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Passions in Poetry

Tongue Tied (How far can language be twisted?)

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Stephanos
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0 posted 01-14-2009 11:06 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

The thread with Essorant brought this to mind ...

I'm always amazed at the suppleness of language, and how it has evolved through time and cultures ... how slang and even playful onomatopoeia has worked its way into the mainstay, even into formal and established language.  

Yet two stabilizing things seem clear to me:  1) Language is pragmatically binding (though organic, still breakable), and 2) it is democratic in a sense, resistant to many a private permutation.  So my question is, how far is too far in stretching language, and how can we tell?

Grbixkjsh labeuethidol,




Stephen
rwood
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1 posted 01-15-2009 05:53 PM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

I'll go back to Old English if you will.

Care for any "Grímnir's lip-streams?"

We've come a long way, StephEn, or have we?
Stephanos
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2 posted 01-15-2009 07:47 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Grimner's lip streams?  

I'm clueless.
Essorant
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3 posted 01-15-2009 08:18 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

She means Odin's mead
rwood
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4 posted 01-15-2009 08:28 PM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

It's a kenning for "poetry."

The quote is from an Old Norse poem, Thorsdrapa, Lay of Thor.

Kennings were prominent figures of speech in Old English and Old Norse. Some love them, some hate them. I think they're awesome.

And Yes, Ess! You never disappoint me, my Beowulf friend. It also stands for the drink of Odin.
rwood
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5 posted 01-16-2009 12:52 PM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

P.S.

Perhaps we can borrow a bit from Pink Floyd's-- Learning to Fly.

"Into the distance, a ribbon of black
Stretched to the point of no turning back"

"Tongue-tied and twisted Just an earth-bound misfit, I"
Essorant
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6 posted 01-16-2009 08:15 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

What about the word muscle from Latin musculus "little mouse" (mus "mouse" + culus, a diminutive suffix).  We ought to wonder about parts of our body being "little mice", not only that but mutated mice, sometimes biceps "twoheaded" or triceps "threeheaded".  
Stephanos
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7 posted 01-17-2009 12:08 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

1533, from L. musculus "a muscle," lit. "little mouse," dim. of mus "mouse" (see mouse). So called because the shape and movement of some muscles (notably biceps) were thought to resemble mice.

(From the Online Etymological Dictionary)
Essorant
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8 posted 01-18-2009 01:13 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

And did you ever wonder why people have so much difficulty understanding calculus "a little stone" (from calx "stone (usually limestone)" + -culus, diminutive suffix)?
Stephanos
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9 posted 01-18-2009 07:35 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Maybe there is a creative legitimacy to creating new words by analogy (if they catch on, and don't die miserably in someone's own mouth, head, or notebook).  But I doubt there's any legitimacy in altering established words, not by analogy, but by sheer gutting.

Stephen
Essorant
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10 posted 01-19-2009 12:02 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Believe it or not many male swordsmen also have a vagina. [scabbard, sheath]
Stephanos
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11 posted 01-19-2009 05:58 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ess, are you trying to get us booted to mature?  


Stephen
Essorant
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12 posted 01-20-2009 01:10 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Sorry, Stephanos.  No maturity intended
Essorant
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13 posted 01-20-2009 02:06 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

While the word is flying around like a bird today:

Inaugurate, from inauguratus passive participle of inaugurare to take omens from the flight of birds, to act as an augur, to hallow by augury. (in "in" + augur "(from avi-"bird" + gur "talk/sound" = "birdteller/reader") + are, present active infinitive ending.


Essorant
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14 posted 01-21-2009 01:45 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Just like every rose, every human has a spine (from Latin spina "thorn").
Essorant
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15 posted 01-21-2009 01:55 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

One might get a bit cold, if he doesn't keep his focus [fireplace].
oceanvu2
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16 posted 01-22-2009 12:13 AM       View Profile for oceanvu2   Email oceanvu2   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for oceanvu2

Stephen, RE: "So my question is, how far is too far in stretching language, and how can we tell?"

Ya uses yor crap detector and does your best.

Language may be God's blessing or curse, but it sure messes with a lot of minds.

Best, Jimmy
Essorant
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17 posted 01-22-2009 02:25 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

"Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth." Genesis 11:9
Ron
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18 posted 01-22-2009 07:54 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
... because the LORD did there confound the language

Right, Essorant. And later He would walk on water.

When you can do the latter, maybe we'll let you get away with doing the former.  
rwood
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19 posted 01-22-2009 08:06 AM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

LOL.

Sorry.

But "LOL" is also a great example of newfangled language.
Essorant
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20 posted 01-22-2009 11:25 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Ron,


But give it up with the nonsense of me trying to take over the word and redefine it.  Personally, I have no more patience for it from you or Stephanos.  A man arguing about something, however ridiculous you think his statement and belief, is not the same as someone taking over a word and trying to confine it to something he believes about what the word refers to.  My days are done here if this continues.  I am now become too sick of it to put up with anymore.

Ron
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21 posted 01-22-2009 01:14 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

So you think everyone in the world should just ignore dictionaries and common usage, Essorant, and acquiesce to whatever you want a word to mean? And if we don't, you don't want to talk to us any more?

That's your choice, of course. While I'll admit that 90 percent of the time I choose to just smile and ignore your lexical idiosyncrasies as harmless, I have no intention of ever rolling over and playing dead. I'm honestly sorry if that offends you, but words are too important to take so lightly. I'll support your right to say it, but continue to reserve my right to disagree. It's up to you how you choose to deal with it.


Essorant
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22 posted 01-22-2009 02:30 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

No, what I think is that people should not accuse a person that puts forth arguments and beliefs about something, whether "supernaturalism", "omniscience", "god" "ghosts", etc,, as attempting to change the meaning of the word to the argument or belief itself.  Having different arguments and beliefs about something is not the same as "murdering, mangling, gutting" etc a word.  I no more wish omniscience to have my beliefs about it in the dictionary than I wish the definition of "house" to have the specifications of my house.


Stephanos
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23 posted 01-22-2009 07:43 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

schnigglefarggins!  You two quit fighting like that.  
Stephanos
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24 posted 01-22-2009 07:56 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Seriously Ess,

I want to let it rest.  Still, it doesn't seem to be just the content of argument, but the usage of the word "omniscient" that raised such a ruckus in a previous thread.

Still I say, we should all lighten up.  Perhaps the best response to a neologism (snagged that word from BobK) is to just pass it by, if pointing out the infraction is not acknowledged.  

We've all been under friendly fire in these forums from time to time, Ess.  Wanting to leave is quite an overreaction in my opinion.  Even if you do stretch a word beyond recognition from time to time, you are a part of the family and contribute alot.  

Just my thoughts,

Stephen    
 
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