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#80547 - 09/13/02 12:18 PM not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
This is a repeat, but may interest newcomers:
Pen and Feather are varieties of the same word, the root being the Sanskrit pat, to fly. (We have the
Sanskrit pattra, a wing or instrument for flying; Latin, petna or, penna, pen; Greek, pteron; Teutonic,
phathra; Anglo-Saxon, fether; our “feather.”)
Analogous examples are TEAR and LARME, NAG and EQUUS, WIG and PERUKE, HEART and COEUR,
etc.


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#80548 - 09/13/02 04:25 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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From Brewer:
Prevarication The Latin word varico is to straddle, and prævanicor to go zigzag or crooked. The verb,
says Pliny, was first applied to men who ploughed crooked ridges, and afterwards to men who gave
crooked answers in the law courts, or deviated from the straight line of truth.


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#80549 - 09/13/02 05:20 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Not the way I learned it. From Brewer:
Prodigal Festus says the Romans called victims wholly consumed by fire prodigæ hostiæ (victims
prodigalised), and adds that those who waste their substance are therefore called prodigals. This derivation
can hardly be considered correct. Prodigal is pro-ago or prod-igo (to drive forth), and persons who had
spent all their patrimony were “driven forth” to be sold as slaves to their creditors.


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#80550 - 09/13/02 05:22 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Profane means literally before the temple (Latin, pro fanum). Those persons who came to the temple and
were not initiated were called profane by the Romans.

Profile (2 syl.) means shown by a thread. (Italian, profilo; Latin, filum, a thread.) A profile is an outline.
In sculpture or painting it means to give the contour or side-face.


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#80551 - 09/13/02 06:27 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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From Brewer:
Prussia means near Russia, the country bordering on Russia. In Neo-Latin, Borussia; in Slavonic,
Porussia; po in Slavonic signifying “near.”



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#80552 - 09/14/02 10:01 AM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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I never thought about derivation of word "quaint"
quaint
adj.
5ME cointe < OFr < L cognitus, known: see COGNITION6
1 orig., clever or skilled
2 [Now Rare] wrought with skill; ingenious
3 unusual or old-fashioned in a pleasing way
4 singular; unusual; curious
5 fanciful; whimsical
quaint$ly
adv.
quaint4ness
n.



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#80553 - 09/14/02 10:26 AM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Another surprise:
qualm
n.
5ME qualme < OE cwealm, death, disaster (akin to Ger qual, pain, Swed kvalm, nausea) < base of cwellan, to kill (see QUELL): all extant senses show melioration of the orig. meaning6
1 a sudden, brief feeling of sickness, faintness, or nausea
2 a sudden feeling of uneasiness or doubt; misgiving
3 a twinge of conscience; scruple
SYN.—qualm implies a painful feeling of uneasiness arising from a consciousness that one is or may be acting wrongly [he had qualms about having cheated on the test]; scruple implies doubt or hesitation arising from difficulty in deciding what is right, proper, just, etc. [to break a promise without scruple]; compunction implies a twinge of conscience for wrongdoing, now often for a slight offense [to have no compunctions about telling a white lie]; misgiving implies a disturbed state of mind resulting from a loss of confidence as to whether one is doing what is right [misgivings of conscience]

Now I shall have qualms about using the word.


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#80554 - 09/14/02 02:56 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Quarry Prey. This is a term in falconry. When a hawk struck the object of pursuit and clung to it, she was said to “bind;” but
when she flew off with it, she was said to “carry.” The “carry” or “quarry,” therefore, means the prey carried off by the hawk.
It is an error to derive this word from the Latin quaero (to seek).


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#80555 - 09/14/02 08:08 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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From Brewer:
Rama-Yana The history of Rama, the best great epic poem of ancient India, and worthy to be
ranked with the Iliad of Homer.

I wonder if "Yama" is the source of suffix of so many modern coinages ending in "iana".



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#80556 - 09/15/02 09:58 AM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Regale (2 syl.). To entertain like a king. (Latin, regalis, like a king, kingly.)



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#80557 - 09/15/02 10:04 AM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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From Brewer: Let the jocks keep their 'rimshot", be a little Latin learned:
Rem Acu You have hit the mark; you have hit the nail on the head. Rem acu tetigisti (Plautus). A phrase
in archery, meaning, You have hit the white, or the bull's-eye.


