'.
_________________________
Ceci n'est pas un seing.

Top
#176104 - 04/20/08 01:48 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: zmjezhd]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Yes thanks, that makes sense. So twosleepy was on the right track with her 'magic.' It means they are supposed to show a magical amount of magical flowers. And they are low growing.
Good!

Top
#176107 - 04/20/08 05:28 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: The Pook]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Some garden tulips for AnnaStrophic, twosleepy and Pook.
tulips in pot

Top
#176108 - 04/20/08 07:36 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: zmjezhd]
The Pook Offline
old hand

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1067
Loc: Tasmania
 Originally Posted By: zmjezhd
Latin gnanus 'dwarf' may be the native word and its variant nanus may have come from or been influenced by the Greek νανος (nanos).

English mage and magic come via Latin and Greek from Old Persian maguš which may have been a caste or an ethnonym. In Latin and Greek, magus meant 'sorcerer'.


It probably was a caste or office. It seems first of all to have applied to a kind of court astrologer/diviner cum wiseman cum counsellor. In the biblical book, Daniel was a magus in the court of the Medo-Persians. In the New Testament the word (in the plural magoi) is applied to the 'wisemen' of the Infancy narrative who come from 'the East' - perhaps suggesting they were connected with the court of Parthia as advisers to the king. It is also used of Simon the Samaritan Sorceror in Acts chapter 8 and Elymas bar-Jesus the Jewish resident court magician of the Roman governor (proconsul) of Cyprus, Sergius Paulus, who was blinded by the Apostle Paul in a power encounter in Acts chapter 13.

As can be seen in at least two or possibly three of the examples above, a common denominator in the ancient category of magus seems to be some connection with civil rule. It would be a reasonable deduction to make that the 'magician' started out as a rather more serious version of the medieval court jester (a word which may come from similar roots?). The magus was a character of great wisdom and influence, who used both scientific or natural means acquired through his great learning, and supernatural means to provide sage advice and perhaps predictions of events to secular rulers.

These days though, he generally contents himself with party tricks.


Edited by The Pook (04/20/08 07:39 PM)

Top
#176112 - 04/20/08 08:51 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: BranShea]
twosleepy Offline
old hand

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 876
Loc: western NY
Such lovely flowers, Bran! Thanks! :0)

Top
#176122 - 04/21/08 03:06 AM Re: Spring fling [Re: twosleepy]
Zed Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/27/02
Posts: 2154
Loc: British Columbia, Canada
Sigh! I bought some plants for my window boxes on Friday but thank heavens I didn't get around to planting, it SNOWED on Friday night. Over 2 inches. Cherry trees in full bloom above a white lawn and I didn't have my camera.

Top
#176141 - 04/21/08 02:33 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: Zed]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Hmm!Nice , cherry blossom and icecream!

Top
#176432 - 04/27/08 05:07 PM Re: Spring fling [Re: Zed]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5282
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
So at last an evening to sit outside and make the first little fire.

" And in the Fire of Spring,
The Wintergarment of Repentence fling :"

Rubáyát of Omar Khayyám

fire from scratch

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Moderator:  Jackie 
Forum Stats
8759 Members
16 Forums
13812 Topics
215898 Posts

Max Online: 3341 @ 12/09/11 02:15 PM
Newest Members
sstone, BikerVet, MSusanElizabeth, Sumac, cocozh421
8759 Registered Users
Who's Online
0 registered (), 33 Guests and 4 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Top Posters (30 Days)
wofahulicodoc 113
LukeJavan8 101
endymion6 100
A C Bowden 23
Tromboniator 13
wsieber 1
Storymom 1
tsuwm 1
Jackie 1
Top Posters
wwh 13858
Faldage 13803
Jackie 11610
tsuwm 10524
Buffalo Shrdlu 7210
LukeJavan8 6704
AnnaStrophic 6511
Wordwind 6296
of troy 5400
BranShea 5282

Disclaimer: Wordsmith.org is not responsible for views expressed on this site. Use of this forum is at your own risk and liability - you agree to hold Wordsmith.org and its associates harmless as a condition of using it.

Home | Today's Word | Yesterday's Word | Subscribe | FAQ | Archives | Search | Feedback
Wordsmith Talk | Wordsmith Chat

© 2014 Wordsmith