Pumpernickel (1766)

James McIntosh jemcinto at IDIRECT.CA
Fri May 3 22:53:47 UTC 2002

At 01:25 PM 5/3/02 -0400, you wrote:

>In a message dated Thu, 2 May 2002 11:37:33 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
Benjamin Fortson <fortson at FAS.HARVARD.EDU> writes:
>>"Modestry"? Typo, or for real? Fifteen hits on Altavista...

>Typo.  I checked your fifteen hits, and they all seem to be typoes.  Two
were on "Modestry Blaise", which I assume is actually "Modestry Braise", a
Japanese liberated-woman heroine, who appears on video games by Nintendro
and in animre cartoons aimed at young males who are too "blase" to be
interested in yet another martial-arts male hero.  The name "Braise" is not
a piece of dialect comedy, but rather the result of an English orthography
pitfall---the Japanese were unable to recognize that "Blaise" was a homonym
of "blaze" and so they went for "braise" as in "steak", giving a mental
picture of our heroine quietly being cooked for dinner.

Complicating things, there used to be a TV show with Modesty Blaise (or
Blase) as the heroine.

The name was intended as a pun or oxymoron, or similar.

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