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#80558 - 09/15/02 11:57 AM Rimshot
AnnaStrophic Offline
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Loc: lower upstate New York
Dr Bill, interesting transference of meaning from the bull's-eye to the rim of a drum. Good research!


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#80559 - 09/15/02 03:48 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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From Brewer:
Ricochet [rikko-shay]. Anything repeated over and over again. The fabulous bird that had only one note
was called the ricochet; and the rebound on water termed ducks and drakes has the same name. Marshal
Vauban (1633-1707) invented a battery of rebound called the ricochet battery, the application of which
was ricochet firing.
ricochet
n.
Fr; used first in fable du ricochet (story in which the narrator constantly evades the hearers‘ questions) < ?6
1 the oblique rebound or skipping of a bullet, stone, etc. after striking a surface at an angle
2 a bullet, etc. that ricochets
vi.
3cheted# 73*ad#8 or 3chet#ted 73*et#id8, 3chet#ing 73*a#i%8 or 3chet#ting 73*et#i%8 5Fr ricocher < the n.6 to make a ricochet motion
—SYN SKIP1

I never heard of origin before. I knew it only as describing a bullet hitting a horizontal flat stone
and rebounding.



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#80560 - 09/15/02 06:48 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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From Brewer:
Runcible Spoon (A). A horn spoon with a bowl at each end, one the size of a table-spoon and the other
the size of a tea-spoon. There is a joint midway between the two bowls by which the bowls can be folded
over.
I thought this was a coinage of Edward Lear, in poem Owl and Pussycat. But if this were so, I would
think Brewer would have known it.


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#80561 - 09/16/02 12:10 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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More Brewer.
Sagan of Jerusalem in Dryden's Absalom and Achitophel, is designed for Dr. Compton, Bishop of
London; he was son of the Earl of Northampton, who fell in the royal cause at the battle of Hopton
Heath. The Jewish sagan was the vicar of the sovereign pontiff. According to tradition, Moses was
Aaron's sagan.

So, whose vicar was Carl Sagan?


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#80562 - 09/16/02 12:22 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
St. Elmo called by the French St. Elme. The electric light seen playing about the masts of ships in stormy
weather.
An electric current passing through air of sufficient voltage can ionize air molecules
and cause emission of light. Lightning is the extreme manifestation of this.


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#80563 - 09/16/02 12:28 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Salic Law The law so called is one chapter of the Salian code regarding succession to salic lands, which
was limited to heirs male to the exclusion of females, chiefly because certain military duties were
connected with the holding of those lands. In the fourteenth century females were excluded from the
throne of France by the application of the Salic law to the succession of the crown.


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#80564 - 09/16/02 12:32 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Salmon (Latin, salmo, to leap). The leaping fish.



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#80565 - 09/16/02 12:51 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Sandwich A piece of meat between two slices of bread; so called from the Earl of Sandwich (the noted
“Jemmy Twitcher”), who passed whole days in gambling, bidding the waiter bring him for refreshment a
piece of meat between two pieces of bread, which he ate without stopping from play. This contrivance
was not first hit upon by the earl in the reign of George III., as the Romans were very fond of
“sandwiches,” called by them offula

Any one care for an offula Sounds awful to me.. Not clear if singular or plural.Faldage?



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#80566 - 09/16/02 01:19 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Sandwichman (A). A perambulating advertisement displayer, with an advertisement board before and
behind.

I can remember seeing them in Boston many years ago.


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#80567 - 09/16/02 02:11 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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In the long history of conflict between English and French, possibly no Frenchman was more
admired by the British than: Bayard, Chevalier Sans Peur et Sans Reproche

Without Fear and Without Reproach


A French knight, Chevalier Bayard, was born in the latter half of the 15th century during the rise of the
powerful French nation state. By the age of 20, he became one of the youngest marshals of France and
would volunteer to fight for other affiliates during the brief times that France was not at war. Bayard
was admired by such diverse figures as Henry VIII of England, Gaston De Fiox (probably the finest
general of the day) and Leonardo Da Vinci, because he personified many of the knightly virtues, such as:

-Prowess - Bayard was always the first man in an attack. In a single combat he had no equal and most
enemy knights would simply ride around him in hope of fighting someone else.

-Courage - At the “Battle of the Spears” (30 June 1513), Bayard and approximately 15 men attempted to
fight the entire force of English and German knights (over 1000 men). While this may seem to have been
“bad headwork,” his courageous action enabled the main body of French troops to escape.

