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  1. #1
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Saturday Night Fever

    What does the sentence mean?

    At Abbots Bromley in Stafforshire they have a "Horn Dance" in which the whole village dresses up in medieval costume for a kind of pagan "Saturday Night Fever".


    By the way, why is the word "costume" used in singular (not plural), in the sentence?

  2. #2
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: Saturday Night Fever

    "Saturday Night Fever" was the film that launched John Travolta's career; it was about a young man who lived for his weekly night out dancing.

    On your second point, either is possible. The singular suggests more of a general theme, whereas the plural suggests a range of more specific costumes - one man came in a medieval peasant's costume, one came in a medieval knight's costume, one came in a medieval nobleman's costume, and so on.

    b

  3. #3
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Saturday Night Fever

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    "Saturday Night Fever" was the film that launched John Travolta's career; it was about a young man who lived for his weekly night out dancing.

    On your second point, either is possible. The singular suggests more of a general theme, whereas the plural suggests a range of more specific costumes - one man came in a medieval peasant's costume, one came in a medieval knight's costume, one came in a medieval nobleman's costume, and so on.

    b
    Thank you, Bob.

    Anyway, I still don't understand the red coloured collocation.
    A pagan is someone who doesn't believe in God, he/she may believe in some gods, but doesn't worship the God, is that right?

    What does Saturday Night Fever have in common with a pagan??

    At Abbots Bromley in Stafforshire they have a "Horn Dance" in which the whole village dresses up in medieval costume for a kind of pagan "Saturday Night Fever".

  4. #4
    BobK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saturday Night Fever

    Quote Originally Posted by Lenka View Post
    ...the whole village dresses up in medieval costume for a kind of pagan "Saturday Night Fever".[/I]
    I don't feel I should make much of an effort to defend something that seems to me just plain bad writing But here goes:

    Before Christianity came to the British Isles, there were various pagan beliefs, often to do with sex, fertility, rejuvenation and so on. Their rites were flamboyant and colourful - which made them difficult to replace with Christianity. The way a compromise was reached was that the cycle of Christian festivals was made to accommodate the pagan ones. There was already a pagan Winter Solstice festival towards the end of December, so it morphed into Christmas. But Christmas festivities nowadays, while not honouring any pagan belief, are rich in the flamboyance and colour of the original pagan feast.

    I think the sentence that's bothering you is using pagan to refer to flamboyance and colourfulness. But I think it ("pagan") is poorly chosen in this passage, because pagan festivities and sex-oriented dancing have a lot in common: "Saturday Night Fever" is, in that sense, already "pagan". The writer is showing off - using "a sort of pagan" to suggest an analysis that just doesn't hold water.

    b

  5. #5
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Saturday Night Fever

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    I don't feel I should make much of an effort to defend something that seems to me just plain bad writing But here goes:

    Before Christianity came to the British Isles, there were various pagan beliefs, often to do with sex, fertility, rejuvenation and so on. Their rites were flamboyant and colourful - which made them difficult to replace with Christianity. The way a compromise was reached was that the cycle of Christian festivals was made to accommodate the pagan ones. There was already a pagan Winter Solstice festival towards the end of December, so it morphed into Christmas. But Christmas festivities nowadays, while not honouring any pagan belief, are rich in the flamboyance and colour of the original pagan feast.

    I think the sentence that's bothering you is using pagan to refer to flamboyance and colourfulness. But I think it ("pagan") is poorly chosen in this passage, because pagan festivities and sex-oriented dancing have a lot in common: "Saturday Night Fever" is, in that sense, already "pagan". The writer is showing off - using "a sort of pagan" to suggest an analysis that just doesn't hold water.

    b
    Thank you very much, Bob! I think I can translate it somehow into my native language now. However, it sounds weird to me.

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