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A.Word.A.Daywith Anu Garg
In a conversation, if you discuss a person, do you dis them and cuss them? Hopefully not. Not nice to say bad things behind someone’s back.
Also, not nice to break a word like this and folk-etymologize it. Language doesn’t work like this. The word discuss has nothing to do with cuss (a variant of curse), though it does involve the same prefix.
The word is a combination of Latin dis- (apart) and cutere (to break up). In other words, to discuss something is to break it apart or to analyze it.
This week we’re going to discuss verbs. We’re going to break them apart and show their roots. Just like “discuss”, you might think this week’s words have something to do with rust, flag, moll, quill, or fleeing, but they don’t.
From Latin rusticari (to live in the country), from rus (country). Earliest documented use: 1660.
“I will then be forced to rusticate in the country for months to recover from such a deadly blow.”
Vanessa Kelly; Mastering the Marquess; Zebra; 2009.
“When he was rusticated from Oxford for failing his exams, the late journalist Auberon Waugh was told by his father, Evelyn: ‘There are only two possible careers for a man who has been sent down from Oxford. You must become either a schoolmaster or a spy.’”
Harry Mount; The First Rule of Spy Club? Never Ask to Join Spy Club; The Daily Telegraph (London, UK); Jul 2, 2021.
“[The house] comes with a rusticated stucco exterior.”
Weekender Sets Kogan Back $13m; The Australian (Canberra); Feb 15, 2021.
See more usage examples of rusticate in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:For sleep, riches, and health to be truly enjoyed, they must be interrupted. -Jean Paul Richter, writer (21 Mar 1763-1825)