-Honor, Bearing - Aside from his habit of fighting duels with everyone who irritated him, Bayard was
renowned for his quiet, rather genteel attitude towards his people, his generosity to the poor, and his
mercy to beaten foes. His king, Frances I, referred to him as “My favorite DOG...he never barks, but
bites hard.”

-Loyalty - Bayard never deviated from his loyalties to king, church, friends, and country.

The shield and banner which make up part of the World Famous Pukin” Dogs’ crest were taken from the
shield that Bayard carried into battle so many years ago. It is only fitting that the officers and men of
the World Famous Pukin’ Dogs of Fighter Squadron 143, who emulate the qualities of the famous knight,
continue to carry his shield into battle.




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#80568 - 09/16/02 02:21 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Sash Window is a window that moves up and down in a groove. (French, chassis, a sash or groove.)



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#80569 - 09/16/02 02:23 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Satan in Hebrew, means enemy.

“To whom the Arch-enemy
(And hence in heaven called Satan).”
Milton: Paradise Lost, bk. i. 81, 82.


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#80570 - 09/16/02 02:36 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Scamp [qui exit ex campo ]. A deserter from the field; one who decamps without paying his debts. S
privative and camp


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#80571 - 09/16/02 03:18 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Score A reckoning; to make a reckoning; so called from the custom of marking off “runs” or “lengths,” in
games by the score feet.

Hard to see how this became the numbers that determine winner.


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#80572 - 09/16/02 04:16 PM Re: not unusual, but...
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Shanty A log-hut. (Irish, sean, old: tig, house.)



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#80573 - 09/17/02 08:49 AM Runcibility
Fiberbabe Offline
old hand

Registered: 01/12/01
Posts: 771
Loc: Portland, Oregon

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#80574 - 09/17/02 09:10 AM Re: Runcibility
wwh Offline
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Dear Fiberbabe: my compliments to Cecil. I am surprised that Brewer didn't mention Lear's
poem, since dates of the two seem to overlap. But Brewer seems to me to have higher
standing as scholar than Cecil.

From AHD"

runcible spoon


SYLLABICATION:
run·ci·ble spoon
PRONUNCIATION:
rns-bl
NOUN:
A three-pronged fork, such as a pickle fork, curved like a spoon and having a
cutting edge.
ETYMOLOGY:
Coined by Edward Lear, perhaps alteration of rounceval, big woman, large pea,
wart, monster, huge, from Roncevaux (Roncesvalles), site where giant bones
were found.


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#80575 - 09/17/02 09:14 AM Re: Runcibility
Faldage Offline
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Brewer seems to me to have higher standing as scholar than Cecil.

Ain't everbody's opinion. Dave Wilton seems to hold Brewer in perty low regard. Claims it's full of misinformation.


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#80576 - 09/17/02 09:38 AM Re: Runcibility
wwh Offline
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My estimation of Dave Wilton is not very high.


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#80577 - 09/17/02 09:45 AM Re: Runcibility
Faldage Offline
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estimation of Dave Wilton is not very high.

How does he compare with Cecil?


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#80578 - 09/17/02 03:33 PM Re: Runcibility
wwh Offline
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Dear Faldage: It is true that Brewer has a lot of garbage along with the good stuff.
He spent so many pages on ancient romances nobody reads any more, I can't see
how he managed to miss commenting on Edward Lear.
Dave Wilton just disappointed me but not having enough good stuff. I love the Bayeux
tapestry, but that's about all. Cecil Adams like Word-Detective is more smart-aleck
than informative. I do like www.takeourword.com - that's where I'm going now.


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#80579 - 09/18/02 09:05 AM Re: Rem acu rimshot
Faldage Offline
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Just out of curiosity, Brewer does not seem to make any connection between rem acu tetigisti and rimshot. Did I just not look far enough or is this your assumption, Dr. Bill?


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#80580 - 09/18/02 10:50 AM Re: Rem acu rimshot
wwh Offline
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If I remember correctly Brewer said "acu rem" meant you had hit the bullseye. I'll
go look again.

It took me a while, but here it is, from Brewer:

Rem Acu You have hit the mark; you have hit the nail on the head. Rem acu tetigisti (Plautus). A phrase in archery, meaning,
You have hit the white, or the bull's-eye.


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#80581 - 09/18/02 01:17 PM Re: Rem acu rimshot
Faldage Offline
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No connection with rimshot, then.


