Curate's egg.

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March 1st, 2013 at 7:24:16 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 866
Posts: 10294
The Australian phrase "Stone the crows" qualifies as one of those that doesn't make much sense anymore.


"As different as chalk and cheese" is over 600 years old, and the opposite "as alike as two peas in a pod" which has been around for 400 years.
March 1st, 2013 at 8:35:48 AM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 345
Posts: 12536
The common, though not so much now, expression that makes the least sense to me is "The exception that proves the rule."

There are two problems with that. 1) it makes no logical sense to say a rule is confirmed by having exceptions and 2) a rule si not natural law, or even legal or common law; therefore it can have exceptions.

A long time ago I came across a reference to the effect that the original was "the exception that proBes the rule." That has logical sense, but not any other kind.
Donald Trump is a fucking liar
March 1st, 2013 at 9:01:05 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 866
Posts: 10294
Quote: Nareed
The common, though not so much now, expression that makes the least sense to me is "The exception that proves the rule."

There are two problems with that. 1) it makes no logical sense to say a rule is confirmed by having exceptions and 2) a rule si not natural law, or even legal or common law; therefore it can have exceptions.

A long time ago I came across a reference to the effect that the original was "the exception that proBes the rule." That has logical sense, but not any other kind.


There are grammarians who think the word "prove" in that sentence should be from that same Latin word that gives us Spanish "probar" with the meaning "to test" (not "to taste"). In Rome the legal principal was "exceptio probat regulam in casibus non exceptis".

It probably should be written logically "The exception that proves that a general rule exists."

A simple example would be a sign that says "On Saturday night lights out is after 10PM". The exception for Saturday night implies that on Sunday-Friday lights out is 10PM.

Por la muestra se conoce el paño.
March 1st, 2013 at 12:56:56 PM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 345
Posts: 12536
Quote: Pacomartin
There are grammarians who think the word "prove" in that sentence should be from that same Latin word that gives us Spanish "probar" with the meaning "to test" (not "to taste"). In Rome the legal principal was "exceptio probat regulam in casibus non exceptis".


No, it still makes no sense.

Quote:
It probably should be written logically "The exception that proves that a general rule exists."


That's just it: why do we need an exception in order to know there is a general rule???? It seems like more of the "contrast" argument. You know, "If evil dind't exist we wouldn't know good." Which is ridiculous in and of itself.
Donald Trump is a fucking liar
March 1st, 2013 at 1:47:58 PM permalink
TheCesspit
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 23
Posts: 1929
You use exception cases to test that the general rule you have come up with still works.

Exception cases are what about 75% of business logic computer code is.
It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die.... it's called Life
March 1st, 2013 at 8:10:38 PM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 866
Posts: 10294
The true origin of the phrase lies in a medieval Latin legal principle: exceptio probat regulam in casibus non exceptis, which may be translated as "the exception confirms the rule in the cases not excepted"....A sign on a museum door which says "Entry free today" leads to the implication that entry is not free on other days.

You might try to take liquor out of a bar in a resort in Mexico after 11PM. BUt there is a sign that says free beer from 6PM to 11PM. While you can argue that the beer is free for part of the night, so what is the harm, the resort may argue "exceptio probat regulam in casibus non exceptis".
March 2nd, 2013 at 7:33:13 AM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 345
Posts: 12536
I appreciate the explanations, but it still makes no sense.
Donald Trump is a fucking liar
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