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#34293 - 02/06/04 07:17 AM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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dxb Offline
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The split isn't really interesting on its own, but provides a slot for other words to interpose themselves.

Well, Mon Oncle, the concept sounds interesting. Can you give us an example, please?


#34294 - 02/06/04 03:11 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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the concept sounds interesting. Can you give us an example, please?

Sure. Here's a line from the Iliad xvi.670:

chrison t' ambrosiêi, peri d' ambrota heimata hesson

"anointed him with ambrosia and clothed him in immortal raiment"

peri ... hesson "put around, clothed" (periennumi 'to put round'). Sarpedon has just been killed and Apollo has taken him off the field for a funeral. The consensus seems to be that preverbs hadn't quite become as stuck to verbs in Homeric Greek as later. Though tmesis still happens in Classical Greek in Attic poetry and some plays for effect (as an archaism).

Bonus, here we get the word ambrosia and the adjective immortal (applied to clothes) in a single line. The verb hennumi 'to clothe' is related to Latin vestis 'garment, clothing' and Sanskrit vaste 'to clothe oneself'.


#34295 - 02/06/04 03:32 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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Dear jheem: could "divestrix" be equivalent of "ecdysiast"?


#34296 - 02/06/04 03:39 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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Works for me.


#34297 - 02/06/04 04:15 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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dxb Offline
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chrison t' ambrosiÍi, peri d' ambrota heimata hesson

"anointed him with ambrosia and clothed him in immortal raiment"


Thank you for that. I am a little the wiser! It is useful to have an example, even for a non-{Greek reader}.



#34298 - 02/06/04 04:34 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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Thank you for that.

You're welcome, dxb.

One thing I was thinking about on the way to work yesterday morning was how tmesis in English, abso-bloody-lutely is not based on morphemic boundaries as it is in Greek (and other languages). Absolutely breaks down as follows: ab-solute-ly. Actually, you could argue that in English absolute is not composed of two morphemes but one.


#34299 - 02/06/04 05:14 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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dxb Offline
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That kind of expression had occurred to me too. But as you point out structure has no influence at all. It is just done however the speaker thinks best and is purely for emphasis. Don't think it counts really!


#34300 - 02/06/04 05:25 PM Re: t flipping mesis: which is it?  
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Don't think it counts really!

Do you mean that abso-effing-lutely isn't tmesis? Me, I think that some classicist was overjoyed when s/he was asked what the word-within-a-word thing was called, and said: "tmesis". Whatever it's called, it's something that happens and it's quite productive. And, yes, it has less to do with morphology than with prosody.


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