The Free Dictionary  
mailing list For webmasters
Welcome Guest Forum Search | Active Topics | Members

Do Not Forget the Jabberwock! Options
Epiphileon
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 4:27:28 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/22/2009
Posts: 3,925
Neurons: 55,497
Whatever part of the diurnal cycle it is for you, I hope it is a good one.
For those in my time zone, and seeing this within the third of a day left to it...
Good Morning!

I awoke this morning in the midst of the final push to complete a tedious, and at times stressful, months long slog through financial bureaucracies, personal history, and the logistics of domiciliary transfer, and remembered just how delightful pure nonsense can be as for some reason I looked up the following poem, and read it a few times out loud.

Maybe it's just me, and maybe it's just this time in life, but though life is for learning, (thanks Joni), sometimes a delve into pure nonsense is refreshing, so remember the Jabberwock, read this ode to the frivolous out loud, and smile a smile for no other reason than to smile.
(Oh and of course, read it dramatically)

Jabberwocky
BY LEWIS CARROLL
’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!”

He took his vorpal sword in hand;
Long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree
And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”
He chortled in his joy.

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.


And if nothing else take perverse delight in the nightmare that is for a spell checker!

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 5:45:42 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 26,450
Neurons: 141,828
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom

There is, of course a glossary . . .

“Slithy” means “lithe,” or flexible, and “slimy” put together in the same word.
A “tove” is part lizard, part badger, and part corkscrew.



Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
progpen
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 8:10:45 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/2/2015
Posts: 1,437
Neurons: 172,118
Location: Princeton, Minnesota, United States
I think the beauty in the poem is that even though many words are nonsense, the poem makes sense and tells a story that small children and adults understand. I'd guess that Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss) knew this poem well.

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. ― Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Romany
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 8:42:27 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 12,349
Neurons: 37,566
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom

Can remember once being really angry on the playground and yelling out "You....you.. Bandersnatch!!" And some slimy tove racing off to tell Sister that I was swearing something terrible in public!

He certainly did know exactly how a child's mind worked (Carroll, not the slimy tove) - but since reading some of the modern research that's come to light on him I've gone off him a wee bit. Even though there's no actual proof that he was dodgy.
Gary98
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 10:45:13 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/23/2014
Posts: 1,604
Neurons: 2,166,909
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
uffish thought:

From its sound, Carroll explained the word as "a state of mind when the voice is gruffish, the manner roughish, and the temper huffish."
thar
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 11:48:29 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/8/2010
Posts: 15,435
Neurons: 61,512
I was always on the side of the Jabberwock, myself.
But there is a certain joy in galumphing anywhere. And blades going snicker-snack.
Epiphileon
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 11:55:43 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/22/2009
Posts: 3,925
Neurons: 55,497
Romany wrote:

He certainly did know exactly how a child's mind worked (Carroll, not the slimy tove) - but since reading some of the modern research that's come to light on him I've gone off him a wee bit. Even though there's no actual proof that he was dodgy.


Well that sounds ominous Rom, it seems to me I'd heard that something may have been up with him, but I didn't hear anything else about it. I'm sure there are a number of historical figures which it may not be pleasant to know more about.

I had a good time with the poem this morning though. Have you tried a dramatic reading? It certainly had a pleasing effect on my affect this morning.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
Epiphileon
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 12:46:14 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/22/2009
Posts: 3,925
Neurons: 55,497
Drag0nspeaker wrote:

There is, of course a glossary . . .


Thanks Drag0 I would have never thought to look for this...
From you "tove" I expect there are others. do you suppose there are heated academic debates on which is the most authoritative?

Bright Hub Education wrote:
Definitions of the Nonsensical Words
brillig - noun - that time between twilight and pitch black, when it is just starting to get scary dark

slithy - adjective - slimy and slithering

tove - noun - a short, greasy reptile

gyre - verb - turn around

gimble - verb - move in a quivery yet nimble fashion

wabe - noun - edge of the treeline right where the forest begins

mimsy - adjective - flimsy, yet menacing

borogove - noun - small animal that looks like an armadillo, with a pointy nose and soft skin

mome rath - noun - animal similar to a sloth, which hangs in a tree and is usually completely silent, but when provoked cries out very loudly

outgrabe - verb - past tense of verb outgribe, to call out outrageously loudly

Jabberwock - noun - large animal best understood in the larger context of the poem, whose main features--as far as other animals and humans are concerned--are "the jaws that bite" and "the claws that catch"

