"ultrajectine", 1730, not in OED

Douglas G. Wilson douglas at NB.NET
Mon Jun 25 21:03:10 UTC 2012

On 6/25/2012 4:02 PM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      "ultrajectine", 1730, not in OED
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> I have no idea what this means,* if it's a real English word, whether
> it's derived from Latin and what it might have meant there, or is a
> mistake -- but it's not in the OED.
> "And I cannot but think it no Small Reflection on our Ultrajectine
> Doctor; that he knows what the Porters say; it looks as if he were
> acquainted with them."
> [Samuel Mather].  "A Letter to Doctor Zabdiel Boylston; Occasion'd by
> a late Dissertation concerning Inoculation."  Boston: Printed for D.
> Henchman, 1730.  Page 11.  ECCO, EAI.
> Mather's "Letter" rebukes Dr. William Douglass for his criticism of
> Boylston and Cotton Mather.  Douglass had accused them of being
> credulous, taking accounts of successful inoculation from African
> slaves, which were no more believable than if they had taken
> information from porters at the docks.  So Mather is aspersing
> Douglass as no better than a porter himself.
> * Unless it's related to "jactant", boastful.  Which would
> fit.  Douglass was characterized as arrogant, disdainful of those
> with less education than he.  (Like the Scarecrow after his
> commencement, he had a degree -- an MD from Edinburgh.  And Boylston did not.)

I think "ultrajectine" refers to Utrecht (Latin "Ultrajectum"). It can
refer to a certain religious group (like "Jansenist"; there is a
Wikipedia page), and therefore it might could have been used
metaphorically at the time, perhaps with the meaning "heretical/schismatic".

However I note that (per Wikipedia) Douglass received his MD in Utrecht.
This may account alone for the appellation, or there may be a

I own myself thoroughly ignorant of religious history in general.

-- Doug Wilson

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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