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FARCE

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FARCE

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sat Sep 15, 2012 11:27 pm

• farce •


Pronunciation: fahrs • Hear it!

Part of Speech: fahrs

Meaning: 1. Stuffing, filling, force-meat. 2. An exaggerated parody of base humor, an artistic work with no redeeming social value that usually resorts to slapstick humor.

Notes: Today's noun may be used as a verb in its first sense, as to farce a turkey before baking it. In the second sense there is an adjective farcical, an adverb farcically, and a noun farcicality, that expresses the quality of a literary farce.

In Play: Today's word has two meanings that love to play together: "The turkey was a hit at dinner but the Brussels sprouts stuffed with grape jelly were a farced culinary farce!" Some might think farcical the new culinary craze in the US, a turducken, a turkey farced with a duck farced with a chicken. Others just love it.

Word History: Today's word was inherited from Middle English farse "stuffing," borrowed from Old French farce "stuffing, interlude". The French inherited this word from Latin farcire "to stuff, cram, fill up." How did "stuffing" get to "crude comedy?" In medieval France and England, actors in the religious dramas were wont to add impromptu lines called farcias to pad out the plays they performed. With time this dramatic "stuffing" became more and more humorous and, the more humorous, the more popular. Finally, as drama secularized, the farces took on a life of their own. (Let us hope that our old friend Mary Beltran keeps stuffing our mailbox with spicy lexical delicacies like today's word.)
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Re: FARCE

Postby Perry Lassiter » Sat Sep 15, 2012 11:35 pm

Odd that I keep learning stuff about words on this site. Had no idea farce had that first meaning. My son-in-law was early in the turducken craze as he knew the inventor of that farce while he was in an Atlanta chef school. Does one have to force the first farcicle farce?
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Re: FARCE

Postby Slava » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:37 am

Perry Lassiter wrote:Odd that I keep learning stuff about words on this site. Had no idea farce had that first meaning. My son-in-law was early in the turducken craze as he knew the inventor of that farce while he was in an Atlanta chef school. Does one have to force the first farcicle farce?
Odd? Why? Is not the learning of stuff about words the whole meaning of this site?

As to your penultimate word, is that a dripping formation of frozen water at the edge of you eave? A nice portmanteau, if so.
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Re: FARCE

Postby MTC » Sun Sep 16, 2012 9:23 am

Interesting, isn't it, how Perry used the word "stuff" when commenting on "farce," a word that means "stuff?" You can almost see the nerves branch out in neon. (Don't be alarmed. It's only a figure of speech!)

Be that as it may, "farce" has another form:

far·ceur (fär-sr)
n.
1. One who acts in or writes a farce.
2. A comic; a wag.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[French, from Old French, from farcer, to joke, from farce, farce; see farce.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

As for Perry's clever creation "farcicle," he may have intended the sound-alike adjective, "farcical;"

far·ci·cal (färs-kl)
adj.
1. Of or relating to farce.
2.
a. Resembling a farce; ludicrous.
b. Ridiculously clumsy; absurd.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

farci·cali·ty (-kl-t), farci·cal·ness n.
farci·cal·ly adv.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

But that's how great discoveries are made, isn't it? By accident.
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Re: FARCE

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:39 pm

But that's how great discoveries are made, isn't it? By accident.

sometimes based on scientific theory, sometimes not.
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Re: FARCE

Postby Slava » Sun Sep 16, 2012 7:18 pm

MTC wrote:Interesting, isn't it, how Perry used the word "stuff" when commenting on "farce," a word that means "stuff?" You can almost see the nerves branch out in neon. (Don't be alarmed. It's only a figure of speech!)
Good catch. I missed that one.

As for Perry's clever creation "farcicle," he may have intended the sound-alike adjective, "farcical;"
I did get this one. I was just picking a nit and busting chops a bit. :)
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