[Ads-l] Amelioration of "notoriety"

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Fri Sep 23 21:40:40 EDT 2016

Here is an instance of "notoriety" in 1938 that I believe has a
positive denotation. Of course, this use may have been uncommon.

Date: March 29, 1938
Newspaper: Daily News Standard (The Evening Standard)
Newspaper Location: Uniontown, Pennsylvania
Article: Carmichaels Cadet Drum and Bugle Corps To Celebrate Anniversary
Author: William Deems
Quote Page 3, Column 4
Database: Newspapers.com

The word "Firemen's" was misspelled "Fiermen's". Also, "arrangements"
was misspelled "arangements".


[Begin excerpt]
During the year 1938, the corps made great progress, appearing at the
State Legion convention at Johnstown, only to be disqualified for a
prize because their white duck trousers were not considered part of a
uniform; and at Connellsville where they appeared in the State
Volunteer Fiermen's convention winning much notoriety and acclaim with
their intricate drills and musical arangements.
[End excerpt]


On Fri, Sep 23, 2016 at 1:30 PM, Marisa Brook
<marisa.brook at mail.utoronto.ca> wrote:
> Michigan State lost a beloved alumnus recently at the age of 24 and the campus store has been handing out copies of his obituary.<http://obits.mlive.com/obituaries/grandrapids/obituary.aspx?pid=180805567> After three graceful, glowing paragraphs describing the young man's accomplishments and family, the fourth paragraph begins as follows:
> "Sadler gained notoriety for influencing others through communication."
> After that, we get a description of his reportedly well-liked social media presence, which is said to have involved "humor, wit, and philosophy".
> Seems to be a use of the word to mean 'popularity' (or at least 'considerable attention') - in a non-facetious obituary in a medium where the words were likely to have been carefully chosen. I'm intrigued. Has anyone else noticed cases of this?
> ***************************
> Marisa Brook
> Assistant Professor
> Department of Linguistics & Germanic, Slavic, Asian and African Languages
> Michigan State University
> East Lansing, Michigan 48824-1027 USA
> http://linglang.msu.edu/people/faculty/marisa-brook/
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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

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