Friday, July 21, 2006

Phraseology: Pedantic

Though I've used Mandingo's "Phraseology" posts as occasions to question his linguistic competence, and more generally to make cheap shots at his pie-eyed posts, today I'll do him the honor of considering his recent post as worthy of this piece of phraseology. Besides, someone has got to keep an eye on the phraseology of the self-proclaimed phraseologist.

Before leaving from Minneapolis to D.C., Mandingo shot off a quick "ripost" to my "pedantic" remarks about the very definition of "phraseology." "Pedantic" was an apt word to use there. As Thomas Wolfe wrote in his short story "A Portrait of Bascom Hawke,"
there was something sneering and pedantical in the way he pronounced each word, biting it off with a prim, nasal and heavily accented enunciation in the manner of certain pedants and purists who suggest by their pronunciation that language in the mouths of most people is vilely and carelessly treated, that each word has a precise, subtle, and careful meaning of its own, and that they—they alone—understand these matters.
My attitude, vain of language usage, cannot be spelled out any better than that.

3 comments:

A Green Cowboy said...

Um....zing, I guess. Good call.

Anonymous said...

I don't think Ilya quite gets the whole idea of phraseology. Maybe next time

Ilya said...

Please anonymous, enlighten me about the "whole idea." Really, the idea of phraseology is what is in dispute between Mandingo and Me, and you're welcome to participate.