Sunday, 25 December 2016

, Sunday, Christmas Day, 2016.

Went out  to Aldham Church this morning. Picture shows Ruth, Ann, and Ruth's two daughters.

Near the Church is the above water feature, which is an old duck decoy. It was cleaned out a few years ago. Don't know when it was last used, though.

Ruth's daughters  are both very artistic (like their mother) and  spent part of this  afternoon decorating the Christmas cake with a wintry scene, snowman, etc.  We've had no snow here yet, I'm glad to report; but they live in Sweden, so they've had good opportunities to study the stuff, already   this  winter. They  are both teenagers (the oldest one is at Uni) and both are already taller than I am. Been a good Christmas Day.

Tomorrow we are expecting most of the rest of our family to come and spend the day with us, so there'll be well over twenty of us at lunch. Looking forward to it.

Good Night to  All our friends.  Enjoy the rest of Christmas. Warm Regards, Mike, Ann, and Family.


Sir Bruin said...

Wishing your good self and your even gooder* lady belated Christmas wishes from us both.
*(I know "gooder" is not a word, but it should be)

Crowbard said...

You have the right of it Sir Bruin; I found the following relevant question and response at:-

Good, Better, Best
Three degrees of goodification.

Dear Word Detective: It’s election time over here in dear old Blighty, so I thought I’d ease the boredom by asking a question. Lots of talk, most of it rubbish, about inflation and export of goods, import of goods and so on. It suddenly occurred to me I hadn’t the faintest idea why purchasable things were called “goods,” and neither does my dictionary by the looks of it. Why “goods”? We don’t talk about “bads,” although perhaps we should. And, as a parting shot, how did the comparative and superlative of “good” ever get to be “better” and “best”? Surely “gooder” and “goodest” would have been more obvious? — David, Ripon, England.

Ah yes, elections. Time for a change again. I’d go with Tweedledee if I were you. Oh, look, you folks have already voted. Whatever. I’m sure the goodest dude won.

Since I actually take absolutely everything very, very seriously, I know I’m going to be plagued by guilt if I don’t explain your reference to “Blighty,” British slang for England. It’s a souvenir of the British occupation of India, a modification of the Hindi word “bilati,” meaning “foreign.”

I’d definitely go for calling several of my recent purchases “bads,” from the answering machine that garbles every message to the waterproof boots with the creatively ventilated toes. But we’ve been calling property, possessions and other things that can be bought and sold “goods” for quite a long time, so I’m afraid we’re stuck with the term.

I actually covered the origin of “good” fairly recently in a column on the connections between “good” and “god” on one hand and “evil” and “devil” on the other. (There aren’t any, incidentally.) But, to recap, our modern word “good” is rooted in the Germanic word “gath,” meaning “to bring together” (which also gave us “gather” and “together” {also girt and garth [Crowbard]}). The evolution of the adjective “good” seems to have progressed from “united” to “suitable” to “pleasing, favorable” to “good” in all the positive senses we have today.

“Good” as a noun was an outgrowth of its use as an adjective, and the earliest noun use of “good” was to mean very broadly “that which is good” or “goodness” itself (“They are reformed, full of good, … And fit for great employment,” Shakespeare, 1590). By around 1300, we were using “good” to mean “a desirable end or object,” and by the mid-15th century, we had narrowed that down to “commodities or merchandise.”

Life would be a bit simpler, especially for folks learning English, if the comparative and superlative forms of “good” conformed to the usual practice and appended “er” (“gooder”) and “est” (“goodest”) to the base word (as in “long,” “longer” and “longest”). But it’s too late now, because we’re stuck using the forms that went with the Germanic root “bat,” meaning “advantage or improvement.” Its comparative form was “batizon,” and its superlative was “batistaz,” which entered English as “betera” and “betest.” These were later smoothed out to “better” and “best” and adopted as the companions to “good,” which lacked its own comparative and superlative.

So what happened to that Germanic root “bat”? It doesn’t exist in English, but one of its descendants does, albeit a bit obscurely. The very old noun “boot,” meaning “advantage or benefit” is now nearly obsolete, but is still found in the expression “to boot,” meaning “in addition, added into the bargain” (“Bob got new glasses for just twenty bucks, and a free spare pair to boot”). Ideally, we probably should have been using “boot” instead of “good” for the past few centuries (giving us “boot,” “better” and “best”), but, as I said, it’s way too late now.

PixieMum said...

Best seasonal greetings to you and to Ann, we hope to see you at the next blog party. The clock you repaired for us is still going well in spite of being moved to a different wall. Thank you.

Madeleine and Ian.

Crowbard said...

With regards to the Word-detective's last paragraph we also still occasionally use the word 'free-booter' disparagingly of someone who takes without paying or without intending to return the favour; i.e. someone who receives goods freely like the bloke with the short arms and deep pockets who never stands his round.

Mike said...

Crowbard - your explanation of the term blighty/bilati. Is that the origin of the term 'bilati foreigners'?