OED appeals list

Fri Jun 21 03:22:45 UTC 2002

On further consideration, I think your point about "muggins" is well-taken.
As to "machinable," the distinction between "cut by machine tools" and "processed by machine" can be quite subtle.  In the 1920 case I quoted, this additional quote should give the necessary context:  "This is an action by the vendee in a written contract of sale, at prices therein stated, of 400,000 pounds of brass rods, of sizes and other qualities therein specified, to recover back the purchase price, $8,506.03, of 27,504 pounds thereof, which the vendee returned, because, as it claims, they were too hard to be cut and made into brass primers by automatic screw machines. The vendor defended on the ground that it was under no obligation to make the rods of such a degree of hardness that they could be so machined."
Alternatively, here's a 1928 quote:  "E. W. Bliss Company entered into a contract with the Santo Company, by which the latter agreed to machine-finish a large number of three-inch Russian shrapnel forgings. . . . In point of fact, out of 79,537 forgings delivered, and not rejected, the Santo Company actually in part machined 79,055. Its contention that the forgings were not machinable necessarily fails, in the face of the admitted fact that it did partially machine practically all of them. The final progress report made by the Santo Company to the Bliss Company discloses that the rougher portions of the machining were almost entirely completed by the Santo Company. It failed in performance only when it sought to perform the more delicate final operations on the forgings. It was apparently able to rough-turn and bore the forgings; it was unable to groove and finish-turn them satisfactorily."  In re People by Phillips, 222 A.D. 304, 226 N.Y.S. 175 (N.Y.A.D. 1928) , rev'd, 250 N.Y. 410, 165 N.E. 829 (1929).
John Baker

	-----Original Message----- 
	From: Jesse Sheidlower [mailto:jester at PANIX.COM] 
	Sent: Thu 6/20/2002 5:26 PM 
	Subject: Re: OED appeals list

	On Wed, Jun 19, 2002 at 03:53:12PM -0400, Baker, John wrote:
	> I noticed that the nominally updated appeal for "to give someone
	>one" (=sex) doesn't recognize my antedating to Gilbert & Sullivan's
	>Iolanthe ("I heard the minx remark, She'd meet him after dark Inside
	>St. James's Park And give him one").
	This antedating has been entered in OED, and the relevant entry will
	probably be published in next quarter's batch.
	>  "Machinable" (capable of being processed by machine) is now
	> antedated to 1957.  Here's an antedating to 1920: "while all the
	> 400,000 pounds of brass rods which the vendor delivered, except this
	> 27,504 pounds, were readily machined, this remnant was not thus
	> machinable."  Century Electric Co. v. Detroit Copper & Brass Rolling
	> Mills, 264 F. 49, 51 (8th Cir. 1920).
	Are you sure this doesn't mean 'capable of being cut by machine tools',
	which we have to 1917? I can't quite tell from the context, but it seems
	as though this is likely.
	> "Muggins" (card game) asks for any information.  Here's what appears
	>to be an 1881 cite, though it refers to dice rather than cards: "By
	>act approved March the 5th, 1881, and which takes effect ninety days
	>after adjournment, that body passed an amendment to articles 364 and
	>365 of the Penal Code, which amendment provides: 'If any person shall
	>bet or wager * * * money or anything of value * * * at any of the
	>following games, viz., poker dice, jack pot, high dice, low dice, low
	>die, dominoes, euchre with dominoes, poker with dominoes, sett with
	>dominoes, muggins, crack-loo, crack or loo, or at any game of any
	>character whatever which can be played with dice or dominoes, or on
	>any table, bank, or alley by whatsoever name the same may be known,
	>and without reference to how the same may be constructed or operated,
	>he shall be fined not less than ten dollars nor more than twenty-five
	>dollars; provided, no person shall be indicted under this section for
	>playing any of said games with dice or dominoes at a private
	>residence.'"  Whitney v. State, 10 Tex. App. 377
	>(Tex. Ct. App. 1881).
	Given that the word "muggins" in this passage follows several other
	forms of domino games, I'd be inclined to think that this is OED2's
	_muggins_ 2.b. 'a game of dominoes in which players count by
	(multiples of) five', which is attested to 1868.
	Jesse Sheidlower

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