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guerdon

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guerdon

Postby sardith » Wed May 25, 2011 11:27 pm

Dr. Goodword,

I was reading the poem, 'Prospice', by Robert Browning, and would like to know about this word I saw: guerdon. I know it means: reward or recompense, but it sounds so much more noble, don't you think?

From 'Prospice':

Where he stands, the Arch Fear in a visible form,
Yet the strong man must go:
For the journey is done and the summit attained,
And the barriers fall,
Though a battle's to fight ere the guerdon be gained,
The reward of it all.
I was ever a fighter, so—one fight more,
The best and the last!
I would hate that death bandaged my eyes and forbore,
And bade me creep past.

Sure would like to see all about it in your column one day!

Sardith :)
“The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.”
~Mark Twain, [pen name for Samuel Clemens], American author and humorist, (1835-1910)~
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Postby Slava » Mon Jun 13, 2011 7:52 pm

Interesting word. At first I tried pronouncing it along the lines of how it's spelled. Then I found out I was wrong.

Gird-en.

It strikes me as if it should be related to gird, as in one's loins, but it isn't.

I like your Twain quote signature, by the way.
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guerdon

Postby sardith » Sat Jun 18, 2011 3:32 pm

Thanks, Slava.

Twain was an irrepressible wit; one of my favorites. 8)

Sardith :D
“The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.”
~Mark Twain, [pen name for Samuel Clemens], American author and humorist, (1835-1910)~
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Postby Slava » Sat Jun 18, 2011 3:36 pm

I just finished a crossword puzzle that had a fun theme, inspired by Bette Midler's nickname. The long clues "Miss M" in the answers. So, "Any of the pairs traveling with Noah" was arktwain. All in all, a fun one.
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guerdon

Postby Audiendus » Fri Oct 07, 2011 7:31 am

I was unfamiliar with the word "guerdon".

Slava wrote:It strikes me as if it should be related to gird, as in one's loins, but it isn't.

One might also think that guerdon is etymologically related to reward, but again, it isn't.

It also makes me think (misleadingly) of the word bourdon, a low-pitched, drone-like musical note or device.
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Fri Oct 07, 2011 12:46 pm

No one did the definition and etymology on guerdon, so you made me look it up, which is a good thing. The "g u e r" made me think of guerilla we recently commented on. By the way, bourdon is an organ pipe or voice, usually a 16' one, often among the pedal stops.
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