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#80582 - 09/18/02 01:31 PM Re: Rem acu rimshot
wwh Offline
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Dear Faldage: I never listen to games, doubled in spades to basketball games, but had
assumed "Rimshot" was manic-mouthed sportcaster word for a basket with ball never
even touching the rim. "Rem acu" seems quite similar to me, in my benghted cultural isolation.


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#80583 - 09/18/02 01:34 PM Re: Rem acu rimshot
wwh Offline
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Dear Faldage: I never listen to games, doubled in spades to basketball games, but had
assumed "Rimshot" was manic-mouthed sportcaster word for a basket with ball never
even touching the rim. "Rem acu" seems quite similar to me, in my benghted cultural isolation.

Edit: I searched, and can't believe what I got:

Rimshot [Pasties And A G-string ] When the drummer strikes the rim of a drum with a
drumstick, producing a loud, abrupt sound. It's often used to accentuate the weak beats offbeat
(The Folk File, Bill Markwick )


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#80584 - 09/18/02 01:43 PM Re: shoddy
wwh Offline
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Shoddy properly means the flue and fluff thrown off from cloth in the process of weaving. This flue, being mixed with new wool,
is woven into a cloth called shoddy- i.e. cloth made of the flue “shod” or thrown off. Shoddy is also made of old garments torn
up and re-spun. The term is used for any loose, sleazy cloth, and metaphorically for literature of an inferior character compiled
from other works. (Shed, provincial pret. “shod;” shoot, obsolete pret. shotten.)
Shoddy characters. Persons of tarnished reputation, like cloth made of shoddy or refuse wool.


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#80585 - 09/18/02 02:09 PM Re: silhoutte
wwh Offline
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Mentioned three times, but never defined. From Brewer:
Silhouette (3 syl.). A black profile, so called from Etienne de Silhouette, Contrôleur des Finances, 1757,
who made great savings in the public expenditure of France. Some say the black portraits were called
Silhouettes in ridicule; others assert that Silhouette devised this way of taking likenesses to save expense.



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#80586 - 09/18/02 02:14 PM Re: silly
wwh Offline
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Often used in AWADtalk, but I don't remember seeing its etymology. From Brewer:
Silly is the German selig (blessed), whence the infant Jesus is termed “the harmless silly babe,” and
sheep are called “silly,” meaning harmless or innocent. As the “holy” are easily taken in by wordly
ounning, the word came to signify “gullible,” “foolish,” (See Simplicity .)



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#80587 - 09/18/02 02:17 PM Re: Silurian
wwh Offline
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A name often seen in paleology. From Brewer:
Silurian Rocks A name given by Sir R. Murchison to what miners call gray-wacke, and Werner termed
transition rocks. Sir Roderick called them Silurian because it was in the region of the ancient Silures that
he investigated them.

Silures, people of ancient Britain inhabiting what today is southeastern Wales. A powerful and warlike tribe, they offered fierce resistance to the Roman force that invaded their territory in AD 48 but were finally conquered in 78, after the Romans established a legionary fortress at Isca, modern Caerleon. The chief town of the Silures was Romanized as Venta Silurum, the modern Caerwent, near the Severn estuary east of Newport.



"Silures," Microsoft(R) Encarta(R) 98 Encyclopedia. (c) 1993-1997 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Now I've got to find out who in hell the "Silures" were and from where.Back in a flash.


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#80588 - 09/18/02 04:23 PM Re: simplicity
wwh Offline
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From Brewer:
Simplicity is sine plica, without a fold; as duplicity is duplex plica, a double fold. Conduct “without a
fold” is straightforward, but thought without a fold is mere childishness. It is “tortuity of thought” that
constitutes philosophic wisdom, and “simplicity of thought” that prepares the mind for faith.


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#80589 - 09/18/02 04:28 PM Re: sincere
wwh Offline
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From Brewer: We had some posts challenging this derivation, but I am feeling lazy about citing them.
Sincere (2 syl.) properly means without wax (sine cera). The allusion is to the Roman practice of
concealing flaws in pottery with wax, or to honey from which all the wax has been extracted. (See
Trench: On the Study of Words, lect. vii. p. 322.)

This derivation was in my first year Latin book.


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#80590 - 09/18/02 04:31 PM Re: Indus
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Sindhu' The ancient name of the river Indus. (Sanskrit, syand, to flow.)



