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EXPATIATE

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EXPATIATE

Postby Dr. Goodword » Wed Jul 20, 2005 10:36 pm

• expatiate •

Pronunciation: ek-spey-shi-eyt • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Verb, intransitive

Meaning: 1. To meander, to wander about freely without any particular destination. 2. To write or speak meanderingly, without focus or coming to a point.

Notes: This ordinary Latin borrowing lives with a large, happy family. The process noun is expatiation and the agent noun is expatiator. The adjective is expatiative, which sets up the adverb, expatiatively. Remember that English dropped the redundant [s] after ex- that was kept in Latin (see Word History).

In Play: Use this word to refer to anyone who has trouble sticking to the topic of conversation: "Too bad you’re late; you missed Maude Lynn expatiating on her grandchildren again." However, the original meaning is still there, waiting to spice up your vocabulary and conversations: "I love to walk along the country roads behind my house but I can only truly expatiate when I leave the road and explore the fields and forests."

Word History: Today’s Good Word comes from Latin usurpare "to use illegally" from usus "use" + rapere "to seize." Rap-ere derives from the earlier Proto-Indo-European root, reup- "seize, snatch, grasp". In the Germanic languages this same stem became raubo- "booty (siezed property)" and, finally, German rauben "rob" and English rob itself. An interesting sidenote: somewhere along the way the Germanic root was borrowed by the French, where it came to refer to any kind of clothing, stolen or not. The French word was then borrowed back into English as our word robe, a particular kind of dress.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Wed Jul 20, 2005 10:43 pm

I tried expaciar in Portuguese, but didn't find anything, so I gave up on the others.

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Postby tcward » Wed Jul 20, 2005 11:05 pm

Rap-ere derives from the earlier Proto-Indo-European root, reup- "seize, snatch, grasp".


Surely this is also the source of English reap...?

Dude, in Spanish it's espaciar... I think.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Wed Jul 20, 2005 11:18 pm

Yes, but Spanish espaciar and Portuguese espaçar/espacejar/espacear mean different things. Or at least I think. Good going, though.

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Re: EXPATIATE

Postby M. Henri Day » Thu Jul 21, 2005 9:00 am

Dr. Goodword wrote: ...

Word History: Today’s Good Word comes from Latin usurpare "to use illegally" from usus "use" + rapere "to seize."


Either I'm sadly misinformed, or our esteemed doctor, like Homeros, also nods from time to time. The origins of «expatiate» are, as AHD informs us, to be found in :
[Latin expatiârî, expatiât- : ex-, ex- + spatiârî, to spread (from spatium, space).]


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曾记否,到中流击水,浪遏飞舟?
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Postby Brazilian dude » Thu Jul 21, 2005 11:06 am

Now that makes sense. Tim and I had mentioned epaciar, espacear, espacejar, and espacejar, by the way, so we weren't too far off.

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Postby tcward » Thu Jul 21, 2005 12:05 pm

Henri... I think you uncovered the secret. Dr Goodword put the wrong 'Word History' section in this when he put it all together.

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Postby anders » Thu Jul 21, 2005 1:59 pm

From the doctors around, I find that Wyld: The Universal Dictionary of the English Language as well agrees with Ph.D. M. H. Day.
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Postby M. Henri Day » Thu Jul 21, 2005 2:33 pm

Tim, I was really struck by your new motto (or tagline or whatever it's called), which could be used to define - or at least exemplify - the word «hubris»....

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Postby Stargzer » Thu Jul 21, 2005 11:17 pm

tcward wrote:Henri... I think you uncovered the secret. Dr Goodword put the wrong 'Word History' section in this when he put it all together.

Doc?


Looks like he heard you and corrected it on the site:

Word History: The original sense of this Good Word is to go outside your space or off course. We borrowed it from Latin exspatiare "to wander, digress" from ex- "out of" + spatium "space, course" + are, a verbal suffix. Spatium is related to German spannen "to stretch, to span". The same stem turns up in Greek span- "to stretch" and, if you stretch things too far, it leads to Greek spanis "want, need". This sense turns up in another related Latin word without the fickle S, that comes and goes under mysterious circumstances in front of this word. The Latin word is penuria "lack of, scarcity", the source of our word, penury "poverty, destitution".
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