Re: "Usefull languages"
|From:||John Cowan <cowan@...>|
|Date:||Sunday, February 17, 2002, 3:39|
Padraic Brown scripsit:
> Then I guess you really can't say the cooperative sort is the
> "normal" meaning...
Well, in most constructions involving "bee" it is cooperative.
The fact that most of the *actions* so named are infrequent nowadays
means the terms are rarely used. The word "amphora" is not obsolete,
but it is rarely used simply because we do not make amphorae any more
and so don't need the word much; nonetheless, when we do talk about
them, it is the correct and current word.
> And for what it's worth, quilting bees will always be with us
> so long as interested ladies (most usually) are willing to
> knock together something nice for the church bazaar's auction
> or raffle.
Good point. m-w.com defines "bee" in this sense as an assembly
of people for a particular purpose", and refers its etymology
to an English dialect form "been" < ME bene 'blessing, help'.
I think rather of the cooperative activity of bees (the insects).
There is a separate m-w.com definition of "spelling bee", along
the lines I gave earlier.
> What other things do you know of can be done by bees, apart
> from quilting and houseraising?
John Cowan http://www.ccil.org/~cowan firstname.lastname@example.org
To say that Bilbo's breath was taken away is no description at all. There
are no words left to express his staggerment, since Men changed the language
that they learned of elves in the days when all the world was wonderful.