Thoughts on Wot We Speek

One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple. ~ Jack Kerouac

Who wouldn’t be confused by a language where a pastry is a sweetmeat and a pancreas is a sweetbread? ~ Anon (my favourite writer)

“It is often forgotten that dictionaries are artificial repositories, put together well after the languages they define. The roots of language are irrational and of a magical nature.” ~ Jorge Luis Borges

“Correct” spelling, indeed, is one of the arts that are far more esteemed by schoolma’ams than by practical men, neck-deep in the heat and agony of the world. ~ HL Mencken

“The older I grow, the less important the comma becomes. Let the reader catch his own breath.” ~ Elizabeth Clarkson Zwart

The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don’t just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary. ~ James D. Nicoll

“The difference between literature and journalism is that journalism is unreadable and literature is not read.” ~  Oscar Wilde

Those who only use language to throw crude rocks are vulnerable to its sharp and deadly rapier thrusts. ~ Anon

 

 

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