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- One who cuts, polishes, or engraves gems.
- A dealer in precious or semiprecious stones.
[Middle English lapidarie, from Old French lapidaire, from Latin lapidarius, from lapis, lapid-, stone.]
A lapidary (the word means “concerned with stones”) is an artisan who practices the craft of working, forming and finishing stone, mineral, gemstones, and other suitably durable materials (amber, shell, jet, pearl, copla, coral, horn and bone, glass and other synthetics) into functional and/or decorative, even wearable, items (e.g. cameos, cabochons, and more complex facetted designs). The adjectival term is also extended to refer to such arts.
Diamond cutters are generally not referred to as lapidaries, due to their highly specialized techniques which are required to work diamond successfully.
* Defintion from The American HeritageÂ® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright Â©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2003. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Thinking about the word elutriate in its urban manifestation forces me to reflect in new ways about the awkward intimacy of cleaning our clothes in public. There is an old-fashioned, down-by-the-riverside quality of experience that comes with bringing your clothes to a public place in order to clean them. Some people relish the opportunity to talk to strangers while others turn deeply and painfully into themselves.
For the last week, I’ve been darting into laundry mats all over Brooklyn snapping pictures. Quick is the key word here, as for some reason not one storefront laundry owner has been even the slightest bit welcoming when it comes to taking pictures in their business. I am not sure if they are worried that I might be from the NYC Department of Health or if they are just camera shy. After one too many evictions, I decided to bring my ten year-old daughter along, and things began to proceed a bit more congenially.
See the map of this post from Smith Street.
Meaning: Built in a makeshift and insubstantial manner.
Origin: The phrase has been around since at least 1869, when it was defined in the Lonsdale Glossary:
“Jerry-built, slightly, or unsubstantially built.”
By 1901, the term began to be used figuratively – a sure sign of acceptance into the general language. For example, The Daily Chronicle, in August that year printed this opinion:
“In an age of jerry-built books it is refreshing to come across a volume that has taken forty years to compile.”
The derivation is unknown. What we do know is that the term has nothing to do with the UK slang term for German – Jerry/Gerry. This is of WWI origin and the citations above pre-date that. As always when a phrase’s origin is unknown people like to guess, so here goes. It is possible that the term derives from the slang term jerrycummumble or jerrymumble. This was defined in the 1811 version of Francis Grose’s Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue:
“JERRYCUMMUMBLE. To shake, towzle, or tumble about.”
Some other guesses, although none of them appear to have any substantiating evidence, place the origin as:
- The cheap, flimsy constructs of Jerry Brothers – a Liverpool building firm. (Note: I’ve not been able to confirm the existence of this company).
- The walls of Jericho which, as everyone knows ‘came tumbling down’.
- A corruption of ‘jury-rig’ – although if that were the case we might expect to see some printed reference to ‘jury-built’ or ‘jerry-rigged’. The former is unknown and citations of the latter all date from the 20th century.
Source: The Phrase Finder: http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/211600.html
I came across info on this very interesting place in The Bronx: Wave Hill, that may work for Culm.
It is one of the most famous hills in the bronx, although not the exact “culm” (which of course is Fieldston Hill) but there is a botanical garden at the top with apparently fabulous views of the Hudson.
More information here:
The Georgics, published in 29 BC, is the second major work by the Latin poet Virgil. Its ostensible subject is rural life and farming and the work is generally categorized as a “didactic poem”.
Project Guttenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext95/geore10.txt
Excerpt from Virgil’s Georgic I:
“In early spring-tide, when the icy drip
Melts from the mountains hoar, and Zephyr’s breath
Unbinds the crumbling clod, even then ’tis time;
Press deep your plough behind the groaning ox,
And teach the furrow-burnished share to shine.
That land the craving farmer’s prayer fulfils,
Which twice the sunshine, twice the frost has felt;
Ay, that’s the land whose boundless harvest-crops
Burst, see! the barns.”
With reluctance and anticipation, I trudge down to the World Trade Center with my microphone and recorder to listen. I feel somewhat liberated and invisible without a camera, the sensation of witnessing a site with such a horrific story to tell shifts when my ears are responsible for leading the way. With all of the clutter of this new form of tragedy-tourism, I am trying to find a charged audile experience that will resonate. I record a grizzled, bearded man playing Auld Lang San from beginning to end, at the same time that a group of Midwestern tourists chat comfortably about the falling bodies they never saw.
Susan and I ascend by car and then by foot to the top of Staten Island today, over 400 feet above sea level! We are not far from the comfortable, Italianate homes of Staten Island. The trees are looming, and we feel exhilarated by the sense of accomplishment that comes from reaching this burrough’s culminant point! To our surprise and joy there is actually a small, wood sign designating Todt Hill as the highest point on the Eastern Seaboard below Maine. In pursuit of a NYC-specific visualization of this word, I am becoming much more aware of the topography of our city. Now when I am looking from the Brooklyn Bridge across the harbor to the telephone tower on Todt Hill, I am able to imagine the lush, verdant hilltop woods below.
I just wanted to share a great experience I had on a shoot yesterday for Diglot.
Down the street from my apartment in Queens there is a fabulous street cart vendor aptly named King of Falafel & Shawarma who really does have the best of both.
The owner is an extremely exuberant Palestinian-American man who makes it his business to know everyone in the neighborhood.
I will be editing the footage and hope to have it up soon but in the meantime I wanted to share some still images with you all.
Just go to this URL for a photo gallery: http://www.abecedariumnyc.com/042807.html
(n.) An animal that characteristically lives commensally in the nest, burrow, or dwelling place of an animal of another species.
(adj.) Being or living as an inquiline.
[Latin inquilnus, lodger, tenant : in-, in; see in-2 + colere, to inhabit; see kwel-1 in Indo-European roots.]
- The American HeritageÂ® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. S.v. “inquiline.” Retrieved June 28 2007 from http://www.thefreedictionary.com/inquiline
In zoology, an inquiline is an animal that lives commensally in the nest, burrow, or dwelling place of an animal of another species. For example, some organisms such as insects may live in the homes of gophers and feed on debris, fungi, roots, etc. The most ubiquitous types of inquiline are those found in association with the nests of social insects, especially ants and termites â€” a single colony may support dozens of different inquiline species. The distinctions between parasites, social parasites, and inquilines are subtle, and many species may fulfill the criteria for more than one of these, for inquilines do exhibit many of the same characteristics of parasites.
- Wikipedia contributors, ‘Inquiline’, Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 15 April 2007, 15:00 UTC, <http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Inquiline&oldid=122993110> [accessed 02 April 2007]