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Preview: Comments on The Clutter Museum: Appropriate use of language in 1940s?

Comments on The Clutter Museum: Appropriate use of language in 1940s?





Updated: 2011-11-01T10:05:51.746-06:00

 



I checked the OED for usage notes on orgy. I think...

2006-05-12T10:41:00.000-06:00

I checked the OED for usage notes on orgy.

I think the phrase you're using is most like definition 3b:
In extended use: an occasion of excessive indulgence in any activity, attitude, condition, etc.; an excessive or extravagant display of something. Freq. with of.

Notes: 1883 F. HARRISON Choice Bks. (1886) 400 That orgy of blood and arrogance{em}the European tyranny of Bonaparte. 1918 B. TARKINGTON Magnificent Ambersons x. 143 In all the wild orgy of wastefulness and luxury with which the nineteenth century reaches its close, the gilded youth has been surley the worst symptom. 1978 Washington Post (Nexis) 26 July (Maryland Weekly section) 9 Our eldest, who had not yet dropped out of this culinary orgy, had fettucine with meat sauce (Bolognese). 1989 N. SHERRY Life Graham Greene I. xl. 662 They liked New York. The weather was lovely and Vivien was having an orgy of shopping.

I don't know if that helps. It seems possible but unlikely to me that a 1940s woman would use the term.



Just a guess, but I cannot any woman (except perha...

2006-04-23T13:14:00.000-06:00

Just a guess, but I cannot any woman (except perhaps Dorothy Parker) in the 1940s using the term "buying orgy".



If I had a little more time, I'd follow up this no...

2006-04-23T09:41:00.000-06:00

If I had a little more time, I'd follow up this notion a little more to see if it's practicable or not, but since it's almost swimming lesson time, I'll just toss it out perhaps too quickly: are there any full-text databases encompassing that period that you could search to look at distribution of the term? And there are also some historical slang dictionaries (Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang, e.g.) that might offer some insight. Plus some fiction from the period--while not conclusive--might offer some suggestions.

And on another note, hurrah for winning B4B!