OED "circumstance," 7b

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Sat Mar 3 01:44:40 UTC 2007

Cited from 1586-1676, defined as "Importance, moment (of any matter). Obs."

   Yet it (or something awfully close to it) possibly remains current:

  1967 in Bill Frey _Letters from 'Nam_ (N.Y.: Warner, 1992) 35: My Bronze Star was denied yesterday, lack of circumstance, I didn't do enough in other words. I thanked the Sergeant that put me in for it.

  Conceivably, however, "circumstance" in this official context means def. 6, "circumstantiality of detail" (in the recommendation) and both Frey and his sergeant misunderstood the sense.  Occamites may prefer this interpretation, but we don't know enough to be certain.


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