GWJ Conference Call Episode 120

Conference Call

FEAR 2, Dominion, Puzzle Quest: Galactrix, LOTRO, Mario Party 8, Mona The Assassin, Your Emails, Voicemails and more!

With next week's Rabbit-Con show rapidly approaching we tackle extra emails and voice mails to catch up on the backlog. Gaming triumphs, losing yourself, the Zune revolution and much more. If you want to submit a question or comment call in to our voicemail line at (612) 284-4563!

To contact us, email [email protected]! Send us your thoughts on the show, pressing issues you want to talk about or whatever else is on your mind. You can even send a 30 second audio question or comment (MP3 format please) if you're so inclined. You can also submit a question or comment call in to our voicemail line at (612) 284-4563!

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Comments

rabbit wrote:

In case there was every any doubt, we are the biggest f*cking nerds on planet earth.

heh.

I think you have me beat... I don't have an OED at my disposal... At least, not without driving down the road a few minutes.

NSMike wrote:

Decimate means to reduce by 10. This comes from the Roman Legion, where if there was misconduct in a century (100 soldiers), 10 of the solders in the century would be executed as punishment, apparently at random. So people didn't screw around.

So yes, this was always my understanding of the Latin origin, although you could argue that the root definition isn't necessarily representative of modern usage. I mean, look at what happened to the term "football."

- Alan

Let me just go ahead and type out what the Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology has to say:
[quote]decimate de-semeit exact tithe from; put to death one in ten of a number. XIII f.pp. stem of L. decimare, f. decimus tenth; see prec. and -ATE(3). So decimA-TION extraction of the tithe XV; destruction of one in ten. XVI. -late L.

That means "decimate" as "tithe" entered the English lexicon in the 15th century, before the use meaning "kill 10%" entered in the 16th.

wordsmythe wrote:

Let me just go ahead and type out what the Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology has to say:

decimate de-semeit exact tithe from; put to death one in ten of a number. XIII f.pp. stem of L. decimare, f. decimus tenth; see prec. and -ATE(3). So decimA-TION extraction of the tithe XV; destruction of one in ten. XVI. -late L.

That means "decimate" as "tithe" entered the English lexicon in the 15th century, before the use meaning "kill 10%" entered in the 16th.

That's great for the English language, but that doesn't account for the Latin meaning.

And doesn't the first entry there say "put to death one in ten of a number" for the 13th century?

NSMike wrote:
wordsmythe wrote:

Let me just go ahead and type out what the Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology has to say:

decimate de-semeit exact tithe from; put to death one in ten of a number. XIII f.pp. stem of L. decimare, f. decimus tenth; see prec. and -ATE(3). So decimA-TION extraction of the tithe XV; destruction of one in ten. XVI. -late L.

That means "decimate" as "tithe" entered the English lexicon in the 15th century, before the use meaning "kill 10%" entered in the 16th.

That's great for the English language, but that doesn't account for the Latin meaning.

And doesn't the first entry there say "put to death one in ten of a number" for the 13th century?

The 13th century reference is to the Latin. If a writer were intending to explicitly reference a non-English word, the correct style for that would be to write the foreign word in italics.

But Rabbit's point still stands: Nowhere in the definition I transposed is there reference to "decimate" as a synonym of "obliterate."

wordsmythe wrote:

Rabbit's point still stands: Nowhere in the definition I transposed is there reference to "decimate" as a synonym of "obliterate."

Smooch.

Reviewing what became of this discussion, I'm really quite proud of myself.

Elysium wrote:

Reviewing what became of this discussion, I'm really quite proud of myself.

There's a reason you guys still keep me around.