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#80591 - 09/18/02 04:46 PM Re:Sizar, sizer
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Sizar A poor scholar whose assize of food is given him. Sizars used to have what was left at the fellows'
table, because it was their duty at one time to wait on the fellows at dinner. Each fellow had his sizar.
(Cambridge University.)

I used to know a family by this name. They were all very bright.


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#80592 - 09/18/02 04:51 PM Re: skedaddle
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Skedaddle To run away, to be scattered in rout. The Scotch apply the word to the milk spilt over the pail
in carrying it. During the late American war, the New York papers said the Southern forces were
“skedaddled” by the Federals. (Saxon, scedan, to pour out; Chaldee, scheda; Greek, skeda'o, to seatter.)

No longer heard very often. Only in sense of running away to escape possible punishment.


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#80593 - 09/18/02 05:06 PM Re: slang
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Slang Slangs are the greaves with which the legs of convicts are fettered; hence convicts themselves; and
slang is the language of convicts.


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#80594 - 09/18/02 05:14 PM Re:sleep
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Sleep (Anglo-Saxon slaepen). Crabbe's etymology of doze under this word is exquisite:-

“Doze, a variation from the French dors and the Latin dormio (to sleep), which was anciently
dermio and comes from the Greek derma (a skin), because people lay on skins when they
slept ”!- Synonyms.


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#80595 - 09/19/02 08:59 AM Re: sincerely yours
Faldage Offline
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#80596 - 09/19/02 10:36 AM Re: sincerely yours
wwh Offline
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Dear /Faldage: It's time for Roth to wax you for a change. I am not sine cerumen in my ears.
but O try to be sincere. That MW site is ridiculous, feeling learned to drag in Spanish sin. I think
the oldtimers were correct.


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#80597 - 09/19/02 12:07 PM Re: sincerely yours
Faldage Offline
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http://www.bartleby.com/61/roots/IE223.html

http://www.word-detective.com/061202.html#sincere

You will be happy to know that Dave Wilton does not have sincere on his Big List.


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#80598 - 09/19/02 01:24 PM Re: sincerely yours
wwh Offline
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Dear Faldage: TOWFI also nixes without wax. But the 'sinceros" or something like that they
postulate, surely was "sine" combined very early with a root that might have meant "crap"
or something, not necessarily wax. I just don't think it is possible to trace the etymology
back far enough. And the idea of concealing defects in a piece of marble makes a lot of
sense, even though it may not have been origin. Folk etymology seldom makes that much sense.


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#80599 - 09/19/02 01:32 PM Re: sincerely yours
Faldage Offline
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Certainly the etymology of sincere doesn't rank with the correct pronunciation of nucular as a subject worthy of the concern of millions of conscientious word lovers.


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#80600 - 09/19/02 02:41 PM Re: sincerely yours
WhitmanO'Neill Offline
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Loc: Rio Grande, Cape May County, N...
Certainly the etymology of sincere doesn't rank with the correct pronunciation of nucular as a subject worthy of the concern of millions of conscientious word lovers.

Are you being sincere about this, Faldie? If so, what, then, is the nuculous of your argument?



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#80601 - 09/19/02 02:52 PM Re: nuculus of my argument
Faldage Offline
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Dubya said "nucular" what, six, eight times? He din't never said "I mean no wax when I say the we gone bomb the bahoovies outta Eye Rack."


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#80602 - 09/19/02 03:42 PM Re: sincerely yours
wwh Offline
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Dear Faldage: your AHD citation had an interesting word that has been mentioned before
a couple times, but never defined: hypocorism, hypocoristic

ypocoristic
adj.
< Gr hypokoristikos < hypokorizesthai, to call by endearing names < hypo3 (see HYPO3) + korizesthai, to pet < korc, girl < IE base *aer3, to grow > CEREAL6 of or being a pet name or a diminutive or term of endearment
hypocorism
n.



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#80603 - 09/19/02 04:30 PM Re: specie
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Specie, Species means simply what is visible. As things are distinguished by their visible forms, it has
come to mean kind or class. As drugs and condiments at one time formed the most important articles of
merchandise, they were called species - still retained in the French épices, and English spices. Again, as
bank-notes represent money, money itself is called specie, the thing represented.

