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Old 01-02-2014, 09:47 PM   #126
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Originally Posted by oggbashan View Post
The Ancient Greeks also had a similar device for launching their javelins - but it was banned in Olympic Games.
And I thought I was fairly knowledgeable about Hellenic weapons and warfare.
Guess not.

I'd always wondered why the Roman Legions didn't use a similar device for the pilum
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Old 01-03-2014, 01:44 AM   #127
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DYSPHEMISM

: the substitution of a disagreeable, offensive, or disparaging expression for an agreeable or inoffensive one; also : an expression so substituted
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Old 01-03-2014, 03:07 AM   #128
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... character-revealing voice-ian roundaboutation might be acceptable, but confusing verbosity is not.

I was surprised that "roundaboutation" was a real word that Collins English Dictionary says is a synonym for "Circumlocution" -- which is itself a seldom used word.
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Old 01-03-2014, 03:30 AM   #129
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... character-revealing voice-ian roundaboutation might be acceptable, but confusing verbosity is not.

I was surprised that "roundaboutation" was a real word that Collins English Dictionary says is a synonym for "Circumlocution" -- which is itself a seldom used word.
I've seen it used more frequently of late in some of the heavyweight press, being very disparaging about politicians.
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Old 01-03-2014, 06:21 AM   #130
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And I thought I was fairly knowledgeable about Hellenic weapons and warfare.
Guess not.

I'd always wondered why the Roman Legions didn't use a similar device for the pilum
The woomera and similar devices are OK for increased distance but useless for accuracy unless the user is very very skilled. The impact of the Roman pilum was like a musketry salvo - a mass of them at short range. If they had used a woomera, the impact would have been dissipated and the enemy would have had time to avoid the pilum.
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Old 01-03-2014, 12:21 PM   #131
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A good day to all.

This word is often-used, but I had no idea its first definition is thus;


normal(1) - noun 1. perpendicular; especially: perpendicular to a tangent at a point of tangency 2.a. according with, constituting, or not deviating from a norm, rule, or principle b. conforming to a type, standard, or regular pattern 3. occurring naturally <normal immunity> 4.a. of, relating to, or characterized by average intelligence or development b. free from mental disorder: SANE 5.a. of a solution: having a concentration of one gram equivalent of solute per liter b. containing neither basic hydroxyl nor acid hydrogen <normal silver phosphate> c. not associated <normal molecules> d. having a straight-chain structure <normal butyl alcohol> 6. of a subgroup: having the property that every coset produced by operating on the left by a given element is equal to the coset produced by operating on the right by the same element 7. relating to, involving, or being a normal curve or normal distribution <normal approximation to the binomial distribution> 8. of a matrix: having the property of commutativity under multiplication by the transpose of the matrix each of whose elements is a conjugate complex number with respect to the corresponding element of the given matrix
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Old 01-03-2014, 12:32 PM   #132
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A good day to all.

This word is often-used, but I had no idea its first definition is thus;


normal(1) - noun 7. relating to, involving, or being a normal curve or normal distribution <normal approximation to the binomial distribution>
Also called the Gaussian curve or distribution.
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Old 01-03-2014, 06:01 PM   #133
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Also called the Gaussian curve or distribution.
The "Bell curve" ?
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Old 01-04-2014, 01:00 AM   #134
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The "Bell curve" ?
Just so.
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Old 01-04-2014, 12:16 PM   #135
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I am currently researching Masonic Lodge history of the world and especially in the creation of Washington, D.C. My dictionary says normal comes from the Latin word normalis and the French word norma, which means carpenter's square. I suppose that is how normal came to mean perpendicular, which surprised me greatly. Norm has a definition (2) that seems to be directly taken from the Masonic teachings.

norm - noun 1. an authoritative standard: MODEL 2. a principle of right action binding upon the members of a group and serving to guide, control, or regulate proper and acceptable behavior 3. AVERAGE: as a. a set standard of development or achievement usually derived from the average or median achievement of a large group b. a pattern or trait taken to be typical in the behavior of a social group
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Old 01-05-2014, 11:50 AM   #136
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A pleasant Sunday wish for everyone. After going through the non section of the dictionary, I found this word, which is seldom-used here, but may not be elsewhere;

nonce(1) - noun the one, particular, or present occasion, purpose or use [for the ~]

nonce(2) - adj occurring, used, or made only once or for a special occasion [~ word]
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Old 01-05-2014, 12:38 PM   #137
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Originally Posted by AllardChardon View Post
A pleasant Sunday wish for everyone. After going through the non section of the dictionary, I found this word, which is seldom-used here, but may not be elsewhere;

nonce(1) - noun the one, particular, or present occasion, purpose or use [for the ~]

nonce(2) - adj occurring, used, or made only once or for a special occasion [~ word]
My little Oxford reckons that NONCE is also a slang term for a sexual deviant, especially child-molesting.
The only time I heard it used politely, was in Shakespeare; the others were referring to a person . . .
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Old 01-05-2014, 02:43 PM   #138
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Good to know, Handley. I wonder if that comes from the notion that the pedophile only did it once, or that is what he has to say in his defense. I thought I remembered it from the Bard, because I had to look it up and see what it meant.

