2012年12月27日

legalistic double-ups と奔放な言葉遊び


wordplay.jpg



legalistic double-ups について、Robertson Cochrane, Wordplay: Origins, Meanings, and Usage of the English Language(University of Toronto Press, 1996, pp.23-4)から備忘のため書き留めておきます。


Many of the legalistic double-ups are left over from the multilingual nature of England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The common people spoke English, and the upper crust spoke Norman French, while laws and church matters were in Latin. So many common expressions were rendered in a mixture of English and French(or Latin). Breaking and entering is an obvious and well-known example of mixing Old English and French words that mean the same thing.

Legal documents, and to some extent our everyday speech and writing, still bristle with these ageing bilingual barnacles−last will and testament, bequeath and devise, true and correct, fit and proper, free and clear, save and except, peace and quiet, goods and chattels.

(中略)

By hook or by crook, time and tide(as in Yuletide, or season, or time)wait for no one. What with one thing and another, we pick and choose at odds and ends. Remaining outwardly calm, cool, and collected, we struggle with might and main to be fair and square, to tread the straight(once strait)and narrow path and avoid racj(read wrack or wreck)and ruin. But when push comes to shove, and we've looked at all the whys and wherefores, it's best to have a last will and testament(they were once distinct)so that our heirs and successors won't have to slug it out with other kith and kin.

And with that, before somebody smites me hip and thigh, I'd better cease, desist, and sign off.



(追記)

早川武夫『法律英語の基礎知識』(商事法務研究会、1992年、pp.192-9)は、法律用語において、「実際の必要から生まれた英仏併記の慣行から、同義語を語の系統に関係なく併記ないし羅列するようになった」とし、用例をアルファベット順に列挙しており便利です。


posted by 石崎 陽一 at 02:51 | Comment(0) | 英語史的な説明 | 更新情報をチェックする
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