“English is a language built mostly out of two others. Much of it was created out of the language of invaders who came to Britain around 450 ad from Anglia and Saxony (in what we’d now call northern Germany). About 600 years later the French invaded and brought their language with them, too; it was derived from Latin. The new French competed with Old English, and the outcome was a language—modern English—built out of both.
Often words with similar meanings from the two languages were both turned into English words, such as make (Saxon) and create (from French), or need (Saxon) and require (from French). So in English you can say almost anything with two kinds of words: short, simple ones with Saxon origins, or fancier ones that come from Latin.”-Ward Farnsworth, “What Did Lincoln Know About Language That We Don’t?” Reason.com. June 22, 2020.
“Hundreds of books about the Russian-speaking world are scheduled to be published in English in 2019. This list narrows that group down to 104 that show exceptional promise — and gives you the tools to find the ones you’ll love in seconds…
…the previews below are largely laudatory, but their optimism can make them a light read in and of themselves: this collection will take you from literary greats to romping counterfactual histories and from dark Soviet humor to gorgeous children’s books.”—Hilah Kohen, “2019’s top Russia-related books: ‘Meduza’ has your reading list for the next 10,000 years.” Meduza. January 30, 2019.
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h/t Electric Eel
Not the OED, but the closest thing for free online.
So, after reading “You’re probably using the wrong dictionary,” I thought I would give installing Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) on a Debian-flavor of Linux a try and write it up the process and some observations of its use.
Installation on a Debian-flavor of Linux is straight-forward:
$ sudo apt-get install stardict
$ cd Downloads
$ wget https://s3.amazonaws.com/jsomers/dictionary.zip
$ unzip dictionary.zip
$ cd dictionary
$ tar -xvjf stardict-dictd-web1913-2.4.2.tar.bz2
$ cd stardict-dictd-web1913-2.4.2/
$ sudo mv *.* /usr/share/stardict/dic/
This launches the main application. There is also a mini-window that can be moved to where you like and then you can use it with other applications by highlighting text. Here’s a screenshot of this article:
When you highlight a word, it will automatically be searched for and displayed in the mini-window.
Entries include pronunciation, etymological origin, related words, definition and an example of usage, often from literature. I can imagine this being a very useful tool. It might be worth checking if my writing from this date changes in an appreciable way and whether it is an improvement or not.
- “A good Christian can not attend church and still be saved.”
- “A good Christian cannot attend church and still be saved.”
“Example 1 speaks uncontroversially of the possibility that good Christians may be forgiven for lax church attendance. Example 2, by contrast, states a radically anticlerical claim: that church attendance will wreck your chances of salvation.”
—Geoffry Pullum,”A Moment of Sympathy for the Old Fogeys and Snoots.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. October 28, 2018
Even if general usage would make these interchangable, I cannot abide using can not and cannot as if they were the same.
Every new generation contends with the no longer relevant advice of the previous generation. After World War II, a booming economy made lifetime jobs with pensions the norm. But, by the time Generation X was born, corporate downsizing, off-shoring and the creation of the 401(k) in 1978, made many of the beliefs of the Boomer generation irrelevant to the contempory workplace. Still, Generation X were called “slackers” both because the environment was different and seeing the materialism of their parents did not bring them happiness, they brought in different values.
I think a similar dynamic is in play with the term: “adulting”, which implies the “[husband/w]ife; children; house; everything. The full catastrophe.” Notions of needing to work 9-to-5, car payments, home ownership and so forth are as out of step with the modern work environment as believing in lifetime employment and pensions. Yet, this standard, which is just as bad as the materialist and consumer values of the Boomer generation, is how younger people — albeit in a seemingly joking manner — are encouraged to think of themselves, a social gaslighting designed to birth an imposter syndrome in the young. So, the use of the term is a bit of a crime against the language — being an adult has nothing to do with mortgages, but it’s really an example of the bad ideas mass culture propagates that harm everyone that comes into contact with them.