Wednesday, June 18, 2014

On Forgotten Words and Lost Meanings...

"...By writing The Trojan Women, Euripides shrove.
Shrive is a verb that has become archaic. Deriving from the latin scribere, "to write", it means "to make or hear confession, impose penance, call for absolution". In old and medieval English, it referred to written judgments and penalties in both religious and legal enterprises. It is significant that this word has disappeared from our modern vocabulary, with the exception of the rare idiomatic expression "to give short shrift", by now emptied of its original moral and spiritual meaning of making confession before punishment. It is critical that we note these linguistic changes, for when a word disappears from the language community, the concept it carries weakens and may even disappear as well."

From "The Practice of Dream Healing ~ Bringing Ancient Greek Mysteries into Modern Medicine" by Edward Tick

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