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Wednesday, May 03, 2006

abs of paper

Well, here I am again, wandering through the dictionary, admiring the words along the way. I noticed that ab inito was Latin for ‘from the beginning’ and I also took note that ab ovo likewise means ‘from the beginning. Latin is mostly Greek to me but it seems to me that there are, or at least should be, subtle differences in those meanings. The first of these is possibly leaning toward the beginning of an action and the second toward the start of a living thing of some sort.

How was I to know without word exploration that abaft meant to the rear of or toward the stern. I was a bit abashed that I didn’t know that an abatis was a defensive obstacle formed from rows of tree branches, with an end of each branch facing outward toward the enemy. Nor did I know that an abat-jour was a device for diverting light into a building, such as a skylight or reflector.

One of the meanings of an abecedarian is a beginner in any field, which is what I sometimes feel like in the field of language – even my own native tongue. The word abracadabra is any charm or incantation using nonsensical or supposedly magical words – it also means meaningless talk, gibberish or nonsense.

To abscond is to depart in a sudden and secret manner, especially to avoid legal prosecution. The person doing this action is usually taking something with them that does not belong to them, like money or someone else’s wife, husband or other person. Many times the ‘take with’ person is abetting them – which is to encourage or support by aid or approval, usually in wrongdoing.

The word absolute has several meanings, not the least is: viewed independently; not comparative; ultimate. Many folks in our world do not believe in absolutes, especially in the moral sense. I’m not exactly sure why some otherwise very intelligent people believe that everything is subjective and in so doing place excessive emphasis on their own moods, attitudes or opinions. The problem with this is that right and wrong can change definitions even several times in a day.

There are absolutes, things that are always right or always wrong. This is according to a Book I read daily and it is always the Truth. And the Truth does not vary because men forget, ignore or traduce it.

To absolve is to free from guilt or blame or their consequences. This is what God will do for us when we have done something that is absolutely wrong. This absolution was paid for by the death of Jesus and is eternal because of His rising from the dead and it is ours for the asking.

The phrase ‘a bientot’ is French for see you soon or so long. ec

6 Comments:

Blogger Jayleigh said...

Latin is mostly Greek to me

sooooooo funny

5/03/2006 10:44:00 PM  
Blogger Granny said...

After two years of high school Latin(doesn't that date me?) I remember almost nothing.

5/03/2006 11:10:00 PM  
Blogger mreddie said...

jayleigh - Thanks, it came from a weird mind - mine. :)

granny - I don't remember any Latin either - that could be because I didn't take it in high school. :) ec

5/04/2006 12:13:00 AM  
Blogger Granny said...

I thought I wanted to be a nurse (all little girls did back then) and it required two years of Latin - don't ask me why except to read prescriptions.

Comment on granny - if you had kids who grew a foot between one spring and the next, you'd be very familiar with the spring shopping spree. "How's that for alliteration?

5/04/2006 01:24:00 AM  
Blogger Yours truly said...

Aaah, I have just added to my vocabulary! Thank you! a bientot!

5/04/2006 02:33:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

granny - My daughter wanted to be a nurse as well and even started nursing school, but when her first assignment was in geriatrics she decided to change her major. I think they did this on purpose to weed out the non-serious ones. I liked the alliteration, but I only smile during the short, swift, sparce spending, spring shopping sprees. :)

yours truly - Many words have been added to my vocabulary but sometimes they are forgotten soon after being added. :) ec

5/04/2006 05:09:00 PM  

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