Alphadictionary.com

Our Sponsors

Technical Translation
Website Translation Clip Art
 

MOOT

Use this forum to discuss past Good Words.

MOOT

Postby Dr. Goodword » Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:24 pm

• moot •

Pronunciation: mut • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun & Adjective

Meaning: 1. [Noun] A public meeting, especially one convened for judicial or legislative purposes. 2. [Adjective] Arguable, debatable, open to debate, not settled, as a moot question. 3. [Adjective, Law] Undebatable, of no significance because irrelevant or already decided.

Notes: Today's word is what some have called an 'contronym', a word with two meanings that contradict each other. Outside North America, the adjective means "arguable, open to debate" while in North America it means "not debatable". The noun is seldom used in North America but is still alive in other dialects of English: "Town officials were called together in a moot to discuss enforcement of the new statute." The comparative of this word is mooter while the superlative is mootest.

In Play: We are primarily interested in the adjectival meaning of today's word. In Britain you might say, "Whether Franklin could carry the can of paint to the roof on his head without spilling any was a moot question that Franklin did not want to settle that particular day." Here the question is open, unsettled. In the US, however, someone is more likely to say, after the accident, "Whether Franklin could have made it to the roof without spilling any paint had Rory not shaken the ladder is a moot point." Here the point is no longer relevant since Franklin is currently sitting on the ground covered with paint.
Sponsor

Word History: Today's Good Word meant simply "meeting" in Middle English, when it was spelled simply mot. The adjective moot is a 16th-century legal term that derives from the noun in its sense of a hypothetical case argued as an exercise by a meeting of law students. Originally, a moot question was one that is arguable or open to debate. But in the mid-19th century people also began to look at the hypothetical side of moot as its essential meaning, and they started to use the word to mean “of no significance or relevance.” Thus, a moot point, however debatable, became one that has no practical value.
• The Good Dr. Goodword
User avatar
Dr. Goodword
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3530
Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2005 9:28 am
Location: Lewisburg, PA

Re: MOOT

Postby Slava » Thu Apr 01, 2010 9:44 pm

Dr. Goodword wrote:The comparative of this word is mooter while the superlative is mootest.
I've never thought of this word as having a comparative and superlative, it's always been just "a moot point" to me. Or, in Tolkien, an Ent moot.

Now I must try to think of ways to use it further. "Well, Bob's point was rather moot, but I do believe yours is mooter." "Gee, that's the mootest point I've ever heard."

PS: my spell check in Firefox doesn't like mootest. I had to add it to the dictionary. It does suggest "moo test," though. Good for the cows?
User avatar
Slava
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 4650
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:31 am
Location: Finger Lakes, NY

Postby saparris » Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:14 pm

We should make an effort to introduce a verb form (to mooter) into the language. It would mean "making useless or insignificant points."

"Pardon me, Bertie, but you're mootering again."
Ars longa, vita brevis
User avatar
saparris
Senior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 767
Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 5:33 pm
Location: South Carolina USA

Postby Slava » Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:33 pm

saparris wrote:We should make an effort to introduce a verb form (to mooter) into the language. It would mean "making useless or insignificant points."

"Pardon me, Bertie, but you're mootering again."
This sounds almost obscene somehow. And the infinitive, with the "to," comes across as a way to pronounce tomato.

"Ken Ah get some tomooters on that thar burger?"

I don't think it'll catch on. Though it's fun to think about, I'll stick with the adjective.
User avatar
Slava
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 4650
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:31 am
Location: Finger Lakes, NY

Postby saparris » Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:53 pm

OK. If you don't like mooter as a verb, then what about a subdivision called Moote Pointe?
Ars longa, vita brevis
User avatar
saparris
Senior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 767
Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 5:33 pm
Location: South Carolina USA

Postby Perry » Fri Apr 02, 2010 8:43 am

No doubt you get there via Ent Moot Highway.
"Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening all at once. Lately it hasn't been working."
Anonymous
User avatar
Perry
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 2306
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 9:50 am
Location: Asheville, NC

Postby saparris » Fri Apr 02, 2010 10:30 am

No doubt you get there via Ent Moot Highway.


It's just a few miles down the Ent Moot Hiighway by mootercar. Access to the subdivision is along a lovely tree-lined entrance. But be careful: the trees have a hobbit of moving about.
Ars longa, vita brevis
User avatar
saparris
Senior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 767
Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 5:33 pm
Location: South Carolina USA

Postby Slava » Fri Apr 02, 2010 2:33 pm

saparris wrote:
No doubt you get there via Ent Moot Highway.


It's just a few miles down the Ent Moot Hiighway by mootercar. Access to the subdivision is along a lovely tree-lined entrance. But be careful: the trees have a hobbit of moving about.
And make sure you aren't wearing any Axe, real or spray, when you pass the trees.
User avatar
Slava
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 4650
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:31 am
Location: Finger Lakes, NY

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sat Apr 03, 2010 11:51 am

saparris wrote:
No doubt you get there via Ent Moot Highway.


It's just a few miles down the Ent Moot Hiighway by mootercar. Access to the subdivision is along a lovely tree-lined entrance. But be careful: the trees have a hobbit of moving about.



It is so good to see you speaking in Elvish and some of
its dialects. Take the Moot Highway to Bag End.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3447
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Postby Perry » Sat Apr 03, 2010 5:20 pm

"I don't know half of you well enough. And I like some of you only half as much as you deserve."
"Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening all at once. Lately it hasn't been working."
Anonymous
User avatar
Perry
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 2306
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 9:50 am
Location: Asheville, NC

Postby saparris » Sat Apr 03, 2010 6:30 pm

"I don't know half of you well enough. And I like some of you only half as much as you deserve."


Some of us don't even know ourselves half as much as we should.
Ars longa, vita brevis
User avatar
saparris
Senior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 767
Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 5:33 pm
Location: South Carolina USA

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Apr 04, 2010 11:07 am

And others hide in anonymity for security.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3447
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Postby misterdoe » Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:18 am

saparris wrote:OK. If you don't like mooter as a verb, then what about a subdivision called Moote Pointe?


I seem to remember seeing moot (actually "mooted") used as a verb, meaning "made unnecessary, redundant" somewhere online. It may have been a humor column, though, which of course doesn't count... or should I say it moots this post. :lol:
misterdoe
Lexiterian
 
Posts: 339
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 10:21 am
Location: New York City area

Postby saparris » Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:34 am

I seem to remember seeing moot (actually "mooted") used as a verb, meaning "made unnecessary, redundant" somewhere online.


No mooting required:

moot–verb (used with object)
5.
to reduce or remove the practical significance of; make purely theoretical or academic.

from dictionary.com
Ars longa, vita brevis
User avatar
saparris
Senior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 767
Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 5:33 pm
Location: South Carolina USA

Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:14 pm

As in:
This discussion has become moot.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3447
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Next

Return to Good Word Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests

cron