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Apr 7, 2023This week’s theme
There’s a word for it
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Kjeragbolten boulder, Norway
Photo: Wouter de Bruijn
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Words about words
A.Word.A.Daywith Anu Garg
noun: The state of lying in the interval separating two conditions, qualities, extremes, etc.
From Old English betweonum (between), from be- (by) + tweon (two each). Earliest documented use: 1760.
The word was coined by the novelist Horace Walpole who also gave us serendipity. Both words were coined in letters to friends. Describing a house, he wrote, “The house is not Gothic, but of that betweenity, that intervened when Gothic declined and Palladian was creeping in.”
“Several years ago, very much between books, I was struggling to come to terms with the interplay between political culture and contemporary communications ... More recently -- and to stress the serendipity of betweenity -- I was idly looking out the window of a train in western Australia when the structure of a volume (bringing together previously published essays with new ones) magically presented itself.”
Robert Schmuhl; Filling the Fallow Period Between Writing Books; Chicago Tribune (Illinois); Aug 12, 2001.
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:You've got to have something to eat and a little love in your life before you can hold still for any damn body's sermon on how to behave. -Billie Holiday, jazz singer and songwriter (7 Apr 1915-1959)
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