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MANOR

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MANOR

Postby Dr. Goodword » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:27 pm

• manor •


Pronunciation: mæn-êr • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: 1. The main house on a landed estate, usually a mansion. 2. A tract of land with hereditary rights granted by royal charter. 3. (Historical) The estate of a lord, a landed possession of a lord, including the lands which he governs.

Notes: The adjective accompanying today's Good Word is manorial. Should we decide to shift to a manorial system of government, we would manorialize the counties, as we did in the past. The phrase "to the manor born" began its life in the 17th century as "to the manner born", meaning "familiar with the customs of a place from birth". This phrase is now taken to mean "naturally suited for". Since manor and manner are pronounced identically, the spelling of this phrase has been confused since the middle of the 18th century. The BBC took advantage of this confusion with its TV series, To the Manor Born, implying that one is accustomed to living in lordly fashion.

In Play: This Good Word today usually refers to a large estate in the country or just a mansion: "When Norman Conquest made his millions, he spent it all on a manor in the country, complete with moat, which he stocked with trout." I suppose we should accept the phrase "to the manor born", now that it has taken up residence in all the major dictionaries: "Now Norman's children behave as though they were to the manor born—well, I guess they were, weren't they?"

Word History: This word comes to us from Old French maneir, manoir "dwelling, to dwell" from Latin manere "to stay, remain". This root may be seen in Greek menein "to remain", Persian mandan "to remain", and Armenian mnam "I remain", but the Germanic languages like English had to borrow the word from Latin and the Romance languages, all of which evolved from Latin. We see the same root in mansion, manse, remain, and permanent—all borrowed. (We see that P. G. Beck was to the manner of words born, for 'twas P. G. who suggested today's very Good Word.)
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Re: MANOR

Postby Philip Hudson » Fri Mar 08, 2013 12:34 am

Hamlet was "to the manner born". I didn't do a controlled or scientific poll, but no one I have asked has known the difference between "to the manner born" and "to the manor born". Most had never noticed it.

I trust someone at headquarters will fix the double entry of the Good Word "manor".
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Re: MANOR

Postby MTC » Fri Mar 08, 2013 6:50 am

And speaking of manor, have the Goodwordians ever discussed the related subject of curtilage? One law school professor defined curtilage "as that portion of property that was within a bow shot (arrow) from the center of a manor estate." But perhaps you find the subject off target...

Well then, back to manor, just remember to separate manorialism from feudalism.

Manorialism
system of social ralations between seigneurs or lords and their dependent farm laborers, or serfs, in the middle ages (5th to 15th century.)

Feudalism
A hierarchical system in which a lord or king gives a gift or land (known in Latin as a feudum) to a vassal, i.e. a knight, in exchange for protection

(http://web.nickshanks.com/history/medieval/manor)

I'll leave you with this. Must diverge now...

P.S. And that reminds me, recommed you keep the double heading of manor as a parallel universe. Lots of possibilities there, quantum and otherwise.
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Re: MANOR

Postby LukeJavan8 » Fri Mar 08, 2013 2:34 pm

Visited many a manor on travels thru UK. Beautiful.
Castles too, Warwick, etc.
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Re: MANOR

Postby Slava » Mon Mar 11, 2013 11:54 pm

Well, I guess it falls to me to bring up what I would have thought was a natural tie-in.

Has anyone out there considered the idea of basic "manners"? Gee whiz, they come from the same root!
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Re: MANOR

Postby Philip Hudson » Tue Mar 12, 2013 2:32 am

Manner and manners are obviously related. Manor and manners are not. One might confuse manor with manner because Shakespeare wrote "to the manner born", and someone else wrote "to the manor born".
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Re: MANOR

Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:47 pm

But many assume those to the manor born exhibit better manners than the unwashed poebians.
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Re: MANOR

Postby Philip Hudson » Tue Mar 12, 2013 5:05 pm

But would you assume it? Have you seen the Brit sit-com "To the Manor Born"? It aired a long time ago and was about a conniving woman who had lost her manor on he husband's death. She was trying to get the new Manor owner, a non-English boor with no manners, to marry her.
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