fancifully varied in color, decoration, etc.
The story of harlequin “fancifully varied in color and decoration” is chock full of semantic twists and turns—creating a devilishly good time the further back in time we peer. Harlequin is borrowed by way of Middle French from Italian arlecchino, and before that, the term originated in Old French variously as halequin, hellequin, and herlekin, the name of or a term for a malevolent spirit. Despite the resemblance to English hell, these Old French words may in fact derive from an Old English name, Herla cyning “King Herle.” Herle may have been a legendary or mythological figure similar to Woden (the Anglo-Saxon equivalent of Odin), or the term Herla cyning could be related to the recent Word of the Day erlking “elf king,” though there are issues with the phonology in the latter hypothesis. An alternative origin of Herla is a Germanic root meaning “army” that is also found in the names Harold, Herbert, Herman, Walter, Warner, and even Oliver. Harlequin was first recorded in English in the 1580s.
Under a kaleidoscope of lights and surrounded by mirrors, Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele sent out models in headgear made up of partially and fully covering face masks, sometimes with spikes, extended ear cuffs, at times almost elf-like as well as intricately carved bronze pieces …. Colorful harlequin prints decorated several outfits, some tops were shiny and pleated, reminiscent of 1970s disco fashion, and bows were at times tied around the ankles on trouser suits, which came in large shapes, with waistcoats or ties for women.
Well, I’ll be, Grandfather said of the television … Grandfather’s hand itched to turn it on. Please, Obdulio said. Please, be my guest. The colors amazed Grandfather. Dazzling harlequin colors. The brown of the horse was deeper than the real color of a horse Grandfather had seen growing up in the mining town of Metcalf, Arizona. Blue. Now, that was a true blue. He had seen that blue, that exactness, on the Gulf of Mexico as a youth on a fishing trip…
incapable of being evaded; inescapable.
Ineluctable “incapable of being evaded” derives from Latin inēluctābilis, equivalent to the prefix in- “not” and the verb ēluctārī “to force a way out or over, surmount.” The latter is a compound of ē-, the prefix version of ex “out of, from,” and the verb luctārī “to struggle, wrestle.” Another English derivative of luctārī is the noun reluctance, which literally means “the state of struggling against,” and if you’re a fan of wrestling, you may have already connected Spanish lucha—as in the phrase lucha libre (literally “free wrestling”)—to luctārī. The evolution of Latin luctārī to Spanish lucha demonstrates a common sound correspondence, namely, that Latin -ct- often (though not always) becomes -ch- in Spanish. Also compare Latin nox (stem noct-) with Spanish noche “night,” Latin octõ with Spanish ocho “eight,” and Latin prōfectus with Spanish provecho “profit.” Ineluctable was first recorded in English circa 1620.
As a scientist … I operate under the hypothesis that all our thoughts, memories, percepts and experiences are an ineluctable consequence of the natural causal powers of our brain rather than of any supernatural ones. That premise has served science and its handmaiden, technology, extremely well over the past few centuries. Unless there is extraordinary, compelling, objective evidence to the contrary, I see no reason to abandon this assumption.
Superhero flicks are unavoidably formulaic. The heroes are difficult to kill not because of their superpowers, but because they serve a higher power, an industrial blockbuster economy. The superstars each get their screen time, in a loose correlation to their importance to fans. Their defeats are ephemeral, even when they die (or appear to). They are part of the ineluctable journey to a climactic battle, which in turn points the way towards more films.
of or relating to Easter or to Passover.
Paschal “of or relating to Easter or to Passover” derives from Late Latin paschālis, of the same meaning, which is the adjectival form of Pascha “Easter, Passover.” Pascha, as with many words in Latin that contain the telltale ch, is adapted from Ancient Greek Páscha, which is itself borrowed from Aramaic pasḥā. The ultimate source is Hebrew pesaḥ “Passover,” derived from the verb pāsaḥ “to pass over.” In this way, Passover is a calque of the original Hebrew term; to learn more about calques, compare the recent Word of the Day inveigle. Unlike the majority of European languages, which use derivatives of Latin Pascha for both Passover and Easter, most Germanic languages derive their term for Easter from the same source as the word east—not, per popular misconception, from a Middle Eastern goddess such as Astara or Ishtar. Paschal was first recorded in English in the early 15th century.
Easter Sunday is the first Sunday after the first full moon after the spring equinox (the halfway point between the summer and winter solstices, which is also the first day of spring). This full moon is called the ‘paschal moon’ in the Christian tradition …. Two things happened in the fourth century–the Christian Council of Nicea laid down the first-Sunday-after-the-full-moon formula, and Jewish scholars standardized the date of Passover to a fixed date in the Hebrew calendar. Neither Easter nor Passover have a fixed date in the secular (standard) calendar. On the other hand, both Easter and Passover have a relationship to the paschal moon.
The Last Supper, which is so celebrated in art, was of course a Seder. It was a Passover meal. And this year, as Neal [Conan] said at the beginning, Easter week begins at the same time as Passover. And the echoes of Passover in all of the Easter liturgies are enormous. The symbolism of the Paschal lamb and the Paschal Sacrifice, the meaning of going from slavery to freedom, from death to life, are the same. So there are many, many things that make you feel more together than apart at this season of the year.
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