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REPAIR

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REPAIR

Postby Dr. Goodword » Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:59 pm

• repair •

Pronunciation: ree-perHear it!

Part of Speech: Verb, intransitive

Meaning: To betake oneself to a place or person, to proceed to, to sojourn (for those who do not condescend to simply 'go' places).

Notes: After dinner you may repair or retire to the library but what is the difference? To retire to a place implies that you withdraw from company and go there for seclusion or solitude. Repair originally meant "return" and often implies returning to a place often frequented. You may repair to your favorite bar every weekend but you would hardly retire there. You might want to repair to the garage to repair your car after dinner but remember: these are two unrelated words coincidentally spelled the same, as the Word History shows. Today's Good Word is only intransitive, i.e. you cannot repair anything in this sense of this verb.

In Play: OK, so this Good Word is a bit dated but it is still in the dictionaries and vocabularies of most English speakers and has that comfortable feel of your favorite cardigan: "My professor announced today that if we have any problems with our papers we may repair to his office for assistance." He will no doubt suggest ways to repair them. "When my car broke down on the road, I quickly repaired to the nearest garage for a quick repair." Get the idea?

Word History: Today's Good Word comes from repairier, the Old French makeover of Latin repatrire "to return to your native land", the same verb that gave us repatriate. This verb consists of re- "back" + patria "country, fatherland", a noun taken from the patrius "paternal", the adjective of pater "father". This word is an excellent example of how [p] and [t] in Proto-Indo-European became [f] and [th], respectively, in Germanic languages for in English the same root is now father. The transitive verb repair comes via French reparer from Latin reparare "restore, renew" made up of re- "back, again" + parare "to prepare". The fact that they are spelled the same today is essentially coincidental. (We are grateful today to Peter Evans of London, Ontario for repairing to us with today's still useful and usable word.)
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Postby Perry » Tue Jan 16, 2007 11:01 am

So if I close my office to head to the Beer Garden (there is such a place just downstairs), I will have 'closed for repairs'.
"Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening all at once. Lately it hasn't been working."
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Postby Bailey » Tue Jan 16, 2007 12:58 pm

Where do you work again? are they hiring?

mark the-spot Bailey

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FEL TEMP REPARATIO

Postby dougsmit » Tue Jan 16, 2007 1:22 pm

On first reading, I had an issue with today's Goodword. 'Repair' would seem related to the Latin Reparatio which makes up a significant part of the legend on the single most common coin type surviving from the Roman Empire. The Romans changed coin types very frequently but FEL TEMP REPARATIO
http://dougsmith.ancients.info/ftr.html was used for over a decade starting c. 347 AD. Since inflation was rampant at that time, millions of coins exist bearing the word.

FEL TEMP REPARATIO is often paraphrased as "Happy days are here again." This translation owes much to the campaign slogan of U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt and is little understood by recent generations who have no recollection of FDR. More literally, the legend is translated as 'to the restoration of happy times'. I asked myself whether this is a return to better days or a fixing of something broken. In the end, I'm not sure that most people fond of the 'good old days' would see much difference in the concept since, like FDR, a return to happy days would to them entail a fixing of modern problems.

Certainty on how to read the coin inscription would require that the mint not abbrviated the endings of the words. Without further evidence we lack the ability to say whether we should read 'fixing times so they are happy' or 'returning to the happy days'. If we accept Dr. Goodword's separation of the two, I need to rethink the Latin and how I might fill out these inscriptions before translating.

Any help in seeing where I am misunderstanding this subject would be appreciated.
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FEL TEMP REPARATIO

Postby Don » Wed Jan 17, 2007 8:07 am

Doug -

Thanks. That was fascinating.

I don't have Latin and don't know coins, but nonetheless suggest the Romans may have had Dr. G's intransitive sense of "repair" in mind. It probably would have been controversial and impolitic for Constantine and his successors to imply they were transitively "fixing" anything in particular. Adopting an entirely new official religion and thereby disrespecting Rome's traditional gods certainly could not, by any stretch of imagination, be construed as fixing something that used to work but now was broken. Rather, one probably should expect for Constantine with his coinage to have sought to imply vaguely that things are gonna get better again, and Rome's people will before they know it be having every bit as much fun as their ancestors.

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Postby Stargzer » Wed Jan 17, 2007 12:30 pm

Perry wrote:So if I close my office to head to the Beer Garden (there is such a place just downstairs), I will have 'closed for repairs'.


Or perhaps "Closed to Repair"
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Re: FEL TEMP REPARATIO

Postby Stargzer » Wed Jan 17, 2007 12:39 pm

dougsmit wrote:...'Repair' would seem related to the Latin Reparatio which makes up a significant part of the legend on the single most common coin type surviving from the Roman Empire. The Romans changed coin types very frequently but FEL TEMP REPARATIO
http://dougsmith.ancients.info/ftr.html was used for over a decade starting c. 347 AD. Since inflation was rampant at that time, millions of coins exist bearing the word.

FEL TEMP REPARATIO is often paraphrased as "Happy days are here again." ...


I found another sample of coins here. Obviously, the "good times are here again" did not apply to the fallen horesman! I'll bet the Roman soldier's name is Alex; can't you just hear him belting out an a cappella version of Singing In The Rain? :wink:
Regards//Larry

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Postby skinem » Wed Jan 17, 2007 2:04 pm

Don and dougsmit, thank you for the posts, and welcome! It's always nice to see as many idfferent perspectives as we can.
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