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re: lemniscate

Oct 24, 1995 11:08 PM
by Jerry Hejka-Ekins

 The recent discussion over "lemniscate" brings to mind a
precaution that should be addressed. Words do change meaning
from time to time. Technical words, like "lemniscate" tend to
hold their meaning, but sometimes find new applications as our
scientific knowledge grows. For instance, we understand the word
"atom" very differently today than we would have in HPB's time.
On the other hand, more common words often change with the
culture. For instance, I can well remember a time when the word
"gay" had nothing to do with homosexuality. Therefore, with the
study of the SD, it is helpful to keep the above in mind. The
ideal situation is to have a dictionary or two published around
the time that the book was written, but this is not practical for
most of us. The multi-volumed Oxford English Dictionary is
helpful because it traces the changes in word meanings, and a
miniture edition of it is (or was) available through books clubs,
and commonly appear in used book stores for about $80.00--a good

Jerry HE

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