ineluctable

By: | Post date: 2017-02-03 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: English, Linguistics

Habib Fanny has just included inexorable in A few of my favorite words here, and I wondered to myself: has the Magister used one of my favourite words, which is related to inexorable but is even more emotive?

Was there ever any doubt?

Michael Masiello’s answer to What is importance of divine intervention in literature?

By Plato’s time the gods and those more mercurial and ineluctable beings, the Fates and the Furies, had already been, to a large extent, mythicized.

Michael Masiello’s answer to Is there any neutral source where I can learn about Donald Trump and his politics?

There is no “view from nowhere”; subjectivity is irrefragable and ineluctable

Michael Masiello’s answer to Is it the people who don’t believe in any god or gods who need to be saved?

Saved from what? […] From death? Even more ineluctable than taxes.

Definition of INELUCTABLE

not to be avoided, changed, or resisted

Ah, that’s pale, Merriam–Webster. Bring on some etymology, that’ll help make it clear.

Like drama, wrestling was popular in ancient Greece and Rome. “Wrestler,” in Latin, is “luctator,” and “to wrestle” is “luctari.” “Luctari” also has extended senses – “to struggle,” “to strive,” or “to contend.” “Eluctari” joined “e-” (“ex-“) with “luctari,” forming a verb meaning “to struggle clear of.” “Ineluctabilis” brought in the negative prefix in- to form an adjective describing something that cannot be escaped or avoided. English speakers borrowed the word as “ineluctable” around 1623.

Not just “you can’t avoid it”, but “you can’t avoid it, no matter how hard you try”. Not just “no matter how hard you try”, but “no matter how hard you struggle against it”. Like a wrestler, pinned to the mat.

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