Tag Archives: Geoffrey Chaucer
arrant

arrant

    Found only with nonsense and one or two other nouns expressive of contempt, the adjective arrant has a curious history.   It was originally a variant of errant, meaning wandering, vagrant, vagabond, as in knight errant, a medieval knight wandering in search of chivalrous adventures.   (This vowel change, e becoming a, also […]

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tennis

tennis

  Jeu de paume – France – 17th century     Paulme: feminine. The paulme of the hand; also, a ball; (and hence) also, Tennis (play;) also, the Palme tree. from A Dictionarie of the French and English Tongues (1611), by Randle Cotgrave     Fourthly, the inside of the Uvea is black’d like the walls […]

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Green, an unsettling colour

Green, an unsettling colour

      Verdigris is a bright bluish-green encrustation or patina formed on copper or brass by atmospheric oxidation, consisting of basic copper carbonate. The word verdigris is from Old French verte-gres, earlier vert de Grece, meaning green of Greece.     ETYMOLOGIES   The word green is etymologically related to the words grass and grow. And […]

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