reveal, n.

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Thu Nov 10 01:18:33 UTC 2011

Yes. "The reveal" was disseminated to millions in that magician movie
a few years ago. You know the one I mean. The one whose title I can't

Ah! "The Prestige" (2006).

But that kind of "reveal" is done *by* somebody. The archaeologist's
"reveal" shows or reveals *itself*.


On Wed, Nov 9, 2011 at 8:08 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at> wrote:
> On Wed, Nov 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM, Garson O'Toole
> <adsgarsonotoole at> wrote:
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       Garson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
>> Subject:      Re: reveal, n.
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> Jonathan Lighter wrote:
>>>> English archaeologist on a National Geographic Channel show about the
>>>> recently uncovered Anglo-Saxon gold hoard:
>>>> "When you're working on [cleaning] an object, it's amazing when you
>>>> get the reveal."
>>>> I.e., "the first clear sight of something that is being
>>>> microscopically cleaned of debris."
>> Arnold Zwicky wrote:
>>> section 2 of:
>> I have heard and read the term "the reveal" associated with stagecraft
>> and magic. The archaeologist may be suggesting that the new view of
>> the cleaned object is extraordinary and has a magic quality.
>> Below is a GB example that is probably from 1964 from the world of
>> public relations.
>> The Reporter: Volume 31
>> Max Ascoli - 1964
>> (Date probes show that this volume contains a September 24, 1964
>> issue. The GB date is probably close.)
>> [Being excerpt]
>> At the climax, scenery and singers melted away and there — swathed in
>> lights on a revolving stage — stood the 1964 Oldsmobile. The magic
>> moment, as essential to auto shows as horses are to Westerns, is known
>> in the trade as the "reveal." Properly done, it can make even the most
>> cynical pedestrian weep.
>> [End excerpt]
>> Magicians use the term "the reveal" when describing tricks or
>> illusions I think. Maybe Bill Mullins knows more about this use.
>> Garson
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> The American Dialect Society -
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

The American Dialect Society -

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