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  • (Quote) A quote from William Harris on the subject: (Quote) I'm not really prepared to unpack all that, but I thought it was worth mentioning. There are several cases in which foreign loan words seem more appropriate than any English equivalent would be, as in the cases of schadenfreude, déjà vu, or a cappella. I'm not sure katastematic is on that level though!
  • There are basically two schools of thought, one representing a prescriptive approach to language and embodied by the Académie Française, and the other, a descriptive approach to language typified by the Oxford English Dictionary. I prefer the OED approach myself, which is much more in accord with the Lucretian view of language--a view that sees it as naturally and gradually developing and changing over time. In this view there is no authority. The Oxford English Dictionary is unusually thorough,…
  • (Quote) I was thinking of this exchange in Richard II in relation to 'ataraxia under duress'. John of Gaunt is Bolingbroke's father, and has dutifully argued for his own son's banishment--a service to the king which he comes to bitterly regret. One senses that his advice is as much for himself as for his son. But Bolingbroke is having none of it. "Who can hold a fire in his hand by thinking on the frosty Caucasus?"