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betise (bay-TEEZ) noun, plural betises (bay-TEEZ)
1. Stupidity, foolishness.
2. A foolish remark or action.
[From French bêtise (stupidity, nonsense), from bête (foolish, beast), from Old French beste (beast), from Latin bestia. A related French term is bête noire (literally, black beast), something or someone dreaded or avoided.]
"Public accountability of ministers and senior civil servants has, to put
it mildly, been relaxed. If something goes badly wrong, the minister in
whose orbit the betise has occurred rarely makes a public apology, let
"We say English; they say language arts. There are some resemblances
between the two tongues, and `The Expository Mode of Discourse' warns
against overdoing the conjunctions - a betise technically known,
apparently, as an `on and on' - and tells us that the run-on sentence is
still regarded as serious error."
This week's theme: words from the major source languages of English.
When I am working on a problem I never think about beauty. I only think about how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong. -R. Buckminster Fuller, engineer, designer, and architect (1895-1983)