Marc Velasco marcjvelasco at GMAIL.COM
Tue Oct 21 03:53:09 UTC 2008

How was it used when Stephen King wrote the book?

On Mon, Oct 20, 2008 at 7:42 PM, Joel S. Berson <Berson at att.net> wrote:

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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      "Needful"?
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> In a book published in 1891 (1st ed. 1871), the author writes of the
> central section of Boston in the early 17th century, that in that
> area "dwelt the notables of the town,---the governor, the elder of
> the church, the captain of the artillery company, and the most
> needful of the craftsmen and artificers of the humble plantation; and
> at a short distance from it were the meeting-house, the market-house,
> the town-house, the school-house, and the ever-flowing spring of pure
> water."
> Am I right in understanding "needful" here as adj.1, sense 1,
> "Requisite, necessary, indispensable, essential." -- that is, where
> one today might say "needed, necessary, essential" -- rather than
> sense 2, "Of a person: poor, needy; lacking the necessities of life."?
> Joel
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