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#52270 - 01/09/02 09:27 PM Re: draconian
stales Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/13/00
Posts: 866
Loc: Perth, Western Australia
Harry Potter fans may recall that "draco" is not only a character in the series, but also part of the Hogwarts' school motto.

Having looked it up when I read the books, I can report that draco is Latin for dragon. In this sense it is also the name for the dragon constellation. The Hogwarts motto translates to "don't tickle a sleeping dragon".

It seems to me therefore that "tough" punishments could be referred to as "dragon-like"????


#52271 - 01/10/02 06:07 AM Re: draconian hat tricks
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803
tsuwm had, in another thread, mentioned his original impression that the phrase hat trick had come from hockey fans throwing their hats in the rink upon a player's scoring three goals. He stood corrected.

#52272 - 01/10/02 10:31 AM Re: draconian
WhitmanO'Neill Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/13/01
Posts: 4189
Loc: Rio Grande, Cape May County, N...
The citizens adored Draco and upon entering an auditorium one day to attend a reception in his honour, the citizens of Athens showered him with their hats and cloaks as was their customary way to show
appreciation. By the time they dug him out from under the clothing, he had been smothered to death.

Thus the phrase smother with love?

#52273 - 01/10/02 11:54 AM Re: draconian
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
I found a couple sites that said that Draco's code mostly shocked the Athenians because they hadn't known how many laws passed by the nobles had been so severe. Yet there was also a quoted that said Draco had thought death for theft of an apple was fitting. I found a site with a lot of history about a very wide range of topics, well worth browsing. But the site about Draco gave a URL so long it took two lines, and I didn't have tsuwm's tool for shortening it handy. So I'll just give entrance URL in case somebody wants to browse.

#52274 - 01/10/02 12:46 PM Re: draconian
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10538
Loc: this too shall pass
> tsuwm's tool for shortening it

wasn't that max's tool? surely he must have it on his links page.

#52275 - 01/10/02 01:09 PM Re: draconian
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
You would know, tsuwm. My memory is quite porous. Forgive me, Max.

#52276 - 01/10/02 01:20 PM Special to Anu (and tsuwm)
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11613
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Thank you, Seattle Post-Intelligencer--it was the only place I could find today's cartoon on-line:

#52277 - 01/10/02 02:33 PM Re: Special to Anu (and tsuwm)
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
Dear Jackie: the cartoonist got it wrong. The "hat trick" is child putting cereal bowl on top of head.

#52278 - 01/10/02 03:11 PM Re: Special to Anu (and tsuwm)
Wordwind Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...

That's a great cartoon! Living on the periphery, as I do, and completely out of the sports arena, I had such a great, glorious feeling of INCLUSION in actually understanding a sports-related joke! Oh, joy!!!

Best regards,

#52279 - 01/10/02 03:25 PM Re: draconian
Akatsukami Offline

Registered: 12/17/01
Posts: 8
Draco was, as wwh's first post indicates, a codifier of Athenian customary law, not a writer of a new code (the confusion may be related to the insertion of a forged "Constitution of Draco" into the Athenian Constitution attributed to Aristotle). Interestingly, what little knowledge of archaic Greek customary law we have suggests that the punishment was not death, but outlawry (atimia), a formal abandonment of the criminal to the vengeance of the victim or the victim's kin.

Draco was probably not hated; we should note that politically, this was an age of rebellion against the established aristocratic order in Greece. The poets of the age praise turannoi (those who seized power, the origin of our word "tyrant") for bringing eunomia (etymologically "good order", but used to merely "order") and dike ("justice"). Interestingly, the words that were used in opposite to "justice" meant "caprice"; the middle class (such as it was) apparently preferred a defined role, how limited and harsh, to being the playthings of the nobility.

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