Ductile

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Dr. Goodword
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Ductile

Postby Dr. Goodword » Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:56 pm

• ductile •


Pronunciation: dêk-tail • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Adjective

Meaning: 1. Easily extruded or pounded into a specific shape. 2. Malleable, pliable, easily shaped. 3. Easily influenced or persuaded, pliable, suggestible.

Notes: This Good Word supports an adverb, ductilely and a handsome noun, ductility. A variant of it, ductible, is floating around, but we recommend you avoid it. It probably arose as a result of the confusion of ductile with deductible.

In Play: Originally, this word applied to metals and other soft, pliable materials that can be "led" into shape (see the History): "Ella Kopter discovered the hard way that her SUV is more ductile than a telephone pole." (Ella's OK, by the way. A few cuts and bruises.) But the more interesting use for this word is to indicate the ease with which you can adjust someone's mind, "Palmer is so ductile, we actually convinced him to check the stores downtown for a No. 7 shelf stretcher."

Word History: Today's soft word descended from Middle English ductil, nicked from Old French, which inherited it from Latin ductilis, an adjective from ductus, the past participle of ducere "to lead". The original root was PIE deuk- "to lead", which came into Old Germanic as teuhan, the father of German ziehen "to draw, pull". In Old English it appeared as togian "to draw, drag", on its way to becoming today's tug. But Old English also had another form, tiegan "to bind (draw tight)", which went on to become tie, while its past participle remained as tight "drawn securely". Of course, English borrowed many Latin words with this root, including duke (originally a leader), duct (which leads or conducts air from place to place), and educate. The last word came from Latin educare "to lead out, bring up" e(x) "out (of) + ducere "to lead", a kind of leading out into the world.
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George Kovac
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Re: Ductile

Postby George Kovac » Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:51 am

"The messy layers of human experience get pulled together, and sometimes ordered, by words." Colum McCann, But Always Meeting Ourselves, NYT 6/15/09

damoge
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Re: Ductile

Postby damoge » Thu Oct 10, 2019 10:28 am

George, were you hacked?
If there is a correlation here, I'm at a loss to spot it.
Everything works out, one way or another

George Kovac
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Re: Ductile

Postby George Kovac » Thu Oct 10, 2019 10:59 am

Not hacked. The link I posted is legit. The image is an execrable and jejune (but cute?) visual pun based on today's good word. :roll:
"The messy layers of human experience get pulled together, and sometimes ordered, by words." Colum McCann, But Always Meeting Ourselves, NYT 6/15/09

Philip Hudson
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Re: Ductile

Postby Philip Hudson » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:10 am

And so it is George. I didn't catch it at first blush. Then I caught it. :lol:
It is dark at night, but the Sun will come up and then we can see.

damoge
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Re: Ductile

Postby damoge » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:05 pm

apologies, all. As soon as I read your response, I understood what it must be without even going back to look.
and dawn comes (slowly) over Marblehead... (so says the native of Massachusetts)
Everything works out, one way or another


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