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    #1

    the abuse of anachronism

    Finally, students from the first are instructed to learn the correct quantities of vowels. There are three lasting benefits to be gained from this practice: students avoid the abuse of anachronism (which the use of an American form of the Italian pronunciation entails); they prepare themselves to appreciate the quantitative prosody of an Ambrosian hymn; they understand the system behind the accent marks in Latin missals and breviaries still to be found in some libraries.
    https://books.google.com.tw/books?id...ism%22&f=false
    What does the abuse of anachronism mean in the above passage?
    Last edited by sitifan; 17-Aug-2015 at 19:06.
    I need native speakers' help.

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    #2

    Re: the abuse of anachronism

    I await other replies with interest.

    I'm surprised that phrase is the only thing you don't understand about that paragraph.

  1. Skrej's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: the abuse of anachronism

    Quote Originally Posted by sitifan View Post
    Finally, students from the first are instructed to learn the correct quantities of vowels. There are three lasting benefits to be gained from this practice: students avoid the abuse of anachronism (which the use of an American form of the Italian pronunciation entails); they prepare themselves to appreciate the quantitative prosody of an Ambrosian hymn; they understand the system behind the accent marks in Latin missals and breviaries still to be found in some libraries.
    https://books.google.com.tw/books?id...ism%22&f=false
    What does the abuse of anachronism mean in the above passage?
    Well, I'm confused as to what this means:

    Finally, students from the first are instructed to learn the correct quantities of vowels
    A word has X number of vowels, it's not really a negotiable thing.

    I think, the "abuse of anachronism" is an awkward way of saying avoid trying to pronouncing Latin from the wrong period.

    Classical Latin is pronounced quite differently from ecclesiastical Latin (the latter having been much influenced by Italian) - which is a sort of reverse anachronism in and of itself, since Italian is a child of Latin. With the Catholic Church centered in Italy, the pronunciation of Latin become influenced by Italian. Vowels were influenced by Italian (less nasalized), the letter 'c' became more of a 'ch', etc.

    In other words, don't pronounce Ecclesiastical (Church) Latin with a Classical Latin accent.

    That's just my best guess at it.

  2. Eckaslike's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: the abuse of anachronism

    Firstly, this book is published by The Catholic Unversity Press of America, and so it appears to be primarily aimed at speakers of AmE, hence the author's comment in brackets.

    Basically, an anachronism is anything which is placed into the wrong period of history.

    "Abuse" in the author's context, is the "mistreatment", in the form of mispronunciation, of the Latin language used for religious purposes, by using the wrong vowel length. [Update for clarity: I have taken "quantities of vowels" to read "vowel quantity" or length, because as Skrej said, taken literally it doesn't make sense].

    "Italian pronunciation": to me, it appears that this author believes that Latin was spoken with an Italian accent, or something similar. That was not really what I was taught at school, and I know there is some controversy over how this language was actually pronounced. I will leave that for others to decide or debate.

    I think that the phrase, in the context of the original sentence means, that by using this primer to learn the correct vowel lengths for Latin, students avoid the mispronunciation of Latin vowels, which occurs when they try to speak the language with an Italian accent, but using American vowel lengths.
    Last edited by Eckaslike; 17-Aug-2015 at 21:53. Reason: I hadn't seen Skrej's answer when cross-posting this. It took a while to write!

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