|About Us | What's New | Search | Site Map | Contact Us|
You are not logged in. [Log In] Wordsmith.org » Forums » General Topics » Miscellany » What does this quote mean? Register User Forum List Calendar Active Topics Search FAQ
#213930 - 01/11/14 10:40 AM What does this quote mean?
OBSOLETE, adj. No longer used by the timid. Said chiefly of words. A word which some lexicographer has marked obsolete is ever thereafter an object of dread and loathing to the fool writer, but if it is a good word and has no exact modern equivalent equally good, it is good enough for the good writer. Indeed, a writer's attitude toward "obsolete" words is as true a measure of his literary ability as anything except the character of his work. A dictionary of obsolete and obsolescent words would not only be singularly rich in strong and sweet parts of speech; it would add large possessions to the vocabulary of every competent writer who might not happen to be a competent reader.
What do you think it means?
This is from the Devil's dictionary.
Especially the last sentence.
#213931 - 01/11/14 11:20 AM Re: What does this quote mean? [Re: momi1234]
Loc: this too shall pass
you must have a predilection for irony.
here is a bit of good advice that I found:
You should use obsolete or archaic words when:
1 No other word will serve (as in a scholarly piece about history or linguistics, for example).
2 You want to confuse your audience or make them laugh.
3 You want to sound pretentious or pedantic.
Note: this is hard advice for me to pass on, as I have an entire web site based on obscure, abstruse and/or recondite words, which often run to obsolete and archaic extremes.
#213935 - 01/11/14 06:29 PM Re: What does this quote mean? [Re: tsuwm]
Ambrose Bierce, author of The Devil's Dictionary, was noted for his acerbic definitions. Another example:Originally Posted By: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's DictionaryConservative
(n.) A statesman who is enamoured of existing evils, as distinguished from the Liberal, who wishes to replace them with others.
#213969 - 01/15/14 04:16 AM Re: What does this quote mean? [Re: momi1234]
Forum Stats 8910 Members
Max Online: 3341 @ 12/09/11 02:15 PM
Newest Members folatre, Rockyhud220, L82cannon, tien170164, ramulusri
8910 Registered Users
Who's Online 1 registered (1 invisible), 233 Guests and 3 Spiders online. Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Top Posters (30 Days)
wofahulicodoc 83 endymion6 83 LukeJavan8 67 May 28 BranShea 3 Markubus5 2 Tromboniator 1 peter_in_boston 1 Hansje1980 1
wwh 13858 Faldage 13803 Jackie 11613 tsuwm 10537 LukeJavan8 8054 Buffalo Shrdlu 7210 AnnaStrophic 6511 wofahulicodoc 6430 Wordwind 6296 of troy 5400
Board Rules · Mark all read Contact Us · Wordsmith.org · Top
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
© 1994-2016 Wordsmith