Usage Quotes (displaying: 1 - 10 of 92 quotes )
What therefore is truth? A mobile army of metaphors, metonymies, anthropomorphisms: in short a sum of human relations which became poetically and rhetorically intensified, metamorphosed, adorned, and after long usage seem to a notion fixed, canonic, and binding; truths are illusions of which one has forgotten that they are illusions; worn-out metaphors which have become powerless to affect the senses; coins which have their obverse effaced and now are no longer of account as coins but merely as metal.
To husband is to use with care, to keep, to save, to make last, to conserve. Old usage tells us that there is a husbandry also of the land, of the soil, of the domestic plants and animals - obviously because of the importance of these things to the household. And there have been times, one of which is now, when some people have tried to practice a proper human husbandry of the nondomestic creatures in recognition of the dependence of our households and domestic life upon the wild world. Husbandry is the name of all practices that sustain life by connecting us conservingly to our places and our world; it is the art of keeping tied all the strands in the living network that sustains us. And so it appears that most and perhaps all of industrial agriculture's manifest failures are the result of an attempt to make the land produce without husbandry.
In reality, genuine epiphanies are extremely rare. In contemporary adult life maturation & acquiescence to reality are gradual processes. Modern usage usually deploys epiphany as a metaphor. It is usually only in dramatic representations, religious iconography, and the 'magical thinking' of children that insight is compressed to a sudden blinding flash.
She was, in fact, quite a pleasant looking girl, even if her bosom had clearly been intended for a girl two feet taller; but she was not Her. The Egregious Professor of Grammar and Usage would have corrected this to "she was not she," which would have caused the Professor of Logic to spit out his drink.
What then is truth? A movable host of metaphors, metonymies, and anthropomorphisms: in short, a sum of human relations which have been poetically and rhetorically intensified, transferred, and embellished, and which, after long usage, seem to a people to be fixed, canonical, and binding. Truths are illusions which we have forgotten are illusions? they are metaphors that have become worn out and have been drained of sensuous force.
In ways that certain of us are uncomfortable about, SNOOTs’ attitudes about contemporary usage resemble religious/political conservatives’ attitudes about contemporary culture. We combine a missionary zeal and a near-neural faith in our beliefs’ importance with a curmudgeonly hell-in-a-handbasket despair at the way English is routinely manhandled and corrupted by supposedly educated people. The Evil is all around us: boners and clunkers and solecistic howlers and bursts of voguish linguistic methane that make any SNOOT’s cheek twitch and forehead darken. A fellow SNOOT I know likes to say that listening to most people’s English feels like watching somebody use a Stradivarius to pound nails: We are the Few, the Proud, the Appalled at Everyone Else.
It is remarkable that circumcision, which is invariably practiced by th. E Mahometans, and forms a distinguishing rite of their faith, to which all proselytes must conform, is neither mentioned in the Koran nor the Sonna. It seems to have been a general usage in Arabia, tacitly adopted from the Jews, and is even said to have been prevalent throughout the East before the time of Moses. It is said that the Koran forbids the making likenesses of any living thing, which has prevented the introduction of portrait-painting among Mahometans. The passage of the Koran, however, which is thought to contain the prohibition, seems merely an echo of the second commandment, held sacred by Jews and Christians, not to form images or pictures for worship. One of Mahomet's standards was a black eagle. Among the most distinguished Moslem ornaments of the Alhambra at Granada is a fountain supported by lions carved of stone, and some Moslem monarchs have had their effigies stamped on their coins.