[Ads-l] Correction: [ADS-L] "horse-doctor" in the OED

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Sat Jan 31 16:32:21 UTC 2015


Correction:  After "Bible", there should be a ? not a >
JSB

At 1/31/2015 11:12 AM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>I suspect that half of the quotations for "horse-doctor" are not 
>"one who treats the diseases of horses" but rather "an itinerant 
>quack who promotes his wares and cures from horseback" (the better 
>to make a quick getaway, of course).
>
>Specifically, in the 1723 quotation he is amidst other showmen:
>
>1723   London Gaz. No. 6139/3   Rope Dancers, Horse-Doctors, Poppet-Shewers.
>
>I am suspicious of two other quotations, although more context is needed:
>
>1810   M. L. Weems Let. in Ford's M. L. Weems: Wks & Ways (1929) 
>III. 11   A collection in which there is not a single Bible..nor 
>Dream-book, nor Horse Doctors.
>
>Are horse-doctors not to be believed, just as a dream-book ("a book 
>containing interpretations of dreams") -- or a Bible> -- is not?
>
>1930   T. S. Eliot tr. 'St.-J. Perse' Anabasis 65   The vast court 
>of the horse-doctor.
>
>Does a doctor who treats horses have a court (an audience?), or 
>merely a stable?
>
>-----
>
>In the sense I propose, there is an antedating of the 1723 quotation:
>
>c1713  Pharmacopola Circumferaneus, or The Horse Doctor's Harangue 
>to the Credulous Mob.  Title, broadside, Library of Congress (Call 
>no. PC 2 -- Pharmacopola circumforaneus) or Wellcome Library (image 
>No. 575019i).  (Malcolm Jones or I can provide the evidence on which 
>this date is based.)
>
>Joel
>------------------------------------------------------------
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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


More information about the Ads-l mailing list