A word whose meaning has changed:
specie
n.
abl. of L species: used in E from occurrence in the phrase (paid) in specie6 coin, as distinguished from paper money; also, coin made of precious, as distinguished from base, metal
in specie
1 in kind
2 in coin




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#80604 - 09/19/02 04:50 PM Re: philibeg
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Sporran (Gaelic). The heavy pouch worn in front of the philibeg of a Highlander's kilt.

I could find "philibeg" in many sites, but no clear definition. Some used it to mean "short kilt."
jmh, where are you when we need you?



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#80605 - 09/19/02 05:03 PM Re: stain
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Stain A contraction of distam. (Latin, dis-tingere, to discolour.)
This was news to me. My dictionary calls it an aphetic.


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#80606 - 09/19/02 05:27 PM Re: stirrup
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Stirrup (A). A rope to climb by. (Anglo-Saxon,. sti'g-ra'p, a climbing rope. The verb sti'g-an is to climb,
to mount.)
From what I have read, the stirrup is a surprisingly recent invention, without which knights could
never have used lance. It made cavalry far more effective.


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#80607 - 09/19/02 05:41 PM Re: style
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Style (1 syl.) is from the Latin stylus (an iron pencil for writing on waxen tablets, etc.). The characteristic
of a person's writing is called his style. Metaphorically it is applied to composition and speech. Good
writing is stylish, and, metaphorically, smartness of dress and deportment is so called.

“Style is the dress of thought, and a well-dressed thought, like a well-dressed man, appears to
great advantage.”- Chesterfield: Letter ccxl. p. 361.


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#80608 - 09/19/02 05:47 PM Re: sumptuary
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Sumptuary Laws Laws to limit the expenses of food and dress, or any luxury. The Romans had their
sumptuary laws (leges sumptuarii). Such laws have been enacted in many states at various times. Those
of England were all repealed by 1 James I., c. 25.



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#80609 - 09/19/02 05:53 PM Re:surgeon
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Surgeon is the Greek form of the Latin word manufacturer. The former is cheir-ergein (to work with
the hand), and the latter manu-facere (to do or make with the hand).



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#80610 - 09/20/02 08:13 AM Re: sumptuary
of troy Offline
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Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
and the creation of sumptuary laws lead to a bonfire of vanities!



_________________________
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#80611 - 09/20/02 04:02 PM Re: Tally-ho!
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Tally-ho! is the Norman hunting cry Taillis au! (To the coppice). The tally-ho was used when the stag
was viewed in full career making for the coppice. We now cry “Tally-ho!” when the fox breaks cover.
The French cry is “Taiaut!”


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#80612 - 09/20/02 04:04 PM Re: talipot
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Talpot or Talipot Tree. A gigantic palm. When the sheath of the flower bursts it makes a report like that
of a cannon.


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#80613 - 09/20/02 04:20 PM Re: talipot
of troy Offline
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Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
talipot is another one of those words related to the IE
pen(*) root... (you can reference Get a move on in Words section)

here is a picture of a flower talipot palm.. the yellow top is the flower structure.
http://www.chiangmainews.com/sight/talipot.phpIt is one of the largest cluster flowers in the world!

_________________________
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#80614 - 09/20/02 05:09 PM Re: tjree sheets in the wind
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Three Sheets in the Wind Unsteady from over-drinking, as a ship when its sheets are in the wind. The
sail of a ship is fastened at one of the bottom corners by a rope called a “tack;” the other corner is left
more or less free as the rope called a “sheet” is disposed; if quite free, the sheet is said to be “in the
wind,” and the sail flaps and flutters without restraint. If all the three sails were so loosened, the ship
would “reel and stagger like a drunken man.”

Tne best explanation of the common phrase I have ever seen. Remember, the "sheet" is not a sail,
it is a rope (a line).


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#80615 - 09/20/02 05:25 PM Re: Tigris
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Tigris [the Arrow]. So called from the rapidity of its current. Hiddekel is “The Dekel,” or Diglath, a
Semitic corruption of Tigra, Medo-Persic for arrow (Gen. ii. 14.)


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#80616 - 09/20/02 06:25 PM Re: tourney
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Tournament or Tournay. A tilt of knights; the chief art of the game being so to manoeuvre or turn your
horse as to avoid the adversary's blow. (French, tournoiement, verb, tournoyer.)

News to me.


