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Gruesome

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Gruesome

Postby Dr. Goodword » Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:19 pm

• gruesome •


Pronunciation: gru-sêm • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Adjective

Meaning: Grisly, ghastly, repugnant, inspiring repulsion.

Notes: English has a lot of words for "stupid person" (jerk, blockhead, klutz, etc.) and for "terrible" (terrible, horrible, grisly, ghastly, gruesome, etc.) There are also a lot of derogatory terms for women. Why these three concepts deserve such attention is anyone's guess. The adverb for today's word is gruesomely and the noun, gruesomeness.

In Play: Gruesome means "horrible" in a nauseatingly repulsive way: "I drove past a fatal car accident on the way to work this morning, and the mangled bodies were a gruesome sight." However, today's Good Word is most often used hyperbolically: "Did you hear what happened when Smedley went in to ask for a raise? It was gruesome!"

Word History: Gruesome comes from Scottish grue "to shudder from horror", made popular by Robert Louis Stevenson. Middle English did have gruen, a word that does not appear in the written records of Old English, leaving the question of whether it was present in the spoken language moot. The common wisdom is that the word may have been borrowed by Middle English from Middle Dutch grusaem "horrible" or Middle High German gruwesam, Modern German grausam "horrible, fierce, cruel". Danish grusom "cruel" from grue "to dread" is clearly related. How it came to be in the Germanic languages no one seems to know. No trace of it can be found in other Indo-European languages. (The gruesome truth is, Robert Eichberg suggested this word just past last Halloween. We need to thank him for the suggestion and for his patience.)
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Re: Gruesome

Postby MTC » Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:22 am

gruesome-twosome definition
[ˈgrusəmˈtusəm]
n.
two people or things. (Jocular. Neither the things nor the people have to be gruesome.) : Well, it's the gruesome-twosome. Come in and join the party.
Last edited by MTC on Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gruesome

Postby Slava » Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:28 am

A bloody good word, in keeping with the season. 8)
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Re: Gruesome

Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:56 am

Hope this comes through. I just received it and
then saw Doc's word for the day:

http://www.liveleak.com/ll_embed?f=24113d89dfd8
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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Re: Gruesome

Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Oct 29, 2013 3:25 pm

I had a similar sling when I was a kid. The rubber looked the same, but the forked stick, tho heavy, had no guards. My hand occasionally got popped, but it was survivable. I remember it could propel a rock of similar size to the ball bearings over a sixty foot tree in my backyard. This guy needed a helmet!
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Re: Gruesome

Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:10 pm

Certainly not the type used in Israel/Palestine today, and
employed by David in the Goliath incident. I watched
kids there knock cans and bottles off walls yards and yards
distant with their swinging type.
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Re: Gruesome

Postby MTC » Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:26 pm

Do you see in the film a fable about 20th century man's invention of the atomic bomb?
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Re: Gruesome

Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:04 pm

I think this is true, and a few other fables of similar
content as well.
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Re: Gruesome

Postby Philip Hudson » Thu Oct 31, 2013 3:15 am

The weapon that propels a projectile with a large rubber band is definitely not a slingshot. One might call it an elastic catapult. When I was a boy we made them that would throw a baseball thirty of forty yards. They were not hand held but were mounted to a base that was placed on the ground. One or two boys held the base steady while another hurled the missile from an inner tube. (Some of you might be too young to remember inner tubes.) It was a dangerous weapon. We never used it in combat. It was difficult to aim
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Re: Gruesome

Postby call_copse » Thu Oct 31, 2013 7:46 am

That was truly gruesome Luke. Still feeling queasy (there's a good word).

@Philip
I always thought a slingshot only described the weapon where you whirled a missile in a pouch on two lines, releasing one of the lines securing it to send the projectile on its flight. This is the traditional David / Goliath weapon to my mind. However it seems that slingshot is indeed used interchangeably with catapult from a quick web search.

Strangely I've always - seemingly incorrectly - spelt catapult 'catapault'.
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Re: Gruesome

Postby LukeJavan8 » Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:14 pm

Pictured are the slings I encountered and purchased
in Israel for showing when teaching. They are the
swing variety. I saw kids knock small rocks off walls
yards away with larger rocks swung from these types:

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=sli ... &FORM=IGRE
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Re: Gruesome

Postby Perry Lassiter » Thu Oct 31, 2013 5:39 pm

In the South of my youth, the things were called n***** shooters, later as we became more socially conscious we renamed them sling shots.
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