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Re: Other 12th night events

Poster: James Gilly / Alasdair mac Iain <alasdair.maciain@snet.net>

At 21:41 19-11-98 -0500, Patricia wrote:
>> This reply by Patricia - Erlich has nothing to do with it as he is out
>> saving the world tonight.
>Small\'smol\ adj [ME smal, fr. OE smael; akin to OHG smal small, L malus
>bad] (bef. 12c)  1  a: having comparatively little size or slight
>dimensions  b:  LOWERCASE  2  a:  minor in influence. power or rank b:
>operating on a limited scale  3  lacking in strength (etc. many meaning
>follow - omitted for brevity) 7  a: mean, petty   b: reduced to a
>humiliated position
>Smallclothes  \'smol-.klo(th)z\ n pl (1796)  1:  close-fitting knee
>breeches worn in the 18th century 2: small articles of clothing (as
>underclothing or handkerchiefs)
>Ah, the heck with it!
>The word small dates back to before the 12 century with the above listed
>definitions.  The boys are little, they are not strong, the have limited
>power, they are in effect SMALLS.
>The phrase smallclothes dates to 1796 per WEBSTERS, not period by any
>Now that I feel; 7 b: reduced to  a humiliating position (read SMALL)  and
>you and I have each been 7 a:  mean and petty (read SMALL) perhaps I will
>just stay home and wash the smallclothes while the authenticity police
>dance and make merry.

My OED agrees with Webster on small-clothes (four citations, 1796-1883).
Under small-as-noun (vice small-as-adjective), definition 9a says "small
clothes," and gives three quotes, from 1837 to 1886.


    1.  Persons or animals of small size or stature; little ones, children.
 (Now only with *the*.)
There are four citations given, dated c 1220, c 1300, 1388, and c 1430.
The 1388 quotation is from Wyclif:

    *Matt.* xviii 6  Who so sclaundrith oon of these smale, that bileuen in

Quick - anybody have a KJ handy?

Alasdair mac Iain

Laird Alasdair mac Iain of Elderslie
Dun an Leomhain Bhig
Canton of Dragon's Aerie [southeastern CT]
Barony Beyond the Mountain  [northern & southeastern CT]
East Kingdom
-------   -------   -------
Argent, a chevron cotised azure surmounted by a sword and in chief two
mullets sable
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