Jubjub bird - noun - a huge flightless bird that looks identical to Big Bird, but which is much more agressive and dangerous

frumious - adjective - voluminously furry

Bandersnatch - noun - four-legged black and white striped animal that snatches up unsuspecting prey

vorpal - adjective - lithe and sharp

manxome - adjective - skilled at hiding

Tumtum tree - noun (compound) - short, deciduous tree with broad, bright green leaves

uffish - adjective - deep, profound

whiffle - verb - to breathe heavily and loudly

tulgey - adjective - dense and wet, often used to refer to foliage

burble - verb - to make vocalized bubbles with the mouth

snicker-snack - interjection - onomatopoeia used to describe the sound of a sword cutting into something

galumph - verb - to gallop triumphantly

beamish - adjective - beaming

frabjous - adjective - fabulous to the point of causing great happiness

callooh - interjection - expression of happiness

callay - interjection - expression of happiness

chortle - verb - to chuckle happily while making joyous exclamations


Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
Romany
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 5:33:30 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 12,349
Neurons: 37,566
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom



Well I never knew that! "Chortle", "burble" and "galumph" are all from 'Alice'?

Well then, nuns must all be Carroll aficionados - for during the interim of getting from 8 yrs old to 13, I was a giant! And according to many nuns up and down the East Coast of Oz, I gallumphed. I never worked out if it was an insult to my size or my gait. But as I was the only kid who complicated matters by having to use the "Big Girls" toilet because her knees had nowhere to go in the Little'uns, I sensed it wasn't a complimentary thing.

So I've always interpreted it as meaning clumsy. And Lumpy. And louche.Eh?

And now I find out it means, rather gloriously: "to gallop triumphantly"! Dancing

Which means I went and got myself a complex for nothing all those years ago. All I had to do was read the glossary!Anxious
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 5:55:09 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 26,450
Neurons: 141,828
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.”
“The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.”
“The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master—that’s all.”

**********
There is some debate - caused possibly by different explanations by Lewis Carroll at different times:
In "The Hunting of the Snark", he mentioned that "frumious" is the word you use when you want to say 'fuming' and 'furious' but can’t decide which to say first.

Before "Alice" was first published, he published parts of "Jabberwocky" and defined some of the words.
borogroves - ‘an extinct kind of parrot with no wings that nested under sundials’
toves - ‘badgers with horns that fed on cheese’
raths - ‘a species of land turtle with a mouth like a shark that walked on its knees’.


In "Through the Looking Glass" he invented the concept of the 'portmanteau word':
slithy (lithe + slimy), chortle (chuckle + snort), galumphing (gallop + triumph).

He also changes his explanation of 'rath' to "a type of green pig".

He defined "chortle" as blend of chuckle and snort.
"Mimsy" was 'miserable' and 'flimsy'.

There are others to be found through his writings - I think I remember 'wabe' as being the area which goes a long way behind a sundial and a long way before it.

Even the supercilious Humpty-Dumpty admits not knowing some of them:
"'mome'- I'm not certain about. I think it's short for 'from home'--meaning that they'd lost their way, you know."


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Articulate Dreamer
Posted: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 11:55:37 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/16/2009
Posts: 11,711
Neurons: 78,110
Location: Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Curiously witty and succinct. Unusually and remarkably communicative for an introvert was our Mr Dodgson> thanks, Epi for this delightful reminder.

I'm not at all sure any of the allegations of perversion really stick, and Lewis Carroll to me remains an admirable icon.
My own favorite is The Walrus and the Carpenter.
https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/43914/the-walrus-and-the-carpenter-56d222cbc80a9

Did he unwittingly father absurdism in English literature? Likely.

"...hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour"
Hope123
Posted: Wednesday, August 02, 2017 9:34:55 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/23/2015
Posts: 6,388
Neurons: 37,857
Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada
Epi, ever hear of an ear worm? Well thanks a lot. Whistle Whistle Whistle

Ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have. -James Baldwin, writer
Users browsing this topic
Guest


Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.

Main Forum RSS : RSS
Forum Terms and Guidelines. Copyright © 2008-2017 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.