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#159005 04/22/06 05:12 PM
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I am reading P.D. James “Death in Holy Orders” (New York: Ballantine, 2001), which is excellent. In it, she uses the adjective "tenebrous" to describe a chapel which is poorly lit. Having only recently made reference to the Holy Week liturgy of Tenebrae on this board, I was comfy with the baroness' use of the term.

#159006 04/22/06 11:14 PM
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I've been told she's really good. Is she?

#159007 04/22/06 11:38 PM
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F.S., in French, tenebrous (ténébreux) has also come to describe situations that are cryptic, difficult to read or understand. You are figuratively "in the dark"

#159008 04/23/06 01:49 AM
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Jackie asks: "I've been told she's really good. Is she?"

I am a poor judge of this (as well as a variety of other things), as I am not a frequent reader of mysteries. This one was recommended to me because it is set in an old Church of England seminary on a remote coast and involves all sorts of issues of church politics. I am enjoying it thoroughly. P.D. James could have written, methinks, in any genre and done well.

BelMarduk amplifies: "in French, tenebrous (ténébreux) has also come to describe situations that are cryptic, difficult to read or understand. You are figuratively 'in the dark'."

The way in which the Baroness uses this adjective carries both the physical sense of darkness and the sense that the person in the chapel is, in terms of the plot, "in the dark." Clever author!

Fun word. I now need to figure out ten ways to use it in conversation, a spot for it in a sermon (maybe not until next Holy Week) and at least one written opinion into which it may be inserted.

#159009 04/23/06 11:15 AM
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Ten ways!!

I usually keep the new words I like in my back pocket until I see the perfect situation to use them. I've never gone out and tried to specifically create opportunities to use them.

Hmmm. It must be easier to remember them after that.


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