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#80617 - 09/22/02 11:42 AM Re: tjree sheets in the wind
Wordwind Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
So there are three sails, right? And the sails aren't sheets, right? But there is a rope that's not called a rope, but a tack that secures the sail and there is another rope, not called a rope, but a sheet, that is adjusted. And if this adjusted sheet is maladjusted and the sail flaps about in the wind, the sheet is to the wind. Multiply that by three sheets (i.e., ropes) that are very loose, then you have three sheets to the wind and a drunk ship.

Got it!

I always thought sheets were sails. Learn something every day.


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#80618 - 09/22/02 11:53 AM Re: three sheets in the wind
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Dear WW: I too always though "sheets" meant the sails. I wonder if this is a case
of the part being named for the whole. "sceat" is old Germanic word for piece of cloth.
Sails had to have corners where lines were attached re-inforced by a piece of strong
fabric before the "sceatline" could be attached.


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#80619 - 09/22/02 01:18 PM Re: usher
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Usher means a porter. (Old French, muisher, a door; whence huissier, an usher; Latin, ostiarius.) One who
stands at the door to usher visitors into the presence. (Scotch, Wishart.)
And ostiarium is from ostium=door, from os, oris = mouth. Remember Ostium, port of Rome, was
at the mouth of the Tiber.


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#80620 - 09/22/02 01:40 PM Re: valkyrie
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
alkyriur or Valkyries. The twelve nymphs of Valhalla. They were mounted on swift horses, and held drawn
swords in their hands. In the mêléc of battle they selected those destined to death, and conducted them to
Valhalla, where they waited upon them, and served them with mead and ale in cups of horn called skulls. The
chief were Mista, Sangrida, and Hilda. Valkyriur means “chooser of the slain.”

I never knew this before. As mnemonic, "val = fall", "kyr"=kur=choose, select


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#80621 - 09/22/02 01:49 PM Re: venison
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Venison Anything taken in hunting or by the chase. Hence Jacob bids Esau to go and get venison such as he
loved (Gen. xxvii. 3), meaning the wild kid. The word is simply the Latin venatio (hunting), but is now restricted to the flesh of deer.


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#80622 - 09/22/02 03:15 PM Re: walnut
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Walnut [foreign nut ]. It comes from Persia, and is so called to distinguish it from those native to Europe, as
hazel, filbert, chestnut. (Anglo-Saxon, walh, foreign; hnutu, nut.)


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#80623 - 09/22/02 03:24 PM Re: wan
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Wan means thin. (Anglo-Saxon, wan, “deficient”; our wane, as the “waning moon.”) As wasting of the flesh is
generally accompanied with a grey pallor, the idea of leanness has yielded to that of the sickly hue which attends
it. (Verb wan-ian, to wane.)



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#80624 - 09/22/02 03:40 PM Re: warlock
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Warlock A wandering evil spirit; a wizard. (Anglo-Saxon, woer-loga, a deceiver, one who breaks his word. Satan
is called in Scripture “the father of lies,” the arch-warlock.)



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#80625 - 09/22/02 03:48 PM Re: Watling Street
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Watling Street A road extending east and west across South Britain. Beginning at Dover, it ran through
Canterbury to London, and thence to Cardigan. The word is a corruption of Vitellina strata, the paved road of
Vitellius, called by the Britons Guetalin. Poetically the “Milky Way” has been called the Watling Street of the
sky.

“Secunda via principalis dicitur Wateling-streate, tendens ab euro-austro in zephyrum
septentrionalem. Incipit ... a Dovaria ... usque Cardigan.”- Leland.


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#80626 - 09/22/02 03:57 PM Re: Welsh rabbit
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Welsh Rabbit Cheese melted and spread over buttered toast. The word rabbit is a corruption of rare-bit.

We had a lot of discussion of this, which concluded that above was a canard. Odd that Brewer
should have favored this definition.


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#80627 - 09/22/02 04:22 PM Re: Dick Whittington's Cat
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Brewer:
Whittington (See under Cat; alsoWittington .)
Riley in his Munimenta Gildhalla Londenensis (p. xviii.) says achat was used at the time for “trading” (i.e.
buying and selling), and that Whittington made his money by achat, called acat. We have the word in cater,
caterer.
As much error exists respecting Dick Whittington, the following account will be useful. He was born in
Gloucestershire, in the middle of the fourteenth century, and was the son of a knight of good property. He went
to London to learn how to become a merchant. His master was a relative, and took a great interest in the boy,
who subsequently married Alice, his master's daughter. He became very rich, and was four times Mayor of
London, but the first time was before the office was created Lord Mayor by Richard II. He died in 1423, during
his year of office, about sixty-three years of age.

