Friday, September 26, 2008

Today's Word: macaronic

macaronic: Characterized by a mix of vernacular and Latin words or of vernacular words with Latin endings, or simply characterized by a mix of two languages. I imagine that pidgins are macaronic , at least when they first begin to form. Without having delved into the intricacies of the meaning of this word, I would imagine that creoles, and especially the Creole of Louisiana with its mix of English and French, could be described as macaronic.

This word has metaphorical possibilities outside of language, if only people knew it existed. Considering the Democrat/Republican partisanship in congress, one might say that the bills coming from Congress are sometimes ironic, sometimes moronic, but always macaronic.