These two seem the same, but are not;

nominal - adj 1. of, relating to, or being a noun or a word or expression taking a noun construction 2.a. of, relating to, or constituting a name b. bearing the name of a person 3.a. existing or being something in name or form only [~ head of his party] b. TRIFLING, INSIGNIFICANT 4. being according to plan: SATISFACTORY [everything was ~ during the spacecraft launch]

nominalism - noun a theory that there are no universal essences in reality and that the mind can frame no single concept or image corresponding to any universal or general term
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Old 01-05-2014, 04:22 PM   #139
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Nonny-Nonny, especially as Hey Nonny-Nonny. A meaningless refrain for a 16th to 18th Century song, usually replacing the obscene refrain which the singers and audience would know and assume has been replaced by nonny-nonny for public performance.

[Og's note: The singers' gestures usually made clear WHICH obscene words had been replaced - still current practice for some Rugby songs, although nonny-nonny is no longer used.]
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Old 01-05-2014, 07:28 PM   #140
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Adsorption: the adhesion of atoms, ions, or molecules from a gas, liquid, or dissolved solid to a surface.

I'll always remember this one, because I challenged it in Scrabble once. Oops.
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Old 01-05-2014, 07:41 PM   #141
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Og, I do remember discussing nonny-nonny before and remember it had a least one definition that included fornicating in the form of "nonnying". I will have to look into where I found that information.

nomenclator - noun 1. a book containing collection or lists of words 2. archaic: one who announces the names of guests or of persons generally 3. one who gives names to or invents names for things
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Here will be an old abusing of God’s patience and the King’s English.

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Old 01-06-2014, 03:34 AM   #142
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Og, I do remember discussing nonny-nonny before and remember it had a least one definition that included fornicating in the form of "nonnying". I will have to look into where I found that information.

nomenclator - noun 1. a book containing collection or lists of words 2. archaic: one who announces the names of guests or of persons generally 3. one who gives names to or invents names for things
Entered in Error.
Sorry.
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:10 AM   #143
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Good day, everyone. Has anyone ever heard of this next word?

nomen - noun the second of three usual names of an ancient Roman

I wonder what the other two are?
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:14 AM   #144
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Good day, everyone. Has anyone ever heard of this next word?

nomen - noun the second of three usual names of an ancient Roman

I wonder what the other two are?
Praenomen and cognomen

Cognomen was the usual name e.g. Marcus Tullius Cicero

It could be the personal name, nickname or epithet e.g. Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus He was known as Scipio, or Africanus, or Scipio Africanus.

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Old 01-06-2014, 11:21 AM   #145
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Praenomen and cognomen

Cognomen was the usual name e.g. Marcus Tullius Cicero

It could be the personal name, nickname or epithet e.g. Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus He was known as Scipio, or Africanus, or Scipio Africanus.
The nomen was, if I remember correctly, akin to a clan or family name; the cognomen was the name by which you were known - addressed or referred to by; and the praenomen was a "first" or "pre" name, a personal one that only your family used for you.
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:23 AM   #146
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The nomen was, if I remember correctly, akin to a clan or family name; the cognomen was the name by which you were known - addressed or referred to by; and the praenomen was a "first" or "pre" name, a personal one that only your family used for you.
Yes. For Scipio, Cornelius was the family name.

For Julius Caesar, he was of the Julian family. His full name was Gaius Julius Caesar. There are several explanations for 'Caesar' - According to Pliny because one of Caesar's ancestors was born by caesarian section; according to a later history 1. that he had a lot of hair, 2. that he had grey eyes, or 3. that he had killed an elephant. Caesar himself seems to have preferred explanation 3.

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Old 01-06-2014, 11:33 AM   #147
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Most interesting, Og and Tio, and thank you for the information. Now, I understand it much better.

Of course, I had heard of nom de plume as a pen name or pseudonym, but not this one;

nom de guerre - noun PSEUDONYM
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:40 AM   #148
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Atlatl: noun, A grooved stick used to increase power and distance when throwing a spear.
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The Australian Aborigines had a similar device but in some of their languages it was called a Woomera - later used for the missile testing range.
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Thanks, I couldna remember Aborigine name for the thing. Atlatl is the Nahuatl (Aztec) word.
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The Ancient Greeks also had a similar device for launching their javelins - but it was banned in Olympic Games.
Yes, the spear-thrower has been in general use by Homo for a few thousand years. It adds one more lever to the throw, multiplying the force. Stones could be drilled out and added to the atlatl to add even greater force. They were also used for throwing shorter spears - darts, and this was the primary power of the Aztec army. And even before the Aztec, Teotihuacan, north of Mexico was not only a spiritual centre, but also a centre of weapon manufacture. At the Temple of the Moon, Obsidian was turned into rather effective projectile points for atlatl darts and other sharp tools of the trade.
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:46 AM   #149
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Most interesting, Og and Tio, and thank you for the information. Now, I understand it much better.

Of course, I had heard of nom de plume as a pen name or pseudonym, but not this one;

nom de guerre - noun PSEUDONYM
Literally, war name; it refers to pseudonyms used for particular social roles, such as a warrior. The name often derived from some feat or feature of the warrior that others took note of and would reflect his prowess in battle. I shouldn't say "his," though; and even Yeats gave Niamh the nom de guerre "Man-Picker."
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:49 AM   #150
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Most interesting, Og and Tio, and thank you for the information. Now, I understand it much better.

Of course, I had heard of nom de plume as a pen name or pseudonym, but not this one;

nom de guerre - noun PSEUDONYM
nom de guerre - name for war, was and is used for fighters such as boxers and wrestlers. It was a name chosen to be memorable. There was a professional UK wrestler called 'Giant Haystacks'. His real name was Martin Austin Ruane.

The ancient Greek and Roman fighters, including professional gladiators, had a nom de guerre.

The idea was (and is) that they could separate their private and professional identities...
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