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#118061 - 12/22/03 03:33 PM fallow  
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This seems strange to me. I'm sure everyone else already knew it.

From merriam-webster online
Main Entry: 4fallow
Function: adjective
Date: 15th century
1 : left untilled or unsown after plowing
2 : DORMANT, INACTIVE -- used especially in the phrase to lie fallow <at this very moment there are probably important inventions lying fallow>

I'm familiar with this definition. Here's the one that surprised me:

Main Entry: 3fallow
Function: transitive verb
Date: 15th century
: to plow, harrow, and break up (land) without seeding to destroy weeds and conserve soil moisture

It seems not contradictory, but also inconsonant.

After one fallows the ground it is no longer fallow.
Comments anyone?

k



#118062 - 12/22/03 03:47 PM Re: fallow  
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>After one fallows the ground it is no longer fallow.

not so; after one fallows the ground, one by definition lets it lie fallow.

left... unsown after plowing

to plow... without seeding





#118063 - 12/22/03 03:52 PM Re: fallow  
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I guess I'm a little confused about the part of the definition that goes "left untilled or..."


k



#118064 - 12/22/03 04:03 PM Re: fallow  
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If we take this through the term till:

To prepare (land) for the raising of crops, as by plowing and harrowing;

it does seem a little inconsonant, but, if we go on in the defintion past that semicolon and see

cultivate

perhaps it's not so inconsonant after all. Leave out that critical step of planting the seed and you haven't done much of a job of cultivating.

http://www.bartleby.com/61/42/T0214200.html


#118065 - 12/22/03 04:16 PM Re: fallow  
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A couple hundred years ago, raising crops depleted plant nutrients. So a crop of grain might be followed by a year
of legumes which restored some of the nitrogen, but not enough to immediately plant grain. So a year of growin only grass might accumulate enough nitrogen from rains to permit
growing grain again. And part of the nutrients in the weeds would have been returned to the soil.


#118066 - 12/22/03 07:21 PM Re: fallow  
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jewish law required field to have a 'sabbath' just as man did, you could plant a field 6 years out of 7, on the seventh year, it had a 'sabbatical'-- and was given a rest.

sabbaticals were required for other things too...like cows, and goats, and sheep the were used for milk and for edible young.

cows need to 'freshen' to give milk --(ie, they have to bear a calf every 2 year or so)-- after 6 calfs-- a cow had to be 'given a rest'-- and allowed to go a year with out having a calf. (which is really almost impossible, since few cows would live to be 15 or 16 years old (2 years before first calving, and 6 calved (each takes 9 months, just like a human) and 2 years of giving milk...

but it might have been applied to sheep (sheep milk is also collected for cheese and consuption) and goats...

How long do sheep live in captivity Dr Bill (or Capfka?) i love how sheep look, but really know very little about them (compared to cows--and i only know a smidgeon about cows..)




#118067 - 12/22/03 07:57 PM Re: fallow  
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Dear of troy: I had five kids in 4H because my wife had not been allowed to have any animals when she was a kid. I got to pay for the feed and build things, and the shovelling out, but I didn't keep the records.


#118068 - 12/23/03 01:10 AM Re: fallow  
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k, AHD (via Gurunet) might help:
fal·low (făl'ō)

adj.
1. Plowed but left unseeded during a growing season: fallow farmland.
2. Characterized by inactivity: a fallow gold market.

n.
1. Land left unseeded during a growing season.
2. The act of plowing land and leaving it unseeded.
3. The condition or period of being unseeded.

tr.v., -lowed, -low·ing, -lows.
1. To plow (land) without seeding it afterward.
2. To plow and till (land), especially to eradicate or reduce weeds.
[Middle English falow, from Old English fealh, fallow land.]

Now--is that OE word fealh related to fealty?



#118069 - 12/23/03 01:32 AM Re: fallow  
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is that OE word fealh related to fealty?

Nope. Fealty is from Old French and, ultimately, Latin fides, faith.

http://www.bartleby.com/61/2/F0060200.html



#118070 - 12/23/03 12:53 PM Re: fallow  
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1. Plowed but left unseeded during a growing season: fallow farmland.


That makes more sense.

k



#118071 - 12/23/03 02:38 PM Re: fallow  
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This has been amusing to read.

On a slightly serious note, there are times our efforts to thrust forward and achieve go through fallow weeks and months. A shaman of sorts once told me that we should embrace those fallow periods as necessarily as we do those in which we achieve. With a big, warm smile on the shaman's face, she then gave me permission to rent a stack of the video's wow was asking about here a few weeks back. It was glorious going through that fallow period for almost two months, stacks of weedy video cases all about the living room.


#118072 - 12/24/03 12:14 AM Re: fallow  
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: to plow, harrow, and break up (land) without seeding to destroy weeds and conserve soil moisture

It just sank in, this was the theory that was responsible for the Great Dust Bowl in the Canadian Prairies. During the drought the farmers were advised to plow and harrow the land then leave it fallow to conserve the moisture. Instead the soil, without the root system of either weeds or crops to hold it, dried to dust and the most valuable topsoil simply blew away in the hot summer winds.


#118073 - 12/25/03 01:58 PM Re: fallow  
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i only know a smidgeon about cows.

Perhaps.

But you know an encyclopedgen about everything else, de Troy. [U never cease to amaze.]




