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[review] No Man of Woman Born (Rewoven Tales) by Ana Mardoll
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James Nicoll
2018-11-06 20:19:07 UTC
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No Man of Woman Born (Rewoven Tales) by Ana Mardoll

https://jamesdavisnicoll.com/review/why-dont-you-be-you
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My reviews can be found at http://jamesdavisnicoll.com/
My Dreamwidth at https://james-davis-nicoll.dreamwidth.org/
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Dorothy J Heydt
2018-11-06 20:45:32 UTC
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Post by James Nicoll
No Man of Woman Born (Rewoven Tales) by Ana Mardoll
https://jamesdavisnicoll.com/review/why-dont-you-be-you
Regarding the Witch-king's doom, does everyone realize by now
that it's a subtle linguistic pun?

I quote myself from a while back:

The word "man" in English has been made to stand in for what were
originally two words: _mann_ meaning "a man, as distinguished
from an animal, demon, or god" (compare Latin _homo_, Greek
_anthropos_), and _wer_ meaning "a man, as distinguished from a
woman or a child" (Latin _vir_, Greek _aner, andros_).

If Eowyn and the Witch-King had been pedants like the herb-master
of Minas Tirith, the dialogue might have gone more like this:

"You fool, no living man may harm me."

"_Distinguo_, Sir, I am not _vir_ but _femina._ Prepare to die."

"Excuse me, your Westron is so imprecise. I did not mean _vir_,
I meant _homo_."

"Ah, point taken! In that case, permit me to point out that
Meriadoc, who is not _homo_ but _dimidiulus,_ a Halfling, has
just introduced an Arnorian blade into your knee."

So the Witch-king was doubly slain, by one who was not male and
one who was not, strictly speaking, human.
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
www.kithrup.com/~djheydt/
Kevrob
2018-11-06 22:10:40 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by James Nicoll
No Man of Woman Born (Rewoven Tales) by Ana Mardoll
https://jamesdavisnicoll.com/review/why-dont-you-be-you
Regarding the Witch-king's doom, does everyone realize by now
that it's a subtle linguistic pun?
The word "man" in English has been made to stand in for what were
originally two words: _mann_ meaning "a man, as distinguished
from an animal, demon, or god" (compare Latin _homo_, Greek
_anthropos_), and _wer_ meaning "a man, as distinguished from a
woman or a child" (Latin _vir_, Greek _aner, andros_).
If Eowyn and the Witch-King had been pedants like the herb-master
"You fool, no living man may harm me."
"_Distinguo_, Sir, I am not _vir_ but _femina._ Prepare to die."
"Excuse me, your Westron is so imprecise. I did not mean _vir_,
I meant _homo_."
"Ah, point taken! In that case, permit me to point out that
Meriadoc, who is not _homo_ but _dimidiulus,_ a Halfling, has
just introduced an Arnorian blade into your knee."
So the Witch-king was doubly slain, by one who was not male and
one who was not, strictly speaking, human.
I wonder if Jim Shooter was thinking of this when, in a 1960s
"Legion of Super-Heroes" tale,* he had Nemesis Kid fall at
the hands of [ROT-13] Qhb Qnzfry, orpnhfr ur pbhyq qrsrng nal
BAR bccbarag! [/ROT-13]

* Adventure Comics (v1) #372, sept 1968
https://www.comics.org/issue/22125/cover/4/

----
Kevin R
a.a #2310

"So, Will, you are saying MacDuff is an ALIEN?!!!"
Gene Wirchenko
2018-11-07 03:30:34 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by James Nicoll
No Man of Woman Born (Rewoven Tales) by Ana Mardoll
https://jamesdavisnicoll.com/review/why-dont-you-be-you
Regarding the Witch-king's doom, does everyone realize by now
that it's a subtle linguistic pun?
The word "man" in English has been made to stand in for what were
originally two words: _mann_ meaning "a man, as distinguished
from an animal, demon, or god" (compare Latin _homo_, Greek
_anthropos_), and _wer_ meaning "a man, as distinguished from a
woman or a child" (Latin _vir_, Greek _aner, andros_).
If Eowyn and the Witch-King had been pedants like the herb-master
"You fool, no living man may harm me."
"_Distinguo_, Sir, I am not _vir_ but _femina._ Prepare to die."
"Excuse me, your Westron is so imprecise. I did not mean _vir_,
I meant _homo_."
"Ah, point taken! In that case, permit me to point out that
Meriadoc, who is not _homo_ but _dimidiulus,_ a Halfling, has
just introduced an Arnorian blade into your knee."
So the Witch-king was doubly slain, by one who was not male and
one who was not, strictly speaking, human.
Language pedantry can be so vicious!

Sincerely,

Gene Wirchenko

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