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THROE

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THROE

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sun Jul 16, 2006 6:40 am

• throe •

Pronunciation: throHear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: A spasm of pain, whether physical or psychological

Notes: Today's Good Word is a lexical orphan with no other form but a plural, throes, which is used far more frequently than the singular. In the plural the word is widely used metaphorically, as to be in the throes of finishing a book for the publishers, implying that the process is a painfully difficult one.

In Play: A throe may be physical: "I'm sorry I lost my temper with you, Jerry, but I didn't think it good timing for you to ask me about the insurance card when I was in the throes of childbirth." A throe may be psychological: "Harold has taken the leap from the throes of an unhappy marriage to the even sharper throes of a messy divorce."

Word History: Today's word in Middle English was throwe, a dialectal variant of thrawe from Old English threah "pain, affliction". This word comes from Old English thráwan "to turn, twist", which is why throe does not mean simply pain but a twist or spasm of pain. The sense of "twist" is still used today in the phrase "to throw a pot", meaning to shape a pot from a lump of clay spinning (twisting) on a rotating wheel. In fact, sometimes pieces of clay break away from a pot in progress and are hurled away from the spinning wheel. This sort of occurrence could have led to the shift in meaning of throw from "to twist" to its current meaning, "hurl". (We are grateful today to Dr. Lyn Laboriel for a word that no doubt comes from the throes of her job.)
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Postby gailr » Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:59 pm

I'm surprised how often I see this misspelled as "the throws of death." Makes me want to hurl, I guess.
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Postby sluggo » Mon Jul 17, 2006 8:36 pm

gailr wrote:I'm surprised how often I see this misspelled as "the throws of death." Makes me want to hurl, I guess.
-gailr


Hee hee :wink:
On the other hand one could legitimately throe one's back out under the definition...
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Postby Huny » Mon Jul 17, 2006 10:25 pm

sluggo wrote:
gailr wrote:I'm surprised how often I see this misspelled as "the throws of death." Makes me want to hurl, I guess.
-gailr


Hee hee :wink:
On the other hand one could legitimately throe one's back out under the definition...


What about "in the throes of passion"? Sounds like something that hurts so good. :oops: Er, that's a good way to throe one's back out I guess. :oops: Seems like an oxymoron to me. Oh, well, I guess I'll quit while I'm ahead...
"What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compaired to what lies inside us." R.W.E.
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Postby gailr » Tue Jul 18, 2006 3:23 am

I've seen people write "throws of passion" as well. Makes me want to hurl...no, wait, on second thought...makes me want to keep my distance from their kind.
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Postby Bailey » Tue Jul 18, 2006 12:07 pm

I hope y'all noted that no one ever has one throe, passion or death? Gailr, That throws reminds me of the common mixup between lest and least. I've even heard people say "Least we forget."

mark
edited to correct a typo, you guys sound like you are reving up for a finger pointing session on typos.
better safe than silly.

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Postby gailr » Tue Jul 18, 2006 3:29 pm

Bailey wrote: I hope y'all noted that no one ever has one throe, passion or death? Gailr, That throws reminds me of the common mixup between lest and least. I've even heard people say "Least we forget."

Like the framed needlework proudly displayed above someone's desk: "Lest We Never Forget"? (Don't look at it...just...don't...look...)

Bailey wrote: edited to correct a typo, you guys sound like you are [add v]revving[/add v] up for a finger pointing session on typos.
better safe than silly.

Come on Bailey! We'd only point the fingers we use to type with. :wink:

-gailr

ps: I was immeasurably cheered up today to come across "breeches of ethics". (I keep wondering if they clash with the breastplate of righteousness.) Perhaps a thread for just these sorts of gaffes would be entertaining? Is the motion seconded and carried?
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Postby Stargzer » Wed Jul 19, 2006 12:23 am

gailr wrote: . . .
ps: I was immeasurably cheered up today to come across "breeches of ethics". (I keep wondering if they clash with the breastplate of righteousness.) Perhaps a thread for just these sorts of gaffes would be entertaining? Is the motion seconded and carried?


Second!

Of course, the forum for gaffes would just have to be called Gaffs. :wink: Awl sorts of malaprops would be eligible.
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Postby skinem » Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:48 am

I would love to see this. My old boss gave me a lifetime supply!
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Postby Bailey » Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:59 am

Skinem, bring em on!

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Postby skinem » Wed Jul 19, 2006 1:36 pm

My favorite was the repeated phrase "It's all just done with smoking mirrors."
Tough to keep a straight face in meetings...

He suffered from a "hianal" hernia...(insert own joke--)

He also suffered from a slipped "dist"...

At hotels he'd call for the "coneseer"...

"Sqwuezed" instead of squeezed...

To continue a thought or to add to something, always in this order..."Also, too, as well..."

Numeratical-repeatedly said it this way.

Alphacabetical--repeatedly said it.

If any of the above were meant in a humorous way (???) there was never an indication. He was very consistent in these, these weren't slips of the toungue..unfortunatley.
This was a man with a doctorate who didn't last long in his post.

More will come to me as I think about it. Yes, there were more. We used to call him Mr. Malaprop...if he had a sense of humor or humility I might have said something to him, or joked with him about it, but, alas and alak, least sense of humor of any boss I've had.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Wed Jul 19, 2006 1:57 pm

This forum is turning into a mess.

Not that I have anything against it. :D
Languages rule!
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Postby Bailey » Wed Jul 19, 2006 4:54 pm

I find the biggest problem with a really great Malaprop is that I find myself wondering which is correct? For instance if I hear TheAter often or 'very unique'(not great Malaprops btw) I must stop and say, now which is right, though my inner person knows exactly what's right.

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