Use this forum to suggest Good Words for Professor Beard.
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Postby tcward » Thu Aug 04, 2005 9:55 pm

I was reminded of this word whilst reading an article in Car & Driver, about the new Alfa Romeo 159 Q4, wherein the author was praising the alacrity and quality of the successor to the 156.


c.1510, from L. alacritatem (nom. alacritas) "liveliness," from alacer (gen. alacris) "cheerful, brisk, lively;" cognate with Goth. aljan "zeal," O.E. ellen, O.H.G. ellian.

Obviously related to the Italian musical term allegro... But I thought from the looks of the O.E. relative ellen that it would also be related to French élan -- but no!

1877, from Fr. élan, from élancer "to rush, dart," from O.Fr. elancer, from e- "out" + lancer "to throw a lance," from L.L. lanceare, from L. lancea "lance."

So no relation to alacrity. Oh well.

But alacrity is still an interesting word.


M. Henri Day
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Postby M. Henri Day » Fri Sep 16, 2005 2:58 pm

Or the alacrity with which we all hop on each other's perceived errors - but that is, indeed, a part of this forum's raison d'être and done all in good fun - pop goes the weasle !...


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