- 1 Post By Raymott
Here's a poem I'd like to discuss. A Very Descript Man
There are some things I'm not sure about.
As I understand it, the author plays with words. S/he cuts negative prefixes off the words to make new words describing the man. Is that right?
I am sure of these:
eptly - ineptly
becilic - imbecilic
ane - inane
dain - disdain
cognito - incognito
nonchalance - chalance
digent - indigent
astrous - disastrous
They all follow one rule: to make an inexistent word out of an existent one.
There is a group of words that are formed in the same way, save that they actually exist:
dolent - indolent
kempt - unkempt
delible - indelible
dignation - indignation
My question is:
is it so that these words (dolent, kempt, delible, dignation) are much less used than their negative counterparts (not necessarily antonyms - 'dolent' is not an antonym of 'indolent') so the reader should get an impression of them following the above mention pattern? Is it possible that the author didn't know these words and thought they didn't exist? Please, try to treat these words separately.
Now, come the words 'pudent' - 'impudent'. I checked it the dictionary and to my surprise I didn't find it, but found 'pudency'. I think it should sound very natural to make 'pudent' out of 'pudency'. So again, is 'pudency' much harder to come across than 'impudent'?
'Vagance' is something I can't recognize. What is it made of?
Are there any other such pairs to be found in the verse?
EDIT: I forgot one important thing. Does the title follow this rule somehow? I can't think how. The word 'descript' means 'described' in my opinion simply.
EDIT 2: I've just noticed that there's also gusting - disgusting. I thought it was the participle from 'gust' before. Is span made this way too?
Last edited by mmasny; 06-Mar-2010 at 14:29.
Re: a poem
Re: a poem
Thanks, that explains it all.
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