Speaking & writing in the days of yore.

I’m in the middle of reading The Count of Monte Cristo.  Well, page 870-something of 1814 on the iPad.  So almost the middle.

And ohhhhh, I get swept away by the language.  They had a passion for words back then – let’s call it the days of yore, just for the sake of being able to use the word ‘yore’ multiple times in a post.

Reading books such as The Count and Les Mis kind of makes me feel like I speak and write like a caveman though.  “Me Amy.  I write words.  They is good.”

Some examples of Monte Cristo yore vs. well, today:

Days of Yore:

  • “I have an engagement which I cannot break.  I have promised to escort to the Academie a Greek princess of my acquaintance who has never seen your grand opera, and who relies on me to conduct her thither.”

Days of Today:

  • “I have to go.  I promised to take this chick I know to the movies at [insert name of fanciest movie theatre in town here].”

Days of Yore:

  • “My father abandons me from utter indifference, while my mother-in-law detests me with a hatred so much the more terrible because it is veiled beneath a continual smile.”

Days of Today:

  • “My dad doesn’t even know I exist, and my stepmom can’t stand me.  It’s so annoying – she totally fakes it and acts all nice.”

Days of Yore:

  • “Shall we make a positive appointment for a particular day and hour? Only let me warn you that I am proverbial for my punctilious exactitude in keeping my engagements.”

Days of Today:

  • “Should we set a time to meet?  You should know that I always show and am never late for anything.”

The words are not unknown or even uncommon today – we simply don’t arrange them in the same way they did back in yore.  (Does anyone else think of Rachel from Friends when they read or say the word ‘yore’?  You know – the one with the apothocary table.  Yore = Pottery Barn)

For now, good folk, I must conduct myself thither with exact puntuality to commence my day of toil in business.

Hmm.  Yeah.  I’ll work on it.

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4 thoughts on “Speaking & writing in the days of yore.

  1. haha. Awesome! I love the movie The Count of Monte Cristo but have never been brave (foolish?) enough to tackle the massive book.

    I do appreciate our ability to be succinct these days though. It doesn’t have the same flavor but at least it’s good for something (sometimes!)

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