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Re: alas, those monkeys are not blue

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Monday, November 26, 2001, 7:52
En réponse à Anton Sherwood <bronto@...>:

> Elliott Lash wrote: > > Old French had 'las' /las/ also I think it had 'hé' /he/ > > and then they were just fused together. > > American Heritage Dictionary says `ah' + > <las> `wretched' from Latin <lassus> `weary'. > > OF <hé las> could mean `o wretched one'. >
Strangely enough, that doesn't seem to be the case. The modern sense of French 'hélas': unfortunately seems recent (well, at least it seems to date from after the 17th century). With some evidence like theater plays it seemed first to have had a positive meaning, some kind of interjection that expresses great surprise and hapiness. Christophe. Take your life as a movie: do not let anybody else play the leading role.