Judy Prince jbalizsprince at GOOGLEMAIL.COM
Wed Feb 10 17:09:05 UTC 2010

Keep being dangerous, then, Amy---I'm gaining a course in fascinating
esoterica every time you post here.

Thank you!  [And that Jonathon Lighter ain't bad, either]  ;-)


On 10 February 2010 06:32, Amy West <medievalist at w-sts.com> wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Amy West <medievalist at W-STS.COM>
> Subject:      Re: ffolliott
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Our understandings of so many medieval things has changed so much
> since the 1800s that many of their conclusions are suspect. Beowulf
> was earlier read as history, for example. And there are
> misinterpretations of physical objects -- the terms "chain mail,"
> "ring mail," "scale mail," and "plate mail" are all constructs from
> that period that don't relate to the actual objects (mail is often
> constructed as a mesh, not as a series of chains; mail is only made
> from rings so "ring mail" is redundant and "scale mail" and "plate
> mail" are contradictions).
> More to the topic at hand, that's a very interesting transcription
> example. I wonder if what is going on is an attempt to distinguish
> initial f from long-s. In MSs long-s was usually used only internally
> and terminally, but I've seen it used initially in two printed
> fencing manuals from the late 1700s (Angelo and Lonnergan). I wonder
> if the 1800s transcriptions are trying to respond to the confusion.
> Again, as David Wilton put it, as with so many topics, I know just
> enough to be dangerous.
> >Date:    Tue, 9 Feb 2010 20:53:58 -0500
> >From:    "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> >Subject: Re: ffolliott
> >
> >I don't know about medieval, but I would tend to trust a "keeper of
> >the manuscript department of the British Museum".  While admittedly
> >the claim is a century old (1893), it still is long enough after
> >medievality to think that she had the data.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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