Stroke
Posted: 13 June 2007 05:03 AM   [ Ignore ]
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As in the sense, He had a stroke which left him paralyzed on the left side.

I’d never realized it before but this was formerly the stroke of God’s hand.

Here’s OED.

Stroke, 6. An attack of disease.  a. An apoplectic or (now more usually) paralytic seizure. Formerly the stroke of God’s hand.

1599 A. M. tr. Gabelhouer’s Bk. Physic 25/2 An excellent Cinnamome water for the stroke of Gods hande.

Acknowledgements to Done With Mirrors, where I chanced upon this.

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Posted: 13 June 2007 07:01 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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And looking it up in the OED I discover that Carlyle once rendered coup de grâce as “stroke-of-grace”!

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Posted: 14 June 2007 06:40 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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The old German term for a stroke was ”Schlag”, which is directly analogous.

The German noun ”Schlag”, meaning “stroke, blow”, has a multitude of specialised senses, as Mark Twain once sourly observed, one of them being “whipped cream”. One of my Viennese ancestors died of a stroke in a Kaffeehaus (not altogether surprising as, like many Viennese of his day, he practically lived in one anyway). Family legend claims that he had only just uttered the words ”Herr Ober! Noch ein Brauner, mit viel Schlag! [Waiter! Another cappuccino, with plenty of whipped cream!]!” when he was stricken.

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Posted: 14 June 2007 07:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Syntinen Laulu - 14 June 2007 06:40 AM

The old German term for a stroke was ”Schlag”, which is directly analogous.

The German noun ”Schlag”, meaning “stroke, blow”, has a multitude of specialised senses, as Mark Twain once sourly observed, one of them being “whipped cream”. One of my Viennese ancestors died of a stroke in a Kaffeehaus (not altogether surprising as, like many Viennese of his day, he practically lived in one anyway). Family legend claims that he had only just uttered the words ”Herr Ober! Noch ein Brauner, mit viel Schlag! [Waiter! Another cappuccino, with plenty of whipped cream!]!” when he was stricken.

If one has to go (and I’m starting to fear that one does) there are far worse ways than sitting in a Viennese Kaffeehaus (although it would have been nice to have had the cappuccino first).

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Posted: 14 June 2007 12:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Carlyle once rendered coup de grâce as “stroke-of-grace”!

I’m not sure I understand. Was this statement made in a critical vein? “Stroke-of-grace” strikes me as a sufferable, if uninspired, rendering of the phrase --- though I would personally prefer to see it just left alone, like rendezvous or bête-noire. Perhaps you could expand on the above remark, lh?—(of course, if it was offered purely as information, all i have to say is “Thank you")

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Posted: 15 June 2007 05:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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I’m not sure I understand. Was this statement made in a critical vein? “Stroke-of-grace” strikes me as a sufferable, if uninspired, rendering of the phrase --- though I would personally prefer to see it just left alone, like rendezvous or bête-noire. Perhaps you could expand on the above remark, lh?

Yes, I’d say “critical vein” is a fair (if mild) description.  Carlyle was a notoriously dotty stylist, and it’s beyond dotty to go around Englishing phrases that are universally used in foreign form.  “Stroke-of-grace” is just as nutty as (to use your examples) “render-yourselves” or “black-beast” would be—completely unintelligible without prior knowledge of the foreign expression.  You might as well call Eisenhower “Iron-hewer.”

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Posted: 15 June 2007 07:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Yes, Carlyle is one of a kind, isn’t he. I loved his French Revolution as a young man, but even then I recall thinking that, while his phrase-making could be truly inspired (sea-green Incorruptible, for instance), his prose could sometimes prove leaden and tiresome. For the record, I never did finish Sartor Resartus. (The bookmark still sits accusingly between the pages I left it all those many years ago).

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Posted: 15 June 2007 11:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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thank you, lh and aldi --- you two make Carlyle sound so stodgy that I feel really glad I never read anything by him.

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Posted: 17 June 2007 08:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Aldi, when a book sits that long on your shelf with a bent ear staring you in the face, it’s time to donate it to the library. Two good things happen with that act. You free yourself of the guilt of not finishing it, and you are allowed to forget about it for the rest of your life. It is spring cleaning time, you know.

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