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#85497 - 11/03/02 11:06 AM sphinx
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
News to me that it comes from Greek verb meaning to strangle. The circular muscle so
socially indispensible at external lower termination of intestinal tract is called a
sphincter. So the Sphinx was said to kill victims by strangulation.
"sphinx - c.1421, from L. Sphinx, from Gk. Sphinx, lit." the
strangler," a back-formation from sphingein "to squeeze,
bind." Monster, having a lion's (winged) body and a
woman's head, that waylaid travellers around Thebes and
devoured those who could not answer its questions; slain by
Oedipus. The proper plural would be sphinges. "

#85498 - 11/03/02 06:24 PM Re: sphinx
Wordwind Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
I'm glad this didn't come up when I taught Oedipus Rex.

#85499 - 01/31/04 03:47 PM Re: sphinx
ElizaD Offline

Registered: 01/27/04
Posts: 11
Loc: North East England
SOED (Shorter Oxford English Dictionary) says the plural is either sphinges or sphinxes. There's a family of butterflies with the name sphinx - "so called from the attitude frequently assumed by the caterpillar". Attitude? A caterpillar with attitude? Must have been reading Alice.

#85500 - 01/31/04 04:35 PM Re: sphinx
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
I used to see sphinx moths near my beehives. At times my first thought was that they were hummingbirds. Here's a URL
with a lot of pictures. My vision isn't good enough to see
if there are moths in the pictures.Scroll down 1 inch.

#85501 - 02/02/04 08:41 AM Re: sphinx
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803
A caterpillar with attitude?

A company I used to work for had a division that made equipment that sensed and controlled the posititioning of orbital satellites. Their motto was 'Attitude is Everything!'

#85502 - 02/02/04 08:45 AM Re: sphinx
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Dear Faldage: I hope you had the Right Attitude.

#85503 - 02/04/04 02:54 AM Re: sphinx
Bingley Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/09/00
Posts: 3065
Loc: Jakarta

#85504 - 02/04/04 10:08 AM Re: sphinx
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Thanks, Bingley. I don't understand how the link got
mangled. Thanks for correcting it.


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