to spew

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Sun Apr 20 19:34:42 UTC 2014

At 4/20/2014 09:01 AM, Jonathan Lighter wrote:

>"_trans._ To say or write abusively or unfairly."
>Not in OED.
>Looks like it should be "2d. "

Why isn't this subsumed under 2.c., "Freq. in
fig. use with reference to abusive or
objectionable language."?    Spewing vs. orating
may be in the ear of the auditor; presumably
Croutier found Mansel's words about Wilkie
Collins's writings objectionable.  There are some fun quotations under 2.c:

1632   W. Lithgow Totall Disc. Trav. x. 472   My
sonne, beholde you deserue to be burnt quicke..:
Spewing forth also this Fæminine Latine [etc.].
1718   T. Gordon Dedic. to Great Man 20   Why
must prating for ever suffer'd, without
Rebuke, to be spewing up their ill-scented
Crudities in the Faces of Men that are either Wise or Brave?

Is speaking "Fæminine Latine [etc.]" any more
bilious than criticizing worthless sensationalist fiction?


>2009 A. L. Croutier, "Introduction" to Wilkie Collins _The Moonstone_
>(N.Y.: Signet) x: The philosopher H. L. Mansel spewed that this sort of
>literature aims at creating excitement alone to satisfy the cravings of a
>diseased appetite: "No divine influence can be imagined as presiding over
>the birth of Wilkie's work. No more immortality is dreamed of for it than
>for the fashions of the current season. A commercial atmosphere floats
>around works of this class, redolent of the manufactory."
>Really "spewing," wasn't he? (Wait, don't tell me. It sounds normal to
>everyone but me.)
>The distinguished Alev Lytle Croutier (b. 1945) is a former Guggenheim
>Fellow whose work has been translated into 22 languages.
>PS: The direct quotation from Mansel is slightly but embarrassingly
>inaccurate - as suggested by the chummy reference to Wilkie Collins as
>"Wilkie." In fact, Mansel (Quarterly Review, Apr. 1863, p. 483), writing
>anonymously, is describing the "sensation-novel" as a genre rather than
>singling out Collins for criticism.
>"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
>The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

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