I posted the following message to the local e-mail list:For those of us new to the area and new to the weekly PiP... is this
an in-garb affair, or a street clothed thing? If it is in garb, is it
optional, or is it one of those things where if you show up in
mundanes you're gonna get loaner stuff tossed on you?
I received the following response:Actually, it would be best if folks showed up in clothing appropriate to
With the drought and burn bans in effect, I'd be careful with garb...
(I've held off for about a year now so I was due)
I didn't get the second paragraph at all. I assumed maybe it was a poorly worded warning about standing too close to fires with billowing skirts or dragging sleeves because stop drop and roll is a bit harder in dry grass??? It wasn't until I received a bunch of off-line apologies for this guy's comments that I realized it was a poorly-worded jab. Seriously, if you're going to try to be insulting or snarky, the least you can do is be comprehensible when you do. What's the point of a snarky comment if it can't be immediately understood? Or am I just being dense (baby-brained) and missing something obvious?
Anyway, it made me look up the word "garb" that so many of the language nazis have so much difficulty with...
I was able to find a record of its use in an Etymology dictionary as follows:
"1591, "elegance, stylishness," from M.Fr. garbe "graceful outline," from It. garbo "grace, elegance," perhaps from Gmc. (cf. O.H.G. gar(a)wi "dress, equipment, preparation;" see gear). Sense of "fashion of dress" is first attested 1622. The verb is from 1836."
While that is solidly late period, 1591 it is certainly within the confines of the game we play by anyone's definition. That said, reading the entry, I was unsure that the word was used to refer to the object (the clothing itself) as we use it presently. (I'm wary to approve a word in SCA usage simply because I can find that word being used in period, that's how we get "dragon" being an "acceptable" word for car)
I was able to find another piece of writing, showing that the word was used by Shakespeare
, which should be adequate documentation to most people, as his writings are generally accepted as being in-period for our game (though that can be argued). However looking at the lines cited, one can see that it is clearly being used to mean "in the fashion or manner of" rather than "clothes".
The author also states "Avoid the "clothing" sense in Shakespeare, for that did not evolve until a decade after his death.", which is problematic for me as he does not cite his source for the word being used this way. However, if we use this description with the 1622 attribution from the etymological dictionary above, we get it being used in the same manner as we use it today by 1622. It's decidedly late period, and may even be considered out of period to some (being both after the 16th century and after the death of Elizabeth R, both of which I have heard used as cut-offs). Dear readers: does this logic seem sound to everyone at least?
However, the documentability of the word is really beside the point.
1) this is an e-mail list. If you're being in-persona you should probably step away from the computer, or maybe throw it on the fire as the sorcery it must surely be. And if documenting every word that goes on the list is of prime importance, again, you have no business being around modern technology as it will obviously spoil your ambiance (and you should check your own words*).
2) since when does nit-pickiness come in as a higher virtue than courtesy? Especially when dealing with a newcomer!!!
3) He didn't use the word in the proper period manner himself - so there.
I am sooooo tempted to reply, but I really probably don't need to be drawing lines in the sand or making enemies this soon.
* From the etymology dictionary: "Colloquial folks "people of one's family" first recorded 1715". Folk would have been an acceptable period term meaning "people" if he hadn't added the "s".