Sunday, February 22, 2009

Word of the week Feb 22-28: blessed

Word of the Week: February 22-28


Definition according to the Dictionary of Newfoundland English:

blessed a Cp EDD ~ ppl adj 'emphatic for good'; OED2 'worthy to be blessed by men'; JOYCE 196-7.

Note: The term is of unusual frequency in the region, esp applied to natural phenomena (sun, moon, sky, stars, rain, snow, thunder, etc), or used in exclamatory phrases (e.g. 'Jesus, Mary and Joseph, look down upon us this blessed day and night!'). A few examples are given below.

Comb blessed brand: the remains of wood used in Ash Wednesday church ritual. M 71-121 It was a custom on Ash Wednesday for everyone to receive a piece of Blessed Bran. Wood was burned to make the ashes [and] the wood that remained unbumt was called Blessed Bran. Each person had to clean out his stove and lay a new fire with this piece of [wood] at the bottom. This...would protect the house from fire for that year.

blessed bread: bread over or on which the sign of the cross is made prior to baking in order to ensure rising. M 71-114 Home-made bread was always [made with] the sign of the cross on the dough. The bread was always referred to as blessed bread.

blessed virgin's leaf: lady's thumb (Polygonum persicaria). P 85-65 ~ a common weed with the likeness of a thumb-print on the leaf. C 67-8 Any kind of bleeding can be stopped with the blessed virgin's leaf, a locally known plant.

Now, we invite you to RELiVE, REMEMBER and REFRESH iT and/or even REDEFiNE iT!

The main thing is to RELiSH iT.

We also post the word of the week on our sister facebook group each week.

The word of the week is brought to you each week by Rattling Books, a "so small we're fine" Canadian audiobook publisher operating from its global headquarters atop a tor on the coast of Newfoundland.

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