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June 15, 2010


You're certainly right about Latin sounding egg-heady, and it's all Shakespeare's fault. Well, his cohort [sic] who imported all sorts of Latin words into English (they were called "inkhorn terms." There's wonderful satire of them in Ben Jonson's play "Epicoene" (the title itself!) --

Morose: . Why? if I had made an assassinate upon
your Father; vitiated your Mother: ravished your
Sisters ———
Tru. I would kill you, Sir, I would kill you, if you
Mor. Why? you do more in this, Sir: it were a ven-
geance centuple, for all facinorous Acts, that could be
nam'd, to do that you do. . . .

See you Saturday.

Outstanding post -- using the drink as a vehicle (oops, I mean a sidecar) for talking about Latinate constructions with their obfuscatory extra syllables.

Thanks to both of you. Dick, "inkhorn" --I love that! -- is as chewy as it gets. I love how that coinage couples underground resistance TO Jonson with description OF him, like shouting "a Pox on all facinorous, obfuscatory Acts!"

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