I always thought the story of his getting rich by sending his cat to be sold in Algeria was stupid.



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#80628 - 09/22/02 04:25 PM Re: whittle
wwh Offline
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Brewer:
Whittle (A). A knife. (Anglo-Saxon kwytel, a knife; hwat, sharp or keen.)


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#80629 - 09/22/02 05:52 PM Re: Welsh rabbit
Wordwind Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
Don't you mix beer with the cheese?


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#80630 - 09/22/02 08:20 PM Re: Welsh rabbit
wwh Offline
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Posts: 13858
Dear WW: there are more recipes for Welsh rabbit than Carter has liver pills.
I think it was maverick said many recipes actually have rabbit in them UCLIU.


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#80631 - 09/23/02 06:55 AM Aw, nuts!
Fiberbabe Offline
old hand

Registered: 01/12/01
Posts: 771
Loc: Portland, Oregon
>Brewer:
Walnut [foreign nut ]. It comes from Persia, and is so called to distinguish it from those native to Europe, as hazel, filbert, chestnut. (Anglo-Saxon, walh, foreign; hnutu, nut.)


Hey wait a sec. I was raised to believe that hazelnut = filbert, coming from the biggest filbert-producing region in the US. Why the distinction here?


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#80632 - 09/23/02 07:08 AM Re: Aw, nuts!
Wordwind Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
There are hazelnuts indigenous to both Europe and North America--but the two nuts are different from each other..that is, if my memory is serving me well right now. I will look this up..

Same with walnuts--we have the American and the English walnut trees, both of which grow here in the USA. But I don't know whether the English walnut was introduced into the British Isles or was always native there. If always native there, then it was a foreign indigenous walnut tree--odd nomenclature when you think about it.


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#80633 - 10/07/02 01:27 PM Re: au pair
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
About ten years ago, there was a story about a British girl being found
guilty of causing death of child by shaking it. She was called an "au pair",
but definition or etymology was not given. I just found it:

au pair

NOUN:
A young foreigner who does domestic work for a family in exchange for room
and board and a chance to learn the family's language.
ETYMOLOGY:
French : au, at the + pair, equal.


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#80634 - 10/07/02 01:31 PM Re: sojourn
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
I just learned etymology of this word:
sojourn
vi.
ME sojournen < OFr sojorner < VL *subdiurnare < L sub3, under + diurnus, of a day: see JOURNEY6 to live somewhere temporarily, as on a visit; stay for a while
n.
a brief or temporary stay; visit
so4journ[er
n.



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#80635 - 10/08/02 05:45 AM Re: au pair
pgrew Offline
stranger

Registered: 05/20/00
Posts: 8
Loc: Milan, Italy
In other words she was supposed to come out "even," i.e. was not to be paid. "Au pair" is a fancy word for "unpaid," essentially.
- ph



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#80636 - 10/08/02 08:48 AM Re: au pair
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Unpaid, but supposed to be treated like one of the family, not like cheap hired help.
And if she were really treated like one of the family, she would get an allowance.
some recreation and clothing money.


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#80637 - 10/10/02 12:54 PM Re: light
wwh Offline
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Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858



From the derived Indo-European root LEUK, which meant light or
brightness, we have inherited at least 196 modern English words, including
the following:

From Old-Middle English - light, lea (a meadow or the
place where the sun shines)
From Latin - lumen, illuminate, lunar, lunatic, luster,
illustration, lucid, translucent F
From Greek - link (an ancient name for a torch), lynx (a
name given to the animal with a light shining in its eyes)



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#80638 - 10/11/02 05:07 AM Re: light
Wordwind Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
In reply to:

lynx (a
name given to the animal with a light shining in its eyes)


I'm reading a book about deserts in the US Southwest, and someone there observes that you can identify three specific animals in vehicular lights this way:

blue reflection from eyes = deer
red reflection from eyes = coyote
green reflection from eyes = mountain lion


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#80639 - 10/11/02 09:08 AM Re: light
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
There was a myth that lynxes could see through walls. So Gallileo belonged
to a society of scientists who called themselves the "Lincei" (? spelling) I'll
go look it up.
I did,and here's one of several URLs. required Acrobat Reader
http://libraries.ou.edu/depts/histscience/pdf/Lincei.pdf


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