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KISS Grammar

Lewis Thomas - Selection # 1b

From "Alchemy" in Late Night Thoughts on Listening to Mahler's Ninth Symphony,

Toronto: Bantam Books, 1983, p. 32.

An Allegorical Figure of Grammar
1650, by Laurent de la Hyre
(1606 - 1656), French 
Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore, MD 
  Jim's Fine Art Collectiion 

The notion of alchemy may be as old as language, and the idea that language and

magic are somehow related is also old. "Grammar," after all, was a word used in

the Middle Ages to denote high learning, but it also implied a practicing familiarity

with alchemy. Gramarye, an older term for grammar, signified occult learning

and necromancy. "Glamour," of all words, was the Scottish word for grammar,

and it meant, precisely, a spell, casting enchantment.