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"Peons of Praise"--The Author Said That

 
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 03:31 pm
I knew a man who had the same problem with atypical. He seemed to think that it meant an archetype, or a strikingly typical thing. Telling him didn't help. "Yeah, that's what I said--atypical."
0 Replies
 
centrox
 
  2  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 04:14 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:
In the novel How Green Was My Valley, the boy, Huw, is reading from Shakespeare, and encounters the word misled. He pronounces it "mizzled," and is ridiculed by the teacher. He replies that he can't be faulted for having read more words than he has ever heard spoken.

This was me, exactly. I even made Huw's mistake with 'misled', but only in my head. I was reading Dickens, Wells, Lawrence(!) when I was 8. In that year, 1960, Penguin Books published the unexpurgated version of Lady Chatterley's Lover and were prosecuted. They were acquitted. The prosecuting counsel famously asked the jury, "Would you want your wife or servants to read this book?" After the trial, Penguin sold 3 million copies, one of which found its way into a drawer in my parent's bedroom, whence* I would extract it whenever they were out, until I had read it all. I later went to Alleyn's School, and was surprised to learn that the headmaster had given evidence for the defence. At the time I thought he was too stuffy to have done that. How ignorant I was.

*I always think from whence is redundant, but apparently you find it in Shakespeare and, the other day, in the Guardian. The old death sentence wording used by judges was “you shall be taken to the place whence you came and thence to a place of execution where you shall be hanged by the neck until you should be dead and may the Lord have mercy on your soul.”

0 Replies
 
centrox
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 04:16 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

For one thing, 1920s is plural: ". . . 1920's were . . . " I am greatly unimpressed by anything I've read by Mr. Bryson. (He might have written: "The decade of the 1920s was . . . "

Me too; the adopted British national treasure. He recently did a "Book at Bedtime" reading on BBC radio over a week of one of his travel books including his attempts at rendering British regional dialects. Excruciating.
centrox
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 04:22 pm
Jejune is often given as an example of a word that people thinking it will make them sound clever.

ossobucotemp
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 04:30 pm
@centrox,
I'm also no fan of Bryson. OK, I liked one of his books, a long trail adventure, but I was bored and irritated with his book on England, and irate (well, sort of) about his US book, in particular for his making fun of the people in Iowa. I missed the humor of it by a mile.
centrox
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 04:37 pm
Out of whimsical books about Britain by Yanks, I much prefer the Paul Theroux one. The odd thing is that when Americans come to Britain and mock us we give them prizes and put them on the TV, but I don't know if anyone has had much success doing it the other way. Certainly not Charles Dickens.
0 Replies
 
centrox
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 05:00 pm
@ossobucotemp,
ossobucotemp wrote:
in particular for his making fun of the people in Iowa. I missed the humor of it by a mile.

A thought has struck me. Have you ever seen Mark Twain's "Some Thoughts On the Science of Onanism"? I must admit I was taken aback when I first saw it.
Quote:
Homer, in the second book of the Iliad says with fine
enthusiasm, "Give me masturbation or give me death." Caesar, in
his Commentaries, says, "To the lonely it is company; to the
forsaken it is a friend; to the aged and to the impotent it is a
benefactor. They that are penniless are yet rich, in that they
still have this majestic diversion." In another place this
experienced observer has said, "There are times when I prefer it
to sodomy."

http://www.textfiles.com/etext/AUTHORS/TWAIN/onanism.txt

centrox
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 05:04 pm
@centrox,
centrox wrote:
Jejune is often given as an example of a word that people thinking it will make them sound clever.

Oh dear. Jejune is often given as an example of a word that people use thinking it will make them sound clever.
Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 06:06 pm
@Setanta,
Set, Reading when you edit and reading when you proofread are not the same as reading when you just plain read. I was trained a long time ago when editing and proofreading were important skills to have. Now, not so much.

Technology has contributed mightily to carelessness and ignorance.

My favorite was, is now, and always will be:

purr say

I used to work on textbooks. How could an educated person submit a manuscript with that in it? I assume that the manuscript was dictated in some way and that no one read it.

farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 06:09 pm
@Roberta,
Ive served as tech editor for a journal and NEVER EVER bothered with grammar or spelling (duhh). I was there for the math and pulling down sacred cows.
Tech editing is like ingredients in a candybar. We may have to make the damn thing to prove it was right
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 06:37 pm
@Roberta,
I can no longer read history textbooks, my BP just shoots through the roof. I had an excruciating experience when The Girl recommended an historical novel to me which was written by an Englishwoman, about the United States in the period before and during our civil war. It bore exactly the same relationship to history as Christian Science does to honest to Dog science. I enjoy the novels of Bernard Cornwell, about England in the Middle Ages, but his Starbuck Chronicles about the American civil war just suck, and are almost as appalling as the novel I just mentioned. I don't think that people can do other people's history well. As the touchy-feely folks say these days, I can feel your pain. I think that text-book writing is truly a racket, and if it weren't for the supremacy that journalists can claim as the bottom-feeders of the literary world, text-book writers would be in the lowest circle of Dante's Hell.

At university, I did a double-major in History and English (as in literature in the English language). I was somewhat anxious went I went to see my advisor in the History Department to get his approval on the English program, but I needn't have worried. He waxed lyrical on the subject, at one point saying the literature is the meat on the bare bones of history. He actually wasn't worth the powder necessary to blow him to Hell, but he signed my papers, and I got out of there as soon as I could decently depart.
ossobucotemp
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Aug, 2017 07:07 pm
@centrox,
My memory of what I thought was that he took himself as a delightful raconteur. I get it one finds humor in others' behavior, but I took it as having an unnecessarily nasty edge. Than was now years ago - I might read it differently by now.

No, I've not read much Twain, never got around to it besides the book on his Italy trip.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Aug, 2017 02:30 pm
Another could have been embarrassing error in my writing: used coup when I meant coop, as in chicken coop.
roger
 
  2  
Reply Fri 4 Aug, 2017 04:34 pm
@edgarblythe,
Ya mean the chickens aren't really taking over, after all.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Aug, 2017 04:57 pm
@roger,
Chickens are too delicious ever to take over.
0 Replies
 
ascribbler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 5 Aug, 2017 12:43 am
@centrox,
Quote:
centrox wrote:

Jejune is often given as an example of a word that people thinking it will make them sound clever.


Oh dear. Jejune is often given as an example of a word that people use thinking it will make them sound clever.


How often.
centrox
 
  2  
Reply Sat 5 Aug, 2017 01:09 am
@ascribbler,
ascribbler wrote:
How often.

Is that a question?
centrox
 
  1  
Reply Sat 5 Aug, 2017 01:12 am
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:
an historical novel

I am glad I am not the only one to do this.
0 Replies
 
ascribbler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 5 Aug, 2017 02:52 am
@centrox,
Quote:
Is that a question?


Only until I put a stop to it.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 06:19 pm
This from a local newspaper's site:
boiled hot water
0 Replies
 
 

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