#118074 - 12/25/03 02:30 PM Re: fallow  
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An effort at a bit of volksetymologie: "fallow" sounds a bit like "furlough" so I looke that up. Not related.

furlough

SYLLABICATION: fur·lough
PRONUNCIATION: fûrl
NOUN: 1a. A leave of absence or vacation, especially one granted to a member of the armed forces. b. A usually temporary layoff from work. c. A leave of absence from prison granted to a prisoner. 2. The papers or documents authorizing a leave: The soldiers had their furloughs in their breast pockets.
TRANSITIVE VERB: Inflected forms: fur·loughed, fur·lough·ing, fur·loughs
1. To grant a leave to. 2. To lay off (workers).
ETYMOLOGY: Alteration of vorloffe, furlogh, from Dutch verlof, from Middle Dutch. See leubh- in Appendix I.



#118075 - 12/26/03 12:27 AM Re: fallow  
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i love how sheep look

Reminds me of a poem [urging fallowness of mind a la Wordwind's shaman]:

What is this life if full of care
We have no time to stand and stare?
No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows

BTW, de Troy, when you say you love the way sheep "look", do you mean you love the way they look [as in "stare"], or you love the way they appear to you as you look at them ... or both?

As the poet says, "standing and staring" may be something we can learn from sheep and cows.

As an aside, when we "stare", are we not doing more than merely "looking"? Are we not in "awe"?

There is awe to be experienced, complexity and beauty, in the simplest and most mundane of things, wouldn't you say?

How often we miss it. [As another poet said, "one glimpse of it within the tavern caught, better than in the temple lost outright".]

Is it not revealing that even as we have less and less time in the blur of modern life to "stand and stare", we also have less poetry in our lives, and none in our schools?

#118076 - 12/26/03 01:39 AM Re: stand and stare  
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well said, g.



formerly known as etaoin...
#118077 - 12/26/03 01:06 PM Re: fallow  
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when you say you love the way sheep "look", do you mean you love the way they look [as in "stare"], or you love the way they appear to you as you look at them ... or both?

mostly its i like looking at them... there is a farm museum in queens, (it was a working farm until the early 1970's!--and dates from the early 1790's!) that keeps sheep in the orchard (which as a few wizzened old apple trees that don't produce much in the way of a harvest).

i can't say i visit the museum often (once a year at best) but just driving by, one can gaze upon sheep in a meadow...

somewhere in the past annals of this board, Capital Kiwi had a wonderfully funny mini essay, which should have been enough to remove any doubts about 'gentle, docile sheep'--and while i recognize the truth to his experiences (and about sheep in general) i prefer to view them (literaly and figuritively) as gentle, soft, fragrent, docile animals.

(maybe i have been knitting with wool too much of late!)


#118078 - 12/26/03 01:37 PM Re: fallow  
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gentle, soft, fragrent, docile animals

Yes, which is why we have the term "like sheep to slaughter".

There must be something tranquilizing about sheep, de Troy. People count sheep to fall asleep.

When we do something "sheepishly", we are reluctant to do it at all.

Is it perhaps that sheep are the terrestrial equivalent of fleecy white clouds?

Ah, but, did you have to mention "fragrant", de Troy?

Like most things revered in our imagination, they are best revered from afar ... in a well-ventilated meadow beneath a sky ascudder with clouds, pillow-soft, billowing, azure blue grazing, fleecy white clouds.







#118079 - 12/30/03 11:51 AM btw  
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thanks for the comments on this. i think i'm clear on fallowing now.

k



#118080 - 12/30/03 01:32 PM Fallow out  
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i think i'm clear on fallowing now

Maybe you just needed to fallow out.




#118081 - 12/30/03 04:23 PM Re: Fallow out  
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Hey, this isn't a baseball thread!


#118082 - 01/01/04 02:29 PM Re: Fallow out  
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Hey, this isn't a baseball thread!

True. For that you have to go to "Swine and Pearls".




#118083 - 01/02/04 03:41 PM Re: Fallow out  
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Great! I am not experiencing "writer's block." I am just in a fallow period. Time to read and get ready for inspiration !



#118084 - 01/03/04 01:10 PM Re: Fallow out  
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Great! I am not experiencing "writer's block." I am just in a fallow period.

Take your time.

The longer your fallow, the thicker your plot.
Never overcrop your thought.


#118085 - 01/03/04 01:28 PM Re: Fallow out  
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The longer your fallow, the thicker your plot.

If you never write again, it will be a masterpiece.


#118086 - 01/03/04 01:44 PM Re: Fallow out  
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if u never write again

Coming from you, especially, that is a special honor, Faldage. Thank you.


#118087 - 01/03/04 02:20 PM Re: Fallow out  
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your right, grapho, faldage, seemed to be damning with faint praise.. but lighten up.. i think he was just being witty (at wow's expense!) put Wow can zing faldage right good when she has a mind to!

it's just the kind of remark she needs to get her creative juices boiling!


#118088 - 01/03/04 02:29 PM Re: Fallow out  
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your right, grapho, faldage, seemed to be damning with faint praise

It's OK, de Troy. I won't let it go to my head.

Faldage was not damning with faint praise. But he may have been damning with fulsome praise .. an ingenious inducement to a swelled-head ["if you never write again"] to rest on feigned laurels.

My head is swelled with spirits [so soon after Christmas], de Troy, but not with praise.

In the spirit of the afterglow of the season, I will assume Faldage's motives were unsullied by insincerity.

[Even Malvo caught a break at Christmas-time, and none of my sniping, in any incarnation, has ever been lethal. ]

Sometimes, it is best to let sleeping flatteries lie, de Troy.

When the fight is fought and the dead are buried, there is more to win with honeyed words than with rapier wits.

I commend Faldage his wisdom, if not his sincerity.


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